Short Story Sunday 178: Random

Short Story: "Random" | Flash Fiction

            Quinn walked through the long hallway at one of the buildings of her college campus. She walked with her head down staring at her cell phone. She was texting her sister, Alexia, who was somewhere at the same college. She was just in a different building in class.

After sending a quick response to her sister, Quinn looked up from her phone to watch where she was going. She was headed to the library to work on some homework while she waited for Alexia to get out of class. There were a ton of kids walking coming out of the library. Quinn stepped to the side to let them through. A class must have just got out that was being held in the library.

“You’re misinterpreting randomness.” A tall guy said to his friend as they walked by.

Quinn couldn’t help but smirk at the comment. She had no idea what they had been talking about, but she found it hilarious all the same. That was definitely something Alexia would love to hear.

As Quinn entered the library, she put her cell phone into her back pocket. The librarians didn’t care if the students were on their cell phones just as long as they were on silent and didn’t actually talk on the phone. Even so, Quinn always felt as though she was breaking some sort of rule if a librarian noticed her texting or playing a game on her phone.

She walked all the way to the back of the library behind some tall bookshelves and put her tote bag down on top of an empty square table. She took her phone out of her back pocket, put it on the table, and sat down. Quinn took out her laptop and turned it on. While waiting for it to boot up, she plugged her computer into a small dome-shaped outlet in the middle of the table that fit four plugs. She reached back into her bag, took out a notebook and pen, and then put her tote bag down on the ground underneath her chair.

Her laptop, being five years old, was still loading since she had shut it down all the way instead of hibernating it like she usually did. So, Quinn picked up her cell phone and texted her sister: “Heard in the halls: ‘You’re misinterpreting randomness!’” She snickered as she hit the send button before putting it back down and then giving her attention to her laptop.

Quinn opened her notebook to her notes about the book she was reading for her English class. Her professor had given the class a list of three essay questions to go along with the book. Quinn had picked one out and already wrote a rough draft of most of the essay in her notebook. She always liked writing her essays in notebooks first. Then she could edit, add, and delete things as she typed. So, when she edited the typed version, it would be like already editing the second draft.

Once she got a word document up on her laptop and was just about to type away, she noticed the screen of her phone light up from the corner of her eye. She smiled knowing that Alexia would get a kick out of that sentence Quinn had just texted her. Quinn couldn’t wait to see what she said.

“Hmm. I wonder what that means?”

Quinn raised an eyebrow at the response. What was that supposed to mean? It was just funny, wasn’t it?

“I mean,” Alexia texted again, “I wonder if someone said something silly and someone else took offense to it. Hence, them misinterpreting randomness.”

Quinn scratched the top of her head while texting back with one finger on her other hand. “Aren’t you over thinking this one just a bit? I just thought it was funny and, no pun intended, random.”

“Right, but that’s a great line to use in a novel.” Alexia responded.

Quinn nodded her head impressed once she got the response from her sister. Both Quinn and Alexia enjoyed writing stories. Neither one of them knew if they were serious enough to want to be published someday, but they both searched for ideas everywhere. Inspiration was hidden in everyday life and it was fun to find.

“So, I’m trying to imagine the story behind it.” Alexia replied again.

“I think you’re right on the ball.” Quinn typed into her phone. “I don’t really have any other ideas as to what it could mean. I mean, who says that kind of thing to people?”

Quinn got back to typing up her essay as Alexia didn’t respond for a while. Quinn knew that she had a test in her math class was probably in the middle of doing that. The best part about taking tests in college was that, usually, when you finished you were able to leave class early. Alexia was pretty good at math, so Quinn had her hopes up that she would finish quickly and the two of them would be able to go home early.

Both of them also had the day off from work so both of them were eager to get home and early as possible and enjoy the rest of the day.

Another half hour had passed when Alexia texted Quinn to meet her at the car in the parking lot. Quinn grinned at the message. Alexia was usually in class for another 45 minutes. She was happy to get out early.

She packed up all of her things, not bothering to turn off her laptop. She simply closed it knowing that she was going to use it right when she got home anyway. Quinn put everything into her tote bag and stood up to leave.

As she walked out of the library, she passed by the two boys coming back into library. Quinn looked away from them as she caught herself smiling thinking back to what they were saying earlier.

“Yeah, she’s still mad at me. I started speaking gibberish and she thought I was making fun of another culture. I told her I was just being random, but she didn’t believe me.”

Quinn raised an eyebrow as they entered the library and she exited the building. That was a pretty stupid reason to why he said what he did earlier, unless they were talking about something else, but that didn’t seem the case.

Quinn smiled again as she headed towards the parking lot. She and Alexia could write a much better story using that line of dialogue.

Words: 1,090

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