The Digits.

So, Eddie had a girlfriend. He never talked about her, but I had put the clues together at left it at that.

One Sunday night, I joined a few of my sorority sisters and their boyfriends at this bar that overlooked a swamp. It was at the end of a short pier, and basically stood as a metal shack. They served cheap beer by the pitcher, and handed out buckets of peanuts.

The place was packed with people, some wearing washboards, ready to make their own music. Others were just there to dance.

We stayed, drank too much, and danced the night away. Looking back, it was probably the truest Louisianan experience I’ve ever had, and one of the best times in my life.

The next afternoon, I had to work with Eddie.

He was telling me about this bar that overlooked a swamp and was in the middle of nowhere.

“No way! I was there last night,” I said.

“Really? How was it?”

“So much fun,” I said.

“Cool. Maybe we could go sometime,” he said. “Let me get your number.”

I gave him my number as I walked out the door, figuring he probably already had it since he was my manager.

Back at A&F, I was still working with Austin. He was talking to other girls, but I didn’t pay much attention—I was hooked on Eddie. The next time we worked together, he asked me if I wanted to pick us up some lunch, since he couldn’t leave the store. I said I would, took his money, and was on my way.

On the short trip back to the store, it started to rain, as in, a monsoon.

When I walked into the store, I was soaking wet, and miserable.

“I sure hope you’re happy,” I said, handing over the bag of fried chicken.

“I’m sorry,” he said. We were standing in the stock room, so he grabbed a red and cream striped robe from the metal shelves and put it around my shoulders.

We sat in the back and ate the chicken, talking some too. When the shift was over, he asked me if I wanted to grab a beer. And so, we did.

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