Thursday, March 15, 2012

Short Story: "The Chase"

Okay, so it's been a weird day and I'm quickly running out of hours to get a blog post in, so out of desperation here's another short story I've written recently. More like a scene or a dialogue, actually. No, it's not based on my own life or the life of anyone I know. I made it all up. This one's a little happier than most of my pieces. I must have been having a good day when I wrote it. I dunno. Hope you enjoy!


"You may as well give up," she said, eyeing him with a look that left no room for dissent. "You're never going to catch me."

"I will if you'll just stop running," he pleaded.

"And where's the fun in that?" she answered.

"That's easy for you to say," he said, with an exasperated sigh.

"Yes, it is," she teased. With a quick wink, she took off again.

An after-work stroll around the lake had been her idea, and as it turned out, had been the perfect setting for a chase. They'd been at this for nearly an hour now.

The problem was simple, yet irresolvable. He wanted to kiss her, and she did not wish to be kissed. Normally, she didn't mind him kissing her; in fact, she liked it.

But he had been too wrapped up in his projects at work of late, and she had been feeling neglected. They hadn't even been on a date in months. Now he wanted to show his affection with cheap, easy physicality, and she wanted him to earn it.

"Okay, I'll let you kiss me," she said, smiling. The moment he leaned in toward her, she pulled back and put a finger to his lips. "But first, answer me this."

"Come on, why are you doing this to me?" he said. She frowned. Whininess did not become him.

"That's it precisely. Why am I doing this to you?" She tightened her smile, trying hard not to giggle, as that would ruin the moment.

"You're going to make me guess?" he said, incredulous.

"You shouldn't have to guess. You should already know," she replied.

"All right, all right, I'm sorry!" he said, thinking he'd be let off easy if he gave in.

"Sorry for what?" She giggled just a little, unable to suppress it any longer.

"Now you're mocking me!" he cried, with a hint of genuine anger in his voice. Better pull back just a little.

"I'm not mocking you. I just want to know why you're sorry.  Did you do something wrong?"

"I don't know," he said. "Did I?"

"What do you think?" She evened the tone of her voice, trying to sound neither flirty nor scolding.

"I think I probably did, seeing as how you won't let me kiss you."

She leaned forward and pecked him on the lips. Before he had time to respond, she pulled away again.

"I don't...what do – what's going on here?" He looked genuinely bemused.

"You said you wanted a kiss," she reasoned. "I gave you a kiss. What's the problem?"

"You didn't give me a chance to kiss you back."

"Sorry," she smiled, and walked away from him.

"Hang on a second," he called after her. "If you've got something on your mind, why don't you just say it?"

"Why did you marry me?" she blurted out, unable to think of a more gradual lead-in.

Taken aback, he approached her again, saying, "Where did that come from?"

"Just answer the question."

"Why did I marry you? Because I loved you. I mean, I still love you." He started to speak again, but seemed to have run out of words. He shrugged, appeared to be about to say something else, but stopped again.

"Anything else you want to add to that?" she asked, slightly arching an eyebrow.

"I...I married you because you were everything I had ever hoped for in a woman, and I wanted to spend the rest of my life with you."

"Doing what exactly?"

"Everything," he said simply, as though that were actually an answer. She waited. "You know, candlelight dinners, picnics in the park, romantic stuff like that. Like we used to do when we were dating."

"Like we used to do when we were dating," she repeated, nodding thoughtfully. "Interesting."

"Why do you say it like that?" He seemed to be catching on, at least a little.

"When's the last time we had one of those infamous picnics in the park?" Her intense stare challenged him to speak truthfully.

"I don't know exactly. It's been a while." He met her gaze, then looked away nervously. "Is that it? You wanna go on a picnic?"

"Not particularly," she replied simply, and softened her stare a little.

"You wanna have a candlelight dinner?" he tried.

"No, but you're getting warmer."

"A candlelight picnic, then?" Now he arched his eyebrows, and she couldn't help but laugh at the sight.

"You're silly," she said with a smile.

“What is it then?”

"I want us to spend more time with each other,” she stated. It doesn't matter what we're doing. We could be filing our taxes together for all I care – as long as we're together. I miss our 'us time.'"

"We have been kind of living separate lives for a while, haven't we?" he muttered. She nodded wryly. "I don't like that either."

"Then what are we going to do about it?" she said. "Your work projects are not simply going to go away."

"No," he replied, "but I don't have to spend as much time doing them. I can come home at a decent hour. We can actually have supper together for a change. And I can stop bringing my work home on the weekends, too. That'll give us more time for all those romantic candlelight picnics we're gonna have!"

She shoved him playfully, and laughed out loud for the first time in a long time.

He was not an easy laugher, but even he could not resist the silliness of the moment. Just like old times. "Now how about that kiss?"

She looked into his eyes, mulling over the question in her mind, and replied simply, "Maybe."

Then she took off again. And he pursued her.

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