The Ferris Wheel
Peter A. Weiss
Copyright © 2017 by Peter Weiss
All rights reserved.
This is a work of fiction. The names, characters, places and incidents are products of the writer’s imagination or have been used fictitiously and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, actual events, locales or organizations is entirely coincidental.
Like last year, they waited on line. Unlike last year, Paul knew they didn’t have to. “This gives you a chance to explain why you weren’t here last night, why you left me to think I might never see you again.”
“I had an early football practice this morning.”
“Well, this is big-league ball, Lilly. Last year, after we said bye, I had no plans to play. I didn’t get a scholarship or even apply for one. But then I saw a sign over at the athletic field saying they accepted walk-ons and it listed the dates and times. So I decided to try out. Don’t ask me why except it popped into my head and I went with it.
“I made the cut. Then I had to lose weight, gain speed and muscle and get myself back into prime shape. Took me six weeks, but I beat out one of the starting linebackers and had a pretty decent season.
“This year, I did great in camp. I did great in the scrimmages and pre-season games. The way the schedule worked out, we were lucky and got the weekend off, but the coach worked us really hard this morning. Actually we worked all day. No way I was going out last night knowing we were working out hard today.”
“And the point is…”
“I couldn’t risk messing up the practice.”
Lilly laughed. She let go Paul’s hand as the line moved forward. “Put your arm around me, Paul. You mean you couldn’t even come to see if I was here?”
“Honestly? I was afraid if I saw you I wouldn’t be able to drag myself away.”
“So playing ball is more important than me?”
“Well, yes and no.”
“What kind of answer is that?”
“An honest one.”
“When we’re up there,” Paul said pointing to the top of the Ferris wheel. He drew her face close to his and kissed her. Lilly kissed back and their tongues said hello. “Damn I missed you. I thought about you. I dreamed about you lots of times.”
“I wondered about you,” said Lilly. “I dreamt about you, but not lots of times.”
“You pick up any guys?”
“You want the truth?”
“When we’re up there,” she said.
Like last year, when it was their turn, Lilly stepped off to talk to the operator. Then the Ferris wheel turned a bit, until the number nineteen carriage came down and the people in it got out. Paul and Lilly stepped in and sat down.
“We’ll be on for awhile,” said Lilly.
“Good.” Paul put his arm around her but didn’t kiss her until they were quarter way up. Lilly kissed back, hard. She took Paul’s free hand in hers in her lap.
“So start talking.”
“Deal. Rock, paper, scissors.”
Paul won. “Well? You pick up any other guys?”
“A year’s a long time,” said Lilly. “A girl gets lonely. Specially one like me on the road all the time. I had plenty of chances you know. And I’m not getting any younger either. I turned twenty-one. That’s a damn big day.”
to be continued