“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I, I took the one less traveled by…”
“It’s a poem by Rober…. Nevermind. This is not an easy choice. Just give me a minute to think.”
Michael paced the length of the living room, drumming his fingers against each other.
“Dude, you’re not seriously thinking of picking him are you?”
Every bit of Max’s 6’ 3” frame vibrated with the impatience of a 5-year-old as he sat on the couch, trying to cover the Kool-Aid stain he had created two months ago. Max’s self control had never been strong, but he harnessed every bit he had trying to sit still. Unfortunately, even at his best he could only control half of himself. While his hands were tucked under crossed arms, his knees bounced out of control. He threw his head to one side, casting the mop of brown hair out of blue eyes that begged to be the chosen one.
Over the past six months, Michael’s roommates had progressed from getting on each other’s nerves to full-fledged war. When Max found that all the deodorant in the house had disappeared right before his first date with Cassie, he programmed the TV so that it would only play the original Ghost Busters movie for two weeks straight. Michael hated being forced to choose between the two, but he could not take it anymore.
“Look Max, I know that whatever I decide, it’s gonna suck for someone, but I am sick of being in the middle of your little war and there is only one room besides mine. Now shut up and let me think.”
Max continued to plead like a puppy begging for a treat.
“You won’t be able to play Call of Duty with him.”
“I also won’t find his boxers in the kitchen sink.”
Michael never missed a stride as he shot Max a look intended to convince him that talking was not in his best interest at this time, or for that matter, ever.
Max could only fight his instincts for so long before bursting out with another attempt to tip the scales in his favor.
“He won’t ever bring any hot girls over.”
“Dude. Neither will you.”
“Bro! That was cold. Low blow dude.”
“Will you just let me think?”
Max’s energy had been contained for too long and he bounded off the couch to match Michael’s pacing. He desperately searched for anything that might help him win.
“We’ve had some great times together. We have a Super Bowl tradition.”
“He and I have a Halloween tradition.”
Michael stopped and turned to look at his friend in one motion. Max’s ears perked up, sensing that this could be the moment that decided everything.
“Look man, here’s the deal. You both are great in your own ways, but if all you’re gonna do is fight I can only have one of you here. I’m sorry dude, but I’m choosing him.”
Max threw his arms wildly in the air as he screamed, “ARE YOU SERIOUS?”
“It’s nothing personal. We can still hang out together sometimes. It’s just that times are tight right now and…”
“But he’s a ghost!”
“Yeah, but he’s a ghost who pays his rent.”
Copyright © 2011 Adam Drake