Jim sat down on a red stool. He traced his finger along the marble counter top. He glanced up at the television set attached to the wall. The station was set to the local weather station, and the tv was on mute. In the background, The Doors was playing in tribute to the diner’s cook. He couldn’t remember the name to the song playing, but he knew the next one very well. People are strange, he thought as he glanced over his shoulder to the two government agents parked in a booth beside the window.
“I hate this song.” David Peters sat on the stool next to him. “It’s really sad that the cook died, but do we have to listen to The Doors all day, every day because of it? Coffee. Milk and sugar,” he said to a waitress in a short, pink uniform. “What’s her problem,” he asked, noting the sour look on her face as she walked away from them.
“She was probably friends with the cook.” The waitress returned, placing Jim’s coffee down in front of him, and then she gave him a smile. She refused to look at David Peters. “I think you hurt her feelings.”
“Well, life’s a bitch.” David Peters stared at Jim for a moment. “Long day?”
Jim looked over his shoulder at the two government agents nearby. David did not follow his gaze. He took a long sip of his coffee, savoring its flavor. “Something like that,” he finally said. “You going to ask about that journal?”
“No. I doubt that you still even have it.”
“Why would you say that?”
“I don’t know.” His coffee was dropped down before him. Then, the waitress placed two sugar packets nearby, followed by a small cup of cream. “I did say milk,” David muttered under his breath. “Whatever. Friday night.”
“Yes. It is,” Jim replied. “So, what are you doing here, David?”
“It’s here or the Green Woods.”
“Yeah, Jim. That’s what we teachers call the spot, where the kids like to go and get high and drunk. They’re either there or here or at one of their houses, doing something that they probably shouldn’t be. There’s not much else to do in this small town.”
“I take it that you are not from a small town.”
“No. I’m not.”
“So, why are you here, teaching in a small town?” Jim watched the man beside him slowly drink his coffee. “Something brought you here.”
“You’re too smart. Do you know that,” and David looked over at him. “I’m here right now because I don’t sleep.”
“You don’t sleep? Teaching keeping you up at night?”
“No. The monsters do,” and he finished his coffee.
Now Online: Lizardian Chapter 31