"When's it coming?" asked Paula. She stood wobbly in the alley, in a silver evening gown with half the skirt ripped off. She teetered and leaned on her two companions. The men, who both wore formal suits, Shane and Kazimir propped her up against a brick wall. Shane, rubbed his eyes and tried to read his watch. Kazimir looked up into the sky.
"Dunno," slurred Shane. He flopped against the wall. She and he started to giggle uncontrollably.
Kazimir frowned at them, his hands on his hips.
"I can't carry you both home," he said.
The other two laughed harder. Somewhere off in the distance there was screaming and the sound of glass shattering followed by an alarm. Kazimir immediately turned to the sound, his posture rigid.
"Partiers or looters, Kaz?" asked Shane laughing. Kazimir shot him a withering glance.
"We don't know what's going to happen," said Paula.
"We could be dead tomorrow," said Shane, trying to keep a straight face.
"We could survive," said Paula. "They don't know where it's going to land."
"We should have taken more precautions," said Kazimir.
"What can we do?" asked Shane. "It's a big hunk of rock in space. Our parents' generation should have blown it up when they--"
"--No," said Paula. "Everyone says that, but then you'd just have more chunks. They don't know what they're talking about. The chunks would be individually less devastating but they would be more likely to land all over inhabited areas. You don't know what you're talking about. What they should have done is just nudged it out of its death spiral with chez Earth. Cheaper mission anyway."
"You watched too many of those news shows," said Shane.
"What else am I going to do? No one's hiring these days," said Paula. "Oh shit, you know this is depressing. I refuse!" She leaned forward, suddenly nauseated.
"What?" asked Shane. He put a heavy hand on her back. She nodded and groaned. "You gonna chuck?" he asked. She shook her head then straightened up, her hands across her stomach.
"I refuse," she continued, "to speculate on the next few hours, because we've got a problem right here."
"What?" asked Kazimir expectantly.
"You two," she said, grinning. Kazimir and Shane looked at each sheepishly then both quickly returned their attention to her. "You like each other, and you're afraid to admit it. I get it, I do, but shit, guys, this could be your last few hours alive. What are you gonna do about it?"
"Is zat true?" asked Shane, looking at Kazimir, who in turn looked at the ground.
"He's drunk," said Kazimir.
"You had your chance, Kaz," said Paula. "You've always got to be the white knight..."
"Doesn't change how I feel about you. I'll admit it. I'm in love," said Shane. "I know you're super cautious and--"
Kazimir crossed the distance to Shane in one stride and pressed his lips against Shane's, his hands on either side of the other man's face, and to his relief his kiss was returned.
Paula clapped her hands and giggled.
"Finally!" she exclaimed.
Kazimir pulled away but they held hands. He grabbed Paula's hand and squeezed it.
"Come on," he said. "I'm going to sober you both up in time for impact. You're my two best friends and I'm not going to let a stupid asteroid have the last word. Not now."