"What did we do today?" the Muse asked, not looking up from her sketch pad. "I can't remember if we had fun or not."
"I thought I was the one losing his memory," I said. "You're the one who is supposed to be younger and have a more supple and squishy brain."
"Infinitely more squishy. Deliciously supple. Now remind me what we did, would you?"
"Oh, a thrilling day, simply thrilling. We got up around noon, went out to lunch, and then you got sick so we came back home and you went back to bed for about three hours. I read, you slept. Later, you woke up, had dinner, and then laid around on the couch watching TV all night. A very full day."
"Good," she said. "Wouldn't want to feel like I'd wasted it or anything."
"We need to go on another road trip," the Muse said. "I have to get the hell out of Dodge, and you're my driver."
"I don't have any more vacation time until next year," I said. "And I used up most of my sick time when I threw out my back. I doubt that I can get any time off work just because you're in need of a long drive in the country."
She popped a BBQ chip in her mouth. "Hey, I'm a woman of the world, and I'm feeling stagnant. Don't make me have to make some new friends who will go road tripping with me, buster."
"You might just have to. There is literally no way out of work for me until next spring."
"Not even if your roommate kills himself?"
"First off, I don't have a roommate. Secondly, if I did and he killed himself, the best it would get me would be an A for the semester, and I haven't been in college for about ten years. So that's right out."
She humphed. "Fine then. Make me have to find someone to go someplace with. You place too much value on a steady job, you know."
"A steady income is a good thing when it's time to buy food and pay the rent."
"I haven't had a steady job in years, and I manage to get all that done just fine."
"That, my dear Muse, is because I buy you dinner all the time. And I'm pretty sure you trade sex for rent money, but I can't prove it."
She crossed her arms over her chest. "I don't trade sex for money. The sex is free. It's the modeling and inspiration that rakes in the dough."
"Remind me to claim my portion of free sex sometime, would you? I didn't realize that you were handing it out like pamphlets to a free concert in front of the coffee shop."
"Our relationship transcends sex," she said.
"Hard to transcend what we've never had," I said, "but it's your story, so stick with it."
"Sex would cheapen us as a couple."
"Sex would be a lot of fun, and it would help to pass the time until a comet hits the earth and kills us all off."
"This does not help me in the road trip department, you know, no matter how cute you think you're being with your doomsday scenario."
"Okay, look, why don't we pop off someplace this weekend, hmm? We can throw some junk food in the car, get some loud rock music, pick a direction and just drive until it's time to turn around and come back."
"It's a start," she said. "Hopefully I can make it that long without losing my mind."
"I think you'll manage somehow. You need a hobby or something."
"You need a rich and sickly relative to die and leave you a few million dollars."
"I'll see what I can do," I said, "but don't hold your breath on that one. Unless your new hobby is going to be pearl diving."
She laughed. "Oh, sugar, I've done plenty of that in my time!"
"Hmm," I said. "I think you just said something really, really filthy, but I can't quite nail it down."
She grinned. "Keep working on it and get back to me."