An Expert Patch Job

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Cammytrice, May 22, 2015.

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  1. Ayla sighed as she gazed out the plate glass window of the shop. It was a bright, sunny morning, and it was Friday, but Ayla wasn't looking forward to the weekend. It meant another depressing weekend alone in her apartment. She heaved another sigh and turned back to her work, ripping the seams to the dress she was altering.

    It had been over a year since she ended up in St. Louis. She and her husband had been heading West upriver when they had come down with fever. Selim had died in hospital, and she had miscarried their baby boy, and her world had fallen apart. Unable to speak English, she found herself nearly homeless more than once, and a long time until she was able to find steady work. Now, she was comfortable and stable, but the hole in her heart and the loneliness she felt were much more difficult to solve.

    She was so lost in her thoughts that she almost didn't hear the delicate bell ringing above the door as it was pushed open. She looked up after a moment, her eyes coming into focus on the customer a moment later.

    "Good morning. I can help you?"
    #1 Cammytrice, May 22, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 25, 2016
  2. Joshua Monro walked in, two garment bags hung over his arm. He took his hat off as he walked in and reached down to give the shirt of his uniform a tug. "Good morning." he said, sounding a little distracted. The time of day wasn't his problem. The problem was that he never noticed problems with his dress uniform until the day he needed it.

    "A friend of mine told me to come here..." he said, putting the bags down on the counter. "Are you familiar with military uniform protocol? My dress uniform is a mess and I need to go to a da-" he coughed. "A captain's dinner tonight and accept some award. I also have some holes in one of my normal uniforms, but that isn't a rush job or anything."
  3. "Pro-to-col?" she sounded out the word, looking a bit embarrassed. She saw the uniform and nodded. "Ah, uniform. I can do. What is, eh, problem?" she asked him, slowly and carefully. She looked around hopefully for her boss to come and take over. She usually did the talking, but Ayla suddenly remembered the woman had gone out, and she was on her own in the shop. She sighed nervously and turned back to him. She found herself looking the dog up and down. He wasn't much taller than her, which was a rare treat, but the man was built like a brick wall. She couldn't help blushing a bit when she tried not to stare at his chest and arms.
  4. His floppy ears twitched when her thick accent came through. Joshua, you idiot. Where are your manners? He smiled and put his hat down on the counter,s tarting to speak more slowly and clearly, but not in a way that might patronize her. "I'm sorry, miss. I am Joshua Monro. I have my dress uniform here," he put his hand on the garment bags he brought in. "I have a ripped seam and, well..." he laughed a little and went ahead and pulled the uniform out of the bag. He held it up and smiled sheepishly. It looked like he partied pretty hard after wearing it last. There were a couple of ripped seams, he was missing a pin (which he planned on replacing himself), a couple buttons were missing, and there was a hastily cleaned up stained that might have once been vomit. "It is in bad shape."

    He put his hand on the other garment bag. "This one is missing a button but I have it in there in a pocket, and I ripped a pocket. I thought I'd get it fixed while I was in."
  5. Ayla looked over the garments, her nose wrinkling delicately at the messy stain. "Yah, I fix. And clean? You say, tonight?" she asked, making sure she understood. She looked over the missing buttons and made a moue of her lips. "For buttons, I maybe can no match, but maybe I replace all? Find same size and colour?" she offered. "Is maybe have more cost, for tonight. Is most take two day for job..." It would be a rush job to have the dress uniform ready for that night. Those always cost more, but she was a bit shy about telling him that part for some reason.
  6. "Oh! I forgot these." He dug around in his pockets and pulled out some buttons. "I went and bought some that matched." He handed them over and smiled. "The extra cost is not a problem. I really need it by 6. If you can. Thank you so much, Miss." he said with a smile, eyes grazing her for a name tag. Not finding one, he put his eyes back on her face and smiled. She was pretty. Very pretty, he realized. Young, too. In a weird way, she reminded him of his ex-wife back when they first met. Only prettier. And sadder. He didn't know what it was, but there was definitely something sad to her.

    "If you can fix this, I will be very grateful. I'm sorry I didn't think to bring it in sooner..." he looked over at the uniform. "But I uh...don't even remember when I wore it last." he said, a sheepish grin coming to his face.
  7. Ayla blushed prettily when she noticed him looking at her. "Ah, ya. I thank you, is make for easy replace," she fumbled, accepting the buttons. "Six o'clock. I make ready. You come then, ask for me. Am Ayla, my name..." Oh dear, she was getting very close to flirting. It wouldn't do to flirt with a customer. She sighed inwardly and took the garments over to the counter and till. She painstakingly wrote out the order and handed it to him. The shop owner had taught her to write a bit, enough to fill out the receipt book, but she was still slow at it.

    "You bring when you come. You pay for clean and fast job now, and for fix when pick up. How long for fix is make price, yah?" she explained, hoping it made sense. This was always the hardest part, explaining the charges, and her paws twisted together nervously as she talked.
  8. Considering that the chief's job meant he had to do things like stop illegal immigrants (not there in Saint Louis, but at some of his other stations), he was used to picking out English from thick accents. He was patient as she spoke, his floppy ears trained forward and his tail still wagging slowly, though a bit faster than he thought was probably polite. Ayla was a very pretty name. She was cute when she blushed. And, he scolded himself, probably young enough to be my daughter.

    He pushed such thoughts from his head and followed her to the counter, listening and nodding as she spoke. Ok, so he needed to pay now for the rush job and the cleaning, and he'd pay later for the repairs themselves, and he needed his ticket. He folded the paper she gave him and pulled out his wallet, tucking the paper away. "Sounds good, Miss Ayla." He pulled out the money he owed her then and handed it over. "Thank you very much. You've been very patient with me." he said with a bright smile. "I'll see you at 6."
  9. Ayla blushed even brighter when he smiled at her, immediately flustered. She pretty much forgot all her English and just nodded dumbly for a moment. "Ah, yah. Six." She took the money and put it quickly away into the till. Gathering up the garments, she took them and put them at the front of the rack, meaning they were next to be worked on. She hurried back to her machine, almost hiding behind it as she rushed to finish up the alterations she was doing so that she could get to work on his uniforms. She did glance back up at him again and smile shyly from behind the machine, though.
  10. He lingered for a few minutes, watching her move his clothes around, then watching her sew. He smiled at her finally and waved, wishing her good-bye before walking out of the store. Well, his morning had gotten quite a bit better. Now then, back to work...

    At 5:15, he walked back into the shop and up to the counter. He smiled and waited to be noticed, looking around for Ayla. The girl had been stuck in his head all day. It didn't help that he knew he'd be seeing her later in the day, and it was finally time for that! He shifted his hat around in his hands as he waited, a smile on his face and his tail wagging.
  11. Ayla looked up in a bit of a panic. He was early! She was just in the middle of sewing on the buttons to his uniform jacket, which would leave her enough time to press the garments before six. She hurried up to the counter, the jacket still in her paws. "Ah, are early," she said, a bit uselessly. "Is, eh, still need press." She looked worried and nervous, not wanting him to be upset that the garments weren't ready yet. "You are say ready at six, yah?" she asked him, suddenly panicked that she'd remembered the time incorrectly. She wanted to cry, and as much as she tried, she certainly looked like she was about to burst into tears. What was wrong with her? She usually stood up to angry customers quite well, but he hadn't even said anything yet, and she was so afraid of that he would be disappointed in her.
  12. Oh god she was going to cry! "Oh, no, I'm early." He gave her the most sincere smile he could. "I finished up my work early and decided to just come on over. Don't worry." He swept a handkerchief out of his pocket and checked it to make sure it was clean before handing it over to her. "I said six. You're right." He smiled, leaning on the counter. "I didn't mean to upset you, Miss Ayla. You must have had a very busy day. I still have an hour before I need to have the uniform on. We're still going right on time."
  13. Ayla sighed in relief, blushing quite pink at getting herself so worked up for nothing. She shook her head at the offered handkerchief sheepishly, and gave him a smile that only trembled a tiny bit. "Is, eh, it is okay. I go to finish now..." She backed away, bumping into her work table, before hurrying back behind it to resume working on the buttons. She forced herself to keep her eyes focused on her work, even though she could sew buttons in her sleep. He made her nervous, but not in a wholly unpleasant way. She just didn't know what to do with these feelings she was having for him. She'd never felt this way about Selim...


    She could hardly believe she'd almost forgotten about her late husband. He was still the man of her heart. Ayla unconsciously touched the locket that hung around her neck as she thought of him, her eyes going a bit sad as she continued working.
  14. The chief watched her, but tried not to stare. Occasionally, he turned to look around the shop at the other hanging clothes and whatnot. He wasn't in a hurry. He probably should have been, but he wasn't. He had given himself plenty of time to get back to the ship, get dressed, and make the dinner. Being late wasn't an option, so there wouldn't be too much time for chit-chat with the pretty girl before he left, which might have been why he was early.

    "If you don't mind me asking, where are you from?" he looked over at her again, finding her soft features much more pleasing to look at than the various clothing hanging up behind the counter.
  15. Ayla blinked up at him, a bit surprised at his question. Mostly since most customers didn't care to chat with her. "Oh, ah. Am from Turkey," she explained, blushing a bit at the attention. "I am not in America for very long time..." She checked the buttons to make sure they were secure, then took the garments over to the ironing board. The irons sat on a small apartment-sized electric stove. Once the first garment was arranged properly and covered with a sheet to protect it from burning, she picked one of the irons up and spit on the bottom of it to test if it was hot enough.
  16. "Turkey? Wow. That's a trip. I haven't been in Saint Louis for too long either. About six months but I'm here for a couple more years. My retirement is actually creeping up but I might stay in longer." He shrugged, rubbing the back of his neck.

    "Your English is pretty good for not being here long." He said, hoping she'd take it as a compliment, because that's how he meant it. "I've never been out of the country myself,, that's a lie, I've been to Cuba and Canada..."
  17. Ayla blushed and nodded at the compliment, but she didn't look up at him, instead making sure she focused on her ironing, not wanting to crease the garment in the wrong place, or burn it despite the protective cloth. When her iron cooled, she replaced it on the stove and picked up another one.

    "I must learn very quick," she explained, a bit evasively. "I am, eh, only me. No family..." Her words died off quickly and she tightened her lips, focusing even more on her work.
  18. Joshua nodded and smiled. "I bet. I'm sorry to hear it's just you. I'm almost in the same boat." He sighed and looked around the shop. "My ex-wife and our kids live in New York, so it's just me here. A lot different than being an ocean away, but still not how I'd prefer it." He looked back at her and smiled. "You seem like you've got a good, steady, honest job, and there's a lot to be said for that."
  19. Ayla returned the nod, but didn't smile. In fact, she frowned softly instead, fighting to keep her face somewhat neutral. "Is hard to find. Was not supposed to have need for work. We are going to West to start farm. But...Selim, he die. We are sick on boat with fever, get off here and go to hospital. I am get better, but I lose baby. And Selim...he is no get better..."

    She put the iron back on the stove but didn't pick up the next one just yet, staring at the heated element for a few moments, fiddling with the locket at her neck. Finally shaking her head, she picked up the next iron with a sigh. "Am sorry. I do not want to give sad story to you..."
  20. "Jesus...I'm sorry to hear that..." He wished it was the first time he had heard something so sad, but he had worked in the Florida keys trying to stop illegal immigration for a time. It was hard listening to stories of people coming for a better life and usually losing half of their family to do it...

    He looked down and fiddled with some things on his uniform for a moment. "It's alright." he looked up at her and smiled. "If I've learned nothing else from my job, it's that people need to talk about things like this. It helps." Not that he ever took that advice to heart personally, but that wasn't the point. Who the hell did he have to talk to anyway?
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