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Wine Down

by Mary Haynes 2 years ago in fact or fiction
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Merlot Entry

With Permission of the Artist

Wine Down

by Mary Haynes

Andy was an old soul, a romantic renaissance man, at least that's what everyone told him. He had many friends; almost everyone he met liked him immediately. He made a point of prioritizing social time with friends and colleagues from law school, even though he didn't fully understand the games people played.

Dating was always a bit of a challenge; he found himself drawn to older women for the ease of conversation and the lack of drama. He felt comfortable. The relationships always went well until the lack of time and short-term financial stability became an issue. The gap in age and expectations eventually became too much. Andy needed to focus on passing the bar exam. Although he loved kids, he felt he wasn't in the position to be able to fill the Dad shoes just yet.

One night after a lengthy criminology lecture, the group got together to decompress at the local pub. Sarah plopped down into the seat next to Andy and sighed deeply!

"What a day, declared Sarah! My laptop had some sort of temper tantrum and ate my case brief. I had to write the entire thing over again at three in the morning!"

"I'm sorry, that's really frustrating, but you were able to get it done in time, right? Andy asked.

Sarah smiled and did a face plant. "I'm so sorry, I didn't mean to vent. Yes, I submitted it ten minutes before the deadline. I thought if I came here for a couple of drinks with the group, I'd feel better."

"No worries at all, let's get you a drink." Andy motioned for the bartender.

The group was getting loud. Debates about tonight's lecture made their way around the table. It was one of the things Andy enjoyed about this group; he savored the intelligent banter. It invariably became heated before dissolving into somewhat tipsy attempts at impressions of professors and 'a lawyer walks into a bar' jokes.

The crowd thinned, Andy paid his tab and reached for his jacket. He asked Sarah if she was okay getting home. Sarah grabbed her coat. "Let's walk! I still have some steam to blow off."

They discovered they lived in the same direction. After walking a few blocks, lightning crackled, and torrential rain pelted them.

"I think we should see if we can pull over a taxi, said Andy. He saw one coming and flagged it down. They rushed in and looked at each other, soaking wet and stunned. They both started to laugh.

The taxi radio was playing, and Sarah yelled to the driver, "Hey, can you please turn that up? It's my favourite song, 'Wine Down'!"

The driver obliged, and Sarah sang along.

"You're a country music fan? Andy asked.

"I like all music, but this song just speaks to me. You know, wine down, get it? Sarah grinned, making downward swooping gestures with her hand. We all need to just chill, sit back and find some quiet time to relax. With someone would be nice too." Sarah turned away, watching the rain on the window, lost in a dream of her own.

The taxi pulled up at her apartment, and Sarah opened the door to get out. Andy said goodnight, then surprised himself by adding that maybe they should get together for dinner sometime.

"Like a date?" Sarah asked.

Andy looked uncomfortable, but Sarah smiled and nodded. "Yes, I'd like that! When and where?"

"There's a patio on the beach right off Lakeshore. We can get a table so we can see the boats on the lake and watch the volleyball players." Andy offered.

"Perfect! Sarah answered. How about Saturday afternoon? I'll meet you there."

Andy managed to mumble, "That would be great!"

As weeks at law school go, it dragged on. Andy, ever the romantic, was busy making plans, second-guessing them, and re-planning.

Saturday came, and Andy headed to the beach. He had visited earlier in the week to talk to the manager. He really wanted Sarah to have a great time and find the relaxation she said she needed.

Sarah arrived, looking like sunshine in yellow shorts and a sunflower print tank. She smiled and sat down.

The waiter arrived with a bottle of Audacity Merlot and poured two glasses. Andy raised his glass. Sarah clinked glasses with his.

"This is just a little piece of heaven! It's perfect. I can't believe I've never been here before. Thank you, it's just what I needed!" Sara leaned back in her chair, breathing in the warm breeze.

Andy nodded to the DJ, and ‘Wine Down’ started playing on the speakers. Sarah's eyes lit up. She grinned and pulled Andy up out of his seat.

"Dance with me, Andy. Let's 'Wine Down' together!"

fact or fiction

About the author

Mary Haynes

Mary Haynes splits her time between a romantic old sailboat in tropical waters and a beach home in Ontario. A wanderer, by fate, she embraces wherever she roams! Mary recently completed her first children’s book, “Who Ate My Peppers?”

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