I wrote a little bit yesterday

I wrote a little bit yesterday. Nothing sexy, but then, it’s just the start of the story.

Friday found Robert at the aquatic center again, as usual, though this time there’d been someone in lane five so he’d had to use lane six. It wasn’t as if five was his personal lane, but something just felt different about using another one. Plus, he was still a little frustrated by the results of the date: it had gone well, he’d thought, but after some stilted communication on Thursday, today around lunch she’d said she didn’t think it was going to work out between them.

It bothered Robert that he felt any frustration at all; either person in that situation had the right to end the communication, and at least she’d gone out with him that one time. But his mother, always on the lookout for someone to replace Robert’s ex-wife, had tsked at him on Thursday evening when they’d talked. “You shouldn’t have to be alone,” she’d said. “Maybe you need to get out, meet people for real, instead of on those apps.”

“Mom, it’s not like I don’t try.” That wasn’t exactly true; for all of the help Robert gave his patients in dealing with their overbearing parents, he himself was more likely to sugarcoat the truth when talking to his mother. He knew exactly what he was doing, and why, but it was easier than getting into arguments with her. “I’ll meet someone when I meet someone.”

“I just don’t want you to be all by yourself.”

“I know, Mom. But I have Siobhan, at least.”

His mother did not consider his cat to be a suitable companion, and told him so in no uncertain terms.

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