Purposely getting your coffee order wrong
Original prompt: I purposely get your coffee order wrong just so you’ll talk to me again
There is not much about working at Starbucks that Clarke particularly enjoys. It is almost always crowded, with long lineups. She is constantly on her feet. Customers are rude. She frequently mis-spells people’s names (Why is there even a ‘B’ in the name Siobhan if it is pronounced sh-vonne?). She frequently has to remind herself that she is working here over the summer to save up for her semester abroad next year.
Despite all of this, there is one definite perk to the job that makes it worth it, and that perk is named Lexa.
The first time Lexa walks in, Clarke does not mean to get her order mixed up. It’s just that it is 8.30 in the morning on a Monday, and this attractive stranger in a very form-fitting suit is looking at her all intense-like when she orders her soy milk concoction, and Clarke may or may not have been lost in the forest green of her eyes. So, obviously, she does not hear the order correctly (but she does, of course, hear the name correctly). A few moments later, Lexa comes storming back to the counter to complain, her eyes burning holes into Clarke’s skin. Clarke sheepishly fumbles an apology and rushes to re-make the order. She gets it right the second time round, at least. She draws a smiley face on the lid and writes the word ‘sorry’.
The next morning, when Lexa walks in at around the same time, Clarke makes sure to pay extra attention as Lexa gives her the same order once again. “Try not to mess it up this time, Clarke,” Lexa says after glancing down at Clarke’s name tag. It is not entirely rude, and Clarke thinks she might even be teasing her a little. Clarke gulps. She gets the order right, and draws another smiley face on the lid before announcing soy no whip mocha frappuccino for Lexa. Lexa grabs her drink and walks off to a table, busying herself reading through some sort of files. In the many times that Clarke is able to glance over at her, Lexa does not once look up at her. When Clarke looks again, Lexa is gone, and Clarke is left feeling disappointed.
On the third day, Clarke gets the order wrong on purpose. As expected, Lexa comes back up to the counter to complain. She is not quite so hostile this time, and she waits patiently for her drink. Clarke fights to contain the grin that threatens to spread across her face. She writes out another ‘sorry’ and draws a smiley face.
Lexa comes in every weekday morning from then on, and Clarke periodically messes up Lexa’s order. Not every single time, though, because that would be a bit too obvious. There would also be the danger that Lexa would simply stop coming here if Clarke always got her order wrong.
They begin talking, both when Clarke initially takes her order, and also when Lexa comes back to get it fixed if Clarke has gotten it wrong. Lexa tells her that she is an executive at some sort of software development company. She often talks about issues with coding and programming. Clarke does not even know how to properly restart her wifi without messing it up, but she listens intently, all the while nodding along.
Clarke tells Lexa about her plans to go abroad to study in Australia for a semester next year. She tells her that she really wants to see a kangaroo, but she’s totally not stereotyping Australia in any way.
Clarke suddenly no longer dreads waking up early to come to work.
The eighteenth time Lexa comes in is also the first time that she smiles at Clarke. Like, properly smiles. Not just that half-smirk, lip-sort-of-curling-upwards thing that she sometimes does. Clarke gets the order correct and draws a little heart on the lid, and this heart is what draws that elusive smile. When Clarke turns around with a goofy grin on her own face, Raven looks at her like she’s just lost her mind.
The twenty-third time, Raven tells Clarke that enough is enough. When Lexa is standing off to the side to wait for her order, Raven grabs the cup bearing Lexa’s name on it from Clarke’s hands and scribbles Clarke’s number on the side. She then adds a smiley face for good measure. Clarke freezes and does not want to be the one to hand it to Lexa, but Raven silences her with a glare and tells her to woman the hell up.
Clarke does not need to announce the drink, as Lexa automatically comes forward as soon as they make eye contact. Clarke hands Lexa the cup and quickly turns away to greet the next customer, too nervous to make conversation. She misses the slight frown on Lexa’s face at this. Lexa leaves right when Clarke is completely swamped with customers. She is not able to say a quick goodbye as she usually does. Clarke tells herself that it is stupid to be so disappointed.
On her break, Clarke sits alone in the back room in a sour mood and sips on a free ice cap. She pulls out her phone to pass the time, and her heart almost stops when she turns on the screen. There is a text from an unknown number.
I was wondering how many times you would mess up my order on purpose before you finally gave me your number.
Clarke cannot stop smiling for the rest of the day.