by Anisa Alice-Claire
art by Travis Baribeau
“Hit me again, barkeep.”
Drinking on V-Day had become somewhat of a ritual over the years. After all this time, that damned cupid couldn’t even be bothered to shoot an arrow in my general direction. The sound of pouring whiskey lured me from my thoughts.
The bartender waddled past, placing the glass down on his way by.
“And turn the T.V. up already, would you?”
Shooting me a sour look, he stood on his tiptoes and clicked the volume button a few times.
“And in other news… Eggies Chocolates announced a closure today. After an overwhelming response to their Heartthrob line they have decided to put all of their eggs in one basket and re-open under Love Melts. They will cater exclusively to Valentine’s Day.”
My phone vibrated.
“Barb? Where are you?”
“A code-red popped up. The Easter Bunny took Cupid hostage over that Eggies thing.”
“Ah, heck. When will that old drunk get it together? Okay, I’m on it. Text me the address.”
“Remember to refer to him as Charles. He gets pretty squirrelly when called Bunny.”
“Who do you think talked Santa off the ledge of the Empire State Building when Mrs. Claus threatened to divorce him if he didn’t cut the cookies out? That’s right, I did. This isn’t my first dance.”
“Alright, you know what’ll happen if Cupid isn’t active tomorrow.”
“Yes, yes… people will forget and love will cease to exist.” Releasing a
sigh, I hung up the phone.
Cars blurred passed as the cabby whizzed down the freeway in an attempt to earn the double-fare he’d been promised if I received a speedy delivery. He dropped me at the front of the tower in a matter of minutes, so I threw him a fifty.
A familiar voice rang through the hall as I approached the office. “Charles? It’s me, Barb. I am here to negotiate, okay?”
“Go aray!” he screamed.
“I’m coming in, alright?” I paused, waiting for him to respond. When he said nothing, I proceeded.
The door swung open, revealing Charles on a desk, swaying. He had the Cupid’s arrow in one paw and a beer in the other. Cupid laid hog-tied and gagged on the floor below.
“Reave me be, rady,” he slurred.
“You know the consequences if Cupid isn’t able to do his job tomorrow. What will be the point if people don’t love anymore? You’ll lose your powers, Charles.”
I stepped closer.
“Come any closer and the overgrown baby gets it!” he said, turning on his foot, trying to balance Cupid’s arrow in his hand.
Our eyes met just as he took a step. Then he slipped on the keyboard causing him to tumble face-first off the desk, the arrow scratched him on the way down.
“Rrouch!” He said, rolling over, staring at me with dreamy, love-filled eyes.
Untying the disgruntled Cupid, I sent him on his way, knowing full well there
wasn’t an antidote available to reverse the effects.
Well, at least Valentine’s Day was saved. As for my new problem… I guess the old saying rings true! Be careful what you wish for. Damn that Cupid. He buggered me again.
Anisa A. Claire manages property by day and is an eclectic author by night. She is also the creator and co-owner of Writer’s Carnival, a successful online community for writers. She has multiple publications in e-zines such as Long Story Short, 69 Flavors of Paranoia, The Short Humour Site, and Blood Magazine. She’s placed in, and won various contests, and completed in last year’s 3-Day Novel competition.