Music Box Dreamer

The young soldier felt anger growing in his belly and when he spoke his words were sharp and held a little bit of his feelings. “Do you always laugh at people that do things for you.”   Girlish laughter rang out in the dark night. She mumbled, “Sorry,” the half smoked cigarette fell on to the porch floor. Its bright spark was ground under a small brown shoe.   O’Quinn frowned, “You don’t look sorry but I suppose I shouldn’t expect an apology form a child like you anyway.” Before Annie had a chance for a comeback he added. “I just met this child named Annie/ Who loves to play the Pianee/ Poor thing always frowns, When people tell here to sit down/ Because she’s blocking their view with her fanny.”   This was the last straw as far as Ann Foster was concerned. She shouted, “How rude,” turned on her heels and stomped away. She turned back before she reached the open door, “Did you ever go into an Irishman’s shanty and see your uncle dressed up like your aunty.”   The young soldier clenched both fists as an angry red stain washed across his face, he gritted his teeth, “I’ll have you know.” He paused until just the right words came to his mind. He growled, “I didn’t grow up in a shanty. If you must know I lived in a nice four room apartment when I was young. Of course hoity toity rich girls like yourself thinks all Irish are illiterate, unwashed and uncouth. I know all about your kind.”   Fire flashed out of two big sapphire eyes as she stormed back to where he was standing. “Just what do you think you know about girls like me, you, you big.” Annie didn’t want to swear, didn’t want to give into her rage but this ugly soldier was asking for it. “You big lunk head you.” she wanted to grab hold of his broad shoulders and shake the stuffing out of him.”   The two young people glared at each other for several minutes without speaking. Tommy broke the gaze first. He mumbled, “Sorry child if I up set you.”   A small clenched fist thudded hard into his left shoulder. His mouth dropped open and his grey eyes grew large. He reached out with both hands to grab and shake some respect into her.     Before his big paws settled onto soft, yielding flesh, laughter poured out of his open mouth. He laughed so hard that tears formed in his eyes wetting the stubble of his day old beard as they rolled down his cheeks. He laughed so hard that he had to clutch onto the shaking girl to keep from falling.   It took him a while to regain his composure but when he did a big warm smile flashed across his face. “I’m sorry for being so rude. I’m usually not this way, not at all. It’s just, well never mind.”   To Annie he no longer looked homily. Instead he was the cutest young man she had ever seen in her life. The anger that had been piling up until it was almost a mountain, faded faster than the morning dew. Her heart thudded against her chest, against the soft, thin fabric of her dress. A smile that would light up the darkest night, a smile that would melt an ice berg turned two perfect rosebud lips upwards. “I’m sorry two about, well you did start it by saying I have a big fanny. Is my bottom really that big that it will block peoples view?”   Her directness, her smile and her intoxicating perfume carried on the breath of the wind completely fluster the young man. His tongue tied its self into a dozen knots. At least that’s what it seemed like, “Uu, I, I,I.” After a minute of stumbling and stuttering his answer he regained a bit of self-possession. “I never saw much of your bottom but from what I did see I think it is the loveliest in the whole world.”   She gazed long into his eyes searching for a hint of deceit, for a shadow that he was being rude once more. There was only truth and honesty within them. She got out a low sir before bursting out into a gale of giggles. She leaned against him and clutched his shoulder.   Without even realizing it Tommy put both arms around the slender, soft frame of the beautiful girl and held her close. It took a while for the giggles to fade away into the darkness but at last they did.   A muffled, “Please unhand me sir,” brought the soldier back to his senses.   He dropped his long arms back to his sides. A bit of red brightened up his face, his mumbled, “Sorry,” was heartfelt and honest. “I’m so sorry for being so rude. Can we please start over again and be friends. I don’t want to fight with a pretty girl one on of my last few nights in Canada.”   A soft, “I don’t want to fight either,” and another smile sent his heart racing once more.   She curtsied and stepped closer to him. One slender arm slid around his waist. A slender hand went up behind his short red hair and pulled his head down. Four lips opened a little. Two soft lips and two lips roughened by summer sun and winter winds touched. Two young bodies pressed tight against each other, clung to each other with all of their might.   A loud, shrill, “Ann Foster, where are you Ann Foster,”  floating out of  the half open window intruded into their moment of rapture.   Annie was the first to unlock lips. She caressed the back of his neck several time before removing her soft hand.   A heavy sigh escaped from Tommy as he dropped his arms back at his sides.   Ann was the first one to speak and there was a hint of panic in her seductive, bedroom voice. “Oh heavens it’s mother. Let’s go around the corner so she won’t see.”   Tommy started feeling angry again and his voice was loud when he spoke, “Are you ashamed of me because I’m Irish.”   “I could never be ashamed of you,” two large tear drops rolled out of the corner of her eyes and down her cheeks. “I love you. I love you with all my heart, with all my soul, with my very life.”   The young man forced his growing anger back where it belonged. “What is it then?”   Annie wiped the tears off of her chin, “It’s just that mother thinks anyone not in our social circle is beneath her dignity. I don’t feel that way at all, never have. I’m too happy now for an angry confrontation. It, it would just spoil everything.   The two new lovers made their way off of the step and around the corner of the building, the strains of the Vienna Waltz followed behind them.   Tommy’s white teeth flashed in the darkness, “May I have this dance Madam?”


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