Please Close The Casket

“I hope you don’t take this the wrong way, but you look like death,” Holly delivered the information with a bright smile that was meant to lessen the blow.

It was the last Sunday of February, and the best friends were seated on their favorite bench next to the river.

“How is it even possible to take that incorrectly?” Aaron questioned.  “There’s no way that resembling death is a compliment.  I’m sorry I don’t look beautiful like you.  We can’t all win the genetic lottery.”

He washed down his bitterness with a big gulp of his Snapple.

short story, humor, Modern PhilosopherHolly blushed.  “Do you really think I’m beautiful?”  Then she pretended to swoon.

“You’re so annoying,” he informed her.   “I hope you don’t take that the wrong way.”

She flipped him the bird and took a sip of her coffee.  “It’s not my fault that I know how to push your buttons.  You’re the one who’s made it obvious which buttons annoy you the most.  So why do you look so horrible?”

“I have a cold,” he admitted.  “Nothing major, but just annoying enough to make me cough constantly and interrupt my sleep.  I’m spitting up much more phlegm than venom these days.”

Holly made a face and took another drink of coffee.  “I know you hate going to the doctor, but have you at least done something to fight off the yuck?”

“Of course,” he answered quickly because he was proud of himself.  “I bought cough medicine, cough drops, soup, and ginger ale.  I’ve postponed running for the last couple of days and have spent most of my time on the couch.”

“It doesn’t seem to be working, you know, seeing as how you look like you rolled out of your casket to meet me here,” she quipped with a chuckle.

Aaron gave her the evil eye as he took a long sip of his iced tea.

short story, mystery, Modern Philosopher“I’m actually feeling much better,” he replied defensively.  “I might not be sleeping well, but at least the coughing has decreased.  I was losing my voice for a while, but it seems fine now.”

“That must have been tough for you,” she countered.  “I know how much you love the sound of your own voice.”

He threw up his arms in surrender.  “Why are you coming after me so hard this morning?  Did I do something to offend you, but not remember it?”

She shook her head.  “It just pisses me off that you didn’t let me know you’re sick.  I could have checked on you, made you some soup, maybe brought you something heartier to eat.  But you don’t tell me anything, and simply show up at our weekly chat looking like the walking dead.”

“I apologize for not burdening you with my medical woes,” he said sincerely.  “I knew you’d want to come over and I didn’t want you to get sick.”

“But sitting next to me on this bench is okay?” she challenged.

Aaron hung his head.  “I can’t win.  If I don’t call you, I’m wrong.  If I show up to meet you, I’m wrong.”

Holly chuckled and punched him playfully in the shoulder.  “I’m just pushing your buttons again.  Showing you that I don’t treat you any differently when you look like worm food.”

“You better hope I don’t die first because I will come back to haunt you,” he threatened.  “And I’m going to make sure I’m one of those gross Beetlejuice looking ghosts that leaves ooze and body parts behind.”

“So it will just be like any other time you’ve come over my house to visit,” she laughed.

Aaron let out a long cough, took a sip of his Snapple, and turned his attention to the river.  “You’re not at witty as you think,” he advised her without looking in her direction.

“I’m just witty enough to get under your skin, and that’s all that matters.”

She smiled smugly and stared out at the water.

About Austin

Native New Yorker who's fled to the quiet life in Maine. I write movies, root for the Yankees, and shovel lots of snow.
This entry was posted in Humor and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Please Close The Casket

  1. kristianw84 says:

    Hahaha!!! This gave me a good chuckle. I adore Holly!

  2. markbialczak says:

    I hope Aaron and Austin feel better!

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