Saturday, June 20, 2015

13. Just Really Polite

“So I noticed you keep looking over at Gabe,” said Beth as she leaned against the edge of the counter.  She had already changed out of her white shirt and black pants and was wearing another stolen plaid shirt and her jeans.  Without the button-down to age her she looked like a highschool student who skipped.
“Shut up Beth,” he replied easily.  It was the usual after-lunch lull before the high schoolers came in to hang around so only a couple tables were occupied.  He was mopping behind the counter before the next rush, trying to get the coffee and syrup up off the floor before it became a permanent sticky spot.
“Okay, whatever,” replied Beth.  She pushed off the counter and tapped out a reply to something on her cell.  “I’m gonna head to the bus stop really quick,” she said zipping up her gray fleece.  Bending to grab her backpack she shrugged it on over the gray fleece she also grabbed her art bags.  The black bags seemed to overwhelm her tiny frame, the large black bag hanging off her shoulder and clinking softly with paints and brushes, on her other side the large portfolio in hand.  After arranging her bags so that she could manage the five minute walk to the stop she smiled.  “I’ll see you later,” she said before turning to maneuver through the tables to the door.
To Theo’s surprise he saw Gabe glancing up from the corner where he had been typing away on the computer.  He watched in quite confusion as Gabe stood and made his way to the door.  Is he going to leave his laptop?  That doesn’t seem right?  It suddenly clicked as Gabe waited by the door for Beth to make her way over.  He then opened the door for her, smiling shyly.
“Thank you!” he heard Beth say with a surprised smile.
“You’re welcome,” muttered Gabe, shutting the door after she had turned and begun walking to the stop, the black bag already halfway down her shoulder.  At that moment Gabe chose to look up at Theo who was staring at the shorter man.
Theo was the first to look down this time, feeling something funny about being caught staring.  He got up from halfway across the room to open the door for her.  Maybe he thinks she’s cute.  His mood dampened a little.  Or maybe he’s just really polite, he tried to assure himself.  He glanced back up to see Gabe almost back to his seat, the tips of his ears red from across the room.

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