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The Jersey Devil Gets a Hug



Julia bowed her head, struggling to control her seething thoughts, causing her shoulders to heave; a diner was not the place to release this week’s tension. Her eyes scanned the booths around her for anything to claim her attention. She tried not to roll her eyes as polite conversation wafted in the air and a chipper waitress apologized for clumsily spilling coffee. Her inner monologue was a geyser waiting to spew.

Ugh. Small talk. Fuck that shit.

No.

No.

No.

Do a 180 with your thoughts Julia!

AHHHHH!

A shelf of fake plants! Stare at that plastic piece of shit!

Fake aloe vera? I bet that bitch is chewy.

Dingalingaling! The diner door opened as Julia turned to see Miguel walk towards her. She smiled but her reflection in the window revealed a scowl.

FUCK.

Miguel slid next o her, making the booth’s seat rise along with her libido. Angry sex wasn’t on her agenda, but neither was the “Fuckstorm”, a cocktail heroically mixing tequila and Goldschlager, which she inhaled five minutes ago.

“¿Cómo estás? Miguel greeted her.

“Fine. Good. Muy bien. Fuck. Sorry, I don’t know if I can handle a Spanish lesson today.”

Miguel searched her face. His smile fell to the side and he released a prolonged and content sigh. He was always in a good mood and today that pissed her off. He leaned in and the cheery sent of cloves loosened Julia’s nostrils, “We’ve only known each other for a few months…” These few words catapulted Julia’s body into rigidity; she braced herself for another platitude about clouds having silver linings. “…but I know you well enough to see that your heart is light. It floats in the world like a lost yellow balloon, giving those that see it moments of cherished wonder everywhere it goes.”

Julia blinked, the caustic pain in her veins paused as the compliment settled around them. The kindness in his words spilled over her. Slowly the hostility that had been choking her temperament relinquished, as the negativity that had been controlling her dripped out of her eyes.

In time, she now knew, she’d be free.

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