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You are a cliffhanger ending; I’m the one that doesn’t know anything

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Five more minutes.

Laura’s crush came in every day at 7:40 am, just before the morning rush, but never long enough for Laura to get the nerve to ask for her name or even her number. But! That was okay. Today she had a plan. And in ten minutes she was going to execute it, flawlessly, as she did all her plans.

Her summer job was, at its worst, stressful (it’s “character building” to be freaked out at by random people over their very specific - and disgusting - coffee preferences). At its best, well, she got to make new friends in her coworkers - she often worked shifts with LaFontaine, who she got along with really well. At its very best, she got to see her every day.

And there she was, at the very back of the unusually long line-up. Over six-feet of Amazonian beauty, hair like the sun, blue eyes that should be illegal, a smile that could stop traffic. No, Laura didn’t know her name, but she didn’t need to - she knew it was love. Well, in the least, she knew that she liked looking at her and she wanted to do so over dinner and a movie, maybe. Possibly.

So here was her plan: when LaFontaine would take her order, Laura would make her drink, quickly write her number on it, hand her the drink, be super cute and adorable (easy, of course), and yeah, the ball would be in Tall McBeautiful’s court. So to speak.

Laura busied herself with the next few drinks - a few of them were complicated, oh god, why can’t people enjoy a regular cup of coffee - then when she saw the object of her affection walk up, she quickly ducked down, grabbing her order from LaFontaine - oh, it was different this time around, she usually got a fancy latte. She quickly wrote her number on the side before whipping up her (strangely un-fancy) drink.

Unfortunately Laura wasn’t able to directly hand the coffee to her - someone else in line ordered four different drinks, all with very unique requests - so she called out the order, placed it on the side table, and went about her business.

God she hoped she’d call.

A few hours later she got her wish - a phone call from an unrecognized number.

“Hello?” Laura answered, trying to not sound eager (unfortunately, ‘eager’ was her voice’s default setting).

“Cupcake,” the voice began (uhhh, the voice sounded totally different from who she was expecting), “you should really be careful with writing your phone number on peoples drinks. It might get in the wrong hands.”

Oh no.

“Umm…who is this?”

“See, you don’t even know who I am? That’s a concern, sweetheart. You’re lucky I’m not some creep who has nefarious intentions. Well - not unless you’re into that.”

“Excuse me?” Okay, she maybe should’ve planned this better, because despite the fact that this person had the sexiest speaking voice she’d ever heard in her life, she didn’t exactly bank on giving her number to the wrong person.

“You’re the cute barista at the Good Earth, right? Tiny woman, huge smile, nice eyes?”

Laura blushed and then giggled, then blushed at the fact that she giggled. “Uh, yeah, I guess you could describe me that way…”

“I’m Carmilla. I haven’t actually spoken to you and I don’t even know if you’d recognize me if you saw me. I figured you didn’t mean to give me your number - but again, I’m not complaining. I think your name is Laura, according to your name tag?” she asked.

(Oh god, this person was charming and she was already swooning for this faceless person with the beautiful voice.)

“It is,” she admitted, as coyly as she could considering the circumstances.

“Well, Laura, I’d love to take you out some time, maybe go over some tips I have on safety - like maybe not giving away your number to total strangers?”

“Uh…”

“Unless you had your heart set on giving your number to someone else? There was a giant behind me in line, was pretty, if you were able to crane your neck up to look that high.”

Well. That was kind of rude.

“Look, Carmilla was it? I don’t even know who you are or what you look like…”

“Let’s change that then. When do you work next? I’ll come by at the end of your shift, we can talk. I’m sure you won’t want coffee, but we could go somewhere, grab a bite? My treat,” Carmilla asked, a little less confidently than before. It was kind of charming. Well, no, it wascompletely charming, and Laura said yes before her brain even caught up with her mouth.

“Uh, I mean,” Laura rolled her eyes, she didn’t even know if she’d be attracted to this woman and she was already tripping over herself, “I work tomorrow - I’m off at four.”

“Great!” Carmilla said, excitedly. She cleared her throat, then with a little more control said, “I’ll see you tomorrow, cutie,” before hanging up.

It was a long day. Laura was jittery the entire shift - LaFontaine noticed it. She filled them in on what happened - and after LaFontaine stopped laughing hysterically at her misfortune, they immediately knew who she was talking about.

“Oh, you talked to Carmilla? Laura, this is bad. Like, as in this is great, because she is beautiful, in like an intimidating-and-will-eat-you-alive-and-you’ll-probably-be-into-it kind of way. You’re screwed. And you’ll probably be screwed.”

Laura admonished them. “Don’t be so crass, LaFontaine, I’m sure it won’t be like that.”

“Well, I guess we’ll find out in less than an hour. How do you not even know who she is? She comes in every day. She’s actually kind of cool. Reads a lot.”

“Well I’m sorry I’m so focused on making excellent high quality coffee drinks for our patrons, LaF.”

“Right. Maybe you’ve just been too focused on Danny to notice that someone’s been crushing on you for weeks.”

“Who is Danny?”

“You’re hopeless, Laura.”

3:58 pm - Laura just checked the clock - and the front door opened, the chimes alerting her. Her back was to the door and she heard LaFontaine greet them.

“Hey, Carmilla.”

“Hey, LaF. Hello, Laura. It’s good to finally meet you.”

Laura turned around and held back a gasp.

Oh god. LaF was right. This was bad. Because it was going to be impossible to operate like a regular human being around this woman, this incredibly beautiful looking woman, who was currently smirking at her, oh god, she was looking right at her, how had she not notice her before?!

LaFontaine poked her in the ribs. “Laura, pro-tip - girls don’t like it when you stare. Also get the hell out of here, your shift is over.”

Laura quickly threw off her apron and walked around to the front doors where Carmilla stood. She let go of the breath she didn’t realize she was holding, then held out her hand.

And the second their hands touched and Carmilla’s smile grew, Laura knew she was a goner.

“Hey.”

“Hey.”