Nobody's Fault but Mine.
Tristan Russo: He doesn't like rules, people who get in his way, and those that stomp out his cigarettes. Leah Hansen: She doesn't like her job, her parents and especially not Tristan Russo. Shame that they're forced to work together.
As small children, we all imagine that in our futures we will be that one rare exception to the millions of people that have to work every single day with a job that they possess unfathomable hatred for.
When I was a small child, I imagined my first part time job to be along the lines of working at a zoo, being an assistant to a veterinarian, or helping kids as a space camp instructor. Those jobs were my dreams, and those jobs, at the time, didn't even seem too far out of reach.
Then again, I've been known to be wrong before.
"That'll be thirty-seven dollars and sixty-two cents, ma'am." I droned unhappily, handing the middle-aged woman her bags. She handed me forty dollars, and I opened the cash and gave her the two dollars and thirty-eight cents I owed her.
She sneered in my direction when I handed her the change rather unceremoniously, and, with her nose high in the air, she stomped away.
"Thanks for shopping at Lucky Mart," I added grumpily as an after thought, as the woman marched away.
She was the typical Lucky Mart customer. Snooty. Arrogant. Condescending. There was nobody obliging me to smile when I was getting a salary barely over minimum wage – and yet, here was this woman acting like she was the queen of France and I was a homeless crack head.
I hate my job.
Think about it. Have you ever walked into a store where a cashier is young and happy and smiles when she bags your items?
Yeah, that's not me.
I mean, how these people manage to keep a legit smile plastered to their face while they're working in my own personal hell is completely beyond me. Why should I be friendly and act happy, when this job is the bane of my existence? Seriously, I want to throw a cash register at the founder of Lucky Mart. Who in their right mind names a drug store Lucky Mart? I mean, seriously, Lucky Mart?
It seems all the creativity in this world has vanished forever.
As I continued to slack behind the counter, I thought back to my high school graduation day. The one thing that seemed to stick out more than anything else was my parents telling me that day that since I had such great marks they were going to pay for me throughout my college experience – because I had deserved it.
"Leah, part of growing up is learning to be responsible and accepting independence." My mother had told me, a few weeks before my first semester.
"…Which is why we think it would be best if you got a job." My father had added, beaming.
Yeah, he beamed. He beamed after basically telling his spoiled rotten daughter she would have to forget all dreams of a fun, party-filled year at college.
A bitter smile stretched across my lips. I should have just failed high school and lived off of welfare for the rest of my life.
"Leah," Dave addressed me, snapping me back into reality, "Do you mind taking a minute to train the new employee?"
See, I should have said, "Sure thing Dave, I'll be right on it!" and plastered a fake, but convincing smile on my face, but instead I blurted "New employee?" and let my jaw hang open in a not-so-attractive manner.
"Yes Leah," Dave muttered, rolling his eyes, "Make him feel at home here, make sure he knows the place well enough, and show him the basics."
Begrudgingly, I followed Dave to his tiny office behind the medicine counter, and peered at the guy who was sitting down beside the desk.
After giving me a once over, a smug grin settled onto his features. "Leah dear, I didn't know you worked here." He drawled, winking.
"Hello to you too, Tristan." I muttered in acknowledgement, nodding curtly in his direction.
"Well this is fantastic." Tristan announced to Dave, smiling a little too brightly, "Leah and I are already acquainted, which means – we can go straight to training." He stood up; dyed hair hanging in front of blue eyes, and strode towards me.
I resisted the temptation to scowl and smiled back with much false enthusiasm, "Yeah Dave," I echoed, "Straight to training!"
"Excellent," Dave replied contentedly, "Now what are you waiting for – get to work!"
As Dave's office door closed, I turned to scowl at the excuse for a human being in front of me. "That was all an act," I hissed, "You know very well that I can't stand you."
Tristan laughed, running a hand through his hair, which had messy blue streaks running through black locks. "Why do you despise me so, Leah darling?" He drawled, batting his eyelashes.
"Well, Tristan, do you recall that evening at Jason's party, what, a couple months ago?" I growled.
"No," He replied, grinning broadly.
"Why not?" I bit out.
"Because I was roaring drunk!" He sang merrily, grinning like a little child on Christmas.
"Do you remember talking to me that night?" I urged, frowning.
"Vaguely," He offered, a smirk growing on his features.
I let out a long, exaggerated sigh.
"You said: 'Hey, nice outfit babe, although it would look better in a crumpled heap beside my bed.'" I snarled, disgust dripping from my every word.
And Tristan, Tristan burst into laughter.
"Aw, Leah," He taunted, "Were you hurt I didn't keep up on the offer?"
"Oh yes Tristan," I confirmed sarcastically, "I was crying for weeks, I mean you never called!"
Tristan ignored my sarcasm. "Leah, you really are a terrible employee." He returned instead, "Shouldn't you be showing me around?"
"You know what they say about making faces too much, don't you?" Tristan jeered, "One day – your face will be stuck like that! And I hate to be rude, but darling, that scowl is not the most attractive thing I've ever seen."
"Shut up and follow me." I growled, walking towards the first aisle.
"Ooh would you look at this!" Tristan said, side stepping to the hair dye section, "Leah, do you think I would look good with purple hair?"
"You have got to be kidding me." I blustered, "Purple?"
"Well," He stated, "Blue streaks on black looks dashing in my opinion, so I'm guessing that purple will look even more fantastic."
"Get off your high horse," I glowered, "You already look like enough of an idiot with blue hair – don't push it, Tristan."
"Darling, you wound me so!" Tristan cried, holding a hand to his heart, "What does a poor soul such as myself have to do to get you to adore me?"
"Hm, good question." I responded, "Maybe, if you stopped talking and dropped dead I would adore you… Yeah, that sounds about right."
"If I died," Tristan commented, "You would cry oh so hard because I know for a fact that this is the most entertaining day at work that you have ever had. Once I'm out of the picture this job will just be devastatingly boring once again."
"Don't flatter yourself." I fumed, "This job got a thousand times worse the moment you were hired."
"I'll wait for the day you admit that you're wrong." He teased, smirk as wide as ever, "But until then – will you train me already? As much as I love doing nothing, this is a job and I must take it seriously! Unlike yourself, I am a rather devoted employee-"
"Shut up." I snapped, "You're going to be the worst employee ever. Hell, they'll fire you within a week."
"In your dreams, Princess." Tristan countered, "The fact that you still have a job here means they are incredibly slack and don't care even in the slightest whether or not their employees are anything special."
"Ouch, that one really hurt." I muttered sarcastically, "Now stop distracting me and pay attention to the products in each aisle!"
"I'm a distraction?" Tristan interrupted, with mock surprise, "Well damn Leah, I knew you thought I was hot – but I'm a distraction? Really, stop flattering me Princess!"
"Aisle four," I bellowed, drowning out his incessant chatter, "Is where we keep all house hold cleaning products such as dish washer detergent, bleach and-"
I stopped talking when I realized Tristan had disappeared altogether.
Like I needed another reason to hate my job.
Note: You haven't met these characters yet, but I will address the issue now before you even meet them. People have pointed out that character names are very similar to Twilight characters. It is a complete coincidence that there are characters with the names Jake and Bella in this story.. It isn't some kind of subconscious twilight mind game, I assure you. If anything, I picture Jake as the collegehumor actor Jake and Bella as the main character that Lindsay Lohan plays in Freaky Friday. Don't ask how I make these connections. But no, they are not twilight characters. I am actually not even much of a twilight fan. I digress. Enjoy your reading (: