When you are not together

At the coffee shop the guy I do not know pushes through the line of those of us standing in the line starting at the top where the first person standing under the ORDER HERE sign hanging from the ceiling has ordered and is paying for her order. The guy stops and stands so close to me he is touching my elbow, which this early in the morning is not what I would call a comfortable distance.

After the cashier, whose hair today is devoid of any color whatsoever, puts the croissant I asked not to be heated in the oven and presses the START button the guy asks her if the shop has peppermint tea. She says yes. The guy orders green tea. It’s my time to pay for my order. The cashier takes a minute to look at the cash register like it beeped wrong when she pressed its touchscreen. She looks at me.

“Are you together?” she cashier asks.

“Yes!” the guy quickly says.

“No,” I reply as fast. “We are not.”

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