Unsettling Fast Food Conversation

You roll through your favorite fast-food drive-thru, order your usual and wait for the cashier to repeat it back to you. Only, he doesn’t repeat it. Instead, through the speaker, you hear a very unsettling conversation.

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One thought on “Unsettling Fast Food Conversation

  1. kathleenmagner

    After fingering through the cash in his wallet, Roy slouched behind the steering wheel. “Nothing else for me.”

    He glanced at Wendy in the passenger seat. She swept a finger across her tablet’s screen and scowled as brightened pixels illuminated her electronic demise. Sighing, she thumped the tablet onto her lap and glared at the reconstituting images.

    “Did you want anything, Wendy?”

    “To pass this level.”

    “Anything to eat?”

    She squinted through his window at the menu and boxed speaker. “Do you know what they put in that stuff?”

    “I know they can probably hear you.”

    Shrugging, Wendy returned to her tablet.

    “That’s it,” said Roy into the speaker.

    A thump, tinny shriek, and then static replied before the drive-through attendant murmured through the grated opening. “What do you want me to do with it?”

    Roy frowned. “Tell me how much it comes to?”

    “Just stick it in the bag,” said an icy-toned woman.

    “What?” Roy’s question rode overtop the attendant’s matching query.

    “We’ve got to get rid of it before Hunter gets back,” said the woman, “and you know he’ll find it in the trash.”

    The speaker crackled like the pitch of the attendant’s voice. “But they’ll find it in the bag.”

    “With enough napkins they won’t even notice.”

    Paper rustled amid the squeak of sneakers and the whack of an active microphone against a chin or cheek.

    “I don’t know about this,” said the attendant.

    “You,” said the woman, “don’t know anything.” A hard slap sounded, followed by a pained grunt. “Do as you’re told and we’ll get through this without either of us getting fired.”

    “All right,” said the attendant, “take it easy.”

    “I could if you’d listen.” Another crinkling of paper twined with the woman’s disdain. “Give them this and get them out of here.”

    Roy gaped at the speaker as the attendant’s voice warbled through.

    “Go ahead to the next window, please.”

    A click seemed to douse the microphone. Roy held his breath until certain the conversation would not restart before tilting his head toward Wendy, his eyes still locked on the speaker.

    “Did you hear that?”

    “Hum?” A blurred sequence of taps filled the car. “Hear what?”

    “The two of them inside.”

    “I’m sure they’ll tell you how much it’ll be when you pull up.”

    Roy ran his hands along the steering wheel. “I bet they’ll do something.”

    Putting the car into first gear, he eyed the lane abutting the back of the brick-walled restaurant, wary of where it might now lead. The truck behind them honked and, with his fingers gripping tight, Roy rolled forward.

    One ragged maple monitored their rounding of the curve, the turn revealing the waiting pickup window. A sickly yellow glow oozed between the glass panes and through the opened frame, painting the asphalt, and making the dropped ketchup packets and squashed french fries glisten. More squelched under his tires as Roy Inched up to the sill.

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