Shannon looked up at the clear blue sky and blinked. It looked the same as it always did. The air around her smelled the same as it always did. She shut her eyes and listened. Nothing out of the ordinary there, either. Yet, something was wrong.
She shifted her weight around and uncurled her legs from the chair she sat in. The clock on the patio wall read almost 8 a.m. The day had barely begun and already she felt a heavy hand pressing on her chest.
Monday. She would normally at work by now, beginning a pointless staff meeting where she sat, listened to everyone else's upcoming week, and took the occasional note of a task someone would toss her way like a scrap to a cowering dog. Being only part-time she felt disconnected from the goings on and distant from the other employees. Her boss alternated micro-managing with complete dismissal to the point where Shannon hated to see him walk into the office.
Unable to face another dead meeting, Shannon emailed in sick. Well, she reasoned, I am sick of that job. I just can't face it today. So, out went an email with her regrets and the instant that email left the outbox, the heavy hand began clutching at her chest walls.
She admitted to herself that she doesn't do much of anything when she is at work. The bare minimum and no more. I'm a terrible employee. I don't stay a minute passed quitting time. I sneak out early every chance I get. I read the paper or the internet news when no one is there. I only work when someone is watching me.
I'm going to be fired. Today was the last straw.
Shannon took a sip of coffee and thought about getting fired. It's the rejection that hurts, she told herself. But that really happened soon after I was hired. Hell, I can get another job. I've worked retail before and I can learn waitressing. I can collect unemployment for a while, too. I couldn't do that if I'd quit.
She stood up and walked inside and turned on her computer. I'll look for another job. There will be something out there for me. I can do anything. I can.
The horizon blinked.