Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2322578-A-Night-at-the-Tiki-Hut-Bar
by IE
Rated: 18+ · Short Story · Romance/Love · #2322578
Sasha is bartending. Writer's Cramp Winning Entry
Sasha sings along to the song that blares out of the speakers of the Tiki Hut Bar. Ice rattles inside the cocktail mixer she’s shaking in time with the beat of the music. “You put a lime in the coconut, and you feel better.”

Uncapping the shaker, she pours the cocktail into a sugar-crusted glass from a great height. Adding a wedge of lime and a pink paper parasol, she delivers the drink to the young woman seated at the end of the bar. “One Tropical Beach Sunrise. Enjoy.” Sasha smiles at the round of applause for her showmanship. She made it look easy, but all these fancy maneuvers took hours of practice.

It’s a busy Friday night at the beach bar. Sasha’s been working as bartender since her arrival in Largo three years ago. The overwhelming desire to quit her corporate job and do something “fun” is what led her to Florida and then this bar.

“Hey,” a loud voice intrudes on her thoughts. Fingers snap just inches from her face. “I thought all the bars in Florida had topless bartenders.” The man leers at her, his gaze raking over her body. “Show us yer--,”

The jerk doesn’t get a chance to finish his sentence as Sam, the bouncer, grabs his upper arm. “Shut it. This is a classy place,” Sam growls.

The patrons grow silent. Some pretend interest in their drinks. Others watch keenly, waiting to see what happens next.

The man jerks his arm away, chest puffed with bravado. “Get yer hands offa me, dude. I just wanted to see her ti--.”

Sam growls louder and grabs the man’s arm again. All eyes are on the two men as Sam drags the idiot to the exit so quickly the man’s feet barely touch the floor.

A few minutes later Sam returns. Sasha pushes a large glass of water towards him, which he drinks in two long swallows. “You all right there, Sasha?” he asks as he sets down the empty glass, wiping his mouth with the back of one meaty forearm.

Sasha nods. “Just another night at the Tiki Hut Bar, right Sam?” It’ll be another few minutes before her pulse stops pounding. A corporate desk job left her unprepared for overt leering and drunken behavior. During those years that type of behavior was reserved for the annual office Christmas party.

Sam shakes his head. “No call for that kinda behavior.” He catches her gaze for just a nanosecond, long enough for him to confirm that she’s taking the event in stride. Not much shakes Sasha, he thinks to himself.


Just after two in the morning, the bar closes. Other than the one thwarted altercation, it was a good night. Sasha stuffs the night’s tips in her purse and slings it over her shoulder.

Sam waits at the door for her, locking up and then walking her to her car. It's a nightly ritual they’ve both gotten used to over the years.

Sasha hits the unlock button on her key fob. The interior of her car lights up. Per the ritual, she opens the driver’s door while Sam walks around the vehicle, making sure everything is as it should be. After he’s checked to make sure no one’s in the back seat, she gets in and closes the door, then rolls down the window.

“Thanks, Sam. You going home?” she asks, as she does every night.

Sam looks up, to a night sky full of stars. “Nice night,” he replies.

Sasha pokes her head out of the car window and looks up too. “Yeah. Beautiful.” She settles back into the seat with a sigh.

Sam raps his knuckles lightly on the roof of the car. “I’d tell you I was going home, but I can’t. Not yet.” He leans in slightly to meet Sasha’s gaze.

“You okay, Sam?” They’ve been working together all these years and he’s always looked after her, but he seems different tonight. Pensive.

“Sure, Sasha. I’m always good.” He looks around the dark, empty lot. “That guy, though. Kinda got under my skin.”

Bouncing drunks is Sam’s job. He’s never mentioned being bothered by someone before. “He gave you trouble? Out here?”

Sam shakes his head, squatting down so he can continue to talk to her. “Nah. He was nothing. I just didn’t—I didn’t like how he was looking at you.”

The words were something Sam would say. It’s the tone of his voice that makes Sasha’s eyebrows raise.

“You flirting with me, Sam?” she asks gently.

He flashes her a grin. Standing, he takes a folded piece of paper out of his back pocket and hands it to her. “I wrote this for you. I’ve been working on it for a while.”

Sasha takes the paper from him, unfolding and smoothing it out against the steering wheel. She flicks on the dome light to read.

With water of purest blue
I would anoint you

With the strongest of arms
I would hold you

With lips that speak only the truth
I would worship you forever

If only you would let me”

Sasha reads the poem several times. She can feel Sam watching for her response, but doesn’t rush to reply.

Finally, holding the paper in one hand, Sasha opens the car door. Sam steps back, holding the door open so she can step out.

“You wrote this? For me?”

Sam nods, his throat working nervously. “It’s too cheesy?”

“Not cheesy at all. I love it. Sweet. Sincere. Like you.”

Sam looks at her hopefully. “Not cheesy. Sincere.” His face beams with a smile. “A walk then? Under the night sky?” He holds out his hand.

“A walk,” Sasha agrees as she takes his hand. She looks up at the sky again. “On a beautiful night.”

967 words

tomorrow is National Coconut Day in the USA! Write a story or poem using these exact bolded phrases:
tropical beach sunrise
a lime in the coconut
with water of purest blue
night sky full of stars

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