Ritual

It had been a very long day. He had decided a drink was in order, so he stopped by a pub on the way home. The stools at the bar were empty, so he sat and slapped a twenty down. “Jameson’s. Neat.” The bartender nodded and placed a glass in front of him. The whiskey was good and the bar was quiet. A nice contrast to the day.

A woman walked in. It would have been hard not to notice her, and not just because of how slow the place was. She had on a black dress and heels. Stunning. It was clearly a special date. Surprisingly, she walked right up to him.

“Excuse me.”

He smiled. “I think you’ve got the wrong guy.”

A puzzled look crossed her face. “No. I was just wondering… I know this might sound weird, but… Would you mind moving down a couple of seats?”

“Oh. Sure. No problem.” He moved down to the corner of the bar so as to give her and her date plenty of space.

He watched as she waved the bartender over and handed him some money. She said something to him, but it was too soft for him to hear. The bartender nodded and then made two drinks. He gave her a rum and Coke and put a whiskey sour in front of the stool next to her. She took a few sips and her drink, thanked the bartender, and then left.

“Cold feet? Or did she get stood up?” He asked the bartender.

“Neither. She paid for the drinks and asked that I leave the whiskey sour there for about half an hour after she left. Then I could pour it out. She said no one would be by to drink it.”

“Huh.” It was the only response he could think of as he stared at the two abandoned drinks on the bar.

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