The bell tied to the door handle swung side to side, hitting against the door as three men with muscles bulging through their black T-shirts came walking in. The leader had a long jagged scar on the right side of his face. He led the other two men inside with confident strides as they made their way over to the cashier, they occasionally bumped into the customers. They ignored the annoyed 'heys' from them and kept going.
I did not see them at first, completely preoccupied at the front counter taking and making orders. The cafè was understaffed only me and another employee. I had to do more than one job- take the orders, serve the food, and clean up the tables after too. It was a tiring and underpaid job to do but I had to take what I got. When you're desperately in need of money, you're not picky about what jobs you get.
It was when someone knocked his knuckles loudly on the counter top when I looked up and saw him. He was here. David was here.
David is a debt collector. A frightening one who did not make any empty threats. If he said he was going to go after your family, that was exactly what he was going to do. He was a man of his word.
My dad had borrowed some money from him for his business, and when that business had failed so horribly, he became another one of David's debt collectors. It was just my luck that the man who is my so called father killed himself and gave the debt to me as a farewell present.
David gave me a smug smile, And gestured for me to come closer. I put down the cup I was holding and slowly make my way over to him. "David, what brings you here?" I asked.
"Miss Keira." He said my name mockingly. "Why do you think I came to find you?"
"I know I'm a bit late on paying this month's payment, but if you give me some more time, I'll gather enough for the interest and pay you. You didn't need to come personally to me for this." I faked a smile.
"Of course I had to come personally, Keira. It's money we're talking about. Money. The world is all about money. I'm all about money, baby."
"Yes, yes. I'll have the money by the end of this week, I swear. I'll have it by then."
"I don't know if I'll be able to wait that long. I don't have a lot of patience when it comes to money." David said, picking on his nails.
"Just this once, trust me and wait until the end of this week." I held out my hands desperately. "I've always been on time with the payments. It's just that this month I couldn't come up with enough money in time."
He waved my plea with his hands, "This place's owner, your boss. Why don't you ask him some money?" He suggested as he picked up the business card by the register. "You're a smart girl, Keira. You try talking sweetly to him and if that doesn't work..." He looked over me. "...Your body would work just fine." Two men behind him laughed.
I covered my chest with my arms protectively and took a step back. A bead of sweat rolled down the side of my head. "Haha, you're such a joker." I forced myself to laugh. "My boss isn't that type of a man. He is married and has a family." How was I going to make him leave? I can't let him cause trouble. I needed this job.
"Like I said, I'll have money by the end of this week, David. I'll contact you later, I have to work." More customers began to arrive as the rush hour was just starting.
"Are you trying to kick out our boss?" One of his sidekicks spoke up, accusing me.
"No, of course not!" I waved my hands nervously. "That's not it. I just thought you guys wanted to go back to your work."
David looked around the bustling cafè and suddenly lunged at me, grabbing onto the collar of my shirt. He plunged me closer to him and threatened, "Do you believe I can destroy this cafè right now?"
"Y-yes, I do," I gulped. "What are you thinking of doing?"
"You don't understand just what kind of person I am, Keira. As someone you owe a lot of money to, you should cower in fear when you see me. You need to fear me, the sound of my name, and even my shadow, but I can't sense that fear from you. There isn't enough of it. I think you need a lesson." He released his grip on my shirt and pushed me away. "Boys, show her what true fear of us should be like."
They nodded eagerly with an evil grin and went towards the unoccupied tables. The handful of customers watched them in curiosity and gasped at what they did. They flipped the tables, broke the chairs, threw the customer's food on the ground. Plate and cups were swept off with a loud crash, their broken peices flying everywhere.
"Stop it!" I yelled, hurrying out from behind the counter. "Stop this immediately!" I ran over to one of them, only to be shoved onto the ground by him. I watched as they continued to cause havoc in the cafè.
"That's enough," David ordered after most of the cafè was ruined. "You've got my lesson. Doesn't this make you scared of me?" He smirked. "I'll see you by the end of this week. Tell your boss sorry for this. Maybe you'll be able to keep this job if you're willing to you know," He winked. "I'll get going then."
The three of them left, stepping over the broken peices of glass and wood, leaving me surrounded by the ugly mess. All the customers were gone by now. I went to the door and flipped the sign to 'Closed.'
The other employee didn't say anything and together, we began to clean the mess. Two hours later, when we were done, the boss wanted to have a word with me.
"You know what I'm going to say, right?" He asked with a grim expression.
"Yes, I do. I apologize for what happened today, sir. I really am sorry."
"You were a hardworking employee. It's a shame to let you go, but after what happened, I can't take risk of having it again. It's pitiful for a young woman like you to bear this." He gave me a sad smile.
I nodded in understanding and thanked him for the time I worked with him. I left without getting any money in my pocket. That day, the feeling, as if all the hopes were lost, I don't think I'll ever forget how I felt that day.