Friday, October 7, 2011

Interlude Stories - John Weagly

LONG BLACK GLOVES - JOHN WEAGLY

She wore long black gloves, satin accessories that came up past her elbows, smooth and glossy to the touch. Refined. Exotic. Distinct.

I met her in the L & L Tavern on Clark Street, a dark, smoky place with Formica tables, wooden chairs, cheap drinks and a quiet but clear sense of despair. She was sitting at the bar.

I sat down on the stool next to her. She gave me a dry smile. “Buy me a drink?” she asked.

She seemed like she was already halfway there. “Of course,” I said.

We drank, Jameson for her and Johnnie Walker Black for me. Neil Young’s “Unknown Legend” played on the jukebox. After a couple of rounds, she asked, “Do you like my gloves?”

“Sure,” I said. “I love your gloves.”

“Fancy, aren’t they?”

“Elegant,” I said. “What’s the occasion? Are you going to the opera? Or a high society ball? Or a party at an embassy?”

“I just like wearing long, black gloves.”

“That’s fair,” I said.

“You like the way they rest on my skin? If we go somewhere, you can take them off. You can slide them down my arms, past my wrists, over my hands. Do it slow, like a ritual – methodical, leisurely, deliberate.”

“How much would something like that cost?” I asked.

“I’m not a hooker. I just feel like being with somebody.”

“Lonely?”

“Who isn’t?” she said.

I took her home. We fumbled around on each other. Her satin hands added an interesting element to our activities. After we finished, she told me a story about a boy and a waterfront and a mugging gone bad. The boy in the story liked long, black gloves. Then, in the night as I slept, she showed herself out.

The next evening I went back to L & L. My paramour was in the same spot at the bar, gloves and all. I sat next to her. “Did you spend it all?” I asked.

“Hi,” she said.

“Did you spend my twelve dollars?”

“I did,” she said. Her satin-tipped finger made small circles on the bar. “I did spend your twelve dollars. Cab fare.”

“My fortune.”

“Sorry. It’s all gone.”

“Thanks for leaving the wallet. And the credit cards.”

“What would I do with your credit cards?” She took her smooth, silky hand and placed it on top of mine on the bar. It felt like a cool breeze from far away. “Thanks,” she said.

“Buy you a drink?” I asked.

“Of course.”

Our drinks came. We sat in silence for a moment while we appreciated them.

“Did it help?” I asked. “Last night. Did it help any?”

“Not really,” she said. “Maybe a little, but not enough.” She sipped her whiskey. “Still think I’m fancy?” she asked.

“Elegant,” I told her.

At a table near the back, a woman laughed. “You didn’t make me an omelette,” she cackled. “You never made me an omelette.” Her laughter sounded like glass breaking.

BIO: John Weagly’s new short story collection, A BUCKET OF BOOBS, is now available on Kindle and other devices. Check out www.JohnWeagly.com for more information.

3 comments:

ajhayes2 said...

Plays soft and sad like a dark water blues driftin' like smoke across the river. Cool.

pattinase (abbott) said...

This is so sad, John. Just so sad.

Chris Rhatigan said...

Damn. That is so smoothly tragic. Fantastic atmosphere and that counterintuitive last line is sheer brilliance.