Saturday, September 11, 2010

A Mews Me

Interior. Restaurant. Evening.

—But you said you had enough to pay.
—I know I said it. I lied.
—But why did you lie?
—So that we’d have to. We’d have no choice.*
She looks seriously at him, then turns and looks around the busy restaurant. She glances back at him then puts her hands over her face and sighs.
—Someone I know went to prison for doing this.
—Yeah, well, a friend of mine went to prison for smoking dope but that doesn’t stop anyone doing it.
He laughs through his nose as if it’s funny.
—Who do you know?
—Well, no one actually, but it happens. It’s illegal.
She starts laughing, then so does he.
—Look Rachel, think in your head about doing it. Act the entire operation out in your head and—
—God! You’re really going to do it aren’t you?
—Of course I am. It’s no big deal. Think about doing it. Is your heart beating faster? Does it turn you on?
—Why is everything about sex with you?
—I didn’t mean that. I just meant… it’s exciting. I think everyone should do one stupid act a month to stay sane.
—I have to go to the toilet. Don’t go anywhere.
He watches her as she gets up and walks over to the toilet. He makes a roll-up cigarette which takes him about four minutes. He just doesn’t have the knack. But when she comes back his coat is on and he’s smoking the cigarette.**
—Come on. Let’s go. Now.
—Mark, no I can’t. I can’t run fast in these shoes.
—We don’t run until we’re out of the restaurant. You see that mews over there?
—That what? Where?
—That mews, over the road, to the right.
He points to it.
—Oh. Mews.
—We’ll run over there. As soon as we’re out of the restaurant.
—Come on. I’m walking now. No one’s looking.
He gets up and casually walks out of the restaurant. She picks up her coat, looking around and almost runs after Mark.

*This was possibly written in the days before debit cards; we were poor students and usually paid for things with cash. I've still never had a credit card.

**One could also smoke in restaurants.

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