Logan sat, a bit impatiently, in the waiting room of the orthodontist's office. This was the one chore he dispised above all else, for without fail, he was the only adult male present in the room. Neatly coifed women and their children, all of whom eyed him with either curiousity, distrust or disdain. He felt decidedly uncomfortable, dressed in his worn faded denims, tight black t-shirt, and very old cowboy boots. This doctor's office was a world of the elite, and a man who was just this side of a Hell's Angel was definately out of place. Everytime he pulled up in front of the office, on his noisy bike, parking it in amongst the BMW's and Mercedes and Porsches, and looked up at the building with its' shiny ediface and neatly manicured shrubs, he wished he was a bit more persuasive in trying to get someone, anyone to take over this task. He never was. He had to swallow his pride, for this was his job, and he had to do it.
He repeatedly glanced at his watch, eager to leave, eager to grab some lunch. The woman sitting next to him was just bold and snobbish enough to outright stare at him. He had seen her before, always impecibly dressed, always with her nose in the air, always with enough perfume on to gag a maggot. Logan always wondered what the woman would do if he let a good fart loose. He had to think like that, to keep from going crazy. He just sat there, reading the months old Time magazine, feeling her distaste for him flow over his body. One of these days, lady, and I just might give you an earful, he mused. He was grateful when her daughter stepped out of the doctor's office, looking every bit the little snob, just like her mother. Logan sighed as the two left. I hate Westchester, he thought.
He had been there for almost an hour, and was very close to causing a scene, when Francis trotted into the waiting room.
"What took you so long?"
"The doctor had a 'mergency." The boy smiled, having more metal in his mouth than Logan had in his entire body.
"You mean E-mergency?"
"That's what I said." He trotted up to the front desk, to get his next appointment. Logan always wondered why the kid had to bounce everywhere he went. He could swear he could hear the kid's legs go 'boing'.
The woman at the desk was up to her armpits in paperwork, charts, phone messages, and the office's lunch order. However, she was always on top of things, and she was the only purely nice person in the whole building. "Well, Francis. Done for another month, huh?" The boy nodded, still bouncing.
"Well, let's see now.......one month from today would be...........oh, shoot. The doctor will be on vacation that week. We could have you seen by Dr. Sanchez, or you could wait another week to see Dr. Lawrence when he comes back."
Francis looked up at Logan, waiting for him to make a decision. Personally, Logan hated Dr. Sanchez, who had the bed-side manner of a rabid dog. "Uh, we'll wait for Dr. Lawrence."
"Ok, dad, how about-"
"I'm not 'dad'."
"Oh, I am sorry. I keep forgetting that." She smiled warmly as she answered the phone once more, deftly transferring the call. She added new meaning to the term 'multi-task'. "Ok, May 3rd, 11:30am. Is that ok?"
"Francis Fahey.......May 3rd......11:30 am.........Here you go, there's your appointment card." Francis took it and placed it in his back pocket. "Mr. Fahey-"
"Uh, Mr. Logan, you will of course get a reminder notice in the mail. Is the billing still care of Xavier's Institute?"
"Ok, then. You're all set. See you in a month then, Francis."
Francis flashed his metal filled smile at her. "Bye."
Francis ate his taco with enthusiasm. He loved tacos, and fajitas. Mostly, he liked it when Logan took him to the little taco place, because he could order pretty much anything he wanted. Jean and Storm never let him order anything that was not good for him, but Logan felt that the occasional taco wouldn't hurt. Or ice cream for that matter. Logan felt that Francis should not be deprived of what he loved, simply because it didn't fit into his diet. He was doing a good job, eating lots of fruit and vegetables, taking his vitamins every day, and a little ice cream is just a reward. Besides, the cold ice cream was soothing to the little guy's sore, metal filled mouth.
It was a nice day, and the two sat outside at a picnic bench. Logan simply bought a dozen tacos, and two large drinks. (Loganberry of course). The two sat side by side, watching the world go by as they ate. Occasionally, a woman would walk by, and give Logan a lingering glance. Logan would return it, depending on how interesting the woman looked. Francis noticed these exchanges, and would look from the woman, to Logan, and back again. After one extremely lengthy exchange, Francis was overcome with curiosity, and had to open up with a stream of questions.
"Mr. Logan? Do you know that lady? She looks like she knows you. How come you didn't say hi to her?"
Logan continued eating his taco, his sixth, and gave the boy a sidelong glance. "No. Don't know her."
"It looked like you did."
"Nope. Never seen her before."
Francis was confused. "But....she smiled at you. I saw her wink."
"And you smiled at her."
"But you don't know her?"
"Nope." Logan wiped the taco sauce from his lips, and looked at Francis. The little guy stared at his taco, his brow knitted, deep in thought. He knew the boy's look. He had to explain what was going on, or it would bother the kid the rest of the day, and that meant more questions.
"Look, she was just flirting."
Francis looked up at the big man, his brow still knitted. "Flirting?"
"Yeah. Girls do that."
"When they are interested, they flirt."
The boy's eyes gleamed that brilliant green. "Interested in what?"
Logan had a feeling he wasn't quite making himself clear. "Uh, guys."
"Because that's what they do."
"Does she want to be your friend?"
"Uh, there's a little more to it than that."
Again, Francis' eyes gleamed in confusion. Logan was now certain that he had completely lost the kid. "More to it? Like what?"
"Like...uh...she wants to be more....than a friend."
"Yeah, more." Uh oh, Logan thought. This kid really has no clue, what-so-ever.
"I don't understand."
Logan just sighed, and started his seventh taco. "Uh, eat up kid. We gotta get back before Storm has a fit. You don't want to miss your English class, do you?"
"We'll talk about it later. Come on, eat your lunch."
Francis was still deep in thought as he finished his taco, occasionally glancing at the woman who had "flirted" with Logan.