A can of San Miguel
Her dress was too tight. She knew it, but thought Alex would be attracted to her curves and the three diamonds of pale flesh that he would see when she opened the door. She felt she might blush, but that also could be appealing; suggest that she was innocent of complicity, that seduction might be through innocence. After all he had refused when she had offered to meet him at the cinema, insisting on collecting her. Should he show the slightest sign of not wishing to watch a film, she would invite him in. With her parents away she had the house to herself. She had placed a bottle of red wine in the kitchen.
After checking the time she visited the bathroom. She took great care applying her lip gloss and touching up her eyes. Much of the time, she wore little make up but tonight she had made a special effort. As she re-sheathed the mascara brush, she heard the ring of the door bell.
Opening the door, her smile rapidly faded. ‘I … who are you?’
The youth smiled. From behind his back he withdrew a bouquet of spring flowers. ‘These are for Beatrice, from Alex, he’s sorry but he’s he been called home. His father has been taken ill.’
‘I’m Josh, Alex and I share a flat. If you particularly wanted to see the movie, perhaps I could take you?’
She smiled, took the flowers from him and breathed, ‘Come in … I’ll put them in water.’
He stood in the hallway while she hurried into the kitchen. Realising she had been rude, as soon as she had dunked the stems in the sink and added cold water, she dashed back. ‘I’m so sorry, please come into the lounge.’
She waved him to an armchair and said. ‘Would you like a drink?’
He checked his watch. ‘If we’re going to the cinema, we need to …’
‘Do you want to see the film?’ she asked.
‘I’ve already seen it,’ he mumbled.
‘Then let me get you a drink and we can sit and chat … unless you …’
He shook his head. ‘A drink would be lovely, thank you. Do you have any beer?’
Throughout their conversation, she noticed, he had not once looked into her face. Perhaps the dress would achieve its aim; after all he was an attractive, clean-looking young man. ‘I’ll go and see,’ she said.
About the author
This is Roger’s eighth year of submissions to Cafe Lit. His volume of flash fiction, Slimline Tales, has recently been published by Chapeltown Books.