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“It’s like a riddle, you see.”

I paused in my reading to stare at him. One way or another he was going to understand the act was getting old.

“Now, now, we can’t have that when we have work to do.”

My subtle stare turned to more of a glare with a simple narrowing of the eyes. “Why can’t you be normal?” He knew he was getting under my skin. It was why he started talking in a deeper, slower manner.

Thankfully neither one of us cared about our reputation. Sitting in a bookstore cafe with a guy who could easily be pegged as Irish but was going on mimicking his version of Holmes drew a certain level of attention. I swear he got louder when people looked over. The most I could do was kick him.

“Stephanie Walters!” He groaned my name as if it was a curse.

Job done, I smirked triumphantly and went back to reading about the fabulous life of bacteria.

“You kick like a horse.”

“Mere leg exercises. Didn’t know you were so close. Oops, sorry J.”

A quick glance up was all it took to get me laughing behind my textbook. Not only was he grumbling sans accent but he was rubbing at his leg vigorously while giving me a face of five year old who was told no. It was part sulk, part pout, and part glare. Together he looked nowhere close to nineteen.

“Look,” I started, setting my book in my lap, “how about you go find us a movie to watch later and I’ll try and think of a way to make up for kicking you?”

J turned around in his seat to harass the table about my nerve to think I could make up for it before finally getting up without so much as a word to me. I did see the smile though. That meant I has ten minutes to finish reading and come up with a way out of making anything up to him. There was no way I was giving in when he called me a horse. But he didn’t know that.

Thinking on it, a round of riddles sounded like an appropriate start to payback. He’d never see it coming.

—————-

M.J. inspired me. That and my other prompt source ran out. I will be talking about this challenge January 7th so keep an eye out for that post. It will touch on the details. A special thanks to tehuti for providing the 100 Writing Prompts I will be using.

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