Sweeny's Pharmacy

Sweeny's Pharmacy

A Story by richieb
"

An excerpt from a novel titled "The Apple Thrower". A coming of age story about a fatherless teenage boy in the !930's in rural Missouri.

"
      On the first Saturday after school had let out for the summer, I walked into town for something to do. The mile walk from my home left me dry and thirsty so I headed to Sweeny's Pharmacy for a coke.
         As soon as I entered the drug store I saw Lana and two of her girlfriends, Jenny and Louise, sitting in a booth sipping on sodas.

         My chest froze as the bells on the door signaled my entrance. When the girls looked up my eyes dropped to the floor. In a split second I noticed my worn shoes and frayed pants speckled with dust.I felt as unkempt as a basket of dirty laundry.
          I seemed to walk in slow motion, my journey to the booths taking an eternity. Unfortunately all three girls were starring at me causing me to melt into a nervous puddle.Blank looks from Jenny and Louise and a smile from Lana greeted me.
          "Sit down and join us Tommy," said Lana as she patted the empty space next to her. Jenny and Louise turned their heads slightly to each other, widening their eyes and arching their brows. "Okay", I finally choked out.
        I never in my life wanted and not wanted to be in one place at the same time. I was dressed horribly and Jenny and Louise didn't want me around any more then they wanted a dead fly floating in their soda.
         I was caught off guard completely. I eased into the booth next to Lana not knowing how much space should be between us. I kinda let one leg hang into the aisle way. I smiled tentatively to Lana, my mind racing, trying to handle this unknown territory.
         It was 90 degrees outside and I felt hotter as beads of sweat formed on my temples.  Of course Lana didn't look flushed at all,she was as comfortable as if she was enjoying a summer breeze.
          Lana's smile put me at ease, she tilted her head, her brown eyes shining at me. "Are you glad schools out for the summer Tommy? Of course you are, what a silly question", she giggled. At that moment She touched my right hand and squeezed it.
           I starred at my hand and then at Jenny across the table.I must of had a surprised look because Jenny snickered and shook her head at me.
           Breathing deeply, I smelled the fresh scent of lilac perfume from Lana.This whole thing was getting too much for me to handle.I just wished Jenny and Louise were not there. Anything I said or did would seem stupid to them.
            I was just in awe of Lana. Sitting next to her was a gift for me.I fought to keep her attention, watching how much soda was left in her glass even summoning up the courage to buy her a refill.
             Normally I can chug a nickle coke in one drink. But today I savored it with small sips, slowly eating the ice, pretending to enjoy the drink as it watered down.
             Eventually Lana's girlfriends dominated the conversation. I lost my advantage and became a spectator. The aura that had made me part of the group began to fade. I felt cool and clammy as I became aware of the distance between myself and the girls.I knew I could not take the next step, I just wanted to leave,
             Lana provided a grateful exit, explaining she needed to go home to get ready to go out with her parents.
              Lana looked me in the eyes freezing my heart. She thanked me for the coke and i knew that beautiful smile meant more than goodbye.
               Lana and her friends left for Main St. I headed the other way, for the outskirts of town.

          

 

© 2016 richieb



Author's Note

richieb
Not a finished product. Just putting it out there for comments.

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Featured Review

Aloha Richie, this was so easy to settle into and be transported to a simpler time in life. The lead in was so good! That sinking feeling he had knowing they were watching him and how he felt unkempt. Tommy is so loveable and I couldn't help but wish for Jenny & Louise to give Tommy and Lana some space. I loved following Tommys thoughts...contemplating buying Lana a refil and him savoring his coke just for the chance to have more of her time and attention. So easy to read. Loved it and hope you share more. Izzy

Posted 5 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

richieb

5 Months Ago

Aloha Izzy,
Thank you for a very thoughtful review. I appreciate you br.. read more
Island Hippy

5 Months Ago

You're welcome, and I would enjoy any further reading. I think you've captured a time that was a gol.. read more


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BBP
I like this story. The time you set it in and the casual demeanor you gave Tommy, while his mind was running a million miles a minute.

This could be the beginning of a rad love story Richie.

Posted 5 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

richieb

5 Months Ago

Thank you B.B.
I would like to see Tommy and Lana get togethe.. read more
BBP

5 Months Ago

That's for sure. You can make em love, kill em, make em crazy or just put em through the ringer!read more
Aloha Richie, this was so easy to settle into and be transported to a simpler time in life. The lead in was so good! That sinking feeling he had knowing they were watching him and how he felt unkempt. Tommy is so loveable and I couldn't help but wish for Jenny & Louise to give Tommy and Lana some space. I loved following Tommys thoughts...contemplating buying Lana a refil and him savoring his coke just for the chance to have more of her time and attention. So easy to read. Loved it and hope you share more. Izzy

Posted 5 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

richieb

5 Months Ago

Aloha Izzy,
Thank you for a very thoughtful review. I appreciate you br.. read more
Island Hippy

5 Months Ago

You're welcome, and I would enjoy any further reading. I think you've captured a time that was a gol.. read more
Thank you so much J.T. for the detailed review. I appreciate it very much.
Sweeney's pharmacy is an excerpt from a book titled" The Apple Thrower" that I am working on.
It is based in rural Missouri during the Depression. It is a coming of age story of a young man dealing with serious family challenges.
Thank you again for reading and I look forward to reviewing your work.
Peace,
Richie b.

Posted 5 Months Ago


This is a charming snapshot of a young man coming of age. Very well crafted. By the end of the story I knew this young man well enough. The pace was even, the emotional tension was understated but perfect for this tale. Perhaps a little more about Lana would be welcomed but not necessary. The focus on what the young man was thinking, and feeling is sufficient. As for the other two girls, the few words describing them said it all. Scene details left room for the reader to participate in creating the setting. This is always a good idea. This author has a gift for story telling not just off the top of his head but from another voice within. There are one or two technical things not worth mentioning here. Reading the story out loud will identify them quick enough. Good job. Wasn't long enough to suite me. Ciao, JT

Posted 5 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

I find this an enjoyable read..beautiful write..
Waiting for more

Posted 5 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

richieb

5 Months Ago

Thank you Farhan, I appreciate your kind words.
.. read more
Farhan Shaikh

5 Months Ago

Your welcome
I find this snippet quite enjoyable. The setting and more innocent time are familiar, as are the narrator's thoughts. He's much like I was at that age, sensitive about clothes and low station in life. Thank goodness for girls like Lana who see beyond vanity and find the real worth of a young fellow.

Posted 7 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

richieb

7 Months Ago

Samuel,
Great to hear from you. Thank you for the thoughtful review.
.. read more
i will be waiting for the next

Posted 7 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

richieb

7 Months Ago

kristel,
Thank you for reading.
Blessings,.. read more
I could only wish the two girls left the place and gave space to Tommy and Lana. It will too much for me expect when this is a part of a bigger work. It is written beautifully. Thank you for the read request.

Posted 8 Months Ago


richieb

8 Months Ago

Queen,
Thank you for your generous review. Tommy and Lana will have more opportuni.. read more
Everything I read of yours is so easy to imagine. It feels like I am right there with the characters. You have a smoothness that I admire. Everything feels natural and authentic. Wonderful as always Richie!

Posted 9 Months Ago


Intriguing. Don't know where this fits in the novel, but it certainly make me want to read the next page. i think we can all relate to that sense of being pushed out of a group by people who think they are better than we are. Look forward to seeing more of it.

Posted 1 Year Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

richieb

1 Year Ago

LSE,
Thank you for your positive comments. Tommy and La.. read more

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Added on April 23, 2016
Last Updated on April 23, 2016

Author

richieb
richieb

Shelby, OH



About
I am a steelworker with 34 years experience looking forward to retirement in 3years. I want to start writing short stories and maybe try a novel. want to be part of a writing group that offers suppor.. more..

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