Short Cut to Love
Tanya Templeton’s slender fingers grip the dirty door handle to the Last Chance Corral. She yanks the door open. It slams behind her.
Heads turn to watch her long blonde hair sway as she wiggles across the room and sits at the bar. Her piercing blue eyes study other patrons whose elbows rest on the hard surface.
“The usual?” Kurt, the bartender, asks grabbing a glass.
“Yea, a double. Who’s the dude?”
“You mean, the guy hound dogging you?”
Tanya smiles, shoots a look the man’s way, and runs her tongue around her lips like she’s ready to lick a lollipop.
“Don’t get carried away, it’s early you know,” says Kurt.
“Not early enough?” Tanya laments. “What’s vibrating? Oh, my cell. . .” She tosses her streaked hair, and checks the phone screen.
“It’s not love calling,” she says, then squeezes the phone back into her pant pocket.
When she slides the bar stool in closer, the metal scrapes the floor with an alarming sound.
“What’s his name wants to buy you drinks.” The bartender points his chin in the right direction. “Or are you running a tap?”
“Does he have a name?”
Instead of listen to Kurt’s reply, she slaps a ten-dollar bill on the bar like a husband slamming a pink slip down on the kitchen table, and sashays across the room, thumbs inside her belt loops.
“I’m Tanya, you must be . . .?”
“Damn woman, looking at you I can’t remember much, especially my name.”
“Well, you don’t mind being called Dean, do you? I once had a boyfriend named Dean, lived in the panhandle. . . Apalachicola. . . ever been there? You gotta love oysters to live there.”
She studies the creases in his worn jeans.
“Dean suits me fine. I’ve passed through Apalachicola many times hauling lumber. These days’ runs keep me traveling the interstate.” He smiles with his eyes. “I’ve been dreaming about oysters.”
Tanya toys with his body using her mind and quips, “Glad you have a sense of humor. You’ll need one.”
After the small talk and learning nothing about themselves or each other, they saunter out together looking for the short cut to love.
. . . just saying
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