Memory

Reads: 237  | Likes: 2  | Shelves: 0  | Comments: 0

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

More Details
Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic
Done as an entry to a contest whereby a character meets an old acquaintance at a bar. Max 1000 words.

Submitted: January 29, 2019

A A A | A A A

Submitted: January 29, 2019

A A A

A A A


Memory
 

Jensen's aged fingers coiled slowly along the amber filled glass, not to drink, but to once more taste the bitterness of the whiskey on his tongue. It was his fourth tonight, but Jeb, the bartender took pity on the old man and without prompting, filled it one more time before just leaving the bottle.

Everyone in the small town knew the story, how Jensen's wife of thirty five long years had disappeared from the very bar that he now sat at. Many rumors and whispers floated through the knitting circles that she left him for a younger man, or worse, that Jensen himself had done the deed. Jeb should have known better though as the night she disappeared, he and Jensen had been out on the lake fishing'.

Sad thing about the truth is that the truth never stopped some people believing the negative about Jensen and over the years following, people gave the man a wide berth and an entire bottle for his problems; the thought being he couldn't harm anyone, drunker than a skunk. Jeb saw it change the laugh-lines on Jensen's features to ones of bitterness as drink after drink, the poor heartbroken man hid himself in a bottle. Living without her had done more to harm the man than any retribution the town might think was due him.

Jeb frowned slowly as he finished cleaning a glass and tucked the towel away into the wash bin. “I'm gonna go into the back a moment, then after I lock up, I'll take you home.”


Jensen grunted with a solemn nod, not budging from his seat. “Fine.”

Jeb shook his head, took one more look to his buddy and reluctantly left the old man alone to tend his duties. “Closing up folks, time to head on out. “

Jensen barely stirred as folk began to slowly leave. His head lifted to see Jeb dip to the back and let his shoulders droop. His fingers rolled the last drops of whiskey over the fading ice cubes before he lifted it in solemn salute to the pictures on the wall behind the bar. His eyes caught on the image of him and his wife, sitting aside his harley as one of the first patrons when Jeb first opened The Drunken Dutchmen.. They had all been so young then. He knocked back the last swing hard and settled into his seat to wait for Jeb to return.

The bell rang behind him, but he didn't turn, instead giving out a gruff. “Bar's closed, get lost.” He resettled himself on the seat as if making it loud and clear whomever it was better get gone. His hand reached up to rub lightly at his ribs as a bit of heartburn began to plague him. He grunted again as he lowered his hand and began to lift his arm to pillow his head on his arm. He hoped whomever had came in would get the hint to leave and gave out a slow yawn.

He was nearly asleep when it occurred to him that he hadn't heard the bell again to signal whomever it was had left, he turned. His head tilted to the side as his gaze moved back and forth from the empty doorway to the rest of the bar and back again. “Oye, this ain't funny none.” His words slurred. He scowled and convinced himself it must have been the wind, that is until he turned back to the bar and saw her. The word caught in his throat, the word he thought he would never again get to utter. He gaped, dumbfounded in his drunken stupor. “Debby?” His head then shook the young woman before him, couldn't possibly be her.

Without thinking, he grabbed the bottle and a glass behind the bar for her. “Here love.” He would nudge the glass towards her. “One for the road.”

She leaned against the bar casually with one arm, resting behind her as she side glanced over him, the way she always use to whenever she had come to fetch him from a night out with the boys. Her thick red lipstick leaving a perfect kiss on the glass as she drank down that burning amber with a flick of her hair. Her sharp eyes then turned to him with a smirk as she set down the glass without the smallest hint of a wince at the burn. Her long fingertips stretched across the leather of his riding jacket, to rest upon his arm with a gentle grip. “Time to come home.”

Jensen wanted to believe, with all his heart he wanted to believe that she was really there. The air stung his eyes but he masked it behind a yawn and rub of sleep. She smiled gently to him as he let himself be poured from the stool into her waiting arms. “Okay.”

The bell rang again and Jeb, fearing the drunken bastard had gotten impatient, quickly hurried back out front with his jacket and keys. “Damnit Jensen, I'm coming.” He looked out the windows but the gravel road was dark and no cars insight but his and Jensen's bike. He scowled, confused. Hoping that Jensen was just outside having a cig or something stronger; but Jeb couldn't smell that distinctive odor. He wandered to the door for a better look, but the roadway was empty and Jensen was no where to be seen. “Better not have wandered off, I ain't fishing him out of the lake again.”

Jeb turned to the bar to do one more look over only to stumble upon his breath at seeing his old friend face down on the floor. He rushed to Jensen but it was too late, the heartbeat was already stilled beneath his fingertips. Jeb stood up quickly to race to the phone behind the bar, but as he went to pick up the receiver his eyes caught onto the bright crimson lip print on a glass he had not, set out.


© Copyright 2020 Aranea. All rights reserved.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

Add Your Comments: