Scraping metal against china helped fill the silence of that evening, though even that wasn’t loud enough. Whilst he was used to this, Jeff couldn’t help but clear his throat every now and then – or else shift around in his seat – to make out that he was in the throws of some awful cold as an excuse for his silence.
Unbeknown to his companions – not that they would care – he was planning how he could broach the subject of moving that night. Jeff had spent much too much time staring at the flurry of lights; seeing hope and joy what seemed to be an arm’s length away. He felt as though the glow was reflected in his eyes. But like any mirror image, whenever he reached out to grab this beauty, his fingers merely brushed against cold glass; hard and still.
Now is the time. “I’ve been thinking…”
She sighs, “Here we go. What’s your latest fantasy, Jeffery? And it will definitely pluck us from the reaches of poverty? Think on this.” She spits upon the table, adding to the crumbs and dirt from months past.
“But look.” He takes his sleeve, leaning across the table to reach. Wiping the spittle mark in a circular motion, he unearths a beautiful light shade of wood – completely different to the rest of the dull colour around it. “You have such little faith. Like this piece of furniture, negatives can prompt positives. Just like that globule of spit created a cleaner, clearer vision, so too have my previous wrong decisions. To run, you must first walk…”
He recalled her free laughter; the shake of her head as she listened to his clichéd jokes; the way her shoulders wiggled. But now she shakes her head for a different reason.
“Wait.” A stern voice orders. Jeff sits up straighter in his chair, already wincing as he waited for the onslaught.
A pause. Three intakes of breath.
“He may have a point.”