Candy yawned every so often quietly behind her hand, but then would lean in and stroke Merv’s thigh in an affectionate manner. Issy realised that a charming waiter was refilling her glass every time she took so much as a sip of the ambrosial white wine, so she kept at it. Since neither Vanya nor Candy ate at all, Issy went at the bread basket in an almost passive-aggressive manner. Meanwhile Austin was talking about Europe and money and futures and micro-trading and other things Issy hadn’t even heard of in a way that was completely beyond her and very impressive.
She laughed, and a soft smile settled over her thoughtful expression.Now that Caleb was back in town, I was fully expecting my confident best friend to disappear into the insecure girl she became whenever Caleb was near. It was always an oddity growing up and watching how quickly her sharp tongue could get tied up, leaving her either stuttering or frozen when Caleb would so much as look at her. We walked in silence for a few moments before I grew restless at her sudden lack of conversation. I hadn’t seen Caleb since he moved away a few years earlier, but there was plenty of talk around town about his sudden return.
I heard the restaurant will be opening next week. Caleb sent an invite for a grand opening party.I still can’t believe he bought the old place. Hilary took a drink from her water bottle. That place is a dump. My grandparents wouldn’t even eat there the last couple of years.I shrugged. I’m actually excited to see what he has planned. The building looks amazing, and I heard he renovated the inside and added a bar.
From what I’d been hearing, Caleb was turning it into a full-blown restaurant with an expansive bar and even had a dance floor built. The forty-minute commute to the city every time we wanted to go out would be no more. I was thrilled, I hated the long drive just to have drunk guys spill their drinks on me and throw out cheesy pick-up lines. I went out to dance and even that would always seem to get ruined. They never seem to take the hint, sometimes a girl wants to dance alone. It was as though they assumed if you don’t come with another guy then your begging to be picked up. Not the case, at least not for me.Hilary continued walking, her expression indifferent. How was she not excited? She was the one that had to plead with me to go out with her all the time.
I jumped in front of her. Come on! She stepped back pursing her lips to hide a smile. A real bar! I shouted.
She shook her head at my antics and walked around me.I’d been expecting a quiet Saturday night out at the bar, but it was fast turning into chaos.
I waited with bated breath, the sound of my own heartbeat pounding in my ears, the anticipation in the air so dense I could cut it with a knife. I couldn’t see the stage from where I was sitting because the audience was near shoulder-to-shoulder packed, but from the eerie—almost reverent—silence that passed over the crowd, I knew the band had taken the stage and were about to play.The bassline echoed off the walls, resonating with the crowd’s thrumming energy, its infectious rhythm building in a slow crescendo, raising the excitement in the bar higher and higher.
The explosive sound of drums broke through the bassline and people began shouting and pumping their fists in the air to the beat like an angry mob. I looked to Jen for her reaction and saw her eyes wide and mouth in the shape of an ‘O’.I wanted to see the band badly. I’d been to enough rock concerts to know that half the performance was the music and the other half was in the way the band worked the stage. They must’ve been a local act because I didn’t know what they looked like and hadn’t seen them perform before.