She inhaled through her mouth to keep the stench of him out of her nose. Backing up was not an option, the world was watching, and cameras were never forgiving. In an election this close, every interaction counted. When his dirty calloused hands gripped hers with the desperation of a drowning man, she forced her best smile. “How are you doing, sir?”
“I’m hungry,” he croaked with a rusty voice.
She nodded as his grip grew harder still. “Well let’s do something about that….what’s your name?”
“Sgt. Daniel Stephens. I did two tours in Iraq.”
A hundred camera flashes followed by pregnant silence. She exhaled and breathed him in fully through her nose.
“Thank you for your serve, Sgt. Stephens. Would like to join me for a bite to eat at Denny’s?”