“So, she was the one who turned Jeremy into the Bar?” Zach asked, sitting at the bar, waiting for Jeremy to return from his settlement conference with Karen. “That’s straight up cold.”
“Yeah. Well, maybe. I don’t know. He was drinking a lot in those days, and I don’t know the whole story, just what Jeremy’s told me, so take it with a grain of salt. I don’t know her side,” Benjamin said.
“What has Jeremy told you?”
“That she’s the worst person of all time. And that’s coming from someone who once described Hitler as ‘pretty cool’.”
“Well, if Jeremy doesn’t like her…wait, did Jeremy really say that about Hitler?”
“What? No. I was just emphasizing…” The door to the bar opened and the two quickly went into an awkward silence. Jeremy walked in and sat down at the bar.
“Zach, I need you to start drawing up a settlement agreement. I’ll look it over when you’re done,” Jeremy said flatly, looking straight ahead.
“On it,” Zach said, quickly standing up from the bar and heading into the office.
“So, how did it go?” Benjamin asked softly.
“Pretty well. We settled relatively quickly. Really, nobody was looking for a fight.”
“No, I mean how did it go?”
“It was fine.”
“Do you want to talk about it?”
“Can I get you anything? Club soda, or that orange juice and ginger ale concoction you’re so fond of?”
“Jesus Christ, Ben, I’m not a fucking child!” Jeremy snapped. “I said I’m fine.”
“Alright,” Benjamin said, holding up his hands defensively and backing away from the bar. “Let me know if you want anything.”
“Just because I had to negotiate with the hell-cunt that ruined my life…it’s not a big deal. I’m over it.”
“You sound over it,” Benjamin said from the other side of the bar. “And you probably shouldn’t use the word ‘cunt’. That’s a hate word.”
“You’ve been hanging around Veronica too much.”
“All I’m saying is that it’s disrespectful toward women.”
“No, you’re right. I should respect absolutely every woman on the planet, because all women are worthy of respect. None are deceitful, dumb, or have any flaws whatsoever. All women are perfect, brilliant goddesses. I could never say anything bad about women, because no woman has anything bad about her. It’s not like they’re people or something.” Jeremy shook his head.
“I get your point. You hate people. Still doesn’t excuse your hate speech.”
“What the fuck ever. Get me an orange juice-ginger ale concoction.”
Benjamin made Jeremy’s drink and handed it to him. “We really need a name for this.”
“Why? Orange juice-ginger ale concoction too verbose for you?”
“A little bit. We need something shorthand.”
Jeremy shrugged. “How about a virgin orange fizz?”
“Nah. Too simple. How about a kiddy creamsicle?”
Jeremy shook his head. “No. It’s nothing like a creamsicle. Besides, I hate children.”
“You hate everything,” Benjamin said. “What do you have against children?”
“They’re always running around so happy, acting like life is a big pile of pickles. Nobody’s had the decency to tell them life is one big gauntlet of shit. Until people learn that, they’re insufferable.”
“You must hate me then, because I’m just loving life over here.”
“Whatever,” Jeremy said, picking his drink up and standing. “I have work to do.”