Text First

A short story for a Saturday:

I’m sorry? Is that what I should say? The best way to approach her? Red light. Again. I should’ve texted her. Make sure she wants to see me but no, I jumped in here in my jammies and drove. I’m sorry. Yes. That’s what I’ll say. It was a mistake, I’ll say. A joke. Holiday cheer and all of that. What’s a stocking without a present? Without a lump of coal if you’ve been bad. You haven’t, have you? I’ll ask her. Be direct for once. Green light. Finally. Shit. Heater, come on. I’m freezing here. Oh, and it’s a sock. The punch line. What’s a…She doesn’t like my jokes though. When will I learn? Watch your speed. Red, no green light. Yes. Keep going. It’s your lucky night. Come on. I hate texts. She hates fights. Was this a fight? Is. ‘Is’ a fight? It’s a very quiet one. Is. Still ongoing, I suppose. Slow down. What’s the limit? Crossed hers apparently. Red light. Wait. My phone vibrates. Another message. Where are my readers? Can’t see shit. Don’t honk at me! Oh fine, give me the finger, great. I’m sorry. Yes, I’ll start there. Act as if it’s all just fine and dandy between us. Make a fire. Put the kettle on. Make a cuppa tea. Something like that and then when she’s all warm and soft, I can explain. Heater’s broke? She didn’t tell me that. It was her who used it last, wasn’t it? Smells like aftershave in here. Odd. Oh, just wonderful, the snow comes now? Sheesh. Toes, stay with me. Not long now. I’m sorry. It was a Christmas stocking, that’s all. Chocolate, coal, a banana and a letter. Did you read it, I’ll ask. No. That’ll make her defensive. That’s not pretty. Red light again? I hate night driving. Did I brush my teeth? Look, how was I to know about the snake in her bed. It was ten years ago! I didn’t even know her. Did she tell me? No, that’ll piss her off if I ask. I don’t remember. Do I? Still can’t read your texts. Stop messaging me. I’m driving! Waiting. Oh, driving. I’m sorry. I didn’t know. Did I? A rattler. Who sleeps with snakes? Not in my world. Did in hers apparently. So she says. I should be considerate. Or something. I’m sorry. I am. It’s not enough though, is it? Probably not. Just because I forgot about the stupid snake. Didn’t I? No. Not really. Where’s her Subaru? She’s not here? Where the hell is she? At Mike’s? Again? I should’ve texted.

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