I’m still trying to establish myself as a writer in my hometown of Orlando; however I am a lover of the short story format. I’m a published author with a book of stories and poems out now through Amazon and Barnes and Nobles title Pieces of Me. Here’s one of my stories I hope you enjoy it enjoy to comeback and follow more of my work!
“The Coffee Shop”
She was sitting there again like a gentle breeze flowing in the wind when he walked in the coffee shop. He eyes immediately grazed upon her ever so slowly and spotted her sitting in the corner instantly. Adjusting her glasses, she noticed him as well. The tension was felt between the two. They’ve played this game of cat and mouse for weeks, neither one dared to speak just a glance here and there.
Boom, boom, boom…went her heart. Turning the page in her book, trying to seem interested in Rebecca a novel she’s read a million times. Grabbing her latte from the table beside her, taking a sip—it was cold.
He smiled and went to the register.
She remained silently still in her position, showing no expression returning back to the book. Realizing that she would need to get up from a refill, then deciding to wait. There was no way she could speak to this man. He was too handsome in his khaki pants; red cable knit sweater and thin blue jacket. The reflection he preceded wasn’t the heart he held. It was frail, timid and saddening. The same as hers…but she wasn’t aware of that.
Observing her movements out of the corner of his eye, his nerves begun to quake at her very sight. An odd complexity given his physical stature was so tall, broad and muscular. Feeling her survey him from behind he smiled at the barista and ordered his usual.
“Tall house blend, please and keep the change.” Handing her crisp ten-dollar bill, he decided to sit today. It was a slow day at the office. The short spiky haired brunette barista returned moments later with his piping hot house blend. He nodded thanks again, and then headed over to the condiment counter to add his one creamer and three sugars. After fixing his coffee just right, he grabbed a seat at the table by the window. It was starting to snow a little outside and this time of year always made him sad. Sweet November, Maria died around this time two years ago. The death of his wife Maria caused him to become a recluse for a while. Maria was the soft wind against his cheek, the smile on his face when she spoke. Cancer took her from the earth’s presence and left Mark flowing in a trance every since the soil covered her remains. Until he spotted the beauty in the coffee shop with the pensive look concentrating on the different novels she read. He needed saving and yet the beauty he admired in the wind needed salvation from herself. As he stay gazing out the window thinking about Maria, he noticed the beauty with the book motion to the counter to get a refill. Taking a chance he gets up to say hello.
A gentle tap on her shoulder.
“Hi, I’m Mark.” He said with a casual smile that made her stomach churn with nervousness.
“Hello—I’m Naomi.” She said as the spiky haired brunette looked on annoyed waited for someone to order.
“I noticed you here often and I would like to buy you a cup of coffee.” He said handing the annoyed barista another ten-dollar bill, before Naomi could interject a response.
“Well, now I’m indebted to you Mark thanks.”
“The same ma’am?” the barista said as Naomi handed her the cup.
“Ummm—Yes with soy please.” Trying to figure out what else to say to the handsome stranger, who just did a kind deed. “Thanks—Umm…Mark?”
“Yes and please join me.” He say as the barista came back with the coffee he motioned again for her to keep the change, which put a smile on her previously unhappy face.
“I guess for a minute.” Then they walked over to the cozy chairs in the corner where she always sat. They were both nervous, but he took a leap by talking to her at all and that made him smile.
“What’s so funny?” she inquired.
“I don’t know, if you know this but I have been gaining the courage to come over and speak with you for weeks now. But you are always so focused on your books.” Naomi smiled in returned, so he had noticed her as well she thought. She wouldn’t be as bold enough to admit as much to him.
“No, I hadn’t noticed that.” She lied and her cheeks flushed revealing her truth. Taking a sip of her college it was nice of him to buy her refill, but coffee and small talk was all she could offer.
“How long have you been coming here?” he pressed.
“Since grad school. I’m working on my Ph.D. in counseling.” Replying as he admired her dark hair and olive tone skin, considering her low self confidence internally she was dressed nicely in jeans, leather ankle boots and a pale pink sweater. She was a very beautiful woman, someone he would really like to get to know better; however this was as far as he could go now.
“You seem like the educated type, I always see you with a book.” He said.
“Books don’t turn on you.” She said sipping her coffee again, his presence was making her uncomfortable.
“Why do you say that?”
“It’s a cold world and people are cruel.” She said matter of fact. “I’ve had to learn the hard way.”
“I suppose you are right.” He agreed and she begun to pack up her things. “Leaving so soon?”
“Yes, I’m a student teacher and I have to be there in thirty minutes.” She added, “Thanks for the coffee Mark.” Then she grabbed her purse and bag a stood to leave.
“It was all my pleasure Naomi, until next time?”
“Maybe” She smiled as she walked past him and that was that. He was happy and a bit shocked that he spoke to the beauty in the coffee shop. Even though it was a brief conversation it was better than anything he had experienced in the two years since Maria’s passing and it was also rewarding for Naomi. She walked away with a smile.
© 2014 Elle Henry
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