Mitchell's Mustard Blog

December 28, 2010

Stood up? (my first attempt at a 1000 word short story)

Filed under: My Work — mitchellsmustard @ 11:01 am

 

It was a star lit evening in a snowy December and Thomas had made sure that his footwear was up to the task for the evening outing, standing outside a bar having a cigarette kicking the excess slushy enemy off his boots on a nearby post. He was one of the unlucky people who always slipped over in the snow, the kind of person that strangers laughed about for the rest of the day and told their friends after another arse over tit moment. Tonight was not the night for that as he was on a date so the nerves where running high and she was running late.

          Boots and skinny jeans is a good look for Thomas or so he told himself but there was always moments of doubt in his mind, first impressions with good shoes are a must according to his female friends and he had no reason to doubt their advice. It was cold and no matter how many times he wrapped his scarf a different way it didn’t change the chill on his neck, it got to the stage where he was playing with it because it was distracting him from the thought of being stood up. He could easily just ring her and see where she was but no one wants to sound too eager, he had looked at his phone so many times to see if he had a message or a missed call that he was sure that the Nokia would mock him if it could. With another 10 minutes passed and the heat from inside the bar had become inviting, if she finds it rude that Thomas has gone in for a drink on his own she can’t really have a corner to fight as she is over 45 minutes late.

           The bar was called The Watering Hole and it was a fond favourite to many, fronted with big heavy glass doors which didn’t really match the interior. It looked like an old style pub which had been taken over by a young couple, they had obviously decided to put bits of glass and chrome here and there to appeal to a younger generation but it failed and looked like a pub having a mid-life crisis. Made Thomas think of his aunt; she was knocking on a bit and was always trying far too hard to look young again. It opened up as you stepped in from the chill; a raised seating area filled with the better furniture took up the left side which was surrounded by a wooden banister to give the impression that it held some importance. To the right side was a carpeted area with over used padded stools and fruit machines for the young and hopeful, Thomas headed straight to the bar guided by a wooden runway towards the back of the room. people stared as his boots clunked along the wood, was it because he was making noise or did they all know his date was running late or even if she was running at all. Perhaps one of them knew something he didn’t.

          Another disappointed look at his phone and a mouthful of a pint before he made the decision to leave his coat on so when she does appear it looks like he hadn’t been there long, his heart pounded as he heard the door open but with a quick turn the sight of a couple coming in laughing and joking made him swear under his breath and turn back to the bar. This young couple came and stood next to Thomas at the bar whilst they ordered their drinks; they looked happy and in love which made Thomas a little bitter so he took another look at his phone. Listening into their conversation of how their meal was amazing and how they were pleased that they decided to go for a drink afterwards. They got their drinks and moved to seats on the raised platform for a little more flirting, the two thoughts that went through Thomas’s mind where some blokes get all the luck and maybe it was time for another pint.

          3 pints later the coat and scarf where off, the stool that he had acquired was becoming quite comfortable and the stares weren’t as intimidating as before. The thoughts of how the night could have gone if she had decided to turn up crept into his head but he decided to swallow them back with more beer, the 20 deck of Bensons was starting to feel light as well as his wallet and head. He knew that he could have started to catch feelings for her because she seemed so perfect, adorable and beautiful and Thomas always questioned what she saw in him. Perhaps she had seen sense and was out with someone of her own league, someone funny and charming because that’s what she deserved. He started to understand why she had stood him up and why he was sitting in this bar alone, some things are too good to be true. Turning on his stool to look at the young couple from earlier enjoying their conversation, they were slowly edging towards each other around the table to share a little body heat but in Thomas’s jealous not so sober mind he pictured the bloke stroking her hand while she was fluttering her eyelashes like in some animated love scene. What has he got that I haven’t Thomas thought to himself, what has all the men in this town got that I haven’t and the only answer he could come up with was that he didn’t have a date for the evening.

          Time to leave because the beer wasn’t helping the confidence and his mind was playing games on him, he didn’t even bother to turn and look at the door when it opened anymore because his heart was bored with jumping for nothing. Once again the coat and scarf where on and the wooden runway banged like a heartbeat under his boots, the big glass door seemed heavier than before and the street outside seemed colder. The slow walk home was a death trap but one good thing to come from the night was that Thomas reached his front door without slipping over, cold flat, cold sheets and a cold night’s sleep.

          A loud beep of his phone woke Thomas, realising that he had fallen asleep with his phone in his hand. He had fought the temptation of texting her when he got in to bed that the argument with himself on this matter had sent him to sleep, with dazed eyes and a sore head he focused on the screen of the phone that had been mocking him the night before and noticed it was a text message from Jessica. His heart jumped a little, maybe it was an apology for standing him up or maybe it was to ask for him not to text or ring her again. He opened the message with baited eyes and it read . . . .

‘Hey I hope you’re looking forward to tonight because I am xx’

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