FatLand: The Early Days – Part II

One Year Later

FatLand:  The Early Days

Part II

Angela made her way down Nevins Street, lists for produce in her hand.  As the CEO of Restaurantville, which was how her restaurant complex was now known -FatLand didn’t allow chains- she could easliy afford to send buyers out in the morning. But she loved walking in the cool early hours to select fresh produce to be cooked and round thick cheeses to be added to meals and desserts, as well as sweet succulent fruits to be presented in different forms and times throughout meals. She was so proud that FatLand now had its own Farmers’ Market, with suppliers coming in even from Colorado to display their products.

And no wonder, she thought, since their sales had fallen drastically since the stricter implementation of weight-based rationing on the Other Side.

But as she strolled down Nevins Street where it met Howell Road, she remembered again that Charla was no longer with them. One night she had said good night to her. The next morning they had found a note on her bed. Angela continued to hope and pray that she was still alive, perhaps even with Bill somewhere, somehow. Most of the time she managed to keep busy enough these days to keep herself from thinking about the void. It was just sometimes..

Brenton waved to her. She stopped in her tracks. “Well, this is a surprise,” she said. These days Brenton didn’t usually go anywhere by himself.  She knew of one death threat and according to Ronnie and Darren, there had been a few more.

“Out and about with the folks,” Brenton joked. She knew he was running for the newly-constituted Chair of the Board Position. He wanted and needed to be seen and heard. 

“I knew you weren’t just interested in mushrooms,” Angela joked back. “Looking good, though.”

“Thanks,” Brenton said, his entourage dressed in suits and looking a bit menacing, since they weren’t allowed to carry weapons.  “Shows me as a man of the people. Not afraid to buy my own cabbage and greens, you know.”

“As long as that’s all they see you as.”

“What does that mean?” Brenton said, looking at some baby carrots.

“Oh, that you micromanage, et cetera.”

“I didn’t think of that,” Brenton said.

“Don’t worry about it,” Angela said. “Just show them that you’ll love your job.  You preside so well as it is. It’s a natural talent.”

Brenton bowed.  “Thanks of course. Want to come with me on a few stops?”

“What?”

“You heard me.”

“Wow. Well – ” She thought of all the schedules  she would have to juggle to set aside even an hour. But to come with Brenton… it was what she had longed for, then given up on, only to have the 0pportunity tossed so casually into her lap.

“It would be interesting for you,” Brenton said. “See how I’m received.  And I would welcome your opinion on strategy.”

“Well,” Angela said, struggling with different parts of herself, “a couple of them. Then I’ll have to get back to planning.”

“Fantastic,” Brenton said. “I’ll meet you at Larry Fats in a couple of hours, then. We’ll have a bite first.”

“Larry Fats,” Angela repeated, thinking of all the times she had fantasized about bumping into Brenton there. “See you in a couple of hours, then.”

When Brenton left, she stood, looking at a few early celeriac roots, then started to walk toward the dairly section, wishing that Charla were still around so she could tell her and they could giggle about it together..

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