She sat at the table of the House of Pastelle, spotty cloth splayed before her like a gift, cold glass of water between her hands, and watched as I cooked. I threw some more vegetable stock into the pan of Arborio rice and spun on my heels to continue wiping around the draining board. She continued to tell me about the boy that just wouldn't leave her alone, and with my free hand I grabbed the broom and began sweeping up around her. She continued to talk. Talk, talk, talk.
I got to my hands and knees to use the dustpan and brush, and interrupted her to ask if she wouldn't mind just stirring the rice for me.
"God," she said. "It's like a modern day Cinderella story around here huh?" she complained, slowly standing to assist in making her own dinner. She dragged her heels as she made to the stove.
I looked up at her, apron all bunched up around my waist, sweat on my brow, one hand with a dustpan and the other scrubbing down the countertop.
"Yeah," I agreed, nodding my head. "I couldn't agree more."