Mitchell's Mustard Blog

June 9, 2011

Jack and Lauren

Filed under: My Work — mitchellsmustard @ 6:27 pm

He will always remember the way she was taken from him.

Comfortably sitting in the coffee shop Jack was in his usual seat by the floor to ceiling window, he was a people watcher because it seemed to help him relax. Watching strangers go through their every day routine he found interesting but also he knew deep down he would see her on her way to where ever she goes at 9:15 every morning. The sun was shining down on the concrete jungle that Jack called home; he was never a fan of silence so living in a city he thought was the only option and after moving here a few years ago he’s never looked back to his country upbringing. Looking out onto the crossroads where the coffee shop was situated watching people milling around, some rushing whilst patting down their hair probably thinking of an excuse to tell the boss why they’re late and others strolling down the street window shopping and enjoying the morning. The reflection of the sun off the windows of passing cars was mesmerising and the noise from life inside the coffee shop blended into the background; this was Jack’s favourite place to spend time watching and thinking. It was 9:15 and there she was across the street, the dream girl. She must have been in her early 20’s with a slim figure that today as everyday her dress caressed every curve correctly. She had long brunette hair that just passed her shoulder blades and always looking in place whatever the weather; this glow of goddess just oozed from her every movement, she was beautiful. At this moment Jack always thought what it would be like to be walking next to her, holding her hand and being the person that makes her laugh. ‘what do you say to a women of that beauty and calibre to get her attention’ Jack thought to himself.
“She’s probably heard it all before” he muttered
“Sorry, are you talking to me?” said a voice next to him.
He suddenly turned and looked at Lauren the waitress who was standing next to his chair.
“Oh hey Lauren, sorry I’m just talking to myself. . . . Sign of age” Jack said laughing.
“That’s ok” Lauren replied with a blushing smile, she then turned on her heels and headed back to the counter. Jack had always liked Lauren; she he’d been working there for as long as he remembered and she was always smiling and polite which is a rare quality in people these days and she was always nice to see first thing in the morning. He wondered what she would be like to kiss, what her laughter sounded like or what she looked like when she had just woken up. She always seemed to be quite shy and bashful so Jack always just kept their conversations to the usual pleasantries just incase she became uncomfortable. ‘she’s a sweetheart and too good for me’ Jack thought to himself as he watched her walk away. This seat in this coffee shop had helped Jack through some hard and emotional times and he felt more at home in this cracked leather armchair than he did in his own living space, some people would think that was a little sad but Jack believed it to be a home from home. This leather chair was one of a pair surrounding a small round pine table which he always shared with whoever his partner was at the time, it had also been there at the break of his relationship with his ex girlfriends, the day he lost the job he used to love and then found the job he loves now and it was that chair he sat in when he first came to the city, the sights and sounds burning away at the back of his mind. The seat he found in this coffee shop was his savour from the worry; he sat there with a dozen papers, a marker pen and his mobile phone. It was only a few years ago but it felt like a life time, back then the chair was new and had that strong leather smell but it now looked lived in. It had cracks and marks but became more comfortable with time just like that of Jack. It’s funny how a big city brings your strength and courage out to the surface. Jack loved the city and deep down he was sure the city loved him equally, it was about time he shared it with someone.
Jack stood up and marched over to the counter where Lauren was standing, in one bold move he swept her hand up into his,
“I know it’s taken me two years to ask but . . . Meet me tonight for a drink?” he heard himself say as his heart felt like it was going to burst through his chest.
Lauren blushed like no other but the answer was clear from the smile on her face that stretched from ear to ear, this was a moment she had wished for but never believed it would happen.
“I’ll meet you over at your table at 8?” she said with a smile.
For the second time in one day he stood there and watched her turn on her heels and walk away but this time it felt different, better. Jack had often thought about asking Lauren out for a drink away from the coffee shop but always decided against it, he believed that if she wasn’t interested then it would become uncomfortable to drink there but deep down he was really just afraid of rejection but for that moment standing at the coffee shop counter he felt good. Jack noticed at the other end of the counter the middle aged women who also worked at the coffee shop smiling and looking at him like she was thinking about squeezing all the air out of his body so he took a look at his watch and to no one in particular he said
“Right, I’d better get to work.”

7:45 and Jack was strolling towards the coffee shop with a spring in his stride, he hadn’t done much at work as his mind was preoccupied with the thought of his date. He caught a glimpse of her through the window once he had reached the corner; she was sat in the chair opposite his and she looked breath taking, he made sure she knew that once he got inside and sat down.

Jack woke with a smile on his face, pleased on how well the date had gone and he was quite looking forward to his trip to the coffee shop this morning because they agreed to meet for breakfast on Lauren’s morning break. Standing on the corner looking through the window where he was the night before he noticed that the chair opposite his was broken and sitting wonky, walking into the coffee shop there was a sudden sad atmosphere inside. Looking around to try and catch a smile from Lauren but she was no where to be seen, the whole place felt sombre and the only person behind the counter was the middle aged women from yesterday.
“Morning, err . . . Is Lauren about.” he nervously mumbled,
“Ohhhh my darling . . . She was so pleased you had asked her out” she said sobbing,
“is everything ok? What’s happened? Where’s Lauren?” Jack felt his heart pick up pace.
“She was in an accident last night, a car accident.” more sobbing,
“What? Where is she? Is she ok?” Jack felt scared now.
“I’m sorry Jack but . . . She’s gone.”
Jack stumbled backwards and sat in his chair; with similar vision to a drunk he stared at the broken chair opposite and learnt the important lesson to never hold back and to seize the day.

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