CW: A blast from the past.

“You find a note tucked in your drive-through fast food bag”
– a prompt for this week’s CW piece.
[Source: @DailyPrompt on Twitter]

(If you speak German (?) and you can/ are willing to translate what that note in the picture says, I would be grateful. I hope it does not say anything bad.)

***

It was Thursday evening, and after a long day at work, I had no energy to cook dinner. As I drove from the office, I bounced different food ideas in my head. Chinese? Mexican? Thai? Sushi? One by one, I decided against them all. What I wanted was some meat, a lot of it, and I wanted it fast.

I swerved to the right at the last minute to pull into Burger King’s drive thru.
“Welcome to Burger King. May I take your order, Your Highness?”
It was Vanessa. I could recognize her voice anywhere, at any time. Her petite figure, long black hair and stunning blue eyes haunted my teenage dreams for years. She, herself, was always out of reach, though. Out of my league. Always dating the football or soccer jocks. Never giving nerds like me any time of day.
“Nessa? Hi! It’s me, Kirk” – I wanted to say, but didn’t.
She wouldn’t even know who I was anyway. There was no way she remembered me.
“Ummm.. yes… umm… hi!…”
“Hello, welcome to Burger King. May I take your order, Your Highness?” – she repeated, slightly annoyed.
“Oh, yes, um… of course… order… yes… Can I get the ‘Double Quarter Pound King’ with large fries and a large Coke, please” – I finally managed to compose myself.
She repeated the order to me, I confirmed, she told me to pull up to the window, wished me a good day, and that was that.

Every now and then, when I would get upset with my dating life, I imagined Ness and I would randomly run into one another, she would recognize me, but would have a hard time believing how handsome I have become. We would go out for coffee, catch up on the lost years and laugh until the sun went down and came back up again. It was going to be magical.

That image kept me going throughout some dark times. But now, the reality came crushing down. We did run into each other, but nothing magical happened. She did not even recognize me. Granted, I did ditch glasses for contact lenses, I was done with my braces, and my acne cleared up quite nicely.

I paid for my meal at the window, and then pulled up to the final station, awaiting my food.
“Double Quarter Pound King, large fries and a large Coke?” – a middle aged man asked before handing me my order.
I confirmed, grabbed it, wished him a good day and drove away.

“Stupid. Idiot!” – I yelled at myself.
She probably didn’t even see me. All she had to go on was my voice, and since we never spoke, she had no way of knowing how my voice sounds and that it was me. I decided to return in a couple of days and chat her up. Outside of my head.

When I got back, I placed my burger and fries on a plate and proceeded to gorge myself. As my ketchup ran out, I reached to the bottom of the bag for another packet. My fingers felt something else, aside from the ketchup. It felt like a piece of paper. Maybe a receipt? I pulled it out and saw that it was a handwritten note.

“Kirk, come back! – Nessa” 
I blinked twice. I wiped my eyes, to make sure it was not a mirage. The words were right there in front of me. It was from Vanessa. To me.
“Come back!” – I repeated the words out loud a couple of times, as if I was expecting for the note to disappear, or for me to wake up. But nothing of the sort happened.
“Come BACK?! Back where?”
“So she knew it was me?”

I had so many questions and none of the answers.

The note left me stunned and puzzled. I decided to go to BK in the next few days to see what she meant, but first, I wanted to enjoy the rest of my meal, and relax a bit.

During the next couple of days, I tried going back, but she was never there. After the third time, I decided to ask when was the next shift she was going to work, but no one knew. They had no idea who Vanessa even was. They said no one of that name, and/ or matching her description worked there at that time, or in the recent past.

Was I too late?
But too late for what?
Did she work at BK?
Or if not, then how did she slip the note into my takeout bag?
Why did they all act like they didn’t know her?

***

P.S. As always, you are more than welcome to use this prompt to inspire your post. If you decide to write something, be sure to pingback to this post, so that I can get an alert and check out your post. (A post on how to do pingbacks can be found here.) If pingbacks are not your thing, feel free to simply leave a link to your piece in the comment section below. The more, the merrier!

Stay golden,

Signature.

***

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Julie de Rohan

understanding emotion-driven overeating

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