You're Drawing Pictures in Windex
I nodded to answer his question, hoping that he'd just order his food and stop talking to me.
I needed to focus on something other than Max and this man's sex appeal.
He was definitely right though. I was pissed at Max for being annoying and completely inconsiderate of other people's responsibilities. I was supposed to make sure that everything ran smoothly while Mario was away so what was he thinking when he hired Max?
I was also extremely angry at Mario for hiring somebody this incompetent but it's not like it's my diner so I guess I don't have the right to object.
This man was absolutely handsome. He wore dark blue glasses that matched the shade of his stormy blue eyes. His hair was a rich, chocolate brown and he had a sharp jawline. A five o'clock shadow marked his face and brought out the stubble on his face.
Great, another gorgeous guy. I can't imagine why he'd be interested in my wellbeing.
Why is he bothering to talk with me?
"You sure? Is that guy bothering you? I can tell him to leave you alone," the Stormy Eyes asked me as he pointed to Max attempting to sweep the floor.
"Nah, I'm good. He's just a new employee and currently a handful to deal with right now but he'll be fine and so will I," I said as I forced a laugh despite being irritated.
Business rule 101: Never treat a customer badly just because you're unhappy.
I'm pretty sure the guy knew that I was totally lying but he didn't say anything. He probably realized that I wouldn't budge. At least my stubbornness was apparent. That's a relief.
His facial features expressed his disbelief and a tinge of concern. I held still as he leaned towards me.
"Why are you laughing uncomfortably if he's not bothering you?" said Stormy Eyes as he looked dead straight into my eyes. It was as if he could see through all of me, right into my thoughts.
"You assumed I was uncomfortable. Maybe I was just frustrated," I countered as I wiped down the counter near the cash register.
I walked away to refill another customer's coffee since the man in front of me didn't order anything right away. I returned to see Stormy Eyes waiting for me.
Stormy eyes arched a brown eyebrow and smirked at me. "Okay, let's say that I believed that you're 'fine.' But at least try to explain why your new employee just spilled the whole Windex bottle on the floor instead of using a spray bottle for the tables," he said.
I sighed and hoped that the stranger was wrong. I looked over the display to see what Max was doing and once again, my blood pressure skyrocketed.
Max had finished sweeping and decided to teach himself how to use Windex apparently. By dumping it all over the floor near the empty tables. He doesn't know how to listen! I told him to sweep, nothing more, nothing less!!!!!!!!
"Would you like anything to eat or drink before I disappear for a few minutes?" I asked politely even though inside, I was fuming at Max. The bakery wasn't packed at the time so I figured I'd be able to slip away from the counter for a few minutes.
I'm pretty sure I've planned his murder in a million different ways.
"Sure, I'll take a decaf coffee and one of those cupcakes," said Stormy Eyes as he settled on a plush red stool near the counter. I swear this man wanted a tub of popcorn so that he could watch the show that he knew was about to go down. His eyes were shining with mirth at my growing irritation at him and Max.
"Coming right up," I responded with a small smile that was once again, forced.
Once I served Stormy Eyes with his order, I stomped away from the counter slowly towards Max who was currently sitting on the floor next to the puddles of Windex and using his hand to make smiley faces. Didn't he know how many chemicals were in Windex? I thought he'd have the common sense to at least use gloves.
I was on a mission to whisper yell at Max which was why I didn't notice the puddles of Windex on the ground where the counter ended. Nor did I see the open bag of all-purpose white flour that I'd left on a shelf.
It took a hot second for me to slip on the chemicals. I tried catching myself by grabbing onto the shelf above my torso but failed so the whole bag of flour was dumped onto my head and the shelf slipped off of the hooks it was placed upon. The crunch of the wood on the tile made heads turn towards me but no one broke my fall.
"FUCKING HELL," I grunted as I landed straight on my ass on the cold tiled floor.
Once I get my hands on that asshat, I'm going to kill him.
If I wasn't angry before, I was certainly seething like a volcano about to erupt.
My whole head was covered in white flour and my face was caked in it too. I'd have to change my clothes and somehow wash my hair. My shift didn't end until 7 tonight.
I was fucked. But if I was ruined, then so was Max. This is the end for him. Vengeance will be mine as Mushu from Mulan said.
"Max!" I shouted as I struggled to get up. There was so much flour on the ground and mixed with Windex, it was a gooey paste.
"Oh shit!" I heard a familiar voice exclaim as their footsteps got closer to me.
It was Stormy Eyes who started cackling in laughter when he took in my appearance. His left hand had the camera he'd walked in with and his right hand had his I-Phone. He even snapped a selfie with me before asking me if I was okay which made me even angrier.
I felt like a gorilla that had been locked in a cage for years. But today, I was free to go off.
Max was oblivious to all of the commotion as he acted like a five-year-old and played with the Windex on the bloody floor.
"Gee thanks for helping me. I'm totally fine," I spoke peacefully even though Stormy Eyes and Max had managed to get onto my shit-list in the span of less than a few minutes.
I dusted my pants off and resumed skirting around Windex puddles to make my way towards Max.
"Are you fucking kidding me Max?" I whisper hollered at him. He didn't even look up at me as he swirled another smiley face in the Windex which further aggravated me.
The goal was to avoid causing a scene but I guess Stormy Eyes had different ideas because he continued filming me and other customers stared at me.
But I was on a roll and nobody could stop me. Not even the fact that I was in the middle of a well esteemed bakery.
"First you come to work late. Next, you're not even dressed in casual work attire. Then, you fool around with the Windex, pretending that you drank it to prank me. And finally, YOU SIT ON THE GROUND LIKE A FIVE-YEAR-OLD TO DRAW PICTURES IN A CLEANING AGENT?! What do you have to say for yourself?" I shouted at Max after screaming the longest rant I've had in years.
Yes I have a habit of compartmentalizing my feelings and bottling up my issues but today, I released my anger on Max.
Max tries to pout and make puppy eyes to gain my sympathy but I'm way past being a kind and considerate human being.
"Don't you want to draw in the Windex with me, sister? We could have so much fun," Max retorts back with a goofy smile.
I swear I could hear customers laughing quietly in the background over the jazz music playing and I saw Stormy Eyes filming me still.
I wanted to scream at Stormy Eyes to stop filming me but I stopped myself. He's a customer so just deal with him privately after.
"Max, just go home, please. And don't come back tomorrow unless you're willing to work or learn the ropes. I'm not your babysitter. I expected better from you," I snapped, bristling with anger as I snatched the remaining cleaning supplies from him.
"But the Windex is still on the floor Kari. Do you want me to---?" Max asked with tears filling his eyes.
Bullshit, this guy was an actor and used to being babied by everyone. I don't sugarcoat anything so he's in for a new surprise.
"NO. Please leave or I'll talk to your boss. You don't want that," I growled at Max who cowered in fear. I took a step back because I felt bad about making him feel afraid.
What I didn't mention was that I didn't even know who owned the diner. So oops, I lied.
Sorry, not sorry.
"Sorry Kari," said Max and I huffed in annoyance as I walked away from him.
"I'm sorry about that everybody. Coffee's on the house today guys!" I said to everyone watching the spectacle. I felt humiliated because I probably looked disgusting but I needed to do my job, unlike Max who had no idea of the meaning of responsibility.
I grabbed Stormy Eyes' arm tightly and dragged him towards the storage closet with me. He kept filming me which made me blush because I looked atrocious.
"You! Stop filming me, I'm not Charlie Chaplin," I demanded as I maneuvered his phone from his hand.
He gaped at me in total shock as I hit stop on the video. He looked heartbroken for a split moment.
Yeah, probably heartbroken at the prospect of losing such a comedic piece of footage.
"Stop staring at me and tell me what you want from me. Don't give me any bullshit answers either," I snapped at him.
"Errrr nothing? I just thought that filming that would be kind of funny for the fifth anniversary of the bakery's gala," said Stormy Eyes with a twinkle in my eyes.
I looked at him dubiously and said, "Yeah no Stormy Eyes. I don't give consent to being humiliated at a public event in front of people. Who even are you?"
I turned around to find the light in the storage closet. I don't how or why but somehow, I always end up in this fucking closet.
"Fine, fine I won't use the footage. But can I still keep it, please? It was pretty hilarious. I'm Tyler Lofton. And you are Kari?" he asked as he straightened his navy blue glasses and looked at my shitty appearance. His stormy blue eyes looked even darker as he saw my shirt plastered tightly to my body.
"Karina and sure, you can keep it as long as you don't post it. Don't make me regret my decision. Now, tell me who sent you here to get footage," I asked as I took a deep breath to calm down.
I glanced around and saw that everybody was doing okay at the moment. No one required my services yet.
"Quinton Thompson, the owner of Too Tasty," he responded, gently taking his camera from my hand. He took a step closer to me and I inhaled deeply from being in close proximity to him.