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Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Fantasy · #2307126
Just an enchanted spot in the road, at least on occasion.
“What’ll it be, Mac?”

The little hairs on the back of Peter’s neck twitched as he slid onto a rickety stool. Already, he didn’t like the man behind the counter.


“What’s that, Mac?” The man jammed his cigarette into the corner of his mouth and leaned forward on his elbows. His nametag said, “Bud.”

“My name’s Peter.”

Bud barked a dry laugh. “That so? What’ll it be, Mac?”

Peter pursed his lips and looked around the diner. It was a dump.

“Nice joint, huh?” Bud asked. “Never any business. But she’s all mine.”

He scrunched his nicotine-wrinkled face. “What’ll it be?”

Peter’s scalp and fingertips were tingling. But Bud wasn’t worth the effort for what Peter had in mind.

“Just a coffee. Black.”

Bud rolled his eyes and turned toward the back counter. “Whooptie, do! Big spender.”

He grabbed a yellowed mug and filled it halfway with thin, cold-looking coffee.

“Here ya go, hotshot,” Bud said, slamming the cup down in front of Peter.


Bud grunted, then turned to a newspaper on the back counter.

Peter’s whole body was on fire. He couldn’t hold out much longer..

“First customer all week, and all he wants is coffee,” Bud muttered. “This place is cursed, I tell you!”

That was more than Peter could bear. He hopped down from his stool and screamed, “Shut up, you toad!”

He regretted it immediately, but he wasn’t about to take it back. Besides, what was Bud going to do about it?

Peter sighed and dropped a dollar on the counter. More than the coffee was worth.

At least the tingling had stopped.

As Peter stepped out into the night, he reached around the door facing and turned off the light. No need to waste electricity.


Peter stopped and smiled. “Take care, Bud.”
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