On your left shoulder

The four of them were sitting at the table. On the web-radio, playing on the computer behind one of them, some old swing music was on (he had always liked Frank Sinatra.) "I've always liked Frank Sinatra", one of them said. Another one asked if that's what they're listening to and, after the affirmative answer, he listened a little bit more carefully --he knew who Frank Sinatra was, somewhere on the road of his life he had heard the name, but had never really listened to one of his songs. "Cool", a third man said, "it really goes with the mood right now". The fourth man was about to make a decision and wasn't really listening. "Check", he said. The others answered with a nod of the head or a short knock on the table.

He felt a little tingling on his left arm, starting at the elbow, going all the way up to his fingertips. It was his turn. He reached for his glass with the other hand, took a sip of hazelnut liquor, put the glass on the table and suppressed (not completely) a smile while he said "Raise, four hundred", with a soft, elegant voice. The other ones tried to avoid showing any mood changes and kept "acting normal". After they had all said their stances (three called, one folded), he softly muttered "good" and, for a short moment, an icy blue flare flashed in his eyes.

As they kept playing, the smile on his face started to become more noticeable. It was his turn again, he raised the bet, to six hundred this time. The man left from him was pondering his options. «Come on, call, the pot is huge, you know you could win it all», the man thought. He took another drink from his beer, and, after leaving it on its place again, threw six black chips to the centre of the table. The turn was for the man opposite to him. «It's about time for another drink, your mouth is going dry», the thought went round and round in his head. "I. I. Hmm.. I'll... Hmm Yes, I'll pass... I fold, I mean", and as soon as he was finished with that, he stood up and fetched himself yet another beer. Finally, the last player was next. Starting to lose his temper, he had almost shouted at his neighbour to the right to hurry up and make his mind and to stop drinking before he couldn't think at all. He could clearly see it in his mind, how he suddenly stood up and, without any notice, just beat the crap out of this foolish drunk. But he suppressed the thought and called with equally black six chips.


His eyes flared with more intensiveness as the game kept going.

When they finally finished playing, one of them had almost tripled the money he initially had, another one was so drunk, he couldn't even stand straight, a third one was so angry that was already nervous and shouted every time he opened his mouth.

He, however, had exactly the same amount of money he had begun with, and that eternal faint smile, which clearly revealed that he was the only one who enjoyed the game.

**

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