Game Night is a Bad Idea

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Krissie parked the car on the left side of the street because the other side was filled. Glancing up at the brick building across the road, Krissie let out a whistle. The building wasn’t fancy like the other skyrises in the city, yet it wasn’t run down either.

It was the perfect modern place for her best friend, Dana.

Dana was more of a city person instead of a country gal like Krissie. Two months ago, Dana made the move from the rural area of town to the city.

Once Dana finally got settled in, she invited Krissie and a group of their friends over for a party.

Krissie grabbed the pink pastry box along with the bouquet of yellow tulips, Dana’s favorite flowers.

Stepping out into the warm air, Krissie glanced up at the sky. It was odd; the left side was filled with stars while the right took on a cloudy mist. This was the first time Krissie had seen something this peculiar.

She shrugged off the occurrence, then headed inside.

***

Krissie marveled at the interior of Dana’s apartment. The space looked bigger than Krissie’s cottage.

Dana kept the décor modern with the red couch, white chairs, and uniquely shaped sculptures. Yet, there was a flare of Dana’s old personality in the place. An old painting of Dana’s from high-school hung on the wall. It was of a puppy sitting in a pasture looking at a rainbow. Dana explained to the art teacher that the painting represented happy moments in tough times.

“I can see you’ve found the old painting.” Dana placed the yellow flowers in a crystal vase.

“I didn’t know you still had it.” Krissie sipped on the red wine in her glass.

“I’m never getting rid of it.” Dana set the vase on the coffee table, then entered the kitchen.

“You have a nice place here.”

“I’m glad you could come.” Dana opened the pastry box, then began plating the chocolate cupcakes. “I hate to say this, but I do miss the country.”

“Ever thought of moving back.”

Dana arched her eyebrows at the question. “As much as I miss it, I’m not parting with city living.”

“I couldn’t blame you. You’ve got a nice place, close to all the amenities of the town.”

“Cheers to that.” Dana raised her wine glass.

“So what’s on the agenda for tonight.”

“Jeanette, Mark, and Aubrey are coming over. I figured we’d chat, eat, then play games.”

“Whoa! Back up one moment.” Krissie held up her palm. “You want to have game night with Jeanette?”

“Yes.”

Krissie looked at Dana like she had lost her mind. Jeanette was one of their friends from school. Jeanette was a sweet girl, but she was competitive. That’s why nobody liked playing games with Jeanette.

“Dana, you do remember how Jeanette can be can’t you?”

“Yes, you don’t have to remind me.” Dana and the rest of the group were recovering from the last game night. They played penny poker and Jeanette freaked out when she lost the dollar pot to Aubrey. Then there was Charades night when Krissie couldn’t guess Jeanette’s interpretation of a dinosaur, which looked more like a chicken.

“This is going to be a bad idea.”

“We’ve had bad time in the past, but Jeanette promised she’d behave herself.”

Before Krissie had a chance to offer a rebuttal, the doorbell rang.

“They’re here.” Dana went to answer the door, while Krissie poured another glass of wine.

***

The game of choice that night was Monopoly. Thirty minutes into the game and everything was going smoothly. Jeanette was clam tonight, which shocked everybody. Krissie glanced a look at Dana as if to say she was right.

Maybe tonight would be perfect afterall.

“You’re turn, Mark.”

Mark rolled the dice, which turned up two fours. He moved the dog thimble to Boardwalk.

“Okay, Mark, Boardwalk is free, would you like to buy it?” Aubrey served as the banker of the game.

“Yes, I would.” Mark began counting the money, which caused Jeanette to sigh.

“What’s wrong?” Mark looked at Jeanette.

“Nothing.” Jeanette shrugged.

Krissie and Dana glanced at each other. Cue Jeanette’s meltdown in 3-2-1.

“I wanted to buy Boardwalk,” Jeanette wailed.

Krissie shot Dana “I told you so” glance. Game night was like a magnet that attracted Jeanette’s competitive side.

“Look, if you want it, take it.” Mark handed Jeanette the card.

“No, no. You’ve already paid for it,” Jeanette shot back.

“Jeanette to be fair, all the avenues are up for grabs. It’s a first come, first serve basis.” Aubrey always seemed to be stuck playing peacemaker during Jeanette’s tiffs.

“Everybody knows Boardwalk is the top avenue in Monopoly. That’s the one that earns you the most money.”

“Jeanette calm down, it’s just a game,” Mark had never seen Jeanette freak out this bad.

“Well, it’s stupid anyway.” Jeanette flipped over the board sending money, cards, and thimbles flying everywhere.

Dana pressed a hand to her forehead as Krissie consoled her.

“What else can go wrong tonight?” Dana whispered.

A bolt of lightning streaked across the sky followed by a loud clap of thunder, startling the group. A second later the power went out.

“Okay, it’s official,” Dana spoke up. “Game night is over.”

***

Rain pounded on the windows as Krissie, decked out in a pair of Dana’s pajamas curled up on the couch. Mark, Aubrey, and Jeanette left before the storm got too bad. Krissie stayed behind to help Dana tidy up. She was planning on driving home, yet Dana insisted she stay the night.

After seeing how hard the rain was coming down, Krissie didn’t argue with her friend. It’d be a mess driving home at night in this weather, especially with how slick the bridge could get. Krissie heard stories about people wrecking on the bridge during bad weather and she didn’t want to take any chances.

Dana gave Krissie pajamas, then went to fix the guest room for her to sleep in.

“Everything should be all set.” Dana returned to the living room.

“Thanks. I appreciate you letting me stay.”

“Anything for my dear friend.” Dana gave her a side hug. “You’re a wise person, Krissie. I should’ve listened to you.”

“About what?”

“Game night.” Dana still cringed at Jeanette’s outburst. “From now on, let’s skip games and stick with dinner.”

“Sounds like a plan to me.”

 

 

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