Wayne Chance is twenty-eight. He’s an old school chum who showed up after an absence of several years. He’s a quiet fellow, Chance, and for reasons only they know none of the dogs barked as he walked by their lockup on his way to the house.
Chance walked up the old wooden steps, dropped his kitbag on the deck, knocked on the open door then walked in. Walked down the hall, through the house to the kitchen then sat at the table waiting for someone to show up.
Pulled out a bag of the makings, rolled a smoke, lit it and sucked back so hard it sparkled. Got up and walked to the fridge, opened it and looked inside, inserted an empty hand and withdrew a full one. Took two steps to the overhead cabinet, opened that and took out two glasses. Came back to the table, set down the glasses, dug a coin out of his fob pocket and jigged the cap off the beer, put that on the table and sat down again. Poured two beers. Ashed his smoke in his hand, waited.
Later that night we were watching television, a leopard leaping at a giraffe’s neck, clawing its bloody path back down to the ground as it fell away.
Chance took another smoke outside during the ad break, came back in after five minutes and sat down, looked at the TV.
‘I flicked the channel.’
Chance nodded at the screen.
‘What are we looking at?’
‘Some bloke’s gone down a Croation coal mine.’
Chance sat forward.
‘He’s looking for glow worms.’
Old mates. No mercy.
Was the sound down on the TV and the stereo on with ….. maybe Visions of the Emerald Beyond?
The TV was off, took the silly bugger fifteen seconds to work it out.
Good smoke will do that to you, especially with nothing much to view on the TV anyway. It’s a vacant moment that is quite comforting to some.