"Gladys, you'll break your neck in those stilts!"
She opened the carton proudly to show off her flea market purchase.
"Grady is so tall. I need them for the dance tomorrow."
"Don't forget to lean in to him," Brandi advised.
"Aha! Another good reason for wearing them!"
"You'll have to get to the door," Brandi reminded, "and down the stone walk to the pallisade."
"Damn," Glad remarked. "I'll have to hold on firmly to his arm."
"Tradeja!" Brandi piped in envy. Grady had arms that wouldn't quit seducing by contour and grace.
"To die for," Gladys agreed. "All mine for tomorrow evening," she added in boastful teasing.
"I may steal those shoes. What a great plan! You are soooo devious, kitten."
"Kitty, kitty. Gettin ready to play," Glad trilled in impatient anticipation.
Grady threw his spare jeans and the faded muscle tee from Bro Staylor's Beech Hut last summer in the washer/dryer and spun the knobs until suds started happening for Logan's droopy amusement.
"You ain't nothin but a hound dog," Grady hummed and danced for his attentive best friend.
Grady juggled his black derby hat with the grouse feathers pinned to a silk crimson ribbing down from the book shelf.
"We gonna be lovin it tonight," Grady crooned later as he wrestled the jeans up and closed. He pulled speckled locks back and bound them with a snap in the beaded band on his wrist.
Gladys showered the auburn rinse into whitening strands that had snuck out over the month past since she'd run into Grady at the phone kiosk in the mall.
"La la," she called for Brandi after dry-curling. "Do I look 17 again yet?" she laughed.
"Close enough, beauty," Brandi assured her from the mirror of her mind at Saint Anthony's Prep.
"This is so amazing," Gladys nearly wept."I was crazed by him way back when."
"But your Dad lowered the Fairchild boom," Brandi surmised.
"With concrete and nails," Glad affirmed.
"You have now arrived at a joy of being old and single!" Brandi announced in roomie comraderie.
"Survived and unwived," Gladys summarized with new glee.
"Let's do it," Brandi urged, reaching for the new shoes to wind under her old friend's feet and guiding her carefully toward the bench by the front door just when the bell rang as they both smiled and winked for the convivial conspiracy at hand.
402 words 2296 characters