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Cupcake Kissin’ 16 – Alex Ankarr
So sue him, nine p.m. and he settles down with a salad and a glass of wine, and he watches it.
Okay. He watches it twice. It’s well-plotted, okay? Surprisingly well-written. The actors know their stuff, and do the job with flair and élan.
And, yeah, Mack is hot as hell in it. And by the end of the second viewing, Caspar just may be a little tiny bit starry-eyed and wistful about him. (And a little bit starstruck and excitable, when he remembers that, hey, he’s actually met the guy. That aunt Gertie was on first name terms with him. Maybe the old girl didn’t just leave him a bakery, a thriving business. Maybe she – unwittingly – left him a future husband, too. Hey, a guy can dream, right? Caspar, if truth be told, generally always likes to have a little crush on someone or other, to nurse and cherish along. It brightens life up, and it does no harm, and it’s a slightly sad little substitute for an actual boyfriend when he’s going through a dry spell, realistically. He expects the current dry spell to probably continue on for quite a while. He’s so god-damn busy.)
So, TV off, lights dimmed and the cat snoring in the kitchen, Caspar tucks himself up in bed and expects pleasant dreams, following on from pleasant daydreams. He dreams, a little bit, about Mack, which is probably going to be his definition of pleasant dreams, from now on.
On the Monday they do get a Mack-related customer, though sadly not the man himself. Caspar wouldn’t have known, because he’s in the back at the time, trying to rescue a batch of red velvet that he’s made the most horrible hash of icing. He’s had a telling off from Sandy, and another from Sophia, the senior supervisor, and all in all he’s not feeling terribly managerial and important and senior and business-ownery, what with the reprimands and the pinkness of his overall. But he’s called out of his abstraction, when Sandy, the junior sales staff on duty, pitter-patters to the back-room door and hisses at him. He looks up and she’s positively grimacing with excitement.
‘Come out, come out, it’s Sara!’ she whispers, a whisper so loud it could probably carry to the back of a theatre on-stage.
This doesn’t mean a damn thing to Caspar. He’s never heard of a Sara, but then Sandy is rather given to carrying on conversations with him that she’s begun in her own head some time before, so that she forgets what he actually knows, and what she’s just been mulling over herself, and launched into the minute she sees him. It doesn’t prevent her being completely exasperated, when she sees by his face that he’s failing to keep up with the narrative. ‘Oh, hell. Sara, Mack Langot’s personal assistant! Come out and meet her! She’s nice. A little bit bossy, maybe, but nice.’
Well. It’s not quite the same thing as having an actual TV star visit the bakery, but it’s a bit of excitement in the day nonetheless. Caspar gets himself out to the counter, to see what he can see, see what’s going on.
Sara is dark-haired, pretty, dressed in the vertiginous pitch of high fashion and has a very sly look on her face, peering over her dark glasses. And her sly look seems to be reserved for Caspar. When Sandy introduces him, voluble and eager and loud and breathless, she looks faintly surprised that someone has taken the trouble. ‘Oh, I know that,’ she says calmly. And she looks back at Caspar, and that is definitely a little grin on her face. ‘Mack mentioned you,’ she says.
And Caspar would like to know a lot more about this mention. About exactly how detailed it was, and what kind of areas it got into, and if it was just the once or if Mack had chanced to mention him multiple times, and if Caspar’s eyes or ass had come up at any point in this conversation, and… Well. Just whoa, really. Even Caspar knows when he’s getting a little bit out of control.
It’s probably fortunate, that Caspar actually has little chance to respond, or more accurately to get a word in. It’s Sandy who leaps to response, with Sophia off serving another customer – and giving Caspar a little glare that he failed to get in there first and demonstrate his new mastery of customer service. He gets no respect! Not in his induction phase, at least. When his two years are up, they’d better be dancing to a different tune, he thinks!
‘What, did he mention what a terrible boss Caspar is?’ Sandy gets in immediately, sending him a winking glance. ‘He’s a real Legree, this one. He’s got a dungeon down below in the basement, and if we’re naughty or don’t hit our targets we get a whupping!’
Sara laughs, and widens her eyes, probably just to play along. Caspar hopes. ‘Oh, I won’t mention that part to Mack. He might like it too much!’ she says, slyer than ever, and Caspar gets another grin out of her. And then, unfortunately, she’s off, out of there.
Sandy leans her elbows on the counter, and gazes after her dreamily, gazing into space. ‘Do you think she meant it?’ she asks Caspar, sighing a bit.
‘What?’ he asks, because he was just wondering himself. ‘That he talked about me?’
© Copyright Alex Ankarr 2014
No unauthorised reproductions allowed. All rights reserved to the author. No inspirations for characters drawn from real-life individuals, no resemblance to real individuals intended.
Photo credit: Lyn Whitfield on Flickr, public domain.