Crap, the cafeteria was full again, so full that every table hosted several people sporting laptops and folders busting with papers that spilled out onto each plastic tabletop. Jenny held her tray of food in both hands and sighed heavily. Not a single goddamned place to sit and eat her lunch in peace.

Briefly, she contemplated going to the park bench outside, but the thought of November's chill made her reconsider. The smell of fresh sweet potato fries tickled her nose and made her mouth water. Annoyed but starving, she swallowed her pride and sat cross-legged on the floor against the room's wall, the one made from tinted glass that let in light without warmth. She shivered, grabbed the lime slice from the corner of her tray, and squeezed its juice liberally over the fries. Looking at the full room, she watched the lonely people crowded together, each one searching for a connection via cyberspace while huddled inches away from other souls searching like themselves.

She munched on the fries and realized how lucky she was, sitting on the floor, to be one of those rare souls who enjoyed solitude. Then she leaned back against the cold glass wall and finished her lunch.


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ganymeder (joined over 11 years ago)
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Author Catherine Russell shares her life with her high school sweetheart, their son, and two ferocious puppies in the Wilds of Ohio while writing short stories, editing her novel, and learning more about the craft every day. Her work has been published in Flash Me magazine, Metro Fiction, Beyond Centauri, and the ‘Best of Friday Flash – Volume One‘ and the ‘Best of Friday Flash – Volume Two‘ anthologies.

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