Pulling Her HEARTSTRINGS Episode 1
Pulling Her HEARTSTRINGS Episode 1
A story written by HAPPY
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🍞BRUCE’S BAKES AND BREAKFAST🍰
Saturday: 06:00 am.
Do not sleep Umbria….. do not sleep Umbria….. do…..not…..
“Oh my goodness!” I jumped up at the suddenness of the sound.
Did I just sleep?
Oh my gosh….the icing is allover my face.
I used my finger to scrape the icing from my face and put it in my mouth.
“Umbria,” Margaret called again.
“Yes?” I replied sweetly and smiled at her.
“You know there’s still icing on your cheek and nose,” she pointed out.
“Oh, there is?” I put it into my mouth again.
“That’s disgusting, you know that?” she asked making a face.
I shrugged and face my worktable. “Couldn’t let it go to waste,” I said.
Damage scan: the cake doesn’t seem to be ruined much. I’ll just have to add a little bit of icing and brown sugar to the coating.
I wiped at my eye.
Gosh, I’m so damn sleepy.
“You didn’t get enough sleep again,” Maggie voiced out my thought.
I nodded. “Yeah. I finished the chores by twelve last night, and I had to stay up finalizing the designs of some cakes, while doing some research…. and oh em gee, guess what I stumbled upon on the internet!”
I hastily dipped my hand into my apron and brought out my phone.
I scrolled to the gallery app, and clicked on the screenshot album.
“See!!!” I announced and shoved the phone in her face. “Isn’t he dreamy???😍”
Maggie took one look at the picture, then at me, and said, “mmm,” while shaking her head.
Arrgh, this Margaret Kent! Always so practical!
Margaret and I go way back. She’s been my best friend for as long as I can remember. An advisor, shoulder to cry on after my three recent breakups, and the sister I’ll never have. She’s twenty, that’s two years older than me. She’s pretty, shorter than I am….and is the sensible one😒. If not for her, I’m not sure I’d be this strong girl I am now.
And yeah, she’s hellbent on protecting me from another heartbreaking experience.
“Aw come on Maggie, just look! He’s so handsome… his face perfectly sculptured….I’ll swear he was handmade by the gods!”
Maggie peered into the phone. “Wow. OK, I’ll agree with you. He is quite handsome alright. But don’t go building a fairytale on him, you know where that’s gonna lead you,” Margaret stated matter-of-fact.
“Pfft,” I blew out air through my mouth.
Nobody needed to remind me: handsome guys were bad news for me, having gone out with three only to get my ass dumped, they were players, thinking their good looks were everything and that with just a snap of their fingers girls would come flooding around them.
Unfortunately, I’ve been a victim thrice. Not anymore.
With a determined nod, I dumped the phone back into my apron pocket and smiled in return to Maggie’s concern look.
“Let’s get everything set before opening by seven when Bruce B’s gonna turn up,” she said.
“Yeah, that man can be a real pain in the ass,” I concurred. “But I keep wondering why Louisa and Carl can’t be early for once in their lives!” I complained, referring to our colleagues.
The four of us worked here at Bruce’s Bakes and Breakfast part-time.
The bell above the door jingled, signalling the arrival of somebody.
“Well look who it is, talk of the devils,” I mumbled.
“Hey girls,” Carl greeted and wore his apron. “All set?”
“Yupp,” I replied.
“Humph, lazy if you ask me,” Louisa sneered. She’s the annoying one among us and is not my friend.
“Shut up Louisa,” Margaret hissed.
We were done setting up.
Bruce B would soon be here.
I checked my phone for any messages about school in our group chat. What the hell….I’ve been removed! Damn it, those rich sophomores think it’s all about them.
The bell jingled again, and Bruce B came in belly first😄He has a huge stomach.
We greeted him, and he replied cordially. He’s friendly. He wore his white chef suit and his cook cap, and grinned as the first customer breezed in: two old couples.
“Okay fellas, get to work!” he said in his gruff voice.
🕙 🕥 🕚 🕦
“Gosh, I’m so damned tired,” I muttered to myself as I slumped on a chair in the store room.
This nonsense will have to stop soon. Hannah can’t keep treating me like a dog, I’m her daughter for crying out loud!
Ouch, my neck hurts.
It’s afternoon. We’re on break now, because at lunch hour, customers will troop in and we’ll get busy again.
If only I could catch some sleep….
“What the fuck, Louisa you scared the shits outta me!” I yelled back.
“Yeah, scaredy baby. Bruce B’s looking for you,” she spat out and left.
Sometimes I feel like knocking manners into that blockhead.
With a loud yawn, I walked into the kitchen where Carl, Maggie, Louisa and Bruce B were seated or standing.
“What… is this an… YAWN!…. impromptu meeting? Is Louisa getting sacked?” I asked hopefully, making Maggie and Carl laugh while Louisa burned in anger.
“Stop this childishness,” Bruce B chastised in his gruff voice and we all became silent. “There’s an important issue at hand. Here, Margaret read this,” he gave Mag a paper.
” ‘Royal Primrose Baking School. This is to inform all citizens from every state of the Royal Baking talent hunt……’ ”
She kept reading, but I wasn’t listening for a while.
“You’re dozing again,” Carl said.
Meekly, I peeked into Bruce B’s face, and the look of disappointment was visible.
“What is wrong with you? You’re my best baker, but I’m having second thoughts of entering you into the competition.”
“What competition?” I asked.
“Oh boy, here we go again,” Louisa said.
I glared at her, and she rolled her eyes.
“It’s a baking competition, Um. The each person would have to bake a suitable cake for the princess’s tenth birthday, and the one that’s picked would get a scholarship into any school of their choice,” Maggie summarized.
”Wow!” I exclaimed.
“Yes, wow. And you’re going,” said Bruce B.
“What, I can’t go,” I objected.
“She can’t, chef. Take me instead,” Louisa jumped.
Bruce B ignored her. “Why?” he asked me.
Because my parents are poor, my mom’s abusive and my dad is usually away until he got sick and can’t move anymore, so breadwinning has fallen on me.
I can’t say that.
Only Maggie knows of my problems. Carl too has a hint. I don’t wanna be pitied.
“Nothing,” I said instead.
he was cutoff by the jingling of the bell.
It’s 12:00 pm. Customers for lunch break.
“Everyone back to work. We’ll discuss this later,” said Bruce B and we all dispersed.
After work that day, Maggie, Carl and I strolled along the busy but not really clean street of Queens, where we lived. It’s like the poor part of the city.
I kicked gravels as I walked, thinking about the competition.
Its a really good opportunity for me and my poor father. But that’s it, if I leave, who’ll care for him? Hannah, my mom, was a very weird woman, not dependable that’s for sure. There’s no way I’ll leave dad in her care.
“You’re still thinking about it, right?” Carl asked softly.
“Yeah,” I whispered.
“Um remember, things happens for reasons. You’re obviously the best baker there is so….”
“I don’t know Mag….”
We reached the junction to Maggie’s house. She held my hand and squeezed. “Promise you’ll say yes,” she whispered.
She hugged me, waved to Carl and walked off.
The two of us continued, without talking.
I’ve always found it strange that Carl seemed speechless when we were alone. But it’s a good thing now, cause I’m alone with my thoughts.
” Whoops, we’ve reached my bustop,” he chuckled. “See you tomorrow.”
“Bye,” I replied absent mindedly.
I walked on, so deep in thought that I didn’t hear the car coming behind me, until it honked loudly making me jump outta the wat.
“Hey! Watch where you’re going, jerks!” I yelled at the sleek black car speeding off.
Ugh, another item to my bad day list.
“Who was that?” I asked, turning down the volume of my headphone and twisting around to take a look at the person behind.
“No one your highn…. ehn, sir. Just a commoner,” my driver replied.
I shrugged, and increased the volume back.
“You don’t expect me to use my own money and buy stuff for you, mom!” I yelled, throwing the list in her face and stomping towards my room.
“Oh, now you talk back at me?” she yelled after me, “you broke girl! You’re so broke your baloney has no first name!” she insulted me.
I paused at my door. “Oh yeah, well this broke ass baby’s gonna be rich someday. Just you watch!”
I slammed the door before she could come up and hit me.
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