January 6, 2014

January 6th, 2014 StoryStarter prompt: I began to question the randomness of bumping into him after the fifth time in three days...

Elsa and I have been meeting at the same corner cafe every Thursday morning for three years. It was our time to catch up and brag or complain about everything that was right or wrong with our lives at the time. Our topics of discussion ranged from our love lives, (or in my case, the lack thereof), our jobs, the latest movie we wanted to see, or what books we were reading.

That was the first time I saw him. We literally bumped into one another, him coming in, and me making my way over to join Elsa carrying a piping hot extra large french vanilla latte. He apologized profusely with a warm southern drawl. Immediately, I was charmed. As drop-dead gorgeous as he was, one little ol coffee stain down the front of my brand new blouse wasn't that noticeable.

"At least let me buy you another," he drawled.

"It's no big deal. I should have been watching where I was going," I told him.

"No, I insist. Where are you sitting?" he asked.

I pointed across the room to Elsa, "See the redhead over there?"

He followed my pointed finger and nodded. "The one who looks like Orphan Annie?"

I chuckled. Actually, it came out more like an oh, so attractive snort. I bit my bottom lip. "Yes, but don't let her hear you say that," I whispered.

"Okay. You go sit, I'll bring your coffee to you," he said.

I quickly joined Elsa. 

"Who is that?" she asked.

I shrugged and told her, "Just some guy who thought I needed to wear my coffee this morning." I tucked my short blonde hair behind my ear and hoped I didn't look like a complete wreck.

"He's kind of cute," she pointed out. 

"I guess. I didn't really notice," I lied. Fact was, he was cute. He was the kind of guy girls probably went out of their way to bump into on a regular basis.

"My ass you didn't notice," Elsa giggled.

In a few minutes, he arrived with a refill. "My name's Winston, by the way," he said.

"Like Churchill?" I managed brilliantly.

He frowned and said, "No like the cigarette. My daddy was a big Nascar fan."

"Well, Winston like the cigarette, I'm Casey. Nice to meet you."

Elsa stuck her hand across the table. "And I'm Elsa. Are you married?" My mouth popped open and I kicked her under the table.

He laughed, obviously taking Elsa's bluntness in stride. "No. Not married."

"Would you care to join us?" I asked.

"No, but thank you. I'm afraid I have to get to a meeting this morning." He smiled and I melted into a hot mess as I stared up into his amazing green eyes. "It was great bumping into you Casey. Nice meeting you Annie. Gotta go."

I nearly spit out my coffee when he called Elsa "Annie." She was too enamored by his good looks to even correct him.

The second time our paths crossed, was Friday after work. I had stopped at Nelson's deli to pick up some pasta salad to go with my sandwich for dinner that night. I stood at the deli counter, patiently waiting my turn when I heard his unmistakable southern charm. 

"What do you recommend?" Winston asked over my shoulder.

Surprised, I turned to face him. "That depends on what you like," I smiled.

"I'm awfully fond of sassy little blondes. But, somehow, I don't think that's what you were referring to," he said.

My cheeks heated up. "Um. Well, no."

"Oh you're a blusher. I'll have to remember that," he grinned and I noticed that he had only one dimple. 

I suggested a few things from the deli case, got the pasta salad for myself, and we said our goodbyes...again.

The third time I saw him was out for my early run on Saturday morning. I was doing my usual five mile jog around the park, enjoying the crisp fall air. Running along, lost in thought, someone fell into step beside me. "We've really got to stop meeting like this, Casey," he said.

My eyes widened and I said, "I'm not sure if I should be worried that you're some sort of psycho stalker or if I should chalk it up to coincidence," I told him.

His mouth twisted into a smirk. "No, I'm neither. I'm beginning to think I'm just incredibly lucky," he said before picking up the pace and running off ahead of me.

Later Saturday, I decided to browse the antique shops downtown guessed it. I ran into Winston.  

By Sunday afternoon, I'd somehow managed to "run into" Winston yet again, and I began to question the randomness of bumping into him after the fifth time in three days.

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Lori L. Clark

Lori L. Clark currently resides in Hazelwood, MO with three rescue dogs. When Lori isn't listening to the voices in her head, waiting for the next creative inspiration to strike, she also loves to read, run, paint pet portraits and save dogs. Email Lori at


  1. This was fun!

  2. Did you notice how both of ours are in coffee shops? LOL

  3. Hiya

    Wow you wrote a heap for this one. Well done. It was a great piece. I think so far this is my favourite prompt.

    Here's mine:



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