Fuck me gently with a chainsaw
Tré Little made Rosie, who came standard with enough sparkle for two, sparkle enough for 20.
She barely noticed Brooke leaving the bar in tears, paid no attention to Fred’s alternately mournful and merry conversational gambits, and resolutely ignored Caleb’s scolding glances. All Rosie’s focus was on Tré. And yet, despite all that focused sparkle, somewhere just shy of midnight, Tré announced his intention to depart.
“So early, nerd?” said Rosie. “Let’s get out of her and go dancing.”
“Can’t do it, beautiful,” said Tré. “It’s a working day tomorrow and I need to get my beauty sleep.” He gave her a wink and another huge smile and walked away.
Rosie was flummoxed. Rosie was pissed. When she asked someone to go dancing with her, they good and goddamn well went dancing with her.
What the fuck?
Tré walked to the el with his head full of The Lightweight Group. He was thinking that The March would be a good flagship for the rebrand. It was small enough, and in a good location. They had a dedicated clientele; who might complain loudly about changes, but wouldn’t soon give up the place.
The March was an interesting idea. He walked the midnight streets pondering, Should we do it like ‘The March: A Lightweight Joint’? No… too black, too trendy. What about just L.G.E ... like The March, L.G.E. Focus the branding more by font and color scheme. I need to go home and draw it up. See what looks good. Rosie looked good. That girl is crazy hot. I should have gone dancing with her… Wait! I’ve got it: L.G.E. Presentation. The March: An L.G.E. Presentation. God, that’s classy.
When Tré got home, he whipped out his notebook and drew up some nameplate ideas for The March. He worked until about 3:00 and then made himself a sandwich, letting thoughts of Rosie dance through his brain. She was a sexy girl and a hell of a lot of fun. But she was also the boss’s daughter. He’d be wise to avoid that little flirtation.
As Tré pondered professional and romantic strategies, Brooke lay miserably on the couch, crying quietly. Celia sat on the floor next to her, distressed and annoyed.
“He just walked out without saying anything!” Brooke murmered. “He was so cold!”
“He’s an ass, Brooke,” said Celia, barely tolerating even his memory. “He’s a dried up, withered old ass. Why do you care so much?”
Brooke snuffled, and shook her head. “No one cares about the things I care about,” She said. “But he does. And he knows so much. He’s brilliant. If he taught me, I could be as brilliant as he is. I could know all the same stuff. I could make things better.”
“Oh, Brooke,” said Celia. “I hate it that this old fucker is making you feel this way. Even if that old fossil has read books you haven’t, it’s only because he’s old. You’re with ten of him. Twenty! A hundred! I can’t think of anyone who’d care if he fell off the face of the earth tomorrow. But if you weren’t around, what would I do? See? You do make things better!”
Brooke just rolled over and put her face into the back of the sofa. Her voice muffled, she said, “I love you too, Celia. But I’d care if he weren’t around. I’d care a lot.”
As Brooke cried herself to sleep, Fred was weaving and stumbling around the kitchen, trying to make himself a sandwich. He made so much noise, he woke Susan up.
“Hi, honey,” said Susan. “Overdid it a little tonight, huh?”
“Yesh,” said Fred, sitting down heavily in a chair. “I wish Mary liked me.”
“Well, darling,” said Susan, stroking his hair. “You’ll start school in the fall and soon enough you’ll be a lawyer and then she’ll see what a marvelous man you are. And if she doesn’t, well, the girls will be beating down the door for a fellow like you. I saw someone on Oprah who said, ‘As you become more clear about who you really are, you’ll be better able to decide who is best for you.’ Maybe Mary isn’t the best for you. Just be patient. Maybe you'll meet the right girl when you're back in school. Now, shall I make you a sandwich?”
“Idonwanna,” said Fred, his head buried in his hands.
“What, dear?” asked Susan. “You don’t want a sandwich? Just go to sleep. Sleep it off. Everything will seem brighter in the morning. It always does!”
Fred trumbled wearily off to bed, where he passed out with one shoe still on.
Rosie flipped channels in the family room, fuming over Tré.
Tré slept like a rock.
Brooke dreamt restless, apocalyptic dreams on the couch.
Celia left the apartment to go to Gio’s where she complained bitterly about Teddy.
Gio commiserated with Celia’s complaints and then he kissed her.
And Celia was pretty happy about that.
And the next day, for every one except Gio and Celia, everything seemed pretty much the same as it had the night before.