Zas sat back on the couch, glass of wine in his hand. His head rested on the back of the couch with his other arm across his eyes. He was waiting for Ezza to get home. It had been quite a day and he needed the company.
Ezza walked in shortly after 2 am to find Zas on the couch in the dark, an empty wine glass beside him on the floor. He was just staring at the wall. Ezza opened his mouth, but before he could say anything Zas spoke.
“Well, it could have gone better, it’s done now though.” Zas said quietly.
Ezza walked over to his friend nod smacked his legs off the couch. He sat down beside Zas he re-positioned himself, and then looked at his friend.
When Zas just sat there ignoring him Ezza sighed.
It wasn’t all bad. Just the Katrina part.
Yeah, I figured that’s what was bad. So I take it things didn’t go the way you planned?
Who knew the ol’ girl could cry? I didn’t think it would effect me like this.
Wanna talk about it?
When he didn’t receive an answer from his friend, Ezza laid back on the couch.
“Well I had a good day at work. I got a promotion. I’m now Chief Drink Operator at the club.” Ezza put out there.
“What does that mean?” Zas asked.
“Nothing really, same job, little bit better pay. Same old same old.” Ezza said, Zas laughed a little.
“Congrats.” Zas said after a few moments.
“Thanks, I wasn’t expecting it, but things have been slow at work lately and the regulars haven’t been ordering a whole lot. So, I made a decision and it worked, like really worked. I even got a wine rack.” Ezza told Zas.
“What decision did you make?” Zas asked Ezza.
“I imported this new drink into the club. It was really expensive, I thought Jacques was going to blow up. He was so mad and puffed up, but the customers loved it. It was really pricey, so it took a bit of convincing to get them to try it, but once they did-they loved it.” Ezza said with a bit of pride in his voice.
Zas smiled and patted his friend on the leg.
“Well, I had a good day at work too. We had to cater this event and they didn’t deliver everything we needed, so we were missing the cheese. I called a company near by and they had this old cheese that would work from the description given. There was also this other cheese that would work really well. My choice right? So I took a chance and ordered the stinky one as a new experience. Guess what? It worked, customers loved it.” Zas said. He seemed tired to Ezza.
“Well that’s good right?” Ezza asked him.
“Yeah, but the stuff really smelled. I mean these people just wolfed it down. I fear the palates of the people I serve. Like do they even taste my cooking? Could I serve rotted food and they’d find it just as acceptable?” Zas complained, and even though Ezza tried he couldn’t help but laugh at his friends little tirade.
“So, now the bad part.” Ezza promoted Zas, who sighed.
“I called her. I thought if there was anyway possible to make this work, it’s been a few days, let’s try. She agreed to come over. That was mistake number one.” Zas said cringing a little.
“It was a mistake to try working things out?” Ezza asked confused.
“No no, not seeing that she agreed to come so easily was mistake number one. When she got here, not gonna lie, it was awkward. I barreled through like I normally do. I took a page out of your book Ezza. I told her she hurt my feelings by leaving, that things hadn’t been good between us in a while, and I was willing to work on it.” Zas said. His face drooped a little at this point. Ezza waited for him to continue.
“She gave me this song and dance about how things were hard at work and at home for her. How she didn’t seem to be getting anywhere in her career and trying to keep her sisters out of trouble was taking up too much of her time.” Zas gave Ezza a can-you-believe-it look.
“I said to her, well your sisters are full grown and can take care of themselves. Dina At least has Ezza. Nina has Don and she seems capable enough. So loosen up and make more time for yourself to relax and/or practice.” Zas paused staring off into space for a few moments as if he was reliving the whole thing.
“Sounds like sound advice. Coming from you, it’s a little strange.” Ezza said with a smile.
“That’s what she said. Ha! Seriously she said it was weird coming from me. She also said that I didn’t understand. As the oldest it was her job to look after the other two. I said I get it, I have a full grown kid to look after myself, but now he has your sister and they’re doing fine.” Zas grunted out the last sentence because Ezza punched him in the arm.
“She says, that’s not the point. I could have been more understanding and supportive. I said I’m trying. I asked what she needed. She said pampering. Can you believe that? The woman nearly bleeds me dry and she says she needs more pampering. Anyways, I said to her that’s fine, I can support you more and make things easier, but that doesn’t necessarily mean blowing through cash. I said together we could learn to appreciate what we have and save for a few things. I mean I thought if you’re really gonna try with Dina until we make it home, I could at least try with Katrina right? I mean not about kids or anything, I wouldn’t want to raise any kids but our love child, but maybe living together?” Zas seemed a little unsure of his last statement but Ezza let it slide.
“What love child?” Ezza asked.
“The one were raising together after you screw up with Dina Bug-Man.” Zas said, then both men kind of chuckled
“Katrina says to me, you just don’t appreciate me. I need a real man, one who will give me what I need. I was like and what’s that sweetheart? A yacht? Then she goes off on one of her tangents about who knows what and why I’m not a real man and then she says these words that just made my heart stop. She says well Don never complains when I get him to buy me things after staying the night. Staying the night. She actually said that.” Zas’s hands curled to fists on his lap.
“I said, Don lives there why would he need to stay the night with you? Ezza her face went pale. I knew, Mates did I know what she meant. Now I know how my father felt all those years married to my mother. I blew up at her, I’m not even sure what I yelled at her to be honest. I just knew I wasn’t going to end up like my dad. Don’t get me wrong, I love both my parents and Mai, but I don’t know how he could stand to look at Mai and see my mother and another man mixed into her face. I just know I couldn’t do it.” Zas let out the breath he didn’t know he’d been holding. Ezza placed a reassuring hand on his arm and gave it a squeeze.
“She left in tears, and I feel like a cold-hearted bastard, because I didn’t feel anything. Am I so far gone that I don’t have normal feelings anymore.” Zas asked Ezza uncertainly.
“I think you should give yourself more credit. I think you felt something, you just didn’t recognize it. It’ll get better with time.” Ezza said. He and Zas stayed up talking for a bit and then retired.
Man these two are having a rough time, he thought as he waited outside the house. He had waited until both men had gone inside. As he had crept closer he could hear snippets from their talk through the open windows. It sounded like his little toys were having a rough time even without knowing everything.
After he was certain they’d both gone to bed, he crept to the door and pulled out his gadget. Unlocking the door was easy, easier than the human way anyways. Not that he was too shabby at that method either, but he’d take ease over work every time. He had enough on his plate as it was.
Slowly easing into the house he crept up to the computer and waited listening. Once he was certain they weren’t going to come out he eased into the chair and started opening files on the desktop. It wasn’t long before he found what he wanted. He erased all the files pertaining to alien conspiracy theories and then found the program that was sending a signal out into space. It was weak, but one extra line of code and they could have sent through 5 different universes without trying. Thank the Goddess that the one called Zas hadn’t been smart enough to figure that out yet. Taking a small device from his pocket, he inserted it into the computer and activated it. Almost immediately the signal program stopped working, then the code began to erase itself. His end was done, all information linking his network and himself to these two was gone. Now he just waited for confirmation from his contacts.
A few moments straining to listen in the dark and his cellphone vibrated in his pocket. Pulling it out he put it up to his ear.
“It’s clear, the signal is gone and there’s no trace. Did you get the files erased?” The voice on the other end asked.
“Yes,” he said quietly. “No need to panic Sergio. I’ll be leaving shortly. I’ll take a lead role from now on. Make sure you cover your tracks well my friend and keep in touch.”
After hanging up his phone, he checked to make sure he had left no trace of himself in the house. Then he slipped back out the door and relocked it behind himself. Just as he made it to the road his cell started vibrating again.
“Hello Love. Yes I’m on my way. No everything’s fine. Yes thank you, if you could pack that as well. No I don’t know how long this will take. Look, let’s not argue about it, I love you. Should I bring home something tonight? It’ll be awhile until we can spend some quality time together. Alright I’ll grab it and be home shortly.” He hung up the phone, a smile spreading across his face. Tonight was going to be a good night and then he’d be free for a while.