Note: Yes! It is time again for NaNoWriMo. I decided to do it again this year. Instead of one huge story, I'm writing short stories. Fun, eh? I thought so too. And, before you ask, I have edited this! If by editing you mean copious amounts of word padding, of course. :]
"What do you mean you've never been to the pumpkin farm?" He asked, looking at me like I had two heads. I shrugged.
"That's what I mean. I've never been." I replied, picking up the Butterfinger from off the coffee table in front of me. Sitting down on the couch, I continued to look at him. He seemed to be contemplating the very existence of life, hunched over in the awful maroon and steel blue striped arm chair he'd gotten at a yard sale.
"I get that you've never been. What I meant was, 'How could you have never been?' Going to a pumpkin farm is a vital experience for every child! It's like…a stepping stone! A milestone in any child's life!" He replied, watching as I unwrapped the candy. He hated that I ate so much junk. He always said it was awful for my teeth and my waif-like figure. I ignored that thought as I took a bite into the chocolate.
"My family wasn't well off, Michael." I said between chewing. "It's not like we had the option to go running through fields of pumpkins and play hide and seek for hours on end in the corn field."
Michael didn't reply. His family had money. A lot of it, to say the least. Michael, of course, had decided he wasn't ready for it. Not ready for neither the power that it brought, nor the responsibility. He and his parents had put the money into the bank, giving Michael the option to withdraw when he was ready. When that would be, I didn't know.
Michael sat back in the chair and picked up his right leg, crossing it over his left. He ran his fingers through his dirty blond hair. I took another bite of the Butterfinger, crinkling the wrapper in my hand. The fun size, while great to pass out on Halloween, were not that fun to eat if you were past the age of seven. Michael cleared his throat and shifted slightly in his chair. It was clear he was thinking. I was almost afraid to know what.
I thought about dropping the wrapper onto the spotless linoleum floor, just to see what he would do. Deciding against it, I stood up and walked through the tiny living room to the equally as tiny kitchen. The furniture wasn't the only hideous thing in this apartment. Everything looked like it had originally been designed by a drunken interior designer who believed that puke green and burnt orange were the best colors ever. I opened the cabinet under the sink and dropped the wrapper into the white garbage bin. Closing the cabinet, I headed back into the living room and took my place back on the red and yellow couch polka dot. It was as almost as hideous as the chair that Michael was sitting in. This gem had come from a thrift store that was going out of business. If the thrift store actually thought people would buy these couches, I could see why they went under.
"I've given this a lot of thought. You can't go the rest of your life without visiting a pumpkin farm. That's just a sin." Michael began, pausing slightly. "So, I'll take you for your first ever visit to the pumpkin farm."
I blinked. "Michael. We're twenty three years old. Don't you think we're a bit old to visit?"
Michael gasped theatrically. "I visit every year! Never miss it!"
"So that's why we always have three pumpkins. And here I thought the pumpkin fairy came and delivered them." I replied dryly, pausing for sarcastic affect. "Oh wait. I see him right in front of me.
Michael ignored me. Though, if Michael had time to visit the pumpkin farm, that meant he had time to work on getting his deadline met so his boss wouldn't fire him. Rather than make a comment on that, I leaned over the side of the couch and grabbed another Butterfinger from off the table. I ripped open the wrapper and took the chocolate out. Depositing the wrapper on the table, I popped the candy into my mouth and began to crunch on it. I wondered what annoyed Michael more; the fact that I was eating more candy, or that I didn't get up and throw the wrapper way.
"You know, that candy is for the trick or treaters." Michael said, eyeing the wrapper wearily. I shrugged, not particularly caring. Michael must have realized that. "You can buy another bag when we go to the pumpkin farm."
"I never said yes!" I replied, swallowing the chewed up candy. Michael just mirrored my apathetic shrug. Bastard. "I probably have to work whenever you decide to go."
"I'm sure Linda will understand that her little star writer needs to visit the pumpkin farm for some inspiration, Chris." Michael said, referring to my editor. I groaned. Of course Linda would think it was a fabulous idea. A children's story book writer visiting the pumpkin farm, a place where children went? Brilliant, she'd think! Too bad I wasn't on the same wavelength.
"But. But. I'm at a crucial point with Melissa! She doesn't have time to go and play with pumpkins!" I protested, referring to the character of my series, 'The Rabbits of CarrotVille.'
"I'm sure she can find time between showing Tommy how to fish and beating Kyle in yet another race." Michael mused. "We're going. You can't weasel your way out of it."
I frowned, glancing at Michael. He was grinning, knowing he'd won. I sighed, wondering what I'd truly gotten myself into. "When are we going?" I asked, dreading the answer.
"Tomorrow. Early. It's a two hour drive from here. I'm sure there are closer ones, but I like Robertson's. I've been going there since I was born." Michael said, studying his nails. "You'll love it there. Very friendly."
"Yeah, but two hours away?" I whined. I hated being in the car for prolonged periods of time. Especially if it was in Michael's Bug. That car left no room for people who were taller than five inches.
"We'll take your car." Michael said, not looking up. It was as if he'd read my mind. I was about to let out a sigh of relief, until I remembered. My car was in the shop.
"We can't. Remember? The breaks are shot, as is the fuel injector. It's being worked on."
"We'll take Baby then. She loves the open road."
"But that means my legs will get cramped!"
"Oh stop whining, Chris! This is exciting, and you know it. You're just trying to be a downer for no reason. Take a lesson from Melissa. She'd be jumping up and down with excitement."
"She's a rabbit. She's always jumping." I pointed out.
Michael picked up one of the decorated pillows from off the floor and threw it at me. I caught it, used to his childish antics. Michael just laughed. I placed the pillow on top of the couch, ignoring the clash between the two fabrics. Snowman needle point was never a good idea to put on a pillow, no matter what time of year it was.
"Come on, Chris. Lighten up. It's just a pumpkin farm. It's not like I'm taking you to New York to visit my family." Memories of last Christmas danced through my mind. How was I supposed to know that his grandma didn't think that writing children's books was actually a career? And, it wasn't like he warned me that his father still didn't approve of him being gay.
I groaned. "Fine, fine. You win. I'll go. Willingly even."
Michael smiled. He got up from the arm chair and walked into the kitchen. "You'll love it. I promise." He came out of the kitchen a few moments later, an apple in hand.
"Yeah? That's what you said about living together." I replied, picking up another Butterfinger.
The next morning, Michael was shaking me awake. I let out a loud groan and curled up with the pillow that had found its way into my arms during the night.
"Wake up. I've made breakfast." Michael cooed into my ear. I didn't budge. Though I didn't know what time it was, my body knew it was before the crack of dawn, also known as noon. The only time I got up before noon was if my mother wanted to come and visit. She seemed to think that everyone was always up and ready by seven in the morning, just like her.
"Unless you've made bacon, real eggs, hash browns, and a bagel with far too much cream cheese, I'm going back to sleep and not waking up until one." I mumbled, scrunching my eyes shut.
"I did. And if you don't hurry up, Little Shit is going to eat it before you." Michael said, referring to our cat, who was currently curled up between my legs. I sniffed the air, trying to determine if he was lying. My sense of smell, due to just waking up, was off.
"The cat hasn't moved. I think you're lying just to get me out of bed." I replied, not moving. Michael sat on the edge of the bed, moving his right arm to pet Little Shit. The cat began to purr almost instantly. Such a suck up.
"I'm not. I've made eggs, bacon, hash browns, and a bagel. I even made those little sausage links you love so much." Michael said. My eyes slid open. I glanced at Michael from the corner of my left eye. His attention was directed towards the cat that was now in his lap. I stretched out slowly, listening as my joints cracked. My legs drifted towards the floor, the threadbare carpet barely cushioning. I pulled the blanket off of my body and stood up, letting out a loud yawn that neither Michael or Little Shit noticed. I could drop dead in my spot right this very moment, and neither the cat nor Michael would pay any attention.
"It better be there. Otherwise, I'm putting rat poison in your dinner." I grumbled, heading towards the door.
"Mmm. Maybe it'll add some flavor to your bland cooking." Michael teased, getting off the bed and following after me. Little Shit meowed loudly. She thought she was more important than food. As if.
"I didn't say I'd cook it. I'll just add it in when you're not looking. You get distracted often enough. It's as easy as cake." I replied, walking into the kitchen. On the counter next to the refrigerator sat a plate with eggs, hash browns, bacon, and sausage. Next to it sat a plate with a bagel lathered in cream cheese. In front of the two plates stood a tall glass of milk. I looked at the set up skeptically.
"What's wrong? Isn't that what you wanted?" Michael asked.
"I'm betting that those aren't real eggs, the hash browns are from a box, the meat is tofu, and the cream cheese is soy, as is the milk. Oh. And the bagel is whole wheat instead of white." I said, turning to look at Michael. He just smiled.
"Go over there and taste it. The longer you wait, the colder it gets." Michael replied. I went over to the sink and grabbed a clean fork and knife from the silverware caddy. I then grabbed a dishrag from off the counter adjacent to the sink. Michael didn't like paper towels, as he thought they killed the environment. Dishrags could not only be used again, but they could be washed as well. Or so Michael said as he lectured me on the evils of consumerism and the decline of the environment. It was cute how he thought that I listened.
Walking over to the counter with my food sitting on top of it, I noticed that only my food was there. I looked around curiously to see if Michael had food as well.
"Aren't you going to eat?" I asked. Michael shook his head.
"I already ate breakfast while you were asleep. I didn't wait for you because I knew you would give me such a hard time about getting up, and I wanted to leave as soon as possible." He paused. "Besides. You'd make faces at me the whole time if you had to see what I was eating."
I nodded, placing the knife and the rag onto the counter. I then dipped my fork into the eggs. They were still a bit hot; the steam rose up off them and hit my nose. They smelled real as well, which the special eggs never did. I brought the fork up to my mouth and took a bite. They tasted amazing; covered in margarine as all real scrambled eggs should. The fluffy texture released flavor and steam into my mouth as I chewed slowly, savoring the bite.
Still not convinced, I picked up a piece of the bacon. This for sure had to be tofu. I took a bite and chewed thoughtfully. It tasted like actual bacon. Smoky and greased to perfection, the piece was cooked just right—it wasn't too raw, and it wasn't too crunchy. I put the rest of the piece down and grabbed the top part of the bagel, taking a bite as soon as it reached my mouth. That too was made with real cream cheese, and not the soy stuff that Michael always forced me to eat. The bagel was toasted lightly, just like I liked it.
"You made real food. Here. Why?" I asked, swallowing the bite of bagel. I picked up the glass of milk and took a gulp. It was whole milk, still pretty much ice cold.
"Actually, Mrs. Lewinsky in 4A made breakfast. She, as usual, made too much and brought the food over. I accepted it so you would be more willing to go to the pumpkin farm." Michael replied, scratching his nose.
I placed the glass of milk down, smiling. So he did care about my feelings in regards to the pumpkin farm. Not that he'd change his mind about going.
Thirty minutes and a cold shower later, we were in the car, ready to head for the highway. Though Michael swore he knew where he was going, he printed out directions from Mapquest, 'just in case.' He shoved the papers into my hands and ran to the driver's side of the car, almost breaking into a skip.
I looked at the map for the third time that morning, the tiny print swarming before my eyes. I'd forgotten to put my contacts in. Not that I had time for that, seeing as Michael spent the time I got ready yelling, "Waiting! Waiting! Waiting! Christmas is going to be here before you get out of the shower! I'm not getting any younger over here! Come on! All the good pumpkins are already going to be carved before we even make it out the door!"
I pushed the moment out of my head and watched as Michael pulled onto the highway. Though he'd never admit it, he loved highway driving as much as I loved junk food. It was there he could get his thrills of fast driving out into the vast expanse.
"What if you take a wrong turn? I do have to get some writing done today." I said. The car was unusually silent. Michael had mentioned that his radio was broken before we'd left the apartment, but I hadn't realized that he had yet to get it fixed. Without the radio, I became antsy. Prolonged periods of silence gave me headaches. Maybe it had to do with me being a writer. That, or I had ADHD and was never diagnosed for it.
"That's why I printed out directions. Besides. You know how to read a map. You know what south, north, east, and west is. We'll be fine." Michael said nonchalantly. He flipped the blinkers on and glanced back to see if he was clear. He then tapped the accelerator and pulled into the lane to the left of us.
"I know directions if they're on street signs." I said, studying the map more, wondering if street names were really that important. We still had at least twelve miles before we had to make any sort of turn.
"Where's your sense of adventure today, Chris? Usually you're the one dragging me on inane road trips." Michael said, taking his right hand off the steering wheel. He took my left hand into his right hand and laced our fingers together. He then rubbed his thumb softly on the back of my hand.
"I must have left it back home in bed, along with my patience." I replied, my eyes scanning the expanse of highway in front of us. It was relatively clear for a Wednesday morning, but that didn't mean that it wouldn't fill up with cars before long.
"Even though you don't want to go now, you'll be thanking me later. There's something about the pumpkin farm that's magical. It doesn't matter what age you are; it has a way of making you feel as though you're invincible. That every time you visit, you secretly are a year younger, rather than a year older." Michael embellished.
"If only you put that sort of effort into your novel, Michael. You'd actually have progress by now." I replied, regretting it as soon as the words left my mouth. He dropped my hand and placed it back on the steering wheel, his jaw locked. "I'm sorry. That wasn't fair."
"Damn right it wasn't." Michael sneered. "I give you bacon, sausage, and real dairy, and you repay me with bringing up 'The Beast.' Thanks."
Michael moved his left hand from the steering wheel and moved it down to where the window controls were on the door. He pushed the button down and the window came sliding down with a satisfactory screech-like noise. The cool air blew in violently, catching my red hair with a giggle. My stick straight bowl cut went flying everywhere.
"I didn't mean to." I yelled over the wind. Michael didn't respond. He was very sensitive about his novel, mostly because he was always busy having, 'writer's block' when it came time for a deadline. If it wasn't for the mild success of my children's books, we would be scrounging around in garbage cans for food, mostly because even at that point, Michael still wouldn't take the money his family left to him. Bringing up his novel made me feel bad, but sometimes getting him angry about it was the only way for him to actually touch it.
I glanced over at Michael, the wind whipping my hair into my face. I held on tight to the directions in my hand as they rattled in the wind. "Can you at least close the window? You're going to make me lose the directions."
"Oh well." Michael replied, keeping the window down. I hated when he got like this, even if it was my fault for putting him in the bad mood. He didn't have to retaliate by acting like a child. "Like you said. I should know where I'm going. Why would I need a paper with directions on it?"
"Michael." I replied. He kept his eyes on the road, but he brought his hand back down to the window button, pushing it upwards. The window gratefully slid closed, emitting the same screech-like sound it had made earlier. As soon as the window closed, I brought my right hand to my hair and smoothed it over consciously. I was grateful that all it took sometimes was for me to rationally say his name. However, I still had to apologize. "That was wrong of me to ruin your mood."
Michael nodded, putting his left hand on the steering wheel. He pushed the accelerator a bit, making the car go a bit faster. I looked out the window to see a Hummer with its left blinkers blinking. Michael rarely let people in front of him, especially if they drove what he referred to as 'gas guzzlers.' He firmly believed that they had no place on the road. The vehicles, that was. The people could still be on the road, as long as they were in a car that didn't kill the environment.
The person in the Hummer honked the horn, the noise making Michael jump. He pressed the accelerator more, passing up the Hummer with ease. He released the accelerator slowly, keeping up with the traffic in front of him. The person in the Hummer honked again; they were now driving behind Michael. They continued to lay on the horn. Michael gritted his teeth angrily. He flipped the blinkers on and glanced in the review mirror. I looked behind me, trying to see out of the back window. The person in the Hummer was holding up their right hand, middle finger outstretched. I bit back a comment about how mature that was.
Turning back around, I saw the person to the right of us slowing down a bit, letting Michael move ahead of them. Michael swiftly pulled the car into the middle lane. The person in the Hummer shot up, the windows of the vehicle rolling down as it pulled up next to Michael. For some reason, Michael pushed down the button to make his window roll down as well.
"Hey faggot! Thanks for letting me in! I really appreciate it." The person shouted.
"Maybe if you drove a car that didn't kill the environment, I'd let you in. Your loss, buddy." Michael shouted back. He then promptly pushed the button to let the windows roll back up.
"Go back to your fag…" The person began to shout. The rest of the sentence was cut off as the window closed tightly.
Michael didn't speak for the rest of the ride there. I stopped trying to speak as well, only bothering when I thought he might need directions. I instead looked out the window, watching the farm land overtake the cityscape.
I had only been to a farm once. I was five. My dad had taken me. One of his many bosses had a bit of money. The boss was a seemingly kind man. He told my dad that he could take me to the farm to visit and pick some apples, guessing that I would be one of the only kids in my kindergarten class that wasn't doing anything really festive for fall, other than going trick or treating on Halloween. My dad agreed to letting me go pick apples.
The farm wasn't what I'd expected in my five year old mind. There weren't any horses or cows or chickens or even pigs. It was instead rows beyond rows of trees. Apple trees. At every tree, there was a ladder with a person on it, picking apples. They were all wearing the same overalls and plaid shirts.
My dad hadn't said much as he watched. I had decided to run through the spaces, watching everyone as I ran. Coming up to the end of the row, I had bumped into my dad's boss. He looked down at me, a grin on his face.
"Someday, Chris." He'd begun. "You can come and pick apples for me. You're not Mexican, so I won't be able to get away with only paying you a few dollars, but I'm sure that you'll still be dirt poor when you're older. You'll need the money, and you'll be willing to work for whatever lousy pay I give you."
I had looked up at him, not really sure what he had meant. When I'd told my dad this later, he had become horribly angry. He quit that job the very next day.
I blinked the memory away as Michael pulled off the highway. According to the map in front of me, we still had about five more miles to go before we hit Robertson's. I glanced at him as he pulled up to a red light and stopped. He didn't say anything. The light turned green and Michael began to drive again, tapping the wheel with his thumbs.
We arrived at Robertson's about ten minutes later. Michael found a parking spot relatively easily and parked the car. As he turned the engine off, he turned to look at me.
"I may not like the fact that you're bringing up The Beast, but I know you only mean well. I should be working on it." He said softly. "You shouldn't have to apologize for bringing up the truth. I shouldn't be so childish in regards to the progress of it."
I studied him for a few moments. I didn't want to say the wrong thing. "We all have our moments, Michael. I only bring it up because I know you're talented. You should be working on your novel to get it published so other people can see that too." It wasn't necessarily a lie; that just hadn't been my motive at the time.
Michael nodded. He pulled the keys out of the ignition and slid the key ring around his thumb. "Let's just have a good time, okay? Let's not worry about work. We're at a pumpkin farm. Not an office building."
I smiled, glad that he wasn't in a bad mood anymore. We both turned and opened our doors, getting out of the tiny car as quickly as possible. As I stepped onto the dirt covered ground, I closed my door and stretched out; my joints cracked loudly and sequentially. I was glad that we were here, even just so I could stretch my body out. Michael closed his door and jammed the key into the lock, locking the car up. He then walked around the car to where I was standing. He stuck out his left hand and I grabbed it with my right. We were almost the same height—I was a bit shorter than he was--, and it didn't feel awkward.
Michael and I began walking towards the farm entrance. I took in my surroundings, finding that just being in the parking lot gave me a sense of happiness. In the distance stood what looked like a red barn. A gigantic wooden jack-o-lantern sat proudly on the roof, grinning at all passing cars. The orange paint had long since begun chipping, but one would have to be up close to really see how much chipping there really was.
Children and parents alike were milling around the barn, pushing shopping carts full of pumpkins. The actual entrance to the farm was an archway covered in dried corn husks with a gigantic 'Welcome!' sign displayed in the center. Michael let go of my hand and walked over to the cart corral, grabbing one. The shopping cart looked as though it was just a part of the ludicrous experience. He grabbed my hand again, lacing our fingers together and resting them upon the cool metal of the handle. We walked past the entrance, feeling the cool air bite at our exposed flesh.
I continued to look around, almost in awe. The smell of apples hung in the air, mixed with pumpkin and other fall spices. The smell of roasting corn and butter wafted past, clinging to the smell of fresh kettle corn. Bundles of hay decorated the exterior of the barn, which from up close, one could see that the barn was open so people could leave with their purchases. A few children were settled upon one bundle of hay as a group of parents crowded around, snapping pictures. Despite myself, I smiled.
We walked through yet another corn husk arch into the actual farm. My eyes danced as I tried to take everything in. Wooden crates of mini pumpkins, gourds, and even squash sat in the middle of the pavement. To the right of us were wooden cut outs of Sesame Street characters. Children posed around the cut outs to have their picture taken by their parents. To the left of us was an entrance to the barn, automatic sliding doors closed.
I let go of Michael's hand and ran over to where the mini pumpkins were. There were the normal orange ones I was used to, but then there were white ones I'd never really seen before. They were tinged with shocking shades of orange and green. I fell in love with them. I dug through the crate, finding two that I could see in our apartment. Michael walked up beside me, pushing the cart, a couple of bumpy gourds in the child's seat.
"These would look perfect on the coffee table! Maybe we can even put one on top of the TV!" I exclaimed. I placed the pumpkins into the cart next to the gourds. Michael laughed. I was giddy beyond belief. Something I didn't think that would happen at the pumpkin farm.
I then turned back to the path in front of me. Pumpkins of all sizes littered the pavement in malformed rows. As if there weren't enough there, the pumpkins also littered the grass. I couldn't see beyond the hill, but I was positive there were more pumpkins there.
Michael and I headed towards the rows, scouring for the perfect pumpkins. I knew Michael wanted at least two to make his famous pumpkin bread. I wanted at least two to carve into jack-o-lanterns. Even though I'd never been to a pumpkin farm, I did know how to carve a pumpkin; I was the one who carved the pumpkins Michael brought home.
Finding nothing that we liked in the pavement, we moved into the grass. Beyond into the distance, I could see more families looking for pumpkins and taking pictures. There was a giant wooden train cut out, along with a giant measuring stick asking, "How tall are you this year, 2009?" Past the grassy field was a petting farm, equipped with a camel and pony riding station. Next to the petting farm was a haunted house, people waiting in a long line just to get in. Next to the haunted house was a small bakery, a stand with dried multicolored corn in front of it. In the far left, just next to the barn was a tent with steam coming from it. I assumed that's where the roasting of the corn and the kettle corn was taking place.
"How about this one?" Michael called. He was standing at the bottom of the hill, a large pumpkin in hand. How he'd gotten the cart down there without me even noticing was pretty impressive; the cart was so noisy. I jogged over to him, dancing around the various children that were also running around.
"Looks good!" I replied, stopping in front of him. "Can we afford all of this?" He placed the pumpkin into the belly of the cart and began looking for another pumpkin.
"Yeah. Of course." Michael replied, picking up a similar looking pumpkin. He placed it into the cart as well. I grabbed a small looking pumpkin. It was probably one that would normally be ignored for larger ones. Which was a shame, seeing as it was shaped perfectly. I placed it into the cart as Michael picked up a medium sized pumpkin that was as smooth looking as glass. He placed it into the cart as well. He then grabbed the handle of the cart and began pushing the cart. I followed behind him, still taking in the farm. Children were all around, running and screaming. They loved seeing the huge pumpkins almost as much as their parents did. I watched as a toddler stumbled over to a giant pumpkin, managing to catch his balance before he fell. He then tried to lift the pumpkin. His chubby arms encircled the orange waist of the pumpkin, but he couldn't get it off the ground. His father came over, and the child let go of the pumpkin and pointed at it. His father hoisted up the pumpkin with ease, plopping it onto his right shoulder. He used his arm and neck as support as his child took off, the father following close behind him.
Michael was right. It was amazing. Just being here gave you a sense of awe wonder. I'd never admit it to him, but I'd want to come back here next year too. Maybe even the following year. He seemed to take my silence as a good thing. As we reached the pavement, he took my hand again, smiling.
I fell into step with him as we headed over to the tent. He let go of my hand.
"Wait here with the cart. I'll be right back." He said, leaning over and giving me a peck on the cheek. I wasn't the blushing type, but being here made me feel young again. I felt my cheeks grow warm as I smiled.
"Okay." I said. Michael then got into the steadily growing long line. I watched the workers inside the open tent. They were grabbing corn from the roaster and pulling back the limp husk. Placing it into what looked like a paper basket that fries went into, they then covered the corn with margarine. A young woman as waiting for her corn. She broke into a large grin as the steaming vegetable covered in margarine was handed to her. She then walked over to a table next to the tent, grabbing a salt shaker. She sprinkled some salt onto the corn and grabbed a few napkins. I watched her as she picked up the corn by the husk and the bottom of the cob and took a bite. Margarine oozed down the sides of her mouth, but she couldn't look happier.
My attention turned back to Michael. He wasn't much further up in the line than when he'd gotten into it just a few moments earlier. I watched as he pulled out his wallet and opened it up. His face turned from a grin to a grimace. I knew he didn't have hardly any money on him at all, as he had just put the majority of his money to this month's rent, even though I'd told him not to.
He pulled out a five dollar bill sadly and put his wallet back into his pocket. Crumpling the bill, Michael crossed his arms over his chest, looking as though he'd fallen into thought. I sighed and pulled my own wallet out of my pocket. Opening it up, I found my debit card sitting proudly in its own little pocket. I tapped the yellow card lightly. I would pay for the rest of the things we bought here today, including the pumpkins. It wasn't fair to expect Michael to pay when he clearly didn't have the money.
I closed my wallet and shoved it back into my pocket. Looking up, I saw that Michael was almost at the front of the line. My eyes trailed to people who had already got their food. There were people walking off with kettle corn bags that were as big as the toddlers that were carrying them. I laughed softly as I noticed a group of picnic tables, all filled with families munching on their corn cobs.
Michael came over to me, a grin on his face. In his hands were two cobs of corn, one clearly covered in margarine, the other not. He handed the one that was covered in margarine to me. I couldn't help but grin. We both picked up the cobs by the end and held it to our lips. The steam swelled up and hit my face. The roasted corn and margarine scent intoxicated me, leaving my mouth watering. I opened my mouth and took a bite, the heat of the corn stinging my lips and tongue.
"Hot?" Michael teased, watching my face.
"Why don't you take a bite of yours and let me ask you that?" I replied, blowing lightly on the section I wanted to eat. Michael took a bite of his corn; he had to have been blowing on it while I impatiently tried to eat mine. I watched his face as utter delight covered his cheeks.
After a few moments, I opened my mouth and took another bite. The roasted kernels fell into my mouth, releasing their flavor as I chewed on them. I couldn't get enough. I took another bite, ignoring the pain of the heat from the still too hot treat.
We finished our corn relatively quickly, a grin on both of our faces. Michael handed me a napkin and I took it gratefully as he took my finished corn and tray. I wiped my hands and my face, attempting to get off any excess margarine or uneaten corn kernels. Michael came back a few moments later, wiping his hands and face on a napkin as well.
"Let's go watch some kids ride the ponies." Michael said. I nodded. I grabbed the cart and began to push it, Michael following behind me. He then cleared his throat. I stopped and turned towards him. "On second thought, let's get going so I can work on my novel."
We walked out to the car, holding hands and pushing the cart through the dirt and the grass. Michael had let me pay, only because he realized he was broke. He let go of my hand and ran over to the car, pulling the keys out of his pocket. He then stuck the key into the lock and turned the key, unlocking the lock. The trunk opened and he pushed the door up as I stopped the cart at the bumper. Michael and I then loaded the pumpkins into the car, along with the caramel apples I bought Michael, mostly because he kept on eying them when we were in line.
Michael then tossed the keys to me as he took the empty cart back over to the corral. I caught the keys and closed the trunk, going over to the passenger side door. Unlocking the door, I opened it and sat down onto the seat, remembering to take the map off the seat first. I then put the key into the ignition and closed the door. Leaning over, I unlocked the driver's side and straightened back up. I placed the directions on top of the dashboard as Michael came back.
He opened his door quickly and hopped inside the car, shivering slightly. It was getting a lot chillier outside, and we were both glad Michael decided to leave when he did.
"So. What did you think?" He asked, not starting the car. He turned to look at me with a knowing grin on his face.
"It was nice. Good." I replied nonchalantly.
"Would you go back again?" He prodded. I couldn't help but smile at his willingness.
"Probably." I replied. He leaned over and kissed me lightly on the lips. "Yeah. I think we should make it a ritual." I kissed him back softly.
"Good." Michael replied. He then turned back to the wheel and started the car, still smiling. "And, even if you hadn't said to make it a ritual, I was planning on it anyway."
I smiled as he backed out of the parking lot. I couldn't wait until next October.