Oh, god. She just stepped inside the shop and my heart is pounding. I know she'll talk to me. I know I'll act like before. But I...no...arghhh...need to change, dammit. I have to ask her.
Good thing I can act normal while this circus is going in my head, otherwise I'd be out of a job faster than you can open an automatic door.
"Hi," Gulp. Here she is, in front of me, with her radiant smile that belongs on TV.
"Hey. Haven't seen you recently." Nine days to be precise. Her red locks are still as silky as ever. Straight hair sure looks great on her.
"Yeah, well, I have some issues. I'm here now, though." Yes, you are.
"Oh, I hope they're being sorted."
"Eh..." Crap. I made her look back in anger.
"So, umm, what would you like?"
"A cider is fine today."
I go away as the tap is so far pushed in the back of the bar that it's basically a different bar altogether. Might as well give it a new name, but the manager doesn't want to. "Pay more taxes," he says. I turned around and facepalmed myself afterward. Didn't think he'd be lacking in the humour department.
Getting back to present, I bring her her pint in less than a minute.
"That was fast."
"It flows well. Four pounds, please."
"Here you go." She hands me a fiver. I put it through the till.
"Say," I go as I give her the pounds change. "Would you like to go out sometimes?"
Her face goes numb, as if she had been thunderstuck. "I, well, I have someone in my life. But thanks for thinking of me. I'm sure you'll find that person you're searching for." She smiled as she put the pound in her wallet, then nabbed the pint and went off, off, off into the wilderness.
Me? I felt awkward for the next hour or so. Ain't that a bitch?