The Tuna nods to Tina and to his shot glass. Tina nods, picks up the Jack Daniels and fills the Tuna’s glass before refilling hers. Tina says, “Tuna, the only man besides you I can trust is Jack Daniels.”
“You can count on Jack Daniels not stabbing you in the back, not stepping out with someone he ain’t sposed to step out with, and he’s always smooth on the palate and finishes sweet,” says the Tuna sipping Jack Daniels from his shot glass.
“What about me? I’m smooth and sweet,” says Nick.
Tina glares at Nick, “How can I trust a man who won’t propose to me?” Tina closes her eyes and lets Jack Daniels find its way over her lips, across her tongue and down into her belly.
The Tuna holds up a hand. “Beautiful broad, Nick is wanting all the benefits a beautiful, kind, and good broad can give him without giving the one thing he needs to give.”
“I’d give Tinzi the shirt off my back, my autographed Tom Brady photo, what else can I give her?” asks Nick.
Tuna says, “Nick, you are whistling in the wind. Who wants a Tom Brady photo since he left town to play for the team down south? Anyone with a half of brain don’t want the shirt off your back. You ever take a close look at it?”
Nick glances down at his faded sweatshirt, the pull string missing from the hoodie, and holes in both elbows. He looks at Tuna, “It’s the mental value that counts.”
Legos says, “You mean sentimental.”
“What’s that?” says Nick.
“Nick’s got no clue. Sing it, Tuna,” says Tina.
The Tuna continues talking to Nick while jabbing his crooked forefinger at Tony, “What Tina wants from you is a commitment.”
“You are the man, Tuna. Can I be a nanny in your house? I’ll work cheap. I’ll be a nanny with benefits. Maria will never catch on,” says Tina.
“Beautiful broad, Maria and me don’t have no need for a nanny. Maria gives me all the benefits I need. Nick is a bigger fool than the fool I know he is if he lets you slip away. Now, I am gonna lay the skinny on Tone. I owe him that much.”
Tina nods then says, “Tuna, you’ll always be number one in my life.” Tina stares at Nick and says, “This ain’t over, Nick. I’ll tell you what I’m thinking. When it’s time for your next waxing, I’m gonna do it free of charge.”
“Nick, Nick, Nick, Tina’s going to do your next waxing. You’ll never be the same. It’s like what they do to a male dog at the animal shelter,” says Tony.
“Tone,” says the Tuna.
“I need to not talk and listen, right, Tune?” asks Tony.
The Tuna nods. He says, “I’m going straight to the finish line. Stella got a heart as black as coal and a conscience as cold as an iceberg. Stella’s gonna shuck you off like dirty shirt and give you a world of hurt. She’s been tossing shade at you behind your back so deep and so black you are the laughing stock at the Fitness Center. You got a woman who’s pushing all your buttons, but she’s getting the best of you. She’s got you acting like a new puppy and doing everything she asks you do. I’m giving it to you straight, you’re only a shadow of the man you used to be, Tone.”
Tony leans on the table toward the Tuna, “I know something’s not feeling right. I was thinking it was heart burn. What happened to me, Tune? Where did it all go wrong?”
Legos says, “I’m not sure it was ever right.”
Tony ignores Legos. He says, “Tune, you sure Stella’s tossing shade at me? Not my Stella. It’s more like Stella is telling everybody she loves me. She tells me I’m the sunshine in her life. She told me she tells her friends I’m her extra scoop of marinara on a meatball sub.”
The Tuna looks at Legos, “Fill a shot glass with Jack Daniels for Tone. Tone, toss the shot down, don’t take no time to savor the taste. Feel the burn. I gotta get it in your system fast.”
The Tuna continues, “Stella don’t know it, but I got a lot of friends who work at the Fitness Center and they tell me everything. They told me things I know about Stella. They told me things I didn’t know about Stella. They told me things I wish I didn’t know about Stella. What time does Stella come home from her job at the Fitness Center?”
Tone meekly says, “Around ten most nights, sometimes as late as three in morning.”
“You ever ask her about her why she’s staying at the gym all night?” asks the Tuna.
“Yah. Stella told me she is the most popular fitness instructor in the gym so she has to work overtime to fit everybody in. I know it’s true because she tells me she’s exhausted when she comes home,” says Tony.