This one’s been a long time in my document folder, waiting to be posted. Instead of Barth and “I”, this one is about Barth and “my cousin”, Alec.
Just a special edition for covid19
Alec stood apart from the twelve other candidates in the spacious but efficient lobby. So far, no one had been called in for the job interview. To his side, Bartholomew, aka Barth the Mew, aka his cousin’s nightmare, stood, one shoulder leaning against the wall as he picked his teeth with a small Swiss knife.
Alec quickly looked away, afraid Barth would catch him watching and feel obliged to engage in conversation. The only reason he’d agreed for Barth to drive (and not escort) him to the job interview, had been to take him away from the house and his cousin – Barth’s current obsession.
Thankfully, no one was paying them any attention.
A guy in the group gave a hearty laugh, and Alec shifted his focus back to them. He listened to each individual boast about their experience and degree, and slowly, Alec’s confidence deflated. He had hopes for the job, but he didn’t have any experience, he didn’t even have a degree because of the virus lockdown. He felt stuck in limbo, unable to move forward without his degree, unable to attain any experience without getting a job.
He should just leave and save himself the embarrassment the rejection would cause.
Alec hugged his one page CV to his chest, afraid anyone would see his pathetic resume, and hung his head low.
“What’s wrong?” Barth asked near his ear.
“Nothing,” Alec said and shifted away.
Barth, because apparently he was as clueless as Alec’s cousin claimed, leaned forward and closed the gap. “Why are you lookin’ so low?”
Alec shrugged. “We should leave,” he said. “I can’t compete with them.” He pointed his chin to the candidates.
“Don’ you have a resume just like them?” Barth asked, eyeing where Alec hugged his CV against his chest.
“My CV is pathetic,” Alec admitted. “Let’s go home.”
“CV? Ain’t that what covid is called on social media?” Barth asked with a confused frown.
“Curriculum Vitae. It’s the Latin name for a resume.”
“Ah.” Barth turned his frown to the group. “I can fix this,” he said and moved away before Alec could stop him.
With dread, Alec watched barth pause beside the tallest candidate and say something that caused the guy to glance back at Alec with alarm.
Alec’s face instantly heated.
Oh shit, he thought with a muffled cough, his cousin was right, Barth was a walking humiliation magnet.
By the time Barth had moved to the third guy, Alec was pressed against the wall, praying a higher dimension would open and swallow him whole. His cheeks were in flame, no doubt the color of ripe tomatoes. Alec continued coughing into his fist to cover his face, but all that accomplished was help his eyes to water and make him look like he was crying.
He could just picture himself standing there, face flushed red, eyes glassy with unshed tears, hunched in on himself. In other words, pathetic.
It was said that everyone could become a murder, given the right circumstance at the right time, but Alec didn’t feel it. Instead, he was resigned to the embarrassment. He lowered his head, fixed his eyes at a bland spot on the floor and allowed the moment to wash over him.
“Done,” Barth said an eternity later. Alec’s head jerked up, but before he could grab Barth and skedaddle out of there, the door at the far end opened and the interviewer stepped out.
Alec found his cousin in the living room, seated on the sofa with a steaming mug, watching the local news.
“So did you get the position?” she asked the moment Alec sat on the sofa beside her.
Alec grinned. His face was still a little flushed, but he didn’t care. “Sure. I’ll start in two weeks thanks to Barth.”
His cousin paused in the process of sipping from her mug. “Oh? How’d that happen?”
Alec snickered and dropped his pathetic CV on the table. “Barth went around telling the candidates he heard me mention how strong my CV was. I was the only one left by the time the interview began.” Alec waved his hand. “The company’s only concern was that I get tested for the Covid before I start in two weeks.”
*Note: I have no idea if I’m getting the format of the posts right. So if it’s crooked, or words appear out of nowhere, please ignore it the way the new editor is ignoring all my commands.