“A Grande Latte, please, with caramel.”
Stephen stared, his eyes hovering just above the faux black marble of the counter, trying to appear detached, trying to smile into the caramel eyes of the girl behind the counter – trying to seem old enough not to care. Already an old man of thirteen, she recognised him, the spitting image of his father. He fumbled for his wallet as the girl – Jenny, her name badge declared – as Jenny hesitated before telling him the price, he seemed too young to her, too young to be allowed to drink coffee. “Probably just a phase,” she thought to herself, “trying just that little bit too hard to become a member of the caffeinated youth.” He even dressed like his father would have, just like his father circa 1982, it was probably subconcious – a Sex Pistols t-shirt, a torn and faded denim jacket scrawled over almost illegibly with words, covered in an indecipherable noise of ideas in some kind of popular rebellion. Stephen paid the “four dollars, eighty cents,” carefully counting out the coins before giving his name to her.
Slowly he moved toward the collection counter, feeling a sudden surge of pride as he tried to corrall his sisters. Jenny called out his name when the coffee was ready. She felt the jolting assault of surprise when she heard him tell the two young girls to “fuckin behave”, felt it redouble when she tried to intervene – he told her to mind her own fucking business and flipped her off as he walked away. He had seemed so polite in the beginning. Too shocked to reply, she pulled herself together behind the steam wand, behind the brown tears of the crying machine. “Just like his father,” she thought. “An arsehole.”
This story is really an attempt to not only respond to this week’s IndieInk writing challenge but to karate chop the dreaded writer’s block in the face and just get on with it…I also used the Trifecta prompt Image (third definition as always), this week’s InMon prompts (the noise of ideas, covered with words, popular rebellion and the crying machine) as well as 3WordWednesday‘s words detach, jolt and surge. I hope you enjoyed it…
For the IndieInk Writing Challenge this week, Jester Queen challenged me with “Write a story based on this sentence (which doesn’t have to appear itself in the final version): Now that he was an old man of thirteen, Stephen dressed like his father used to dress, drank coffee in the morning and spoke strongly to his sisters if they acted up.” and I challenged The Lime with “Write an exchange (in the third person) between two people in an elevator, using the words ‘sword’, ‘catalyst’ and ‘valentine'”