On The Edge Of Exodus

Wayne was wincing as he squeezed through the door; opening it only slightly as to avoid the creaks further along the hinge.

"So how was your date?" Came Shane's voice from the living room.

Wayne sighed and pushed the door which groaned as if to mock his failure. He trudged into the living room, defeated.

"Oh, were you trying to be sneaky?" Shane said taking a swig from his beer, his eyes not leaving the television.

"Maybe." Wayne muttered, pulling off his jacket. He placed it in his lap as he sat beside Shane on the couch. "You're up late."

Shane snatched at the jacket with unexpected speed and pulled a sleeve up to his nose. He took a sniff and stared at Wayne who was regarding him with disgust. "Ah, you got close." Shane said, smiling.

"You are one creepy guy."

Shane let the sleeve go limp. "I get my thrills vicariously through you."

"You know, that's the kind of behaviour that makes it so difficult for you to get a girlfriend."

"What?"

"The sniffing of things? That is very creepy."

"Some people stare, some people touch. I just happen to have particularly sensitive olfaction." He laughed, peering over to Wayne. "It's a good thing you work at a dryer sheet factory and not a sewage plant."

"Still creepy."

"Whatever. So, how far did you get?" Shane took a swig.

"I don't kiss and tell."

White froth spewed from Shane's mouth as he burst into laughter mid gulp. "Hah! You're kidding right?"

"What?"

"You don't kiss and tell?"

"No!"

"Yeah, and I'm the pope."

"Well, now you really aren't getting any info."

"Oh it'll come." He said, wiping his mouth. "You won't be able to hold it in for too long."

"Anyway, get off my bed."

"Speaking of." He turned, looking at Wayne with an air of regret. "How long are you going to stay here?"

"I don't know, until I get a place I guess."

"Well, now that you're wooing a new lady, you might want to hurry up with that."

"Shane, the market sucks right now."

"I still don't see why you gave your old apartment to Shelly, I mean, after what she did?"

"Don't even get me started." Wayne snatched the bottle of beer from Shane's hand.

"Hey! I backwashed!"

"So what." He took a swig and immediately regretted it. "Ugh god, that is not backwash Shane, that's full blown phlegm.

"Hey, there was fair warning."

"Ugh." Wayne shook his head, his misty eyes shut tightly, trying to will the texture out of his memory.

"So yeah, back to you moving out."

"You're an ass."

"No, I'm a good friend with ample hospitality. Let's face it, you've been here for two weeks since stuff got rough with Shelly and you need to get out on your own again."

"I suppose I can't take Autumn here." He looked around, suddenly ashamed at the state of the room. "She'd probably throw up from the smell."

"Whatever, I'm not an interior decorator. I just tell kids not to do drugs and to stay in school." He took another swig of the beer.

Wayne gagged. "How can you still be drinking that?"

"What? There's still some left. So when's your next date?"

"I'm ... not actually sure."

"What?"

"Well, we kind of just made out all night on a Ferris wheel, talking about ourselves and such."

"Wow, you're weak."

"What?"

"You told me already."

"Ah, crap."

"Predictable. So ... is she a good kisser?"

"Oh man, you have no idea. It's like ... " He stared into nothingness. "Ambrosia."

Shane frowned. "You just related kissing to a mythological party favor."

"Oh shut up, and get off my bed. I work tomorrow."

"So do I." Shane grimaced like a child mocking his sibling.

"Yeah, well I do real work."

"Oh? You don't think moulding the morals of our youth is a real job?"

"You're kidding. You just said a few seconds ago that you just tell kids to stay in school and not do drugs."

"Yeah, and what do you do for our youths? Give them nice smelling and static free clothes? Hah! You call that a real job?"

"Hey shut up! I have a great job."

"Then why do you complain about it so much?"

"Because it's about as impressive as being squire to a knight."

"Actually, squires were pretty high in the social ladder in the early fifteenth century. Some were even on their way to being knights themselves if they were from a rich enough family. I‘d say you‘d fit more in the dirt farmer range of the social strata."

Wayne thought for a moment, "Fine, bad example. It's like being that miss-tint at the paint shop that's 75% off and still collecting dust."

"Good analogy."

"Thanks. Seriously though, I gotta get some sleep."

"Alright." Shane shut the television and got up. His eyes peered down at the jacket. "One more?"

"You're not sniffing my jacket again Shane, get out of here."

"Fine." He said, sauntering off.

The End

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