Coffee and Tea

Marty's walk led him, unsurprisingly, to a small café near his place of residence. This was unsurprising because his walks always managed to lead him to if not that very same café, then another café of the same sort. Even in areas he'd never been to before, it was a sure shot that he would end up, after a varying period of time, sitting at a small table watching people drink fancy coffee, just as he was doing minutes after the frisbee ordeal.

Sitting and watching not because he was drinking piping hot flavoured bean water and needed something to do while he did so, but because he needed something to do while avoiding drinking any piping hot flavoured bean water. Or cold flavoured bean water, for that matter. While beans of this variety were not vegetables, per se, but in fact the seeds of coffee 'cherries' (as he had learned in a similar café), he was equally as dispassionate about them as he was about produce, and on top of that, thought that beans and water were simply not to be mixed.

Leaves and water, on the other hand...

He sipped on a tea as he sat and watched, but his mind was neither on the boiled leaves, nor the café, which was unusual. Normally the entirety of the appeal of a café, in his eyes, was the atmosphere, and even though he did enjoy a good tea, he only ever bought them at these pricey places so he could sip on them for long periods of time, just to have an excuse to be there. The employees of the places always seemed bothered when he sat around without a drink, and that really ruined the mood.

Back to the issue at hand, though; what was on his mind was, of course, the red-inked phone number sitting on the table in front of him. He'd practically memorized the thing by now, and wasn't even looking at it, so its presence was unnecessary at best, but the fact that it existed had really thrown a curve-ball at poor Marty.

His mind was still running in circles, the very same ones it had been running in the entire time he had been walking to the café, and even though he knew it was happening, he felt there was very little he could do about it. His mobile was in his tea-free hand, the number entered and ready to go, his thumb hovering over the send button, but he had been holding the position ever since he had originally sat down, and would likely continue to do so for a very long time.

He had to call the number, of course; how could he not? But what did one say when calling a number they've found on the ground in the park? Besides hello, of course; 'Er, did you get hit by a frisbee in the park earlier? Well, me too. D'you want to sit in a café and take in the ambiance with me some time?'

It was rubbish, and he knew it, but he also knew, as said, that not calling was simply not an option.

But what would he say?

And so it went, and had went, and would have continued to go, perhaps indefinitely, had a miracle not happened by in the form of a particularly clumsy waitress. Or perhaps more accurately, a tray held by a particularly clumsy waitress colliding with the back of his head as she walked by him, thus jerking his hovering thumb into the send button, thus calling the number.

"All right," he begrudgingly announced to no one in particular. The waitress continued on without even noticing anything had happened, and he put his phone to his ear, half expecting the number not to be in service, or at the very best to get a machine.

"Hello?"

He paused for a heartbeat (or rather, what would have been a heartbeat, had his heart not chosen to momentarily stop) before it hit him. This voice, while female, was not that of the girl he had seen. He didn't know how he knew, but she just didn't sound... right. He chided himself for being so stupid as to think that someone would be carrying their own number around with them.

"Hello... um... do you by any chance have a friend who likes jogging?" Smooth, Marty, very smooth.

"Hello? What? Are you trying to sell me something? I'm not interes---Ow!"

Marty may have been concerned with the voice on the other end of the line expressing sudden pain had he not been distracted by the same waitress who had run into him smacking another customer over the head with another tray, much harder this time. He was puzzled for a moment upon hearing the declaration of discomfort in stereo before he realized he was speaking to another customer on the phone from across the café.

"Never mind then," he said, abruptly hanging up. He was suddenly quite nervous about the other woman noticing he'd been calling her, and decided to leave.

However, the woman proved to be in a bigger hurry to leave than he was, perhaps due to a certain amount of anger toward the café's employees, and reached the door a moment before him. He followed her out, giving the poor waitress (who was now being told off by a manager or something of the sort) one last glance before going.

The sidewalk wasn't overly crowded -- he could easily see the woman walking away -- and yet it had enough people on it that he was struck by the notion that it would be incredibly easy to follow her without arousing any suspicion. A ridiculous thought to think, he knew, but at the same time not so much, because he was by now convinced that some sort of noggin-abusing deity was guiding him through this whole mess, and that he would continue to be smacked in the head until he did what it wanted.

And so, mind made up, he began, again, to walk.

The End

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