Lark and Sparrow

        "How is it?"        *Pop*         "Oh, you didn't open it yet."         Lark sniffed the foam on the inside of the bottle cap and then sniffed the opening at the top of the bottle.         "We didn't think it was bad," said Sparrow, "not great but not bad."         "It's okay. It tastes like strawberry milk. But kind of weaker."         "Yeah. Jay said it was like expensive strawberry quick."         Lark took another sip but started giggling. She reflexively leaned forward trying not to dribble the pale pink concoction on her tee-shirt.         Sparrow simpered a smile. "You okay? It wasn't that funny."         Lark felt her face turning red. She made a show of effort putting the cap back on the bottle of strawberry stuff and then placed it on the table next to her stack of books. "What time is it anyway?" she asked, trying to change the subject.         "I don't know, I don't have a watch." Sparrow glanced around the coffee shop looking for a clock but found none. "They never have a clock up when you need one."         "Yeah, someone told me they do that on purpose. They don't want you to sit in here and think about how much time your wasting away in a coffee shop. They do the same thing in casinos."         "I think your giving them too much credit. They probably just too cheep to buy one."         Lark picked up her drink with the very tips of her fingers and hovered it over the table like a crane placing I-beams. She intentionally bumped it into the small steal cage containing little packets of cream and sugar and then sat back in her chair fiddling with the lid.         Sparrow stared for a few seconds and then glanced around the room more time. "Oh, so you've had some practice at this whiling away the hours stuff huh?"         Lark shrugged. "I'm gonna go pay for these books. Then we can go." Lark put on her sarcastic pouty face. "You wana stand in line wif me?"         "That's ok," replayed Sparrow, transfixed on a small child in a stroller gumming his way through a peach colored blanket.

        Sparrow put his key in the ignition and turned it one click so the radio would come on. He glanced once more at the entrance to the book store and then punched through the station presets looking for something to kill a few minutes with. Rock, some country, some old bible guy, news, news, news... Sparrow rarely listened to the radio so most of the presets were still locked in to the stations set by the previous owner, an anthropology major with frizzy hair.         The hatch in the back unlatched and Lark tossed a canvas bag full of books onto the pile of forgotten clothing returns and out of season winter gear. She shut the hatch door again, sending a pulse of compressed air up towards Sparrow in the front row. He could hear her humming as she walked around the side and hopped in.         "Miss me?"         "Doesn't it feel weird carrying that sack around all the time to put your stuff in?"         "No." Lark smiled.         "When I carry a bag around like that I always feel like they're watching me."         "Why, because your eco-conscience?"         "Eco-conscience? Who says that?"         "I do."         "No I mean like they're watching me to make sure I don't steal anything and put it in the bag. It doesn't matter what the bag is made of."         "Well don't steal anything and you won’t have anything to worry about."         "I don't."         "Then what's the problem?"         "They still look."         "So what? They can look, it's a free country. Anyway how do you know that's why they're looking? Maybe they think your cute?"         Sparrow considered how to respond, but came up with nothing.         Lark giggled and reached over Sparrow's head to rummage through her bag of purchases. "Here," she said, tossing a square of chocolate into Sparrow's lap.         "Oh, thanks. What's this for?"         Lark shrugged.         Sparrow shrugged, then started the car.