Flash fiction on the perils of the supermarket checkout.
I loathe supermarkets; I think most sensible people do. I’d rather shop online, but as my computer was on the blink, I had to brave the terrors of my local superstore. My girlfriend agreed to accompany me.
“I need a trolley, not a basket”
Angela looked at me. “You’re only buying food for yourself.”
“It’s not the food, it’s the drink.”
Angela rolled her eyes, “Come on then, let’s get this over with.”
To save time, we decided to split up. I gave Angela half of my shopping list. “Don’t forget the sunflower oil”, I told her.
Now that I had only half a list to get through, I breezed through the shopping. I kept a lookout for Angela as I marched up the aisles, but I never saw her.
I decided to use the self-service machines, even though I hated those things with a passion. They never worked properly and were just another way the supermarket could cut its costs.
“Please scan your first item.”
How that calm snooty voice irritated me. I picked up a bag of frozen peas.
“Your girlfriend has left the store.”
I looked around. Who was talking to me?
“Your girlfriend has left you.”
Surely it wasn’t the machine?
“Your girlfriend has found another man.”
Yes the calm, slightly supercilious voice, was talking to me.
“Your girlfriend has found someone better than you.”
I stood there goggling at the screen.
“Your girlfriend never really liked you.”
This couldn’t be happening.
“Your girlfriend knew you were second best.”
Who could be better than me?
“What’s the holdup here?”
A large blonde haired woman shook my arm.
“My girlfriend’s left me.”
“That’s very sad, but there’s a line waiting. Scan your items please.”
Meekly, I complied.
I never saw Angela again.