Weekend

1.0 Monday Morning Coffee

 

Phil turned from the coffee machine to watch Landy drop a briefcase next to the office dinette.

“How was the weekend?” Phil asked.

“Weekend good,” Landy yawned and stretched his arms.

Sooo?

“So, what?”

“Didn’t you take Denise out? Somewhere on Saturday?”

“Sure. Went to the Point. Watched the concert in the park.”

“Gee, that’s swell.” Phil pulled a cup from the dry rack and lifted the full pot.

Landy moved quicker and pushed his own mug in front of the pour, “Seriously, it was alright.”

“So you did nothing?”

“I’m not saying we did anything.”

“Brother, it’s Denise,” Phil curled a lip and smirked, “inquiring minds.”

Landy shoulder checked to see if other staff were arriving and lowered his voice, leaning in towards his co-worker, “C’mon Phil—I have to work with her.”

“Sooo—something did happen.”

Landy moved to the table and peered back at Phil, “Look, she’s kinda wild. After the park, she drags me to some back alley club. It was okay. Likes to dance. We were both laughing our heads off, then suddenly she’s right in my face over some stupid news story that I don’t know about and she does. I don’t even care. She dumps out her philosophy on men, sex, politics, religion, space travel—I’m like whoa, Lady, stop! Then poof—she turns into a house cat and wants me to come over to her place.”

Phil chuckled and glanced to the door, “I’m watchin’.”

“That’s it,” Landy shrugged. “We sat around on the couch and had a few. Too many, I guess. Talked til about three—she’s actually really interesting.”

Phil laughed, “So you did! Nobody’s gonna blab around here. Just be discreet.”

“Seriously Phil—didn’t.”

Landy took a sip and spoke into his cup, “She got too drunk anyway. Kinda fell asleep. I did the gen-tle-man-ly thing—put her in bed and split.”

“Well, that’s the end of that.” Phil dropped a stir stick in his mug and walked past Landy.

“Oh, she’ll call me,” Landy smiled and stooped for his briefcase, “and she’s probably gonna be mad.”

“Hello, what’s this…” Phil turned and hesitated, backing his foot to block the lounge door. Landy was grinning with guilt.

“Well, maybe I had a little too much.”

Phil jolted as the knob met his back; someone was forcing their way from the other side.

 

Landy stepped forward clearing his throat and opened the door, “I’ll meet you in Dreyer’s office after lunch. We’ll go over it then—oh! Hello, Karen! And how was your weekend?”

A woman behind thin purple lips and a gunmetal business suit jockeyed for the open threshold, “Lousy! I was here all day yesterday. My printer’s shot and the kid needed his must-do, final project for this morning. That teacher’s killing me.”

“Uh. Sorry, that sucks. It was nice out all weekend—hey, is Denise here yet?”

“Didn’t see her, but I did get a bunch of stuff done yesterday. It’s on your desk. Have it back to me by lunch, okay?”

“Sure, no probs,” Landy was already in motion, striding down the hall and scanning offices.

 

“Shelly, mornin’.”

A sweatered woman wearing a headset loosened concentration on her laptop and nodded.

Landy walked past more partitions then ducked into an alcove with rows of file cabinets.

“Tal, buddy!” Landy slid into a worn, tan swivel. “Have you seen Denise yet?”

A sun burnt man in an undersized Polo pushed folders across a stacked desk, “Nope—hey, what’s all this stuff? Was Karen in here on the weekend?”

“Looks it. She worked on her kid’s homework or something.”

“You’d think she could not live here all the time,” Tal continued to mutter, his frustration growing, “I don’t wanna deal with all this crap on a Monday! I gotta ease into it.” Tal rolled his chair to a phone covered with rows of extensions and pressed one. “She owes me sick days. Here, I’ll put her on speaker—you be my witness!”

“Leave me out of it. I’d help ya, but she already dumped on me. Hey, buzz me when Denise gets in, okay?”

“Wuss—whatever,” Tal threw a glance at Landy before leaning back and rolling his eyes to the ceiling. Suddenly, he launched into conversation with the receiver, “Karen? Karen what’s all this? You left enough crap here till next month—”

Landy was already up and moving. His cellphone chimed twice but he didn’t need to look at it; Phil was texting him.

D has enterd th buildin, dawg

Landy doubled-back to the office lounge and passed the open doorway, glancing. No one. Landy knew that Denise typically brought her own coffee, spending the morning in her office. He dumped the contents of his mug in the sink, rinsed it, and stood in a position of refilling, poised and motionless. Landy became a suited mannequin on the verge of a lunchroom routine. Inconspicuous, he could stand as long as twenty minutes in secluded thought, until someone spied him and the charade was up.

Peep, peep.

“Nooo!”

It was Tal. Landy returned the coffee to the warmer and checked his phone.

Ds here. Wheres u?

Landy sighed.

 

Peep, peep, peep.

“Whaaat?”

Tal again.

U lft ur briefcase here

Landy focused on the round, glass pot and caught his reflection. A warped, wavy-haired man leered at him. He blinked and the oval face blinked back.

“Uh!” He recoiled and set his mug on the dry rack. His shoulders slumped and he began a slow pace back towards Tal’s cluttered nook and his briefcase. Landy looked like he was heading to the gallows.

Halfway down the corridor, a hand gripped his arm and pulled him around a partition.

 

“What’s going on?” Phil was facing him, studying with lowered eyebrows. “You’re all hush, hush—hiding in the kitchen—and Denise is walking around the office with a big grin on her face like she’s havin’ your baby. What did you two do?”

“Geez, man, nothing. We had a good time—just laughs. Nothing happened. I didn’t even kiss her.”

“Are you sure you didn’t pass out? You know—while you were out of it?

“Nooo—I mean, I didn’t pass out.”

Landy let go a long, audible exhale. The moment he finished, his phone began to chime.

“It’s her.”

Phil leaned against the felt divider and crossed his arms. “You can’t hide in the can.”

Landy waited a moment, then denied the call. He tapped the screen and smiled, lowering his voice.

“Listen,” he motioned Phil to come closer, “no spouting off. Clear?”

Phil nodded, then Landy continued,  “I’ll tell you exactly what happened—and then you can shut up.

 

To be continued, when I can figure out how to write this subtly.

 

Weekend © 2011 Gaboo. Click Gaboo’s tag for more stories and observations.

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2 Responses to “Weekend”
  1. Olivia says:

    I posted about this topic myself earlier today, and it was a pleasure to read your take on it Gaboo.
    All the best ;-D,

    • Gaboo says:

      Thank you for reading, Olivia. Spring is in the air, and we can hear spatter as cubical cupids dust offices with love sparkle. What this does for productivity? Erk. Great at the poem factory. Not so much in jet parts or atom mills. I start thinking and then wonder about a study: Labor vs white collar, union and non, service or industrial. How often do romances occur among home-based business—or bloggers?

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