Shantih Journal 2.1 - Page 38

“That’s also bad. Please sign the bottom,” she says handing him a bit of receipt paper. In the over-the-counter remedy section, there’s a woman with slightly longer short red hair, freckles, a polo shirt, and a nametag with the words “Trainee: Sela” printed on the face, but David knows this is Natasha. She is restocking shelves with Theraflu. She doesn’t seem to know how to make it all fit. Apparently taking the overstock into the back of the store is not an option. David thinks about finishing the Fuck It List with Princess Mononoke. He thinks about having her call him “Firefox.” She seems different, but the same. She’s like a computer, reformatted back to factory settings. David’s afraid to bother her. He coughs. “You should cough into your elbow,” she says, “not your hands or you’ll infect everything you touch.” She tries to restack the Theraflu as if to magically conjure more space on the shelf. “Although if you’re already sick, might as well watch the rest of the world burn.” David follows his flow chart to get expectorants, and ibuprofen. Her shelves completely restocked except for the one box of Theraflu, Natasha bites her lip. She looks around. David understands this is a small crisis for her. Natasha tells David, “Instead of all that, try some Theraflu. It’ll help.” “What is it?” David asked. “Water, heat, and mystery powder. Probably cancer. You have to provide your own hot water though.” She hands it to him, careful that their fingers don’t touch. David approaches her, almost tapping her on the shoulder, “Wait.” He quickly came up with an excuse to say words at her and actually succeeded, “Do you know if this will interact with my medications?” “You’ll have to ask the pharmacist. My job is just glorified retail sales, and I couldn’t tell you anything that’s not written on the box, but you’re probably fine.” Natasha is dead here. Somehow they killed her. Her smile is fake and her costume is pathetic. Still, it might not be too late to rescue her. 38 “I can take you away from this,” David offers, “I make a stupid