Flash Fiction: The Petit Coup d’état with a scoop of Mint Chip ice cream on the side

Credit: The Sunflower (1943) Georges Braque

by LJ Frank

We met at the café of a quaint bookshop. It was an unusually warm day in the middle of winter as we sat down at a patio table with a vase of life-like sunflowers in the center. The afternoon sun dipped behind some passing clouds as we adjusted our chairs. We looked at each other across the table in quiet and shook our heads.

She lifted her hands palms face up. “What do you think…about the…?”

“The…?” I asked.

“I think you know what I’m referring to.”

“You mean what’s happening abroad in countries around the world or here with the far-right legislators sitting in the House and Senate who believe in the inerrancy of their egregious cause and cult leader? Ambition and money?”  

“The Mad Hatter Party? Om must be careful with what one imbibes.”

“Let’s not forget the Council for Nationalization Protection.”

“Ambiguous translations encourage curiosity.” She noted.

 “Privilege relishes disinformation for the sake of control.”

“And the Federalists?” She asked.

“Narcissism is an infectious personality disorder.”

“Which reminds me. Did you see that existential film produced by that French Ukrainian woman?” 

“The woman with the radiant, long red hair and cobalt blue eyes?” I asked.

“She was filming someplace in Eastern Europe under a pseudonym.”

“From what I understand…”

“Did you hear about the title of the film?”


“Three Letters in the Alphabet.”

“Which ones.”

“That’s the name of it.”

“Sounds like an international espionage affair from the 18th century.”

“That which is cultivated eventually shall be reaped.” She observed as a light wind blew several strands of her long red hair across her face.

“Here comes the waiter.”

“Would either of you be interested in today’s special – the Petit Coup d’état with a scoop of Mint Chip ice cream on the side?”