Here's To 'Forget'

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Commercial Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
When drinking to obliterate doesn't quite work out as planned.

Submitted: June 26, 2017

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Submitted: June 26, 2017



Here’s To ‘Forget’


She sees him sitting at the bar. He’s been there a while form the looks of things. A couple of empty glasses stand by his arm. Is the barman slacking, taking his time? She watches surreptitiously as he tips up his glass, downs it in one big swallow. Not the barman, then; this guy is clearly going for obliteration.


He makes another order, then, while he is waiting, heads off to the rest room. He’s walking remarkably steadily. Perhaps this is something he’s used to doing, or maybe the alcohol hasn’t yet had time to take full effect. Obviously he is planning to return – he’s just made another order after all.


She makes her move while he's away, taking the seat next to his. She orders some obscure cocktail but the barman knows his stuff and doesn’t blink an eye. He just takes down one bottle than another, adds a measure of this and that, and she hands over the cash. When he returns she ’t even look up.


Neither he nor the barman can be aware of her interest, not this early. She takes out her phone, makes a show of checking her messages and sighs when there is not even one. she knows that. herself, downs her cocktail and orders another.


She weighs him up, looking just from the corner of her eye. He’s upset, that’s clear. His eyes are red, some of it from the effects of the drink but he also looks pretty close to tears. For her plans, he is perfect.


She empties her glass at almost the exact time that he does. He orders another, and taking a quick glance in her direction adds, “One for the lady, and one for yourself.” When he pays she can’t help noticing that his wallet is almost bulging with cash.


Don’t you just hate them?” she dares to say. “Partners that take advantage, play around behind your back then dump you.” She hoped she was reading the signs right, that he was not bereaved, otherwise she had just blown everything.


You, too?” He stares into his glass as though she is inside there, then glances quickly at her.


She nods but does not want to say more. She’ll just look tearful, hurt. Betrayed is the image she wants to display. But it’s best if she does not go into any details. She’ll let him talk, that’s what he really wants to do, and she’ll show every sympathy; she won’t really listen, she won’t need to know.


She buys the next round. She can hold her drink. It’s how she makes her living, after all; and the cocktails she drinks are nowhere near as strong as they look. It’s almost time to spring her trap, she’d just let him finish this drink.


Look, I don’t normally do this sort of thing,” she lied, “but why don’t you come home with me? We could both do with a bit of company.”


He looked at her, not answering. He ordered them each another drink. “Cheers!” he said. “Here’s to ‘forget’.” She raised her glass and they both tapped their glasses together.


She put her arm through his. It was impossible not to notice how unsteady on his feet he had now become. He’d be out for the count as soon as they arrived in her flat. She’d relieve his wallet of some of that excessive cash, not all of it, but enough. And while she was doing that she’d get his address.


A cab would take him home, she knew where to send it. And he would not remember her the following day, or even anything else about this night. He might not forget his lost lover but he would forget the one that never was.



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