Tangerine a short story

“He didn’t want to lose his train of thought. He wanted to blow it up and examine the pieces that showered down.”

“You’re an idiot Stoneburg.”

“I’m the idiot? He was the one who tried to do it. I warned him of course, but you can’t warn people like Vince Tork, it only makes them more determined to prove you wrong.”

“Then keep you mouth shut for once.”

“That’s the idiot in my I guess. You’re right you know. Even I make mistakes. Don’t get on my case about it though. I do have a little pride left.”

“Where’s Vince now?”

“In the hospital. They said he might not wake up.”

“He will.”

“How do you know Mary?”

“I know. People like Vince always wake up. You don’t kill them, God just stops them in the end. Vince never let life flow by.”

“He does fill every hour with minutes doesn’t he?”

“And every second with electricity.”

“I better get going. They said that if he pulls through the publishers want him to sign off on the manuscript.”

“You’ve got it right here?”

“I wasn’t going to tell you Mary. You’d have wormed your way into it and you know it! Listen I’m going to the hospital. Lock the door on the way out.”

“You won’t let me see even the cover page?”

“Not even the inside of this brief case Mary. Nada.”

He slammed a glass of water and stepped for the door. Mary sat motionless.

“You really think he’ll pull out of it?” There was doubt in his voice, hand wringing sort of worry.

“Absolutely Jonathan. He always does.”

The door closed and she continued to look at the big mahogany desk. Traffic noise seeped in through the window.

“Rush hour.” She said to the empty room. “To bad he always comes back. Vince, you really need to retire.”

She fingered the gold band on her ring finger and suppressed a smile.


Nathan A. Emery is a novelist and short story auhtor. His latest short story collection is Gold River City 100 available on Amazon.com.


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