You don’t remember applying for a job here. You don’t remember getting hired. You have a vague memory of coming in for something small. Now you have a name-tag. You are part of the network.
Someone asks where an item is. You know exactly where it’s located. You know where everything is, except the exit.
You’re not sure if the song on the radio ever changes, or if it’s just a loop of vocals chanting words in a language no one understands. When you listen closer everything devolves into white static and you wake in the break room with your manager muttering into her
walkie-talkie. She looks relieved when you sit up. No one mentions the incident again.
“Do you work here?” You are confused. Do you work here? You look down. You wear the uniform. You’re stocking a shelf. You don’t know. It’s been a long time since you wondered.
Company policy requires that you interact with every customer. They pretend not to notice your desperately bright smile and strained tone and you pretend not to notice their white, hungry smiles and the swirling darkness behind their eyes. Everyone is satisfied.
“Have a good day,” you insist. You don’t mean it. They stare at you, grin, and say “You too.” They do mean it. Night comes soon.
A customer demands to speak to the manager. You tremble and call over the radio. She hasn’t lost a challenge yet, but you know her days are numbered.
Your coworker puts in his two week notice. He has a new job, he tells you, his smile too large. Better pay. Weekends off. You watch him disappear into the break room. You’ll never see him again.
The “Employees Only” sign is there for a reason. The creature that roams the warehouse knows not to attack those wearing the uniform. It has no such consideration for trespassers.