The day was warm, sun beating down on the blinding emerald grass that filled her mostly empty lot. The single tree offered shade over the front yard but not much, that left the doorstep a rather mundane location. Sweeping her sandals onto the mat, Abigail balanced the medium sized package against her hip to cradle the box into the curve of her waist. It was a juggle to manage the key free from her purse, but she managed. She wrestled the key into the door and twisted it, the lock unfastening with a quiet click.
“Hey!” She heard a familiar voice call from behind her. Hopping on one foot, her head arched backwards to get a clear view of the source. Suzanne was jogging up the path to her house in her usual favourite outfit. Abigail wrinkled her nose at the sea green sweater and denim shorts. It was such a nice day after all, what was wrong with this woman? Finally, Suzanne approached with an exhausted huff and bent over to grab her knees. “Hey… Moneybags.” She breathed out, then wiped her sweaty brow with the back of her sleeve.
Abigail adjusted the package again uncomfortably along her side. “Hi.” She gave a friendly smile over the box and gave a motion to the door with a jerk of her head to the side. “Could you please open that?”
Suzanne agreed, holding it open long enough for Abigail to enter into the house. The kitchen had been remodelled since her friend last visited. From boring vanilla cream to a rich blue painted along the sandpapered walls. Suzanne was in awe, unable to restrain herself from dragging a fingertip along the new wooden cabinets and thick marble countertops.
With the way her friend was carrying on, hands exclaiming magnificence over the makeover, Abigail couldn’t help but smile as she set the box down onto the table.
“So did you end up going home with any of the guys from the lounge?” Suzanne inquired, opening up a cabinet then closing it smoothly. Her curiosity didn’t bother Abigail at all as she shook her head.
“No. I was just there to have a little fun. The Llamas won, of course.”
“Oh. Good.” There was an awkward pause as Abigail gave Suzanne a raised eyebrow, then she shuffled towards the box and planted her palms on top of the tape. “So what’s in here?”
Abigail jumped at the chance for a topic change. “This! This is the final piece to my new kitchen!” Her hands flailed around the brown cardboard packaging as though it were a brand new car on one of those game shows she’d seen.
“Doesn’t cardboard brown it clash with the blue?” Suzanne retorted with a sly smile, then she crossed her arms against her chest and leaned back. “Whatever it is, let’s see it!”
Ripped off tape dropped down onto the table. Nobody had to tell her twice! Abigail reached into the box and slid it upwards, light green foam ‘peanuts’ flooding over the lip. With a few jiggles and her friend holding the box down, the object was finally released from its prison and set it atop the counter.
“It’s a…” Suzanne started with a tilt of her head.
“Ice cream!” Abigail nearly squealed in excitement, bouncing on her toes. Suzanne blinked, then burst into laughter. “Do you even know how to work it?”
Suzanne blinked, then burst into laughter. “Do you even know how to work it?”
“Of course I do! You just put the cream into the mix with the syrup, then afterward put it in a cone or bowl with whatever toppings you want. I’ve heard this model is good for all kinds of different flavors.” Abigail busied herself by pushing a few of the buttons on the object.
“Wanna give it a go?” Suzanne smirked, walking up behind her and placing her hand on the counter, leaning in to watch Abigail play with her new toy.
She gave it a thought for a moment, then went to her refrigerator. After pulling out the cream, she held up a jar of caramel. “I hope you have a sweet tooth.” She grinned playfully.
As Abigail poured the cream in the ice cream maker, her guest wandered around the kitchen aimlessly. Her feet shuffled and her fingers wrung tightly for a moment, then she shrugged to herself.
“Look.” She began with a quieter tone, almost as though she didn’t want to speak too loud. “I don’t really know why I acted like that. At the lounge, I mean. I shouldn’t have just left.”
Abigail smiled and gave a pat on her friend’s shoulder. “Hey, it’s no problem. Not everyone likes sports, right?” She gave the most innocent of smiles she possibly could, even though her brow knit worriedly. “It’s really not a big deal, okay?”
The machine beeped. Suzanne shrugged.
Without hesitance, they scooped the soft serve ice cream into cones and drizzled the sweet caramel smoothly along the tops. It oozed down the side of the cone, sticking to their fingers as they licked and sucked at the treat.
“Do you happen to have any plans for the weekend?” Suzanne broke the silence between them yet again as she set the cone balanced onto the table. Both ladies slid down into the chairs comfortably.
“Not particularly. Why, do you have plans?” Before her friend could reply, she continued. “I mean, I don’t really want to go out to any clubs or anything. I kinda of want a relaxing few days. No people, just chill and maybe read a good book or something.”
Suzanne smirked and took another lick of her ice cream. Her eyes dropped down to Abigail’s skirt, observing the pattern of stripes. Or was it her hips she was looking at? It was difficult to make certain as Abigail cleared her throat and took another large bite out of her ice cream. Her mouth nearly froze, eyes widened from the shock of flavor and chill.
Even with the attempt to swallow it subtly, Suzanne gave out a small laugh to herself, leaned back in her chair, and put her hands behind the back of her neck. “I guess we’ll just have to go camping then! Just you and me!”
Abigail nearly choked.