Benevolent

By: Leddy Harper
The bar I was sitting in was loud and obnoxious. There was some game on, but I wasn’t paying it any attention. I had such an aggravating day that all I wanted to do was sit alone and drink. I needed to pass a few hours before I went home. That was what I was dreading the most—home. It was no longer a pleasant place to be. But I knew I couldn’t avoid it forever. I was only asking for a few hours.

I didn’t want to be hit on either, but that didn’t keep the women from stopping and making lame comments about me sitting alone. Because, yeah, pointing out the obvious was a sure way for them to gain a seat next to me. Being hit on wasn’t something new to me. I was a fairly attractive man, in my opinion, and in the opinion of most females. I was tall and worked out almost religiously. I had blond hair, with neatly trimmed facial hair and blue eyes. I had been told on more than one occasion that my eyes looked like the sky. Like I cared what my eyes looked like. But nonetheless, I didn’t want to be hit on. I wanted to be left alone with my beer.

I hated the idiots that sat down at a table and did nothing but mess with their phones, so I made sure to leave mine in the car. What a stupid thing to do. Sitting by myself with nothing to do made me realize why those idiots were glued to their devices. It kept them from looking even more like an idiot, sitting in a sports bar, not watching the game, not hitting on chicks, and just not doing anything. All I had left to do was people watch. So, I watched people.

There was a young woman sitting alone at a high-top table about fifteen feet from me. She caught my eye. Her hair was dark red at the roots and turned brighter red about halfway down to the ends. I’d seen that type of style on women before and just thought it looked like a really bad dye job. But I hadn’t ever seen anything that looked like hers before. I actually liked it. That was probably what had grabbed my attention first. I hated hair, unless I was grabbing onto it and pulling. Other than that, hair was just hair. But not hers. Hers, I wanted to smell, feel, and of course, pull. But I knew I could never do that.

The other thing about her that caught my eye was the brightly colored ink on her left arm. I was a sucker for chicks with tattoos, but as I looked at hers, I thought they had the ability to make me their bitch.

I checked my pitcher of beer, sure I hadn’t had that much to warrant such thoughts. Half gone. Certainly not enough for me to have gone all desperate for some random girl with a few flowers on her skin.

Just as I looked back up from my table, I saw a guy sit down in front of her. I couldn’t see his face, only the back of his head, so I watched her instead. She didn’t look pleased to have him there. In fact, she looked rather irritated. Her beautiful face scrunched up as he talked.

I decided to give the creeper exactly one minute before I played the role of her hero for the night. I checked my watch every five seconds, waiting until sixty was up. Fuck it. The tool only got thirty. I was out of my seat and standing next to him, but I didn’t look at him. I couldn’t take my eyes off hers as she looked back at me in surprise.

“Can I help you, bro?” he asked.

I finally looked at him. He didn’t stand a chance. “Actually, bro, you can. You can help me by leaving my girl alone.”

He glanced over to the girl in question, but I didn’t stop staring at him. I wanted him to feel the burning holes in the side of his face from my glare. I couldn’t tell what she was doing, but he looked back to me. That time, he looked extremely apologetic. I guess he knew what was good for him.

“Sorry,” he muttered as he excused himself from the stool he was sitting on.

I didn’t even wait until he was away from the table before I sat down, right where he was. I looked at her and smiled. I had to play the part while he was still there. But he hadn’t waited around and yet I couldn’t seem to wipe that ridiculous smile off my face. It only got more ridiculous once she smiled back at me.

“Let me know when he’s gone and I’ll go back to my table,” I told her. I couldn’t see where he went and didn’t want to look around for him.

“Why don’t you just stay here?” Her voice was so soft it felt like it slipped right over me and blanketed my body like satin sheets. I wanted to roll around in it. Or, just roll around in actual satin sheets with her while she spoke… or screamed. Didn’t matter much to me.

Damn it. I needed to get away from her. I already had enough problems at home without adding any more.

“Well, my pitcher is over there and I will be needing more very shortly,” I said, raising my nearly empty glass as proof.

“So, bring your pitcher over here. I’m sure it won’t be that difficult. You never know, he could come back and see you sitting at a different table from your girl. That wouldn’t look so good, now would it?” She was flirting with me. I could tell. I was rather used to girls flirting with me. What I wasn’t used to was not getting annoyed with it. I was screwed.

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