The Final Request, by Sheri Rosen
“Good afternoon, Mr. Whitaker, Charlie,” said the waitress, nodding her head at the old man and young man sitting across from each other in the red booth. “What will you boys be ordering today?”
The waitress was perhaps a bit too bright and perky for her age, Carl thought, as he squinted down at the cracked, plastic menu clutched in his weathered hands. The small black font swam before his eyes. He knew he shouldn’t be so stubborn; he knew that buying a pair of glasses wouldn’t actually make him older. But he couldn’t bring himself to do it.
“Um, yes, I would like the fries with the house sauce, but on the side, please,” Carl told the waitress.
“That’s what I’m getting, too, Mr. Whitaker!” Charlie exclaimed.
Carl smiled at the younger man, whose blue eyes were wide with delight. If only he, too, could believe that their same order was some sort of spectacular coincidence. Of course, the waitress hadn’t written down their order, and it wasn’t because their order was so simple. It was because they had been ordering the same thing from the same spot for a long time — and the same time every day for the past eleven years…