by J.C. Pickens
241 words. Entry for a Flash Fiction contest.
|Some small-town bars are not meant for the run of the mill city man. Locally owned and locally operated was the preferred way to be. This was very much the case for Joe's.
Joe treated all his customers well, no matter where they came from. So when a sharp-dressed city man swaggered into the bar, Joe greeted him with a smile. The man ordered some drinks and downed them quickly, oblivious to the the glares he was receiving from the locals.
"Hey, you see that guy over there?" The man whispered to Joe.
"Hmm... you mean old Pete? Guy loves his pool," Joe said cheerfully. Pete was bent over the pool table like usual, lining up his shot.
"What's wrong with his eyes?"
"He's near-sighted. Needs to wear glasses for it."
"Not that!" The man snapped. "They look all black... is he sick?"
"Now, now, you'll start a fight asking things like that," Joe smiled, contently cleaning some beer glasses.
"Wait..." The man paused for a moment. "That guy's eyes are weird too. And that woman's... you can't tell me you don't see it! They all have it!" The man was growing nervous now, cradling his drink close to himself and looking around frantically.
"Really?" Joe smiled. "I must be getting old."
Yes, this was no bar for tourists. But still, Joe treated his customers well. No matter where they came from.
"Why don't you have another? It's on the house."