His cowboy hat was askew and she had nothing in common with him. As far as she could see. Which would have been fine, except it mattered: she wanted to be in a relationship.
She looked idly up at the Christmas lights hanging from the ceiling. If people keep decorating seasonally and leaving it up because it looks good, where will this all end?
“Hi”, he said.
“Hi!” she gasped, squashing a sudden jangle of nerves and giving him her flirtatious look: a smile that went full-out in her eyes but didn’t fully reach her mouth. To add allure.
“I was going to rob this place, but then I saw you and changed my mind,” he said.
He grinned at her and showed her a gun tucked under his jacket. “You made me change my mind. You’re interesting.”
“You’re scaring me,” she said, looking down the bar for the tender, who had disappeared into the back a couple minutes ago and hadn’t yet come back.
The light went out in his eyes. “Huh,” he said, and turned away, back to his beer and whatever was on TV.
She sat stone-still. Moments passed. The bartender came back. Cowboy Man picked up his gun and slid it back into his holster casually as he said, “Hey Jess, what’s up?”
Jess-the-Bartender shrugged. “Not much, man.” They started talking about the game on the TV.
Waaait. He’d been kidding, hadn’t he? Had to be. Here was a guy who’d maybe just done something interesting, y’know, not the normal pickup line. Startling. Surprising. And she’d been… scared of him. Shit.
But try as she might, now she could get neither Cowboy’s nor Jess’s attention. After several minutes, she finally left, confused, feeling stupid, alone.
March 19th through the 23rd–the third week of the third month of 2012–is flash fiction week on the Nose. All stories to have three characters and top out at 300 words.