(Zimbits, AU, 3.7K, click “read more” for the whole fic.)
“Thanks. You can put it on the counter in the kitchen.”
That had been Jack’s first mistake.
It wasn’t so much the words he said, but rather the fact that he’d said them in French.
However, to Jack’s credit, he had been in the middle of revising a chapter when he’d heard the knock on his door, and the fact that he hadn’t had any caffeine yet due to the broken coffee maker had thrown off his entire morning.
He had been been expecting Georgia, the lady he rented the cabin from, to be standing on his door step. However, instead of the landlord, he got a blond guy with wide, brown eyes staring back at him.
There was a sort of gurgle of surprise and a nervous giggle from the other guy for a moment before he blurted, “Hi, I’m your new housekeeper!”
Jack raised an eyebrow, but didn’t say anything in his confusion. Francine, Georgia’s wife, usually stopped by once every couple of days to tidy up the place, but neither of the two ladies had mentioned anything about a new hire.
Jack must have been lost in thought for a moment too long because the other guy took this as a sign that Jack didn’t speak English. “Uh, you know, cleaning?” He mimed a sweeping action and then pointed at Jack. “Ummm, je… travaille pour Georgia?” he said in a truly horrendous accent.
Jack gave an impatient nod of his head.
“Je m’appelle Eric or you can call me Bitty. Actually, je m’appelle Bitty,” he said proudly with his hand out.
There was something about the other guy’s candidness that made Jack pause, or maybe he had been trapped in a cabin for too long, but he reached out and took the handshake.
Being present with another person is such a spiritual experience, so intimate and visceral, so healing and warm. Even the most mundane interactions become profound when we lay down the armor of our preconditioned roles and simply flow truthfully into the moment.