The word of the week is key. I was going to use it in the traditional sense of an object used to unlock a door, safe deposit box or bicycle chain but none of that fit where I was in my snowstorm story that I am thinking of naming as my friend Iris suggested. Anyway, here’s this week’s offering and don’t forget the other fab authors and their tales here.
After a couple more hours of steady work filling orders, Lanett glanced up at the clock. Two a.m. She took another glance at the number of people still there. There were only a few people left but sadly, Nancy was among them. Lanett found herself wondering why the woman wouldn’t leave. Ian had made it perfectly clear that he had no interest in even chatting with the lady. If a man spoke to her like he had, Lanett would’ve gotten herself as far away as she could. No way would she throw herself at a man who put on every appearance of abhorring her.
Simon stepped over to Lanett’s side. “Do you know the key to clearing out this place, love?”
“Having never had to do so, I can’t say that I do.”
“Watch and learn, ducks, watch and learn.” Simon looked out over the people who obviously had nowhere else they needed to be and shouted, “Last call.”
Before Lanett could tell him how easy that seemed, a few men yelled back at him. “It’s too soon. You can’t close yet.”
“That didn’t work out as you planned, did it, brother?” Ian arrived at Simon’s other side.
“It will.” Simon picked up a bat from behind the counter and brandished it. “I own this place last I looked and I say it’s last call. Anyone who disagrees can take it up with me girl, Nellie, here.” He held the bat up in the air.
Some guy called out, “What do you know about baseball, you lousy Brit?”
“More than you’ll ever learn about cricket, Charlie. Now go home. That wife of yours probably wouldn’t like you so much with a dent in yer head from old Nell.”
“What about a beer before you maim me?” Charlie asked as the rest of his friends laughed.
“That was what last call meant, you stooge. One last beer before you go home. But not one that takes two hours to drink.” Simon grinned at the man who was clearly a regular since everything had been said in good humor.
“You ever known me to take even thirty minutes with one?”
Simon had put down Nellie and was loading beers onto a tray. He turned to Lanett. “Could you deliver these so we can at least get rid of that bunch? They live nearby and can walk home.”