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Storm

By , Elk Grove, CA


The tabloids sure were fast. And one sided. Not her side, however. The riveting centerfold has a picture of her crying as she gets on a private plane. Mirroring it is a picture of him crying on a different plane. The muck that fills the paragraphs isn't worth reading. Jean cradles her tears and Loren his ego as they fly from France to Linda. Fate can't have too many broken hearts in one day, and they were the two over the limit. So it was fate that intervened, surely the tabloids would agree. It came in the way of a storm, causing both planes to rattle dreadfully and sway just enough to make you nervous. Jean reached for a bag to throw up in. On Loren's plane, he put on headphones. The captain's intercom echoed through the plane, 'Emergency Landing'. At least they were already over the US. Jean heard similar news, except she was hunched over tending to her air sickness. Not a welcome distraction from her misery, but a distraction nonetheless. The planes didn't touch the ground at the same time, that would've been a tragedy. Loren got there first, ushered by a stewardess into the airport. It was past 2:00 AM. The air port was mainly empty, spare the staff and redeye businessmen crying into coffee. Coffee sounded great, and inspired, Loren found his way to a miraculous Coffee Bean. Airport food may be overpriced, but you had to give credit for the 24 hour service. Jean's plane landed thirty minutes later. She walked in wearing sweats she had changed into in the cramped plane bathroom. No one could travel in an evening gown. Her black hair was released from the bobby pins assisting its defiance of gravity earlier. And the makeup had been removed, or sweated off during the fear of the turbulence. She made her way to the coffee shop. She didn't know Loren was there. He didn't know she was coming. Her thirst came from losing her lunch. She saw him, how couldn't she? He was the sole customer. The employee was a vampiric looking girl, and her whirring eyes and pleasant demeanor at this hour could only be due to immortality or an overdose of caffeine. Maybe she got it free for working here. Jean sat down alone with her back facing her May December romance. Yet he persisted. Fate had no intervention here. People were supposed to use their free will. He used it. Loren sat right next to her. "Is that low fat?" He asks. His eyes look at her coffee, not yet prepared to meet her eyes. They're a window into the soul. They shoot guilt and remorse, if that's what you deserve. Or maybe if that's what you're looking for... Jean is a lot of things, especially stubborn. He takes a sip of his drink. Carmel Iced something or other. Normally he's watching his weight but this was one of those times when you indulged. They were sleepy-eyed and washed out, and Loren had not changed on the plane. He threw a Cubs hoodie over his dress shirt, and it clashed with his elegant pants and shoes. This was how they looked when they weren't pretending to be someone else. The boy band idol and the pretty it girl. Now just sleepy people in a storm. "No." Jean mutters, and in the silence Loren must've forgotten what he asked, so he just nods. They finally meet eyes. Matching gazes. "Scoot over." Jean says, and Loren obliges. She leans away from him, propping her feet on the table and slumping into the couch. Loren copies her position, so their bodies are paralleled. Jean couldn't sleep on the plane from fear, so now she's knocked out quick. He quietly sips his coffee, taking the straw out and sipping from the cup so it doesn't wake her. There's a tap on his shoulder. It's the employee. "I'm going to the bathroom. Hold down the fork. Some of the red eyes might try to steal my precious caffeine." He's too tired to laugh but the woman is obviously a caffeine freak. She walks away but steps back quickly to add, " The money is precious too." Then continues to the restroom. Loren wants his life to always be this moment, and decides to maybe write a song about it when he gets back home.






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