Coffee: It’s the elixir of love. I know there are those who believe that title belongs to various other concoctions, but not so. It’s coffee. I’m sure of it. In fact, as I was preparing to do this week’s “Coffee” post, I started thinking about how I’ve used coffee as the primary beverage between the romantic couples in all my novels. So I thought I’d throw together three excerpts from those stories for today’s take on the subject.
From Cameron’s Rib, page 119.
Thursday morning Suzanne sat across from Cameron at his desk and placed her tape recorder between them as she prepared to begin their interviews. The room was fragrant with the chocolate, hazelnut coffee they were enjoying, and as Cameron looked across at Suzanne, he felt a sense of deep contentment, sharing this time with her. …
From Jonah’s Song, pp. 95,96.
That decision being made, they decided to play a game of Scrabble and have more coffee, and before they knew it, the evening had grown late, and all four of them were ready to turn in. At the door to his room, Jonah turned to Vallie, who was just opening her own door. … “Why don’t we plan on setting down around 9:00 tomorrow morning,” he said. “And see what we can come up with. That way we’ll have time to run through the music a couple of times before tomorrow night.”
Vallie nodded her head. “That sounds fine.”
“Good,” he said, smiling his signature smile at her now. “And thank you, Valentina … for agreeing to be my partner in this venture.”
Vallie smiled back, genuine happiness in her face. “I’m happy to do it, Jonah. Goodnight.”
“Goodnight, my dear,” he said, and turned to open his door.
As Vallie prepared for bed, she kept thinking about how he had called her “my dear” several times recently. Every time he had said those words, Vallie had felt a tingling all through her. She told herself he hadn’t meant anything special by the term, but still, the endearment lodged in her heart, to be taken out again later and treasured. …
From Slate, pp.3-6.
Slate sat in a back booth at Katy’s Koffee Korner, his eyes slowly scanning the room. They came to rest on a woman sitting alone in a booth across from his. She was sitting with her head bent forward and was massaging her temples.. Headache, he surmised, and glanced back at the waitress, winking at her as she set his coffee on the table and promised to be back with his breakfast in a couple minutes.
While he ate, Slate glanced occasionally at the woman across from him. She had raised her head now and was sipping her coffee, her eyes closed. Her hair was a warm light brown shade, with just a tinge of highlights from the sun here and there. It barely skimmed her shoulders in soft waves. Her features weren’t classically beautiful, but she was really pleasant to look at. Her complexion was unblemished, and her eyes and eyebrows seemed to be etched in at exactly the right angles to highlight her whole face. Her mouth was rather wide, and her lips looked as if an artist had sculptured them. Yes, all in all, the sight was something he took pleasure in this morning.
He’d evidently taken just a little too much pleasure, because he’d been staring. Suddenly, she looked up and right at him, a question in her large, brown eyes. Almost exactly the color of a copper penny, Slate thought to himself as his attention focused on those eyes. He was caught off guard by the vulnerable look on her face, and instinctively he smiled his most genuine smile at her and then went back to concentrating on his food. A minute later, he heard her conversation with the waitress who had come back to bring her a fresh carafe of coffee.
“Can you give me exact directions from here to the Sandstone Motel?” she asked.
“Sure, Hon. It isn’t hard. I’ll write it down for you and be right back.”
“Thank you,” she answered, smiling and lighting up her face for just a moment, but when the waitress left, she went back to rubbing her temples and then her eyes. She finally leaned her head back against the high divider of her booth and closed her eyes, but Slate, glancing sideways at her, noticed a couple of tears trickling down her cheeks. After a minute more, she took a deep breath and opened her eyes, wiping the tears from her face with her hands, and by that time the waitress was back with her directions.
“Thank you so much,” she said and handed the waitress some bills. “This is for you.”
“Thanks, and you come and see us again, Okay?”
“If I have time,” she said smiling slightly at the retreating waitress, and then she slid out of her seat and stood up. Before she could take a step, she swayed and reached for the back of the booth to regain her balance. She was sitting in the last booth across from him, and no one else had noticed the unusual action. She sat back down on the edge of the booth, holding her head. Slate had learned better than to interfere in someone else’s business, but something about her just seemed so vulnerable that he couldn’t keep from getting up and walking over to her booth.
“Are you all right, Miss?” he asked, resting one hand on the table and leaning towards her. She looked up at him then, her eyes registering her pain.
“Yes,” she answered in almost a whisper. Then she cleared her throat and tried to speak louder. “It’s just this stupid migraine headache. They often make me woozy. Eating should help, but I guess the food just hasn’t had time to get into my system yet. I’ll just sit here another minute. Thanks,” she added, smiling wanly.
Slate sat down in the other side of the booth. “How about another cup of coffee?”
She turned back into the normal sitting position in the booth and nodded her head as he picked up the carafe and poured some into her cup. She began drinking it immediately, and Slate stepped over to his own booth and retrieved his cup, bringing it back with him. He poured fresh coffee for himself and topped hers off again. She smiled at him, her eyes seeming to show a little relief now. …
If you’d like to join in the fun for “Coffee Thursday,” just post your own picture, story, article, or poem on the subject and hop over here to leave us the link in a “Comment” window below. I look forward to seeing your take on coffee this week.