Life Goes On – by Lorraine Florence Ellis (Flo)
The jokes were lewd, the laughter raucous, cigarette smoke hung in smoggy tendrils. Jack stared into his pint glass, his shoulders were hunched his breathing laboured.
He glanced around the crowded pub which had been his local for as long as he could remember.
He had seen many changes over the years, heard the voices of various publicans calling out last orders; and he’d watched countless barmaids pulling him his thick black stout. And then there was Candy the ‘lady’ of the night.
The first to go had been the piano which had been replaced by the jukebox.
The days of the pinball machines were also long gone, the pool table now taking pride of place in the middle of the tap room.
The girls giggle and simper in the corner and watch as the men nonchalantly balance the cue across the green felt.
Yes he had seen it all but they had always been by his side.
He recalled the first one, Bella how he had loved her and he remembered all too well the tragic road accident; so young, so young to die.
And then there was Susie, his sweet little Susie. He had felt a twinge of guilt at first, and yet he knew that Bella would’ never have wanted him to be unhappy.
Lastly there was Jenny. He had always thought that he would end his days with Jenny but sadly this was not to be. “Life goes on,” or so they keep telling him. But had the grieving period been long enough…
However he knew he wasn’t getting any younger, knew he didn’t have a lot of time left.
So why shouldn’t he? why shouldn’t he let the young lass by his side make his last few years a little more pleasurable.
He walked over to the bar. “Yes it’s a deal I’ll have her,” he said to the man in the corner.
“Well as long as she isn’t too much for you mate she’s a frisky young thing.”
“I’ll manage,” grinned the old man bending down and filling up the clean ashtray with stout for the puppy by his side.
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