The Stork liked to be well fed before he delivered. He sopped up the last of the biscuit and gravy, fingernails slightly scraping the bottom of the plate.
“Mmm, good stuff.”
The couple smiled back, the husband uneasily, the wife with as much depth as the kitchen wallpaper. The Stork drank them in. The pattern was always the same: Man, wife; him, anxious; her, impatient; his macho resentment, her dead resignation; people rich enough to buy happiness but not wealthy enough to avoid the high price. He wiped his mouth and nose on his dirty Ed Hardy: these were The Stork’s kind of people
The husband rubbed the manila folder between his fingers and stiffly leaned forward. “6’2”, crew champion, Rhodes finalist. This is,” he eyes wandered to an imaginary place underneath the table in front of his guest, “ impressive stock.
“But how can we be sure you deliver this and not” the husband helplessly waved his hand at The Stork in an encompasing motion, “you?”
The Stork stood up, reaching over his bloated stomach to pat his crotch. The wife involuntarily clutched the top of her robe. “You’ve got my references. I’m the best DNA surrogate in the state, that’s for damn sure.
“Listen, guys, you can try one of those fancy clinics with just as little guarantee and pay a fortune. You can go and adopt some little psycho brat who’ll one day kill you in your sleep, or…” he puffed his chest and paused for effect, “you can let me do what I do best: give you the little package you want. Your call.”
Anxiety, impatience. Resentment, resignation. It was always the same, then always the same result. They agreed to the terms and showed him to his new room, spacious and functional. A bed made for hard work. Without looking back, the husband left his wife with The Stork, hoping for a speedy delivery.
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