“Okay, now that you’ve got your morning coffee, I want to ask your advice,” Ashley curled her voluptuous form in the overstuffed chair at the Java-Mukti cafe.
“What do you think of this?” she handed her phone to Anna.
“You are my why. You’re my one and only. You haunt my dreams,” Anna read the text and rolled her brown eyes.
“Seriously? This guy is supposed to be some greater writer? He’s a walking, talking cliché!” She sat back and sipped her mocha.
“So you don’t think I should meet him?”
“Sweetie, I don’t think you should even reply to him.”
(This is the second time the Java-Mukti cafe appeared in one of these flash fiction tales. I think it sounds like a super cool place, and if I were of a mind to open my business, I could see opening a free trade cafe like that.
I already like the denizens of the place. 🙂
I hope you enjoyed this entry in my year-long flash fiction challenge. I write these stories from a prompt word. The bones of the story must be done in a single minute. I can edit to my heart’s content afterward, but the initial tale must be finished in that minute. The last time I did this it revolutionized my writing. I hope this time the project will have a similar effect.)
“I’ll have to call you back with that answer. I’ve got a ten o’clock at the White House,” Michelle rushed out of the Starbuck’s with her Skinny Vanilla Latte, phone, and laptop fighting for balance.
The latte lost the battle, toppled over, and drenched her coat.
“Crap!” She stopped in the middle of the sidewalk and pawed at her cashmere.
“Is that soy or milk in that latte?” One of the homeless women who populated that block of the city asked.
“Soy.” Michelle answered.
“Mix baking soda, seltzer, and add a little vinegar at the end, and it will come right out. Coffee and all.”
“Thanks. How do you know that?” Michelle walked to her.
“I used to be a personal assistant.”
“If you don’t mind my asking, what happened?”
“My boss and her husband went to jail on racketeering charges, and no one would hire me after that,” The woman scooted over and made room on her bench.
“And you ended up here?” Michelle joined her.
“Taylor,” she replied.
“So, Taylor, you wouldn’t want to come and fix this for me, would you?”
“I could,” Taylor shifted on the bench and gazed at her with curious eyes.
“Great! And after that, do you want a job?” Michelle pointed to the mess of laptop, bag, phone, and latte in her lap. “Because, obviously, I need the help.”
(I and friends do a Feed the Homeless action periodically where we get together, make about 200 bagged lunches and go out on the streets of DC to feed people who might be hungry.
I’ve had many wonderful interactions with these folks. Their lives are varied and fascinating. Many times I’ve wished I had the resources to hire them to work. So many want to but so few have the opportunity. And that is one of the reasons I started helping homeless people and people living in shelters write their resumes. With one, they can apply for work, if they want to do that. It is super helpful. The sort of interaction in this story might happen, but honestly, I believe the best is when we give as many as possible more even odds to succeed.
This story ended up being mostly dialogue, but I hope that it still captured the essence of a bustling DC street. Flash fiction tends to be more about plot, action, and dialogue than it does about exposition and description. It lends itself to snippets of life tales better than many other fiction genres.
I hope you enjoyed it.)