Gale Force Ch. 06byvelvetpie©
Season One, cont.
Sunday was a day filled with pain for me. The hangover I suffered was only balanced by the memories of the previous night and the fun I had. Dancing the tango with Hal and doing the polka with Sharon were bright highlights in my muddled memory banks as well as sharing a rum and Coke with Gale while Melanie and Jack made a quick alcohol run. He didn't seem to have the slightest compunction about sharing a drink with me and I ended up having to sit next to him to do so. It was much later in the evening when I noticed that he had his arm around the back of the couch and was lightly stroking my shoulder.
Jhonna left at 2 and everyone helped me load my stuff at around 4 and I made it home thirty-five minutes later, crawled into bed and awoke as I was now. When the intercom buzzed hours later, I dragged myself over, hoping that it was Jhonna and was extremely surprised to hear Gale's voice.
"Hey, it's Gale."
"What the hell do you want?"
"Woo, somebody got bit by something last night."
"It's your fault. Too many shots."
"Are you going to let me up or am I going to stand on your doorstep talking about your alcoholism?"
I buzzed him up and stood in the doorway, bursting out in laughter as I saw him climbing the stairs slowly. It was obvious that he was hurting as well. "You asshole!"
"Quit bitching and pour me a drink."
I ushered him in and he followed me into the kitchen where I fixed us both strong Bushmills & Cokes. I sipped at mine until I was sure that my stomach wasn't going to rebel and was quite delighted when my headache slowly throbbed itself away. We took the drinks into the living room and I sparked up the big screen television and located a reality show that had video clips of people getting busted up.
We both seemed to like it and in minutes, we were hissing and squeezing each other's hands as we watched hapless individuals crash on motorcycles and other all-terrain vehicles and others who decided to test their destinies by propelling themselves in front of angry bulls and failing miserably. Nearly three hours had passed before I turned to him to ask a question.
"So, you never told me. What the hell are you doing here?"
Gale's smile melted a bit and he took a long pull on his drink, then sat up, fishing a folded envelope from his back pocket. "I forgot to pay you."
"You could have waited until tonight. I'm catering the night shoots as well, you know."
"Yeah, but I didn't want to wait." He handed me the envelope and went back to watching the show, groaning in pain when a toreador got drilled by an errant bull's horns. As I watched him, I understood why he was here and the realization both excited and depressed me. I had suddenly become the Fat Girl. Who is the Fat Girl, you might ask? The Fat Girl is a girl who is usually a smart, intelligent professional woman whom always ends up being the best friend to handsome guys. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride. I was now Gale Harold's bridesmaid.
While this realization burrowing itself into my skull, I sighed in inebriated acceptance and decided that it might be better to be the bridesmaid than to be someone who wasn't even invited to the party. Gale was the party and I was the wallflower. Oh, well. I refilled his drink and thumbed the remote over to another program, this one a documentary on the Warriors of Christendom with a special emphasis on El Cid.
I ducked into the kitchen and warmed up a huge hunk of seafood quiche, sliced it up and served him a couple of slices with oil-warmed green onions, cut and allowed to open in the fry grease. I thrust the plate in front of him without words and he accepted it silently, giving me a sly look as he took up the fork. Without a word, we tore into my quiche, the silence only broken by smacks and hums of appreciation. Gale cleaned his plate and set it on the coffee table, reaching for his drink.
"You could spoil a man, you know."
"Probably, but I haven't found anyone worthy of my method."
I smiled and collected our plates. "The man that decides to step to me will know what he's getting and he'll understand my method. I'm not an easy pull or a groupie or even a desperate Fat Girl who's waiting for a bone to be tossed her way. I'm a gem, a beautiful piece of precious glass that's buried in the earth, waiting for someone to notice its worth. I don't want someone who is interested in how well I can cook; I want someone who knows that there's a real woman behind the food." I growled angrily. "And the fat."
"You're fat?" He laughed, throwing his head back and crowing so heartily that I couldn't be mad. "Should I start calling you Weezy or Florida or ... what was the name of Roger's mama on What's Happening?"
"Her name was Mabel. And you forgot Nell Carter."
Gale smiled, standing and grabbing his jacket. "I gotta go." I escorted him to the door, avoiding his eyes. He pulled his coat on and I yanked his collar straight, eliciting another smile from him. "I'll see you later." When he leaned close and dropped a kiss on my cheek, I could barely think straight but I can tell you that I floated all the way to work that night.