Wait

“Another cocktail?”

The woman hesitated, checked her phone, examined the lipstick stain on her glass. “Whiskey. Neat. Something with bite.”

The bartender nodded. Her movements were effortless fluid as she replaced the empty cocktail glass with a fresh tumbler and filled it with a rich golden liquor.

“Thanks,” the woman replied. She took a long, slow sip of the whiskey, then sighed. “I’m wasting my time, aren’t I?”

The bartender shrugged. “It’s not that late. You’ve got a great smile, killer curves, and that dress! Honestly, I’ve been thinking about trying to get your number, except it seems like you’re waiting for someone.”

A sad smile “You’re sweet.”

“Nah, I’m just a sucker for red lipstick. What’s the story?”

Another long drink. “I’m here for a conference. He told me he’d meet me at my hotel while I’m in town, so I gave him the address and everything, but . . .” she trailed off into a sigh, then drained the remainder of her whiskey in one long gulp. Moments later her glass was full again.

“On the house,” the bartender smiled. “This guy, is he worth waiting for?”

Her lips twitched. “I thought so.”

“And . . . would he wait this long for you?”

* * *

Story by Gregory M. Fox