Storefront window displaying women’s clothing, six mannequins wearing dresses and a suit, women’s dresses hanging on back wall, mirrors, lamps, potted plants and vases of flowers also in the window display. Written on the outside awning: “4145-Fit Rite Shoppe-4145.”
Harvey C. Jackson Collection.
Courtesy of the Burton Historical Collection, Detroit Public Library
Sometimes Neil dreams of the past. Sometimes the dreams are so vivid he can smell his mother’s corpse as it burns, so vivid he can hear wit absolute clarity the clang of his father’s ax, so vivid he can see the metal glint off Lola’s knife as she carves his arms to ribbons.
Sometimes he can feel Riko’s knife as it slips beneath his skin, as he hits him until blood fills his mouth, as he makes him run plays until Neil is past the point of pain. It’s like he’s paralyzed, unable to move, unable to fight back.
He doesn’t realize he’s dreaming until his eyes are snapping open, his gaze landing on a hardened face with messy blonde hair, steady hands on his shoulders.
He’s pretty sure someone is screaming, and it takes a moment for him to understand that it’s him, but then Riko’s knife is back, his matches are back, his fists are back, and Neil is powerless beneath him, just as he was the first time, and he can’t stop. He can’t stop his own voice, just as he couldn’t stop Riko’s torture. It lasted so long, god, it lasted so long. Days and days and days and weeks, time running on and slowing down and stretching out.
Then strong arms are wrapping around him, and he’s being pulled against someone’s chest; he knows from the feel of them it isn’t violent, that it’s meant for comfort.
this is really old and its been sitting in my wips since forever but this is for @jiilys because nothing i ever do will ever stop being for you and even though i wrote this when i was trying to be like you its ok because i dont think i’ll ever stop trying to be like you
Nothing makes sense to me anymore. You walk with me to Potions even though it’s on the other side of the school and I know for a fact that you have Divination right now. I can’t stop looking at you. Every time I do it’s like being jolted awake, and all of a sudden I am 14 and staring at your collarbones, like, holy shit, James, when did you get tall? Your grin is crooked one side when Mulciber socked you in the jaw after you cursed him for calling Sirius a traitor. There’s a chip on one of your canines and when you wink at me it turns my insides to water, but I’d never tell you that. I think I am close to dissolving when I am around you.
My stomach tightens into a fist when I catch you staring at me in Transfiguration. Every time I quench down on hope it sparks an ache somewhere in my body, behind my right knee, the hollow at the base of my throat, the tips of my fingers. Somewhere along the way we take a trip to the beach and I can’t process the thought of you, glorious and tan and seawater glistening all over you. I try to hate you, because that would make everything so much easier. I hate your stupid face and your stupid hair and the way you call my name. You dunk me in the ocean and saltwater fills my nostrils and it is so much less painful that the feel of your bare hands on my waist.
I am trying to paint my nails in the dorm when you knock on the door and muscle your way in, throwing yourself down on the bed and complaining about homework. You make it seem so easy, staring at the ceiling as though bounding into my dorm room at 3:00pm on a Monday afternoon is completely normal. I can see the underside of your jaw from where I am sprawled on the carpet. I wonder what it would feel like underneath my lips. I manage to kick over the bottle of nail polish and it spills over the carpet, the colour of blood, like a stain that will never come out, like you, like this immovable weight on my chest when you stoop to help me clean up the mess. Nothing is messier than the tangle of veins and arteries looping around my heart, beating a tattoo against my chest. Your breath tickles my nose. I am blinded by what I cannot have, and it is the hazel in your eyes and the soft sweep of your cupid’s bow and the way you bark out blatant laughter on the uptake, like I am glorious, but I am wretched, because I want to feel your lower lip between my teeth.
Sometimes I think it would be easier if we had stayed friends, because now there is a barren landscape between friends and where I want to be, which is nestled in the region of your neck and shoulder. You kick me under the table in Charms and I lean over to pinch you. You have your shirtsleeves rolled up and I can see veins cording your wrist. I can handle an E on my Charms exam but I cannot handle this. I cannot handle the way you are looking at me. We end up having a pinching war and Flitwick gives us both detention, but it is worth it. It is worth it because you laughed and the sound of it is like shockwaves, keeping me awake.
You are like an itch that I cannot scratch. I blast Blondie in the dormitory at 8:00pm on a Saturday night to flood out all the thoughts of you. If you were a ghost you’d be a filmy apparition in gossamer thread and cheeky smiles. My thoughts always seem to stray to you like a default, as though it is normal to be thinking about what you look like without a shirt on. We go to Hogsmeade and I gaze in every storefront window so I can catch your reflection without having to look at you.
I start to have dreams. Dreams that wake me up in the dorm in the early hours of the morning in a sweaty, gasping mess. I should be thinking about famine and war and my Transfiguration test next week but last night I dreamt that you planted a terrarium in the space between my ribs. I fight my way into sleep and it’s fucking delightful and I enjoy it, because you are everywhere in my head and I don’t have to think about it. The thought of you seeps all the way to the ends of my fingers and I itch to hold you for real, completely. It’s so much easier to call you a git and kick your shin on the way to Herbology but I rarely see any colours anymore apart from the hazel of your eyes.
The other day you paid me out for liking Simon and Garfunkel and I almost thanked you for it. Instead I punched you almost hard enough to expel all source of feeling from my knuckles. I am wasteless for you, inexhaustible for you. You leave me breathless, listless, like I have been knocked out, like I am punch drunk. Pretending becomes easy. I do it all the time. For example, today I pretended that I wasn’t perturbed by your knee touching mine under the table in the Great Hall. I can pretend that I don’t quake with the thought of you, neglect to quiver like something waifish and insubstantial when I’m around you, that the touch of your hand on my upper arm doesn’t send my nerves into overdrive.
Avery called out to me on the way back from the library the other day and it shouldn’t affect me but it does. I can’t even remember what he said because I was drowning in anger and spite but somehow he’s planted a vision in my mind of what it would be like without you and it is scaring the shit out of me. I can’t stop thinking about what would happen if that were true, if at some point under the thumb of this war I lost you and I cannot stand it. I want to run to you, hold you beneath my hands but I don’t because you should not miss something that you never had. Instead I sit in the dormitory at 1:00am because if I go to sleep I know this will haunt me worse than you did, and I am shaking and pale and sweating and the gentle padding of your footsteps down the staircase doesn’t help. ‘Lily,’ you say, and then you are crossing the room to me because I bet you can see my hands vibrating where they’re clutching a blanket around me and you are saying, ‘Lily, Lily, oh my God, are you ill? What’s wrong?’ A crease furrows between your brows and I am shaking my head you are clutching me tightly, so tightly, like you’re afraid I will shatter without you there.
A few days later you corner me after Charms, and I am bright and wieldy and I have been sleeping better since you stroked my hair until I fell asleep, but you look burdened, and you are asking me what happened to me to make me frightened and pale at 1:00am in the dormitory. Somehow I clamour out with an answer something like, ‘I lost you in my head,’ and it doesn’t make sense but you have my head between your hands and you are murmuring to me, saying that I will never loose you, not so long as I live. Then you ask me what made me so ill, because you think I may have given it to you, and I am giggling and laughing and you are holding me to your chest and breathing comes easy with the reminder of your heartbeat under my hands.
Summary: Dean gets hit with a curse and you’re the only person that he can talk to.
Characters: Dean x Reader, Sam, Cas, OC George
Word Count: 2922
A/N: I wrote this for @wheresthekillswitch and @trexrambling Crack It Baby Challenge. My prompt was “I’m pretty sure there’s a law against removing your pants in public." It will be bolded in the fic.
If you’ve never heard of the movie Mannequin please watch this. And don’t judge me, the eighties were weird, ok? I actually worked in display and merchandising for years because this movie made hanging out in a department store after hours look like the best time ever.
Thank you to @pinknerdpanda for betaing the beginning of this story and thank you to @hannahindie for polishing it up. You ladies are wonderful!
You worked on the new mannequin all day. You were tired of the faceless weirdo ones
the store had been using forever so you made a bet with George; if the real
looking one got more attention he’d let you make more. You knew exactly how you wanted him to look;
tall, sandy brown hair, full lips and green eyes. You sigh to yourself as you think of him; the
man from ‘that one hot summer’ in college a million years ago.
That night you drive to the store ready to work on the new
display with George.
“Here’s the new mannequin,” you say setting it down.
George looks him up and down. “Mmm, maybe you can make me one.”
You laugh, rolling your eyes. “I’m gonna start setting up.”
“Ok, I’ll be there in a bit.
You pick it up and walk over to the window, your thoughts
occupied with the next display. You
stand the mannequin up looking him over.
He really is perfect, you think to yourself as you pick out a hat to put
“What the hell?”
“Holy fuck, what?!” you scream.
The now-alive mannequin is gripping your shoulders, “Where
am I? How did I get here?” the tall,
gorgeous, used-to-be mannequin asks.
“Dean?” you pause, catching your breath. “I’m hallucinating. All these late nights have finally made me crazy,”
you mumble. “The most vivid
hallucination ever,” you say touching his face.
“Hey,” Dean says touching where your hand just was.
“How are you alive?”
“Uh, what? I am alive!
How did I get here?”
“Dude, I hate to break it to you but you were a mannequin
about ten seconds ago.”
“A mannequin, see,” you gesture around you, “storefront
He looks down at what he’s wearing and a look of disgust and
surprise crosses his face. He starts to
undo the button of his pants.
“And, I’m pretty sure
there’s a law against removing your pants in public,” you say, holding up
What’s up, party people?
I tell ya’, I always had a hunch Barry saw me as a potential best man –
or best mate, as Julian would say –
but now it’s official. When he and Iris
tie the knot I’ll be there ready to rock the most epic best man speech ever heard
on any Earth! This promises to be some high level adulting and I have to make
sure I look the part. Even though, the
couple hasn’t set the date, I found myself looking into the mirror –
fantasizing about the occasion – and decided your boy needed to step up his
fashion game. To put it simply, it was
time to dress like “a real grown up” as Harry would say. So I cracked open my limited
edition Green Arrow piggy bank and hit up the Central City Mall to buy some new
It’s been a hot minute since I hung around the mall, and I
was bombarded by youths, elderly mall walkers (gotta get that heart rate up!),
and pushy bargain hunters. It reminded
me of the classic zombie mall sequence from Dawn
of the Dead (freak-ay!) But I then spotted
some kids hanging by the food court, goofing off. They made me nostalgic for my old mallrat
days. Ah, the memories. I resisted the
urge to hit up the video game store and headed straight for some upscale
clothing shops. Before I knew it I was
in my own Pretty Woman montage of
trying on baller outfits. Slacks and new
leather shoes? Check. Check. Silk
buttoned down shirt? For days. Suave
sports coat? You know it. Suddenly I was
strutting the mall, turning heads left and right. I stopped at a storefront and looked at the
fashionable man before me. Turns out I
clean up real nice until…
Two kids from the food court ran past me, scuffing my shiny
new leather loafers. I turned to see a
security guard chasing after them. I
ducked down a hallway where no one could see and opened a quick breach and
popped out right in front of the kids. I
told them to slow their rolls and asked why they were being chased. The kids looked scared and pleaded that they
weren’t doing anything wrong – they were pretending they were Flash and Kid
Flash on the hunt for a meta. I have to
say, I was touched, just the security guard caught up to us. He barked at the kids – “no running allowed!”
When I told the guard they were only emulating the heroics
of The Flash and Kid Flash, the security guard softened. Turns out, he was also a big fan and let the
kids off win a warning. The kids thanked
me and said they never expected a grown up to be so cool. They disappeared into the mall, probably to
hit up a Spencer’s Gifts like I did back in the day.
On my way out, I caught a glimpse of myself in a storefront
window. I saw the reflection of a sharp-dressed,
serious man and realized I was kidding myself.
This is isn’t me. I’m fine at
being an adult, but in my own way, going by my own rules. So I returned all the
clothes and stopped at the food court’s Big Belly Burger for fries and a shake,
in my Cisco-approved wardrobe. And Barry
and Iris will be cool with whatever threads I decide to rock on the big day.
(God I submitted like two or three asks and a submission within the past two months I feel like I’m posting so much here I’m so sorry. D| ) This is gonna be long, and I apologize, but I’ve never dealt with this type of person or situation before and I’m entirely unsure of what to do. tl;dr at the bottom.
I work at a public library. There’s this woman who seems very well put together- dressed fairly well, straight posture, etc., but every single worker here has commented for me to be wary because there’s something “off” about her. I’ll call her M. And it took a while, but boy, did I start to notice it. So far, since I have started at the library, M has…
Asked workers and volunteers questions by getting so close you can feel her breath on your face.
Gotten angry with the circulation desk workers because we charge $3 for a replacement library card (your first one is free.) because she thought that they could write a new number on the back of her current one (numbers and barcodes are printed directly on the cards). She wanted them to write a new number because her crystals said it wasn’t a good number for her.
Sits in one of our armchairs and literally stares at us for at least an hour at a time.
Asked my coworker a question. Which was answered, no problem. M started walking to the front doors. Got to the doors. Stopped. Turned around and STORMED back to the reference desk, slammed both her hands on the counter as she leaned in really close, and demanded my coworker tell her exactly “how you got your hair like that!”
Tried to come behind the desk to look over our shoulders and see if we were using the right websites to find information for her.
We release the printed pages at the desk after people pay for them. They come out face down. M, at the time, had a cast on her arm. She kept looking at the cast and then at us, as if she wanted us to ask what happened. When no one took the bait, she decided to say that we better not look at her printed pages because they’re legal documents about her broken arm and it’s her personal business and she is not legally obligated to show them to anyone and we can be sued for reading them. :|
Among various other incidents that weren’t like, “you need to get out of the library” disruptive, but have caused workers to become very uncomfortable.
M also likes to try and trap librarians and volunteers into conversations when they are not on the clock.
Incidents that were specific to me include:
On Halloween, we are allowed to wear costumes, granted they aren’t skimpy/gory. I wore my unicorn kigurumi to work, and also brought my unicorn head mask in case my boss or our public relations committee wanted pictures for our website (I’m not really a picture person.). I was sitting at the reference/info desk with only the hood to my kigurumi up and we got the same kind of “walk past and then rush back” reaction my coworker got for her hair, only without the slamming of the desk. M asked me if she could take my picture. I said “no.” Had that been the end of it, whatever. But she wouldn’t take no for an answer. I got everything from “you’re so cute though” to “my sister in law likes unicorns and [insert semi-coherent rambling here].” Finally, my coworker flagged one of our security officers and he started heading over and M left.
When M had the cast on her arm, I was covering circulation one day. She asked if we had a bag, and I told her that we sell reusable canvas bags ($2). She asked if she could have one, I got the sheet out of the cash drawer to record the purchase, and she asked what I was doing. Then she said I was discriminating against her by charging her for a bag because “I have a broken arm and I shouldn’t be forced to pay.”
Some time ago, on a day I wasn’t scheduled to work, I took the bus into town to stop at the local art store and grab some sushi. Our bus terminal is a quite large building with storefront-styled windows all on the front and most of the way down the side. It is a straight shot from one street to the next. Normally, I cut through the bus terminal. However, when I neared the entrance, I saw M sitting inside and reading a book. She hadn’t seen me, but I still didn’t want to risk it, so I went around the building. Note, I’m wearing my giant-ass bright green headphones, and looking at my phone while replying to an email. As I get about half through the walkway to the next street, I catch M in the corner of my eye. Unsure of if she noticed me, I turned to go to the opposite side, and she actually speeds up and makes a beeline for me, catches up to me, taps me on the shoulder, and starts trying to talk to me as if I’d hear her over my music. Not really sure of what to do as the woman already makes me uneasy, I just point to my headphones and cell phone like I’m on a phone call and walk off quickly.
Today I had two incidents with her. I was assisting a student with her resources for a paper. She was having trouble finding non-reference books that she would be able to check out on the subject she needed, so I was discussing the online resources we offer with her. I’m a generally soft spoken person and she was right in front of me, so no problem. We’re quietly discussing them and I show her how to access them and then she leaves. Five minutes later, M comes over from her seat well across the main lobby, slams one of our database brochures and our bookmark that looks like the header of our website on the desks, and demands I tell her about the online resources “you told that girl about.” I’m just sitting here wondering how the hell she even HEARD me. There’s no way, unless she was either using a sound amplifier or she was hyperfocused on our conversation.
The second incident today was when I was on my dinner break. I left the library because my grandmother had asked me to see if there were any Peeps on clearance, being the day after Easter and all. I get out of work, get to the local Aite Rid, and grab a few packs for her. Right when I come out of the store- BAM, there’s M, sitting on the bench near the exit and staring in the direction of the store’s doors. Again, I’ve got my headphones on (don’t worry! I wear them around my neck in stores and only put them back on after I’m done buying my things!). She notices me and picks her things up like she’s going to get up to come talk to me, and I just go right in the other direction and cut through a department store to get right back to work. Fortunately, I think she’s gone for the day.
I’m really unsure of what to do. She hasn’t done anything outright ban-worthy in the library. I also don’t want to sound like I’m being an asshole in case she has a mental illness, but she genuinely makes me uncomfortable- especially since I’m unsure of what do do if she approaches me when I’m on the clock. I can’t really say what I wish I could (Which would be: “Please leave me alone, you’re making me uncomfortable.” or something…), and I don’t know if she’s the type to like, come in to the library and try to start something when I AM on the clock. Other workers in both the circulation and reference departments are also creeped out by her and we’re really not sure what to do because she hasn’t done anything that we really needed security for or anything.
Does anyone know how to handle something like this? She seems harmless and all, but you never really know. Anyone can lash out physically. I don’t think she’s targeting me specifically- as other workers have had similar “off the clock” complaints with her.
Patron at my library is massively creepy. Invades personal space WAY too far (we can literally feel her breathing on us if we’re not safely behind a desk), tries to get behind desks, tries to trap us into awkward conversations, approaches us in odd manners when we’re off the clock, has asked to take pictures of me, has also accused me of being discriminatory when I was going to charge her for the bags we sell as one of our ways of funding the library, and various other incidents. I’m unsure of what to do because she legitimately creeps me out and I’m not sure if she would be the type to lash out physically.
I’m not sure if anyone here would have tips on how to deal with her, other than to stay within sight/earshot of a coworker or even a patron when she’s near.
Sorry for this being long, but having two incidents with her in one day kind of freaked me out.
Author’s Note: Day 5 of 20. Feedback? Always welcome! (And if you guys requested these stories, let me know if you like them?)
Word Count: 1,144
You walked back to the table from the restroom, willing
yourself to make it through the rest of the night. Your best friend had dragged
you out on a double date, and here you were, stuck in a booth beside William.
He seemed nice enough, but the conversation was dull and you didn’t seem to
have much in common. You had come to help your friend, to be her wing-woman;
but she seemed to be doing fine on her own. Sliding back into booth, your rolled
your eyes when you glanced across the table; your friend practically on the lap
of her date.
“For fuck’s sake.” you muttered under your breath. You
thought you were being quiet enough in this noisy restaurant, but William had
“Do you want a ride home?” he whispered, clearly
uncomfortable with the situation at hand.
“Oh God, yes.” you blurted out. “Sorry, not because of you.
This whole… situation… it’s just weird.” you clarified, grabbing your coat
and pulling yourself out of the booth. You shrugged it on, William sliding out of
the booth behind you. You noticed he was taller than you had originally noticed in the dim
lighting of the restaurant. You took a step towards the door, a voice stopping you in your tracks.
“Where are you guys going?” your friend asked, finally
breaking eye contact with her date; realizing you were heading outside.
“Home.” you said, straightening your coat.
“Have fun.” she giggled, wiggling her eyebrows at you at you
“That’s not what I meant.” you muttered, rolling your eyes . “Text me when you
get home.” you sighed, noticing all her attention had gone back to her date
. William tilted his head,
motioning for you to follow him, knowing that any attempts to get her attention
would fail. He held the door for you, exiting the restaurant into the clear
“Thanks for getting me out of there.” you said. “That was so
“I’ve never gone on a date and been so weirded out that I
couldn’t eat.” he agreed. “I’m in the parking garage down on St. Andrew’s.
Sorry it’s so far.” he said. “Everyone in Toronto seems to be out tonight.”
“I don’t mind.” you replied casually. “It’s the first decent
night in Toronto in months.” you pointed out as you followed him down the
street. The spring night was beautiful, people flooding out of their homes
for nice evening; cars buzzing down the street. You glanced at William as you
passed under a streetlight, noticing how handsome he was for the first time all
evening. Maybe your friend had done you a favor after all.
“So, I didn’t learn much about you in there.” he said
looking over at you. “You watch hockey?”
“I do, yeah.”
Silence fell over the two of you. God, you notice someone is
cute, and words refuse to form. You cursed yourself internally. You took a
breath, trying to continue the conversation. “You’re from Sweden right?”
“My parents are. I was born in Calgary, spent the
summers in Sweden.” he responded, shoving his hands in his pockets.
You walked a few more paces, the uncomfortable silence
palpable. Ugh, maybe you should have stayed at the restaurant and watched your
friend swap spit with her date. Was he awkward, too? Or just uninterested? The
two of you continued down the street, stopping as a train of children came
running out of a brightly lit storefront. Looking
in the window you saw the store for what it was; an ice cream shop.
“We didn’t eat dinner, do you want ice cream?” William offered.
What could be the harm? This whole evening had been strange
to say the least, how could ice cream possibly make it any worse?
“Sure.” you said, hunger pangs hitting you when you stepped
through the door and into the shop; the smell of sweet waffle cones surrounding
you. You stood by the door, each of you studying the expansive menu of milkshakes
and sundaes. After a few moments a
little girl carrying a sundae dish as big as her head walked pushed past you. William’s
eyes followed her as she handed the dish to her mother, crawling into a chair beside
“What was that thing?” William questioned glancing back at
the menu trying to figure it out.
“It’s a banana split.” you responded. “Have you ever had
“I haven’t, it looks legit, though.” he said, eyes wide. “I’d be stuck
doing bag-skates all practice tomorrow if I ate the whole thing.” he said
“Want to share one?” you questioned, the words falling out
of your mouth before you could stop yourself.
“Sure.” he said, seemingly surprised, as the two of you
walked towards the line.
You fished a bill out of your bag, handing it to William who
shook his head. “Don’t worry about it. I’ll take care of it.” he said. “Wanna find us
You stepped outside, the weather too nice to pass up; you
took a seat on one of the metal patio chairs. William appeared a few minutes later, a
banana split, 2 spoons, and a handful of napkins in hand.
“This looks amazing.” he said, tucking himself into the
chair beside you. “You’ve had these before?”
“Yeah, my siblings and I used to make them all the time at
home.” you explained, watching as William took a bite.
“How many siblings do you have?”
“Two brothers and a sister, all older.” you said.
“I’m from a big family, too.” he nodded. “I have a brother
and 3 sisters. It was always loud growing up.”
It was like the floodgates had opened. After finding common
ground, the conversation flowed; everything from school, to hockey, your
families, hobbies. The two of you managed to knock out the whole sundae,
looking at your phone you realized you and William had been talking for the
past hour. You both stood, William throwing the trash away; you continued your
walk to his car.
“I hope that since I was able to eat half of that banana
split, it ensures you don’t get bag-skated tomorrow.” you smiled, stealing a
glance at him as you walked down the sidewalk.
“You’re a hero.” he replied. “I should be fully functioning
tomorrow at practice because of you.” he laughed. A group of teenagers was
coming down the street towards you; William took a step closer to you, getting out
of their way. His hand knocked into yours, his warm skin brushing across yours.
“Sorry.” he mumbled, a faint pink tinge colored his face. You caught his hand
in yours as he stepped away, tangling your fingers with his. Heat rose in your
cheeks as he caught your eye, smiling.
“Would you want to go out again?” he asked, looking at
Request: Hello friend! Congratulations on 400 followers! You deserve all of them and more. I’d like to submit a possible request for William Nylander! Maybe where you go on your first date and you’re both nervous and awkward but it turns out well? Anyways, I hope you have a good night! <3
(Please come off anon and say hello?! Thank you so much!!!)
I worked in a shitty clothing store in the local mall. It’s the kind of place that hires high schoolers and, over the summer, college kids. It’s minimum wage, so our employers didn’t expect much. Honestly, they just hoped we didn’t come in drunk. Hell, if our eyes were a little red, they’d look the other way, if you know what I mean.
Which is why the pranks continued for so long. It started out small. Jumping out from behind doors. Hiding in clothing racks. Prank calling the store on days off. It was funny and petty and stupid.
That’s the key word again – stupid.
It was my coworker, Spencer. He’s the reason the pranking eventually came to an end about six months ago. And the reason that I eventually quit my job.
See, none of us were exactly rocket scientists. Most of us were a little dumb for the sole fact that we were teenagers. But Spencer was dumber than the rest of us. I mean, that kid was a few eggs short of a dozen. Not college material and probably would never move away from our hometown. But we liked him just the same. He was good for a laugh.
But, God… he took it too far.
It happened on Tuesday. I was working from three to nine, which meant I was on closing duty. I mopped the storefront, cleaned the windows, took out the trash and threw the cardboard boxes from inventory into the cardboard compactor. I locked up and did a quick inventory check. Most importantly, I did it all by myself.
See, Spencer was supposed to be working with me. He was supposed to come in at noon and leave at eight. It’s not uncommon for someone to close alone, but usually there’s another person there for part of the evening. It makes finishing closing duties easier. I can’t take out the trash while I’m helping customers, you know.
He’d been there when I came in at two, but at some point he’d left without letting me know and without clocking out. I was pretty irritated – I wondered if maybe he was playing some kind of joke on me. Spencer wasn’t the type to think things through – he might very well have thought that abandoning me on the night shift would be hilarious.
I called Spencer but didn’t get an answer. I called my manager and let her know that Spencer had ducked out on me. I expected Spencer to return my call or at least text, but he didn’t. The next time I worked – two days later – I asked my manager, but she hadn’t heard from Spencer either.
Now, Spencer might not be the brightest bulb in the box, and yes, sometimes he forgets his schedule or messes up and doesn’t come in for a shift. But he isn’t the kind to just shirk his responsibilities. If he misses work, he accepts the blame for it and makes it up to his coworkers. He doesn’t make excuses and it doesn’t happen often. That’s why none of us employees really have a problem with him. So the fact that he was completely MIA left me a bit confused. If he’d left me there as a joke, he would have confessed to it by now. He wouldn’t have stopped coming in to work entirely.
I didn’t get worried until the next week when Spencer’s mother officially filed a Missing Persons report.
She came into the store to talk to the manager. I saw them disappear into the office – which is really just a cramped closet in the back room with a dusty old desktop computer – and could barely make myself focus until they came back out. Mrs. Damson – that is to say, Spencer’s mom – had tears in her eyes. I heard my manager, Kelly, assure her that they’d check the security footage. Then, Kelly asked me to come to the back office. She’d never done that before.
It turns out that I was the last person to see Spencer before he went missing.
At least, the last known person. His mother had seen him at the house before he went to work that Tuesday. He’d never come home. Spencer had been working with me and only me – Tuesdays are slow and Kelly had been busy along with the rest of the managers, so there’d been no manager present. The last time I remembered seeing Spencer was around four-thirty when he’d gone to use the employee restroom in the back. That’s the last anyone had heard of him.
I told Kelly what I remembered and she told me she was going to try to get her hands on the security footage. Most likely, Spencer had just high-tailed it with some of his buddies. Impromptu road trip or something, hell if I know. Kelly assured me over and over that the most likely scenario was that Spencer was completely fine and had just done something unexpected… unexpected and stupid, but then again, this was Spencer we were talking about. Stupid was implied.
I let that placate me for the most part, although I was still nervous the rest of the night. I managed to distract myself for most of the next day, playing video games with a few buddies. It wasn’t until mid-evening when I got a call from Kelly.
“Hey, Conner, can you come to my apartment? There’s… something I want to talk to you about.”
god i know i said my anime kylux days were over but after drawing this @kdazrael suggested i watch antique bakery which i DID i marathoned it last night and it spawned this evil hell au you’ll probably be seeing more of
Arthur grabbed a handful of Merlin’s tunic and dragged him down the sidewalk to the storefront window. Beyond the glass stood a statue wearing long blue robes speckled with stars, and a pointed blue hat covered with crescent moons.
“Is that-?“ Arthur gasped, and his face was going to split with his grin, absolutely it was, he could feel it. “That’s- It’s a-“
“Merlin the Magician Costume, yes,” Merlin said impatiently, reading the sign at the base of the statue.
Arthur looked at him with wide delighted eyes, then burst out laughing.
Merlin gave a loud put-upon huff. “It’s not that funny.”
Arthur laughed so hard that he had to bend forward, hands on knees. He was barely able to speak because of it. “You simply must- get those- robes-”
“I already have them.“
Arthur’s head jerked up. “What?”
Merlin crossed his arms over his chest. Defiant and embarrassed in equal measure, judging by the pink in his cheeks. “I said, I have them.”
Arthur pictured Merlin actually wearing the catastrophe of a costume, and burst out laughing again, even harder than before.
“You are being such an arse,” Merlin said, pulling Arthur by the arm back to his horse and shoving him toward it.
“I remember!” Arthur said, as he climbed back into his saddle. “The night I came back from Avalon! When you were still an old man! You had them on then!”
“I wear them for the Solstice Festival,” Merlin informed him as he climbed on his own horse. “It’s tradition,” he added defiantly, before urging his mare down the narrow street between the rows of parked cars.
It took several minutes of chuckling before Arthur got control of himself again. He had to wipe tears from his face, and even rub at his cheeks, because they were actually aching from smiling. He couldn’t even remember the last time that had happened.
“Merlin?” he called.
“Do you have the hat too?”
“You do, don’t you!”
“Yes, all right? God you are such a-!”
“I think I shall command you to wear it,“ Arthur called, joyful at the mere thought of it, because oh my yes, Merlin in that hat-
“Not a chance,” Merlin said over his shoulder, though his own amusement was plain in his voice now.
Wear Your Heart on Your Skin (2500 Follower Giveaway Fic #17)
For @a-moment-of-such-peace, who requested a soulmate AU. I was given a few options for pairings, and I’m sure no one will be surprised that I went with E/R.
E/R, modern soulmate AU, soulmate tattoos.
“Could this be any dumber?” Enjolras demanded, holding his shirt up and looking in the mirror at the tattoo that had appeared on his side at some point over the night.
Combeferre sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose. “It’s a soul mark, Enjolras,” he said patiently. “It’s supposed to be a unique, identifying mark, not a work of art.”
Enjolras glared at him. “I know that,” he snapped, lowering his shirt and crossing his arms in front of his chest. “But it’s still stupid.” He switched his gaze back to the mirror, scowling at his reflection as if he could still see the tattoo. “It looks like some sort of deformed bird.”
“Who is it?” Courfeyrac practically screeched as he ran into Enjolras’s bedroom, excitement clear on his face. “Who is he? Where did you meet? When did you meet? Is he hot? I bet he’s hot!”
While Enjolras just gave him a withering look before slumping over to the bed, Combeferre shook his head slightly to try to signal to Courfeyrac that this was not going to be that kind of conversation. “He didn’t meet anyone,” he told Courfeyrac. “The tattoo just appeared during the night.”
Every morning was the same, a run to the little café down
the street as you quickly made your way to work. The café was simple, a local
establishment, run by an elderly couple with a simple wish to not get overrun
by the Starbucks and other massive coffee chains. You loved seeing the sweet
elderly couple as you made your way to work, the woman would smile kindly at
you as she rang up your usual, a croissant and a coffee to go. It was the same routine
every day, but then one day as you walked up to the store front, a sign hung on
Sadly, there has been
a medical emergency. We are closing down the café indefinitely or until further
notice. We are sorry for any inconvenience we may have caused. Love, the Kims.
You looked at the sign and a sigh escaped your lips.
Sad. Someone said
next to you and you nodded. Looking over, you saw a tall man, his suit crisp
and his eyes focused on the sign.
Yea, I go here all the
time. You murmured and the guy looked at you.
Really? This is one of
my best friend’s grandparents’ place. He said in a roundabout way and you
laughed as you nodded along.
Gotcha, well tell your
friend that I hope everything works out. You replied and he pointed behind
Or you could tell him
yourself. The man said and you gave a glance behind you. Standing not too
far was a guy, his face could only be described as angelic and his eyes seemed
to be downcast as he looked at the storefront. Walking up to the tall man
standing beside you, the grandson smiled.
Namjoon-ah, what are
you doing here? He asked, and the suit clad man patted him on the shoulder.
I wanted to check up on
you, hyung. How’s your grandfather? Namjoon asked and you tried not to
eavesdrop, but you were curious.
Ah, it was a bad fall,
they think they will need to do surgery on his hip, which means a long
recovery. God, I just hate that this happened. He murmured and then made
eye contact with you. You went wide eyed as you immediately felt uncomfortable.
Oh my god, I am so
sorry! You said rapidly and gave a weak smile. I just come here every morning before work and I saw the sign and he
told me that it’s your grandparents place and I’m sorry for listening in. You
blurted out and wanted to smack yourself in the forehead while Namjoon and the
grandson stared at each other with amusement. Now you wanted to crawl in a hole
and never come out from the embarrassment, but right as you were about to slink
away, the grandson smiled.
Well that’s very kind
of you. It’s nice to know that my grandparents made such an impression. Uhm, I’m
Seokjin by the way, but you can call me Jin. He replied in a graceful manner
and you felt your knees go weak as he extended a hand. You took it lightly,
before looking at your watch.
Oh shit, I got to go! You
told him before leaving. He chuckled and then looked at Namjoon.
Did you catch her
name? Jin asked, but Namjoon shook his head. Ah, shit. I wanted to see her again. He muttered before looking
back at the café, still dark with loneliness. Sighing, Jin walked into the café,
and hung up his coat.
You were sprinting to your job, your body seemed to go at
supersonic speed, but your mind was still back at the café wanting to talk to
Y/N! YOU’RE LATE! Your
asshole of a boss seemed to constantly catch you on your bad days. You had been
at this job for almost 2 years and yet no matter how hard you tried, your boss
seemed to have a vendetta against you. It was a simple desk job for an online
food magazine, a blog of sorts that would talk about the latest trends in food
and various recipes. You loved it, well you didn’t love the job, but the actual
website was one you frequented constantly. You had taken the job thinking that
you would be able to write articles, critic restaurants, maybe even share a few
of your recipes, but instead you were stuck getting coffee and doughnuts for
the asshole you called your boss and his cronies.
Sighing a little to yourself, you bowed as you apologized.
I’m sorry, sir. I was
just trying to pick up the coffee, but the shop that I usually go to was
closed. You mumbled and your boss scoffed.
Ah, well good
riddance, that place needed to go, they always burnt the coffee grounds. He
said and his group of cronies laughed behind him. There was a fire that burned,
you could still see the woman’s joyful face as she served you, and now knowing
that her café was being talked about in such a demeaning way set something off.
You wouldn’t know good
coffee if it smacked you in the face. You muttered and your boss stopped,
glaring at you as the cronies tried to stifle their laughter. You crossed your
arms and looked up at the menacing figure. That
coffee is imported from Colombia, and brewed carefully. Let me guess, you want
me to go to the chain shop down the street and buy you some shit latte with too
much sugar. You spat and your boss crossed his arms.
You speak to me with
respect. He ordered and you scoffed.
I’ll speak to you with
respect when I think you deserve it. You retorted and your boss went red
You’re fired. He
said in an infuriated voice and a part of you was expecting that reaction.
Sighing heavily, you nodded and grabbed your things, leaving behind the less
than dream job you had clung onto. As you walked dejected, now realizing you
had just gotten fired from the only source of income you had, you wandered back
to the café. A part of you was hoping that it would magically be open, but you
knew it wasn’t going to be, but then you saw a light on inside. The large storefront
window showed that it was still empty inside, the handwritten sign still hung
on the door, but the kitchen was lit and you could see movement.
Curiosity got the best of you, as you walked up to the door.
First trying the handle, you were surprised when it opened. Looking up and down
the quiet street, you contemplated going in, but when you were curious, nothing
really stopped you. Walking into the shop, you heard the movement in the back
Hello? You called
out. Uhm the door was open, is anyone
here? You asked and Jin’s face popped into the window that looked into the
Oh, hello again! He
said, you were surprised at how cheery he was, a veil of confusion seemed to
overlay his features for a moment, before he smiled brightly. Uhm, one second. He said before
disappearing back into the kitchen, you looked around the empty store, it made
your heart sink as you thought about this place being closed indefinitely. So, how can I help you? Jin asked as he
came out of the kitchen, he was wearing an apron and idly wiping his newly washed
hands onto a cloth that hung from his pocket.
Oh, I just saw that
someone was in here and the door was open. You mumbled as you felt your
curiosity had definitely killed the cat. The embarrassment was traumatizing for
you, but Jin didn’t seem bothered by your unexpected appearance.
Did you have to go
somewhere? He asked and you looked down at your knitted fingers.
Uhm, yea, my job, well
my old job now I guess. You stammered over the words and Jin nodded.
So something happened
at your job? He asked and you sighed.
I got fired. You
said bluntly and he chuckled.
Okay then, well … uhm
what’s your name? He asked and you felt your cheeks blush with
embarrassment once more.
Y/N, my name is Y/N. You
mumbled, he smiled brightly and shook your hand.
Well nice to finally
meet you, Y/N. He said and you shook your head a little in disbelief. Most
guys weren’t like him, he seemed to just breathe positivity and exude confidence.
Actually, there’s a little something that
I think can cheer you up. He continued and disappeared back into the kitchen.
You looked at the wake in which he had left and you were completely in awe, it
was strange how comforting this guy had been in just the little instances you
had met him.
Try this! Jin
sprung out of the kitchen holding a tray of baked goods, little tea cakes
scattered along the plate. You were skeptical as you looked at them, each one a
different pastel color, all of them bite-sized creations. Grandma always said a little sweet always brings a smile to your face. He
smiled and you looked at the beautiful little cakes.
Alright, hmmm I’ll try
this one. You murmured, delicately picking up a little lightly pink colored
cake. The strawberry flavor seemed to subtly dance on your tongue, the light
vanilla frosting meshed perfectly, and the cake was perfectly baked. Oh my god, that’s fantastic! You
exclaimed and Jin smiled.
I am thinking of
reopening the shop, I don’t think my grandparents will be able to, but I don’t
want to sell this place. So I wanted to at least try somethings. Jin
started to ramble and you tried to keep up. Then he stopped suddenly and looked
at you. I need some help with this actually.
He started off slowly and you didn’t really see where it was going. And you recently became unemployed. He
murmured and suddenly you were putting two and two together.
Want to help me out? He
asked and your jaw hit the floor.
Author’s Note: So,
fluffy and sweet … literally. I’m currently watching The Great British Baking
Show (highly recommend) and I have also played the Voltage, Inc. game Finally,
in Love Again (highly recommend lmao), which is set in a bakery, and so this
definitely draws from those two things. Also @hayekangsangbin I wanted to make sure you got
the fluffy Jin fic you wanted and to the people who have felt like Jin doesn’t
get enough love, hopefully this will help. Sorry for the SUPER cheesy first
part, I swear it will get better. Also, SWEET HEART … Like SWEETHEART because like cake and also it’s a pet name for a S/O … okay I’m done - Caroline
This store owned by a man of Japanese ancestry is closed following evacuation orders in Oakland, California, in April of 1942. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, the owner had placed the “I Am An American” sign in the storefront window.