doug draime | lily and bob

Lily And Bob

Bob was back
in the corner

by the juke box, his
shotgun propped
up against the
machine. No one
had noticed him
coming in the back-

door. Lily was serving
some rowdies at the
front table. I’d been
watching the Reds kick
the shit outta the
Cubs on the black
& white at the
end of the bar.
And if I hadn’t
turned when Jerry
asked for another beer,
I wouldn’t have
noticed Bob sitting
there either.
I walked over
and drew Jerry

a draft. Bob was
craning his neck around
trying to get a good
look at Lily. I sat the draft
in front of Jerry
and reached under
the counter for the
.357, and stuck it

under my shirt, and
started walking back
to the table.
Bob spotted me coming
and moved his
shotgun, laying
it across the
table, with 2 fingers
resting on the trigger.
He yelled at me,
“This is done of
your concern, Doug.
I just came to

get Lily. Go back
behind the bar

and tend to business.”
Lily was
right behind me by
then and I knew
she could see the

bulge of the gun.
“Bob, you need
to take your
fingers off the trigger
and sit the fucking
shotgun back against
the juke box.
And I need you

to do that, now, OK?”
Bob just stared
at me, trying to
stare me down.

The place grew
as still as a rock.
“I don’t want
any shit with
you, Doug. I
came to get Lily,
like I said.”
I could hear
Lily starting to
cry behind me.
“You come in here
with a shotgun
and you don’t want
any trouble? I

think you’re
a little confused,
man. You need to call it a
night, go home and
sleep if off.”

He was just tapping his
fingers on the stock of

the shotgun
near the trigger
and staring at me.
I could feel
Lily moving, as she
touched my
shoulder and stepped
out in front
of me.
She took a couple
steps toward
the table,
haltingly, gently
reaching out
her hand.
“Bob, honey, I’ll
leave with you
but you have
to stop this

before someone
gets killed. We

can work
this out, baby.
You don’t
want anybody
to get hurt, Bob.
I know
you don’t.”
Locked on mine,
Bob’s eyes moved
slowly away
to Lily’s,
his whole
body softening.
He took his hand
off the
shotgun and stood up,
his eyes
filling with tears.
Not another word
was spoken,

as Bob
began to sob.
Lily had his hand and was
leading him
out the back door.
Bob hunched over
crying a little,
like a kid caught
When I heard
his old pickup start,
I walked over
and picked-up the
shotgun, broke it open,
and took
the shells out,
put them in my pocket.
Walking back
up to the bar
with the unloaded
weapon, some wise ass played
Lovesick Blues, by

Hank Williams,
and the whole bar burst out
with a loud uproar
of laughter.

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