Ever since I asked we had been silent.
“One more of cup of coffee?”, the waitress smiled, gazing at the jeweler’s box on the table.
“Yes, please”, I answered just to make her leave.
I took the cup for warmth; the coffee was way too bitter for me today.
You scrutinized the people passing by on the opposite side the window.
It was still raining.
“Shall I leave”, I asked, breaking the silence.
I knew you wanted to tell me to go, but you remained as silent as before.
Coffee grew colder; from far away I heard a dishwasher grumbling.
The coffee cups made me think of one of my favorite Bob Dylan songs. Below covered by Frazey Ford.
Friday Fictioneers, the exceptional center for 100 word flash-fiction. Rochelle does an excellent job of keeping it going… and it’s way more habit forming than the blackest of coffee.
September 26, 2018
I wonder what he asked? A proposal not gratefully received perhaps? The cold coffee seems to reflect their cooling relationship. Nice little vingette Bjorn.
It’s so common that we mistake… and yes I think he proposed.
Dark and moody, Bjorn, I like this very much
Thank you… it was the mood I wanted to capture…
Sometimes the bitterness of the coffee says it all. I have to admit I read this because the title brought me right to track #4 off Dylan’s ‘Desire.’ Love that song.
It was very much that song… and there are so many good versions though I think the first one is still the best.
Yeah, I heard Jack White’s years ago but Rivera on that violin in the original always gets me.
Great scene, plenty of depth 👍
Thank you… the scene and the mood is what I wanted to capture.
I often find vignettes like that more powerful, as when well written like yours, there’s enough information for a story and the rest is in the readers mind.
Poor man obviously misread his girlfriend’s feelings towards him or maybe marriage in general… why people choose public places, is beyond me.
And I love Frazey Ford’s voice. It is so unique.
I think he did misread it… and he might have spoiled it all because of that… Frazey Ford has one of my favorite voices…
Oh dear… poor fool.
“Yes, please”, I answered just to make her leave.
I love the honesty of that.
I doubt the coffee was any good.
One has to sympathize with the guy, whatever he asked, and I’m assuming it was a marriage proposal. And then, one wonders at her total lack of response, positive or negative. Maybe she was in a catatonic state 🙂
I think to just answer no or yes does not work… she just wanted to be somewhere else.
Could be. Still feel sorry for the poor guy 🙂
that song is interesting and fit the mood you have us with your fiction.
You could feel the somber vibe – the rain, the chill, the dishwasher noises….
The song is a classic… though Frazey’s is pretty new… but it was actually a story I got from the song.
I could totally see how the story came from that song –
and seriously, after reading it – and then hearing the song – it was kind of an experience – well done
A marriage proposal gone wrong?
You did a great job of matching the mood of the music.
The focus while writing was on the mood part… somehow that is both the hardest and easiest to convey.
The air crackled with the awkwardness between them. I hadn’t heard Frazey before. Love her voice. And thank your kind words. 😉 I find FF highly addictive. Next month marks my 6th anniversary as facilitator. No plans to quit anytime soon. 😀
Thank you… yes the awkwardness and humiliation was what I wanted to capture… and your 6 year marks my 6 years of writing too. I still have a few years to go in managing dVerse…
Shame, why hang around? I’d flee for the nearest pub I think if i’d been declined, drown in something other than the bitterness of the coffee. Liked it a lot.
I think it’s a natural instinct of fleeing danger.
Excellent piece, Bjorn. I feel for the guy. The silence is even worse than saying no.
But silence do leave you with the tiniest bit of hope.
So much conveyed in so little words – well done!
I’m glad you thought so… I was not in that mood, and maybe that made it easier to write.
So stark and uncomfortable. I feel for him, wondering how she could be so cold.
I don’t think she is cold…just feeling as awkward as him
Unable to decide or unwilling to commit?
Maybe a bit of both…
This so beautifully depicted the awkwardness of the situation. And that last line was cream on the coffee 🙂
The sound of a dishwasher can be unbearable
Oh dear, that didn’t go quite as planned, poor chap. I like how you made the surroundings reflect the mood – cold, raining, bitter coffee.
I think the surrounding always reflect your mood…. there are other occasions when it might feel like sunshine in the middle of rain
You expertly use the surroundings of the coffee shop to conjure a mood, but what lifts this story to a higher level is the silence of the woman. What is she feeling? Embarrassment? Indecision? Anger? Regret that the narrator has spoiled a good friendship? Guilt – ah, there’s a likely one. She could well be thinking “What on earth did I do to give him the wrong idea?”, and trying to find the words to say so, and to somehow make him feel better. There is an awkwardness about the whole scene that implies something like that.
Excellent writing, Bjorn!
I think it could be a little bit of that… I wonder how someone would write her story from her point of view.
Penny just did! And quite well… 😉
I shuffled in my seat reading this. Awkward or what?
Click to read my FriFic tale!
It’s not a situation you should put yourself in… and I’m sure every man has felt this to some extent at some point in life
Superb piece, Bjorn.
You capture the awkwardness exactly, I was squirming while I read it.
And great song, of course, Bobby is still the man!
Good that the emotion was conveyed… isn’t that what stories should do?
They should indeed, but so rarely do in 100 words.
i like how the coffee grew cold, it summarises the answer to a difficult situation, Did he take the jewellery?
I think he left it on the table and left… then I do not know…. maybe he got it back in the mail
I think this might mark a turning point in their relationship If she hasn’t already said no, I think all the signals are that she’s about to. Quite atmospheric.
I wonder if she will ever dare to say no… but she will never say yes.
You captured the uncomfortable silence perfectly. I don’t know if I could stay at the table after such speechless rejection.
I’m sure I would go crazy…
I like the gaps you left in the story that were indirectly answered by the words surrounding them. A gray mood you set here. Well done!
There was nothing gray in picture… still I just had to imagine cold coffee to get into the mood.
The dishwasher grumbling was a perfect finish to a failed evening.
Listening to the sound of a dishwasher has to be a terrible way to spend an evening.
silence is golden. she’s still thinking about his proposal through. he should give her all the time to make up her mind…. at least, until closing time.
You never know… those things happen too… sometimes it takes time to decide.
Not a happy proposal I’m afraid. I wonder why?
Maybe she thought they were more like friends… (for real)
Oh dear, he got that one wrong. I hope she was just in shock because she comes across as quite ungracious and uncaring. This is packed full of emotion portrayed so well by silence and small movements, the hearing the dishwasher etc. Love it.
I think there is nothing more overpowering than the sound of silence.
This definitely feels like one of those deafening silences.
I think marriage proposals in public places are very risky. I could almost feel the cool air.
I imagined how it would be sitting there…
You commented that it would be interesting if somebody wrote the scene from the girl’s pov. So I’ve had a go. It’s not as good as your story, in that it doesn’t evoke the mood as powerfully – but it was fun to do, and I hope it will be interesting to read!
It was an excellent read… and frankly I think the voice was an excellent complement to the moody one I had it… maybe we should continue this with more installment…
Well that was awkward. I sense a proposal gone wrong. Excellent little vignette.
I think it was a proposal… and there might be a yes.. or something more like Penny’s story
How interesting that he stayed even though he knew she wanted him to leave. How terribly uncomfortable for all. Crossed messages for sure.
Leaving would admitting defeat… very very hard
The tension in this piece is brilliant. It’s very intriguing. The open-ended feel of the piece works very well.
Open ending works well sometimes… I can see that by the comments.
I am drawn to the spaces in between and the reason for the silence. I doubt she is acting out of malice or spite but more along the lines of confusion and a desire to somehow make things right or turn back time. The awkward uncomfortableness between them is well written.
It would be very very uncomfortable for both… maybe one of those moments were being friends is what matter most.
I felt the awkwardness of the story. Well-done!
It felt awkward to write it… 🙂
Masterful story telling,
Thank you 🙂
Hard to see how two people can miscommunicate to the extent that one is convinced of the opposite of the truth. Woman being evasive or fakely nice, men being overconfident or singleminded. A recipe for disaster, orat any rate, hurt feelings.
Oh my….I lived this. My ex asked me to marry him and I had to tell him no. I didn’t want to break up I just didn’t feel like it was time. But our relationship cooled dramatically after this. You’ve told it well.
Seems like the ring was not accepted. Poor chap. But I guess there’s dilemma in the opposite party too! Maybe the feelings are not reciprocated or the time isn’t right yet!
I wonder how many relationships are destroyed because one party want to move faster.
Agree! But that’s how life is! 😦
I adore this, there is something hypnotizing in the story that I just can’t put my finger on.
Maybe it’s the way we all seem to be eaves dropping in their worst moment.
Great emotion in this silence