The Cake

 

Draft 1.
The Cake. By Patrick Fisher.

I first met the cake at Dino’s Diner; a smoky, dangerous bar in an unfashionable part of town. It sat at the bar alone, staring into its whiskey on the rocks. I slid onto the stool beside it, and threw my own order at the barman; double vodka, no junk. As he poured my drink I turned my head to the cake.
“Rough day?” I asked.
“You wouldn’t believe it if I told you.” The cake replied. It through down the last splash of whiskey and nodded to the bartender for another. A dollop of icing dripped onto the bar as it put the glass down. A three piece band was unpacking its gear in the corner.
“Ever been in love?” The cake asked me. I should have guessed.
“Twice,” I nodded. I took a sip of my drink. The band started up with a slow one. The lead singer, a gorgeous red head, began to whisper something about love into the microphone.
“That’s the trouble,” the cake replied. “For every red-headed angel out there, there’s a devil in the wings. I can’t seem to pick it until too late.”
I nodded in silence, letting the music speak for me. We both ordered new drinks.
The cake began to cry quietly, raising a hand to catch the tears. I raised my hand and slapped its back gently, splattering some cream.
“There’ll be others.” Not great advice, but I’ve never been much good at words.
“I know,” sobbed the cake. It breathed in through its teeth, and wiped its eyes on a napkin.
We sat through the next few songs without speaking, then the band took a break. The cake got up to leave.
“Thanks for the drink.” He pushed some cash into my hand, and walked out of the bar.

Draft 2.
The Cake. By Patrick Fisher.

I first met the cake at Dino’s, a smoky hole-in-the-wall joint downtown. The cake sat at the bar, alone, staring into a whiskey on the rocks. I slid onto the stool beside it, and murmured my own order to the barman; double vodka, no junk. He poured the drink, and I turned my head to the cake.
“Rough day?” I asked.
“You wouldn’t believe it if I told you.” The cake replied. It drank the last splash of whiskey and nodded to the bartender for another. A dollop of icing dripped onto the floor as it put the glass down. A three piece band was unpacking its gear in the corner.
“Ever been in love?” The cake asked me. I should have guessed he had a woman on his mind.
“Twice,” I nodded, and took a sip of my drink. The band started up with a slow number heavy on sax. The lead singer, a gorgeous red head, began to whisper something about love into the microphone.
“That’s the trouble,” the cake replied. “For every red-headed angel out there, there’s a devil in the wings. I can’t seem to pick it until too late.”
I nodded in silence. It had been a year since my own angel ran off like the tart she was. We both ordered new drinks.
The cake sighed. I raised my hand and slapped its back gently, splattering some cream.
“There’ll be others.” Not great advice, but I’ve never been much good at words.
“I know,” breathed the cake.
We sat through the next few songs without speaking, then the band took a break. The cake got up to leave.
“Thanks for the drink.” He pushed some cash into a fold in my pastry, and walked out of the bar.

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Draft 3 (final)
The Cake. By Patrick Fisher.

I first met the cake at Dino’s; a smoky, sleazy joint downtown. It sat at the bar alone, staring into a whiskey on the rocks. I slid onto the stool beside it, and murmured my own order to the barman; double vodka, no junk. A few moments later he handed me the spirit.
“Rough day?” I asked the cake.
“You wouldn’t believe it if I told you.” The cake replied. It drank the last splash of whiskey and nodded to the bartender for another. A dollop of icing dripped onto the floor as it put the glass down. A three piece band was unpacking its gear in the corner.
“Ever been in love?” The cake asked me. I should have guessed he had a woman on his mind.
“Twice,” I nodded, and took a sip of my drink. The band started up with a slow number, heavy on sax. The lead singer, a gorgeous red head, began to whisper something about love into the microphone.
“That’s the trouble, I guess.” The cake replied. “For every red-headed angel out there, there’s a devil in the wings. I can’t seem to pick it until too late.”
I nodded in silence. It had been a year since my own angel ran off like the tart she was. We both ordered new drinks.
The cake sighed. I raised my hand and slapped its back gently, splattering some cream.
“There’ll be others.” Not great advice, but I’ve never been much good with words.
“I know,” replied the cake quietly.
We sat through the next few songs without speaking, then the band took a break. The cake got up to leave.
“Thanks for the drink.” He pushed some cash into a fold in my pastry, and walked out into the rain.