The Favor

By: Kathy


I have to give him credit. I mean, he actually let me get through the whole thing before he said anything. I was expecting to get one, okay maybe two, sentences out before he erupted. After all, it's not everyday you have to ask your best friend to do something like this. Especially if the best friend in question is one Jim Ellison.

Okay, I got to admit it. I'm probably being a little hard on the guy. After all, this is the guy who agreed to come and speak to a class for me. I tell you that totally blew me away. Jim Ellison standing up and talking in front of all those people. And just because I asked him to. Well, I did have to result to the puppy dog eyes. The pouting lower lip kinda helped too. Who'd of thunk it? Jim Ellison falling for my pleading look. I wonder if he knows that since then I've started practicing that look in the mirror. I'm getting pretty good at it, too.

Speaking of being good, Jim was doing pretty well with the class too. That is, until the smoke bomb went off. I am still totally pissed at Brackett. Man that guy IS a dick. I still can't believe Jim tasted that thing he picked up off of the floor though. Talk about grossing someone out. UGH. And he complains about some of the stuff I cook? I can guarantee you my stuff never touches the floor. Well, except for the time I tried that new recipe. I still can't believe Jim spit it out. Talk about over-reacting. It took me an hour to scrub it out of the rug.

I mean, c'mon, it was just a little bit of Tabasco sauce. And is it my fault I accidentally got the extra-hot kind? It's not like I started the conversation with that girl. She started talking to me first. Honest, she did. I swear it. Now I just have to figure out what to wear when I take her out next week.

Oh god, next week. I wonder if Jim will do it? There's no way I'd be able to handle this by myself. Me and my big mouth. How do I get myself into these things? Wait a minute, here. Oh, yeah. Denise asked me to do it. Why can't I ever just say 'No', huh? Hell, between Jim and me, I don't know which of us is worse when it comes to women.

Man, I hope he'll do this. After all, I have to admit, this was some of my best work. My lower lip trembled just the right amount. And the slight tilt of my head was a stroke of genius. I mean, c'mon, who could resist it? Hopefully, not Jim. Please, not Jim. Please, Jim.

What am I getting so worked up for? He'll say yes. He has to. Please let him say yes. I promise I'll make it up to him. A week without tests. No, I know I'll follow all his 'house rules' for a month. Oh, man, who am I kidding? Like I'm going to be able to do that. I'd be lucky to last two weeks. Even one week would be a struggle.

I know. I could cook all the meals for a month. I actually like to cook. But, could I get Jim to eat it this time? I could stick to stuff he likes. Yeah, that would work. Or I could just get Wonderburger every night for a month. God, for Wonderburger I could get him to do just about anything. Oh yeah, that has some definite possibilities.

AAH! Where is he? He said he had to take a walk and think about it. It's been an hour already. Where did he go? All the way to Tacoma and back? Or how about a nice hike up Mt. Rainer? He's certainly had enough time for that. WHERE THE HELL ARE YOU, JIM?

Alright, just calm down a minute here. Nice deep breaths. In and out. Nice and steady. I am relaxed. I am relaxed. Okay, that's better now. Relaxed and calm. Nice and mellow. Not a problem. Everything is under control.

Yeah, riiight. Who am I kidding? I'm going nuts here. It's a simple question. Either will you or won't you. You will, won't you, Jim? I swear I won't tell any of the guys at the station about it. Though I could make killing if I did. Man, forget betting at the track, this could set me up for the next year. The guys would pay big time for this information. But, then I'd have to tell them about my part in things. Don't think so. Hell, I couldn't do that to Jim. He's my friend. The best I've ever had.

Not to mention, he would make my life a living hell if I did. I mean, he's ex-covert ops, ex-army ranger, ex-just about everything. He KNOWS shit. Scary, scary shit. Not to mention that twisted sense of humor of his. There's no telling what he could come up with. I'd have to sleep with one eye open. I'm already nervous enough. I don't need that kind of anxiety, too.

It's bad enough he's putting me through this. I mean, it's now been . . . oh man that can't be right. An hour and FIVE minutes. I know it's been longer than that since I looked at the clock last. I KNOW it. It has to have been longer than that. Doesn't it? It feels like it's been longer than that. Oh shit. That is it. It's official. I, Blair Sandburg, have completely lost my mind. You happy now, Jim?

Okay, I just gotta get my mind on something else. Yeah. That will work. All right. What should I think about? I got it! Where will I go on that date next week? There is that new exhibit at the museum. It's really cool. There are some really fascinating artifacts from several pre-civilized cultures.

Hey, Jim would probable enjoy seeing the weapons. Maybe I can convince him to go. We could try out that new restaurant downtown first. The new Chinese place. Jim likes Chinese food, especially . . . wait a minute. Oh, man, this is un-freaking-believable. How do I go from thinking about my date next week to thinking about Jim? I need to get my head examined. I really, really do. No, what I need is something to keep me busy until Jim gets back.

I wonder. YES! Okay, this will keep me busy and it'll soften Jim up some more. When he comes back and sees what I'm doing, there's no way he'll be able to say no. All right I have just about everything I need. All except, I can't believe this. C'mon, where is it? Where did I put the . . .

So involved in his search, Blair didn't notice Jim enter the loft and come up to stand behind him.

"Hey, Chief."

Startled by the sudden voice, Blair jumped. "Shit," he yelled. Turning to face his smirking partner, Blair asked, "Well?" Then, braced himself for Jim's reply.

"Well what?" Jim asked.

"Don't do this to me. I have been going out of my mind here. Will you? Please?"

"Yes."

"Aw, man, c'mon. Won't you . . . wait a minute. Did you just say 'Yes'?"

"Yes, Chief," Jim responded. "I just said yes. Or course if you've changed your mind . . ."

"No! I mean thanks, Jim. I really appreciate this. I didn't know who else to ask."

"Don't mention it. And I mean that. Don't mention this to anyone. Nobody knows about this. Understand?"

"You got it. Man, I can't believe you're actually going to do this. This is great. I'm really looking forward to this. Who knows? You might end up liking it," Blair said.

"Hold up there, Chief. I just got two things to say."

"Yeah?"

"First, you had better finish fixing those brownies and since I'm going to do this for you, they'd better be double fudge. Second, there is absolutely, positively no way I am going to end up LIKING this."

"C'mon. You tell a few stories, play a few games. Admit it. Helping out at Rainier's daycare for one day won't be so bad."

"You know, Sandburg, you could be right. I mean, after all the time I've spent babysitting you, keeping up with a bunch of pre-schoolers should be a breeze."

The End

SURF ALL DAY @ BAJA.COM / the interactive peninsula!

Cool Counters @ baja.com