[NOTE TO READER: be advised this is a satirical twist on the ‘Reluctant Roommate’ story starter idea and contains coarse language.]
“Here buddy, check this out!” Loper plops down a hastily torn out section of newspaper onto the table between them.
Chris looks down and sees a circle scrawled in red ink, highlighting a classified ad; he reads the heading out loud “For Rent – One Bedroom Apartment.” He looks up at Loper’s big gap-toothed grin and thinks to himself [Jeez, you could park a Honda between those teeth].
“So, whatchu think?” Loper’s eyes sparkled.
“Is this the surprise you wanted to talk to me about? You ‘re finally moving out of your mom’s basement?” [About time too. A quarter century is long enough for her to be taking care of you.]
“Yuppers – movin’ up in the world. But that’s only half the surprise.”
“Wow, did you find another job too?”
“Nope – still cookin’ at The Fire Burger. But looky here!” Loper said as he pointed to the bottom of the circled paragraph. “That’s the addressright close to The Fire Burger. When we live there, I won’t need to take the bus across town to get to work no more.”
“Uh…hold up a sec. What do you mean ‘We’?” [Shit, Loper’s off his meds again.]
“Yeah buddy, that’s the other half of the surprise. Me and you both can split the place. Isn’t that just the bang?”
“Well, uh…sorry to pull the plug on that idea but I’m not moving anywhere. Especially that far away from my work.”
“Sure you are, Lucy told me you were lookin’ for a new place.” Loper said with a wink and a quick nod, like he’d just caught Chris in a tiny white lie.
“She did huh? Yeah, I guess I may have mentioned it, but I was kind of hinting that maybe it was time for she and I to get a place together. Where is she by the way? Didn’t you say she’d be here too?” [Lucy, you’ve got some splainin’ to do.]
“Sure, but only coming a bit later. I wanted to give you the good news first and we can both surprise her.”
“Loper…like I said, I was planning on getting a place with Lucy. You know, so we can spend more time together…as a couple.” [Deep breaths, stay calm.]
“She can come over any time she wants. We’ll all have a great fun together; you’ll see. Yuppers, like three peas in a pod.”
“Listen Loper…I’m sure this is all a big misunderstanding. I know you’ve been neighbours with Lucinda for…well since grade school but we’re adults now. Lucy and I are in a relationship and if I moved in with you, well…don’t you think it would be complicated?” [Take the hint amigo; trying hard not to hurt any feelings here.]
“Not complicated at all buddy.” Loper said while reaching for the dirty canvas bag at his feet, retrieving a four-page document and placing it on the table. The words ‘Long Term Rental Agreement’ were in bold lettering at the top of the first page. “The man said just need to put our names on the back page and the place is ours.” That goofy grin made another appearance.
“Oh-kay, let’s think about this for a second.” [I guess I need to dumb it down and let him figure out on his own] “You don’t even make enough money for food, how are you going to afford rent…bills…all that stuff?” [and wipe that stupid grin off your face…you look like Alfred E.Neuman.]
“That’s what I got YOU for buddy. You got a good job and you could pay the rent and all that other stuff. It’s gonna be swell?”
“Uh huh.” [You can’t be fucking serious] “Well, there may be some logic in there somewhere I suppose. Let’s say you and I did get this apartment together,it’s only one bedroom. Where are you going to sleep?” [certainly not with me you creepy little mooch.]
“Well I’m bringing my bed with me and I’ll sleep in the bedroom.”
“Sure…makes perfect sense. A bed belongs in the bedroom. Oh…but wait – what about me? Where am I going to sleep? You’re not suggesting I’m sleeping in your bed with you, are you?” [Check mate my gap-toothed friend, it all ends here.]
“Ha ha ha – course not, that’s not cool buddy. Lucy told me you just bought a new couch so I’ll let you sleep on it in the Living Room.”
“Wha…<cough-cough>” Chris began coughing uncontrollably at the absurdity of what Loper just told him.
“You okay Chris?” Loper’s eyes were wild with concern. “Need the hind-lick manoeuvre?”
“NO, <cough> I’m good. <cough-cough> Just inhaled some dust or something.”
“Okay then.” Loper bent down for his bag again. “Let me just get my pen and we…”
“Loper, NO! We are NOT getting an apartment together. What the hell makes you think that I would want to get an apartment on the other side of town from my job and my girlfriend? …and share it with another guy who can’t even afford to pay his half of the rent? What the fuck are you thinking?”
“Uh, well…I was thinking maybe you would help me out, you know? You don’t have to be such a tampon about it.”
“Wait, did you just call me a tampon?”
“Lucy and me have been buds for forever you know! An’ she said if I can’t find someone else, then she’d move in with me.”
“She said that? Really? She said she was going to move in with you?” [Hmm, maybe I was wrong about Lucy.]
“Well…not exactly like that. She said she wanted to help me though. Wait, there she is now.”
“Hello boys, you got here early.” Lucy greeted her two friends at their table; one of them was smiling, the other was not.