Flash Fiction: Intermission

Vincent Van Gogh Sun Flowers. (1889) Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam

by LJ Frank

The desire was to distance ourselves from the crowd. To breathe in fresh country air and drink clean well water. And to immerse our bodies and minds in a natural setting. We found a location. A charming early 1900’s English stone cottage with oak trim, an arched wormy chestnut oak front door, and a grey slate roof. It was located near a small deep blue lake surrounded by majestic pines and spruces. Hardwood floors and leaded glass windows added to the ambience. A clay flower vase filled with sun flowers was situated on a rectangular oak table near a window overlooking a lush garden. The Harpsichord Concertos of JS Bach emanated thoughout the dwelling.

We smiled at each other carrying our respective mugs of coffee and walking into the dining area from the kitchen and quietly sitting on the old wood chairs at the table.

With a sigh my partner asked, “Was it what you expected or hoped for last night and this morning?”

“It?”

“You’re cute. Though I cherish ambiguity, especially in the morning. It’s a positive beginning to the day. I enjoy uncertainty and surprises.”

“Good. I like the fragrance of a morning in the woods and immersing oneself in the moment. So, let’s be honest with each other.”

“Oh? Then you know about the affair.”

“What affair?”

“Well, your spouse and me, if we are going to be totally honest.”

“My spouse and you?”

“It was quite seductive…well you should know. I thought I saw you peek through the door. I know you’re a voyeur.”

“I’m confused. How could I…?”

“I’m sorry…I lose the sense of perspective when I am with…”

“Wait! Why are you apologizing? I’m not married.”

“What do you mean, not married? Then who am I having an affair with?”

I then removed my blue contact lens and blonde wig and unbuttoned my shirt to reveal my left breast.

“What? I don’t understand. you’re a brunette with dark brown eyes…and I recognize the rose tattoo on your breast…How could you…unless you used a…”

“I thought you would have guessed by now.”

How could I have? It was dark.”

“My work.”

“Your work?”

“Let’s just say it’s  now the Intermission. I’m an actor. And this is just the final scene in the Second Act.”

“Final scene of the Second Act? Good grief! Is there a Third Act?”

“Two Act plays are rare.”

“Well then…I should tell you. Your performance was great. And to think it’s only the Intermission.”

“What?”

“I’m also an actor…you mean you didn’t know? Now to begin the first scene in the Third Act.” She then removed her mask to reveal who she really was.