She stood at the register taking payments and making tea. A line had formed and she switched into polite efficiency. Ethan stood in line trying to come up with something to say. He just needed her name, maybe even her phone number if the organization was going to be able to track her. If he got that he could pass off the info to another team. Someone else could handle this crossing.
In record time, she had cleared the queue with a collection of payments taken, and greetings extended. Before any decent plan came to his mind she had nearly finished taking his order for a small black tea.
She looked down at the cup in her hand and held a sharpie in the other. “What’s your name?”
She wrote the name on the cup and set it at the back of the cup line. "Thanks."
Come on, Ethan. Get her name. “And what is your name?”
She looked up to see that he still stood in front of the counter, “Alex.” She smiled. Recognition hit. “Wait, you’re the guy I knocked over on the way in.”
Ethan wanted to wink casually and say something like, ‘you could make it up to me and give me your number,’ but it came out as, “Uh huh.”
She raised an eyebrow even though she still smiled.
The cool air from the drive through swept across his face bringing relief from the heat of the room. “Hi.”
She glanced behind him at the line that must have been forming again. “Can I get you anything else?”
Come on, it's time for words again. “Listen this might sound strange, but running into you was the most interesting thing that happened to me today.” His face flushed a bit as he finished his thought. Okay, stop talking now. He inspected the chocolates and baubles on the counter, “Well, I was wondering if we could grab something to eat after your shift is over.” Brain! What the hell are you doing? This was not the plan! Ethan looked up to see her smile deepen. He hoped it wasn't pitying.



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