The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors (halfshellvenus) wrote,
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
halfshellvenus

Idol Survivor: "Tales From The City"

Tales From The City
idol survivor | daily-fic challenge, day 8 | 6x100 words

x-x-x-x-x

I.
The delivery truck was late again, as if Sal didn't have a million things to do today. The store opened in an hour—he'd have to rush to get the produce on the shelves, and he was shorthanded already.

His son Joey usually refreshed the produce display, but Joey was late, too. They'd fought at dinner the night before, and Joey had stormed out and gone who knew where? God, Sal's ulcer was pulsating like a disco….

Joey's mother had died eight years ago. Sal knew he said stupid things sometimes, but he loved his son.

Why wasn't Joey back?


II.
Ali was careful through the turns—bicycling in traffic was not for the faint of heart. He'd been car-doored just last week, and lost his cargo to the streets. No broken bones, though, and minor damage to his bike. He'd been lucky.

His current parcel was due by three. He didn't know what was in it. His policy was no drugs, nothing illegal, nothing dangerous. But it was heavy. It made balancing harder on the turns.

Cab ahead, bus behind, keep peddling. His family needed the money back home, whether it was bowling balls or dumbbell weights that fed them.


III.
With a fine, smooth tenor and moves like James Brown, Earl Williams had once hoped to make it big in music.

Driving the Number 47 bus wasn't the same as Motown, but you couldn't feed your children on dreams. He knew he'd made the right choice.

Every week, he sang with a couple of friends who played guitar and drums, and it helped. He didn't know whether Lavelle thought it was foolish, but he loved her enough not to ask. She'd never tell him if she did.

She was one of a kind, the best luck Earl would ever have.


IV.
The daily commute was hell, but it beat driving. Emma stepped into the building and rode the elevator to the fourth floor, where briefs and depositions waited to consume her day.

Mom didn't look good last night. She needs live-in help. But where to find it? Everyone wanted aides who were kind and honest and capable. How many of those could there possibly be?

Emma shuddered to think of the research and interviews ahead, the risk of hiring someone who wasn't what they seemed.

At least it isn't a nursing home. Not yet.

Because that transition would be absolutely brutal.


V.
That T-beam looked crooked, Harry thought. "Fix it!" he yelled, "Inspector's comin' by today!"

Harry glared at his clipboard. Way too much to do, the project was two weeks behind.

Most of the guys were good workers, but you couldn't beat bad luck. Supplier orders the wrong gauge of pipe—Bam! Three days to get the right one delivered. Coupla guys get stomach flu, pass it around—Boom! Two days gone right there.

Today, they were taking out a utility slab, 'sposed to be four feet over.

Christ. Damn jackhammer jolts were reverberatin' right through the arthritis in Harry's spine…


VI.
Enrique hated this job. The tips were good, but the customers... "Where's my risotto?" and "Tell the chef al dente. Do I need to spell it?"

The job was supposed to be temporary, but he and Victor needed the money for a bigger apartment. Something with an actual bedroom and a closet, instead of a studio with a clothes rack and a kitchen smaller than the handicapped stall in the restaurant's bathroom.

He'd met Victor two years ago at a Carnaval de Ponce celebration. Their apartment was trash, but Victor was amazing.

For Victor, even asshole customers were worth it.


--/--
Tags: drabbles, my_fic, original_fiction, real lj idol
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