What Are the Chances?

chances, romance, Boston night, PixabayI scrutinized the man under veiled eyes. My long dark eyelashes were one of my vanities, and in times like these they came in useful. (The Exit Door)

Since when did I follow a complete stranger ( I wondered – what’s an incomplete stranger?) out of a social setting where I knew at least half the participants, toward a “wonderful café” he suggested?

“George,” the blue-jeaned “complete” stranger said as if reading my mind. And no, I don’t do this often.”

“Do what?” I asked.

“Take a chance on a woman I know nothing about.”

“What are the chances?” I retorted, and then answered my own question. “I suppose chances are we both wanted to escape the normal drudgery of small talk.”

By then we were out of the high-end hotel that housed the fundraiser and strolled on the wet pavement. June in Boston can be soggy and humid, and the city was being true to form. I touched my hair and felt my coif frizz.  Boston nights, romance, blog story

The old-fashioned city lights gave off a warm glow, and I felt marginally safer. George smiled while lightly holding my elbow as we crossed the street. “I have a feeling that you prefer large talk,” he noted as he led me toward a street corner, turned, and then opened a dark green door with a sign overhead: “Sullivan’s.”

“Sullivan’s what?” I wondered out loud as we entered a tavern seemingly lit only with candles on small round tables spread graciously apart from each other. A curved mahogany bar spanned the entire right side.

“Bruce Sullivan, at your service,” replied a white-haired gentleman as he led us to one of the round tables toward the back of the room. “Sullivan’s Respite – Sullivan’s Bar – Sullivan’s Comfort Food take your pick,” he added as George and I settled in.

beer, Boston pub, romance“I’ll take the comfort food and a pint from the tap,” George requested immediately. His eyes twinkled. “Bruce, meet my, um, new friend. New friend, meet my brother.”

I stood up, surprised and for some reason, relieved. “Mandy. Mandy Shepherd,” I said pulling my arm behind me as I remembered that shaking hands was no longer de rigueur. Sitting back down I added, “George and I have known each other for less than an hour. Do you vouch for him?” For some reason, I felt as if I could trust Bruce. I liked him instantly, and usually my instincts didn’t fool me.

Bruce pulled up a chair at the table as if to join us. Then he faced  me, his white mustache hovering over an almost beatific smile.

“George is simply the best man I know. Not only is he a minister; he’s holy. Not only has he earned a doctorate in philosophy, he’s a philosopher; not only is he my brother, he’s my best friend.” Bruce stopped to catch a breath: “And not only is he single, he’s a dedicated monogamist.”

Pixabay, dangling the line, romance in Boston

Hope I’ve “hooked” you with this fun romance.

I laughed out loud and turned to George. “No wonder you suggested this ‘café.’ Okay, I’m hooked. No reason to dangle me on the line. Now, what’s on tap?”

110 thoughts on “What Are the Chances?

  1. I’ll CHIME in: What a hook! And wherever did you find the cartoon? Well, maybe it inspired the story somehow.

    It is not lost on me that at least one of your characters is mature (old?), but you didn’t use either word, simply dropping the phrase “white mustache.”

    Storyteller extraordinaire, Pam!

    Liked by 2 people

    • My characters are never “Old,” Marian. Some are just more mature than others. 🙂 I found the cartoon on Pixabay, which is a wonderful site that allows users to download illustrations without citations. But in the WP description box, I always include the link. ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Love the last line. Your book arrived yesterday. In W’port for alumni weekend. Peter getting an award. I’ll send photos. Xo

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  3. I loved this!
    I have visited Boston, the visit was much too short! While there we visited a pub that served the best apple cider I’ve ever had! I hope you had a glass of that! Delicious…

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  4. Yay! I am so glad you decided to continue this story…
    And like Merril, I shall patiently wait for the next installment 😉
    And uh… could you send a George my way?

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I loved this story which reminded me of a humorous tale that my wife likes to tell. After her mom and dad divorced, her mom eventually began dating another man (Al). They were good together. He was quite the character, a good man with a big heart but an equally big mouth.🤣 He had many opinions about everything and wasn’t afraid of sharing those with people he didn’t know well. Once the two of them were at a dinner party, and he cornered some lady and began talking her ear off in his normal fashion. He wasn’t known for being politically correct. After he carried on his usual way, using some of the most colorful language, he finally paused to ask the woman, “So, what do you do?”

    Her reply was hysterical. “I’m a nun.” For once, Al was speechless.

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    • I do enjoy writing stories that include hooks and romance and a bit of suspense. Much fun to read as well as write. Thank you Miriam! PS. I finally got my new book Flashes of Life as an ebook for Kindle and tablet. Hooray!


      • Oh congratulations on having your new book as an eBook for Kinde, Pam. I downloaded the ePub of Flashes of Life, but it opens with Chrome extension automatically. When I shutdown the computer and turn on the next day, it disappeared and I had to download it again. I emailed Borgo last week to ask how I could keep the ePub in another Reader, they haven’t answered me.
        I have my books on Barnes and Noble and a couple other places. Amazon by far is more efficient and user friendly.

        I guess I must find time to read through your book so I don’t have to worry about download it again. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

    • We are all told over and over again to not go away with strangers. Mandy certainly lucked out in this case. I have a feeling she was mature enough and wise enough to have honed her intuition by now. 💙

      Liked by 3 people

    • Brothers can be quite loyal! I remember when I was single and my brother and his wife took me to a bar “to meet people,” but every time a man approached me, my big-armed, in-shape brother got in his face and said, “what’s your intention?” 🙂 It was funny….


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  8. Your phrase “…prefer large talk…” gave me pause, Pam. It makes perfect sense, yet is the first time I have heard this phrase. Trust and gut instincts are often reliable. This entire post made me smile. 😀Yes, a fun romance. Yes, you have me hooked.😀

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