The Magic of Stars

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Chapter 16

Ace asks the driver to drop us off at a fast food restaurant, but to wait in the parking lot. The driver looked reluctant, but slowly shook his head and agreed. Ace asked him if he wanted to come inside and eat with is, but there was no hesitation there. He said no and that was obviously that.

Ace and I walked into McDonald’s with fifteen dollars in all and we were both hoping it would cover what we are going to get.

The place is extremely busy so people must have had the same idea. People are standing up to eat like it’s normal you can’t get a seat on a freaking chair. Babies are crying at the same time, piercing my ear and kids are shouting on the playground crawling around and making bigger holes in their knees. The adults on the other hand are simply chewing their food and acting like this is a regular fast food restaurant and I’m pretty sure that everyone is watching the kids. I try to walk forward to the food line, but Ace pulls me back just in time so that I don’t ram into a random kid sprinting past. A few people realize that we aren’t regulars because we are in a small town, so they stare at us and I see a man and his early aged teenager staring creepily while chewing slowly on fries.

“Um, Ace?” I say hesitantly.

“Um, yes Stella?” he says back with a joking tone. He turns his head to look at a couple our age making out in a booth by the window and when he looks back at me, he smiles like if he wants to do that too. I slowly shake my head though because I just wanna eat and besides, I want to have time with him making out in private.

I continue with my question. “Are we supposed to stare back?”

He laughs and says, “Have all the things we’ve said so far been questions?” I think back and try to remember what we’ve said so far and know that they all have been.

“Should we get into the line?” I ask, trying to keep our whole conversation in questions.

“Why didn’t you answer my question?” he says with mock seriousness.

“Why didn’t you answer mine?”

We moved into the line at the same time and then in unison, said, “How did we do that?”, which ended up in a fit of giggles. He ordered a big mac with extra large fries and I ordered the “number 2 cheeseburger meal” and watched the cooks behind the lady as she tapped her computer.

“That will be 12.34, please,” she said in a squeaky voice. I finally get a good look at her while I’m not staring at Ace. She has on layers of makeup and too much concealer. The highlights are not in the right places except for the tip of her nose, which has too much, making her nose stand out of her face. She looked like Felonious Gru from despicable me because her nose is really pointed. Her hair has too much hairspray and I started to choke on her overexaggerated perfume.

Ace hands her thirteen bucks from his wallet and she takes it from him like he has a disease that’s contagious and it could infect her from the money she got from him. I stifle a laugh and remember that we look rich because of the nice clothes we are in. I would have expected it if we were in our normal clothes with the holes and everything, but we look good. Kind of like a really rich couple deciding that we want to hang with the “peasants”. I take the large sized cup from her hand and walk over to the fountain to get some Dr. Pepper. Ace is by me with a receipt that has our order number on it. We lean against the wall and talk about puppies, having given up from the “questions” conversation and just wanting normal. Although talking about how puppies were trained to kill humans from a gangbanger so he could get revenge from the old judge who sentenced him to jail isn’t very normal.

“Number 345, please. Your food is ready.” The wanna-be barbie didn’t call us. Instead, it was the manager of the restaurant, keeping tabs on all the workers and making sure they’re doing what they’re supposed to. I knew this because first of all, he had a tag saying manager pinned on the front of his shirt and second of all, he was yelling at workers who did something wrong when we stepped up to grab our food.

By the time we had our food and was searching for a seat, the couple making out got up and left and because nobody eating while standing was paying attention, we slammed our butts down on the seat as fast as we could, claiming them before, (who knows), a kid jumps over our heads and gets it first. I wouldn’t be surprised. But nope, that fortunately didn’t happen because we were sitting and opening our wrappers to the smell of deliciousness. The first bite I took was the first bite I had of McDonald’s since I was nine. I moaned into it and rolled my eyes back, holding my stomach.

“That moan was sexy,” says Ace, smiling at me with bread stuck in his perfect teeth. I smiled back with the food in my mouth and he jokingly retched. “Maybe I should feed you McDonald’s more often.”

“Maybe? You definitely have too. This is the love of my life.”

“I’m hurt,” he says with a hand on his heart.

“Don’t be. You’ll be okay,” I say with another big mouth full blocking my speech patterns from coming out right. But Ace smilied, knowing exactly what I said. A couple in their nineties, it looked like, was staring at me, so I swallowed my food and fake spit in their direction waving a hand loosely then staring back until they “lose interest” and go back to chewing out their tongues.

“Hey! You didn’t deny it!” Ace says with hurt feigning his face. He grabs my hand and his eyes turn to slits, making him very sexy. Then he says very slowly, “I love . . . Chicken Mcnuggets.” I smacked him with my other hand which still had a half eaten cheeseburger in it and he screamed, not letting it touch him.

“Little baby!” I say. “It’s gonna get you,” I whisper creepy-like while poking holes in it for eyes with my straw and then pretend walking it towards him. Eventually, his scared face falls and he’s laughing so hard that he snorts something out of his nose and I ended up screaming.

We finish our food slowly, but then remembering that we’re taking forever and our driver is still waiting, we shove fries down our throats last minute and dump the trash off our tray. We got outside looking for him and sighed out of relief when we spotted him chewing on Panda Express, a happy smile on his face. I make a mental note that if I ever want to bribe him, I shall bring Panda Express. I’m sure he wouldn’t even hesitate by the way he’s looking at his food. It’s almost like the food is his god, but instead of him pleasing the food, the food is obviously pleasing him.

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