Make It Through
Author's note: one shot on quizilla
Make It throughAs accustomed after my classes from Monday thru Thursday, I head over to the Motown Music Coffee Shop on the corner of Bleecker and Mercer St. in New York City, where I hold a part-time job. I just started my freshman year of college at NYU and thanks to my friend Alex, whose brother Matt got me this job to work alongside him---great idea while you’re trying to achieve good grades in college even though I was the valedictorian in high school. But I had to get this job to help pay for my education because my mother passed away when I was twelve and my father was recently laid off from work and my father and I currently live on unemployment. I’m originally from Pennsylvania, but I had my heart set on moving to the big city---I am sick of shoveling horse manure after living on a farm for fifteen years of my life. I don’t believe in love at first sight like most girls and I’m not the most optimistic person you’d meet.
“Parker, we have a new shipment in.” That was my cue from my manager to go get the CD’s from the truck in the back. I oblige and grab my working gloves to pick up the crates. I really think they should have a guy move these things; they weigh about forty-five pounds each.
After work I decided to make a suggestion to my manager Pete, he is middle age with a slight pigment of grey hair forming, and he is a complete jerk.
“Don’t you think I should make the coffee and have Matt or another one of the guys move the crates?” I suggest.
“There is no such thing as woman-work or man-work, in this business the sexes are treated equal and paid equal.” I really wanted to go off on him, but that would make me fired, and no matter how much I despise this job, I need it.
Towards the tail-end of my shift, I carried a semi-larger crate than usual and unfortunately my arms gave out from transporting so many crates. I sighed when I bended down to pick up the mess. I prayed to God that I didn’t scratch any of the merchandise because it would come out of my paycheck and I need money to pay for my credits. Unexpectedly, my manager (Pete) trudges over, “I hope you didn’t damage anything…”
“No, I’m fine.” I dusted myself off.
“I was talking about the merchandise,” He corrected, “which appears broken. Parker, every item that is the slightest bit altered is coming from your paycheck this week.”
“But I need the money for college and…” I was cut off by a young man no older than twenty-five who was looking thru the Elvis Costello records next to me comes to my rescue, “Excuse me sir, it was my fault. I tried to reach in and grab a CD from the crate she was carrying and I must have pushed it out of her hands in the process.” He smiles at me, “Anything that is unsellable put it on my card.”
Pete takes the card from the man and mumbles to himself as he walks away.
I manage to say “thank you” and continue to pick up the things I dropped.
“Here, let me help you…” He reads my nametag, “Parker.”
“It’s fine; I can manage this on my own.” I continue to clean up the mess.
“Here is your card sir.” Pete hands the gentleman his card back and glares at me as he walks away.
“I’m Nick, by the way.” He introduces himself.
“Well then, thank you Nick.” Honestly I’m grateful he helped me out, but I don’t want to get in trouble for talking to him while I’m supposed to be working.
He still wasn’t leaving, even if I didn’t acknowledge him there. I admit he is a very attracted person, but one date leads to dating which ends in heartbreak. I’ve trusted someone once before and he cheated on me with my best girl friend. That was a night (or week) that I gained like five pounds sitting on the couch eating cookie dough ice cream watching crappy movies and crying. This one looks like a heartbreaker. I know I just can’t assume, but this is how it starts; good looking male comes to your rescue and you fall in love and then out of love.
He still is standing there, I finished cleaning up, and “I have to go unload some more trucks in the back, have a nice day sir.” Okay I lied, but it was a white lie and it won’t hurt anyone.
“Wait!” Nick shouted after me and I turned around abruptly.
”What are you doing this Friday night?” Oh no, is he trying to ask me out? “Do you want to hang out and maybe go see a movie or something?”
“I have to study for my finals.” Again another white lie, but it won’t help or hurt anyone.
He nodded his head and walked out the door.
The next day I was rearranging the records in alphabetical order.
“Do you carry any Prince albums here?” The voice sounded familiar.
My dark brown hair swooshed as I turned around and saw it was the same young man who saved my butt from Pete yesterday.
I smiled, “Yes I’ll show you if you’d like?” He nodded and followed me to the next section.
“Not many people ask to see the records anymore…” I mentioned while Nick was fingering through the albums.
“I’m not like most people.” He smiled, in success of finding the record he was searching for.
“Most people wouldn’t stick up for me either…” I don’t understand why anyone I have never met before come to my defense---it just doesn’t make any sense. And how would he know that the damage for the items wasn’t like a few hundred or a thousand dollars? Money mustn’t be an object in his world.
“If this world still had the slightest bit of chivalry left you wouldn’t be carrying heavy crates…I figured someone had to help you”
“I talked to my boss yesterday about switching me to coffee, but he thinks that I should be able to handle this.” I explained. Nick shook his head in disappointment.
“I’ll buy the album for you, it’s the least I could do.”
“No, it’s only fifteen dollars and I wouldn’t expect you to. Besides, when I helped you yesterday I wasn’t looking for any favors in return.” He explained.
“I have an employee discount card that will save you twenty percent on your order, at least let me do that.”
“Okay, as long as you don’t get in to trouble for using it on me.” I shook my head in reply----as long as I don’t get caught I can.
I rung his album up and scanned my discount card, quickly putting it away.
“I lied.” He added while taking his purchase from me.
I raised an eyebrow, “About what?”
Nick looked dazed out for a few seconds, “Huh? Oh, you have beautiful eyes, they are blue now, weren’t they grey before?”
“Um, thanks….They aren’t really that special…and they change colors depending on my mood…” I explained, “Stop trying to change the subject, what do you want?”
Nick blushes a little and continued, “You know how I said I helped you because of chivalry? I helped you because I needed a reason to talk to you.”
“Why would you want to talk to me? I’m nothing special.”
He completely ignores what I said, “Go on a date with me, we can go bowling or something.”
I was caught off guard, “Oh…um, I really need to focus on college and stuff. I don’t really have time for dating or relationships, sorry.” Why did I just say that? Ugh…trust me if I don’t have to go to school and pay my own way to be successful, I would consider it. I mean, he is really attractive and any girl would be lucky to date him…just not me.
He looked at the ground shyly, “Okay but I’m not going to give up just yet…”
I hear a voice behind me clear their throat, I turned around and it was Pete, “I everything alright here? Sir, do you need help finding something?”
Nick shook his head and mumbled as he walked away, “I’ve found what I was searching for.” He smiled at me and left.
Pete interjects, “What the hell was that all about?”
“Nothing sir, nothing at all” I responded.
“Get back to work, Parker.” He huffed and walked to his “office”. It really isn’t even a real office. It is a storage closet with a table and two chairs, but he calls it an office to sound more assertive.
I rolled my eyes and went over to Matt to see what he was up to. It was near closing so there wasn’t much we could do. So I helped Matt by restocking the coffee cups and lids.
Finally I was able to clock out, Matt and I went over to his house and hung out with his twin brother Alex until I had to leave. I have class early tomorrow morning, so I couldn’t stay late.
~~~~Nick’s POV ~~~~
The next day, I decided that I would go to Motown Music Shop earlier than usual. I went a little before noon to see if I can convince Parker to go for lunch with me and hangout. Much to my surprise, she wasn’t anywhere in sight. I decided to ask a cashier if she was working today. He informed me that she will be here in a few hours. “Do you want me to tell her you stopped by?”
“No thank you, I’ll just come back later to see her. Thank you very much…Matt.” I added his name at the end while I read his nametag.
When I was on my way out, an idea hit me. I immediately turned around to look for her manager Pete (I only know his name because of his nametag…so I’m not creepy or anything.)
“Excuse me?” I hesitated a bit.
“Back again, I don’t suppose you happen to be looking for something? Or someone?” He asked mildly sarcastic.
“Why do you give Parker all the crap work? She is a lady, your treating her like a man. Why don’t you let the guys working in the café switch with her?” I suggested.
“What business do you have in this? This is my shop and I run things the way I want to run them.” He spat. It took a few more remarks back and forth until I realized he would take a bribe. Let’s just say I flashed a few hundred dollars in his direction and he shut up quickly. We made a deal that neither of us speaks about this to anyone and in return she will be treated fairly.
I left before Parker came in for her shift; the last thing I wanted was her to see me bribing her boss, hopefully no one saw.
~~~~Normal POV ~~~~
After my three hour Math class, I have about two hours to myself before I have to leave for woke, so I decide to get some of homework done, therefore I won’t have much later to complete. My shift today was much earlier than usual, so I would be out of work by six o’clock.
After studying and doing some homework, I was on my way to work.
As soon as I walked in for my shift I was greeted by…Pete?
“There is a staff meeting in the back, come joins us please.” He told me. By “staff” he means Matt, Georgia and I. Georgia usually rotates days with Matt on occasion, so I rarely see her.
“What’s going on?” I whispered to Matt. He shrugged his shoulders in response.
“Matt, you are going to switch stations with Parker. Georgia, you will train Parker in the café making coffee and such. Understood?” Pete ordered. We all nodded and assumed our new positions.
“What was that all about?” I asked Georgia and we made our way to the café.
“I have no idea; suddenly Pete is acting so…friendly.” Georgia pointed out.
“He probably got laid last night or something…” I said bluntly.
“Ew, I don’t even want to imagine that…” I laughed at her disgusted face.
There was barely anyone in the store so Georgia decided to show me how to make a mocha frappuccino. It honestly wasn’t even that difficult, so I don’t understand why Pete never gave me a chance before to do this, instead he had me around lugging heavy crates.
Matt walked by with two of the crates in his arms, “I don’t know why you complained about this, it’s so easy.” I rolled my eyes and Georgia noticed and laughed.
“Just wait until you have to carry the full crates.” I joked.
“Haha very funny, for your information these weigh about fifty pounds.” I’ll let him win this one.
After Matt unloaded the crates he came over to us, “Guess who showed up today looking for you?” Matt turned towards me. I gave him a questionable look. “That guy that saved your butt from Pete.”
“Why was he looking for me?” I asked.
“I don’t know, all I saw was him talking to Pete…It looked like he was paying him.”
“What’s so weird about that? He made a purchase and he paid him for the item.” Georgia rationalized.
“But the thing that was weird was that he didn’t buy anything…maybe it was a bribe or something?” Matt added.
“That would explain the sudden nature change of Pete…But what would he be bribing him for?” I asked.
Matt zoned out in deep thought, “He must have bribed him for you, remember you told me the other night when we hung out that he was really against you carrying those heavy crates? And then you suggested you should ask Pete to switch you to coffee?” This actually made sense, he really does care about me and I didn’t give him any time or day in the world. I hope he comes back, but why would he? I flat out told him I wouldn’t date him. I messed this up, wow I’m a terrible person.
I was about to leave for the day, the chimes on the entry door clang and Nick walks in scanning the store, clearly searching for me. When his eyes met mine, I gave him a pleasant smile and we walked towards each other.
“I was wondering if that offer was still available?” I asked shyly afraid of the possible rejection.
You know in movies when the guy stares at the girl’s eyes and then mouth hesitantly? Yeah, his lips found mine and he kissed me, leaving me completely unaware of what was going on.
“So, I was thinking bowling and then dinner, if you’d like?” He smiled awaiting my response.
How could I say no?