“Why are you still standing there?” I looked over my shoulder looking at Sammy.
“What do you mean?”
“You seem to be frozen where you stand, and we have people’s hands going up for coffee or tea or some kind of beverage.”
I just shook my head to clear it from my thoughts.
“You’re right, I’m sorry. I’m on it.” I went straight to getting their orders, serving them their coffee, and having little polite conversations. A lot of the nighters were smiling, big smiles and their eyes were glowing.
I know that was a sign that they were a little bit too interested in me, but I just took it casually knowing I was in a safe place. Noel will not let any of them attack me. I kept on going and I offered some of the lighters, some coffee or some tea, or any of the other items that were selling. It went perfectly well.
It was only one night, and I had the best time. When the last lightie left with a nighter. I just looked at Noel and whispered to him, “Is that okay?”
He looked at me and said,” As long as it’s consensual. We have nothing to do with that. They had a good time. They paid for their services, and it looked like you had a good time as well.”
I smiled and put down the cloth.
“I did have a good time.”
Noel gave me this look. ” Where have you waitressed before?”
” What gave it away?”
” The way you were interacting and serving everybody their coffee or their tea without making mistake. And without dropping anything gives me the idea that you used to be a waitress.”
“I was a server, not at a restaurant though. I served at home because I had a lot of siblings and I had to serve them. So yes, I was a waitress in in a sense.”
Sammy and Noel started laughing.
“Okay, so the experience you got was because you had to serve your siblings. ”
I looked at them both like ‘Don’t laugh’.
“It was a lot of us. My parents did not believe in reproduction control. So yes, there was quite a few of us.”
The laughter continued. I have never seen two people enjoy the fact that I came from a large family as much as they did.
“How many are we talking about?”
I looked at my feet hiding my cheeks when I said ten.
They both stopped laughing and just looked at me in amazement.
Sammy took off her apron and put it down. Snapping out of her trance.
“I will be here early in the morning, and I guess I’ll see you when the sun starts to go down.”
“Yes, you will Sammy. Have a good night.”
Sammy walked past Noel and whispered, “Do not with her, too Fertal.”
“Bye your darkness you did okay tonight.”
“Good night, Sammy.”
She waved and left. I went to the back of the counter to retrieve my bag and was about to say good night to Noel.
When I stood up Noel was right there. Right behind me.
” Is there something wrong? ”
“No. I just wanted to thank you for helping us out tonight. It would have been a bit much for me and Sammy to handle on our own. Normally when it’s that kind of a crowd, I would have to hire an extra hand. I just appreciate it. So here.” He handed me an envelope.
I opened it wondering what was inside and then when I saw the amount of money, I closed it quickly and handed it back.
“Noel, you did not have to pay me for this. I really enjoyed helping you guys out. Free of charge. It’s not a problem.” I told him.
Noel face hardened. ” I don’t run my business like that, and I don’t owe anybody. You did help us out and I do appreciate it. But I will pay for you working tonight. If it’s too much. Then take out of it what you think is appropriate that you earned and then just hand me the rest back. But I will pay you for working at the coffee shop tonight.” He was serious.
I sighed and looked in the envelope and I took out $100 Because honestly, I didn’t need the money. But I do understand that I was rubbing him the wrong way. It was way too much money he had in the envelope, and I was not raised to take advantage of people that way. I took out the $100 handed him the rest of the money in an envelope. And I said, ” Thank you so much for the money and now I’ll leave.”
As I tried to move, he stood in my way again. “Is there something else wrong?”
“No. Well, I wanted to do something.”
He stood there looked around and then looked back at me but this time it wasn’t his usual look. His eyes weren’t glowing either. I wasn’t really afraid that he was hungry. But the tension that was starting to pick up in the air was a bit uncomfortable.
“Noel. He leaned in and brushed a soft kiss across my cheek then another near my ear causes me to shiver. Then he backed away. “Thank you.”
I just touched my cheek and looked at him. “Was this what you give to other people that you hire?
” No, it’s not what I give other people that are hire but I wanted to thank you properly and I would be lying if I didn’t say I was a bit attracted to you. I will never go any further unless I’m invited. So, thank you for helping for tonight. And I hope to see you tomorrow.”
I walked past him and around the counter. I was about to leave when I turned around and thought why not.
Noel, do you ever go out other than the club from this place?”
“How do you know I go to the club?”
“I was assuming.”
He gave me this look that was unreadable.
” What do you have in mind? “He asked.
“Well, there is a new movie out and I don’t like going to the movies by myself. So, I was wondering if maybe tomorrow or the next night. If you’re available, we can go and just enjoy a movie and then you can come back and work at least. If that’s the only amount of time that you have to be away from your shop.
He looked at me and there was something that went across his eyes. And normally I’m a very good reader of people’s faces and what they do and what they mean. I just could not figure out what he was thinking.
“Darlene I would love to go out with you to the movies. Not tomorrow because it’s too short to pop up on Sammy. And it’s too short of notice for me to get her help. It will have to be the night after. ”
“Okay, great. So, we’ll go to the movies. And I’ll see you then.”
“Are you not coming in tomorrow for your coffee.?”
“Oh, I’ll definitely be in for my coffee. Tell Sammy that darkling is going to be here bright and early for her mix of elixir.”
He laughed so hard. I couldn’t help but smile.
“Have a good night, darling.”
I looked at him. I asked, “Darling?
He’s said, “Darlene.”
“Okay, you and Sammy love to play with my name. But I could have sworn you said darling. Have a good night. No.”
Then walked out.
I cannot believe how well she did tonight night. She served seven tables. Made no mistake, remembered everybody’s name and did not need to write anything down. She was like a superb waitress.
Sammy even gave me a nod to tell me that she approved of Darlene with the people. If she didn’t work somewhere. I would have hired her right away. But then again, if I would have hired her then I can’t date her.
It has to be one or the other. And right now, I’m not dating her and I’m not hiring her so I’m stuck. The night ended perfectly, and Sammy made her exit. I took my opportunity to thank Darlene the way I thought I wanted to thank her.
I wanted it to be innocent and chaste, that I even surprised myself by kissing her a second time near her ear where I felt her pulse beat on my lips.
We are adults. Grown men would kiss a grown woman on the mouth but I’m a nighter and she’s a lighties. And if I take these things too fast– I can definitely end up ashes, so to speak.
She asked me out on a date, huh? That surprised me. Movies.
They’re dark in the movies. And we’ll be walking back at night. Hmm. Things can happen during that night. But yet, I’m going to take it slower with her.
The night when she came in here, crying because her friends thought of her being a certain way is not something I want to repeat. I want her to be relaxed around me. I want her to trust me. And I do not ever want her to shed one tear because of me.
Slow and steady is the way we’re going to go.
Now, Eliza and Peter, what am I going to do about them? This community center is not a good idea. I’ve been doing some research. The way they want to build this community center is the center of the lighties’s territory.
If that center is built there will be a lot of deaths and they will have no protection because once a nighter crosses inside the lighties’s territory, you’re giving them the okay to do with ever they want with whomever they want. I refuse for them to use these people as feeding bags without consent. ‘Eliza, I remember when I used to follow you. I remember when I was ready to make you, my world. And I also remembered when you left me.’
That night when she left. She gave me this look as if I meant nothing. No, I refuse to go backwards. And I refuse for her to do what she’s planning to do. Now, I just have to find out who’s behind this construction and how I will have to stop it.
Why is it always good with bad? Why can’t the good just stay good? Whatever. One night at a time.
“Now I gave you two parts in one day. Let me hear your thoughts. All comments appreciated. Fia”