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Rated: ASR · Short Story · Action/Adventure · #2239946
Gideon's a good guy but when his girlfriend is in danger he thinks of a devious scheme
QWERTY keyboards were all lined up on the bottom of the store-font window, set neatly on top of a red velvet effect with a little white dusting, perfectly set, thought Gideon, for the time of year. To most people it must be imagined the interest would rather be fixed on the televisions and computer monitors above those utilitarian and increasingly irrelevant products yet for some reason or other Gideon just fixated on them alone.

He considered himself an expert on all things keyboards; from the history on typewriters, the process of cleaning and what exact model a customer required for their own pleasure - it just satisfied his soul.
All the rest just didn't seem to matter, though of course he had to learn about microwaves, computer mice, laptops, etcetera. He did after all work as a Customer Assistant at a very generic general electrics store. So whenever a customer entered looking for a washer or a clock he was on hand and as helpful as anyone else, but if they looked for a computer he keenly walked over and managed to get them away with the computer they wanted and the keyboard they didn't even know they needed.

The commission attracted more veteran staff yet somehow his enthusiasm at every turn he got in his first few months at the store had made him the go to guy. It was all word of mouth he supposed and perhaps a nod to him from senior staff who didn't want to deal with customers yet considered him likely to get a sale.

Christmas was going to be a busy time of year he anticipated. Not many would first think of a keyboard as a great gift yet he had already convinced a few otherwise who left happily with a premium keyboard to give to their sons or nieces or colleague. The window display was a coup d'etat for him, not many thought leaving room for a full row of keyboards made sense and yet once again he' won them over, even if as a compromise they filled in the bottom shelf.
With it he hoped to inspire a few more casual sales and attract in fellow keyboard enthusiasts, who he always enjoyed meeting.

He glanced at his watched and decided he could take lunch now. He'd a date of sorts with Stacey and thought he'd best be early.
Walking over to The New Place, which was one of the older establishments in town, he looked over the street to watch the first Christmas shoppers milling over the high street. Then he spotted Stacey's car at the bank. He moved on to the doorway and popped in. Seeing Stacey in the queue he waved and made a hand gesture to tell her he'd get them both a table.

Walking over, while peeking at other stores' displays, he tripped, without falling, on a loose pavement tile. Glancing down he noticed a few notes of cash were dropped outside Stacey's car. Unsure if she dropped them or not he picked them up and rang her.

"Hey Staice, just .." he got out.
"Hi Gideon, are you in yet. I'm just thinking I mightn't have time to get anything to eat just order me a tea."
"Okay," he responded to Stacey's request. She always thought a head, sometimes too quickly. "I'll just get you tea but I noticed there's around eighty pound outside your car is it yours? Are you meant to depoist it?"
His mind numbed a bit as he walked back to the bank, continuing the conversation on the phone, not noticing the displays or any other dropped coinage.
He entered the bank gave her the money, saying little then made his way on to the café. He glanced again at his watch, ten minutes already elapsed. At least the queue isn't bad, he thought once inside the heat of The New Place. He ordered at he counter nd sat down at a window seat and positioned himself so he could see her coming.

The waiter set the tea and his coffee down. Then Gideon waited for Stacey, originally planning to drink his once she arrived he thought it getting cold as time marched on and so started to slip.
He glanced at his watch, the plate arrived, he began eating. Leaning over to feel the pot Stacey's tea was in he thought it cold and decided to ring her again.
No answer.

The phone rang on the second time, and again no answer.
He stretched his neck to see if Stacey's car was still there, it was and he began to wonder what was keeping her.
He left his food made a request for boiling water for his flask and got a tea spoon.

Briskly walking back to the bank, he again looked at the displays but only briefly and in passing trying o calm his nervous at what he was expecting to find.

The front door was still unlocked at the bank, even though it was it's lunchtime now. He entered the porch and peered in through the glass panels of the inner door and noticed a hooded man, with a wire protruding from his mouth and something in his pocket speaking to the teller. Stacey had her back to him but he thought her scared.

He pushed the door open, it was still unlocked. The man burled round.
"Drop that!" The words were distinct enough to catch his meaning though the man never opened his mouth, the lips just moved slightly.

Gideon couldn't tell if there was really a gun, but from the look of it there seemed to be a real enough bomb. The wires he guessed connecting to a dead mans switch in the guys mouth. He put the flask and rolled it to him with a light kick. It was just a ceramic jar with a lid. It stopped halfway between them.

"Empty your pockets!" The command was followed reluctantly. Gideon removed the steel spoon from his pocket and turned out his pockets so the man could see that they were indeed empty. His jacket, wallet and phone he'd left tucked together in a hidden corner of The new Place while the staff behind the counter were microwaving the water. He turned around slowly for good effect.
"Drop that!" Gideon complied letting it fall by his feet and put his hands in the air as he thought was implied.

"What the hell are you doing here?"

"I just came," he tried to force out the words in spite of his fears, "to give my girlfriend some tea." He glanced down at the flask, the man's eyes followed him and as if on some foolish instinct the man stepped forward and bent down to inspect it. Picking it up, he opened the top.

As he did this, Gideon's foot cautiously pressed on the bowl of the spoon, raising the thread. The other foot placed under it and with a brave motion flipped it on his first foot which he kicked up taking the spoon to knee height.

The man looked up a little perplexed when Gideon shouted "Get down!". His knee jolted up to meet the spoon and kick it up further. His upheld hand bent slightly to grab the spoon as it reached it's climax. Then he flicked it and with amazing aim say it enter the open top of the flask. The superheated water instantly rose up from it. He just saw the lips open as the man's eyes widened as the scalding water touched him.

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