Time dragged its feet as the short night waned, a watery sunset rising over a crisp fall morning.
As the clock beeped 4:00 AM, the chicken sat at his desk groaned. Gyro Gearloose, the smartest person
he'd ever known, was stuck in a rut, and couldn't seem to find a way out of it. Gyro glanced out of
the window as the first rays of sunlight hit his small bedroom. He squinted, then tried to shut the curtains,
to no avail. He sat up, his disheveled hair looking more and more like the tangle of cords hanging out of
Gyro shambled into the kitchen, looking for some more of that sweet brown liquid that kept his
grades high and his mind dull enough to not care. He slammed a finger on the Keurig, which prompted him to
put a K-Cup inside. Reaching into the cabinet for another small packet of life, his hand hit cardboard, as
he slowly realized that he had run out. Another small complaint passed his lips as he peered into the small
wooden container. Rats. He had been hoping that maybe, just /maybe/ one had dipped out of the box and fell
behind it. He picked up the box and tossed it halfhazardly at the trash bin, where it made it about halfway
and then fell.
What could he do now? His Final on computer design wasn't due for another two days, but he wanted to finish
his design early, so he could work on more... personal issues at hand. He checked his wPhone [copyright Waddle Inc.]
and finally looked at the time. Jeez, was it only 4:30? It felt like he'd been awake much longer than that. As
Gyro stared down at his cellphone, a thought passed his mind. Maybe he could visit that cafe he'd been wanting
to go to for a while. He slipped on a jacket, threw his laptop and notes into a small bag, and locked the door
to the cramped apartment behind him.
* * * *
The morning air was crisp and cool as Gyro walked down the street, phone in hand, looking for the small shop
he had passed many times over, hoping that it would even be open this early. As he turned the corner, he saw
the faint luminescence of the sign hanging over the door. */Javabean Coffee/*. Huh. Interesting name for a shop
that looked to be only a few years old, yet the sign above looked much older, wiser than that. Like it had seen
something. Nevertheless, Gyro approached the door and grabbed the handle. He pulled, and...
A small curse formed on his tongue when he heard a jingle of keys and a small click. Looking up, Gyro recoiled
as his eyes laid on the cutest duck he'd ever seen, disregarding that stupid superhero he kept seeing pictures
of. They made eye contact, and he felt his face turning red. A small gasp escaped his lips as the door gave way,
and the warm air of the vestibule rushed to greet his face before he could return the favor. A small smile on the
duck's lips acted as if he knew Gyro would be coming, and that he was waiting for him. But that smile looked so
familiar, yet he couldn't place his feather on it...
'Oh! Sorry to startle you. I'm on the opening shift, so I thought I'd get things running a bit earlier.'
The duck ran into the store, flicking lights on as he passed, and Gyro admired how fast he could move while
also being so clumsy, glancing at the small pile of silverware that was now on the floor, kicked there by
a wayward swing of the arm by the Barista. Before Gyro could say anything, the duck was behind the counter,
holding a pen and a cup, the uniform he was wearing now covered by a stained and worn apron, with a nametag
pinned to it. /Fenton Crackshell-Cabrera/. Nice name, for such a nice duck. Gyro blushed again has he realized
he was just standing there while the duck was simply waiting for him. 'What can I get for ya?' Fenton asked.
Gyro shook his head, startled, and then replied with something akin to gibberish. Fenton looked confused, and
Gyro started again.
'Can I have something that'll keep me awake for another 3 hours while I work on my project? Nothing too big,
but nothing too small either. You should know what to do.'
Fenton nodded, and replied, 'Of course! And that will be for...?'
'Gearloose. Gyro Gearloose. That's spelled G-e-a-r...'
'No need! I know about you already. You're the prodigy from the college, right? I heard all about you.
Gyro had to hold back a smile as he felt his heart skip a beat. Someone... had complimented him? And
for what? Being able to draw up schematics? He heard himself stammer, then cleared his throat.
'Yes, well, I'm nothing in comparison to some of the people there. They can write up ideas quicker
than a blink. But whatever. Do you have an outlet and a Wifi password?'
Fenton nodded, then ran into the back while his coffee sat under the machine, slowly filling up. He ran
back in with a slip of paper, and pointed to the booth near the window. 'There's an outlet over there, and this...'
he quickly scribbled some words onto the paper, 'is the password. Your coffee will be here shortly.'
Gyro sat down, the booth giving way a bit, causing him to bump his knee on the underside of the table. As he
quietly cursed under his breath, he pulled out his laptop and set up a workspace, making himself as comfortable
as he could be. A quick glance at the clock told him that he had 2 and a half hours before his 8:00 AM class, so
he'd have to work quickly. As Gyro oriented himself in the small bit of chaos he had created for himself, a pair of
feet appeared in front of him, and the smell of roasted beans wafted across his nose. Looking up, he saw Fenton, holding
a cup of coffee and a biscuit.
'I thought you might want something to eat, seeing how early it is. Here's your coffee, a vanilla bean Latte with soy
milk and whipped cream, along with an added dash of vanilla.'
Fenton set the cup down next to gyro, in a small open space next to his notes. The coffee looked amazing, with swirled
whipped cream on top, adorned with chocolate curls and caramel syrup. Gyro picked up the drink and took a sip. It tasted
just as good as it looked, the flavour of the coffee swirling around with the pungent taste of vanilla, creating a dance of
bitterness in his mouth. He felt his bones warm right up, as he nearly drained the drink, ignoring the piping hot temperature
of the liquid itself. As he set the cup down, he licked his lips, grabbing the last remaining morsels of whipped cream hanging
to his beak.
Fenton glanced over at his computer, and looked at the notes that Gyro had scattered across the table. 'You know, a good way
to boost strength to the neural circuits would be to add something for it to push it through, like a mental block, so it doesn't
get flooded over.'
Gyro blinked, than looked up at Fenton, and back to his notes. Why didn't he think about that before? What better way to keep
the mental system from overflowing than to simply create a narrower passage? Why didn't /he/ think of that?? He quickly wrote down
the idea on a sticky note, then put it onto his lid. As he was writing, he noticed Fenton had disappeared, but a small piece of paper
had been placed on the side of his coffee cup. On it was a number, a name, and a winky face. Gyro, turning redder and redder, stole
a final glance at the clock. Blathering blatherskite!! He had to go, or he would miss the train to his university! As he shoved all his
things into his backpack, he looked around for the friendly smile of the barista that gave him the note, but to no avail. He walked out
of the coffee shop, unaware of the eyes following him out from behind the employee door.