Monday, February 9, 2015


It was a dark, clear, and still night. A lonely grave digger—or maybe he was just a graveyard attendant; Rick couldn't decide at the time—was sitting on a rusty chair. "No, no, no it’s all wrong," Rick said to himself. He scratched out the last line he was writing. He folded up his notebook and pushed his chair back from his desk. In his apartment, he had two chairs—a used sofa from his Aunt Sue and a worn out mattress on a box spring that was at least fifteen years old—among other worn furniture that he made years ago. Rick looked around his apartment and found no inspiration for his new passion of writing. When the weather permitted, Rick would climb out the window on the back side of the church to sit on the roof and look around. Nights like tonight were a perfect opportunity. He climbed out his window and perched himself on the roof of the old church. He saw a small fire out near the field over the railroad tracks. Rick climbed back into his apartment, grabbed a coat, and headed out the door.

Rick wanted to find out what the fire was and who in their right mind would make a fire at this hour. If anything, it would make for a good story for him to write about. As Rick was crossing the tracks to the fire just beyond some trees, someone walked up next to him.

"Hey, you going to the bonfire?” She asked, adding on, “By the way, I'm Carmen."

"I'm Rick. I didn't actually know there was a bonfire going on."

"It was in this morning paper. Third page. It's an annual event. At least that's what I read." Rick and Carmen kept on their way to the bonfire and made small talk about their past and how they both ended up in town. They finally arrived at the bonfire, and about twenty folks were standing around, young and old, dancing and roasting marshmallows to make s'mores with.

Rick and Carmen drifted apart once they got to the bonfire, mingling with other folks, but, when the fire started to die down, people started drifting away, and Rick found himself sitting near the edges of the fire’s warmth. Rick looked around for Carmen because quite frankly she was hot, and he wanted to get her number. He got up and walked over to where she was sitting by the fire. "I'm just going to be upfront about this. I think you’re pretty, and you’re fun to talk to.  Do you think I could get your number?" Rick asked. He could tell that she was a bit taken aback by his forwardness, but she gave it to him anyway.

"Sure," she replied, checking her bag for something to write on.

"Here, just put it in my phone."  She entered her number into his phone, and they chatted about all the interesting people they’ve met and about their jobs. The conversation lulled, and they stared at the fire. Rick spoke up, "Have you ever noticed that there are so many new people in this small town? I swear, half the people I meet here are all new and all came here for some weird, half-baked idea."

"You know, I never thought of that."

“Look, I got to go. It’s getting pretty late. I enjoyed talking to you. See you again some time?”

“I’d like that. See you soon!”

The fire died out, and Rick wandered back home happy with getting Carmen's number. By the time Rick got home, it was one in the morning, and he was completely worn out. He stretched out in his bed and checked his phone. Nothing new there. He thought about texting Carmen, but he decided to wait to text her. For now, he needed sleep.