Play Nice

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[This is where the summary would go if I'd bothered to write one.]

« Week 33Week 34 »
Ice Cream!

He was angry because she’d locked the keys in the car while it was still running.

She was upset for leaving the rest of the chocolate eclair ice cream bars in the car. The lockout wouldn’t be so bad if only she had more ice cream. Ice cream made everything better, she thought. It never failed to comfort her. She wondered idly about this each time she had some, bringing the spoonful of ice cream slowly to her lips, upside down, placing the dollop on her tongue then slowly dragging the spoon back out. She wasn’t a chewer when it came to ice cream. She moved the cold novelty around her mouth, placing it on different parts of her tongue for the full effect, letting it melt and mingle with her saliva, and only then did she swallow.

He said it was obscene the way she ate ice cream. He claimed he couldn’t watch her eating an popsicle without getting a hard on. She supposed, had she been so inclined to analyze it, that the way she slipped the popsicle in an out of her mouth could be sexy. But the last thing on her mind as her lips and tongue wrapped around the ice, the tongue swirling, collecting the juice, was sex. She only thought of how good ice cream made her feel, how happy. Nothing bad ever happened to her while she was eating ice cream. Until now.

As she sucked on the ice cream bar she looked inside the car and noticed that the bottom of one of the grocery bags was starting to look a little wet. “Shit. The ice cream’s melting,” she thought. She spent a few seconds thinking about the damage the sweet sugary mess would make to the fabric but she mostly lamented the wasted ice cream.

“How could you leave the fucking keys in the car? While it was running!”

“I thought you were grabbing them,” she explained.

“Why would I get the keys? You were driving.”

“I don’t know. I reached in the back for something then I got out and hit the locks. You were still in the car so I figured you’d shut off the engine and get the keys.”

“What could have been sooo important that—” It was then that he realized what she had in her hand. “No. No fucking way. We are not locked out of the damn car because you couldn’t wait for a god damned ice cream bar!”

She quickly finished the ice cream, running her tongue around the wooden stick, snatching up every last bit before she indignantly said, “No! Of course not. I was grabbing for something else.”

“What? What were you getting?”

She frantically tried to come up with something.

“Uhm,” she murmured, stalling.

“Don’t bother. I know the truth. Look. Standing around here isn’t going to solve the problem. I’m going to see if Terry’s home. I think she has the spare key.”

“OK. I’ll come with,” she said, moving toward him.

“No. Stay with the car. With our luck if we leave it alone someone will come by, break a window and steal the damn thing.”

The ice cream! she thought. Inwardly she groaned. She needed help. As he walked away she dug the popsicle stick out of her left jeans pocket and put it between her lips. She chewed on the piece of wood, looked into the car and winced. The wet spot was considerably bigger now and the liquid was starting to seep through to the light brown fabric. He was going to have a fit when he saw that. It wouldn’t even matter that it was her car and not his.

When she heard his footsteps approaching she spit the stick clear across the back of the car and turned around.

“Is she home?” she asked.

“No,” he said, “but the guy next door lent me his slim jim.”

“Do you know how to use one of those things?”

“How hard can it be? You shove it in and you pull it out. Any idiot could do it.”

“I don’t know,” she murmured. “Last time I locked my keys in the car a cop jimmied my lock and he really had to work at it. Said if you didn’t know what you were doing, you could break something.”

“Don’t worry about it. I—ugh—know—uhm— yeah, almost got—what I’m doing.” He brought his right arm up with a jerk and exclaimed, “There!”

He opened the door, hit the power locks and pulled the key out of the ignition. While he did that she quickly opened up the back door; with her left hand she grabbed some papers that were on the floor of the car and with her right she snatched up the paper bag, praying that it wouldn’t break. She threw the papers over the stain and said, “Honey, could you grab the other bag? I think the ice cream in this one is melting a little. I’m gonna take it inside.” She deftly caught the keys that he lobbed over the roof of the car and hurried into the apartment building. She wanted to throw the goopy mess away before he had a chance to see it.

She pushed the elevator button, once, twice. “Come on, come on.”

“Shit.” She crossed the lobby, opened up the stairwell door and ran up the stairs, taking them two at a time. She heard the elevator doors open as she unlocked the front door to their apartment. She sprinted to the sink, turned the bag upside down, ignored the noise the groceries made as they clattered against the stainless steel. She crumpled up the bag and threw it away, hiding the soft, drippy mess that had previously been an ice cream container, underneath it.

“Please, please, please,” she prayed, opening the freezer door. “Yes!” She snatched a popsicle, tore off the wrapper and was lazily eating it as he walked into the kitchen.

“Damn woman. Don’t you ever get enough?” he asked, more amused than annoyed.

She walked up to him, pressed her cold, wet, sticky lips to his and said, “Nope.”

He wrapped his arms around her and deepened the kiss. He pulled away slightly and licked her lips. “Sweet. You know, sometimes I can really understand why you like ice cream so much.”

She laughed and stepped out of his arms. “That stuff goes in the bathroom .. why don’t you put it away while I go back to the car? I must have forgotten a bag because I’m missing some things.”

“The hall bathroom?”

“No. Bedroom.”

He nodded, picked up the bag and walked down the hall. Once she was sure he was out of sight she grabbed some cleaning supplies.

Back at the car she cringed at the mess. She sighed, grabbed the fabric cleaner and began to spray. Watching the fabric absorb the cleaner, she chewed on the wooden stick between her lips. “I don’t care what anyone says,” she thought. “Ice cream still makes everything OK.”

Published 09/21/03 in Writing • | Views: 2161 times | Print

3 Comments & Trackbacks

I loved this. the ice cream (although I’m more of a bowl than a stick type), the tension, all of it. Your deliciously detailed prose made me hungry.

Posted by Jules  on  09/22  at  02:17 PM

the chucklehut:  awaiting reincarnation as a cremesicle.  i love it.

i’m not really an ice cream person either, generally - at least, not as much so as many people.  for example, i don’t ever want ice cream when i’m depressed.  the last time i bought more than one scoop was when i thought i had tonsilitis, and it was one of the only things i could swallow.  but this post’s opening sure is deliciously vivid…

Posted by kate  on  09/22  at  05:32 PM

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