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  • Writer's pictureHenry Cavanaugh

Break Away

Francis had listened to his friends complain about working in retail and had to roll his eyes because none of them worked in the fast food industry like he did. He was treated like dirt by both his managers and the customers and the money hardly helped smooth that over. Most days he felt like he was moments away from quitting but what else would he do? His high school grades hadn’t been good enough to get him into college and he didn’t have any miraculous connections that could save him from his personal hell-hole.

After dragging himself through another eight-hour shift where he was made to clean up after some of the grossest customers he’d ever had the misfortune to witness, Francis was simply glad to get out of there. It was only when he began pulling his personal items out of his locker that he realized that the sunglasses he had rescued from a table earlier were still in his pocket. He had collected the glasses in order to stop them from being thrown in the trash and had every intention of returning them should their owner return to look for them, but no such person had arrived and as such Francis figured that they might as well stay with him.

Stepping out into the sun, the young man took a deep breath of the fresh air and pulled the sunglasses on over his eyes. He was glad to have escaped work early enough to still see some sun, even if he only intended to get home as quickly as possible and shower. His unreliable work calendar meant that he didn’t have much of a social life so much of his spare time was sent playing video games late into the night.

As he walked through the city though, Francis had the strange feeling that he was looking at it for the very first time, like a tourist rather than somebody who had lived in the city his whole adult life. Eventually he caught sight of his reflection in a store window and was surprised at what he saw. He no longer wore his ugly mustard-colored uniform but instead a blue tank top that showed off his boulder shoulders and thick arms. Stubble decorated his square jawline and his hair was neatly trimmed, much unlike the greasy mop he had tucked under his work cap. Most strangely, the reflection didn’t actually feel too unexpected to the man.

Smiling at his reflection for a moment, Adrien felt a rush of relief that his sunglasses had still been on the table when he’d rushed back to that fast food restaurant. It would have been a nightmare if they were thrown away - or if somebody else had grabbed them! Now he just needed to catch up to his friends and he could go on enjoying their city break vacation!

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