#64 All I Really Want is Friends (500 words)

Inspired by: All I Really Want to Do

On Ein’s second day of work, he woke up much later and left at an appropriate time. He arrived at the same time as his manager, Douglas Berry. 

“Hey, you’re back! That’s a good sign.” 

“Have you had people not come to the second day before?” 

“More often than you’d expect. People can’t handle the high stakes lifestyle, I suppose.” 

“It didn’t seem any different than any other lab I’ve worked in.” 

“That stings a bit. I don’t like to think of my labs as any run of the mill lab.”

“I didn’t mean to imply anything.” 

“Too late, we’re enemies now.” 

They walked into the building in silence. Douglas tried his hardest not to break, but after a few steps burst out in laughter. 

“I’m just kidding, I don’t care! As long as work gets done and everyone is friendly, my job is done.” 

“Phew, I don’t need another manager that hates me.” 

“How many managers have you had that hate you?” 

Ein thought for a moment, “all of them?” 

Douglas stopped, “what are you doing that makes your managers hate you so much? You’re not a troublemaker, are you?” 

“I was just joking.” 

“Joke! You’re funny! Why don’t we get lunch together? Let’s get lunch and talk about your future.” 

“Uh, okay.” 

Douglas went to his office, and Ein entered the lab. Jen had already arrived and was getting the instruments warmed up.

“Douglas just asked me to get lunch with him.” 

“Oh, great. That means I’ll be alone all afternoon.” 

“Why? It’s just lunch.” 

Jen moved closer and spoke in a hushed tone.

“He does this to every new hire. He bills the hospital and takes the person out all afternoon. I think he’s lonely.” 

“There are probably worse ways to welcome new employees.” 

The morning flew by, and Ein began performing some of the tests himself while Jen supervised. At twelve o’clock flat, Douglas entered the lab and tapped on his watch. 

In the hallway, Douglas asked, “So, where do you want to go?” 

“I’m not picky, somewhere, vegetarian?”

“Vegetarian. Yeesh, you’re making me work for this friendship, huh?” 

“I mean, it doesn’t need to be vegetarian as long as there is something vegetarian to eat.” 

“Hmm, all right, I’ve got it.” 

Douglas drove to the restaurant he clearly wanted to go to. Sure enough, there was one vegetarian thing on the menu.

“This is great, I hate choices anyway. This makes it easy.” 

“Perfect! You are a dream companion, you know that? Don’t say much, not picky. If you were a woman and I was twenty years younger, I’d scoop you up!” 

“My lose!” 

“What do you think is the most important thing you need to do your job?” 

“I really am fine just being left alone and given a set of tests that need to be done. Minimal oversight, and I’ll do my best.” 

“Fantastic. I think this will be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. To friendship!” 

They clinked their glasses and ate.

Published by einquin

Writing personal exploration flash fiction as well as building the foundations for a comic book universe.

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