A Joyous Affair (14)

Samantha Flint exited her black sedan three blocks before the home of Redmond and Annette Gardner. The confidence she exuded hit Foley in the face as he lagged behind her.

“Foley, my package, please,” said Samantha, smiling, as the obtuse bartender handed her a brown-wrapped object.

“Uh-uh…Samantha. What exactly are we doing here? I mean you have us chauffeured to this place that reeks of fish in a creepy black car that people have probably died in, and you have a gun with you. I know I said I’d help, but now I’m not so sure I like where you’re going with this.” Foley tried to sound imposing. BANG.

Samantha fired her pistol in the air. Foley shrunk back, thinking he’d been shot. “Listen, bar fungus, you’ve done the easy stuff. Now it’s my turn. We’re not doing anything illegal…just yet,” said Samantha. “I’m paying Mrs. Gardner a visit, that’s all. I’m sure she’d be thrilled to meet an old friend of Red’s.”

Foley shuddered. “You know, you keep saying all this like you’re having freakin’ tea and crumpets with this woman,” his voice cracked, “But you have a gun in your hand,” he whimpered, “And-and I’m not sure how I feel about that! For all I know, you’re going over there to shoot her up, rob the place, the kill me!”

“Oh Foley dear,” Samantha said, smiling, “What a marvelous idea.” She rubbed the gun in her hand, regarding it with something a little more sinister than a twinkle in her eye. “Thank you, Foley,” she said, planting her lips on his.

***

Laura and Frank Gardner sat next to each other, admiring their daughter and the fine young man that sat next to her.

“Mom, this chicken looks great. Since when do we do Southern Comfort?” joked Elaine, biting into a thigh.

“Oh you know I love a good piece of chicken once in awhile!” Laura said, awkwardly. “I saw this one in Fletcher’s the other day, and I said to myself, ‘Now that’s a good piece of chicken,” so I picked it up and here we are, all so happy…” Frank Gardner nudged his wife under the table.

“These potatoes look great, too, Mrs. G. You’ve really outdone yourself!” said Teddy Burke.

“Yeah Mom, fantastic,” said Elaine, turning to Teddy, “I’m sorry, but your mother has nothing on my mom’s cooking,” nudging Teddy. He smiled.

Elaine bit into a spoonful of mashed potatoes. The others looked at her, gaping. “What?” said Elaine, garbling her words through the food. “Nothing,” was the unanimous reply. She bit in again, then her face changed color.

“Oh my God, Teddy she’s choking!” shrieked Laura. Teddy rushed to his feet to administer the Heimlich. On the third thrust, a wad of potatoes flew from Elaine’s mouth, and landed with a clang on the floor. Teddy rushed to chewed mass, then back to Elaine. Elaine, confused, tried to speak, but Teddy cut her off.

“Elaine Gardner, though I almost killed you with this,” he showed her the ring, “Will you marry me?”

Elaine’s face went from purple to red with joy. Wiping the potato from her face, she said, “You ass! Yes! Yes! Of course I’ll marry you!” They kissed.

Laura and Frank stood back, unbelievably happy, and forever amused by the scene that had just taken place. Life was perfect.

END

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