The 2nd Lesson You’ll Learn reading BEFORE AND EVER SINCE
First of all…Happy Halloween!! May all your spooks line up happy. 🙂
Okay, so what did you think of yesterday’s lesson? Ever had that happen to you? Lord knows I have. And what did you think of our first Hot Tool Guy? 🙂 Want him to come to your house?
Well, before we get to Lesson #2, I’ll point out where my virtual blog tour post stop is today. I’m at Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell today, talking about the books that have inspired me through the years.
Now to hear from Emily with the 2nd Lesson You’ll Learn reading BEFORE AND EVER SINCE…
Emily Life Lesson #2… The most likely time to be found is when you’re trying to hide.
“Where are you?” Cassidy asked.
“The grocery store.”
“Again? Didn’t you just go there?”
I cursed my bad lying. “Oh, I forgot a few things.” I pushed my cart faster, wanting to get done and get home. “So, anyway, that’s fine if you want to do th—” I choked back the last word as I rounded an aisle into the produce, and there stood Ben. Fondling peaches.
“What’s the matter?” Cassidy asked.
“Nothing,” I said under my breath into the phone, jumping backward and tugging my cart with me.
I dead-ended at the meat section, thinking I could stay there, then had a panicked thought that he was a man and would probably buy meat.
“Shit,” I said under my breath, forgetting Cassidy was still chattering.
She stopped. “What?”
“Oh nothing, baby, I just—can’t find the sea salt.”
I darted across the end caps till I found what was sure to be a safe aisle, and jumped in there with the tampons and sanitary pads. And then flattened myself as best I could to all the pink packaging, just in case he tended to look down each aisle. We said our goodbyes and I strongly considered stalking the registers from afar to make sure he left. Then again, if I’d just hurried up I would have been gone by then.
As if on cue, he passed my aisle, slowly pushing his cart as he studied a piece of paper in his hand. I stopped and froze in place, holding my breath, not blinking or breathing till he passed. Then I ran for the registers like the chicken shit I was, not caring that I’d only grabbed four of my thirty-something needed items. They’d be there tomorrow.
I quick-scanned the registers for the fastest choice, and picked one with an elderly man with only a pack of toilet paper and a box of candy under his arm. I’d be out of there in minutes, as compared to all the other lines sporting three and four people each, with mountains overflowing their carts.
I did a little shuffle move, waiting for my turn, looking behind me every five seconds. Why the hell was I so paranoid? Why was I hiding in my grocery store, in my town? He should be hiding from me. And no sooner had that thought crossed my brain, when he rounded the corner, and I ducked.
Pretending to closely inspect the latest celebrity gossip on the rack, I silently begged the checker to hurry the hell up.
“Price check on four!” she called into a microphone, holding up the box of candy.
“It’s five-ninety-nine,” the elderly man said.
“I have to check sir,” the pink-cheeked checker said, pulling out a reference card to prove it.
Great. I picked a newbie with anal retention.
“I actually saw it too, and it was five-ninety-five,” I said, nodding from my bent over stance.
The girl looked at me with giant eyes. “He said five-ninety-nine.”
I blinked. “That’s what I said.”
“No, you said five-ninety-five,” the man said.
“That’s why we check it,” the girl said, nodding.
“For four pennies? Seriously?” I said. I really actually kind of hissed it. “Don’t y’all scan everything now, anyway?”
The girl scowled at me. “The scanners are down,” she said.
The man just kind of shrugged, and I gave him a weary look. Of course the old man didn’t care. All he had planned for the day was to sit on the toilet and eat chocolate caramels.
Finally, a greasy-haired stock boy ambled up, holding a hand out for the box. The old man looked almost physically pained to watch it leave with the boy, as if he’d taken great measures to select that very box and didn’t trust the boy not to switch it.
I was still very much bent over, when legs stopped behind me. Somehow I knew who they belonged to before I ever looked up.
“You okay?” Ben asked, not sounding particularly sincere.
I slowly lowered my stoop to a crouch, pretending fascination with a tabloid.
“I’m fine, how are you?” I asked, hoping I sounded as uninterested as he did.
He reached over me and plucked the tabloid out of the rack, giving off an aroma of warm soap when he did so.
“The end of the world, huh?” he read off the headline. “Nostradamus’s prediction keep you up at night?”
I saw the humor in his eyes, but I refused to play. “Lots of things keep me up at night,”
Who’s been there? *raising my hand*
Stay tuned again today for the next Hot Tool Guy of the Day!
And remember to comment here for a chance to name a character in my next novella!