I don't own Glee ©
A/N: just because
The alarm clock rings, waking me up from my dream. It's the same dream that I've been having for the last few months, a dream where I live my life on the streets. I can almost feel the cold air hitting my face and each time I bring the thin blanket closer to my body the wind blows twice as hard. Chilly winds powerful enough for me to feel numb. The last five years of my life hasn't gone exactly what I had planned for me. Not finishing college and not perusing my career still haunts me, especially since the accident. That led me to become a waiter that barely makes enough for myself.
"Mommy!" A boyish voice calls for me.
And for my son. I roll onto my side and smile when I see a small boy at the ripe young age of 4 running towards me from the other side of the apartment. He hops on my bed and cuddles besides me. I grin and bury my face in his dirty blonde hair. I run my hand up and down his small arm and whisper good morning. He grins widely and places his tiny hand on my cheek, hi Mommy he says.
"My birthday is coming up soon." His voice is soft like you can barely hear him. "Are we going to visit Grandpa?"
"On your birthday, yes." I answer him, pulling him close to me and enjoying his warmth that I love so much. "What do you want to do on your birthday?"
He thinks for a moment. I look down at him and couldn't help but giggle at his cute thinking expression. He closes his eyes and furrows his eyebrows, pouting his lips and scrunching his nose. He usually thinks deeply when he has that look on. His eyes snap open revealing dark shimmering with excitment.
"Can we play hockey?" He asks hopefully. "On the ice rink!"
I pretend to think about it. He squirms in my arms, trying to get my attention back. I laugh and say. "Of course we can baby. Then after we can go to Grandpa's."
"Yes indeed." I coo at him. "Go brush your teeth now while I make breakfast. I can smell your stinky breath." I lean down close to his face and rub my nose against his.
He giggles and pulls back. "You have smelly breath too, Mommy!"
"What?" I feign a pout. The glint in his eyes tells me that he enjoys teasing me. "My breath smells like rainbows and sunshine!"
"Nuh-huh!" He laughs. "You're so silly!"
"You're silly." I grin. Getting up, I lift him and place him down on the carpeted flooring. "Go brush now, baby."
" 'Kay Mommy." He replies and runs off to the bathroom.
I get off the bed and stretch my body. After releasing a monstrous yawn, I walk off to the tiny kitchen we have, not bothering to fix the bed. What's the point of making a bed when it's going to messy again later on? I go over to the stove and place the pan on it. I turn the dial and walk over to the small fridge while the pan heats up. I pull out a few eggs and a package of bacon.
My mind runs to the tips that I made last night or this morning since I did came home at 3 am. I know I received a five from this one gentleman and his wife and I received two dollars from the trucker and another three from this woman. Numbers fill my mind and I realize I have enough to buy the new hockey stick. I knock an egg against the counter and pull the shells apart over the hot pan. The pan sizzles when the yolk hits the surface.
As the egg cooks, I look over the mail that I received yesterday. Mostly junk but I notice that I got a few bills. Silently praying, I cautiously open the bill for the water and read it. Shit, I forgot the pay the water bill last month! My hand smacks my forehead and I stare at the other two bills, too afraid to open them. If I use the money that I just earned I won't be able to buy Graham his hockey stick.
"I'm done, Mommy!" Graham proclaims. He walks towards me and wraps his arms around my legs.
I smile gently down at him. He's been clingy lately ever since I decided to take a double shift at the diner and leave him in that daycare till 8pm, but if I don't pick him up the couple that lives a few doors down usually offer to watch him any time, maybe cause they don't have any kids of their own. The Schuesters are nice folks though. Sighing, I begin to think of the numbers again. It's hard enough that I have to pay for that day care and the bills, but he'll be starting school next year and I'm not sure how I'll be able to pay for the tuition. I might have to pick up another job…
"Why don't you play with your toys?" I suggest while I turn my attention back to the egg. "I'm still cooking, Graham."
"Okaaay." He lingers a while longer before hopping over the makeshift living room in the middle of the apartment.
Our place isn't big to be honest. It's made for one person because it's just a flat with a 'bathroom' in the left corner and the kitchen is right across from it. The bed that Graham and I share is in the far right corner. It's a king size so it sort of takes almost half of our apartment. It's sad, but at least we have a roof under our heads.
I place the cooked eggs on a plate and begin to cook the bacon. My mind wanders and I can't help but think of looking for another job, perhaps a coffee shop this time. They make good money, I think. I shake my head. Maybe I should be a maid at that Holiday Inn on the other side of the city? No, it's too far from the daycare and Graham gets upset whenever I'm late.
Sighing, I realize that it's going to be tough. I finish the bacon and call Graham to sit at the table. I pop two slices of bread in the toaster and place the plate of eggs and bacon in front of him. I ruffle his hair and walk back to the toaster when the toasts pop out. I toss the bread on the plate and open the fridge to pull out some water and butter.
"Breakfast time!" I present him the fork and butter knife. I twirl around to the cabinet and chuckle when I hear Graham clapping. I pull out two glasses and fill them with water.
"Drink lots of water, Graham Cracker." I order. He doesn't like to drink water a lot and prefers those juice boxes and soda pops. I have to remind him to drink a glass everyday or else he'll be dehydrated and faint while he's playing hockey outside with the other kids like last time.
We eat in silence as usual. I read a copy of the Chicago Tribune while Graham reads the funny's in the comic section. Well he can't read, but he likes to pretend he does just to impress me. I offered to read it to him once and he claims that he can read it himself. I smile at the memory and finish reading about the news. I go all the way to the back to look at the job ads.
"Yes baby?" I say without looking up at him.
"Can we go to Minimum Park after?" Graham cutely asks.
I crack a smile and look up. "You mean Millennium Park?" I correct him.
He grins and nods. "I wanna see The Bean!"
"Sure." I agree to the idea. I'm absolutely tired, but I try to spend every waking moment to be with Graham. I don't want him to think that I'm ignoring him, that's just a terrible thought a child would have. I should know, I had those thoughts in my head when I was his age.
Once we finish breakfast we quickly change out of our pajamas to something more presentable. I put my coat on and wrap my scarf around me. Looking down, I see Graham mimicking me, but it seems that he's having trouble with his own scarf. I giggle and bend down to help him. Once he has his yellow scarf, I pull out his blue hat and snuggly put it on his head. He grins and holds out his gloved hand for me to take.
"So your hands won't get cold." He explains, noticing my lack of gloves.
"Genius." I say when I grasp onto it. "Let's head out?"
It snowed last night and some plow trucks are currently plowing the snow to the side. I hold Graham's hand tightly, making sure he doesn't wander off to look at the things displayed in the windows. He has the habit of doing that and sometimes so do I. We reach Millennium Park and see a good handful of people there. We walk straight to The Bean. It's Graham's favorite because he loves to look at his reflection on it. He would do silly dances and soon he would convince me to dance along with him.
"I see us!" He cries out in joy and runs towards the giant statue.
"Be careful!" I huff out in annoyance. Sometimes he would just go all willy nilly and it always makes me nervous.
I approach Graham and see him make faces at his reflection. I giggle and say. "You know we have a mirror at home. We could have stayed cozy and made faces in the bathroom."
He turns towards me and says reasonably. "This is more fun!"
"Of course it is." I laugh. I bend down and pick him up so we can look at ourselves together.
"Look!" He points at his hair on the reflection. "I have yellow hair." He then points at mine. "And you have yellow hair! Like bananas."
I nuzzle my face on his scarf and correct him. "Not yellow hair, Graham Cracker. It's called blonde."
"Blonde." He tries the word out. His face scrunches in detest. "I like banana hair."
"Banana hair it is." I let him win.
We walk around the place for while, enjoying our time together. We had to go back to the apartment because it began to snow and I didn't want to trudge back home if the snow reaches up our knees. We stayed indoors for a good couple of hours until I have to go to work. I dress up in my 80s Go go girls outfit and grab Graham's bag. Once I dress him back up, we walk towards the daycare that's a block away. I drop him off and watch him run off to the familiar faces of children. I say goodbye to him and walk off to the diner, which is another block.
I walk inside and greet the other employees that are already working. One of the girls, Tammy, tells me that it's her break. She tosses me her notepad and says that she'll be back in twenty-five minutes. I roll my eyes and walk over to a couple that just walked in. I smile brightly and greet them in a preppy voice. I show them to their seat and walk off to let them decide what they want to eat.
"Hey Brittany." Someone says. I turn around and see my boss nodding at me. I smile at her and ask what's up.
She smiles, the kind of smile that doesn't reach her eyes. "I wanna talk to you after your shift."
"Alright." I say, eyeing her strangely. She's usually peppy. "I'll see you at 8 o'clock."
I smile one last time at my boss before walking back to the couple and asking what they would like to order. They tell me that they both want burgers and a couple of milkshakes. I wink at them and skip off to the cook to hand them the slip. I serve more tables as time pass. I collet their respective tips and carry on with my business.
When the hand strikes 8, I see my boss by her little manager's office. I approach her and smile timidly. She has never asked me to talk to her before. She steps aside to let me in her office first. I examine the room and see that it's as plain as it can be. Taking a seat, I watch her as she struts her way towards her desk.
She sits down like she's in charge, which is true. But I don't like that attitude of hers, being superior to everyone and thinking that she can do almost anything. I smooth out my tacky skirt and sat up straight. She smiles gently at me and folds her hands.
"Brittany, I have to say that you've been doing an amazing job these past four years." She compliments me.
"Thanks Ms. Tanner." I chuckle modestly.
Her smile soon fades. Her posture slouches subtly, but I notice. I suddenly feel nervous and I can feel the light atmosphere dropping increasingly. Gulping, I keep a straight face while looking back at Ms. Tanner. Her dainty fingers travel to her wrist and begin to play with her silver wristwatch.
"Is there a reason why I'm called in here?" I surprise myself by asking. By her face, I can tell she's impressed by the blunt question.
"Yes actually." She answers smoothly. Her face-hardens when she continues. "There's been budget cuts, Brittany."
My stomach forms a knot and I can feel something crawl up my throat. I force it back down and flicker a tiny smile. "Heh, you can't be serious, Ms. Tanner."
Ms. Tanner shakes her head regrettably. "Brittany, I've been doing the math and I've calculated that we can't afford to keep you, literally."
"B-But this place makes plenty of money!" I frantically defend. "Hundreds of people pay to eat here an-and that's enough for all of the employees!"
Her eyes look soft with remorse, but her face is still stiff. She lets out a deep sigh. "We pay for lighting and the meat, the fries, the veggies, the drinks, the cups, and the repairs that we gotta do. We just have to let you go." She bites her lip and I can tell her rigid composure is breaking. "We're not making enough."
"Ms. Tanner—" Tears well up in my eyes.
"Please, don't make this any harder as it is." She demands coldly. Her eyes go past me, looking straight at the door. "Thank you for your years of service."
She just sits there staring—no not staring but glaring at me to go. I promptly stand up and shoot her a narrow eyed look right back. I fight the tears and storm off. I ignore the other girls asking me why I'm trying and what's wrong. I pass by Janet, who I'm sort of close with and pull her aside. She looks worried, a different kind of expression that she has on instead of the usual blank look. I tell her what happened and her face twists with sorrow and anger. I hug her and she hugs back. I cherish the warmth of a remotely close friend and leave the diner.
The snow is starting up again when I step outside. I look at my old cell phone razor and see the time. It's barely 8:30. My thumb pushes a button and I find myself in my contacts. I look under the S's and press the green button.
"Emma?" I ask gently.
"Brittany!" Her voice perks up. "Would you like Will and I to pick Graham up?"
"Yeah." I chuckle in the receiver. I stare idly at the snow falling on the pavement. "It'd be wonderful if you guys can."
"We'd love too." Emma replies. I can even hear a smile over the line. "What time will you be coming back home?"
"Maybe till 6 am." I lie. I can't go home and lie in bed for the rest of the night. "Is that okay?"
"Yeah it is, honey." She answers kindly. "But that's a rather late time, Britt."
"I know. I need the money, Em."
"Well, alright. Will and I will go pick Graham at the daycare. Take care, Britt."
"Bye Em." I look down at my feet and move some slushed snow around. "Thanks again and tell Will I said hi and give Graham a kiss goodnight for me."
Emma hangs up and I sigh. I have to find another job right away, just a job to gives me enough to pay rent and maybe they could add a little extra if I work really hard on the first week before Graham's birthday so I can get him that hockey stick. I quickly walk away from the diner and wander around Michigan Ave.
I bite my lip and close my eyes when a gust of wind blows against me. Shivering, I wrap my scarf on tighter around my face. Sometimes I wish I bought those gloves that was on sale. I can feel my fingers turning blue in my pockets. I can't even job hunt properly because I have my head down while walking. I keep going until my feet hurt, gosh how long have I been moving around?
When I feel the wind calming down I look up to see where I am. My eyes narrow as I try to find familiar signs. My heartbeat rises when I realize that I'm lost. Shit, shit, shit. I try to retrace my steps but after some time I think I've been walking in circles. The buildings are dark, no one is outside not even a car. Tired from my excessive power walking I lean against a lamppost. I hastily pull out my phone so I can call Emma again, but a bright light flashes before me. Squinting, I look up from my phone and see a car. A Mercedes Benz that is.
It stops in front of me. I get a bit nervous, thinking that this is it. Am I going to die in a shooting or something? The window rolls down and I see a woman. Relaxing, I timidly approach her. I bend down to have eye level when I see a glint in her eye. I don't know what it is, but I'm curious and too scared to find out.
"Hey." I greet her, maybe I can ask her for a ride home. I look at her face and see that she has features that can describe her as Latina. Her thick, dark hair is down and wavy and her face seems flawless. Her lips are big and red and her eyes seem so dark and mysterious.
She looks at me carefully before nodding like she's impressed. Licking her lips, she talks. "How much?"
"How much?" She repeats with a little more force.
Suddenly it hits me. She thinks I'm a hooker. My eyes widen at this realization. Am I dressed like a hooker or do hookers these days dress with a little more clothes on? Do they even come out during snow? Seems too cold to dress up like a hooker during this season. The only thing stuck in my head is that do I really look like a hooker or a modest looking hooker?
"Well?!" She says impatiently.
I jump at her voice. I should say no and tell her that it's all a misunderstanding. I was about to open my mouth when I remembered something. I remember Janet once told me that hookers make a lot of money. I don't know why she shared that information with me, but when I decide to reply to the woman my heart beat gets louder.
"$46." I don't know what a hooker's regular price is, but I should start off low.
"To have you eat me out?" She asks. I watch her get lost in her thoughts before she comes back. "What about sex?"
"$135." I choke out nervously. I want to say a higher price, but I realize that I'm absolutely desperate for money that I just need whatever she can pay.
"Sounds like a good deal." She says mostly to herself. She nods her head over to the passenger seat. "Get in."
The door pops open and I immediately get in. My nerves haven't calmed down yet. I'm still stiff as a rock when I sit in the car. I glance at the woman and see her looking straight at the road, driving off to God knows where. I soon relax when I feel my seat warming up, are these things heated? It feels great! Then I get the idea of placing my freezing hands over the heat that's blasting out of the car vents.
"Must be cold out there, huh?" The woman observes me with a side-glance.
"It is." I pull my hands away from the heat and slide my arms out of my sleeves and cross my arms under my coat. Rubbing my arms I feel little goose bumps forming.
"Mhmm." She acknowledges me.
We drive pass the weird part of town and into a more familiar territory. I relax myself and sink back in the seat, staring at the buildings of shops and restaurants as we pass by them. The woman silently hums when she pulls into a parking garage for a hotel. She parks her car and gets out while I silently follow her. We walk in an elevator and continue our quiet communication.
We hit the top level of the hotel and step out when the elevator doors open. I look around the hallway and look at the expensive artwork hanging on the walls. The woman comes to a sudden halt in which I almost ran into her. She pulls out a card and slides it in the electronic lock. It turns green, signaling the woman to turn the doorknob to open it. We walk in and I freeze when I enter. It's a presidential suite.
"You coming?" The woman calls out from a different room. I didn't even know she kept on walking.
I shake my head and follow her humming. I end up in the presidential bedroom and see the woman taking off her heels. I notice that she's only a few inches shorter than me. Slowly she walks towards me her hips swaying and her eyes looking at every inch of my body. I shiver in anticipation when I feel her slender fingers running down my neck.
"You're a quiet one." She murmurs softly. She unbuttons my coat while I stand there. "A stiff one as well."
"F-First time on the job." I mutter to her with all honesty. My coat drops on the ground and I wait for her to remove something else.
"I can tell." She forms a smirk. "Words of advice, don't dress up like one of the ladies from the 80s."
"I'll try." I briefly smile at her.
She moves her hands behind me and tugs at the zipper near my neck. I breathe heavily and look down at her, getting a better look at her face. Her lips look plumper at a closer view and her make up is done nicely. I can also see a small scar on her left cheek, just a faint one. My eyes linger on her lips, the way her pink tongue constantly pokes out to moisten those lips seems so enduring. They suddenly curl up and I look at her eyes and see a tint of lust.
"This is your first time, huh?" She teases while she pulls down the zipper.
I gasp when I feel air hit my bareback. I look at her intently and see that she wants me to do the same.
"I told you so." I try to smile again.
I place my hands on her hips and tug her coat off like she did with mine. It hits the ground and I fumble with the black belt in the middle of her dark blue dress. Eventually it comes off along with her dress. She stands in her undergarments and the next thing I know I am too.
"Well come on stud." She motions me to the bed. "I'm paying you to sex me up. If you can give me four orgasms I'll even pay you double or triple. Depending on how awesome it is."
I gulp. "Right." I turn around for a second to find the light switch. When my hand rests on it, I turn back towards the Latina woman. This is for the money, I tell myself. If I do well, then I get more money, right? Money equals happiness and right now I need to afford happiness. I turn the lights off and walk over towards her. I get on the bed and gently push her back, hovering over her I can still see her eyes glowing in the dark.
"I'm Santana by the way."