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Stuck With You

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Poe Dameron was a 26-year-old bookstore owner in Houston, Texas. He’d inherited the building from a great aunt at 20, and he fell in love as soon as he stepped inside. Now, 6 years later and business was going fantastically well. He had a good group of customers to come in everyday, and he even had a few regulars that would stop by.

The book store had a food counter where he would sell snack foods and drinks. There was a play area for children and an area where you could study. The store had an Arts & Crafts section, where they taught lessons, and there was the option to get book subscriptions.

The store was a hangout spot for college students, parents, and everyone in between. It was a safe space for all who came, and Poe loved that people saw it that way. The name of the bookstore was Poe’s Place.

Poe had three workers. There was Ava, the 20-year-old college student who only works on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Snap Wexley, who is 26 and worked part-time while teaching at a community college. Last, it was Jessika Pava; she was also 26, and she was his first hire. They were like siblings.

They were all a small family, and Poe wouldn’t change them for anything in the world. Even if they drove him crazy sometimes.

“Morning boss,” Ava says, coming in with a wide smile.

“Morning Ava,” Poe smiles back.

“What are you doing here?” she says, taking the chairs from off the tables. “I thought you weren’t coming in today.”

“I’m just here to look at the books,” he replies, lifting the heavy notebook.

Today was Saturday, and he had to do the weekly reports. He meant to do them the night before but was too tired and forgot.

“All right,” Ava says, and flips the sign from closed to open.

She comes around the counter and bumps her hip against Poe’s. Poe seen her as his little sister, and he thought Ava was hilarious.
Ava had convinced everyone to let her open the shop up herself, and they finally agreed. She’d done a great job and so they let her do it more often.

“I’ll be in the office if you need me,” He tells her, as he walks to the back.

He planned on not being there long since it was his day off. He wanted to get some painting done, so he could hang it up around the store. It was a hobby of his and he enjoyed it very much.

“Well, if you did this last night,” he says to himself, as he does the work.

“Talking to yourself again I see,” a voice from in front of him says. He looks up and grins when his eyes meet Jessika’s.

“Good morning, Jess,” he says.

“Good morning flyboy,” she says, leaning against the door frame. “Are we still closing up shop early?”

“Yes,” he replies, “at 1:15 and remember that we’re not opening again until Wednesday morning.”

Poe was getting new furniture, and he had a seminar to attend and had given his employees a few days off. They weren’t complaining though, so Poe wouldn’t stress about it.

“You look tired Poe,” Jess comments, frowning at him.

“I didn’t sleep that well last night,” he admits. “I’m fine though Jess.”

She stares at him for a moment then nods once. “Okay, but after you’re finished here, please go get some rest.”

“I will,” he promises. Jess smiles at him again, then excuses herself to go get started with work.

He sighs as he looks back down at his work. There isn’t that much to do, but he’s tired of looking at it. Picking up his pen, Poe records the data so he could head home. Once he’s finished with filing out the paperwork, he heads to the front of the store. There are a couple of people in today and he smiles at them when they look over to him.

“I’m heading out now,” he tells Ava and Jess.

“See you Poe,” Ava smiles and waves.

“Get some rest flyboy,” Jess gives him a stern look, and he rolls his eyes, fondly. She was very protective of him and everyone else that worked in the store. It was sweet, but it could also be too much at times.

He waves and leaves out of his store. He only stays down the street from the bookstore, so he walks sometimes.

When he arrives home, his cat, bb8, runs in the living room to meet him. He’s an orange and white Persian cat that he found 10 months ago. He was a baby when Poe found him, and he fell in love with him.

“Bb8 my buddy,” he says, picking bb8 up and holding him close. He purrs and rubs his face on Poe’s chest and Poe smiles softly. Poe sits him down and walks through his house.
He lived in a two-bedroom house, and he had a den, so he used his den for his paintings. The light would hit just right there, and he loved it.

Poe makes sure his door was locked, then he moves to the den. He was painting a picture of a forest, so he could hang it in the store. The customers responded well to the paintings, and some even tried to buy them.

He turns on his music and was about to paint when bb8 meows loudly from the doorway. He looks over to see him looking at him expectantly. “You must want food?” he smiles and gets up to go to the kitchen. He fills his bowl up with food and laughs when bb8 digs in. “You eat like I don’t feed you.”

He stares at bb8 before deciding to go back to the den. When he gets back to his den, he lets the music relax him, then he fades into his art world.