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Saturday, August 25

We'll Never Have Paris

"We’ll Never Have Paris"
Short fiction - Humor
by Rod Drake

It was just like the ending of Casablanca. Except that seventeen-year-old Tony and fifteen-year-old Mia weren’t at an airport on a rainy night, trying desperately to escape the Nazis and neither looked much like a world-weary Humphrey Bogart or a heart-broken Ingrid Bergman.

Mia was being driven by her parents to a private school several states away which would effectively end Tony and Mia’s budding relationship. Tony had no crafty ally like Claude Rains on his side or a loyal sidekick like Sam to play as “Time Goes By” and watch his back, plus Tony certainly didn’t want to do the noble thing and give up Mia for a greater cause. It wasn’t World War II, and Mia didn’t have a brilliant young husband important to the war effort anyway. They weren’t in black-and-white Morocco either, wherever that was. This was Oxnard, California.

Mia’s parents wanted the best for their only daughter, and Tony wasn’t it. A nice boy, they said, but not nice enough. Nice enough meant his lack of future plans, ambition, personality and social position. Tony hoped to become a skateboard professional, a world champion with tons of cool endorsements and endless publicity. His parents were divorced, and his mother spent a lot of time drinking at a downtown bar, which wasn’t named Rick’s CafĂ© Americain, nor was it anywhere near that classy.

Tony hoped Mia would run away with him, come on the national skateboarding circuit with him, once he figured out how to get on it and where it was. She seemed less enamored of the idea than Ilsa was of running away with Rick in Casablanca. In fact, she appeared to actually be looking forward to the private school out east. Tony complained that long-distance relationships don’t work, and Mia cheerily agreed with him. Tony and Mia didn’t even have Paris to remember.

After a brief hug with Mia, more friendship than anything else, her parents’ car pulled quickly out of the driveway as Tony stood in the street, hoping to see Mia’s tear-streaked face in the back window, but she was facing forward, listening to her iPod and bopping to the music.

Tony decided this wasn’t like the ending of Casablanca at all.

Rod Drake has been to Hollywood, he has been to Deadwood, and he keeps on searching for a heart of gold. Check out Rod's other stories published in Flashes of Speculation, Flash Forward, MicroHorror, Six Sentences and AcmeShorts.

1 reactions:

Kelly Parra said...

Thanks for the latest edition, Rod!!