Monday, February 6, 2017

Nurse the Hate: Hate Flight 173

They got the last two seats back to Los Angeles.  Blank faced travelers wearily entered the jet for the last flight of the day and trudged up the aisle.  They had originally been scheduled to leave on the 5:35, but he couldn’t seem to “get it together” in time to get to the airport so she had to scramble to re-ticket.  She felt frazzled and desperate.  All she wanted was to get home to her apartment.  To be alone.  “This is flight 173 bound for Los Angeles with a scheduled arrival time of 10:17.  If Los Angeles is not your final destination, please let a flight attendant know.”  The trip had been a disaster.  He was somehow still oblivious to her radical change of heart.  He now sat next to her with his knit cap, sweat pants and Vans.  He looked a decade younger than his 28 years.  Up until last night, she had thought that was cute.  Now she couldn’t wait to get off this plane and get away from him as soon as the flight landed at exactly 10:17 PM.

He had adopted the SoCal stoner/brain damaged vibe that was so en vogue with seemingly every male in the 75-mile radius of Los Angeles.  This was despite the fact that he was originally from Boise.  It was all part of the new identity he had created for himself.  The bored flight attendant made a monotone safety announcement into the intercom.  He stared at his phone playing a game slouched in his seat saying “I like this game because, it’s like… a puzzle… heh heh heh!”  Oh God.  The swiftness with which her feelings about him had changed shocked even her.  Just one day ago she found him completely cute, his childlike manner completely endearing.  Now all she wanted was for him to take his leg away from brushing up against hers. 

They had traveled to the Bay Area for her college roommate’s wedding.  She had expected all of her friends to warm up to him as she had and think he was “darling”.  He was so fun and spontaneous.  However, in this case “fun and spontaneous” had meant him getting high on the loading dock with a busboy while she stood alone on the dance floor looking for him.  Her friends had been polite.  They were always polite.  One even suggested that “he seems nice”, though it was obviously a gesture more than an actual feeling.  She felt a shudder of embarrassment when she realized how others saw him.  How they saw her.  After that, she could not recapture the flicker of attraction that had blown out.  It had all happened in an instant. 

After the reception, they had stayed at her roommate’s apartment instead of a hotel.  Boxes containing her childhood years were stacked in the far corner awaiting storage.  The only remaining furniture was the double bed and kitchen table.  Sound echoed around the nearly empty apartment.  There was a chill.  She had curled up on the bed and faced the wall away from him, waiting him out to leave her alone.  He pressed himself against her back presenting his erection against her backside as an invitation she refused to acknowledge.  He made small kisses on her neck as she stared at a Monet print leaning against the wall, hoping he would stop.  She pretended to sleep.  Eventually his stroking of her had matched the same rhythm of his breathing and he lulled himself to sleep.  In the morning she carefully got out of bed without waking him, moving into the kitchen like a cat burglar.

She had been short with him all afternoon.  He hadn’t seemed to notice even when she thought she might scream when he caused them to miss their scheduled flight.  How was it possible for him to take 90 minutes to shower and pack a small overnight bag?  They were late leaving the city and then traffic had trapped them.  She frantically had gone through every permutation of potential return flights on her phone while he had advised her to “chill out”.  It had been a quiet wait at the airport for their later flight.  The hum of the engines picked up urgency as they rolled down the runway.  He was staring at his phone, his mouth slightly open.  A small cartoon character hopped across the screen.  He smiled and made a small laugh.  “Heh Heh Heh”  He leaned his head against her shoulder and she stiffened reflexively.  She sat absolutely upright.  Another announcement crackled over the intercom.  “Please prepare for takeoff.”   She looked at the clock on her phone.  9:24.  53 minutes to landing.  All she needed to do was make it to 10:17.  

She could make it.


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