Flash Fiction: Slow Press (204 words)

Lee didn’t have the patience for fruit. He squeezed the juice out every morning, ground the flesh into pulp and swallowed it down. He tossed it back and grinned at the world as he gathered himself to step out the front door for the day, invading while it was still dark.

Tema always watched him, hip leaned against the kitchen counter, as she peeled her orange into its pieces and slid them one by one into her mouth. She had never finished more than three or four slices before he was banging out the door, and she twisted to watch him go, amused, perplexed.

With her tongue, she burst the orange bits in her mouth, pressing them up against her teeth. The juice seeped into her mouth, a sweet spring. She chewed, broke the flesh further, and the sweetness lingered even as she swallowed it down.

Lee was missing out, feeding on the rush and crack of something conquered, something gained. She wondered if he had any idea came from the slow and steady press.

She slid another piece between her teeth. Sucking gently to gather the next taste, Tema stayed twisted to look out the window at the gradual graying of the sky.


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