Chapter 12:

(Tristan) In Search of a Single Tea Bag

Cafe Eris

Today is the day I die.Bookmark here

It was an okay life I guess. I made it to 19, that’s not too bad. Bookmark here

Although, dying at the hands of Rika Park is really not ideal, especially at this cursed job, over a stupid tea bag.Bookmark here

My legs felt numb, but they were definitely still moving. I mean, they had no other choice. At this point I was running on pure survival instinct. Bookmark here

I rummaged through the entire backroom and Scanta’s office. This was an emergency, so I’m sure he’d understand. He also always leaves the door open, so I take that as an invitation. Bookmark here

Inside the room, I found random stuff strewn all over the place and cups of three week old coffee scattered throughout, which was sad because he literally owns a café. Where are his standards?Bookmark here

There were also a series of doors and stairs leading out from his office.Bookmark here

I took the chance.Bookmark here

If you couldn’t tell, I was pretty desperate.Bookmark here

I chose a door and prayed for success. I walked for who knows how long, but I could still faintly hear Wabong and Rika’s small talk. My adrenaline carried me through several hallways, passages, and dark rooms all in search of a tea bag. Or maybe some tea leaves, anything. Please. Bookmark here

At some point, I’m pretty sure I fell through a trapdoor or something, but it’s fine. I know my way back...I think. The architecture of this place was complicated but still intentional and organized.Bookmark here

Then, I finally found it. The storage room. Bookmark here

Half of it was drowning in dust but it didn’t look abandoned. Just messy. There was a large metal box halfway through a door frame behind the ugliest curtain I’ve ever seen in my life. It was like the plaid one at the front of the store, except this one was brown and purple, utterly atrocious. It had MCTTM carved on it. What the heck does that even mean? I didn’t have time to figure out how to access it from the other side, and frankly I didn’t care either. It didn’t look like it had tea in it.Bookmark here

I rummaged through heaps of random things like antique cutlery, buttons, black of white photos of planes, shady looking bags of stuff that I didn't open, etc etc, hoping to stumble upon a single life saving tea bag, but no luck. Bookmark here

I paced around thinking of my options. It was pretty dark in here but if I left and went back to the café, I’d be dead meat for sure. Bookmark here

I leaned against one of the shelves exhausted. The slight bump was enough to knock over an expensive looking vase. Well, more than I could afford. I stood there and watched as it hit the ground and shattered into a million little pieces. It was an appropriate metaphor for my mental state right about now.Bookmark here

I wonder if anyone heard that. Bookmark here

I leaned down to clean up the dark blue shards and noticed something under the glass, a small black USB. A super old model too.Bookmark here

Should I take it? Or should I be smart and leave it somewhere after I clean up the mess. Maybe I should be honest with Scanta and hope he doesn't reduce my pay. Maybe he’ll appreciate my honesty. You never know with him though, he’s way too unpredictable. Also, I still don't have any tea.Bookmark here

I dragged my hands down my face. This was truly a low point.Bookmark here

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