She slipped the bartender a few bills and headed back toward the rear of the bar. She flashed me a shy grin as she sat down and slid my drink across the table; I had to remind myself not to swallow the damn drink in one gulp. I was nervous, you know. I couldn’t remember the last time I asked a broad for anything more than a pack of smokes at a gas station, or a slug of whiskey at a bar. I was rusty, if you know what I’m saying, but I said fuck it, and blurted out the words that had been on the tip of my tongue all damned night. It felt like the words came out in slow motion, and to tell you the truth, I didn’t even hear what the hell I said. She nodded and said “sure”. Then it hit me that I’d asked her if she wanted to drive with me to up Highland and take in a flick, get some food, drink, whatever. It didn’t matter to me; it was early, I had a good buzz going, and I needed out of that fucking rig. I still can’t believe she said yeah.
The night was wet and cold; one of those sloppy, slick nights when all you want to do is be sitting at home with a beer in one hand and the TV remote in the other. I hated being outside driving on nights like that, but they made me feel good, if that makes any damned sense. There’s something about a shitty night, or crappy weather that just sort of puts everything in perspective. All that weather just makes you feel small enough to see how big everything really is, you know? It’s a good reminder of where we all stand in the whole schmear. Sally sucked in one last drag of her cigarette, and dug it into the ashtray in front of her. She sucked the life out of that thing, gently, and it glowed red hot before she stamped it to dust.