A shrunken man inspires confidence
|“The Golden Hour” was a fitting name for this time of morning. The gradient sky was gold at the horizon and blue above, with a soft shade of pink in the middle. Darcy admired the sunrise as she got out of her car. The bright yellow sports car seemed almost harsh against the soft hues of the sky. But at 50 it made her feel younger. And these days she was just happy to feel.
Darcy walked through the front door of Johnson and Lamb Furniture.
Darcy looked at Christie and rolled her eyes. She glanced up at the clock. 8:03.
“Please. Three minutes?”
“I’m just kidding, you know,” Christie laughed. Darcy eyed the cheese danish in Christie’s hand.
“From the bakery downtown. There’s a whole box in the back. Leave a bear claw for Aaron, please!”
Darcy barely heard that last sentence as she made her way to the office in the back of the store. She spied the box of pastries and grabbed a cinnamon roll. She felt her phone buzz in her pocket.
“If you order lunch today I have a surprise for you!” the text read. It was from Mike, the owner of the Southern Spoon Diner right down the street. Darcy loved a good surprise, but also knew Mike had a sense of humor.
“Oh yeah? What kind?” she replied.
“A small one. But a good one.”
Darcy sent back an eye roll emoji and she slipped her phone back into her pocket.
“Oh, cinnamon roll, good choice,” Christie said, walking into the room. Darcy watched as Christie picked up a folder with notes from the last few days.
“Yeah, I’ve always been a fan of cinna-“
“Were you able to sell that Broyhill living room suite? Or the queen sized Serta?”
“No, I think they’re good leads, but I couldn’t seal the deal.”
Darcy hated that while at work, perfectly good conversation could be ruined by talk about work. She watched as Christie studied over the rest of the notes.
“Well, maybe today. Looks like you have a few customers scheduled to come back in, so maybe you can close some sales.”
“Maybe? As in maybe we can get lunch from the Southern Spoon today?”
“That’s too funny,” Darcy laughed. “Mike text me and told me if we got lunch there today he’d have a small surprise for me.”
“How do you know that guy again?”
“Just from going in. He made small talk one day, and then got a little flirty, and I guess a friendship just blossomed.”
“Blossomed? Let me make sure I have all the facts. You’re married. He’s married. And he’s ten years younger than you...”
“Oh stop. We’re friends.”
“You don’t smile like that when you get texts from other friends. Just be careful.”
Darcy watched as Christie grabbed another pastry and walked out of the office. She appreciated the advice, but didn’t deem it necessary. Flirting was harmless after all. Or at least that’s what she told herself.
Darcy walked into the office carrying one of the signature black plastic bags from the Southern Spoon. She thought they looked like small trash bags, and an odd choice to package food in. But the salads were anything but trash, and even though open only a short time it had become a favorite of locals.
“Lunchtime!” Darcy called out. She saw Christie waiting anxiously at the desk.
“Good, I didn’t have breakfast and I’m starving.”
“You had two pastries...”
“I’m not counting carbs today,” Christie laughed. “Did you see your boyfriend?”
“Please. And no. I honestly think he’s avoiding me. It seems like every time I go in he’s either not there or doesn’t come out of the kitchen.”
“That’s probably for the best. So no surprise I guess?”
“I guess not.”
Darcy opened the bag and removed the two salads. She passed Christie the one with honey Dijon in it, keeping the ranch for herself. She reached back into the bag for flatware and felt a small box. She removed the box from the bag. It looked like a small jewelry box, the kind a cheap necklace might come packaged in. A small piece of paper was sloppily taped to the top with a single word scrawled on it: SURPRISE.
“What’s that?” Christie asked, pouring more dressing than one person should eat on her salad.
“I guess it’s my surprise,” Darcy said, unsure what the box might contain.
Darcy slowly slid the top of the box. She half expected something to jump out and scare her. Instead she saw a tiny figurine. It couldn’t have been but an inch tall. And it looked just like Mike. Darcy could not believe how lifelike it was.
“What is it?”
Darcy started to answer but then stopped. She could have swore the figurine moved. She blinked her eyes and lifted her glasses up and back down. The tiny figurine was waving at her. And in a way that looked all too real. She quickly pulled the lid back onto the box and sat it in her purse.
“And you’re not going to share?”
“There was- there was only one piece.”
Darcy walked into the bathroom and locked the door behind her. It had been two hours since she had opened the surprise box, and around an hour since she’d slipped it into her blazer pocket. Darcy looked into the mirror. Her vision seemed to be just fine. Maybe she was tired. She knew there was no way the figurine had moved.
Darcy sat on the toilet and fished the small box out of her pocket. She slid the lid off. The life-like figurine smiled.
“In the flesh!”
Darcy almost dropped the box. She started to feel light-headed. There was no way the owner of the local diner was only an inch tall. It was impossible.
“Why- why are you so small?”
“The last time we spoke you told me you were in a sales slump. So I thought I’d help you regain your confidence.”
“And how does you being an inch tall do that?”
“Well we talked about me being an inch tall. And what’d you say you’d do with me?”
“I said I’d put you between my breasts,” Darcy giggled. She remembered that conversation. And she had said that. But she said it assuming it was impossible.
“The way I figure, a woman who’s confident enough to shove a tiny man between her tits is a pretty confident woman.”
“That’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.”
Darcy looked down at the tiny man and chuckled. He must be crazy. She must be dreaming. Darcy was slightly startled by a knock at the door.
“You almost done? Mrs. Jones is here about that Broyhill suite.”
Darcy slowly reached down and carefully picked up the tiny man between her thumb and forefinger. She held him over her voluptuous cleavage, and slowly lowered him into the valley between her breasts. She slowly pushed him down until only his head was visible. Darcy felt Mike struggle to move in his tight, fleshy prison. She walked over and looked at the tiny man between her breasts in the mirror. She placed her index finger on his head and pushed him all the way down.
“I don’t know. It’s a lot of money. And I’m not 100 percent sure it will match my carpet.”
“Mrs. Jones we compared it to the carpet sample, and it matches. And the price is only good this week, it’s a really good deal.”
“I just don’t know.”
Darcy felt Mike start to squirm between her breasts. It must have been hot. Sweaty. Claustrophobic. And there was nothing he could do about it. She was a giant. A goddess. She was in control.
“Mrs. Jones, you want this furniture. You’re buying this furniture. Now we can do cash or card, or 90 day financing. Which will it be?”
“Well I... card. But I’m not paying for delivery.”
“I’ll see what I can do for you.”
Darcy walked to the counter to complete the sale. She looked to see Mike had managed to come up for air, just getting his head and right arm out from between, to him, her mountainous breasts. She giggled as she used her finger to push him back between them, deeper than before.