"Suspected" - A Short Story

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"Suspected"

It was 8:45pm, a salesgirl, Wren Rosie Raynard, was bored at her work at the Saffron Fortune store in the Blandine Orpheus mall, which is the local mall in her town. “I am soo bored. There are no customers,” she said. Wren was so bored, she decided she was going to stock the makeup, which she loves to do and rather stock than put out or fold more clothes.

Vivian Mabelle Lecleric, another salesgirl and Wren’s friend, said, “Wren, you look like you’re up to no good. What are you about to do?”

Wren replied, “I’m not up to something. Why do you think that?”

Vivian answered, “I know you, and you’re up to something. I don’t know what but you have that ‘I’m up to something’ look in your eyes. I’ll find out what it is sooner or later.”

Wren said, “Oh really? I do? But, Viv, there’s nothing for you to find out because I’m not up to something. I’m just going to stock the makeup. That’s all.”

Vivian replied, “Yeah, right, sure that’s all, Wren.”

Just then, Meaghan Kat Holmes, their manager walked by and noticed the two salesgirls talking. She said, “Girls, stop chatting and get back to work.”

While Wren was stocking the glitzy eye shadow, toned blush, and bold lip gloss, at 9:30pm, Miss Darla Bebinn walked through the door of the store. Miss Darla Bebinn, a regular customer, who comes in twice a week, was the nicest person they have ever met.

Vivian greeted her, “Hello Miss Bebinn. How are you today?”

“Hello, Vivian, I am doing very well. How are you?” Darla Bebinn answered.

“Pretty good. Although, I think Wren’s up to something, even though she’s stocking the makeup right now,” said Vivian.

Miss Bebinn replied, “Ah. Actually, I think I’m going to go take a look over there at the makeup.”

A few minutes later, Miss Bebinn had joined Wren at the makeup counter where Wren was stocking behind the counter. “Hello, Wren. I heard you were up to something over here,” said Miss Bebinn, as she watched Wren stock the hot pink lipsticks.

Wren replied, “Oh. Did you hear it from Viv? I’m not ‘up to something’, just stocking the makeup.”

All of a sudden, at 9:53pm, Miss Bebinn said, “Oh, look at the time. I better be going. You’re probably going to be closing very soon. Bye girls. See you tomorrow.”

In unison, both girls replied, “Goodbye.”

As Wren was on her way out from just getting off work at 10:30pm, Meaghan came out of the back room and said, “Wren, I need you to be here tomorrow at 4pm…and on time would be lovely. So, don’t be late again. I don’t like to repeat myself, so, please don’t be 45 minutes late like you were today.”

Wren answered, “Okay, Meaghan. I won’t be late ever again, I promise. I really do. I mean it. I will get here on time tomorrow.”

“Good. I hope so, because I’m really going to trust you this time,” said the manager, Meaghan.

The next day, Wren arrived at work 15 minutes early, just like she had promised Meaghan the night before. A minute later, Vivian arrived and saw Wren already there. “You’re actually early for once Wren. That’s good,” Vivian commented, “and nice clothes. I’m sure Meaghan would love the jeans.”

Wren hurried over to a mirror by the dressing rooms and looked. And sure enough, Wren was wearing jeans. “Great, just great. The one day I’m actually early for work, I’m not dressed right,” she said.

Vivian advised Wren, “If I were you, I’d leave right now before Meaghan comes out from the back room and sees you.”

As Wren was trying to slip out before her manager came out, she only made it to the door, when it was too late. The manager had just come out of the back room and noticed her. “Wren, come here, please,” said Meaghan.

Wren answered, “Yes.” She turned around slowly and walked up to her manager.

Meaghan said, “It’s wonderful that you’re early and all. But, it’s also nice of you to dress up.”

“Um, yeah, about that…um…I sort of messed up and didn’t realize that I was wearing jeans. I’m so sorry,” replied Wren.

“Wren, continue walking out the door, go home, get changed, and come back dressed for work quickly . And yes, I am sending you home to get changed, so go,” said Meaghan.

Wren, then, quickly walked back to the door, and went home to change. Meaghan went back to the back room to finish the paperwork in her office she began before pausing to check the front of the store.

Immediately after the discussion, Vivian started to fix the messy clothes, that were put back on the clothes racks.

Not too long after, at 4:25pm, their regular customer, Miss Bebinn walked through the store’s front door. “Hello, Miss Bebinn. How are you?” greeted Vivian.

Miss Bebinn replied, “Hello, Vivian. I am very well…Oh, where’s Wren?”

“She was sent home to change. She wasn’t quite dressed correctly for work,” answered Vivian, as she continued to straighten out the clothes.

Miss Bebinn walked to the makeup counter and studied the eye shadow in the glass. She noticed that one of the doors to the glass case wasn’t completely closed shut. Miss Bebinn looked towards the back to check to see if the manager was coming out of the back room. No one emerged from the back.

Then, she turned and looked in the direction of where Vivian was still tidying and folding the clothes. She looked up from the clothes and noticed Miss Bebinn was looking in the glass of the makeup counter. “Do you know what you would like? Do you need any help?” She asked Miss Bebinn.

“I’m still looking, Vivian. But thanks. I’ll let you know if I need help,” Miss Bebinn answered.

“Okay. Well, let me know when,” Vivian replied. She continued fixing the clothes. Minutes later, she was too lost cleaning up that she wasn’t too in tune with what was going on around her and too trusting of Miss Bebinn.

Miss Bebinn quietly stepped behind the counter, and carefully slid the door just a little bit. She reached in the glass and grabbed as many as she can in one hand. Miss Bebinn then quietly and quickly shoved a bunch of eye shadows in her purse, and slid the door back to the way it was before.

She had walked around the makeup counter, and looked up from the glass from another area of the makeup, when Vivian finally looked up from fixing and stocking the clothes.

At 5:10pm, Miss Bebinn looked at her watched and said, “Well, I better be going. I have to go meet someone out to dinner. Tell Wren I said ‘hi.’”

“All right, I will. Did you need anything from the makeup?” said Vivian.

Miss Bebinn said as she was walking out the door, “I was trying to find a specific color but I don’t think you have it in yet. I’ll try again another day. It’s not a big deal.”

“Oh okay. Goodbye then,” said Vivian.

As Miss Bebinn passed through the door, the alarm went off.

Vivian rushed over and saw Miss Bebinn in the doorway. “Could you just come back in for a minute to make sure it’s not faulty? I know you didn’t get anything today. It’s just procedure,” she said.

“Sure, sure,” Miss Bebinn replied. She had the eye shadow so well hidden in her purse that she knew they wouldn’t find it.

Meaghan emerged from the back room and asked, “What’s going on here?”

Vivian relayed the situation of the alarm going off and their best regular customer was in the doorway. Meaghan asked her, “Would you mind me having a quick look in your purse, just to make sure? I apologize, it’s procedure.” Miss Bebinn handed Meaghan her purse and she looked around inside but did not see anything that would have been not paid for. She did not feel or see the eye shadow that was hidden in a secret compartment. “Thanks Miss. You’re all good. You may leave. …Viv remind me to have the alarms checked later.” The manager headed for the back room again to finish her task.

Miss Bebinn then, left the store with her hidden goods that the salespeople did not find at all.

A few minutes later, Wren rushed in through the door of the store. “Omg, I know it shouldn’t have taken me so long. I’m so sorry. I got in a little car accident on the way back here,” said Wren.

Vivian asked, “Really?”

“Yeah, I was hit but my car isn’t totaled which is a good thing,” Wren said as she went behind the makeup counter to get everything set by the register and on the top of the counter.

A couple minutes later, Meaghan came out from the office in the back room. “Wren, good, you’re back and you’re dressed for work,” said Meaghan.

Wren replied, “Yeah.”

Meaghan had just glanced down at the makeup counter and noticed the little doors weren’t closed. Meaghan pointed to the door as she asked, “Wren, did you just open that door down there?”

Wren looked down behind the counter. “No, I didn’t. I didn’t get to set up the counters yet,” answered Wren.

“Hmm…and there seems to be some eye shadow missing. Are you sure you didn’t open it? Because you’re one of the few salesgirls that has the key and the only one here at the moment,” said Meaghan.

Wren replied, “I’m positive I didn’t open it. I believe it was like that when I got here, and I didn’t touch it when I got here earlier. What? You think I took eye shadow. Oh, just because I always look like I’m up to something, doesn’t mean I’m up to something. I didn’t steal any eye shadow and I wouldn’t steal. And plus I just got here a few minutes ago because I had gotten in a car accident on the way back here.”

“Well, that’s what it looks like because only you have access to the doors of the counters right now,” said Meaghan. Meaghan then looked at Vivian.

Vivian said, “Don’t look at me; I was stocking and folding clothes. I didn’t go near the makeup counter. And the only other person that was here in this area was Miss Bebinn, and she wouldn’t steal. She’s too nice and a good person.”

“Well, I’m just going to be watching you, Wren,” said Meaghan.

Hours and hours passed by until it was eventually 9:55pm. The rest of the day seemed like it went on forever for Wren. Especially since she was extra careful of what she was doing because her manager already thinks she stole eye shadow makeup when she didn’t steal at all.

Wren clocked out at 10:15pm, when Meaghan came out from the office. Wren said, “Well, that’s the end of my shift. Goodnight Vivian. I’m going now.”

“Night,” replied Vivian.

After Wren walked out the door, Vivian went over to Meaghan. “Meaghan, um, I have to talk to you. I thought about everything that happened and Wren wasn’t near that area before you came out when she came back. And I also realized that Miss Bebinn kind of did leave in a rush after she had looked at the makeup a little, and I think her purse might have looked a little bit heavier or bulging a little more than when she had walked in,” said Vivian.

“I didn’t find anything, Vivian. I checked,” said Meaghan.

After Vivian left, Meaghan went back into the office and looked at the tape from the camera. Sure enough, she found Wren to be innocent and Miss Bebinn had taken the makeup.

© 2012 Alyssa Scheidemann

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Gary Davis profile image

Gary Davis 4 years ago

So what happened next? Did Meaghan call the cops, show them the tape and have Ms. Bebbin arrested for shoplifting?

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