Gary had thought he and Andy were just having a simple dinner when, upon finishing their meal, Andy signaled someone behind Gary. Gary turned around and watch as the waiter brought over a cupcake, complete with a lit candle. After he had set it down and left, Gary turned to Andy.
“What’s this for?”
“It’s your anniversary,” Andy replied. “One year sober. I’m proud of you.”
Gary shrugged, trying not to feel too boastful.
“I couldn’t have done it without you,” he told Andy.
“Yes you could have.” Before Gary could protest, Andy added, “But I’m glad I was here to help.”
The two sat in comfortable silence for a moment.
“So…a candle. Does this mean I get a wish? Or is that just for birthdays?”
Andy didn’t miss a beat.
“You definitely get a wish,” Andy said. “One for each year of sobriety. And they almost always come true. Sobriety cupcakes are special that way.”
“So next year, I get two cupcakes with a candle each?” Gary pressed. “And so on, until I’ll be in my sixties and wolfing down over twenty cupcakes and making loads of wishes?”
Andy nodded, trying to look as serious as possible. Gary smirked, then closed his eyes, pretending to mull over his wish for a very long time. Finally, he opened them and blew out the candle.
“What did you wish for?” Andy asked almost immediately.
“Well, I can’t tell you, can I? Won’t come true.”
“Ah, but that’s another thing about sobriety cupcakes. You can tell your wish to one other person and it’ll still come true. In fact, it increases the chances of it coming true. And since there’s only me and the waiter here –“ Andy scooted his chair forward and leaned in, conspiratorially.
Gary nodded, as if taking what Andy said into serious consideration. Then he turned around, scanning the restaurant for the waiter. He heard Andy making a scoffing sound, and Gary turned back to Andy, grinning his shit-eating grin. Andy rolled his eyes and smiled.
“So…your wish?” Andy prompted.
Gary paused, and appeared to be sincerely weighing his options. Finally, he shook his head.
“I don’t…I can’t risk it,” he explained, looking down at the cupcake and plucking off some icing on his finger. “It’s too important. And telling you could – “ He stopped and focused instead on nibbling on a sprinkle.
Andy, for his part, seemed to accept this answer. He took the candle off the cupcake and sucked the icing off the end, keeping his eyes on Gary, who hadn’t looked up from the table. Andy set the candle aside and put a hand on Gary’s shoulder, getting his attention.
“How ‘bout if I guess?” he offered. Then he leaned in and kissed Gary, softly and with only a slight amount of hesitation. It was chaste, until Gary put his hand on the back of Andy’s neck, pulling him in for a longer kiss, a deeper one that allowed them to briefly taste the remnants of the cupcake in each other’s mouths. They parted after only a moment, vaguely aware that they were in a public setting and had to keep it PG at best. Andy rested back in his chair, one hand holding onto Gary’s hand.
“Was I right?” he asked, trying not to sound too smug.
Gary paused, searching for the right words. Finally, he replied: “Sobriety cupcakes work a hell of a lot quicker than birthday cakes.”