Thursday, December 15, 2016

An Unheeded Prophecy

No sun could be seen. A dense, early morning fog blanketed the entire city. This was Elliott's favorite type of weather. It muffled all the sound; everything was peaceful. That morning, Elliott had decided to take a walk through the park. As he languidly slipped through the masses of condensation, he saw two dark silhouettes in the distance. They just stood there. It seemed strange to Elliott given the temperature, but he had seen far stranger things in the town. He came nearer and nearer and then finally walked past. He walked twenty feet, then thirty, then forty, and still, nothing happened. Then he heard the man shout. "Your great fortune, true, it was your ruin." It penetrated the thick fog and seemed much clearer than it should have been. But this didn't matter to Elliott. He was late to work. Again.
Elliott walked through the back door of the Olive Garden and took his ritual last breath of fresh air. He tried to enter unnoticed, as if he had always been there working. Elliott tried to look as if he was simply returning from a trip to the dumpster, but his supervisor, Derek, stood right next to the doorway. Elliott averted his eyes, but that didn't stop Derek from telling him in his gruff tone, "Be in my office in five minutes." "Ah nuts," Elliott was thinking. Derek warned him multiple times that his tardiness would no longer be tolerated.  "A shift is a shift, you can't say it's only a half shift," he had repeated. What a TJ "Henry" Yoshi his supervisor was. 
Elliott sulked around outside Derek's office. He counted off the seconds that he had to himself before facing certain termination of his job duties. Finally, he had no choice but to enter. Elliott opened the door and took in the sight of the thoroughly unprofessional office. The chairs were from the front that were too ugly too use anymore, papers littered every horizontal surface, and it smelled of spoiled grease. Elliott sat down. Derek spoke first. "I've been looking over your records, and Elliott, you are easily the only choice I have." 
"Just get on with it," Elliott thought to himself.
"I got a call from corporate yesterday, and I won't be working here anymore. I've been offered a job at Olive Garden corporate in Orlando, and I need someone to take over from me. I think you're the best one for the job.
Elliott didn't respond.
"If you don't want to, I understand, but I think you have a real future with Olive Garden. I'd recommend pursuing it as a career," Derek continued.
"Thanks, I'll consider it," responded Elliott finally. His tone did not reflect  his words. He stood up and left. Throughout the remainder of his shift, he did indeed, however, consider the offer. He was on a path to become a meteorologist, yes, but it was not going well. He had failed two classes already and was having no greater luck retaking them. "Maybe this is what I am supposed to do," he thought with resignation. "It would be the easier thing to do, I'd have have job security at least," he thought as he left the back door of the Olive Garden into the misty, afternoon air. 

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