“What the hell are you even talking about?” His face wrinkled, brows dipping to a point in the middle of his forehead where business got done.
“What do you think I'm talking about?” Her hands on hips, not backing down. Not this time, no sir.
“I honestly haven't a clue.”
And on it went, as it had since the day they met. Seventeen years ago to the day, San Francisco. Some musty joint in the Castro played too much Dylan. He got up to take a piss and came back to find her in his seat. They fought, he won and bought her a drink, then took her to his place. They'd been together ever since.
Not exactly happily ever after, but it suited them. Rare to find someone else who would tolerate the other, and they both knew it from experience. So they did this instead. It became very much their thing.
As it was today. She served a smirk, he returned a sly grin. They stood silent, searching for weaknesses they would surely find.
“Okay,” she said, “let's say I believe you.”
“Sure, let's say it.”
Their rallies could last for hours. Stamina was a prerequisite for entering into this relationship. Be ready to battle, be ready to win. Or lose.
It's not whether you win or lose, they say, but how you play the game. And they played it well. Better than just about anyone. They could have charged admission, sold cable rights, retired to a small island in the Pacific, each claiming the same side of it as their own.
But they didn't. Nothing had changed since the Castro days. Musty joints were all they could do. So they did till the day they died.