I suppose you could say I was bitter, angry…pissed at the world. Every day was a communication issue with someone. Every day I had someone complain to my manager about my attitude and lack of caring emotion. In fact, that’s why I’m currently being reprimanded.
I had to look to his eyes first, the way they ignited with fire were beautiful, not because of the intense gaze or the murderous look that pulsed through the popping vein in his forehead – no, it’s because I knew what he was going to say even before he said them. It was no secret that Kalen Harrison hated my guts. It was also no secret that he would fire my ass if he had the authority. Thankfully he was just my manager and not the main owner. I’d be screwed…though it would give me a life outside this pizza emporium of hell.
It wasn’t in my luck – equality rights for the disabled or something like that. I couldn’t be fired unless I proved to be a threat to others or myself. Otherwise I could call Kalen anything I wanted and get away with it.
“Kalen?” I stopped him in mid rant, having spaced out and forgot to look to his lip.
“What Ella?” He asked, the look in his eyes suggests he answered me back with thick sarcasm dripping from the ends of each word.
“I don’t know why you insist on yelling at me. I can’t hear you. Maybe try using your indoor voice and scream at me silently?” I suggested, letting a smile slip onto my face before seeing the frown that seemed permanently etched in his own – which meant he didn’t get the comeback.
“Would it help get the point across? Because at this point I’m ready to talk to Mr. Bars and see if he can’t fire you. I’m tired of your attitude.”
His muscles around his mouth flattened stonily, his lips straightening into a thin line, which meant he was about to throw a bitch. I decided to let off some steam.
“Alright, you do that. If you really want to get me fired, here’s a suggestion – tell the boss I hit you, hurt you, and mangled you. Hurt you so bad you have to pop twenty Xanax a day because of the stress I cause. Tell him that and he’ll fire me but that just makes you look like a fucking pussy. So either tell me I’m fired so I can go and do something meaningful with the rest of my night or shut the fuck up and let me get back to work!”
I didn’t even wait for him to reply, I took my leave out the door and back to the front of the restaurant, pissed beyond words. The feeling didn’t dissipate but I was in control. I had to be, that’s all Kalen wanted and if I gave him another reason for a lecture I may as well throw my smock at him and walk out, not that the thought hadn’t crossed my mind once or twice.
“Welcome to The Godfather’s Emporium. Please take a seat and I will be right with you.” I related monotonously as I grabbed the menus from the front of the counter and walked toward the four men who were walking toward the furthest corner.
I noticed the men kept to themselves, it was apparent with the way they mimicked each other’s steps so closely. Like it was a routine they frequently followed.
As I stepped up to the table I could instantly feel their eyes on me, it was unnerving. Nonetheless I continued with pleasantries.
“My name is Ella, I’ll be your server tonight. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask and I’ll be happy to assist.” I told them with fake cheer as my smile seemed to match the sarcasm that stretched over my face and up, reflecting in my Aqua eyes.
I passed each of them a menu, gazing longingly at each of them, taking in their presence. They weren’t bad on the eyes, especially the two that looked like twins.
I suppose I got a little too caught up because the next thing I knew, a hand was in front of my face. I snapped out of intense stare down and looked to the closest one.
He was cute. Tallish, with shoulder length brown mousey hair, and dark chocolate pools that were as beautiful as he was. A well build frame, muscular even and if I had to guess, I’d say 6’1. He looked about twenty-nine, if not thirty. The twin guys looked early thirties. One had sky blue eyes and the other had intense green. They were both built but not like the brown haired guy. The first twin guy had shaggy dirty blonde hair, stopping just short of his shoulders. He was beautiful. About the same height as the first guy, if not an inch shorter. The 2nd twin had short neat cut hair, his eyebrows were furrowing as he stared at me with guarded interest. It shone in his eyes. He was neatly dressed to. The last guy – god if there were ever any words to describe him it would have to be – dark. His skin was pale white, his hair was a shaggy brown, but cut neat. It reached to the nape of his neck and laid neat. His eyes, they were unnerving. Beautiful and dangerous, mysterious and…something else. Sadistic? It was conflicting. I know the one with the shaggy blonde hair had an aura of sadness about him, the rest looked guarded and unnerving.
The hand swooped in front of my face again, this time preening back the lose hair that covered the middle of my right eye. Instantly recoiling at the touch I gasped, looking to the long brown hair again.
“I’m sorry.” I quickly apologized, gathering myself with a clear of my throat – though I am pretty sure it came out in a whimper.
I wasn’t anything special. I had long deep red hair, burgundy even, with Aqua green eyes, not tall – about 5’8 and thin. No curves and no muscles. I was simply a stick figure. The only thing that stood out were the missing pieces of flesh from my ears and the scars underneath my clothing. Scars people rarely got to see, but if they did – they never looked at me the same way again. So I hide them and keep them my own secret…it’s just easier.
“Don’t be.” Long hair dismissed as I fought the urge to put my fingers to his throat to decipher his tone. Was it deep and sultry or light and flirtatious? Sometimes the worst part of being deaf is not knowing.
“I’m deaf. I-I was just making sure I didn’t miss anything.” I amended quickly as I searched their faces for any sort of emotion.
Long hair seemed taken aback for a moment before looking to the other side of the table – straight at shaggy blonde.
I followed his gaze as shaggy hair smiled, though it seemed somewhat sad before bringing his hands up and starting to sign.
Hi, how are you tonight?
He asked as I watched his lips move with his hands. I smiled, signing back to him my response.
I’m ok, alive – if that counts for anything.
He frowned slightly at my response before counteracting, my eyes following his hands as they kept in time to the words he spoke.
Life is what we make of it. Good or bad. My name is Jessie, this is my brother Skye.
He pointed to Sky who gave him a slightly panicked look before reaching over to stop him. By the time he did though, I knew all of their names. Jessie, Skye, Colton and Cillian. Long hair was Colton and Cillian was the short brown. It suited them well, especially Jessie. There was just something about him I couldn’t place…but one thing was for certain, they were all strangers and strangers should be dealt with caution.
“A pleasure to meet you all. Is there anything I can get for you?” I relented with another smile, this time a genuine one.
The air seemed to slowly grow tense, long hair was no longer smiling as he began to shake his head, looking to Jessie with a scornful look- like he had done something wrong.
I backed up a little, unable to tell exactly was going on but knew enough to keep my distance.
“I’ll be back in a few minutes, decide what you want and take your time.” I insisted as I went to grab them some water. A welcome distraction, even if I did have to face Kalen again.
So without hesitation I opened the kitchen door and stepped in, unaware of the danger that lay ahead.
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