Snakes and Pills

054 - bail neck

It was a beautiful day, the kind of weather that gave way to great opportunities for picnicking. That was exactly what Paul and Abbey had chosen to do with their Saturday afternoon. When they arrived at the park, they found that many other couples and families had taken the same inspiration from the weather.

No bother, though. The crowds were not that bad, and the young couple managed to find a relatively quiet little spot they could call their own. Paul took great care in laying down the blanket smoothly across the ground, while Abbey carefully removed all their food from the basket and laid it out for consumption.

This, surely, was going to be a swell afternoon.

The two discussed all kinds of random topics while they chomped down on their meals. Midway through his sandwich, a notion occurred to Paul. He thought about it to himself as he continued chewing the cold cuts and swallowing them down. It was a golden notion, he was sure of that, but he needed to find the right moment to present it to his darling wife.

Finally, after the two had eaten the bulk of their food and sat back idly on the blanket, Paul thought his moment had come.

"My dear wife," he began so nobly, "I must say, what an excellent meal." She smiled. "Oh, thank you. But it was nothing special."

"No, it was indeed something special, and in no small part it has contributed to making this a very special and charming afternoon. But I must confess," he said, giving a smile, "that I have an idea that I feel would make this afternoon even better."

Abbey's smile grew even larger as she asked, "Really? What is it, dear?"

With no hesitation at all, Paul suggested, "Well, how about a screw?"

Now Abbey's face turned slightly red, while she continued to smile, and even laughed slightly, at first taking her husband's suggestion as one made in jest. But Paul waited for a response, and Abbey began to realize that he spoke in sincerity. "You're not serious, are you Paul?"

"Indeed I am, and why shan't I be?" he answered lightly. Her face grew even redder than before, but she did not change her expression much, nor did she move swiftly to dismiss his idea. After some time spent considering, she again continued her questioning.

"You are so silly. Where... where would we even do such a thing?"

Paul motioned off to some shrubs and bushes a few meters off from where they had been picnicking. "Why not, say, right over there, in those bushes? No one would see us."

Now Abbey's attitude began to shift. "Those are mint bushes, Paul!" she said in an angered tone. He looked at them. "They are? Do mint even come in bushes? I thought they were just like, little plants."

"They can grow into the size of bushes, Paul!" she quickly returned. "Hmm," he muttered, "I don't know about that, but I suppose it's possible. Either way, what's the problem with a quick screw in the mint bushes? Sounds lovely."

"You really don't know?" she said, now quite upset. "No, what would be the big deal?" he said back, innocently.

"The 'big deal,' Paul, would be, oh, I don't know, maybe that I am allergic to mint? I can't believe you don't know that about me!"

Paul didn't say anything in immediate response. He turned to her after a moment or two and asked, "Can people even be allergic to mint? I've got to say, I don't think I've ever really heard of that allergy before."

Abbey was visibly fuming, but she contained herself from lashing out further at her husband. She maintained her composure and her cool.

"Paul, I'd like to go home now."


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