THRICE Fiction Apr. 2014 - Page 8

“How the fuck do I know.” I laugh, too, but not really; rubbing the back of my neck slow like you rub the neck of a dog. It feels good— the rubbing. I signal a waitress killing time near the bar. “She fucking… last week. No note, nothing. Typical Paula.” The girl comes over in that swig-swag way, short checked apron, square dance kind of white top gathered tight to show cleavage when she bends to take the drink order. “You, another?” she asks Mickey. He’s shaking his head stupidly. I’m watching him thinking: You cardiac guys, you’re supposed to stay pumped. No falling in love for half an hour. Not in this joint, anyway. The waitress saunters off. To Mickey I say, “Keep this to yourself. OK?” He puts out a hand in friendship. “Steady. Stea