I jerked up waking myself from the nightmare that plagued my every thought for the past few weeks. It’s always the same nightmare the death of my parents, and I have to watch each time as they die in front of me and there is nothing I can do but just watch. I run my hands down my face than back up and through my hair, huffing I glanced over at my clock cursing at the time. I’m going to be late if I don’t get my ass up and to work. Throwing off my ratty bed covers I rush to dress in my work shirt and pants I’m sure I haven’t washed in a couple days, not having time to shower I sigh throwing my blonde hair into a messy ponytail. I stare at my reflection in the mirror that hangs on my bedroom wall to anyone else I look presentable, but to me I look like a complete mess like I always have since my parents death. The girl staring back at me isn’t the same girl before my parents died no this girl had a darker look to her blue eyes that use to be so alive, and a scar that runs from her upper left eyebrow to the corner of her right lip. I use to think I was pretty, but the scar makes it hard to see past that and to see the same girl I once was. Now I’m a 24 year old college drop-out who works at a pet store and hasn’t been in a relationship since I was 16. Taking one last glance with only having a few minutes to spare I grab a pop tart and a water bottle along with my car keys and headed to work.
I slammed the door to my yellow bug that’s a few nuts and bolts from falling into complete pieces. I huff feeling the chill of the late November air as I quickly moved to enter in the sketchy place I work at. Zeke’s pet shop and grooming would be the last place I took my animal, the shop has had more drug deals and murders take place around it than Game of Thrones has character deaths.
“Well if it isn’t Max Hilton my number one late employee,” Zeke the store owner remarked tapping his wrist watch. This man acts like his pet shop is on the same level as pet smart, but I assure you it’s far below the dumpster out back.
“I like to think the world’s clock is late and I’m ten minutes early,” hanging my coat on the pegs near the front door I grabbed my name tag, carefully pinning it to my shirt missing my finger by a hair.
“Well while your lazy ass was running late some guy came in asking for you,” Zeke looked bored as he handed me the handwritten note the guy left. I looked down at the note it was written on a piece of paper torn from one of our many flyers.
Meet me at Stacy’s diner after work
Who in god’s green earth is M. Knight, and why would he want me to meet him. Last I checked I haven’t told any or even remotely any cute guy where I work. If I wanted the next guy I date to get an unknown disease I’d take him here. For all I know he could be hella ugly, and have a hunchback. But I’m not going to take my chances with this ‘M’ guy.
“And she finally shows her pretty little ass,” came the sweet yet harsh voice of my one and only best friend Rae. She had her hands on her hips giving me her best scowl she could must for her doll face. I roll my eyes knowing full well Rae can never be mad with me, even as kids she still couldn’t get mad at me.
“And a fine ass I sure do have,” smiling I headed to the back where she was standing to do our usual weekend afternoon work chores. I took one look at the back room and groaned at the mounds of boxes we had to unpack and put away. Zeke maybe a shit owner but when there is a deal he sure does take grabs for it.
“You should have seen it when I got here,” Rae motioned to the several empty boxes lying in a pile next to the trash can. She was always the hard worker out of both of us; she actually comes in on the time we should be here and not the Max time as they now like to call it.
“I don’t even want to know,” huffing I grab the rusty box knife and begin the long journey ahead of me.
“Speaking of things you don’t want to know- some hot guy came in looking for you,” so he isn’t hella ugly and has a hunchback.
“And what was he asking about me for,” cursing under my breath as the box knife slip from grip cutting the tip of my finger just a bit.
“All I know is he came in all knight in shining amour asking for you saying its important and something about your parents,” she shrug like it was no fucking big deal that some random hot guy if I might add comes in looking for me. Yeah because that happens all the god damn time, right? Maybe this is karma coming to bite me in the ass for some stupid shit I did.
“You gonna go?”
“What?” I was totally in my thoughts when she was still rambling on if I should meet this guy or not.
“Are you going to meet him or not?” saying it very slowly and putting emphasis on each word as she continued to work through the boxes.
“I don’t know he could be a serial killer or something,”
“Well I think you should go for two reasons- actually make that three: one he is really good looking and you know I bat for the other team, secondly he could be the key to what happen with your parents, and lastly you need to do something social for once and not sit in your house and play Until Dawn all day,” stopping what she was doing Rae looked at me with the same sad expression everyone gave me after my parents died. They all felt bad for me, the once oh so cheerful girl who turn cold and far away when the only people she truly loved left her. Can’t say I blame them I did some mess up things to help get over my anger, and did some regrettable things to help my sorrows if it wasn’t for Rae I’d be dead somewhere.
So after a not so long conversation and many tries to disagree and have her see it my way I now find myself sitting in the parking lot of Stacy’s diner after work. I drum my fingers nervously against my steering wheel looking out into the semi-empty parking lot. The street lamps flicker each with its own pattern making the night appear more terrifying than it should be, I count 5 cars but only one caught my eye. The black Shelby mustang parked next to me which seems to have a mind of its own in the parking lot, the mustang is way too nice to be a local and almost to pretty to be real. The car looks like something out of those magazines my dad use to read. The memory alone caused my heart to feel ten times smaller and it crushes at the painful memory that will only be just a memory a not a repeating occurrence. With one final sigh I step out of my car pulling my jacket on to cover my dirt infested work shirt slamming my car door.
“You know it isn’t kind to slam your car doors,” I froze not realizing there was someone standing anywhere close to me. I turned to see a man standing right behind me, who didn’t look much older than me but the slight bags under his eyes and the barely there frown lines make him look slightly older.
“Didn’t realize I had an audience,” huffing I peered up at the man through the strands of hair that have escaped my ponytail. He only smiled at my response the kind of smile I’ve sure got him away with a lot of things, but that shit doesn’t work with me.
“You don’t…just someone who is concerned for your car’s wellbeing,” again Mr. can’t mind his own business smiled at me.
“Well my car is doing just fine no need to worry for its safety, now run along I’m sure you have better things to do than to harass me,” turning my back on him as I walked the few feet it took for me to get across the parking lot the guy had some nerve to laugh.
“I wouldn’t call it harassing more like trying to make a conversation,” stopping in my tracks I let out an aggravated sigh. I was two seconds from showing this guy what harassment looked like if he didn’t leave me alone.
“Well why don’t you find some other girl to make a conversation with and leave me the hell alone I already need to meet one creepy guy I don’t need it to be two,” turning I gave him my best bitch face I could muster but he only looked even more amused with me.
“But you’re the only pretty girl here which means you’re the one I’m looking for,”
“I doubt I’m the girl you’re looking for,” he shoke his head as he gestured to the sadly empty parking lot we were currently standing in.
“You are the only girl I see which means you have to be Max,” my breath caught in my throat so this is M.Knight. This time I actually took a good look at him from his light brown hair to his whiskey brown eyes he wasn’t bad looking – hell the dude was hot, but he wasn’t going to hear me admit that. Knight noticed I was taking my time staring at him which caused his overly big ego to grow even more.
“So let me try again Max… I’m Michael Knight but you can call me Mike,” I was too stunned to say anything –well what the hell did Mike want from me.