There was no way to avoid this man whom I didn’t want to see, on his collision course for my personal space, the smarm of grin and the predatory eyes. He made turning away seem cowardly, and I wouldn’t have him make me do anything. His grin grew when he saw I wouldn’t be leaving and he showed teeth with the same glisten as the spendy beige car outside, impossible not to be his. I would have bet they smelled in some way the same. Though tailored, his clothing bulged here, sagged there, much like the flesh of his face shifted though it should have been handsome. A thirtyish rich successful man, or a parody.
His gait was so assuredly slow I had time to look around the candy store. It was spartan, like a fly-by-night operation, but still had the air of sincerity of a passionate person having done their best, and it looked new and I suspected there was more to come. There were chocolate and candy bars with ridiculously endearing names I’d not heard in decades, colourful netted bags with gums and candy cheap miniatures toys that had not been spat out by machines making billions, collectible by being difficult to find this one from a comic strip and that one that was on television. A nostalgia shop, someone’s toyroom and all their collection, with newer confection mixed in to shore up stock .
“Well you’re a bit of a hero, our very own hero amongst us saving damsels from Benita and me at your own expense”, said the jowly man not two inches from my face, making me regard him; Benita had reappeared from the back room and placing inventory on one of the barer shelves, and if paying attention doing a much better job than the magazine man had.
His words got to me anyway.