Pick Me!

A weblog by Laura Moncur


Illustration Friday: Free

Filed under: Fiction — Laura Moncur @ 10:31 am

Click here to read a previous story about Marcus:

She pulled a ten dollar bill out of her pocket and handed it to Marcus, but he held up his hand. “This one’s free. I haven’t seen you here forever. Where’ve you been?” Dana was a little thicker around the waist than she had been over five years ago when he last saw her. He knew where she had been. She had been moving on with her life while he stayed in the club. Now he was behind the bar instead of on the dance floor. It didn’t matter. He was still standing stagnant in the same pond. She was having babies (obviously) and experiencing new things.

“Well, you know Randy and I got married. We have two kids now. Randy’s here too.” She scanned the club, but her eyes didn’t lock on anything. Marcus looked for him too, but couldn’t find the familiar face. Dana continued, “We found a babysitter that is actually reliable, so we thought we’d hit the old haunts.” She looked at him. “I still can’t believe how young you look. You haven’t aged a day since I last saw you.”

Marcus smiled and blushed. Dana might be a little fatter than she was during the old days, but Marcus could still see the vixen that she was. It was as if her sexiness came from within her instead of her body. The veins ran blue under her pale skin. She had always been pale, but she seemed so much more so now. “It’s the Atkins Diet. I pretty much only eat meat and it works great. I’m in the best shape of my life.”

Marcus felt lucky, actually. A while ago, he started losing weight, even though he hadn’t worked out or ran on the treadmill in ages. His beer belly melted away when he stopped drinking alcohol and his muscles started growing when he started eating meat exclusively. He thought about that story of the Ugly Duckling and imagined that it was finally his time to bloom. He shrugged at the thought that it came ten years too late. He didn’t even take advantage of his situation. He never took the fawning beauties home for enjoyment. He felt it was kind of unfair to take home the drunk girls when he was stone cold sober. Plus, it would probably affect his tips.

“Wow, I need to try that diet.” Dana patted her round butt. “Maybe me and Randy should both go on that diet.” She waved at a middle-aged poser in vinyl pants and Marcus’ eyes widen at the vision. It was Randy, but so much older. He had lost so much hair and the dark eyeliner looked so pathetic on his slightly wrinkling eyes. Randy held up his hand for a high-five and Marcus slapped it, trying to hide his amazement. “Marcus! You old dog! Man, I can’t believe we’d find anyone here that we recognized, but here you are. Man, you look great! What are you doing, spending all day in the gym?” Dana jabbed Randy in his extended beer belly, “HE’S on the ATKINS diet.” Randy nodded in approval and patted his gut, “I need to try me some of that!”

Marcus filled a beer glass with Randy’s favorite, “It’s free, dude. There has to be some reward for surviving this long, right?” Randy took the beer gladly and the foam stuck to his upper lip in a funny mustache. He wiped it off with the back of his hand. “I requested ‘Worlock.’ Do you think they’ll play it.” Marcus rolled his eyes, “Yeah, they play it every night. This place never changes.” Randy laughed and punched Marcus lightly in the arm, “Yeah, like you, huh?” Marcus chuckled and looked over his old friend.

“There’s some kid at our table.” Randy pointed to the table where he and Marcus used to always sit and guard like animals. Marcus shrugged. “This is my spot now. That kid’s alright. He comes every weekend. I kind of like him.” Randy looked over at him. “He looks like a poser. Man, we were slam dancing when he was learning to walk.” Marcus shook his head, “He’s not a poser. He’s just young. We used to be like that.” The two of them looked at the young Goth kid and Marcus could tell that Randy was a little jealous of him.

“So, Dana says you got two kids.” Randy’s eyes got wide and he reached in his back pocket. “I’ve got the best kids ever, man.” He pulled out his wallet and produced two worn pictures of smiling children. They had the best features of Dana and Randy at their prime. Randy rambled on, “This is Loni. Isn’t she adorable. She’s almost five now and she can already read. Dana takes her to the library every week and she gets so many books. This is Bobby. He’s three and a half. You know what?” Randy, already drunk off the one beer, waited for Marcus to answer. Marcus had been filling a drink order for one of the waitresses, but answered deftly, “What?” Randy continued, “He potty trained himself!” He told us one day that he wanted big boy pants and he never messed them once. Can you believe it?” Marcus shook his head. “Wow! That’s amazing!”

The haunting screeches of Worlock came over the speakers. Dana and Randy ran out to the dance floor to dance and pose to the song. Marcus never really liked the song and they played it every fucking night. The young Goth kid walked up to the empty bar. “Whose that old guy? Fucker tried to take my table.” Marcus chuckled. “It was his table first, dipwad.” The Goth kid squinted his eyes. “So, he used to come here?” Marcus nodded, “Yeah, that’s my friend, Randy. We beat up so many cowboys together that there should have been a wanted poster for us.” The Goth kid turned toward the dance floor and watched Randy dancing with Dana. “Man, I never want to get that old.” Marcus shook his head. “Only other option is dying, kid.”


No Comments »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Leave a comment

Powered by WordPress
(c) 2003-2007 Laura Moncur