She only needed to stop in for a few things: a fictional short story. No matter much Val tried to stick to the list–always a list on decorative stationary to suit her fancy written more so for the look than for the purpose–she could never swallow and digest the urge to shop. As soon as she decided she wanted something, Valerie did not try to talk herself out of buying it either.
So that was how she found herself in the middle of the store with no cart, no basket, and far more than her bruised-up and (quite frankly) poorly exercised arms could comfortably carry on their own. And she still needed to grab that one…last…thing…
“Let me help you with that
Valerie glanced up at the voice close by her head, her tongue poking out from between her lips in concentration or rather in preparation for the Hail Mary attempt of reaching out to snag the journal off the shelf without unloading everything she held onto the floor. A man with dark hair and eyes to match stood at her side, hand extended to grab what she so clearly had her sights set on.
“Oh! Thank you!” She let the bag slip from her wrist back down into her fingers, releasing its constricting hold on the blood flow. A laugh at how ridiculous she must look found a place in her throat, and Valerie smiled. “If you could set it on top of everything else, I can balance it all the way to the register, I think!”