June 19, 2012 by Dropped Ink
My day job is exactly that, a job. Note I say day job as if to imply that I am some caped crusader, or masked marauder by night. Hardly. I spend most nights dreaming about freeing myself of my job and what I will make for dinner that coming weekend. Getting on with it. My job needles daily at me with all its demands and metrics and farcical encouragement. One of the things that gets my butt burning the most is this idea of “lobby management”: basically someone has to stand in the lobby and welcome customers and be sure they know about the latest promotions and they get the service that they need. With that being said, my location lacks the customers needed to make this newest implementation a success. So I spend a vast majority of my time people watching. My job is located in a mall and we are near the doors. I call that area the kiss and cry area. Either some kid is screaming bloody murder or I look out to see a variety of lips locking in stomach wrenching displays of PDA. Do you know people still put their hands in their mates back pocket, mullets still exist, and people allow their children to touch the trash can then consume fatty butter drenched pretzels (complete with trash can finger licks). Ew! Most days it’s the same door sliding effect of in and out. No one particularly interesting. But occasionally I get a day that is packed with book worthy characters. So I stand and stare (I know it’s not nice but I do wear a name tag so that makes it alright) making up stories as the person passes. Shall I share my latest? Okay. I knew you would nod your melon in a gentle forward motion.
Victim 1: An old lady with a distinctive limp.
Story: Arthur sat on on the hot porch with his grandmother snapping the green beans. He could feel every bead of sweat as it formed and rolled down him. The lemonade was past the point of being refreshing and it to had succumbed to the heat and began to separate, melted ice water on top and dull sweet lemonade on the bottom. His Grandmother whom he affectionately call Grannybob or Gbob, was intently focused on her task looking as if they were seated on a porch in Siberia. She had not a single drop of sweat on her. He shook his head dazed, it was a myth how she managed to do this in weather like today. Spirilla the cat had even passed out from the heat, taking on the resemblance of road kill. Grannybob stirred stretched out her leg with a grimace and readjusted in her seat.
Tell me, Arthur hiccuped out.
Grannybob smirked coyly, “Tell you what? What we’re having for desert?”
Cmon Gbob. You know what.
Grannybob raised her eyebrow and smiled lightly. In what language?
Arthur had been learning to speak other languages at the insistence of his grandmother. She had purchased the Rosetta Stone series for him as birthday and Christmas gifts. While he had been learning now for a little over a year he was not really confident in any of his pursuits.
Grannybob frown and re-squared her shoulders as she adjusted herself again.
Please, Arthur added while enlarging his already big brown eyes.
This time I will indulge you. Next time may not be so easy.
First go and get us fresh Lemonade and bring me my purse so I can take my pills.
Arthur hurried through the house to prepare the drinks and locate his grandmothers purse. He returned to his porch seat as quickly as he left. Grannybob slowly sipped her lemonade and chases it with her pills. She set her glass down and turned to face Arthur.
Most people say, if I tell you I will have to kill you. I however, will grant you graces as my grandson and tell you, if I tell you and you tell someone else I will have to kill you. Understood?
Arthur nodded his head quickly.
It was after the war. I was…lets just say abroad.
Which war Gbob?
Does it matter? War is war and all information pertaining to them is worth something to someone. Now, interruptions make for a short memory on the details. Understood?
Arthur nods. He leans forward intently.
It was after the war and I had procured the documents. It seemed like an easy mission. I should have known because it was too easy. I attended the party of Baron W.
She looked to Arthur quick enough and long enough to see him cover his mouth and begin playing with his lip. She smiled with delight.
Oh Arthur it was so lavish. He lived in a castle. I still to this day have never seen stained glasses so ornately decorated or so beautifully done. I danced with him for hours it seemed like. Back then my hair was still red like rubies and my eyes pierced hearts for keeps. He didn’t want me to leave but I knew I had a mission to complete. I finally convinced him to meet me later for more dancing.
I excused my self with the rouse of needing to go to the bathroom. I made my way to the tower where I knew his office was. The door slipped open and the envelope was laying openly on the desk. Arthur this was my first encounter with distrust and pure evil. A few weeks earlier I had been assigned a partner or what I believed was a partner. T as he was known to me was pompous and arrogant. I managed to find some way to handle him and keep him from getting us killed. I grabbed the envelope and made my exit. I managed to make it back to my hotel where I arranged for my pick up. My car came at maybe around midnight. I opened the door to get in the back and to my surprise T was already inside. He was a surprise because he had been given orders to stay behind and monitor the fallout from the missing documents. His observations would help us to pinpoint the next target. I should have never gotten in. But it would not be the first time that orders had changed at the last minute. He began to talk to me. I could feel something was wrong. As we pulled to the hanger he reached in his coat and pulled out a gun. He demanded the documents. Of course I refused and we struggled violently. He struck me several times but I never lost hold or allowed fear to overtake me. I struck him back. Now you want to see fear…you should have seen is face after I delivered his blows.
Gannybob looked to Arthur and they both laughed. Each sipped their lemonade.
I some how managed to get out of the car. I too carried a gun in my pocketbook. The idea of killing a person never appealed to me and I always hoped never to have to draw it. That hope faded with each passing second as he fired shot after shot at me. I took refuge behind some barrels just as the plane started up. The boarding steps were still down and I knew I had only minutes to make it. So I took the chance. I ran making a leap for the last step. A shot rang out and I felt a piercing pain in my leg. I let out a scream. I held firmly with one hand and managed to turn to return fire. I struck T in the chest and saw him go down…
“Mom!”. Arthur’s mother Anita had been standing on the porch listening to her mother tell her heroic tale. Really mother these stories of spies and espionage are simply not good for Arthur. He hangs on your every word. Come on kid go and get washed for dinner.
Anita went into the house allowing the screen door to slam behind her.
Do as your mother says, Grannybob said as she patted Arthur’s hand. Arthur stood to leave and as he did so he turned to face his grandmother.
I believe you Gbob. I really do. You are way to cool to have to lie.
SO….do you see what happens when left to my own devices? Perhaps if you guys enjoy this I will share some more of my tales that spawn from my people watching. I encourage you to people watch see if anyone inspires you. Please try to be inconspicuous, especially of you don’t have a name tag.