Every day his first thought is, Flowers.
It isn't something most people spend a lot of time thinking about, unless they were, say, a florist. Which, of course, he isn't. Rather, he is fulfilling his lifelong dream, or something close to it, working as the Station Inspector at a busy Paris train station, Gare Montparnasse. Not exactly what Mother and Father had in mind, but nonetheless, an important job which Gustav takes seriously. Very. Seriously.
So one would think, dearest readers, that a quite mundane aspect of life, such as flowers, would occupy any space in Gustav's mind at all. It seems for the longest time his thoughts have mostly consisted of, Trains, trains, trains. Trains. People come here to get on them, and then to get off them. That's all. The only thing Gustav has to do is make sure this business runs smoothly. And for the most part, it does.
However, lately, he has become-dare I say it-distracted.
Indeed, he has become distracted by flowers.
Well, not so much the flowers themselves, but the one who is selling them. There she will be, day after day, smiling pleasantly at the little old ladies who buy a bouquet on a whim, and then she will smile almost wistfully at the men who buy roses for their loves.
At one time Gustav considered perhaps buying her some roses somewhere else, because after all that would be the gentlemanly thing to do. He actually had the money in his hands and was about to say, "The red ones, please, they appear to be the smelliest," when he realized, Why would she want something she already has? And there that brilliant idea went.
Ever since then, Gustav has hardly worked up the nerve to even look at her. By this point, 'paranoid' would be a good word to describe him. Gustav is slightly paranoid by nature, which he sort of has to be in order to perform his work properly. But now it's her that's making him paranoid, her that's making him constantly glance over his shoulder, and to even doubt his instincts that there's indeed a little thief in this vicinity stealing a croissant at this very moment.
The other day, for example, Gustav was once again engaged in a frenzied pursuit of a slimy child, who had stolen a man's wallet, when he happened to dash right past her. It was like time stopped then and next thing he knew Gustav was flat on his face on the shiny floor. As expected, though, he did end up catching the thief and returning the poor man's wallet. But what bothered him was not the fact that he had tripped, for that happened often but he always got the job done, but it was the reason he tripped. She made him do it.
And yet this almost made him happy. While he was back on his feet in moments, the two of them had locked eyes and he had plainly heard the gasp escape her lips at his little, 'accident.' He felt a strange sense of pride in that she had noticed him, that she was concerned for his well-being. Gustav will never forget that look, her eyes widening in wonderment and an almost motherly manner in which she threw her hand over her mouth in shock.
Yes, Gustav is most definitely distracted.