Just Friends (A short story.)


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1. Part One.

As a child I’ve watched my mum bounce from husband to husband; I’ve had so many fathers that by the time I turned 16, I simply lost count. I don’t know if she really loved them or if she was just after the money, but at a young age I’ve already learned that love wasn’t as easily to find as most would think.

Today was the usual; working my shift at the pub and sending flirtatious smiles at my costumers in hopes that my tip jar will be filled by the end of the night. I glanced around the bar, noticing a few regulars and my eye catches this boy talking to a woman significantly older than him. He stood out to me; this fashionable boy in a crowd of sophisticated women and rugged men. I’ve actually seen him here quite a few times, always chatting up women.

I watched as this kid smirks at the woman and then whispers something into her ear. The woman, probably old enough to be his mother, smiles and blushes; I raise an eyebrow and continue to clean shot glasses while watching him. He was pretty enough with a nice smile and beautiful curls, but I wasn’t close enough to make out his other facial features. The woman slips him her number and then walks away as the boy smirks again and checks out the woman’s bum as she walks out. I laugh to myself and place the clean shot glasses in order.

“Vodka on the rocks.”

I glance up and there he was; now I know what the woman was so charmed by. He was handsome; with striking green eyes, a strong nose, chiseled jaw, a single dimple, and beautiful lips that seem to be always smiling.

“Are you even old enough to drink?” I said with a raised eyebrow. He leans against the bar with a charming smile and does a hairflip. Oh, I think he’s trying to charm me into giving him some vodka.

“I’m perfectly legal to drink; we can discuss this privately if you want to pursue this matter.” He says smoothly and I lean forward, pretending to be completely charmed. But then I smirk and hold my hand out.

“That’s cute, ID please.”

He looks a little shock, but he quickly covers it up, and reaches into his wallet for his ID. I look at the ID and then glance at him, handing him back the card.

“Vodka on the rocks, Mr. Styles?” I said with a teasing tone as I got out a glass and put a couple of ice cubes in it before pouring vodka in the glass.

“I think you looked at my ID only for my name.” He said, taking the drink from me. I smirk and tilt my head innocently.

"I'm Cherokee, By the way,''I looked him over and grinned. “Maybe when you look like you’re old enough to shave, then I’ll stop asking for you ID.”

Harry laughs loudly, clearly more amused than hurt. “Ouch! Do you charm all men like this?”

“They seem to like it.” I said. Harry then leans forward.

“So you’re a player?” He questions. I roll my eyes and wipe some more shot glasses.

“I’m just flirty.”

“Are you any good at it?” He asks, sipping at his drink.

“I’m not sure, why don’t you let me know?” This boy was very interesting. He laughs and plays with the almost empty glass.

“I wouldn’t know, you’ve been so mean to me.”

“That’s because I know your type.” I said, taking his drink and finishing it. Harry looks even more amused now. “You flirt with women at bars, gather up these numbers, and start booking your one night stands. Except, you’re young, you’ve probably haven’t bedded more than…I’m guessing 5 women. I’m guessing 1 was your actual girlfriend and then the other four were just women you’ve charmed.”

Harry laughs at my study of him. “Wow, you’re a real profiler aren’t you?”

“You’re not denying it, so I’m guessing I’m right.” I said, leaning against the edge of the bar. Harry also leans forward, his face close to mine. He looks even more beautiful up close.

“Don’t underestimate me, I’m quite the charmer.”

“Fine.” I pull away and glance behind him. “There’s a woman coming over here, looks like she’s in her late 20’s, probably successful in her career. Show me how good you are.”

I plaster on a fake smile as the woman approaches the bar. “An apple martini please.”

“Right away.” I say, glancing at Harry who’s playing with his empty glass. Harry finally glances up at me and then smirks as I hand the drink to the woman. Then he turns to the woman, putting on a charming smile.

“I’m sorry, you must get this very often, but I find you quite stunning.” He says as the woman looks surprised and sips at her drink. I want to start laughing right there and now but I averted my eyes and tried to focus on the bar counter.

“Wow, you’re very forward.” She comments acting nonchalant, but I could tell by the way she’s blushing and constantly sipping at her drink that Harry has her.

“Not at all, but you’re just so beautiful that I had to tell you. I’m Harry by the way.” He says, holding a hand out.

“Selene.” She says, taking his hand. Instead of shaking it Harry softly kisses her hand.

“It’s been a pleasure.” He says, sitting back on the bar stool and just like he’s captured her interest and ended the conversation at the same time. But Selene doesn’t notice and blushes as she walks away with her drink.

“I admit, you’re pretty good.” I said nodded, impressed.

“I told you not to underestimate me.” He says. “Another vodka on the rocks, since you finished my first one.”

“How about this.” I said, taking out another vodka glass and putting cubes in it. “We’ll flirt with the same person and if you win then you get free drinks whenever you’re here.”

Harry laughs and leans forward, interested. “And if you win?”

“I’m going to be nice and just request a large tip.” I said with a smirk, pouring vodka into the glass and sliding it towards him. “In fact, I’ll let you pick the person.”

Harry grins and scans the pub. Then he turns back to me. “Woman in the purple dress, blonde hair, looks about 30 years old.”

I glance at the woman and smirk at Harry. “Easy.”

“It’s a woman though; I thought you only charmed men.” He says, impressed by how calm I was.

“I do only charm men, but women are just as easy.” I said as she approaches the bar.

“Hello, love.” Harry says, beating me to the chase. The woman looks surprised and smiles back.

“Hello.”

“What’s a pretty bird like you, doing here?” He asks with a cheeky smile. I roll my eyes and try not to laugh. He was good, but he was using kid’s material. The lady giggles at this.

“Well I work like other adults do and I’m tired so I decided having a drink was the best thing.” She says and I take this as the time to butt in.

“That’s how kids are these days.” I said with a hint of laughter in my voice. Harry raises an eyebrow at me. “What will it, girlie?”

“I’m not sure; it’s been a long day.” She comments with a sigh.

“Vodka on the rocks is always a classic.” Harry suggests, trying again. The lady smiles, clearly flattered by his attention.

“It is, but I was thinking of something with a twist. Something stronger.” She says and I smirk.

“How about I make something special just for you?” I take out a glass and add ice cubes to it before taking out the mixer. “I don’t usually do this, but I guess for a beautiful hardworking woman like you, it’d be okay.”

She blushes at my comment and I send a triumph glance at Harry. I pour the clear drink into the glass and slowly slide it towards her, a seductive smile on my face.

“For you, princess.”

Harry is trying very hard not to laugh but I could see his single dimple showing up on his cheek. The lady then pulls out a 20 dollar bill and drops it into my tip jar with a smile before heading off into the crowd. When she’s out of sight Harry bursts into laughter.

“Okay, I admit defeat!” He says in between laughs. “But you’re sneaky, calling me out as a child.”

I shrug and pour myself a drink. “I do what I have to do to win. You’re good, I’ll admit, but your techniques are a little childish.”

Now it was Harry’s turn to shrug. “Sometimes the childish techniques work. Take Selene for example, she’s still young but reaching her 30’s and feels the need to be younger. So by using my childish techniques, I’ve charmed her.”

“Uh…” I say, staring behind Harry who smirks at me.

“Speechless, right? I have that effect on women.”

But that’s not exactly why I was speechless.

“You’re such an arse!” I was speechless because Selene was behind him when he explained his technique to me, she looked embarrassed and angry. “To think I came back to give you my number!”

Then she poured her drink over his head and stormed out of the pub. Harry looks shocked as I slap a hand to my mouth, holding back my laughter.

“You can laugh if you want.” Harry says, shaking his wet hair. Well, since you gave me permission. I laugh loudly and hold my stomach as I double over, laughing.

“Come on, I live upstairs, you can shower.” I said, motioning for my co-worker Bethany to take over my position.

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