“How about we see a movie?”

She sees him across the foyer in the movie theater, through the crowds of people lining up to buy over-priced candy and drinks so large you could fit small dogs in them.  He was close, she knew that from his text, but when the door flung open in a majestic way and the light shone around his silhouette her face smiled and she knew it was him.  There was no definitive feature or tell but she could feel it.

The sun was shining warm rays into the cool building that seemed to have its air conditioning always set to ‘meat locker.’  The angelic silhouette stood for a moment and she smiled at the silliness in her head, that he might be the angel Gabriel coming to tell her, “do not be afraid, Kinzi, you have found favor with Popcorn,” so she might enjoy a kernel or two.

Quickly shaking her head and laughing to herself as he moved through the door she went over to meet him.  Her fingers slipped smoothly through his and gave him a greeting like squeeze.  The kind of squeeze you give someone when you’ve missed them no matter the time frame that’s passed.  A tug followed, along with a head nod in the direction of the ever-growing line to the concession stand before leaning back and whispering in his ear.

“Thank the gods you’re here.  All of them.  Even the discount gods that aren’t quite as powerful and only exist because the Romans have no imagination.”

He looked at her with a quirked brow, “oh?”

She nodded emphatically, “yes!  These people!”

Her eyes scanned the drones as they line up in front of them.  She pulled him down so she could whisper secretively in his ear.

“I’m pretty sure this theater is a front for some sort of cult that somehow involves the consumption of popcorn.  I have a feeling that before entry to the screen room we’ll have to don our robes and mine is at home in the closet.”

He whispered back while keeping gaze on the line forming in front of them, “you own a cult robe?”

She nodded earnestly.

“Why do you own a cult robe?”

She turned to look at him, “one never knows when one needs to infiltrate a cult, or you know…play naughty dress up with a very kinky individual that I realize I shouldn’t have brought up because you and I just recently met.”

Her head spun away from his and back towards the lines.  She shut her eyes tight and groaned to herself.  Quickly she decided to pull him into the line to hinder further conversation of the subject by being surrounded by other patrons and cult members.  Trying to distract from the awkward silence she started humming Swinging on a Star and felt his hand squeeze back against hers again.

“You’ll never believe what happened on the drive over,” he leaned in and said to her in a voice just above a whisper.

“Oh, please tell.  I love weird instances among the commonality of everyday life.”

“Well there was a car that was a few spaces in front of me.  There was this dog hanging out of it enjoying things that dogs do.  His head in the wind.  I believe, in dog, that is the equivalent of a child with bubbles.  It simply doesn’t get better than that.  Anyways, he must have seen some kind of rodent or a cat and the person driving must have not quite understood their dogs capabilities because before I could blink the dog had lunged from the window and was out in the street dashing through traffic.”

“Oh no!”  She interrupted, “it wasn’t hit was it?  Please don’t tell me a story where you watched a dog get hit by a car!”

He looked at her and laughed, “oh goodness no!  Someone would have to be quite the scoundrel to do such a thing.  What kind of people do you associate with that you would think that normal?”

She laughed and returned her gaze forward, “none.  You’re right.  Sorry, continue.”

“Well, the woman stops her car in traffic.  In the middle of the lane and gets out.”

He pauses and holds up a finger towards her as she turns, “she also did not get hit by a car.”

“So the woman is running through traffic, screaming at the dog.  Pointing at it and yelling for it to get back in the car.  The name of the dog is absolutely ridiculous making the whole scene even sillier.”

“What was the name?”

“Oh uh, she was apparently a fan of murder mystery books as the dogs name was Agatha.”

“Agatha!  Agatha!  She yelled.  One would have thought she were in prison running a tin cup against the bars of her cell.”

He paused and looked at her with a smug smirk on his face and then having it sour as another one of his obscure pop culture references have fallen flat.  He then sighed and laughed to himself.

“Anyways, she finally got the dog back in the car and peeled through a yellow light to leave the scene without further stares.  The entire time horns blaring, people yelling and red faced in anger.  It was quite the scene really.  Amusing all around.”

“And why didn’t you go help this woman?  She seemed to be struggling to regain her pup, you could have assisted?”

He was taken back by her question and not sure how to answer it.  His usual loquacious self was stunned silent and she cringed at asking the question and tried to slide the subject to something else.

“Which that story does remind me of a woman at work.  Today she was in a very exuberant mood.  She was showing everyone pictures of her cat.  We all looked at them and gave her her the usual lip service.”

He interrupted, “oh like when someone shows you a picture of their baby and you have to remark how its a lovely looking baby and doesn’t at all look like every other baby you’ve ever seen?”

She smirks and nods, “yes exactly like that.”

“Well, it’s even worse because this is her sixth cat!”

His eyebrows raised as he turned to her for confirmation of what he just heard.  She nodded and mouthed the number again silently.

“What kind of person, do you suppose, has a life that accommodates six cats?”  She asks while tilting her head up slightly to contemplate such an existence.

“Well,” he responds, “perhaps she’s preparing for the feline revolution and aligning herself with the cat-rophecy that the one true cat will give kindness to all friends of feline nature.  You know, after the lizard-people are defeated.”

Startled out of her contemplation from such a silly thought of his she gets a picture in her mind of Egyptian like cat overlords with staffs and nifty gold head wear and lets out a laugh way too loud for an enclosed area.  Her head thrown back and then nearly doubling over with a loud cackling sound following suit.  Finishing the episode off with her curling into his shoulder to finish her giggle fit off she peeks around at the odd stares from people around them.  She blushes and straightens her skirt trying to compose herself.

“But she’s a really nice lady,” nodding along with her words as if they are very true.  Because that’s what you’re supposed to do after mocking or venting about a typically nice but obscure person.

“I don’t want you to think I dislike her or anything.  Just that she’s a bit odd,” she says with a short nod of the head.

“You’re a bit odd,” he nudges her and smiles.

She nudges back and mutters, “quiet you.”

After a few moments of silence the ocean parts and Moses, the young man behind the counter, grants them passage to choose their snacks.

Kinzi’s eyes glance up at the board showing her options as she mutters the familiar, “uuuuuuh,” that most people respond with when they are asked what they would like.

Her eyes dart across the screens flashing the selection.  Maybe, she thinks, there will be something new up there that wasn’t available the last hundred times she’s been to a movie.  Or at least maybe there will be something that at least grabs her and screams, “pick me” more so than when she was a few yards back in line.

“I’ll have some raisinets, a bottle of water a-and,” she turns her gaze to Ben and he looks back at her, somewhat startled that it’s his turn as he also was unprepared.

“Oh god um, I’ll have,” he looks down at her and sees her small bounty that is supposed to keep her hands occupied for an hour and forty seven minutes.

“Well, that’s not going to do it for me.  I’ll have some Butterfingers, a large coke and-” he looks at her, eyes narrowing at his excessive selections and continuance of snack hording.

“And that’s it.  Nothing else,” he smiles and leans over to kiss her furrowed brow.

“I’m taking a Butterfinger,” Kinzi says haphazardly as she walks away from the counter when finished paying, “and tonight I’m making dinner.  No more fast food on the drive home.  Not only is it absolutely terrible but you should really see yourself hunched over the wheel in traffic shoving food down in your face.  It’s quite unattractive.”

“Two things,” he says, “firstly, so that means we’re taking this back to your place after the movie?  Is that considered another date or a continuation of the current date?  Secondly, you want me to look attractive to other people while driving?  I’d think you’d want to discourage it considering you’re asking me back to your place after the movie.”

She narrowed her eyes at him again, “you’re quite the poop you know that?”

“Poop?!” he said in mock offense with a side of laughter.

She nodded vehemently, “yes!  A poop!  Now lets get our seats before we’re forced to sit on the opposite side of the theater from each other.  But if you keep it up that might just be what happens.”

“Or, you know, we could walk in and there would only be one seat left.  You could always sit in my lap.  I promise, no funny business.”

They slip into the line and do the slow march as they shuffle into the darkness of the theater tunnel.

“Oh, believe me poop, there will be no funny business.”

Laughing still, “is that my name now?  Is that what you’re calling me?  Is that a rest of the day thing or will it-,” he pauses and bites his lip while saying through a squeaky voice trying to hold back laughter, “stick?”

“You think your so clever, don’t you?” she glares at him.  He merely nods confidently.

“Well, poop, there will be no funny business.  I’ve extracted my funny bone and left it with Moses.  All seriousness in here with,” she taps the movie poster as they walk by it, “Kevin Hart and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.”

“Well, they are quite known for their serious acting,” he nods along with her.

“However, my sweet potpourri, if you’re going to sit in my lap and there is no funny business I’m not going to have any ability to move my hands for fear of being accused.”

“And?” she listens as the stand in back of the theater looking for a good seat to squeeze into.

“Well, you’re going to have to feed me my Butterfingers I’m afraid.  They are fun size so it’s safe to assume you’ll enjoy doing it.”

“Mmhmm,” is all she responds.

“And, if you’re not too troubled by it, you could assist me with my drink as well.  I could have asked for one of those long crazy straws but I didn’t know there would be a moratorium on funny business.”

He leans down towards her and points, “look, there…a single seat left in that row.  Right in the middle of a bunch of people too so we’ll get to squeeze by and make new friends.”

She tries to keep her composure, scrunching her lips up just slightly as she looks at the nearly half-empty theater and then turns her head to look up at him with his smile shining through the darkness down at her.

“Poop!”  She then wanders down the stadium seating to a row with no people in it and throws her legs up sideways onto the seats next to her.  He follows closely behind her, thinking he should probably lay off the teasing for the remainder of the evening at least.

Standing in front of her holding his box of candy and his drink he looks down at her as she’s sprawled out on the seats.  The arm rests all pulled up and her looking very comfortable.

“Hello Miss.  Let me introduce myself, I’m Poop.  Or Mr Poop if you’d prefer.  I was wondering if I could join you.”

She nodded and bent her knees, pulling them up so he could sit.  He pulled down an arm rest on each side of him, but as soon as he did she flicked the one between them back up with her foot and stretched her legs onto his lap and stared at him while trying to hide a smirk.

He smiled and pulled her legs into his lap and rubbed his hands over her skin just in time for the lights to lower, the pre-movie advertisements on the screen to fade away and the secondary advertisements to begin.  The rattle of the packages being ripped open began and he popped a little chocolate rectangle into his mouth and dove his hand in for another.  Holding a second rectangle to her lips she smiled and let it slip past them and enjoyed it.

She tried to enjoy the movie but she kept stealing glances of him.  The way the screen reflected off his face.  He caught her staring at him a few times and smiled then pointed at the screen.  She nodded and motioned himself to stop looking at her like it was him doing the peeking initially.

After a good 30 minutes she pulled her legs from his lap and leaned her body against his shoulder.  His arm wrapped around her and pulled her in tight while resting the side of his head against the top of hers.  The movie took them away from there and they sat for an hour or so more tangling fingers together and playing footsie all the way through the credits.

 

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