Chapter 1: Unexpected EncounterMature

I don't know what it is about women that they have to go forcing themselves into shit to feel pretty. As if tight heels were the answer to your huge feet. If the damn thing doesn't slip on with one or two tries, then dammit it doesn't fit. But the lady across from me insisted on trying to convince me that its my fault her damn shoes weren't fitting correctly.

Look, ma'am, I'm sorry this comes as news to you, but a size six is just too small for your feet.” The lady looked at me all baffled and crap as if I just praised Hitler.

Are you implying that I'm fat?” she gasped.

No. I'm pointing out the fact that your foot has been leading a glorious rebellion for the past half hour and that you should compromise before it costs you four-hundred dollars to pay for broken merchandise you can't use.”

Why, I...who do you think you are?” she began stuttering in an outrage. She started on about all this crap and whatnot in this overly dramatic british accent, babbling about crap and more crap, hell I didn't pay attention. Probably something about my life sucking, and my job sucking, and assuming that I can't get a girlfriend because of my attitude, and other crap that these women always insisted on spouting on about until my manager comes to shut them up. Oh, now look who it is, right on cue. Think of the devil and the slick bastard appears out of nowhere.

Is there a problem miss?” he began.

Yes, this employee you have here is quite rude, and I think he should be reprimanded.” The manager rolls his eyes and sighs, already knowing what happened.

Just tell me what happened miss.” he beckoned.

I was simply trying out a pair of shoes when I asked for his assistance to put them on. The damn things would not, for the love of God, stay on my feet, clearly a flaw with the people who made it, and he insists that it's my fault the shoe won't fit.”

I made the shoe,” he affirmed.

And what a horrendous job you did.” The manager tilted his head back as the woman continued her ridiculous rant. Eventually he cut her off with the usual: “You know what miss? My apologies. If you would please come with me, we'll get you all squared away.”

They disappeared into the back with the woman still bickering, while the manager glanced back at me with annoyance. Not my fault this store attracted these ridiculous people who just wouldn't shut the hell up. Think I want to deal with this crap all day? Statements like : “Excuse me, this is my usual size, but it doesn't fit” and they get outraged when I tell them that suffocating in tight ass outfits are only decreasing the oxygen to their brains and making them stupid. Get the next damn size, and stop trying to bask in your glory days. I hate this job. But when you have a shitty life like mine, you eventually just stop giving a damn, and breathe whenever you aren't piled up with crap. The manager came back out a few minutes later with the lady in tow, carrying a box of the shoes. They rung it up and on her way out she made sure she shot a snarl at me, critisizing me for calling her fat when the manager easily helped her fit the shoe. Dumbass. Everyone who walks out of here falls for this same trick, only looking at the box. She'll never even notice that he actually gave her a size seven in a size six box. I gave her a fake smile before turning and meeting the eyes of Mr. Kemp a breath away from me.

How many times have we been through this.”

I just don't know what you expect me to do with these idiots.”

I expect you to do your damn job!” he exclaimed, “This is the third time this week, and I am getting fed up with your crap.” I always found this part of my job entertaining. The way he made sure to speak loud while stomping his feet and putting in unnecessary hand motions just amused me. He looked like five year old throwing a tantrum in the middle of candy store. I turned my head to meet the eyes of the woman as she walked out the door, smiling at me. By this time, the manager had finished his decree and is at the “Do I make myself clear?” finale of the speech. I sighed and nodded my head. He knows that what he's saying is going in one ear and out of the other. But he doesn't care. He won't admit it, but my attitude is the reason this store gets as much money as it does. Every one I talk to ends up buying shoes just to throw it in my face for a couple of seconds as they walk out the door. Plus, these high class women love to send their friends along to piss me off, getting a kick when an employee gets scolded like a six year old who fed the animals in a zoo despite the big ass sign and multiple warnings. And all the while, good ol Mr. Kemp here just has to flap his arms like a dying seagull and bark crap about integrity and courtesy and boom...business is booming.

He walked to the back of the store while I went back to the register to stare at the clock for the last few minutes of my workshift. Eight o' clock could not be arriving any slower than it was. It's like time wanted someone else to walk through the door that was going to bother me. I don't even get why people come here. Across the mall was a brand new shoe store that loved dealing with people's shit all day. And I'm pretty sure there was some overly charming forty year old bald guy in there who slung corny pickup lines to every woman that walked through. Sure the jokes were horrible, but it's the enthusiasm that customers love, and quite frankly, all I wanted to do was just hold my head to this counter and hope that once I picked it up, the clock had hit the next hour. Speaking of which...oh another customer.

The eyes of a strangely tall man blocked my view. He reminded me of the corny black -market dealers in movies who came out dark corners in parking garages dressed in full black trench coats to sell something weird like body parts. Wait a second. Were his eyes clouds? Either I was high as shit despite not smoking a day in my life, or his eyes were just strange as shit. I really hoped it was the former, because I'm pretty sure I was looking at a pair of blue clouds inside of glossy glass instead of pupuls.

Mr. Anderson,” he spoke.

What the hell? How does this guy know my name?

Uh, do I know you?” I asked, knowing damn well I don't know any goddamn body who spoke like The Oracle from The Matrix and had goddamn clouds for eyes.

He held out his hand and a small orb appeared in his hand.

No, but you will. Soon.”

I don't know why my first reaction was to hold my hands in the air like he was robbing the store. This had to be a freakishy surreal dream. Shit doesn't appear out of thin air. And if it does, I don't want any part of it.

Look, I don't know who you are or what kind of crap you got going on, but if you aren't buying shoes, then I can't help you,” I contested

I'm aware. At your current skill you can't even help yourself. When they finally decide to get you, you'll realize that I'm the one who's helping you.”

Alright, there's still has a good chance that this is just an extremely well thought out, detailed episode of Punk'd.

Turner!” my manager called from the back. I turned my head as he came strutting out of the back pausing when he saw me.

Why the hell are you holding your hands up?”

I turned to find the mysterious man gone. Why am I not surprised? Show up, spout some crap about destiny and then vanish before anyone else notices your here and leave me looking like I'm bat shit crazy.

I sighed. “Just....entertaining myself...I guess.” I turned before he could say something and started getting my stuff. I'm pretty sure he stood there for a few minutes staring at me, but eventually, he disappeared once again into the back to do whatever it was he did in the back. I grabbed my bag, and walked out of the store where I groggily walked through the mall to one of the back entrances that led to the parking lot. I still couldn't tell whether that whole thing was real or not. I went back over it my head again and again until I pulled up to my apartment thirty minutes later. Bah. Who cares? Cold beverage and a video game was all I needed right now.

The End

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