Fiction,  flash fiction

The Coldest Day of Winter

It’s the coldest day of winter. He’s late coming home. He’s late but with news: big news! He told her earlier. He told her three times, but he can’t believe it. She can. He got a promotion. And he will be getting a raise so they are celebrating. It’s about time they started celebrating, for so long they were just struggling. This is good. This feels great. This is how it’s supposed to work, she’s thinking as she gets their apartment ready. He’s put in extra hours working and she’s put in extra hours waiting. But it’s all worth it now. She went to the store and bought wine coolers and a bag of ice. She bought hot dogs and buns. She made potato salad and cole slaw. Then she turned the thermostat up to 80. The windows on their apartment are dripping with condensation. She’s in her bikini, wearing flip flops. She glazed her long legs with coppertone sunspray. She hears him walking down the hall to their door.

He comes in the door and the heat rushes against him. He sheds his heavy coat, his thick sweater. He’s sweating, suddenly. “What the hell?” he says, “is the heat broken?” He’s unlacing his boots and climbing out of his heavy pants. “It’s always this warm in the Caribbean,” she says, with a wink. He laughs. She’s wearing goggles on her forehead. She smells like coconuts. Her bikini is riding up her ass. She did that on purpose. She’s got a cooler in the corner filled with potato salad, pickles, wine coolers and beer. She’s got a blanket on the floor. “I’m going to fuck her on that blanket,” he thinks when he sees it. He can’t help that thought. He loves her. He loves her picnic. He’s not even hungry. He’s just hungry for her. He strips off the rest of his clothes so he’s in his boxers. She’s got hot dogs on a platter decorated with ladybugs. He pulls her against him. “For the summer we missed”, she says playfully. He kisses her watermelon flavored lips.

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