The afternoon sky was crisp, but had little bite. A plume of smoke escaped Adam’s mouth as he lit the end of his cigarette. He sat down, outside of the coffee shop, in faded jeans, a faded shirt and a faded state of mind. His radiant hazel eyes were squinting as the shadows of the trees danced on his brow. He tilted his head back and blew a cloud of smoke into the otherwise cloudless sky.
Adam sat at the table of the coffee shop and held his cup of coffee in his right hand. He was, by every sense of the word, an attractive man. His green eyes had a feline quality to them. They didn’t glow in the dark, but they seemed to glow while you talked to him. They were definitely more green than yellow, which held the intrigue much longer. He was tall and thin. He was not overly tall. Slightly taller than average. He also wasn’t thinner than normal. He wasn’t built, but he was not skin and bones. His hair was a sandy blond. He had it described to him as dirty blond before. He wore it longer, and parted down the middle. His jaw was squared, but did not impose or jut out and his full lips were framed by two dimples.
He took his coffee and put it over his bottom full lip and sipped slowly, careful not to burn his mouth or tongue. He took his coffee black. Like many things in his life it was minimalistic. He didn’t see the need to add cream or sugar to something that was already flavored. He thought that the flavor of the coffee was enough to sustain the product, so why add to it? Why add cost? Why add calories? Why add sugar?
He put the coffee down, crossed his legs, dragged his cigarette and ran his right hand through his hair, getting the stray strands out of his eyes. He was sitting across from his best friend, Miles. Miles had a normal build. He was average height, average weight, average looking and below average mannered. He had short hair that was perpetually made to look like he had just gotten out of bed. He had a thick beard, about two inches in length that was mostly tinged with red. He wore a black, faded, NOFX T-shirt and an old pair of jeans. He grabbed a pack of cigarettes from the table and ripped one from the pack and in one motion lit it and exhaled a tremendous cloud of smoke in Adam’s direction. Adam simply moved his head from the smoke and picked up his coffee and slurped from the lid.
“So, what went wrong?” asked Miles. Adam regained his focus and looked at Miles and raised an eyebrow.
“What’d you say, dude?” He asked.
“Jesus, space camp. I just asked what went wrong.” Miles said.
“With?” Adam asked. Miles slapped his forehead and shook his head.
“Christ almighty, man. You alright?”
“Well, yeah. Kind of. I’m a little high.” Said Adam.
“I don’t know how you can do that shit before a funeral. I know this is pretty messed up, but even I have limits.” Miles said jokingly. Adam laughed.
“I really don’t know how you can go to this without getting high. Drunk at least. Jesus, this is going to suck.”
“Right that’s why I asked you what went wrong.” Miles said.
“I don’t really know.” Adam shrugged.
“Didn’t you still talk to her?”
“Yeah, well no. I haven’t really talked to her in like six, seven, eight months. Since before that first time she tried.”
“Shit, that’s right. I almost forgot about that.”
“Right. Last time I talked to her she was doing pretty good. I mean as good as she can do. She was always kind of damaged, I guess, but she seemed stable. Stable enough.”
“She was always kind of a crazy bitch.” Miles interrupted. “Then again, I am pretty convinced that all women are crazy. There might just be levels of craziness. It might have to do with hotness too. Like, I think the hotter the woman is the crazier she just might be. Like you know supermodels are just raging pyschos. But you are willing to put up with it, because they are fire ass hot.”
“Right?” Adam said.
“Right. As long as she puts out, let’s say a reasonable two to three times a week, you can put up with almost anything, man. I’m not even sure that the sex has to be anything good or even that special to be honest. Just the mere idea that you are nailing this fire ass, hot broad, is reason enough to put up with her insane bullshit. I think she could literally be yelling at you one second about some stupid, irrational load of shit and then the next second could be standing in front of you topless, with perky titties, and all the anxieties and shitty feelings about her being crazy would go by the wayside, because a super-hot, piece of ass would be standing in front of you with her titties out.”
“You have a way of putting things, Miles.” Adam said. Miles took a drag of cigarette and put his hands up feigning humility.
“I don’t think I’m the only one who thinks this way, man.” He said.
“No, I don’t think you are. Any time there are set of tits in your face, it’s hard to see the craziness inside a girl.”
“God damned right. You know that shit works the other way around too.” Miles said. Adam squinted back at him as the shadows continued to dance on his forehead.
“What do you mean? Guys aren’t as crazy as women are.”
“You got that right!” Miles pointed a finger at Adam. “We definitely aren’t as crazy. Some might be aggressive, some might be conservative, and some might be just general assholes. But there are some guys who are just dumber than shit.”
“Just some?” Adam said while pointing at Miles.
“What’s that supposed to mean?” He quipped back.
“Exactly!” Adam laughed.
“These guys are so effing stupid. And I mean stupid. Not, ‘I didn’t study and failed the test stupid,’ but s-t-o-o-p-i-d, stupid. No common sense. None whatsoever. If you dropped them in the woods, or south of 96th street they would be dead in minutes.”
“That’s pretty stupid.”
“No kidding, right. But it’s just like the crazy woman thing. If this dumbass is a beautiful man, with rock-hard abs, a flashy smile and an average to an above average wiener, girls will forget how stupid he is as long as he puts out a reasonable two to three times a week and stands in front of them with his pecs hanging out all rock-hard and sweaty, with his small man nipples.”
“What is wrong with you?” Adam asked Miles.
“Nothing, man. You don’t think about this shit ever?”
“No, not really as much as you do.”
“That reminds me. You never answered my question.”
“Which question?” asked Adam.
“What the hell went wrong.”
“Dude, I did answer you and then you went into this whole diatribe about crazy women and men’s sweaty chests.”
“First of all, I was talking about titties. Let’s get that clear. I was talking about men’s sweaty chests. I mentioned them, but I clearly talked about titties a lot more.”
“Fair enough.” Adam squinted back at Miles and sipped his coffee.
“So?” Miles asked demonstratively with his hands out.
“I just told you that I really don’t know. I hadn’t talked to her in a while.”
“Shit, you’re right. You did just say that. Sorry, man. Sometimes my mind just wanders. It’s kind of like swiss cheese up there.”
“I’ve noticed. And I’m the high one.” They both laughed. They both sat a moment and each of them lit a cigarette. Adam eloquently blew his smoke to the side and Miles blew his in the direction of Adam again. Adam leaned his head to the side to avoid the cloud.
“Were there any warning signs?” Miles asked.
“Yeah, warning signs from her. Before the first time or just in general. Did you see this coming?” Miles asked while exhaling another big cloud of smoke. Adam’s squinted eyes looked up and past Miles and he ran his fingers through his dirty blond hair.
“Dude, I don’t really know. She was always a strange girl. That’s totally why I went after her at first. She just had that mysterious quality, you know? She had this look in her eyes that she was always one step ahead of you and it just intrigued me. Her eyes always looked like they were figuring something out, like they were solving a problem or dissecting you. I never felt like she was tearing me down with the look, but seriously looking deep inside me. I think that’s why at first I felt connected to her.
“After a few weeks or a month or so she told me that her dad died before she was born and she always had blamed her mom for his death. She said she felt this huge connection to him, even though they had never met and she could never stand to be in the same room as her mom. She explained to me how her mom would just bounce around between women and criminals and then back to women and that she essentially grew up alone. The last guy that her mom was with had also died and that was the last person that she had grown close to.
“It was then that I noticed her eyes had changed. And you know, maybe they hadn’t changed, but my perception of them had definitely changed. Instead of seeing these eyes that were inquisitive and full of mystery, I saw these eyes that were listless and full of pain. It was like she would look through me, you know? Instead of dissecting me, I’m not sure she knew I was there. Towards the end of our relationship I was more of a buddy that would come over high and watch TV.” Adam took a drag and put his cigarette out.
“So, in a simple word, yes.” Miles said while raising an eyebrow.
Please to enjoy.