I typed this up on my iPhone while waiting for my wife. It’s a little adaptation of the popular painting by Edward Hopper, Nighthawks.
“Because if I fall asleep, I’ll wake up.”
The cafe server, brow cocked, stared blankly at the lone man across the counter.
“You lost me boyo.” The cafe server, shaking his head, continued to stack mugs.
“What does that even mean?”
“Look at it out there…it’s empty, it’s nothing. No jobs, nothing’s free, and people are too scared to even walk the streets at night. I had faith In tomorrows, a new day, a fresh start. I want a great tomorrow I know it ain’t happening. I feel it in my gut that nothing’s gonna be better in twenty-four hours. No, I’m saving tomorrow for later, so give me another cup of that mojo.”
A snicker peeped from the other side of the cafe. A woman was laughing quiet words into her male companions ear.
The lone man tilted his hat up.
“Hey, what’s so funny? Was it something I said?”
“Mind your own business pal.” The male companion commanded.
“My own business? It’s just the three of us in here. No offense,” he said to the cafe server. “Ain’t it a little rude to be laughing and telling secrets in a public place?”
“Listen pal, I said to shut it or else.”
“Actually, you said to mind my own business pal.”
“Smart guy.” said the male companion as he tuned his body at an angle to shield the woman from the lone man’s view. The pair then continued their laughing and whispers.
“Can you believe that?” the lone man said.
The cafe server looked at the lone man. “You asking me? I thought I wasn’t a person, remember?”
“Jeese, touchy feelings. I didn’t know you working type were so sensitive.”
The lone man, his hand fumbling in his pocket, asked the cafe server,”Hey, how much I owe ya?”
The cafe server quickly responded, “eight dollars.”
“How about this, I give you a ten and then you give me everything in your register, your wallet, that watch, and then you make your way over there and grab me their wallet and purse.”
“What?” The cafe server squinted at the lone man who was now aiming a pistol at the cafe servers head.
“You heard me. Move it.”
The cafe server, eyes darting to the shotgun under the counter and back to the lone man, slowly backed to the register and popped it open.
“Grab the shotgun, idiot!” The male companion yelled before the lone man shot him dead.
“I wouldn’t listen to him. He’s dead after all… Right, Miss?”
The woman sobbed over her male companion’s body. The cafe server fetched all the cash from the register and made his way over to her.
“Ma’am, I’ll need that purse or we’ll both be shot.”
“The wallet too.” said the lone man.
“His wallet too, Ma’am.”
The woman couldn’t stop sobbing. Unable to roll the man over and retrieve the wallet, she screamed incoherently.
The lone man walked to the other side of the cafe and without mercy shot the woman as well. He easily rolled the male companion over and took the wallet.
“Hand it over.” The lone man pointed the gun at the wad of cash in the cafe servers hand.
“Yes sir.” The cafe server said and then extended the cash over the counter.
“Would it make this easier if I said I had kids?” The lone man said.
“Just please don’t shoot me.”
Outside the cafe, in the darkened gloomy streets, two flashes sprang from the windowed corner of the cafe and for two brief moments, the streets were painted with light.