Facts – a short story

Kinsley nervously looked down at her cell phone that lay on her grey granite kitchen counter. Her best friend, Alecia, stood across from her sipping on her red wine. The sun highlighted Alecia’s soft blond curls perfectly. The white pantsuit she wore made her light blue eyes even brighter. She looked like an angel. All she was missing was a halo and wings. Annoyed with herself Kinsley paced back and forth. Replaying the conversation that took place earlier today over again, for what had to be the tenth time, in her head Kinsley sighed and started twirling her short brown hair around her finger.

“He’s not going to call. I made a fool out of myself,” Kinsley sighed.

“Yes he will. Try to be positive for once,” Alecia replied.

“Hello! Have you met me?” Alecia smiled as Kinsley waved her arms around in a grand gesture. She poured a little bit more wine into Kinsley’s glass and pushed it towards her. Kinsley gladly accepted the additional wine.

“Tell me what you said to him.” Kinsley wasn’t going to hear from Kevin, the water delivery guy, after today’s fact. She just knew it. Relaxing a little from the heavenly wine, Kinsley’s chocolate brown eyes softened as she spoke.

“Well you know when I’m nervous I shout out weird facts?” Alecia kindly nodded and waited for Kinsley to continue. Not that Kinsley had to ask or remind Alecia how weird she was. Kinsley had lost count how many times she blurted out facts and told every embarrassing detail to Alecia.

“You will actually be sort of proud of me. I kept my cool while he talked about his day. There was no immediate threat of me being a weirdo. I even smiled normally. Until,” Kinsley paused and sighed deeply. “He asked if I wanted to go out tonight.”

“What fact did you share?”

“A classic.” Kinsley could barely make eye contact with Alecia. How many times would her friend stand by her and try to convince her she wasn’t destined to be alone even though she spewed odd facts whenever a cute boy talked to her?

“Well?” Alecia asked after taking another sip of her wine.

“That the average person expels flatulence 14 times each day,” Kinsley winced as she repeated the information. Unlike Kevin, who seemed confused, Alecia tried to hold back her laugh while a smile escaped. Kinsley moaned and hid her small round face behind her hands.

“That’s not the worst part.”

“How could it be any worse?”

“I followed it up by quickly saying that I had only farted twice so far today but since I had broccoli, rice and beans for lunch I was pretty sure the rest would come later tonight.” Alecia couldn’t hold in her laugh a second longer. Kinsley conked her head on the counter not caring if she gave herself a concussion. Alecia sympathetically patted Kinsley on her back.

“So that’s what I’ve been smelling,” Alecia smiled.

“Thanks for the support,” Kinsley moaned.

“If you can’t laugh at yourself then who can you laugh at?” Kinsley lifted her head and took a breath. Alecia bit her lip at the seeing a small bump starting to show on Kinsley’s forehead. She just couldn’t catch a break.

“I’m never going to get a date if I can’t control my outbursts. I’m just too weird to date.” Kinsley glanced at her inactive phone and finished drinking the rest of her wine. She glanced down at her blue blouse thinking how she wasted time digging it out of her closet. There also wouldn’t be a need for the tight black jeans she wore that happened to make her butt look amazing.

“So you have a quirky habit. There’s a guy out there that will find it adorable, be able to look past it and see how great you truly are. Just don’t give up on yourself.”

“Thanks, you’re a good friend.”

“I know,” Alecia playfully smiled. Both looked down at Kinsley’s phone as it vibrated across the counter.

“Hot shorts?” Alecia asked glancing at the screen.

“Shorts are a part of his uniform and he fills it out nicely.” Alecia smiled hoping Kinsley would do the same. She didn’t. She looked like she was either going to throw up or pass out. Alecia prayed it would be neither.

“Breathe. Take deep breaths.” Kinsley did as she was told yet it wasn’t helping.

“Sweat. I’m sweaty. So sweaty,” Kinsley uttered. Alecia giggled as Kinsley placed paper towels under her armpits and under her boobs. She had never seen Kinsley this distraught.

“You must really like him.” Kinsley only nodded yes. “You need to answer.”

“I can’t. I’m going to say something stupid.”

“Just…talk…slow.” Kinsley partly smiled. To her horror Alecia answered the phone and placed it into her hand.

“Talk slow,” Alecia whispered. Taking another breath Kinsley spoke in a robotic tone.

“Hello. Thanks…for…calling. I’m sorry…about…earlier. When I get nervous…I…blurt out…weird facts.” Alecia watched as Kinsley listened to him talk. She took another couple of deep breaths. Suddenly Kinsley’s face started to become distorted. Alecia realized Kinsley was trying to hold back from stating another weird fact.

“Just breathe,” Alecia said and gently placed her hand on Kinsley’s arm. Sweat dripped down Kinsley’s face as she started shaking her head no.

“Feet have 500,000 sweat glands and can produce more than a pint of sweat a day!” Kinsley hung up the phone and tossed it onto the counter. As she did, it slid across and knocked the rest of Alecia’s wine right onto her pantsuit. Both gasped at the glass breaking on the floor.

“I’m so sorry!” Kinsley instantly grabbed the paper towels from her armpits and started wiping up the wine on the floor. “I’m such a nut case. He will never speak to me again. I’m mortified.” Kinsley sat on her bottom and soaked up the rest of the wine on the floor. Not letting the fact her favorite suit was ruined Alecia spoke softly.

“Stop being so hard on yourself. Embrace your weirdness. It makes you unique.” Alecia’s words couldn’t console Kinsley. She had always felt different, out of place and now her fears were being confirmed.

“I’m nothing more than an unwanted psycho.” Alecia frowned and took her friend’s hand in hers and helped her to her feet. She wasn’t sure what to say.

“How much do I owe you for the suit?”

“Don’t worry about it.” Kinsley squeezed Alecia’s hands as a thank you. They both went wide eyed as Kinsley’s phone started vibrating again. Kinsley blankly stared at her phone. Alecia gently pushed the phone towards her.

“You got this.” Kinsley took a deep breath. As she exhaled she started to let go all of the anxiety that was in her mind and body. For the first time a random fact didn’t pop into her head. Maybe she did have this. Maybe she had maxed out her crazy. How many more facts could she possibly remember? She took another deep breath and felt ready. Smiling naturally Kinsley finally answered the phone calmly.