“Draw four!” Sara screamed as she slammed down the colorful Uno card that made her opponent moan and lean back in his chair.
“Ooooh, man!” Jose huffed as he leaned over the backpack roll they made into a makeshift table in between the rows of seats to pick his cards.
“This is the worst thing you would’ve done to me. I have like 20 cards already!” he exclaimed.
“Just hush up and pick your cards,” said Tony. “This game is going to last us through our delay with the way we’re playing.” Tony threw down a green two.
“Really, Tony? Ughh…” said Melissa as she started picking from the pile.
This is the best situation they could find themselves in after four hours of waiting for their flight.
“My legs are falling asleep,” said Sara. “I can’t sit on my backpack anymore. Does anyone want anything? I’m walking down that way toward the bathroom.”
They all shook their heads. Tony put his cards together in his hands after having all 15 fanned out. “I’m going to see if they have any updates at the desk,” he said as he stood up and he put his cards down on the ground in front of them, face up.
“Hey, man! I just saw your cards! I thought we were going to keep playing! I know you have like 10 blue cards, now,” said Jose, sorely disappointed. It was his idea to play Uno.
“Chill out, Jose. I’m tired of playing already, we’ve been playing for like 3 hours.”
“I was so close to winning!” Melissa said as she put down a stack of cards.
Tony walked over to the desk to talk to the flight attendants. “Are there any updates to our flight? We’ve been waiting for quite some time,” he said as she started at him blankly.
“We will update everyone when we have information, sir,” she said matter-of-factually. She looked away from him and pretended to be busy. He rolled his eyes and turned around to see a tall, strikingly handsome young man talking to Melissa.
A little pang of uneasiness bubbled up in his stomach and the middle of his palms tingled as they started to sweat. He looked around for Jose. He needed someone to talk to to get his mind of off what Melissa might be thinking about this guy. She laughed. That’s all it took.
He looked down and walked toward the bathroom.
Sara was in the bathroom washing her hands and looked over to see a woman yelling at her little girl. “Stop crying!” said the woman. “You’re embarrassing me…” She grabbed the little girl hard and was on the verge of shaking her. The child whimpered and cried silently, mouth open and frowning, tears rolling down her cheeks, her nose and eyes red from rubbing them.
Melissa laughed. Who was this guy, she thought. He just came out of nowhere and walked directly over to her. She hadn’t noticed him before he was standing five feet in front of her, as she was wondering what she could have done to win the stupid Uno game.
He was good looking, tall and a doctor heading back home from doing pro-bono work in Guatemala. He was tan and was asking what she was doing and where home was. She smiled, giggled and blushed.
“Dude, where have you been? Check out what I found!” Jose grabbed Tony by the arm and showed him the newest edition of Game Informer. “I didn’t know they had this here!”
Tony was still distraught. He could see that Melissa was still talking to the tall guy. “Yeah, cool, dude,” he said to Jose. Jose looked up at Tony, his faced scrunched up in confusion.
“You all right dude?” he asked Tony.
“Yeah, man,” he said as he glanced over to Melissa again. “Let me see what you’re looking at there.”
“Dude. Dude…,” said Jose. “You totally dig Melissa, don’t you? I knew it! I totally called that!”
“Nah, dude,” replied Tony. “She’s a cool girl and all but I don’t know if I can be with her like that…”
“But you totally want to mack it to her, dude!” Jose was getting loud. “Why don’t you ask her out or something, man?” Tony put the magazine down and turned his body completely toward Melissa and the young doctor.
“I’ll get over it,” he said definitively, “I mean, this is just one guy, right? And he’s a stranger. What’s going to happen?”
Sara walked out of the bathroom and couldn’t take her eyes off of the mom and her little girl she just scolded. Now she was pulling her as she walked, the baby still crying her eyes out. Sara knew the feeling. Why couldn’t the mom just stop and nurse her a bit to get her to calm down? She wondered what the little girl wanted.
The intercom went on. “Passengers for flight 1434 to Houston, Texas your plane has arrived. You will be boarding at gate B5 in approximately 30 minutes.”
The friends all looked at each other and met where their backpacks sat, waiting for them. “Yes! We’re going home!” screamed Jose.
“Thank God,” said Melissa and Tony in unison.
“Well, it was great meeting you,” Melissa said to the doctor. “Here’s my email address.” She handed him a folded up sheet of paper and smiled as she walked around him to pick up her bags.
“Who was that, Meli?” asked Sara.
“I’ll tell you on the plane. We have a few hours to chat,” she responded. Jose stepped on Tony’s food and Tony shot daggers at him.
“Let’s go,” said Tony. And they all walked down the terminal to the gate.