#ShortStorySaturday:

“Ended on a Sweet Note”

Tamika Newhouse
Jul 27 · 4 min read

Glad for the long flowing sundress I slipped into this morning as beads of sweat rolled down my inner thighs. The park was full of people, and I was still alone. That wasn’t my original plan when I rose this morning with the excitement of greeting the day, but life happens. It was all good though, I enjoyed being alone. I enjoyed talking in my head and sitting in my thoughts. As people rushed by with their families and friends, laughing, joking and gushing over the weird flavors they had paired together in a bowl or cone, I sauntered slowly through the crowds taking in their joyful energy. I found an empty bench, sitting under a shade tree. I crossed my ankles and proceeded to people watch and enjoy my ice cream.
“All of these flavors and you chose plain vanilla?” Glancing up I saw the stranger. Dressed in a white t-shirt, and shorts.

“What makes you think it’s plain vanilla?” I asked as he sat down.

“What else could it be?”

“It could be lemon, or even lavender infused.”

“Okay, so what flavor is it?” he smiled.

“Vanilla,” I said taking a lick. The stranger smiled. We sat there for a moment in silence. Me with my cone, him with his water bottle. Slightly appreciative of his company, I decided to continue the conversation.

“All of these flavors and you chose…water?” He chuckled.

“I needed to wash it all down.”

The silence came upon us again. An awkward feeling existed between us. A feeling of wanting to know each other but not knowing how. We sat there watching others interact, not knowing how to interact with one another. He should continue the conversation, he approached me, he spoke to me first. But what if he felt he’d done his part in approaching me? What if he was waiting for me to ask a question, or propose a future opportunity for a connection? I didn’t know enough about him to be interested, but I didn’t know enough to not be either. I thought. Letting go of my inhibitions I spoke again.

“You here alone or…”

“Actually, I was here with my crew.”

“They aren’t looking for you?” I looked around for a jealous female waiting for the opportunity to pounce.

“They actually all headed home. I just wanted to stay out for a little while longer.”

“Not in a hurry to get home?”

“I don’t get out much, so when I do, I want to be out. What about you?”

“I’m here alone.”

“Just you and your vanilla cone?”

“Yep.”

“Do you wanna walk? Walk and talk?”

“We can.”

We both stood, I waited for him to take the lead in the direction. We walked through the grass, out of the excitement of the ice cream festival, into the tranquility of the trees.

“So, I detect an accent, well the absence of an accent. Where are you from?” he asked

“Denver.”

“Never would have guessed.” he laughed. “How long have you been here?”

“A little over 24 hours.”

“You just moved here or something?”

“Nope, just visiting.”

“Something special or just in town to sightsee?”

“I decided to sightsee today, stumbled upon this ice cream festival.” I shrugged.

“How long are you staying? Anything specific you are interested in checking out? Maybe I could accompany you.”

“I’m leaving tomorrow.”

“Let me get this straight. You flew into town yesterday and you are leaving tomorrow?”

“I drove.”

“From Denver?”

“From Tennessee. I recently moved there.”

“So you just took a quick trip?”

“Truthfully?” I decided the hell with it. Tell him what happened, it could be therapeutic. “I drove down to meet up with this guy I was dating. Met him online about a year ago, he’s been to visit me a few times, and it was my turn to visit him. We had a wonderful night on the town last night, and this morning while I was in the shower, I could hear him being cursed out by his wife. I dressed in the bathroom and stormed out of their giving her my apologies.” I paused partially for his reaction, partially for think time. “I had no idea he was married and had been lying to me all of this time. His wife excused me with a phrase that led me to believe this wasn’t his first time getting caught being trifling.” I exhaled and glanced at the stranger next to me. His eyes opened wide.

“I’m Jake.” was all he managed to say.

Copyright ©️ Genesa Doss

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The AAMBC Journal | Our Voice. Our Stories. Our Creators

Tamika Newhouse

Written by

Creator of the AAMBC Awards and the AAMBC Journal

The AAMBC Journal |

The AAMBC Journal | Our Voice. Our Stories. Our Creators

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