Legal Theft Flash Fiction: Wrong (496 words)

She shut the computer with a furious snap. For another moment, she simply sat with it folded on her knees, and blinked across the room at Jason. In an absent sort of way, she seemed to consider exactly which muscles were necessary to take her next breath, and whether or not there was a more aggressive manner to tell the air that she was commandeering it. Slowly, Jason slid his headphones down off his head, blinking back at her.

“I…” she said, perhaps still deciding how best to voice her frustration. “Have sat here too long.” As soon as it was out of her mouth, she shoved her computer off her lap, onto the gentle emptiness of the couch beside her. She unfolded her legs from beneath her, almost bounced on her heels as she stood, and spun for the kitchen.

“Were you supposed to be doing something?” Jason asked.

“No,” she responded through the wall. “I mean. I already did it.” She reappeared with a box of crackers in one hand, and a half-eaten square in the other. She chewed thoughtfully. “I just feel all…” She shrugged, spread her hands, more stretching her bones than communicating anything. “Negh. Wrong.”

“Yeah?” he said.

She seemed to notice she was still holding the crackers as she swallowed. “I don’t want these.” She disappeared into the kitchen again, presumably to put them back.

“It’s nine o’clock,” he called after her. “Do you want to go out?” He sort of hoped she would say no, but wouldn’t mind if she came back around the corner flashing a smile like she sometimes did at the promise of after-dark adventure.

She came back around the corner, chewing on a carrot. “No,” she said. “Red Race is on in like forty minutes.”

He tried not to smile at the way she flicked a glance over to him to question his sanity. She was gone again before she could notice his amusement. He heard the fridge door again.

“No,” she called. “I just have to move. Like, when was the last time you moved your big toe? And can’t you just feel cap collecting in your knees?”

He looked down at his knees, quietly nestled on either side of his own computer. One of them had a granola bar wrapper tucked between it and the plastic base. His was resting his hand on the other. They both seemed content.

Jason glanced at the wall again. “And… There are idiots on the internet?”

Immediately, “THERE ARE IDIOTS ON THE INTERNET AND YOU WILL THANK EVERY STAR BY NAME IF YOU DO NOT ASK ME ABOUT THEM.”

He had tamed his surprised smile by the time she came back around the corner, sucking on a piece of cherry red licorice and he nodded soberly.

She snapped the end off in her teeth.

I’m a thief! I stole the first line of this piece from my friend, M.D. Be sure to stop by her blog to see the original reason for disengaging from the computer. The check out the entire ring of thieves.

 

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