Gini placed her glass on the coaster. The Dunkel in her frosted glass frothed intensely, threatening to spill out. Inu gave her a disapproving look.
“How you can like your beer like this, has always escaped me.”
Gini looked at Inu’s glass. Her pale ale was sitting perfectly, its copper hued body showing only mild signs of a white head.
“Yeah, yeah! I can’t help it if you like to have it in an unhealthy way.”
“Hey! If you are going to froth it and waste so much of it, I would call that a waste.”
Gini lifted the glass and took a deep sip.
“Like I always say – To each their own.”
“Are you laughing at my statement?”
“Not at all. Just at your choice in growing facial hair.”
Gini realized she had froth around her mouth. She joined in the laughter. Their laughter was quite loud, but this in no way caused any ruckus, for there was no else in the pub. It was just the two of them and a couple of servers. The dark pub was tailored to emulate an olden Irish establishment. The walls and tiles had a grey stone-finish while the tables were a complimentary shade of gingerbread brown. The setup was complete with a fully stocked bar, displaying all its wares on wooden open-top shelves, and a multitude of beer taps at a ready reach for the barkeep. Maroon-cushioned bar stools completed the look.
“But, speaking of beer froth, is this not where it all began for us?”
“Right you are, Gini. Right you are. Fifteen years ago.”
“Wow! Has it been so long already?”
“Yep! The first year in our graduation struggle. Wait, my graduation struggle. You were always among the top-scorers.”
“Come on, nothing like that.”
“Gini Siqueira – honour student and pride of the batch.”
“Let’s not forget – party animal.”
“Oh yes! That is how we met. You had had one beer too many and were gyrating on the table, much to the delight of all the boys there.”
Gini chortled as she took another swig from her glass.
“I agree. I had had a lot I guess.”
“Totally! And I had to drop you home after you passed out, knocking the whole table’s drinks on to me.”
“Come on, Inu. I have apologized for that. Besides, that is how we met for the first time.”
“No apologies needed, stupid. I am glad that happened. After that incident, we frequented this place. Our bond growing stronger hand in hand with the increasing potency of the concoctions we drained here.“
“Indeed. But, nothing could replace beer.”
“Cheers to that!”
Gini and Inu clanked their glasses together, spilling the brown and copper liquids on the table.
“That was a hard cheer. We need to be careful, Inu. Lest we repeat what we did after our final marks came through.”
Inu chuckled, but was quick to place her glass down.
“I did not even expect to pass, you know. I hated numbers, and accounts, and all that shit. I just did it because my parents asked me to do it. ”
“Yes, I know. I remember you announcing that they were tyrants who dictated every move you made in life.”
“I said too much, I guess. You know there was a lot happening then. My parents wanted to marry me off. I had my own dreams, I wanted to do a lot before I settled down. They just did not get it.”
“So, you just ran off and came to live with me. Very mature indeed!”
Inu took a large gulp of the beer.
“Come on, I was a kid back then.”
Gini stuck out her tongue.
“And I wasn’t?”
“No you weren’t. You were always the mature one. You were the one who convinced my parents to drop marriage plans. You convinced them that it was okay for me to leave my house and seek my own adventure. Well, all that as long as I promised to call them every day.”
“I may have done that. However, I was not always the mature one. You handled me through my multiple break-ups and problems. Anyone wanting to mess with me had to go through you.”
“That is what best friends are for, no? I had every faith in you that you would become a big-shot – minting money every day.”
“I had to live up to my best friend’s faith, no? I was never as brave as you were. I stuck to the status quo. Worked at those boring 9 to 5 jobs and worked my way up the corporate ladder. I simply walked down a beaten path. You are different Inu. You took the road through the woods. I don’t think I would have been able to work at jobs that interested me but offered no stability.”
“Yeah, I did a lot of different gigs. However, I continued saving up and always worked towards my dream. Speaking of which, I need to get to work now.”
Inu drained her glass and walked up to the bar. She took her place behind the bar. Gini followed her, glass in hand and sat down on the plush stool.
“So, barkeeper, can I get a refill?”
Inu laughed as she took the glass from Gini and refilled it at the tap.
“You can froth it up, Inu. Our journey began covered with froth. Now, I see you have finally achieved your dream. I think we can do with more froth – a refill for my glass and a refuel for our journey.”
“Thanks a lot for everything Gini. I owe you my dream.”
“No you don’t. Your dream is yours and you worked hard to achieve it. I just helped my best friend achieve it. The victory is yours.”
“No, it is ours.”
“Cheers to that, Inu. Shall we turn on the lights then? It is opening night after all.”
Inu had tears in her eyes as she nodded.
“Very well, co-owner. The Frothy Beer has now reopened for business. My dream is our dream now.”
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