Friday, August 23, 2013

Shotgun Writing.

Wrote this while sitting idle on a city bus:
He rolled the coin between forefinger and thumb. Both sides tails. You ask most people ‘heads or tails’ and they’ll answer ‘heads,’ it’s less effort, slides off the tongue quicker. But he hadn’t been able to use it. He cut off another bite of warm roast lamb, tender but the knife still squeaked on the plate. If he could only think, he didn’t do this in such loud places. They could barely hear each other think. As far as he knew there were two options left, he could run, knock his chair back as he rose, cause a scene, hope he gets arrested. Or he could try one last game, he still remembered back when he would play chess with the homeless men in the park, back when games with multiple outcomes still held their novelty. He followed the man's tie up his chest, past the thick jowls and a single bead of sweat, until their eyes met. That short smile stabbed like a knife. Now was his chance.
“I want to bet you one last thing,”
Laughter, hoarse and spluttered. “You don’t have anything left to offer,”
“Yes, but you couldn’t live with yourself, having won like this. You win this wager and you’ll be able to sleep easy, knowing you beat me”
He pushed a chorizo into his mouth as an abusive husband would his arm. “What makes you think I have the pride?”
“The first bet is against yourself, if I lose, I concede, if I win, I get your watch, I will then bet you your watch against your wallet, if I lose it’s for good. I will then bet your watch and your wallet against your gun.”
Silence, like being tied up in rope. If he breaks it, he knows he’s dead. Then, “What’s the bet?”
“Heads or tails?” Laughter “From your wallet.” The man opposite him chuckled in a way better resembling spitting. He stood slightly and fished for his wallet. Produced it and pulled out a single coin which didn’t look like any coin he had ever seen before, it was enormous, made of a thin copper. The man opposite rolled it to show each side. Then threw it in one large flip. Now.
His eyes followed the coin in midair. As it began to fall the man opposite prepared his hand. He rose, took his plate of roast lamb and vegetables and threw it into the man face. Then he ran.

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