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Ice Cream


by Tim Young


Amy's red hair curled like a corkscrew down her back. She squinted from the

sunshine and sat in the middle of a park bench. Bicycles and runners made their

way past her on the cinder path. It was three o'clock. She was waiting for her

friend Thomas. They often met at this time for an ice cream and conversation

on this particular bench. Amy was thinking about a vanilla ice cream with

caramel

swirls; her mouth grew moist. Amy heard the gravel slip and slide and there

was

Thomas in his forest green running shorts, buzz cut and AC/DC t-shirt.

"Great jog today," he said,  "but the entire length of the run I'm thinking about

 ice

cream and how good that is going to feel."

Amy stood up. She enjoyed watching the perspiration run down Thomas's face

 as

 he began to cool off. "Are you having the usual chocolate today?"

"Yep. A double dip if you don't mind."

"Double dip it is."


Thomas watched the fine way the muscles in Amy's legs collaborated to move

her over to the ice cream vendor. He had met Amy on a day quite like this one,

after a run, as he stretched out the muscles in his legs. Amy had been running

that

day too. She was just letting her hair down revealing all those gorgeous

twisting

curls and happened to turn her head to see Thomas in mid stretch. "Nice legs,"

she said. "Hair like a goddess," he said, and the next thing they knew they were

 on the bench together discussing how wonderful it was to have the run be over

 and

 the relaxation time begin.


 She returned with the frozen confections. She passed the double dip

chocolate to Thomas and held on to her single cup of strawberry. "I am so

disappointed, " she said, "No vanilla with caramel swirls. I was forced to

choose

this vastly inferior strawberry. I'll probably never have satisfaction again in my

life. And the creepy ice cream man tried to take me for an extra buck. I feel like

going over there and pushing this strawberry cup right into his chubby little

nose."

Thomas laughed and looked up to see a flash of lightning followed immediately

by a terrific crack of thunder; the storm had rushed in unannounced. The pink

 ice cream was running down Amy's fingers and hand. As the rain

drops began their descent she tossed the cup onto the gravel and started to

dance around it as if she were doing a native American rain dance. By the

 time she had once circled the cup the rain was thick and stinging. Thomas

said, "What do we do now?" Amy laughed and continued her dance. Inspired,

Thomas threw his remaining  chocolate into the now quite thin strawberry

mess and decided to join Amy in her dance. They joined arms and began to

chant in what sounded like a native American tongue. The park was now

deserted, even the creepy ice cream man had run off leaving his cart behind.

The rain continued. The dance now complete, Amy and Thomas went back

to the bench and let the rain soak them to the bone. Amy's tight red curls

now long and straight.



When the rain stopped Amy heard a bird sing. She slid a finger through those

long red tresses and turned to Thomas who was nowhere in sight. She smiled

and thought about the ice cream dance and how the rain had washed everything

away.











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