I’m participating in Rachael Harrie’s Platform-Building Challenge, and this week we were given an assignment: write a 200-word story beginning with “The door swung open” and ending with “The door swung shut.” Extra points for hitting exactly 200 words! I don’t usually write anything this short, but here’s my contribution:
The door swung open. A waiter, tall and trim in black slacks and matching vest, balanced a tray of food on his fingertips and glided into the dining room. His hair was more salt than pepper, though he still had plenty of it.
As he moved toward the table of six, he stopped suddenly, still holding the tray aloft over his head, and stared at the couple who had just sat down. The woman glanced up, and their eyes locked.
In an instant, he recovered and delivered the food to his table. Then he walked over to the couple. The man, absorbed in the menu, didn’t look up right away. When he did, he said, “Well, James, I didn’t expect to see you here.”
“Times are hard, boss,” James said bitterly. “This is what happens to your laid-off employees.”
The boss handed James the menu. “I’ll have the steak,” he said. “Medium rare. Make sure you get it just right.”
James replied, “Of course, boss.” To the boss’s wife he added, winking, “And you’ll get a special dessert, madame.” Ignoring her reddening face, he went back to the kitchen with a small smile on his face. The door swung shut.