by Alice Workman
Terri dragged herself into the kitchen, dropping her coat on a chair, and found Jim staring blankly at the open fridge. “Let’s go out tonight.”
Jim picked her up and spun around, making her squeal. “Great idea! We have that $50 Aunt Harriet sent us.”
“Let’s see a movie. A double feature! With buckets of popcorn, M&M’s and soda.” He licked his lips as though they were already coated with butter and salt.
Terri grabbed his shoulders excitedly. “Jim! The Operetta Club is doing Pirates of Penzance tonight. I didn’t mention it before, because I didn’t think we could afford it, and by the time Aunt Harriet’s check came I thought they were sold out, but I heard that there are a few seats left, and—“
“And you’ve seen it a billion times on DVD.”
“That’s not the same!”
“No, it’s worse. A real man wouldn’t be caught dead in that audience.”
Terri grinned, sliding her arm through his. “That’s why I’m taking you while you’re still living.”
Jim shook his head. “Let’s order pizzas—loaded. Rent some movies. Have a marathon!”
She scowled. “I want to go out. And we can afford better than pizza for once. Let’s go to The Golden Glove.”
“Golden Gauntlet,” he sneered. “They charge $50 just to smell the food!”
“You always make fun of what I want to do.”
“I have to make fun—or I don’t get any. Not around you.”
“You think you’d have more fun without me?”
“Go ahead then,” she challenged. “Give me half of the money. We’ll each do what we want.”
“You have it all—give me half!”
“You cashed the check, remember? No, of course you don’t. You forget everything.”
“You just think I’ve forgotten because you can’t remember.” He grabbed her purse. “I’ll bet you my half it’s in here.”
“Get out of my purse! You’ll mess it all up!”
“Like it’s so organized!”
They jumped when the doorbell buzzed. Jim answered it, still holding the purse.
“Hey, Jim. Nice purse. Going somewhere fancy tonight?”
Terri snickered. Jim turned crimson, and quickly shoved the purse at Terri. “Todd. Hi. What’s up?”
“I came for the money you owe me.” Jim looked blank. “Fifty bucks. Remember?”
“Didn’t I pay you back?”
“Nope. Boy, your memory’s getting bad!”
Terri poked Jim in the ribs, glowering at him.
With a smirk, Jim snatched her purse, pulled out $50 and handed it over to Todd with a flourish. Terri sulkily leaned against the wall, arms crossed. “So, what are your plans for tonight, Todd?”
Todd lovingly caressed the $50 bill lying in his palm. “Actually,” he looked up, “Terri, would you like to go out with me tonight?”
Terri brightened and dashed into the kitchen, calling, “I’ll get my coat!” Jim’s hands tightened into fists.
Todd laughed. “Don’t worry, Jim. I’ll take good care of your sister.” He waved the bill. “There’s a lot we could do for fifty bucks.”