If there's anything that Miles Wesley enjoys, it's pissing people off. Sure, he may not live past the age of forty if people want to kill him, but it's yolo. Besides, it's not like he's a total douche bag—some people just make him annoyed. You know, like those giggly people who have no life and talk loudly about their day as if anyone cares. He's doing them a favour, too—not everything is sunshine and rainbows. There's still naïve people his age who think life is amazing and everything will go their way.
He's the only child, but having parents who don't care about him, he grows into the habit of not needing anyone else. He's learned at age five that Santa Clause isn't real. Age seven how to pretend that there isn't monsters under his bed. It takes him ten years to realise that his family isn't like any other kids in his class. They're supposed to love him.
Whenever he arrives home, he goes directly to his room, not bothering to alert his presence. Between feeling useless and unwanted, it makes him isolate from those that try to talk to him. There's that type of protective shield he puts up—being hurt by others is pointless. Mainly this can be a signal for Fuck you to his parents. He's not going to be that type of guy anymore; the one who cries just because his parents don't show any affection. It's not like he wants it anymore, besides for that secret feeling of just acknowledging he's there.
Miles is seventeen—soon he'll be graduating, and living on his own. Although he doesn't know what career he'll pursue in (his grades are just above passing), he'll figure that all out when the time comes. Independence is already natural to him.
Walking down the streets of Vancouver, he appreciates how it's so easy to blend in. Nobody will give a second glance, too preoccupied with their destinations and plans.
Miles heads to a grocery store, planning to buy pop tarts and Capri sun drinks. He basically lives off the stuff—probably not that nutritious, but whatever.
After grabbing the items, throwing in a pack of gum for the heck of it, he stands in line to pay. It's a long ass line, making him impatient.
The woman in front of him has a lot of items on the conveyor belt, like she's feeding the army.
Miles checks out the other lines, which are longer. His eyes flicker to the cashier, who's making polite conversation with the customer. Oh, wait, maybe the cashier is genuinely interested in a random person's life.
The lady is laughing, while Cashier Boy scans the items one by one. He looks like one of those models—tanned skin, dark hair, and friendly/happy-go-lucky smile. There's a name tag which says Chance, but that must be fake. Like, the dude is good-looking and has a nice name. People can't be that lucky.
Miles taps his foot. When the woman finally pays, "Chance" smiles at him.
"Do you have a Points card?"
"Don't shop here that much." Miles rolls his eyes. "I'm kind of in a hurry, can you just skip the chat?"
"Uhm, yeah." Chance's smile disappears. "Thirteen twenty-five."
Miles almost considers in handing over a pile of change, just for the hilariousness of it. However, he did say he was in a rush, so he gives a twenty dollar bill instead.
"Enjoy your day." Chance hands back the change. When their fingers make contact, Miles feels his pulse beat faster.
For a moment, something electrifying runs down his skin, almost as if someone zaps him. Not, like, painful or anything. Miles can't quite describe it, but he grabs his groceries and walks back home.
Chance Perez checks his watch, noting his shift is nearly over. He's lucky he doesn't take the late night shifts anymore. Five hours of sleep at the very most is rare for him.
Being nineteen, he has to manage his schedule carefully. Attending university courses, and heading to jobs that can be early in the morning or late at night, he struggles with sleep and paying bills. On top of that, he has to be financially stable for his daughter. All he wants is his daughter grow up happy and successful. Any parents wants that for their child, right?
With the help of his ex, Emma, they both have 50% custody of Brooklyn. Emma's mother helps, too, when both are gone to school.
After a long day, going home to his daughter makes Chance happy. It reminds him how lucky he is.
After the rude customer left—well, maybe "rude" isn't the correct term; could have been an off day—it puts Chance at a dimmer mood. The customer looked near his age, maybe sixteen years. With messy curly brown hair and face that looked so expressionless, Chance has drawn to the conclusion that the teenager is going through rough times.
Chance checks the time once more. Yep, it's over. He empties the cash register, giving the money to his boss before heading home.