The Cracked Mug By D.I. Jolly

There was just something about the barmaid at The Cracked Mug that made Bob’s heart race and his mind wander.

At a glance you wouldn’t say she was anything special, but she was, she really, really was. Her personality lit up the bar, it stoked the fires, her smile was an epic guitar solo, and you knew you had walked into her domain from the moment you stepped through the door. It drove Bob crazy, and, he was pretty sure she knew it. Not just because he blushed crimson every time she smiled, but because how could she not?

She radiated confidence and it was sexier than any body part or hair colour could ever be. She did also have great tits though. But that didn’t matter because she had it where it counted, which, in Bob’s humble opinion, was everywhere.

The only problem was, while she was the kind of confident usually reserved for movie stars and kings, he was not, and although he’d been drinking in that bar for over six months, he’d never actually worked up the courage to properly talk to her.

It didn’t matter what the rest of his life was like, when he saw her, it was high-school all over again. She was the prom queen, and he was the nerd. She owned every room she walked into, and he owned every version of the D&D Dungeon Masters Guide.

On the one hand, he thought she would be the kind of woman he would want to marry. She would brighten his every day for the rest of his life. Their kids would be smart and confident, and his life would be enriched because she was in it. On the other hand, he really just wanted to fuck her. The idea of her naked on his bed with her legs open, shrank his trousers to the point where he thought they might split, or at least get horribly stained.

And it made him so distracted, that his friends had to wave their hands in front of his face to bring him back to the conversation.

“Bob? Hello, I’m talking to you.”

“You what? What, oh, sorry, what?”

Rebecca rolled her eyes, and felt pretty sure that she knew where his mind had been and that she didn’t want to think about it. Because she both loved Bob and hated the barmaid.

“I said, it doesn’t matter how strong Superman is, even in the crossover universes, unless he’s worthy, he can’t lift Thor’s hammer. And then asked if you would please, back me up?”

Bob looked at her, and then at their friend Francis.

“Really, again? We’re talking about this again? What’s changed since last time?”

Francis took a sip of his cola and frowned.

“What’s changed is nothing. You’re both still wrong about it. Superman 100% would be strong enough to lift it.”

Bob looked at Rebecca who shrugged and pointed at Francis as if to say, see?!?

“That’s a highly subjective statement, I mean, for a start which universe are we even talking about here, because sure, some versions of Superman would be able to lift it, but not because he’s strong but because he’s worthy, otherwise it’s always a no.”

“But just hear me out…”

“No! Not again, you keep trying to make this argument happen, but the rules clearly say only the worthy can lift it, that means, only the worthy can lift it. Case closed.”

“Yes but…”

Bob closed his eyes, and pulled out a small wad of toilet paper to wipe his nose while inside his head, the frustration of having the same conversation for the fifteenth time, joined with the frustration of never being able to work up the courage to talk to the barmaid. He then added a dash of alcohol and just a hint of ‘I really fucking hate Francis and wish he wasn’t part of my friend group’, to make one bright flash of extra strength asshole energy.

“But nothing, you blithering idiot. That’s not how it works, and it doesn’t matter what you say, or what you want to believe, it’s not how it works. So just, shut up, just shut the fuck up. No one cares. Save us the time and your own breath. Fuck. Why do we have to have this stupid conversation with you every time? Dickhead.”

Bob let out a long sigh and realised what he’d just said and done and turned to look at Rebecca who had spontaneously fallen out of love with him, and then at Francis who blushed and looked like he might cry.

“That seemed a bit harsh, what are you guys talking about?”

Bob turned quickly to look directly into the barmaid’s boobs, then panicked and look up at her face.

“Uummm… if an unworthy Superman would be strong enough to lift Thor’s hammer. But it’s not really a discussion because he absolutely wouldn’t be able to. It’s not about strength of muscles but strength of character. Like his personality and stuff.”

She stared down at him for a moment then smiled.

“Ok.” A few more moments passed in silence as Bob tried very hard to not notice that her boobs were still right there.

“But you should apologise to your friend, because that’s not really a nice way to talk to people. Even if you disagree, or feel the point has already been made, everyone will have a better time if we accept people’s blessings and their faults. And why are we here if not to have a good time with our friends?”

Her smile brightened for a second and then her boobs were gone, along with the rest of her. Bob stared at the empty space for a moment then at nothing in the direction of Rebecca, and then finally at Francis.

“Gee man, I’m, I am actually sorry. I didn’t mean it like that. Or to come out like that. That was super unjustified and really not cool of me, and I’m really sorry.”

“Yeah, thanks Bob, and I’m sorry too, I didn’t realise how often I bring it up but it always gets so dismissed I never feel like I get to really give my side of things. It’s frustrating, you know?”

Bob reached out a friendly hand and patted Francis on the shoulder.

“That’s because your argument is stupid.”

Francis took a moment to rally his courage and said.

“Go fuck yourself Bob.”

The two men laughed at themselves and each other while Rebecca breathed out a long held in breath and let herself fall back in love with Bob, and maybe even a little bit with the barmaid. Which was a new experience for her.

They ordered another round, Bob let himself realise that he’d actually had a small but real conversation with the barmaid, while Francis and Rebecca switched the conversation over to the much safer topic of why Batman Arkham Asylum was so good, and the night fell back into it’s usual groves until they all went home.

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