“Excuse me, sir. Can you help me find my mom?”
I heard this tiny voice and my first instinct was to ignore it. Maybe he was talking to someone else. I tried to go back to eating my bagel and tried my best not to look over my newspaper, but the kid was persistent. He reached over and tapped my shoulder. There was no way I could ignore him now, he’d touched me and made his presence known. Out of all the people sitting here, he’d chosen me to come to his rescue, and I’m probably the only person who doesn’t instantly flash pictures of my family without even being asked.
I put my newspaper down and forced a smile, the smile that comes along with gleaming eyes that are mostly always used for children.
I said “Interesting place for a kid to be lost. Is it Bring Your Child to Work Day?”
He pulled out the seat across from me and sat down. Before he answered, he looked around the room taking in every face, every move being made. “What do you do here?”
I was confused. I don’t have much patience, which is why I don’t do well with kids, so I could already feel my temper flaring. I was given this task and I wanted to get it over with. I can’t lie, he’s a pretty cute kid, but I didn’t want to spend my lunch break playing 21 questions. “Uh, I’m an engineer.”
“What does an engineer do?”
“Well, engineers don’t help kids find their parents, but this one will. So, when did you see her last?”
He stared at me for a moment before saying, “She said she was here for a job interview and told me to wait in the waiting room. That was two hours ago.”
For a brief moment, I had the thought that this kid had just been abandoned, and then I kind of laughed. If he was getting abandoned, this would make a great story one day. Normally kids get left in front of hospitals or orphanages. Not that I’d know personally, I’ve just seen it in films. Then, I realized that she was interviewing for the chemical development department. She was going to be in there for another hour.
“Alright, dude. Your mom is still in her interview. How about I buy you something to eat and you go back to where she told you to wait and then uh…yeah, that’s it. Are you hungry?”
He scrunched up his eyebrows and shook his head. “The lady at the front told me I couldn’t stay there anymore.”
I folded my newspaper and sat back in my seat. I furrowed my eyebrows, closed my eyes and tried to think of which girl could’ve been up there. Going through the schedule in my head, it finally clicked. The “lady” he was referring to was good-in-bed Leila. Most of the girls on my roster are hot, but they just lay there like idiots. So, what I do is add in an average chick with low self esteem so she feels that she has to compensate for her physical inadequacy, and then comes the best sex or blow job
of my life. Maybe both if I’m lucky. Leila, though, that girl is a fucking sin. She’s the whole package, but she’s a bitch so I’m not surprised she kicked the kid out.
I could’ve came up with ten different solutions, but I could tell he would’ve fired back a response as to why he should tag along with me. I glanced at my watch, and let out a sigh of annoyance. I had no choice but to take him back to my office. I packed up my things and we proceeded to make our way to the elevators. On our way there, various women in the building, some I’ve slept with and some I haven’t, stared at me with come-fuck-me eyes and I knew it was only because of the kid. Women who are impressed or turned on by men with children have daddy issues. That’s the only logical explanation. I shook off the attention and barreled him inside the elevator. I even let him press the button. I know, I’m a good guy.
At that moment, I realized that he never told me his name, nor did he ask for mine. I like the direction he’s heading in though; loose and detached. Names never really matter.
“What’s your name, kid?”
“Skylar.” He looked up at me surely anticipating the joke that would follow. His mother gave him a girl’s name. I’m almost certain he isn’t the popular kid on the block.
“That’s a girl’s name.”
He scoffed. “It’s unisex.”
I had to laugh at that. Right then, Marcie from the eighth floor hopped on the elevator, and at the sight of Skylar, her eyes lit up like a virgin in a strip club.
“Oh my stars, what a babe! Duuuuuncannn, is this your son? Why didn’t you ever tell us you had such a darling son?” She was practically yelling. I’m not sure who I hate more; Marcie or people like Marcie.
I rolled my eyes discreetly and told her he wasn’t my kid. She cocked her head to the side and said, “Hmm, that’s odd. He looks just like you.” Skylar and I instantly turned to face each other, we furrowed our brows and at the same time, and said, “No.”
Marcie awkwardly laughed and continued to ask Skylar stupid questions. I don’t know why people treat kids like babies, the kid had to be at least 10. He’s practically a grown man by now. Before I could kill either myself or Marcie, the elevator dinged and we were finally on my floor. I apologized to Marcie for having to cut our little chat short, grabbed Skylar and whizzed past all the annoying secretaries in hopes that I wouldn’t be asked anymore questions about this kid. When we got inside my office, he stood in the doorway and stared wide-eyed at all of my things.
“So, I’m guessing you like airplanes?”
“I want to be a pilot. This is so cool!”
For the first time since he ruined my day, I smiled at him. And it was real.