“Wow. You’re more depressed than I thought,” he said. “Watching Eloise at Christmastime, in August.”
“It makes me happy. Or as happy as anyone can be at the moment.”
“I told you to stop watching the news. It’s making everyone depressed.”
“I stopped this morning. I don’t care anymore. It’s too insane and makes me want to…”
“Start screaming? Break the TV? Tear at your hair?”
“Yes, yes and yes,” she sighed.
“Better not too think about it. There’s noting anyone can do. I think that’s obvious, since no one is doing anything about what’s happening.”
She nodded. “Do you want me to start the movie over?”
“How many times in a row have you watched it?”
“Sure, start it over and pass the bowl of chocolate chips.”
“How can life have come to this?”
“No one was paying attention,” he said.
She shoved a handful of chips into her mouth, then bit into a cookie. “Mffhussfffh?”
“I’m sorry, could you please repeat that,” he laughed. “And no matter how much chocolate you eat, it won’t make things better. You know that, don’t you?”
“I do,” she said, snuggling up to him. “But chocolate, cats, books and Eloise are what stop me from jumping off the top of a building. Well, and you, of course.”
“She’s a fabulous actress. Some kids just have so much talent,” he said, watching Eloise dance around.
“I love her. She’s loud, just crazy enough and she does exactly what she wants to do and she doesn’t care what anyone else thinks.”
“You mean she’s just like you,” he laughed.
“Maybe,” she said. “Eloise, at least in this movie, just makes sense. Life would be a lot easier for all the other characters, if they would just listen to her and get on with it.”
“Then there wouldn’t BE a movie,” he said, grabbing more chocolate chips. “Cookies, please.”
She passed him the bag of cookies. “How long can we live this way?”
“No one knows,” he said. “This whole thing is one huge experiment and I think we’re failing miserably.”
“This is the new normal and it doesn’t fit. People are squiggling and trying to force themselves into a life that’s too small. Eloise’s real name is Sofia.”
“Okay,” he grinned. “How many bags of chips are in this bowl?”
“Six large bags, not those little bags.”
He started laughing.
“I have two more bags in the freezer.”
“I think this might be enough.”
“There’s always a mean woman and a bad guy in films. Have you notice that?” she asked, stretching.
“It’s called a plot.”
“I never like the irritating people in movies, or on tv or in books. I fast forward through their parts. I won’t give them air time, or let them into my life. I just watch the parts I like. I feel as if they know I’m cutting them out, and it makes me feel good to do it. Like in MIDNIGHT IN PARIS. I always cut the horrid pedantic guy out. He never gets to say a single word.”
“He’s just an actor.”
“Don’t care. I won’t let those people in. Sometimes I skip the pages in a book where the icky people are talking.”
He kissed her nose. “Wanna get married?”
“I think it’s time.”
“Yeah. Just the two of us.”
“You don’t think you can do better than me?” she asked, turning the cookie bag upside down. “All gone.”
“Better than you?” he said. “There isn’t anyone better than you.”
“You’re just saying that because of the spell I put on you when we met.”
She nodded and sprawled across his lap. “I’m magic,” she snickered, wiggling her fingers.
“I like this part,” he said, looking at the TV.
“I love you. I want to marry you. I want to be with you for the rest of my life, however short that may be, considering the state of the world.”
“I love you too, so let’s do it and not tell anyone until afterward,” she said.
“Would you like to live forever?” she asked.
“Probably not,” he said. “Why? Do you know any vampires who would be willing to change us?”
“Not really. And I’d miss the sun too much to go all vamp. Oh, Eloise is going to slam the door and the Christmas decorations are going to fall down again.”
“So this weekend?” he asked.
“Yes. I’m keeping my name, but you can change yours to mine, if you like.”
“I’ll think about it,” he laughed.
“Hey, woman have been changing their names forever. Not funny.”
“What about werewolves? They live for a long time, the sun doesn’t bother them, and they can run fast.”
“That is better,” she said. “It’s something to consider, especially since I don’t like to look pale.”
“You think fuzzy is better?”
“Definitely,” she said, throwing the crumpled cookie bag at the TV. “How can she be willing to say no to the guy she loves, and yes to the creepy guy her father likes? I mean where’s her backbone and brain? She’s so…wishy washy and weak. She can’t even speak above a whisper and she looks so pathetic. And who dyes their poodle blue?”
“It’s a movie.,” he said. “It’s not real.”
“It’s real for a lot of women.”
“You’re right,” he said. “Should we just watch the film until it’s over?”
“Okay,” she said. “But kiss me first, since you have to taste like semi-sweet chocolate.”
“If I do that, we won’t be watching the movie at all.”
“I’m willing to risk it,” she said, pulling him toward her.
He pressed pause and let her do whatever she liked.