Fourteen

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The last time Lester entered a bar he was twenty years younger and on top of the world. Today he sat at rock bottom. The place was mostly empty, lacking any sort of midday crowd. He sat at a table in the deepest darkest corner. The waitress, Miranda, brought him his third beer and asked him if he wanted her to bring something to eat for the second time. He politely declined and returned his attention to two men playing darts. They were big guys with long beards and leather jackets. Bikers he assumed. Regardless they didn't seem to have anywhere to be since they'd been playing for well over an hour. One of them men went to get their next round of beers having lost the last game. On his way back to his buddy he noticed Lester watching him. He stopped and approached Lester looming over him fixed with a angry glare.

"Can I help you with something pencil neck?" The man asked with a frothy mug in either hand.

Lester gulped. "Nah, I was just watching you guys play. No harm in that is there?"

The man stepped closer towering over him and after a tense second he broke into a smiled. "I'm just fuckin' with ya man." The biker raised a mug to him. "You want next game? I'm getting slaughtered over there."

Lester visibly relaxed. "Only if you and your friend enjoy getting stuck with darts because I keep bouncing them off the board. I'm terrible."

"Feel free to come over and join us if you change your mind. I could use a couple easy drinks and an ego boost off an easy win." The man walked back to his friend and handed him one of the mugs leaving Lester to observe in peace.

Lester realized he had tensed up steeling himself for a fight and let it all out with a deep breath. Some time passed, a handful of customers came and went, eventually even the two bikers left to do who knows what.Lester put away several more beers during that time and as the day wore on the bar began to fill with more people and consequentially got much louder.

The waitress approached him again and cleared the empty bottles from the table. "Don't you have anywhere to be?" She asked.

"Not anymore, no."

"Tough break up?"

"Lost my job."

"That's rough. What's your girlfriend think about that?"

"No girlfriend either. Never had time for one."

"So you're available then?"

He tipped his beer back and emptied the last of the it then handed her the empty bottle. "I suppose I am."

"You haven't eaten anything all day. How would you feel about having dinner with me?"

He gave her a shrug and said, "Sure, why not. Not like I have somewhere to be."

"Love your enthusiasm." She joked.

"I didn't mean any offense by it." He replied defensively.

"My shift ends in a few minutes then we can get out of here."

"Sounds good."

"Great, I'll be back shortly." She turned around and left him there. He could not help but to check out her ass as she walked away.

She won't stick around once she finds out I"m on the hook for embezzlement.He thought. But I deserve a little companionship during this mess.

True to her word she returned to meet him sans apron. "Ready?"

"Sure am." Lester got up and they made their way through the crowd and out of the building.

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