CHAPTER SIX – Bar none

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Leo was all over the bar. Sleeping. The bartender did not disturb him. He knew that Leo was working all day, in three different jobs to make ends meet. His father died and left him with a huge mortgage. If Leo wanted to keep his place, he had to pay every month an enormous sum at the bank. But the thing is that with three different jobs, he didn’t get to see much of the house after all. His wife left him last month complaining that he was never around, plus she had to clean a huge house, that made her feel even lonelier.
He had to sell it, but for a weird reason he was keeping up this exhausting daily routine. The last four days he was practically sleeping at the bar. But still, he hadn’t made any moves to sell the damn house and free himself from this pointless nightmare.
He woke up around 2 am. Opened his eyes and looked beside him. Joyce, the flower girl was enjoying her beer. Next to her, a basket full of red roses was hanging from the bar. Leo asked her how much they cost. I am not working right now, she answered.
He smirked and stretched back. He waved at John, the bartender, who then started to fill a big glass with blonde beer. He served it at him and Leo raised his glass saying cheers. Everybody answered back and raised their glasses. Joyce finished her beer, left some coins on the bar and leaned to pick up her basket. Leo asked her if she would like another round. She said no, she had to work. She never had more than two beers while working because she was afraid that something might happen to her.
– So officially now you are working
– Yes, I guess so
– Ok! Maybe now it would be a good time to tell me how much they cost
– Two dollars each
– Two dollars is a good price. If I buy twenty of them, would you call it a night and seat next to me to have another round?
– I am no prostitute
– I didn’t imply anything like that I am sorry. I just want some company. You don’t even have to talk to me. I just like it when you are around. Besides in one hour, my night sift starts.
– I am sorry, too. But I make no exceptions. When I have to work, I work.
– Ok then give two.
– Four dollars
– Here, take them. And keep the flowers too.
– But they ‘re yours, you bought them
– Yes, I bought them for you. I want you to take them home and put them in a vase. It’s a gift.
– I am sorry I can’t do that. I just can’t. Take them or leave them.
– Won’t you keep them to yourself?
– Honest? If I can sell them I will. I can only promise that I will sell them last.
– You drive a hard bargain. Against you.
– I told you I make no exceptions. Bar none.

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