Flash Fiction: Jeremy & Luis

Jeremy plodded along the narrow track of sidewalk, his eyes guiding each step. A “D”? he thought. What’s going to happen to my scholarships? What will I tell mom and dad?

“Change?” a voice scratched.

“Huh?”

“Change?”

Jeremy’s eyes looked up to study a homeless man with a beard like a Brillo pad after being used to scrub off dried blood.

“I-I’m sorry. I don’t have any change.”

The man dragged his legs into his chest, arms curled around them, body shuddering. He looks like an armadillo. Jeremy winced at the familiar thought of home.

“I have a granola bar if you’re hungry.”

“Nah, man. Not the kinda hungry I’m talking ‘bout.”

“I don’t…what do you want? I have a credit card I can buy you something with.”

“Kid, you can’t use a credit card to buy what I want.”

“Well, what about some coffee then? There is coffee shop nearby.”

“Not today.”

Jeremy furrowed his brow. What does he want?

“How about tomorrow then? I walk home past here after classes.”

“I’m not the kinda guy you wanna hang around, kid. I’d sell you for a bump in a second.”

“You get hungry sometimes, though. Don’t you? I’ll come back tomorrow and we can go to the McDonald’s on Fourth.”

The man rolled his eyes. “Yeah. Whatever you say, kid.”

“Alright. I’ll see you tomorrow then… Oh, what’s your name by the way?”

“It’s Luis.”

“See you tomorrow then, Luis.”

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