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  • Writer's pictureTara Theresa Hill


Updated: Feb 29, 2020

(It’s morning. I half-stumble into the living room. Leo is sitting on the couch.)

Leo: Hi, Sunshine!

(I glare at him. He follows me into the dining room/kitchen and takes a seat at the table.)

Leo: So, how’d you sleep?

(I slam a kitchen cabinet in answer.)

Leo: Okay. Well, good morning to you too!

(I bring my cereal over to the table and sit down next to him.)

Me: You’re not going to take any responsibility for last night, are you?

Leo: What did I do?

Me: You insisted on brainstorming that scary scene before bed.

Leo: I thought the notes you wrote came out great. You seemed so happy with it when I left.

Me: (sighing) You’re right. I was. I don’t mean to be grumpy or to sound ungrateful for your help.

Leo: Then what’s the problem?

Me: After we finished working, you went home to rest, while I stayed up for the next two hours staring at my bedroom walls.

Leo: (chuckling) You scared yourself again.

Me: It’s not funny, Leo! You helped so the least you can do is feel guilty about it.

Leo: Aw, c’mon. It’s not my fault you’re a chicken.

Me: I’m not a chicken.

Leo: Oh please, Tara. You spit feathers every time I pop in without announcing myself first.

Me: (sulking) I do not.

Leo: Want to bet?

Me: (wary) What do you mean?

Leo: During the rest of the week, I’ll appear unannounced once a day. If you manage not to freak out for at least three times out of the five, then you win. If you don’t, then I win. Deal?

(Leo holds out his hand for me to shake, but I push it away.)

Me: Just a minute! What are the stakes?

Leo: Nothing. I just want to see if you can do it.

Me: (shaking my head) No way! If I have to endure you playing trickster all week then I want something out of it.

(Smirking, Leo leans back in his chair and crosses his arms behind his head.)

Leo: Fine. What do you want if you win?

Me: (trying to sound as nonchalant as possible) I want you to answer one of my questions about your background.

(Leo bolts upright.)

Leo: No, I don’t think so.

Me: But why not? We’ve been friends for so long. I think I’ve earned the right to know more about you by now. Besides, it’s just one innocent, little question.

Leo: (glaring at me) And I know exactly what you’re going to ask! I’ve told you before that I can’t tell you.

Me: Well, you can’t blame me for being curious.

Leo: No, but I wish you would just let it go. If I could tell you, then I would. (sighing deeply) You do know that, right?

Me: (shrugging) Yeah, I suppose so. (I nudge him in the ribs). Still, sometimes I think you like being a mystery.

Leo: Sure! I love constantly being pestered for answers that I can’t give. It’s great!

(I pick up my now empty cereal bowl and bring it to the kitchen sink.)

Me: Oh, good. Then I’ll make sure to keep asking you.

Leo: (following me into the kitchen) Ha. Ha. Keep it up, and I’ll jump out of walls and mirrors for a week, bet or no bet.

(I turn around to face him.)

Me: You wouldn’t dare.

Leo: Try me.

(We square off for a minute.)

Me: (throwing up my hands) Fine! I’ll stop asking.

Leo: Good.

Me: (muttering under my breath as he walks away) For now.

Copyright 2020 by Tara Theresa Hill

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