Chris has written more than 300 flash fiction/short stories. Working Vacation was 21st out of 6,700 in the 2016 Writer's Digest competition.
"I just don't think I can do it anymore." Ralph shook his head and stared down at his shoes.
"What made you decide never to kiss another woman? said Craig.
"I watched a video at my dentist's office." Ralph tossed his hands up in despair and flopped onto the couch.
"A video of what? Some guy telling you not to kiss women?"
"This guy makes a lot of sense. He backs everything up with facts."
"So what's the basic premise?"
"The mouth is a warm, moist environment, perfect for growing all kinds of bacteria. Really, you should see the pictures of these things. They're like all the most horrible, strange, mutant, hairy monsters from outer space that you've ever seen in sci-fi and horror films, except these guys are real, and they live on your tongue."
"You mentioned facts at one point in this conversation."
"Well, try this one on for size. The human mouth has one hundred million microorganisms per milliliter of saliva. A public toilet only has thirty-two hundred."
"So you'd rather kiss a public toilet than a woman?"
"I'd be thirty-one-thousand times less likely to catch some dreaded disease."
I'm going to ignore the fact that you actually did the math."
There was a knock at the door, and Craig opened it. "Oh, hi, Jonesy. Come on in. We're just discussing the reason Ralph has decided never to kiss another woman for the rest of his life."
"Filthy mouths," said Jonesy.
"Not you too?" Craig shook his head and went into the kitchen.
"Oh, you're the kind of guy who thinks that when he goes out on a date it's just him and the pretty lady. Well there's a whole colony of freakish devils lurking you know where." Jonesy opened his mouth and pointed inside. "La la land, that's where you live, Craig, la la land."
"Ok, smartypants, what do you do when a woman wants to kiss you?" Craig sprayed Lysol on the countertop and wiped it off.
"Just what you're doing right there, buddy, I purify." Jonesy held up his index finger as though he were making an important point.
"Purify? With what?" said Ralph. "Don't tell me you gargle with Lysol."
"With one of these." Jonesy produced a small, gel-filled capsule from his pocket. Just pop it into your mouth before you start kissing and your mouth will be as clean as a baby's behind."
"I don't think I like the analogy," said Ralph. "And besides, that only means she would be protected from my mouth, but what about me? There she sits, ready to get it on, and she's got a loaded weapon for a mouth. I go in for a little smooch and she lets me have it with both barrels, little hairy creatures blasting from her mouth into mine. It's practically murder, I tell ya."
"Wait, I'm not finished," said Jonesy. While you're kissing, you push the remainder of the capsule into her mouth. If she's sufficiently distracted by your kissing prowess, she won't notice.
"That's disgusting," said Craig.
"You mean just like that we can both be sterile kissing machines?" Ralph rose from the couch.
"Certainly. I use it all the time. But remember, it all depends on kissing prowess."
"You might want to practice that prowess thing on the mirror in your bathroom, Ralph." Craig continued wiping the counter.
"Could I use that one, Jonesy? I'd like to try it tonight with Janis." Ralph held out his hand, and the hope for any future romance landed in his palm.
"Well that was a very sensual movie." Janis sat in Ralph's car outside her apartment. "It kind of left me feeling a little frisky if you know what I mean." She giggled and snuggled as close to Ralph as the console between them would allow.
Ralph slipped the gel capsule into his mouth.
"What did you just put into your mouth?" said Janis.
"Nothing," said Ralph. "I didn't put anything in my mouth."
"Yes you did. I saw you put something in your mouth."
"Don't be silly, Janis. Come here and kiss me." Ralph held Janis and their lips touched. She was beginning to moan a little and Ralph was getting excited.
"What was that?" Janis jerked away from Ralph.
"What was what?"
"You just slid something into my mouth with your tongue." Janis reached into her mouth and extracted the remainder of the gel capsule. "What is this, Ralph?"
"It's just a little something to clean your mouth."
"You think I have a dirty mouth?"
Ralph began to explain and fortunately lived to regret it.
"Hi Ralph. How'd the date go last night?" Craig held the door open for his friend to enter.
"You know that little pill Jonesy gave me?"
"You mean the one that was supposed to give you both mouths as pure as the wind driven snow?
"Actually, Janis's mouth got quite a bit dirtier after I tried to use it."
"OOH, that doesn't sound so good."
"I was doing pretty well digging my way out of a very deep hole and tried one more time to explain."
"One explanation too far, huh?"
"Yep. I used the public toilet analogy."
"So then what happened?"
"We went into her apartment, and she took me into the bathroom."
"I don't like the sound of this."
"She said if I ever wanted another kiss from her, I had to lick the toilet."
"And you said, so long, sweet cheeks, and walked out, right?"
"Craig, I really like this girl."
"Don't tell me you licked the toilet, because if you do tell me you licked the toilet, I'm throwing you out of my apartment."
"Which is exactly what she did after I licked the toilet."
"Just one more thing, Craig, then I'll leave."
"What is it, potty mouth."
"Can I borrow your Lysol?"
With a Fresh Lemon Flavor
© 2017 Chris Mills