“Hey, Annie!” Jet called to his friend when she saw her sitting at a table in the back of the little cafe with her laptop open in front of her and typing away. An untouched cup of coffee sat on the table beside the computer.
She looked up from the laptop at the sound of his voice, a small frown on her face. He ignored her frown and gave her a hearty wave and big smile as he made his way over to her and sat down across the table from her.
“Whatcha working on?” Jet asked.
Annie scowled at him. “What do you think I’m working on, Jet? I’m working on my novel.”
“Oh. That thing? So, how’s it coming?”
“Well, it was coming along rather nicely until I was interrupted.”
“Oh. Well, why don’t you try working someplace where you won’t be interrupted?”
Annie rolled her eyes. “Gee. There’s a novel idea.”
Her sarcasm going right over his head, Jet continued on. “So, Annie, look. I’m in a bit of spot and wondered if you might could possibly help me out.”
Annie sighed. “It doesn’t involve me having to give you money, does it?”
“No. Not this time.”
“Good. Then tell me what the problem is and I’ll see if I can help.”
“Well, I don’t know how much help you can be, but if you can do anything, I’d appreciate it. You know I’ve been seeing Marissa, right? Well, she just told me she’s pregnant.”
“That’s wonderful! Congratulations, Jet!”
“Hold on. Not so fast, Annie. I’m not sure it’s mine. You see, I think she might be seeing someone else on the side. She disappeared the other night for a few hours. This was a month or so ago. When she finally came home, she said she didn’t remember where she’d been or what she’d done. But her clothes were all disheveled and she acted like she was drunk. I asked her if she’d been fooling around on me but she swore she hadn’t. Then a couple of days later, she started having nightmares, and I’d wake up in the middle of the night to find her standing at window, staring outside. A week or so after her disappearance, she started claiming she’d been abducted by aliens! I don’t know what to do? Do you think she was fooling around on me and is making all this alien stuff up? What should I do, Annie?”
Annie stared at him, mouth agape. She certainly hadn’t expected that sort of story. When she realized she was staring, she closed her mouth, took a sip of her by-now cold coffee, and pondered for a moment. “Jet,” she said finally, “I don’t think you have anything to really worry about. I pretty certain the baby is yours. From what I know of Marissa, she’s not the cheating type. And I doubt it’s an alien baby. She probably just got drunk and was embarrassed by it, and has probably been watching too much X-Files. But if you really are worried, you can always have a DNA test done. Also, I recommend you start looking for a good job. With a baby on the way, you’re going to need one to help take care of it. I know a few people, so I can put in a word for you, if you want.”
“Thanks, Annie! Thanks for listening, and your advice. You’re a good friend. And if you could put in a word for me with some people about a job, I’d really appreciate it.”
“Sure thing. Now, if you don’t mind, I’d like to get back to my writing.”
“Sure, sure! I’ll see you later, Annie. Thanks again!”
He left with another a hearty wave. She gave him a small smile and a feeble wave in return as she watched him leave. Then she turned back to her laptop with a bigger smile on her face and a small chuckle of pleasure. Jet may have interrupted her from her writing, but he’d at least given her a good idea for her novel.
This short story is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “novel”: