In The Midst of Silence

Casey followed Nina into Tarantino’s, much to her disdain. Unlike her best friend, Casey wasn’t really into the bar scene: the drinking, the dancing, the messiness. She didn’t like any of it.

But she couldn’t miss out on Nina’s birthday, now, could she?

Casey reminded Nina one too many times how lucky she was to have a friend like her earlier that day, so Nina had a puss on her face. Nina wanted to celebrate her 25th birthday The Right Way, and even though she knew Casey didn’t mean to be malicious, she was still annoyed. And very clear about it.

The girls walk right up to the bartender, Jason, who already had three shots ready for them. One for Casey, two for Nina.

Nina took all three shots. Casey rolled her eyes. It was just not a good night for their friendship.

All Nina wanted was a good birthday, for once in her life. She wondered why Casey couldn’t just see to that, and shut up? Every birthday of hers had some kind of disaster attached to it, why couldn’t this one be different?

Casey just wanted Nina to ‘fess up what has been going on with her. Casey didn’t even really do anything, so why was her best friend being so emotional? She knew Nina had a bad relationship with her birthday. Casey just assumed it was her Ghost of Birthday’s Past haunting her.

But Nina couldn’t be bothered, as long as she kept drinking.

Casey knew this was bound to happen. Nina has had a little too much to drink on every birthday of hers for the last ten years of their friendship. Nina was what she’d call, ‘a fun drunk,’ but this time, she was letting herself get to a point where she could barely hold herself up. And Casey wasn’t sure if Nina was doing this because of this unofficial tradition of getting drunk, or because she was annoyed with her friend.

And Casey wasn’t so sure if she wanted to know the truth. Instead of watching Nina dance hobble around, she helped her walk  over to a booth, sat her closest to the wall, and scooted next to her.

Nina didn’t even fight her. In fact, she even leaned her head against Casey’s shoulder. Her best friend might have been obnoxious, but she always took care of her.

As Nina nestled against Casey, a guitarist strummed a couple of notes. A band seemed to have set up at some point between the girls’ silent altercation and the journey from the bar to the booth, and now, they were starting up their first song of the night.

This was more of Casey’s thing.

Tarantino’s didn’t usually have bands play on Tuesday nights, but for some reason, here one was, performing a popular alternative song from the radio.

With nothing else better to do, Casey watched. Nina moved from her shoulder to the wall, so Casey pushed herself closer to the edge of the booth, trying to get a better view of the band.

Her eyes scanned across the four guys. The drummer rocked his head back and forth in that typical rock ‘n’ roll style, and the guitarist was wildly grinning, in a world of his own. The lead singer was popping veins out of his neck, strumming on his own guitar. And, finally, the bassist was rocking his head like the drummer, but slower, and softer. His eyes were closed as he played.

Casey decided in that first moment of watching the bassist that he was her favorite member. He looked so at peace in the middle of an alternative song, similarly to how Casey felt watching him, listening to him. While his band mates seemed out of their minds and larger than life, he was smooth, and in his element.

She looked over at Nina for a second, pushed her best friend’s dark brown hair from her face, and wondered if she felt at peace, sleeping in that position. She at least hoped she did.

Casey turned back to the band, and felt the music they played. She watched the bassist open his eyes, connect with hers for the slightest of a second, and then close them again. She wondered what he was thinking.

She also wondered if Nina would be okay to go to work in the morning. Deciding that she probably wouldn’t, Casey stood up, and looked to Jason for help.

She and Jason caught eyes, and he turned to the other bartender, before leaving his post. In the smoothest of movements, he made his way over to his friends, and picked Nina up, without question.

This situation probably happens a little more often than it should.

Casey took one look back at the band, and then disappeared into the night. She led Jason to her car, and opened the passenger door for Nina. Jason slid her in, put her seatbelt on, and sent the girls on their way home.

In the driver’s side, Casey put the radio on, lowered the volume, and listened to that first song the band played on the way home. After only a couple of strums, she decided that the band was better. And she felt at peace.

Prompt: Write a scene, but don’t give any of your characters dialogue.

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A twenty-two year old who lives through words and her Netflix account. She makes herself laugh more than others, and she claims that she is okay with that.

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