sample chapter

sample chapter

A Chapter by Attentive_Ambience
"

Welcome to the cafe.

"

               The alarms went off: sanitizer, coffee, oven. Each beep filling the off-beat of the other, matching the urgency of the scuttling footsteps behind the counter. Coffee and chocolate combine as I inhale, creating the perfect blend of bitter and sweet " the sinful aromas of Café au Lait.

               The distinct trill of Alice’s, “How may I help you?” in conjunction with Aris’s, “Here’s your drink-up-delight!” let me know that the café was in tip-top shape.

               “Drink-up-delight? Is that a new drink?” I directed towards Aris as I printed out the interview questions for Cybele - an appointment due at any minute.

               “Well, isn’t every drink we serve-up a delight?” She gave me a look that said I should know what that meant and that this conversation was over. Aris was cute and bubbly on the outside, and a ball of tangled angst on the inside. I always had to guess if I was going to interact with a sweet or salty Aris.

               “Are those for the new employee?” Alice nodded her head towards the papers in my hand as she brought over my regular drink, a London Fog: five pumps of vanilla syrup, steamed milk, and Earl Grey tea. It was my divinity. Alice was my dependable right hand lady, an extension of my values and ideals concerning the business side of the café.

               “It’s for the perspective employee. We haven’t met yet, and what if she doesn’t fit in?” I took a seat in the corner cub of the café, away from any prying eyes or ears " any nebby noses. 

                I shuffled the papers, taking a second look at Cybele’s skill set. She was perfect in all regards with an array of retail positions illustrating her customer service abilities. Of course, this interview was all a front to offer her the job.

               “Ver-sach-i! What’re you lookin’ at?”

               Startled, I whipped my head up to see Bourbon twirling a strand of her blonde hair around her finger, staring down at me. “So, whatcha got there?”

               “Cybele’s resume and interview questions. She’ll be here any moment.”

               “Is she gonna be night-side or bright-side? I vote for some new flesh at night-side. Or,” she wriggled her eyebrows at me, “Is she going to be a mixed?”

               I was saved from answering Bourbon when a petite black-haired raven appeared. Her beady eyes locked one me, her smile meek " almost forced. As she took a seat across from me, Bourbon slipped behind the counter.

               “Anything to drink?” My polite business persona was in full force.  

               “No, thanks.” Her voice was like smooth velvet being torn apart.

               I shuffled the papers and took a drink to collect myself. Cybele had not sounded so intimidating over the phone.       

               “Are you ready? Let’s get started.” Bourbon burst through the side doors with a tray of steaming cups on top.

               “B, I haven’t even offered her the job.” I pinched the bridge of my nose.

               “Yeah, but you were going to anyways. Good job, boss. Let’s get to it. I refuse to work night-side tonight. Full moon and all that jazz. Plus, we like her.”

               “Agreed,” Alice shouted.

               “I second,” Aris called from the register.

               “Am I even the boss around here?” I mumbled to myself.

               Cybele let out a tinkering of a laugh, a cute little snicker, “Do I get a say in this?”

               I set down the contract in front of her.

               “If you could just sign on the two X’s. That’s all there is to it. You can begin next week if you want to, but I’m not opposed to you helping out today.”

               “What’s night-side?”

               “You’ll never have to worry about that. We need someone to cover bright-side, so that I don’t have to work the whole day, every day, without a break.”

               “What if I want to work this, ‘night-side’?”

               I tugged on the ends of my hair, not quite sure how to explain to a new employee that we cater to supernatural beings without scaring her off.

               “Let’s start with bright-side, and we’ll go from there. How does that sound?”

               She nodded in agreement as she picked up the pen and scribbled down her name.

               I looked out the picture windows lining the front of the store and beyond to the sunset. It was nearing seven and the streaks of purple, pinks, oranges, and reds all blended into a beautiful hue that was made for a restful summer evening. It would be night-side soon.

               “Hey, Sachi,” the distant sound of fingers snap-snapping. “Sachi helllooo. Is anybody home?” Alice snapped her fingers repeatedly, snapping my attention away from the view.

               “What happened to Cybele?” The seat now occupied by Alice.

               “Bourbon and Aris hustled her off to the back and has her all decked out in an apron and having her make drinks. You know, the fun parts.” 

               I gathered up the papers and went out the back, around the corner and took the back stairs to my apartment. Two more hours until closing, and then it would be my shift. 




© 2018 Attentive_Ambience



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Added on February 8, 2018
Last Updated on February 8, 2018