The Listener


He sat quietly attentive, listening.

The Woman with the Shaved Head smiled. “You’re so sweet. What makes you so sweet?”

He shrugged his shoulders. “I listen.”

“I noticed. To everything.”

He nodded.

She stared at him for a while, studying. Then, finally: “Hmm. Wait here.”

“For what?”

“I’ll just be a moment.” She walked over to a man who was clearly her companion. He took her in an easy embrace, his hands wandering her body as they lightly kissed. The Listener looked away in embarrassment.

The Gentleman Companion and the Woman with the Shaved Head returned to the table. “We’d like to hire you,” she said.

“To do what?”

“Nothing. Listen. Just listen.”

“To what?”

“To anyone who comes along.”

“Anything in particular?”

She shook her head. “Just listen. And then let us know what they say. It doesnt matter what. Just listen.”

“I can do that.”

“We’re certain you can.”

“But… why? What do you hope to learn?”

The Gentleman Companion kissed the Woman with the Shaved Head once again, then left. She watched him leave, with the tiniest of sighs, then turned back to the Listener. “Just record what they say. Write it on your…” She waved passingly at his laptop. “Remember, though: anyone who comes along.”


She shook her head. “Anyone. There’s a difference, you know.”

His head was starting to hurt. None of this made sense. “But — ”

“Just listen,” she repeated, then vanished.

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