Tasha stood outside, enduring the chilly nip of the late December air, right by the coffee vendor. At any moment, slightly after a quarter til 8 am, Carter would walk out of the WKXB building to grab his third dose of caffeine. He would need the stimulate coffee offers to stay alert through the last haul of the morning show s-stream. Usually, coffee runs are for production assistants and interns, but Carter likes to take the 10 minute break to get coffee himself. It’s the only 10 minutes during the show he can’t get blamed for messing up if it goes terribly awry.
From 7:44 am to 7:54 am, the IT Department and the Web Design Team are in charge. They run a 10 minute interactive ad that now-viewers engage with to win free product, VIP tours of the studio, and meet-and-greet opportunities with the TV Personalities featured on the morning show.
Sure enough, the front doors slid open and bright-eyed Carter stepped through in his T-shirt and jeans. Mindful of the partial snow stuck on the ground, an unwrapped scarf dangled from his neck. He darted across the salted sidewalk, with his hands kept warm tucked under his armpits.
The long line of customers presented no challenge to him. Carter whisked past everyone to the front. At the window, Ky, had his triple chocolate, caramel, macchiato already fixed for him in a to-go cup. Through the sip hole, a whip of steam visibly fumed from the cup.
He reached out with his right hand to collect his cup, and when his hand crossed the threshold of the window sill, this chip in his hand got scanned, triggered by a motion sensor, that charged WXKB for the coffee. As he turned to run back inside the sight of Tasha made him halt in place.
Coyly, he smiled, and said, “Hello Tash.”
A gust of relief hit her heart and she finally exhaled the deep breath she seemingly held forever.
“You didn’t have to stand out here to catch my attention. You know you’re welcomed to be my visitor for the morning.”
She may be welcomed to visit him, but not too many people in that building wanted to see her face again after nearly causing the station bankruptcy and nearly costing every employee their job. Okay… bankruptcy probably never would have happened, but the station had to make a lot of cuts after the lawsuit Tasha caused with one controversial story… that couldn’t be proven… and for once the public cared… And apparently the person behind the hard-hitting story cared too. One of those awful cases where the person was guilty as the story spun, but the sources were fake, making the news fake, killing Tasha’s whole career.
“I choose to live… not die… Thank you very much!”
“It’s good to see you. Running in to you at that Thanksgiving game made me pretty grateful later that night…”
Tasha blushed understanding the reference. Then she remembered why she was there. Rubbing the back of her neck, trying to squeeze some of the tension she held there out, she looked into his grey eyes. A breeze swooshed by making his black wavy bangs dangle in front of his eyes.
Quickly, his crooked smiled disappeared in his confused countenance. Without hesitation he took Tasha by the shoulder and led her further away from the line. He looked at the neon green, real-time tattooed watch he had inked on his wrist.
“If I had time I’d go into detail about this, but you must be mistaken. I can’t be the father…”
Tasha wasn’t looking for a father to a baby. She was looking for a co-signer to a procedure.
“I’m terminating the pregnancy. I need you-,”
“I’d like to help, but my medical file clearly has on record I’m sterile. Even if we found a place that took my signature without running a full medical-screening, if the truth ever came out, we’d both get in trouble with the law.”
Nervously, seeing the time, he cringed, “I’d talk longer but you sprung this on me at the worst time. You know my hangouts. When you get this all sorted out, let’s share another great night.”
He sipped a swig of his fancy coffee and then darted back inside.
For a second… Tasha couldn’t believe what Carter just said. She was ready to chase him down and make a big scene, because before she got there this morning, she knew he was the only guy she’d been with for a while… Then she remembered the Saturday after Thanksgiving… But this was no problem… This was better now.
There was no possible way she could reach that guy. They never exchanged numbers, talked about where they worked, or where to link up on social media. They met at a club, talked about music, food, and movies and hooked up in his car. What a relief?
Tasha headed for the subway when her phone beeped with a social media notification. She got a new follower on Squeak, JKingNow, followed by an instant message from that new follower.
The message read: This is Kingston, do you remember me from last month?
Great… now Tasha needs a co-signature again. Darn Wayd v. Rowe, for giving fathers equal rights with mothers. If a woman knows who the father of her baby is, and is able to contact him, in order to get an abortion, he must co-sign agreeing to the procedure. If he contests the abortion, they must go to court to determine if the woman holds the rights to her body and the procedure is carried out or if the father’s rights stay intact and the woman has to carry until the fetus can be viable outside the womb.
TO BE CONTINUED…