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Satusfying Shift

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It was the first day that autumn decided to become cool in California. I was working as a host at a steakhouse at the time. It seemed like any other shift: helping middle class snobs find a table so they could mistreat our servers. At the time it didn't bother me overly much. I was getting paid. Besides, my little steakhouse, after seven months, had become a second home to me. The hostesses were all incredibly attractive but I had learned enough about them to decide that the baggage they came with wasn't worth the time or effort to try to sleep with them. I saw them as my sisters then. The servers were akin to older siblings and the managers were like the parents. Because of this dynamic, it seemed like we all had an unspoken understanding. We were there to protect each other from the outside world for the few hours we worked together. We were a family.

But that day, someone who I never thought would cross the threshold of my home shattered my illusory expectations. It had been only a week after the break-up, but Diana, my ex girlfriend, could be seen walking arm in arm with a new beau right up to the double doors of my restaurant. They opened the doors together. Fortunately, the restaurant had a vestibule, leaving another set of doors the happy couple had to make it through.
By the time I saw them cross through the first set of doors, "No f***ing way" somehow escaped my lips. The other two hostesses, Cassie and Sarah, stared at me wide-eyed when they heard my exclamation. I was still behind the podium, shaking with rage.

They knew about my turbulent three-week relationship with Diana. They could sense my shock.

“Jack, don't do anything stupid dude." I heard Sarah's plea. I didn't care. I waited for my ex and her lover to come through the second set of doors.

The two barely made it through the last barrier into the interior of my home before they went at each others' lips as if they would never kiss again. Right in front of me. Right in front of my family. I knew that if I didn't keep myself composed then I would've lost without having a chance to fight back. I wasn't about to let that happen. Once their attempt at making me jealous had ended, I gave the best sardonic smile I could muster as if to say, "Is that the best you could do, honestly?"

I could see Diana's confidence faltering when she realized that I wasn’t fazed. But I wanted to really drive it home.

"Cassie."

My coworker came right up to me knowing full well what I had in mind. I had no care for anyone else in the restaurant. I made sure to kiss her as passionately as I could. I made sure that Diana knew it.

When Cassie and I separated, I gave a satisfied smile as I turned to Diana.

"Now get out."





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