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Leigh had owned his little bookshop which was tucked in the corner of the city center for about a year now and yet he still couldn't believe it every time he showed up here and knew it was his. The therian had been balancing his life pretty well since then, he was a scholar first and a businessman second so there was often times when he needed to close the shop because he was working to a tight deadline for one of his papers and couldn't be worrying about customers and their orders at the same time. Though in the past few weeks was the first time he had really felt the strain of the two roles of his life. Now the shop was making a profit had decided then it was time to take on someone new, not just someone to cover when he was too wrapped up in his other work but also someone to help organize the place and make it more appealing to customers.
He had done interviews for a while which was a strange experience for him considering he was very shy and reserved, even when it came to work related things but from the moment that Willow had walked into the shop she had put him at ease, there was something about her bright and sweet persona that just seemed to click with him and despite the fact that she didn't have the exact experience he was asking for. He'd hired her on the spot just because he saw the two of them getting along and she had some really good ideas about how to improve the store and generally she was just a bright person to be around. Sometimes it literally looked like she was glowing though he didn't comment on that.
It had only taken a few shifts for her to start suggesting all different things they could do to change the place around at first Leigh had grumbled about how he liked the layout and everything was in the place where he knew what it was but then Willow had gotten one look at the storeroom and it had been game over. He'd promised they'd get around to a rework and the date of the rework had finally come around, despite him being tempted to push it back yet again. Leigh had dressed casually knowing they'd be going through the storeroom and possibly working in places where the books had gotten a little dusty so he didn't want to wear anything he'd ruin.
The shop was only about a 10-minute walk from his home so he made himself a tea in a cup before heading out onto the streets of Evermore. Being a Saturday morning it was busy in the city center and he had to weave his way through the flow of people coming the other way until he finally made it to the little shop. He loved this property, it had an olden rustic look to it and it was tucked away nicely on the corner of the street which meant they didn't see as much of the traffic as the shops directly on the main road. He unlocked the door and headed inside letting out a long breath as he readied himself for a day of tidying.
Leigh hopped up onto the countertop and continued to sip his tea as he waited for Willow to arrive because if there was going to be any hope of the shop looking any better than it did right now by the end of the day he was going to need her organization skills and really he was hoping
Time was always a healing process for all different things and ways. Way to cope and heal. Letting your mind heal it was way that Willow used. Way to push away her demons of her past coming back to haunt her. For the painful years and all that happened not to take hold on her. To let her be back to the person that she once was before everything bad that had happened. Not letting her demons and nightmares win. Willow knew that she would never properly be the same again. It was something all of the other celestials have accepted. Yet they all knew that they’d have to take a step forwards to survive not to let others think they’ve one. Some Celestials had chosen to flee leaving them behind whilst some choose to stay. To leave in the same city of their enemy. Standing their guard. Showing that they weren’t afraid of them. Willow was one of the person who decided to stay. Thinking it was the better way seeing that last time she ran how they ended up being in the horrible situation. To stay and fight instead. Not taking the cowards way out unlike her brother and others. Elias her brother had left soon after the other celestials moved to the city. He’d begged her to go with him but Willow was adamant that she wanted to stay. Reminding him that they’ll always be family no matter where they are in the world. Able to connect to each other with the click of the button, technology still amazed her and other Celestials. Willow had picked up the modern ways a lot easier than all the others. Quick to adapt to the modern day rather than staying in the present.
Willow took some time to herself when arriving to the city. A way to slowly adapt to everything. Taking a bit longer than others. Letting her mind heal so she could get better. Taking one step at a time. Willow spent some time looking around for a job of some sort. Something to do to help pass the time. It was something that many Celestials choose to do as well. So they’re not all stuck and copped up back at the castle all the time. A way of blending in with everyone else to seem and take a as normal life. Even if their mind still lives in the past. Willow saw an advertisement in a local bookshop she’d passed one day when taking a walk through the city. There were a few times when Willow had passed the book stop, but never properly stopped to take a proper look. Till then. Seeing a job advertisement in the Willow, making the Redhead ponder whether or not look into it. Willow always loved sitting down and reading books. Always have been one of favourite hobbies and pastime. Having in the passed worked in a bookshop before many years ago. When she and Elias used to spend some years living in different places before moving onto the other. Having to leave her old life behind and the bookshop back then was hard as it was not an easy decision but others were starting to notice how the two weren’t starting to age. The time where every immortal supernatural have to move on and away. One of the downfalls of being immortal, leaving old lives behind.
On paper she had no proper qualifications for the job, since supernaturals couldn’t exactly put down all their jobs or qualifications like a normal person. Yet if needed she could easily create a document, to figure out how to forge what she needed to help her. Hoping that her bubbly and shining personality would come in handy. Always being her way to getting things. That is what happened, Willow was practically hired without needing to ask about the job. Not needing her own resume or interview. Being given a free pass making it easier for the Celestial. It made it better how easy she was able to get on with the owner, close to each others age. In looks. Willow always felt at ease around people who could easily get on with who were similar to her in personality wise. Happy not to get stuck with someone who she nothing in common or couldn’t get along with. Adding onto another reason why she’d enjoyed her job.
Only a mere few weeks have passed since she’d started her new job yet she was able to see the difference that she have made onto the shop itself. Willow was free to put her own input into giving different ideas of how she saw what could be easily down to make the bookshop a better place. To help run the place. Willow was surprised how Leigh have not gotten annoyed or said anything if she was overstepping any boundaries so far. Since it was his own job and business not wanting to seem like she was trying to over step and take over. Willow had gotten a bit too carried away and excited over all the different opportunities she could see the shop moving forwards putting maybe bit too much in put in but Leigh didn’t mind. The main area she knew needing a lot of focus on was the store room. Back when she first started she was curious in wanting to take a look in the storeroom. The Redhead was surprised and both shocked but not in a good way at the state of the storeroom.
A way to describe it was everything being stuffed in one place much as possible. Books of all types and ages were put there to be collected. Able to see that a lot of the storeroom had not been touched for a long time but had been added to. It wouldn’t surprise her if Leigh had left it since the last person who owned the book shop had. So the two decided that it would be best if they put their focus into tidying up the store room before they go about moving anything else around inside the shop.
Willow left the Celestial Castle early in the morning heading to the book shop, luckily it weren't too far. In walking distance, easy to get to. Arriving to the book shop in no time, opening the door and walking inside. The signal of the bell almost making her presence known. Willow looking to see Leigh looking half asleep almost with a cup of hot beverage in his hand to wake him up. “You ready for the big day ahead” She greeted with a grin on her face as she walked over to him being the more motivated of the door. “I see your dressed for the occasion too” She mused noticing how Leigh was dressed in more casual clothes because he didn’t want to get his nice clothes dirty. “I think we’ll have to gut out the storeroom if we want to get anywhere” Already full of ideas and ways to work around how to sort out the store room.
Leigh wasn’t exactly the typical kind of person you would see as a ‘boss’ he was quiet and thoughtful and always considered things deeply before making a decision which could make him seem indecisive or flippant. He also wasn’t the kinda guy who would want to discipline or fire someone which was why he had been so picky and difficult with the interview process, he didn’t just want to find someone to work at the store, he wanted to find someone he could see himself really getting along with. He could afford to employ someone and the business had been going well for the past year so he wasn’t worried about not being able to support someone, he just needed the right person with the right attitude who could invest themselves into the shop just as much as he did.
Willow was the definition of management material, she was organized and she understood people very well, she was the bright face at the counter who would always greet the customers when they came in and make friends with them. He was much quieter though his regular customers would still often ask where he was when he was out for the day working on his papers. It didn’t take long for him to trust Willow with looking after the shop on her own and honestly despite her lack of experience, she learned everything so quickly that he barely had to worry. It made him wonder a little how she wasn’t already a high up manager in some office somewhere but he never really got around to asking her about her aspirations and goals. She had definitely given him a wake-up call though, not being curt or quiet about things she thought needed improving from the rather dated way they tracked orders to the dreaded storeroom. He had put her off at first but she was very insistent that it needed to be dealt with. He didn’t feel like she was overstepping, in fact, he was glad to have someone who wasn’t afraid to speak their mind because it balanced out his quietness.
And she wasn’t wrong, the storeroom had definitely become messy, even to the point where he wasn’t sure of all the stock that was in there, though he wouldn’t admit that out loud. He was always so busy that he never got around to sorting it out and he knew they would probably find some interesting things in there, maybe even some antique books they could put up for sale once it was all tidied up or at least they would gain a room back to put more of the clutter into because it was starting to flow into the space behind the counter.
When he heard the bell he opened his eyes from his half snooze, Leigh was usually a morning person but today was a Saturday and his body was rejecting the idea of being at work on the weekend, but Willow seemed to have enough energy today for the two of them which soon perked him up, he finished up the last of the tea before he hopped off the counter and locked the front door to the shop so they didn’t have any wayward customers wandering in mid cleanout “About as ready as I can be” he grumbled with a half laugh “Yeah honestly I’m not actually sure what we might find in that storeroom so I decided to go with safe” he pointed to the trash bags he had gotten out and placed on the counter “Along with these, just in case” he smiled brightly, perhaps it wouldn’t be so bad with company, they made a pretty good team so far.
“I was afraid you were gonna say that” he admitted as he rolled his shoulders back, thankfully being a therian meant the heavy lifting part of all of this should be pretty easy for them “We’ll have to start by making space because I think there’s more in there than meets the eye, kinda like Mary Poppins’ bag” he wrinkled his nose, thankfully, most of the bookcases they had in the store were moveable. He started to get to work on pushing the racks that centered the room to the edge so there was a large space opening up in the middle of the room, they could move all the stuff there and then figure out the rest.
Glancing over at the redhead he smiled softly “You’re awfully energetic for early on a Saturday morning” he commented with raised brows, honestly, he was a little jealous of the way she always seemed to have so much get up and go spirit to her “Morning person?” he asked curiously, figured since they were going to spend the whole day on this they may as well get chatting.
Willow always liked to keep busy not one to sit about all of the time doing nothing. Keeping busy always helped her to keep her mind busy not always to just sit and worry all her worries. It was a way she found helped her to heal. Willow knew she’d never fully be okay still like many celestials are haunted by their past. The past events of the last half a century still was on top of their minds each day. It wasn’t something they could easily forget but had to move passed it in order to move on with their lives. Willow saw having a job was way around it, keeping her busy. Some weren’t ready enough to kept back into the real world. Taking longer to adapt. Whilst for Willow it all was different. Her and Elias picked up everything with how things have changed and adapted more easily than the others. Able to wrap their head around technology and fashion was one of the things. Normally finding herself having to teach some of the other celestials a few tricks or two. Even back before she was one to keep up with the times. It was something that you had to do with being around so many centuries. Way of blending in is to fit in.
Happy that the book shop was her little escapism. To feel like a semi normal person not to think and worry herself about being a celestial. Worrying about a target on her back. She was just like a normal person. Often she’d wondered if Leigh had figured out what she was, like how she was still figuring out the same. Yet it had not come up in conversation so far, not finding the right time and not needing to. Both of them enjoying being carefree it was how she fit into the job so easily so quick. Neither of them were serious or stuck up. Willow was happy that Leigh wasn’t one of them serious bosses who she’d have nothing in coming with, it’ll make everything the more harder.
Many people thought she was one of those people who made sure to have their morning coffee as soon as they wake up. Fueling them for each day but she didn’t. Just having a clear head was all she needed, so she could be ready for the day. It always confused everybody and now was confusing Leigh. With her being the opposite. Walking in Willow was almost waking up Leigh, who seemed like he could fall back to sleep at any moment. Willow was rolling her eyes at him almost, at least he remembered to wake up and come that was the main thing. If he’d overslept and forgetten then that would of been something different. “Are you upset that you had to wake up on a saturday morning” She mused teasing him noting that he weren’t a morning person at the weekends.
Willow was waiting for Leigh to wake up, watching as he went and locked the door to stop any customers coming in. Saturday weren’t one of the days that were normally open. Day that both of them could take off not having to solely rely on one of them staying and opening up the shop as it weren’t fair on either of them if they wanted to take a day for themselves. Closing the shop for the day helped them to move things around much easier without having customers coming in and out. Nobody other than themselves getting in the way. “Worried for what we may find in there? Don’t worry I’ll protect you” Willow laughed softly joking to him but too was serious at the same time. “It’ll mostly be falling books in there but you never now”
Both of them were mentally preparing themselves for the cleaning up and organising mission that is to come. Willow only saw a bit of the storeroom, she yet to wonder all that there is on inside. How long all have been left untouched and just piled up. Adding to it instead of it being sorted out. “Shouldn’t have left it to get that bad” Reminding that it was his fault that he’d left till when it’s needed to be sorted out. “Or room of requirement” She added chimining in, Willow recently watched all of the Harry Potter films after reading all the books. Trying to get up to date of the popular things. Willow stood waiting for Leigh to move things so they could have some space to move around to organise. Leaving him to do the heavy lifting
“I’ve been up for hours. Always better to wake up early so it means you have longer to get things done” A mantra that many people who were motivated daily lived by. It just takes a while to get into a routine then after is all easier. “Sorry that I’ve ruined your lay in” Willow joked. “Morning, night person. Either works” Sometimes Willow found lately to be running on zero hours of sleep but still motivated each morning to get up and on with the day. Not letting her thoughts and problems take over. “So how do you want to go about sorting this all out. Grouping into categories then surnames. Or age if there’s any old editions?” She wondered almost pondering to herself how they were going to go about sorting everything out. Figuring out a plan to start of with or making it up as they go. At the moment it was like looking for a needle in a haystack with how unorganized everything in the room was. Willow was surprised that they made enough room to move about and sort.
Leigh wasn’t exactly an organized person, he managed to get everything done when it needed to be done but he was rarely ahead of the curve when it came to completing tasks and he was quite a messy person, his apartment was littered with things all over the place, he knew where everything he needed was there though so it wasn’t really as chaotic. The storeroom, however, he had definitely let get out of hand. He kept telling himself he would sort it and then the day just kinda never came. It had taken Willow a few weeks to convince him to face up to it but he was grateful for the push, otherwise, he feared he would never actually get it sorted. Willow was pretty much the opposite of him, he always noticed the way she would tidy the front desk and organize all the papers and preorder piles whenever she was on shift and while it had annoyed him at first, he had learned her system and begun following it pretty quickly. She did have a way when it came to stock management which he definitely didn’t which was why he was letting her take the lead on this.
The two of them didn’t often work together because the main reason he had hired another person was so they could mind the shop when he was busy writing his business journals or academic papers, working on his Ph.D. was very time consuming after all and he really wanted to make a difference with the work he was doing which he couldn’t do if he was constantly spending his time at the store. Don’t get him wrong, he loved the place, but it was definitely a passion project for him rather than the only thing he wanted to focus his life around. When they did work together though, the conversation was usually lighthearted and easy, full of jokes back and forth which was nice and set the usually shy and bashful kitsune at ease a little.
Leigh was half awake when Willow came breezing into the store and honestly, a part of him was wondering if it was possible to suck up a person’s energy and bottle it for later because she always seemed to have so much of it. Sometimes he got the impression from her that she was making up for lost time, the way she was always so eager to do things without question. Like coming in on a Saturday to clear the storeroom, for example, he hadn’t really been expecting it and while he was paying her of course, he still appreciated the effort she was going to. “I mean it’s not the first choice of things I’d usually do on a Saturday” he responded with a half chuckle “But then I figure staying at home and cooking pancakes while I watch Saturday morning TV probably isn’t a good reason not to be here” he smiled sheepishly and shrugged, he was definitely not the super adventurous or busy type.
“I’m kinda worried we’ll both end up under a pile of dusty books and records” he admitted with a laugh, he was pretty sure there was stock in there from before he even owned the place, things they wouldn’t even be able to sell. “Who knows, we might find some treasure though” he spoke imagining if they found an old first edition or something, though that was probably more wishful thinking than an actual likelihood. The joke she made did make him laugh “You say it as a joke but if I do get buried then I am seriously going to need you to dig me out” he admitted with a shrug, yes, it was probably that bad.
One of the main perks of being a therianthrope, everything was really easy to lift and move, so as he reorganized the current placement of the racks to clear out space on the main floor he was moving pretty effortlessly despite the fact that most of them were quite heavy “Thank you for that insight, Sargeant obvious” he teased with a laughed when she told him he shouldn’t have let it get so bad, he’d put off most things in life if he could, always the guy who turns his papers in at the very last minute. Didn’t mean he didn’t work hard on them when he did get around to them though, Leigh was very studious and put his all into everything he set his mind to. Noting the Harry Potter reference he raised his brows and smirked “Didn’t have you pegged as a Harry Potter fan” he commented with a chuckle “What’s your house?” he asked curiously.
“You’re crazy” Leigh spoke when she said she’d been up for hours, he’d literally had to drag himself out of bed an hour ago and he still felt like he was half asleep, he sipped at his coffee which was thankfully helping to wake him up a little because he knew how much the two of them needed to get done today “Though it does sound pretty poetic” he would give her that much, he acknowledged as he glanced over at her for a moment. He cleared his throat as they spoke about how to best organize the stock “Well I was having a think about what you’ve been doing with the desk” his eyes drifted over to it and back to the redhead “So I was thinking we start with the preorders we keep in there and get some sort of organization system together, maybe by customer surname” he nodded a little “As for the rest of the stock, maybe we should see how much we can get rid of and then decide whether it can go out in the shop or if we need to reorder it. To be honest, he was expecting a lot of it to be old papers and boxes of stationery which they probably didn’t need to keep “I’ll pass you stuff out, feel free to start calling the shots. With that, he headed inside and started with the nearest box to him before passing it over to her.
Since escaping from imprisonment, all the celestials including herself were trying to play catch up in a way. All of them were missing so many decades. Being stuck. Forgotten about and wiped from existence in those years. Truthfully she always felt full of regret in a way, knowing she’d missed out in a way. Yet she was thankful for all she had seen just only she wishes she could see the new century through herself from the start. Trying her best to fit in. Not looking like an outsider that many celestials still feel like. A few have yet to get in the whole swings of things. Mostly it was down to how people dress these days and the technology. Whilst for Willow and her brother Elias they picked it up so easily. The two of them always were good at fitting in with whichever century it was. With what happens when you’ve been around for many centuries, forgetting the ones gone passed. Willow was a bit saddened to see how many few people are interested in books and book shops these days compared to how it used to be. Mostly it was down to technology. People prefered to download books onto their smartphone or to listen to audio copies of them instead. It weren’t that good for book shops, for business side of things. Yet Willow too was starting to notice an estray of regular customers. People who visit and stop by the book shop regularly. If it was to sit and read a good book or to buy some copies. Books weren’t all that forgotten.
Willow was happy that Leigh had believed in and offered her the job. Sometimes she wondered if she didn’t have this small day job. It’s only been a few weeks yet ones that have made a lot of difference to her. Already able to feel herself going back to her old self. Able to feel more relaxed and opened up. Instead of staying back at the Celestial castle hurled up in her room, living in fear of the outside world. Instead here she was able to get out, fresh air. Well almost, with how many old and musty books were scattered around. Yet she was used to the smell by now. Thinking of plans for the job keeps Willow busy. She’s always surprised to how Leigh doesn’t mind how she’s been helping him and giving him ideas. Always a bit worried if she was overstepping so quickly, it was his business and all. Not wanting to give him the wrong idea yet that wasn’t how it was. Which made the way they worked more better. Helping him out by working in the shop, covering the hours he was busy. Since the reason of the job was for her to be able to work through the hours he couldn’t so it both worked their own ways.
It amused herself catching Leigh half asleep whilst she waltzed in all full of energy. The polar opposite to him this morning. Able to tell that he weren’t a saturday person. Knowing that some people choose to take the weekends easy, if it was to sleep in or days to do nothing. That was what it was like for him. Normally at the weekends Willow would go out shopping or something. Just something to get out of the house not liking to be all cooped up. “You’ll be thankful you took the day to do it tho” She mused softly reminding him that one day of hard work meant for a lot more easier days. “Gotta love saturday tv, there’s always news or cooking shows on in the mornings” Yet she was one of the people who avoided watching daytime tv, always finding more better things to do during her day. Things so she could feel that she had done at least something, that and there’s only so much day time tv. Almost preferring the times when TV wasn’t a big thing and was all in black and white. “Maybe when we’re done you can watch what you were going to on catch up and then make pancakes for dinner” She teased smirking to him seeing if he was too dedicated on his saturday routine to break it.
“Death by books, that’ll be the way one of us will go” The redhead giggled a little, how much irony was in it. “Do you have a record player, maybe we’ll be able to listen to music that we find” Maybe hoping that they’d find some classics within the carnage called a storeroom. “If you find a first edition of some sort I bet you’ll be the first to try” She teased smirking a little able to picture it now, first editions were always a book nerds dream. Willow used to have few that she collected over the years but now we're all lost along with all from her past life. It saddened her a little but she knew she couldn’t dwell on it, not able to go back and change anything now “It could be comfy though” Half tempted to leave him buried in a coffin of books for the fun of it seeing it he’ll be able to dig himself out.
Willow just rolled her eyes to his comment, able to see if coming from her remark. “Better late than never” She reminded, following him through into the storeroom but letting him take the lead. Just incase anything would come crumbling down he’d be the first one to get hit. At the mention of Harry Potter she watched as Leigh was stopping in his tracks almost. “Found the copies lying about and thought why not. Then ended up watching the movies too” The default any book reader has when the series end, not wanting it to be over. “I would say I’m either Gryffindor or Ravenclaw. Then on the other hand I haven’t got enough courage to be a Gryffindor and I’m not clever enough to be a Ravenclaw. So I’ll say I’m more life a Hufflepuff” She rambled instead of giving him a straight answer, maybe more he was asking for. “What about you? Which house would the sorting hat put you in?” He knew hers now it was time for him to spill sensing he may be more like Hufflepuff like her.
“I can run on zero hours of sleep at times” She admitted shrugging her shoulders a little, occasionally suffering from insomnia but it weren’t bad these days. “Maybe you should give it a go, you never know it might turn your life around” She chimed in winking to the korean born, teasing him for not being a morning person like her. Both of them turned the conversation back to work instead of distracting each other by talking about random things. “Thats a good idea then we’ll be able to search for people more easier” Smiling softly agreeing with the idea. “We get quite a few regular customers so it’ll be easier if everything is all on a database” Knowing whose got any outstanding books or what not. “Yeah like we’ve already got enough junk as it is not needing an increase of it” Willow cleared most of random bits and bobs on the front desk soon after she started. Instead of having it all clogged up not knowing where to look for anything but left Leigh a draw for random bits so she didn’t change everything completely. “Want me to get some sticky notes and pens so we can make piles for what we want to keep, get rid of, give away or undecided” That would be the best idea. “Marie Kondo everything” Taking everything out then if it don’t spark joy through it out. Wondering if Leigh had caught her reference.
Leigh wasn’t exactly a grumpy person, he was just very underspoken, he preferred to listen to others rather than be the loudest voice in the room, which probably made him a pretty strange pick for a business owner and yet somehow it had worked pretty well for him, owning this place and coming in every day ensured that he kept talking to people. It was hard at first but being here forced him to come out of his shell a little and he was slowly beginning to realize that people, for the most part, weren’t as bad as he made them out to be in his head. It had been just him and the shop for a long time and a part of him liked that, he worked to his own schedule, he could do things at his own pace, he’d built some pretty good relationships with his customers too and overall felt like it was in a good place. But his heart was also in his research papers which were getting more and more demanding lately, hence the need for someone to help. He’d been worried he might find someone with a clashing personality and he wouldn’t get along with them but generally, Willow was really nice to be around and that put him at ease.
He definitely wasn’t a morning person though, he was the kind of person that would sleep in until noon given half the chance but unfortunately that wasn’t how the world worked and so here he was, up early on a Saturday of all days “Maybe we should work out the shifts so you work the mornings and I work the afternoons” he teased noting how chipper she seemed to be today, it was pretty energizing being around her if he was honest, she was positive so much of the time and he could feel that rubbing off on him when they worked together. She was right though, getting this done was going to make both their lives easier “Well the tricky part is going to be keeping it that way” he teased with a laugh, cleaning and organizing only went so far, you also had to make sure that you kept putting things in the right place “But I’m sure you’ll be around to tell me off when I put something in the wrong place” cause let’s be real, if someone was going to screw it up, it would be him. His stomach was growling at the thought of pancakes “Well that gives me some motivation to finish this” he mused as he rolled his eyes playfully at her “Do you have a motivation food?” he asked with a chuckle, he felt like most people did.
He gave a scrunch of his nose when she teased about death by books “Well at least we’d go surrounding by something we love” he teased back to her with raised brows, they both loved books, hence why they worked at a bookstore. Leigh was more into the non-fictional academic literature overall but he could definitely also appreciate a good story. When she mentioned a record player he gave a thoughtful look and then narrowed his eyes a little and headed into the break room, he found the old record player in the corner that was collecting dust and then peered back at her “Well there’s one in here but no promises that it actually works” he teased with a slight shake of his head. He picked it up and brought it back to the counter so that he could place it on top and then plug it into the socket underneath “Alright, let’s see what we can find to test it” well at least the music would make it feel less dull and they might find some really interesting tunes.
Leigh was a bit of what could be considered a stereotypical nerd, always has his nose in a book, generally quiet, likes the kinds of things you’d see at comic cons and actual comics. He didn’t really enthuse about his interests with most because he felt like a lot of what he said would fall on deaf ears but it seemed Willow had a little bit of inner nerd in her too. Her explanation was pretty relatable, sometimes you felt like there were different sides of yourself that fit into different boxes “So you’re like a hybrid of everything be Slytherin” he jested with a grin, definitely worse combinations “I’m told I have the intelligence to be a Ravenclaw but I think my general awkwardness probably makes me a Hufflepuff” he grinned “So I guess we can be Hufflepuffs together” he teased with a laugh, well his favorite color was yellow so maybe it all made sense now.
The way she spoke about being able to run on zero hours of sleep nearly made him physically wince, he couldn’t imagine pulling an all-nighter nowadays, he had been able to do it when he was 16 or 17 but nowadays he needed at least 7 hours to function like a semi-normal person “Pass, I’ll leave the insanity to you Willow” he chuckled giving her a slightly shy smile, he was glad the two of them were getting along because it would make this whole thing a lot easier and make the day go faster for them. Which considering what they were doing was quite repetitive and manual. “Okay so the stock system is currently in a database, so if I add a location table we can program in where everything is located and that should let us easily pick up the place the order should be” he leaned forward, tapping on the computer on the desk to get started on that so he could fill in what they decided along the way. He glanced up at her and chuckled thinking about all the useless crap they were about to find “Yeah, let’s get everything labeled up and then we’ll make the hard decisions” he smiled, looking up at her as she mentioned Marie Kondo “Well I’m nowhere near her level but with your help, maybe we’ll get there.”
While she was busy labeling out the areas, he finished adding the new table to the database and then headed into the storage room, dragging out several boxes and putting them down in the middle of the room. It mostly seemed like junk but having never been through these things the whole time he’d been here, he quite literally didn’t know what to expect and wondered if perhaps he would be pleasantly surprised with what they found. There were about 8 boxes like it, full to the brim with books and other interesting looking items “I take no responsibility for whatever is in most of these, pretty sure they have been in this store longer than me” to make the point he blew some dust off the top of the box he was holding and then pulled a chess board from the top “Hmm” he spoke as he jerked his chin “You ever played chess?” he’d always wanted to get himself a set but he mostly settled for playing it online against strangers, he was decently good at it.
Having and getting in a routine is good for the mind and general mental health. Something that Willow found most helpful to her. It took her a long time to get back to normal almost. To be in a better place all she could. Still finding herself struggling a bit still haunted from her dark pasts. Something she knew she’d never heal completely from. It was the same for every other celestials who suffered the same fate of imprisonment. All who were innocent still suffered at the hands of people who they did nothing wrong. Willow knew that she’d never befind anyone of the Ailward fraction, if it was an Aspect or guard member. Still feeling spiteful and hatred too them, like most people. Not willing to forget and forgive. Working in the bookshop had helped her more than she thought it would. Before Willow thought she couldn’t see herself working in another book shop. Thinking now it maybe would be something of the past rather than something that people still enjoy nowadays. Seeing with all this modern technology and new ways around to reading a book, people still enjoy visiting olden book shops. Happy to see that people still did it if not, Willow knew she wouldn’t have a job. Before Willow was struggling to see a future here in Evermore, with before she was starting to have second thoughts. Thinking maybe her brother Elias was right that they’d be better off starting afresh, somewhere knew. Somewhere safe, yet Willow knew that wasn’t the best way around. Seeing how well they had gotten when they tried to go about a normal life. Both of them knew they were best to stay all together as a faction. Able to face their problems and enemies face on, and they’d be ready this time around.
With the mention of changing shifts around Willow knew straight away what he was trying to do “You just want to have where you never have to do any early mornings” Shooting him a look like she knew what he was playing stipping him in his tracks “Am I right or am I wrong?” She teased sarcastically before laughing a little since she knew he was joking. “I like having different shifts, suiting both around our lives” Shrugging her shoulders a little. Willow knew reason to why she was taken on because she was flexible able to work around shifts to make Leigh’s life easier so he could focus on his studies. Willow could see what may happen a few weeks later if they don’t keep up to date with making sure they follow their system, things may go back to a mess again. Starting back to square one. Every organiser worst nightmare. “We just got to make sure we get into a system of how to work around things. It may be harder at the start but it’ll get easier” Willow reminded him sounding like a broken record almost. “Hmm maybe, we’ll just wait and see” Yet almost 100% sure that what end up happening “If your really that desperate for food then if we make enough process in an hour. I may order us some food or go out to get some” Almost prying his motivation for food following in with his wishes in a way.
Willow grinned hearing as Leigh mused with her death by books. “To go on our headstones so everyone will know” She teased back still laughing about it yet like he said it wasn't a bad way to go. Willow was a bit confused seeing Leigh go off and leave mid conversation seeing him come back with a record player. “Lets see” The redhead gasped a little bit excited always happy to see old treasures being brought back and used once again. Hearing record players were slowly coming back into fashion again. “Hopefully it’ll be something good” She mused a little hoping that it wouldn’t be something both out of their comfort zones. Willow herself wasn’t all into loud, upbeat and lively music. Like many celestials she was still old fashioned in her ways, with music more so with clothes and technology it was another thing. “Who knows we could find something that's worth a bit of money, I hear some Vinyls goes for a lot of money these days” Maybe more of a slight chance but still was quite a possibility since even Leigh himself didn't know what may be in there.
She wasn't a malicious person most people always said that she was a kind heart but guarded at the same time. So when it came to thinking where she belonged she knew she wasn’t a bad person. “Never really liked snakes of any sort” She smirked a little to him. “Hufflepuffs for life” Willow grinned back cheering almost the two of them making a pact. Talking about what houses they were to belong to. Any ice breaker. Willow was happy that her and Leigh got on, forming a friendship straight away. No boring or awkward silences.
As she was speaking about her struggle with sleep saw how Leigh was wincing even thinking about it. Making her grin seeing clearly how he wasn’t a morning person yet not a night person at the same time who liked their sleep. “You never notice the time till you see the sunrise in the morning then you realise that it’s too early but too late to go back to sleep” Anyones constant struggle with not sleeping much at times. “I’m guessing you're the type of person who could take naps during the day if they had the chance. Is that why there’s a sofa in the back” Willow continued to tease him raising a brow crossing her arms to see if she was right just to annoy him a little. Both of them turned the conversation around back to work since that's the reason why there were here and all. Why Willow managed to drag Leigh out of bed early so they could sort everything they… well mostly Leigh had been putting off. “That’ll work make everything easier for the both of us” Nodding her head letting Leigh be in charge of that part since he sounded like he knew what he was doing. “Everything got to look worse before it can get better” Reminding him of one of her golden rules taking everything out so they can put it all back.
Whilst Leigh was busy making and organizing a customer database or whatever he was trying to do, Willow took the opportunity to have a head start with the storeroom. Carefully trying to sort through and take things out. Seeing how much stuff they had to go in there and how much weren’t important. Occasionally coughing with old dust filling the air from all the old books and things dotted around. Soon after starting Willow was starting to regret her decision of sorting through everything. “I think we should have hired a skip or something” Willow mused motioning to how much junk they have already found. “That doesn’t sound promising” Rolling her eyes a little looking over to the boxes wondering if maybe something would jump out at them with their luck. Willow shook her head to him asking her about chess, weirdly it was something she’d never got into. Even with how long she’s been alive and how long chest been around. “Nope, I never got into it. I think my brother used to play but it ever interested me” Trying not to offend him but it weren’t her sort of thing. “The whole strategy thing confuses me” Never able to wrap her head around it.
“I mean I wouldn’t complain about not having to do early mornings” he teased with a soft laugh, he was always like a zombie first thing in the morning and sometimes customers had to ask him something twice before he finally realized they were speaking to him or wanted him to do something, he gave a shy laugh “Plus the university keeps asking me to come in for early morning lectures” he gave an annoyed look, like he was supposed to be able to deliver a lecture with full energy and spirit at such a ridiculous hour. He much preferred afternoon lectures and was usually able to wake everyone up from their lunchtime lull with his interesting stories and explanations. “Yeah well right now the system is non existent so we really can’t get much worse at the very least” well he hoped so anyway because he wasn’t sure he’d be able to survive another customer waiting impatiently for him to try and find stock that had somehow gone walkabouts and he’d already had to process some re-orders just this week. It had to end sometime. “I’m always desperate for food, I swear I eat like 6 times a day” he laughed softly and that wasn’t even including coffee breaks where he normally had a cake.
“Well if we’re both in here and we never open the shop it might actually take them a pretty long time to find us” he chuckled softly “Especially me, I don’t have many friends” mostly because he tended to avoid people and the few people he did consider friends weren’t exactly close friends, he guessed he just preferred being alone most of the time. “Yeah they’re making a real comeback” he commented as he knelt down for a moment to plug the device into the wall socket and then flipped the on switch watching it intently to see if it turned on. When it did he smiled brightly “So far so good” he commented before hunting through the piles of stuff until he found a few records stacked on top of one another “It seems our previous owner was an Elvis fan” he commented holding one of them up with a smile and then he set it onto the plate “Moment of truth” he spoke as he moved the needle to the edge of the turntable and set it to play, there was a sound of static and then the sound of music started echoing through the room.
He laughed at their little Hufflepuff pact, Leigh had always liked the Harry Potter books and had read them all through many times, frankly he just loved writing in general but when a franchise like that took off then there were lots of people vested in it and that meant getting to see a lot of fan-made content and cosplays which he enjoyed. Her little promise made him hold his hand up for a high five from her “For life indeed” he teased enjoying how easy it was to joke around with her and not feel weird or out of place as he did around a lot of people he met.
“The struggles of insomnia” he chimed into her words and shook his head, he was definitely guilty of staying up too late often and screwing up his sleeping pattern and then once it was ruined then it was very hard to recover because he would end up napping and not being tired when he was supposed to be tired “You’re right though, I’m impartial to the odd cat nap” he chuckled softly, not usually purposely, to be honest but that couch was so damn comfortable “Not on the clock though” he widened his eyes when he realized what she was suggesting and shook his head amused that she was so sassy with him, sometimes you wouldn’t know who was the owner here. “Yeah well I’m not sure it can actually look much worse, I already tripped over something in the storeroom twice this week alone” he bit his tongue and laughed, maybe that was just him being generally clumsy though.
Despite his grumbling about it, he was actually really glad they had finally gotten around to doing this though because he knew the situation was slowly getting worse and worse and he and Willow were bickering over the lost stock and general lack of space more and more “Or an incinerator” he responded as he blew some dust off the top of one of the many boxes he had pulled out “You’d think the previous owner would have wanted to take at least some of this with them” he coughed a little and started sorting through the first one, starting a bin pile and a keep pile. Most of the items were broken or completely useless so he tossed them into the trash pile but he did find a couple of old and dusty books which took his interest for a moment. “Ah shame, I was thinking about setting it up on the coffee table” he was probably going to do that anyway though, seemed like an appropriate thing to do in a bookstore and maybe he could play a couple of games with customers.
He finished sorting that box and grabbed another, reaching over her as he did so and chuckling because she was so tiny that she seemed entirely dwarfed by his height “So what do you do for fun then?” he asked curiously “Other than reading books obviously” he added knowing they both adored doing that since that was exactly what they bonded over when she came in for the interview for the position. He continued sorting through the next box and found a bunch of pens and pencils which looked like they had been bought in an art store and never used before “Hmm...strange these don’t look used at all” he commented as he set them aside on the floor.
At the beginning when Willow was first looking into and taking the job, she thought it would be a small part time thing. Way for her to keep herself busy but still wanted to have enough time for herself. Not thinking she was ready to go full time. Now it all was different. Sometimes she found herself spending more time at the bookshop than back at the castle where she lived with other Celestials. It was more than a job to her. Willow never has been one of those people who only thought and worried about money. Many decades ago when it was frowned upon for a woman to have any job or any sorts, Willow would have worked for free mostly. Just happy to help out and volunteer for where she was needed mostly. A strong, independent woman one who didn’t need to rely on the help and money of other men. “Hmm is that right but it would mean that you’ll be here for the late closes. What if you have papers to write or grade but you get too distracted by here?” Willow crossed her arms raising a brow telling him it’s one rule for one and one rule for another. Why mixed shifts work best for them. “The whole book shops going online haven’t been much of a winner yet” She added, it was taking a lot longer than they had first thought it would be. Seeing as half of things were online and tracked. Then with the other half being written in a book, written and stamped off. Not making it easy for them to know when any books are overdue or anything.
Willow knew too well that food would be something to motivate Leigh to wake up, push through and motivate him. Easy target almost. “So it's you who's been eating the cakes and biscuits I bring in?” She teased trying to catch him in the act. Willow knew that they could spend a few days locked up in the shop before anyone knows, with how she wouldn’t be totally forgotten. “My brother would come looking for me, since coming back he’s keen on keeping tabs on me. Considering he left for months on end, with nearly no word” She was still a little mixed of what to think of her brother returning from god knows where. In her time of need he wasn’t there. Finding the bookshop, the job and friendship that she had with Leigh was her salvation in a way. Yet she wouldn’t admit it out loud. Willow watched as Leigh went to try playing a record on the old record player they had found whilst trying to work their way into decluttering the back. “Whose Elvis?” She wondered sounding like it was something strange to her. The Celestial still was unknown to all of the different and new artists and modern things that have come out in the years that she had missed. By the look of the stack of how many records where was by that person she thought it would have been someone big. “I prefer slower and more melody songs” Not one for rock and roll that people are into these days.
A grin appeared on her lips at the mention of their pact, high fiving Leigh back as they joke around speaking about Harry Potter. It still amazed her a little to see how far things have come. People's love for books were still strong, she was happy that hadn’t changed. Some people told her to take a nap when she feels tired but it wasn't easy as that. Never able to clock off for long enough. If she did, she’d only feel worse than before. Whilst over people could take naps so easily. “I saw this morning your ‘cat nap” Willow reminded him to when he was asleep when she walked in but not knowing if it was just Leigh being half asleep. A laugh escaped her lips hearing as he spoke of tripping over all the clutter in the past week. “See now you admit that it was a health hazard waiting to happen” She too had nearly tripped over a couple of times yet she was bit accident prone too. Not adding to how she had walked into a customer by accident that one time whilst carrying a stack of books.
With a couple of hours of couple hours of hard work already passed they were slowly starting to see some process happening. Well enough floor space to see what type of old wooden flooring was beneath all the clutter. Willow felt that they’d be forever trying to get rid of all the crap that they were finding for the next few weeks or months at this rate. Yet at least progress was being made and they were both happy for it. Willow could see that now Leigh was starting to warm up and be grateful that they’d started this project now. Able to tell that if she didn’t suggest the idea, it would have been put off for another long time to build up even worse to how it already was. If that was even possible. “Hmm knowing on you with your clumsiness, you’ll end up setting alight to the place” Willow pointed out giving him a look that she knew him too well to know what would happen with his ideas. “A lot of this stuff is junk to be honest, maybe he’s thinking that whoever would of bought this place is a fool not to look at the back room. Or room of doom as people may call it” Even with how long they’d been sorting through everything they’ve not found much of any value. Truthfully a lot is junk rather than treasure. “How about you set it up and you can play a round of chess with yourself” She mused sarcastically yet she was serious at the same time, able to see Leigh playing against himself.
Willow could see Leigh laughing at her as he was reaching over her to get another box instead of going round because she was short. “Don’t laugh, it’s not my fault your tall and lanky” She huffed a little complaining but could use it as an excuse not to go grab the higher boxes. The Redhead paused for a moment needing to think of what she likes other than boxes, always a problem for someone like them. “I’ve been getting into technology software and that sort of stuff” Both her and Elias picked up the use of modern technology a lot quicker than any other celestials. She didn’t know whether to look at some courses in the future to do with it. “Can you draw?” She wondered looking over to him seeing he was setting aside something he had found hidden away in all the clutter. Willow too spotted some treasure hidden within seeing a teapot set that looked like it was untouched too, already an idea came inside her head, “Hey, look there’s an old tea cup set. We could always use it for display work someone, maybe to do with an Alice in Wonderland theme. Using the olden copies” She suggested looking over to him softly already thinking of different ideas they could do to bring something new yet old to the bookshop.
“Well papers are pretty easy to do in the quiet times anyway” he responded nonchalantly with a shrug of his shoulders “The store is great but isn’t busy constantly, I mostly start tidying and organizing things after a while” though not nearly in the depth they were planning to do today. “Yeah well you can’t pick up the book and read a few pages online, I don’t usually get a feel for a book in just reading the back or looking at the cover” there were rare cases he just knew he’d like something of course but more of the time he mulled over different stories before he chose one to purchase. Plus the store was becoming more and more like a little cafe with the room they served tea in at the back and it seemed a lot of people came by to get some peace and quiet and just read through a few chapters. He definitely hid back there sometimes.
He gave a slightly sheepish grin when she called him out for eating all of the food she brought in “In my defense, my stomach is basically a vacuum and everything you bring is amazing” he had a shifty look on his face but once he started eating he often didn’t know how to stop. “Well at least someone is looking out for you” he commented with a light chuckle though he could tell from the tone of her voice that she didn’t like being monitored and who could blame her when he hadn’t been around “Ouch” he spoke softly as he looked back at her “So he’s in trouble right now then” he teased slightly to lighten the mood, Willow was a kind and sweet person so it made him a little sad to know someone abandoned her like that but she definitely knew how to take care of herself and he respected that. “Only like the biggest rock star of the 50s” he responded with a chuckle, sometimes it felt like Willow was on another planet entirely with what references she did and didn’t know “Ahhh she’s a pop kind of girl” he chuckled “Don’t think we’re going to find much of that in old records” he admitted and smiled slightly.
He blushed and laughed shyly hiding his face behind his hands for a moment “Hey there aren’t really any customers early in the mornings, getting in a little extra sleep never hurt anyone” especially when his sleeping schedule was always messed up and he felt like a zombie sometimes. He gave her a stern look for a moment and shook his head “Believe me I knew that, I just knew how many hours it was going to take to fix” and because it was something customers couldn’t see it was easy to just keep putting it off and pretend it didn’t exist. But then Willow had come along and she wasn’t the type of person who could ignore the clutter, it was one of the very first things she had commented on when she started working here and while Leigh had kept putting it off, in the end, he had to agree with her, it needed sorting out.
Before long you could see both progress and evidence that a bomb may have hit the shop, the storeroom shelves were starting to empty as they turned over different items and decided what to do with each, most of them were already in garbage bags and ready to go out in the morning but there were a few good things. But as soon as you walked out into the store itself, you could see the piles of clutter that were now spread out everywhere, he knew it needed sorting but it was a little disheartening seeing the amount of stuff they needed to go through. “Room of doom” he commented with an amused smile as he headed back out of the room to set out the chessboard on to the table in the back room, it was actually a really well-made board and set “Bold of you to assume I’d be able to beat myself” he commented with a laugh, Leigh was pretty smart and calculations were his thing so chess was something that fascinated him and playing himself would probably lead to hours of time sinking away.
“Don’t worry, being tall is also a curse, I swear the number of times I’ve hit my head on that doorframe” he pointed out the one which lead into the backroom area where they usually curled up to read books on their breaks and made tea. Also where Willow usually left any sweets she brought in. “Technology huh?” he raised his brows, he’d been raised in the age where technology was rapidly developing so he’d always had a minor interest in it, which was pretty surprising considering how number centric computers were and how easy he could get lost in them “Like writing software?” he raised how brow and then when she asked if he could draw he shook his head “Not well, but sometimes I do it anyway just because it’s fun” though he was sure she knew that because he always ended up doodling all over the notepad on the desk. When Willow mentioned she had seen something he glanced over his shoulder at her and saw the teapot and cups, they looked adorable “That’s actually a really cool idea, we have the glass cabinet, we could dedicate a level to each one or something” he beamed slightly as he tied up another bag and then picked one up taking them outside and placing them into the garbage can out front, as he headed back inside he took a look and let out a relieved breath “I don’t think I’ve ever been so glad to be able to see the floor” he commented with a laugh.
Sometimes Willow didn’t know how Leigh did it all, both studying and then owning a bookshop at the same time. Seeing now why he was keen on taking her on in the bookshop as another helping hand. Already together they’ve been able to turn things around with how she had more time to help out than him, unlike him she didn’t have any other responsibilities. “Until you get the old customers who don’t know where some books are or what they’re looking for and they constantly keep coming back wanting our help” She reminded him how everyday weren’t always the quiet ones. Willow had the knack by now for knowing what some customers want even without them even asking. If it was already getting some books by the till of what they were talking about the other day or ready there to show them. Always one step ahead. “But not go further into organising the store room” Seeing with the state of how the store room was that it was something he’d been putting off for a while until she came along wanting to put a change to the disorganisation. Putting a woman’s touch on the place, something that every book shop needs. Willow never did get the hang of finding books online, like with what Leigh was saying she prefer to read books on paper rather than online. “Sometimes I don’t get properly into a book after a couple chapters in” Like many people to see if the story was any good, she knew that sometimes it takes a couple chapters in till you get a feel of it. “Good thing about this place you don’t need to spend money on buying books, whilst online you can’t do it” Luckily for them some people were still old fashioned as them if not they would have no customers and no income coming in.
Willow knew she was right finding out who was eating all the food she brings in but she didn’t mind. Used to feeding plenty of mouths with back in the manor she helped to cook meals for the other Celestials back home. “I knew it” She grinned knowing she was right,. “Maybe it means I’ll have to bring more in to fill all your growing needs” Men are always constantly hungry, Leigh reminded her of her brother at times always eating. “I’m sure there’s someone out there looking out for you too” Sounding hopeful giving him a soft smile. Willow didn’t know too much about Leigh’s personal life only really the academic side, yet she knew she was just in the same. One she loved about working in this place with Leigh that it was all a breath of fresh air never having to worry about her own problems she has gone on at work. “He is but he knows that I’m never mad at him for long” She’d be giving him the silent treatment for a while then forgive him when it all blows over as they’re family after all. When Willow was called out for not knowing who this Elvis Presley person was she knew that she slipped up a little with it being the years she’d lost when locked up. “Ohh yeah him, I remember now” Pretending that it was all coming back to her and she knew what he was talking about but really she has no clue.
“Guilty as changed” She grinned a little. “I hear records are coming back in fashion so they’d be some new ones about” Something for everyone. Willow watched the moment as she mentioned his cat nap earlier, catching him in the act. “Sleeping on the job, tut tut boss” Shooting him a judging look but was only trying to tease him. sometimes when she didn’t get too much sleep the night before she would often find herself nearly falling asleep on the desk, but not as often as Leigh does. “They always say that the long you put something off, the longer it takes” Seeing too well that it was right for this place, thing just being pushed in the hopes that it’ll fit until you eventually have to tackle the mess. “Luckily for you I like to clean and tidy the place, put things straight. Well not all things” Willow laughed softly, pushing past threw him to grab a few bits starting to make piles of what was worth keeping and what wasn’t. Able to see that it was going to take them most of the day to sort things out.
It was a lot easier with both of them working together to sort through everything, rather than if it was just one person. Willow started to make a system early on. Making a pile of stuff she knew they wanted to keep, then ones for Leigh to sort through and one that she knew was junk straight away. “I’m definitely going to need a long bath tonight, get rid of all this dust and musty smell” Already able to feel the dust collect in her threat from how things were left untouched for so long. “I think we might have to take some of this rubbish to the tip, don’t think it’ll fit in our bins” Willow pointed out looking over to Leigh, with they had more clutter getting rid of than expected. “It won’t be room of doom anymore” She grinned a little with how much progress they’ve already made. Willow didn’t need to ask now what Leigh was doing as he left the room with the chessboard. Seeing how his face lit up when finding it. “So if I can’t find you for hours I know you’ll be deep in chess game against yourself” Seeing he was the type of person who would stick at something for hours, figuring out a plan and strategies. Even if it was to figure out how to outbeat themselves in a game. “I prefer games on a phone, I may have a soft spot the game or two of candy crush when it’s not busy” She admitted sheepishly, but she knew when to stop whilst for chess you couldn’t until you win.
Sometimes she hated being short, not being able to reach everything that tall people could. Or even the small people joke some people use. With how both her brother and Leigh were much taller than she was didn’t help. “Wait so that's the reason why there’s dents on the doorframes out back” Pretending to be shocked and that he dented the doorframe. “Maybe I should get a sign that says mind your head” Old book shops like these always have low ceilings when changing room between room to room. It was all fine for her but not for other people. Willow have never been too sure of what she wanted to do. Truthfully she was happy with her job in the bookshop keeping herself busy. Still not finding her place yet in this modern world, like many other Celestials who yet to figure themselves out again. She wanted to seem useful giving her input in different and new ideas of how to help the shop but not overstepping it. Just some ideas that used to work well in the olden days when there used to be more book shops than there are now. Willow smiled hearing how he liked her idea of how to use the cups and teapots in the shop for a display. “You can decide on what you want for the other level too if you wanted” Having a space for both of their ideas. For what felt like hours of hard work, they have just about gotten clear of the storeroom. Turning it ll room. “We’re not going to let it get back in that state again right?” She mused shooting him a questionable look wanting it to be kept to how they’ve just organised. “There’s even room now to unbox new deliveries instead of trying to do it in the middle of the shop. Rather than being in the way” Making use of the room they’ve made and turned around.
“Well unfortunately we can’t stay afraid of change forever, the world keeps moving and if we don’t move with it then we’ll get left behind” which is why even though he loved the bookstore and put everything he had into making it a place people wanted to shop, he knew it had to be more than just this, people weren’t going to go to stores to buy books forever “Plus with more space in there we should be able to get in some more stock” which would help them to cover more pop culture type topics, he’d been thinking about including manga comics and the likes which appealed to the younger generation. He fixed his glasses as she spoke about being able to check a book before buying “Yeah sometimes what you read on the back of a book isn’t enough to tell you it’s a story for you” and then you’re left with something you don’t want to read particularly but you have to because you feel obligated after paying for it.
“You could say it’s in my DNA” he commented with a light chuckle “Besides look how tall I am, my mom always said it never filled me up to even my knees” he grinned slightly because he knew that wasn’t how it worked but Leigh was 6ft tall and that generally meant he needed to put more into his body. “I hope so” he commented on her thoughts about there being someone to look out for him, perhaps there was a part of him that just wanted to mean something to someone, though he wouldn’t dare admit that out loud. Her comments about her brother made him nod a few times “Well that’s good, it’s awfully exhausting spending time being mad at people I find” he preferred to tend on the side of optimism where he could, forgive and move on where needed.
He laughed at the way she pretended she had any idea what he was talking about, he had to admit she was good at acting like she understood something when she didn’t but he knew her well enough by now to know when she was playing things off “True, though they’re mostly for decorative purposes I think” people wanted fancy records they could frame and put on walls he supposed, looked better than a CD. Her judging look made him grin sheepishly “Not sleeping, just resting until the customers come” he shook his head slightly, okay maybe there had been a few times where he full-on napped on the counter but that was rare. He could see there was a method to her madness with the sorting, she had made one for things they didn’t need for sure, one with interesting things that might actually have used and then what he assumed was a maybe pile.
“Yeah, I’m planning on taking at least two showers” who knew what other grimy stuff they were going to find this afternoon, though he had to admit with the first load of trash taken out the room the task was feeling slightly less daunting. He supposed the hardest part about things like this was getting started, once the ball was rolling it got much easier “Yeah in hindsight, probably should have hired a skip or something” he commented and bit his lip for a moment “For now we’ll load anything that won’t fit in the garbage into my truck and then I’ll drive it over to the dump later” seemed wise to do it all in one rather than make more trips than were necessary. “I’m not that great of a chess player” he commented with a laugh when she suggested he could be spending hours on it “Never really got into mobile games myself, except that one where you had to collect cats for a while” he laughed slightly “Phone always seems to give me headaches if I play for too long” he admitted and pressed his lips together.
They’d actually made some great progress already, Willow had sorted through a lot of things to keep, he had bagged up a lot of the trash and put it outside the back door ready to be taken over to his truck, they could actually see the floor at the moment but there were still shelves to clear in the room of doom as she quite eloquently put it. He coughed when she commented on the dents in the doorframe “I may have hit my head a few times” and by a few times he meant far too many times for his own good “Even then I’d probably still forget to read what’s right in front of me” he tossed another bad of trash outside and then got to work on bringing out the clutter from the bottom shelf “Of course not, you really think I’d spend my weekend on this just to let it fall back into disrepair” plus he could imagine how much Willow would nag about keeping it right.
“You know a customer came in the other day” if he could even call her a customer “And they got me thinking about the ways we could expand this place, we already serve tea from out back so I was thinking maybe we look into making that more official, sit down for a light bite to eat and a tea while reading a book kinda thing” he was curious to know what she thought considering she was the only other person who knew this business almost as well as he did.