THE INCIDENT: 1st character pov

OMG. What a morning! Though I’d only had three appointments, all the clients’ marriages were beyond salvation. I was as drained as a city’s water reservoir during the recent drought. I’d talked ‘til I was blue in the face.

I’d talked until I’d run out of ideas and breath. I’d talked until my lips and tongue tingled—and I’d shred more tissues than my customers did. My counseling career was in peril, my soul was in doubt.

I left my office, about to dry heave. I stumbled to my usual restaurant, no umbrella despite drizzle and rain. Unusual for the So Cal climate, but be-fitting my mood. I planned to stuff my face.

That’s why I’d requested a back-of-the-restaurant table, though I was expecting a guest. I didn’t need to see out the windows, to know that the skies were grim. I didn’t want the mirror of my reality, the gloom in my head. I needed to kick back and detach.

To exhale and rebuild my self-esteem before my ever-perky friend came to join. I doubt if she’d have a bad mood if she stubbed her toe or broken an arm. She’ll find me, no doubt.

“Miss, I’ll order now. I already know what I want: a burger. Oh, I just love your buns— Oh, I’m blushing. I didn’t mean yours literally, but the restaurant’s. Must be La Brea Bakery, huh— Oh, you can’t tell. Oh, and I want sweet potato fries and a small salad on the side.”

“Yes, I am expecting another person, but she’s late. She’s a big girl. She can order on her own. Make mine a rush, please. I’m starving.”

Let me just check my messages. I’m too important to waste time. Time may wait for no man, but it’ll wait for this woman. Yessiree.

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