The Part Where Alex Meets Jane - 1000 Word Excerpt
“Ow! What in the world?” The man screamed as he felt his entire body pushed out of its current state and materialize onto the tarmac of a 24 hour grocery store.
As he pushed himself up from the ground in a state of confusion, his eyes fell upon a young woman doing the same thing not far from him - her face red, and her expression equally confused.
“Are you alright?” She called from her place on the tarmac.
The man stared at her for a moment until he realized that she was indeed speaking to him and he was not suffering from a concussion-induced delirium.
“Did we just run smack into each other?” He called over to her as he felt a bump began to sprout on his brow.
“Yes, I think we did.” She called back.
“Well that’s not right.” He said as he looked around the area of the supermarket, “People don’t just run into each other while teleporting. You were teleporting weren’t you?”
“Of course I was!” The girl brushed off the front of her pants and walked over to the man, “It’s true though, I’ve never heard of such a thing.”
Both the man and the young woman stood staring at the grocery store taking in the emptiness of the parking lot and the distasteful décor of the building itself. It was definitely not like the supermarkets that the two teleporters were used to. In fact, the very sight of the shabby old building would repel anyone that lived in the upper part of the city.
“It’s an odd place to end up.” The girl finally said after a moment of awkward silence and a brief thought of chocolate.
“Indeed. We must be in the lower part of the city.” The man said, trying to sound like he was taking charge of the situation, when in reality he had absolutely no idea where the two had ended up. “I think we ought to leave.”
The girl looked at him for a moment, “Do you?”
“Yes, it is clear that this place is unsafe. Any area with a supermarket such as that cannot be safe for a young woman.”
The girl blushed, realizing that the man was trying to be protective of her. But what she didn’t know was that in truth the man was only trying to avoid stating that he was the frightened one and not the young woman. The man had never ventured out of his swanky neighborhood except for business. He was what some people would call a snob, of sorts.
The girl was the exact opposite. She wanted to explore the strange neighborhood but to be polite, she decided to agree with the man.
“Well if you’re sure then I suppose it is time for goodbyes.”
The man nodded, “Yes, I’m sure. It was a pleasure meeting you… er….”
“Well it was a pleasure meeting you Jane.”
“Yes quite right and yourself mister…”
“Mister Alex. Well, goodbye.”
And with one last look, the two newly acquainted strangers looked up to the sky and envisioned their destinations only to find that moments later, they remained standing in the parking lot of the rather sketchy 24 hour supermarket.
“Odd.” Alex said, a feeling of fear creeping up on him.
“Odd indeed.” Jane said, excitement brewing within.
“It appears we’re still standing here.”
“Yes, it does doesn’t it.”
At that moment, Alex began to feel a sense of claustrophobia, the world seemed smaller to him. He couldn’t travel to his wanted destination. If he wanted to go somewhere he’d have to…. Walk. A great shudder overtook his body at the mere thought of ground transportation.
Jane’s eyes were fixed on the supermarket, “I think I’m in need of a potato.”
She actually was not in need of a potato for earlier that week Jane had gone grocery shopping and due to a fantastic sale on potatoes, her cupboards were stocked.
Alex stared at Jane for a moment, “A potato?”
“Yes, I require a potato.” She answered, lying through her teeth and then after a second more of staring at the battered 24 hour sign, Jane made her way towards the doors.
Alex watched as the young woman walked away from him. With each step, he felt himself becoming more and more frightened. The feeling of someone watching him crept up from behind and soon all he could think about was being at Jane’s side heading to the doors of the supermarket then, in a blink of an eye, he was.
“Oh my!” Jane gasped as Alex materialized beside her, “You frightened me.”
“I teleported!” Alex cried then immediately started to think of his clean modern home, “But I can’t go home.”
Jane looked at him confused, “That’s really strange Alex but I’m still in need of my potato.” She said, and then walked through the supermarket doors.
Alex found it odd that Jane didn’t care about their problem with teleporting. He’d never experienced anything like it and the mere thought of the problem gave him the willies but Jane seemed to treat it as an exciting adventure. After a quick groan of frustration, Alex joined Jane in the grocery store.
Inside the fingerprint layered automatic doors, the store was empty. The only sign of life was a short, plump, balding man who was staring at Jane with eyes magnified by his bi-focal glasses.
“He’s staring at me like I’m an animal.” Jane said as she glared at the little man. Little did she know that animals did frequent this area and on many occasions, the furry creatures would grace the grocery store with their presence.
Then after a second more of rude staring, the plump little man turned on his cashier stool and scurried off down the canned soup aisle. The sound of his feet upon the ugly linoleum floor echoed throughout the entire building, eventually fading away and leaving only the sound of the chipper grocery store music.
“This place is strange.” Jane said then turned and walked towards the produce.