The light shone in the male’s eyes as he rolled over and moaned. It was so early and he needed to be up but he didn’t want to be awake. BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! He groaned as he hit his alarm of the side table. Lifting his head looked up and sighed. Rolling over slightly he sat up and moved to the side of his bed. Rubbing his eyes his ears perked up as he began waking up. He shook his head and yawned. With a stretched as he picked up the alarm clock. Getting off his bed he walked to his cupboard and looked though his clothes. He grabbed a soft violet shirt with a ruffled neck piece and a black patterned waist coat which matched his trousers. Walking with the items he lay them down on his bed and walked towards the bathroom. The shower curtain was shut which confused him. The water was running to. ”Hello?” he called out gently and he hear a growl. ”ORLANDO GET OUT!” a female voice screamed loudly which cause him to almost trip over as he left the bathroom. Once the door was closed he whipped his face and sighed he forgot he had Nina stopping over.
When she was finished she frowned. Her blond hair soaked and she was wrapped in his dressing gowned. ”I’m sorry I didn’t mean to walk in I forgot” she shrugged and she smirked. She walked to the spare room and walked into the shower, once washed he walked to his room and changed into his clothes.
Time passed and he was in his car. He was a little nervous starting his new managing job at the café. It wasn’t as big as when he was working at the Bank. He was only twenty and was the youngest there and most likely one of the older ones at the café. Sighing, he soon got to town and parked behind the café. It was about 7:00AM and the shop didn’t open to 7:45AM. He got into the office and met the manager that was leaving. ”You must be Mr Jacobs” he chuckled and shook the man’s hand. ”It’s nice to meet you Mr Onno” he said shaking his hand he soon let go and lead him around the shop. It took a while to understand the ins and outs what Mr Onno spoke about. The workers arrived and he greeted everyone, Mr Onno introducing them to him first anyway.
☼ There was a soft buzzing that invaded his dreams and he curled up into a tight ball, trying to will away the insistent buzzing. He just wanted to sleep the day away, why did his alarm insist he had to wake up and go to work? What did it want from him? With a soft gasp the jackalope sat up and grabbed his oval-shaped glasses from his bedside, bolting out of his bed soon after. He pulled out a white long-sleeved, button up shirt and rusted-red pants and tie, which he lay down on his bed, being careful not to wrinkle the fabric, before he moved into his bathroom for a quick shower. Once he got out, Zeno returned his glasses to his face and ran a brush through his wild, fluffy hair, not even bothering to try to tame it, while he opened draws under his sink in search for his contacts, so he wouldn’t have to wear his glasses, he hated them. However he was forced to wear the corrective lenses when he looked up at his clock and saw he had about twenty minutes to finish getting dressed and get to work.
Ten minutes later, the blonde was dressed and running out of his apartment, down the stairs and onto the street, thank god he lived on the same street as the cafe, or he really would be late. Bursting through the back door he grabbed a apron from a hook by the door, the same rusty red as his tie and slacks, and pulled it over his head, being careful not to catch it on his antlers, before tying the string behind his back. “Sorry I’m late Mister Onna. I lost my contacts and had to dig around for my glasses, or I’d have been blind.” A small lie, but it wouldn’t hurt anyone. He turned to smile apologetically at the manager and noticed another man with him, a black-haired catboy. “Oh, is this the new manager?”☼
”I thought about doing the place up but we didn’t have the money and well they wouldn’t help” Mr Onna laughed and Orlando chuckled lightly until they heard the bell go off at the door. They both turned as the male began to speak. He was incredibly cute. It was like he had bunny rabbit ears and then deer antlers. Interesting. Maybe a hybrid of breeds but Orlando knew he never saw a person like it. His tail flicked around as he was curious about the male but then hear him speak. When he mentioned him Orlando smiled handsomely. ”I am. Orlando Jacobs but please call me Orlando” he said with a smirk as he shook the other males hand. ”I think you should stay with the glasses. They suit you” he chuckled and let go of the man’s hand. ”So Onna?” he turned and walked away from the male to the other dog male. ”About the decorating” he chuckled as Mr Onna nodded and the two walked into the office.
☼ Zeno had the urge to slap the new manager as he looked at him, that curious expression on his face, like he was a cute, interesting animal. He sure many people might not have seen a jackalope before, much less one that merely had the antlers and ears, but his species wasn’t that rare that no one knew they existed. But Zeno knew better than to actually hit this cat-eared man, he quite liked his job and would prefer not to get fired for physically assaulting his new boss. Still, it didn’t mean he still didn’t want to do it. “Zeno, Zeno Dowele. I’m one of the baristas and I make most of the baked goods.” He spoke with a forced smile.
The jackalope scowled slightly when Orlando said he should stick with the glasses because they suited him. Of course he would think more on the style then the practicality, the way he was dressed, all ruffles and a waistcoat of all things, plus he was a cat and they were always fussing with their appearances. “It doesn’t matter about how they look, they get in the way. The lenses fog up every time I make any hot drinks or get something from the oven.” Not to mention when he was mixing batter or kneading dough, if they slide down and he had to readjust them, he ended up with goo all over them, yet another way to blind him.
On that thought, he had to actually go make the cakes and such he was meant to, and he left for the kitchen, presetting the ovens to the right temperature for whatever he would be baking in them. With that done, he set to work mixing up different batters for cakes, muffins and doughs for cookies ☼
”Right then I will draw up a plan. I know a lot of men and women that would help out and won’t stop the business carrying on” Orlando chuckled as Onna seemed please. ”GREAT!” he said with excitement as they both stood. ”I know I am no longer the manager but do you mind if I come back. Check on the staff and the progress?” he asked as Orlando nodded. ”Of course you can” he said walking the man out the room and then to the door. ”I will be glad to hear off you” he said to Onno as he nodded and left. With a sigh he turned to make some phone calls but a little sheep girl was in front of him gazing at him. ”Er… Are you okay?” he asked as she nervously nodded. ”I’m okay. I’m Yuna” she giggled and ran off towards the kitchen. With a chuckle he took out his cell phone and began making phone calls to most of the important people he know.
As customers walked in Orlando served with another member of staff quickly. He was used to fast pace and thankfully at lunch it was over by about 1:00PM, faster than before. ”Have you done this before Orlando?” another dog female asked fluttering her eyes. ”When I was eleven my father had a restaurant and I worked there. It was busy and we went through about 700 people a day. Maybe even more” laughed Orlando as his phone began to ring.
☼ Zeno hummed softly as he poured some batter into a few greased muffin pans, before he scooped up some eggs to crack them into a waiting bowl of flour, sugar and pieces of crushed hazelnuts and chunks of chocolate, the beginnings of cookie dough. He caught sight of the little sheep, Yuna, and turned to her. “Sweetie, could you slide the cupcakes and muffins into the ovens for me? They’re going in the usual ones.” He had marked each oven with a number and the trays and pans with the numbers of the oven he would put them in. After his friend had nodded her enthusiastic response, the blonde gave her a quick hug, in thanks and greeting, being sure to keep his batter covered hands away from her clothes and hair, before he went back to mixing the dough for the cookies.
Thirty minutes later, enough time for all the baking treats to be cooked all the way through and to ice and decorate the cupcakes, Zeno exited the kitchen balancing trays of goods, Yuna in tow with trays of her own. “Make way, sweet stuff coming through.” The rabbit-eared male set the trays down, before he started to push them into the display cases, his glasses sliding down his nose until they were dangerously close to slipping off entirely.
When the crowds started to rush in, Zeno returned with Yuna to the kitchen to replenish the treats that were quickly being depleted and he came back out again just in time to hear Orlando talk about how his father had had a restaurant and he made a soft noise in the back of his throat. “We get really busy here. I think it’s because of the wi-fi, personally” As he spoke he put the trays he had brought with him into the display case. ☼
Looking at the male speak he chuckled. ”Of course people love this kind of stuff” he said going back to the phone. ”Right hour okay thank you” he said softly and closed his cell. Sighing softly he took the last cookie and smirked as he sat down with a chuckle. ”I like the busy life style” he shrugged at the Jakalope. Biting into the cooking and nodded. ”Nice” he chuckled until the Dog female giggled. ”What were you doing before this Orlando?” she asked softly as he continued eating the cookie. Coughing lightly he swallowed and sighed. ”I had three jobs. I was a bank manager, an accountant and I still worked at my fathers restaurant I helped the head chefs” he said bluntly. The girl was a little gobsmacked. He smirked and slapped his hands to get the crumbs off his hand looking straight at Zeno. ”Zeno. Was it? Can you tell me everything you bake, cook and make?” he asked bluntly.
☼ Zeno rolled his rust-red eyes and nudged his glasses up to their proper place on his face as they began to slip down yet again. “See, I told you Yuna.” The words were ended with him sticking his tongue out at his friend and he reached out to take the last cookie on the tray to put it with the rest of the treats, only for Orlando to take it and start nibbling it. The jackalope huffed slightly. “Those are for the customers.” Really, they weren’t meant to eat the merchandise, it lessened the revenue they would get at the end of the day, but he wasn’t going to rouse on the neko beyond what he had already said, since he was the new manager.
He grumbled softly to himself when Orlando said what he had done for work previously. Those were some damn good jobs there, and he suspected with the fact his daddy owned a restaurant and how well he was dressed he might be at least a little wealth. Damn rich kids taking jobs from people that actually needed them. Zeno stopped his grumbling when Orlando asked him what he made, blinking slightly. “Hmm, let’s see. I made that cookie you ate. As I said, I make most of the baked goods. The only thing I don’t is the savoury muffins, Yuna makes the ones with cheese and herbs and stuff in them.” He ran a hand through his hair and stood with a soft sigh. “In other words, if it’s sweet, I made it.”☼
Orlando sighed at the male. When he spoke about what he cooked he sighed once more. ”Cheer up” he moaned putting his hand in his pocket and walked to the till. He put the money in there and glared at the cute male. ”Look I’m a customer now” he chuckled and wondered about the food. ”I’m thinking we would get more people in if we made savoury food. Like the elderly love having breakfasts in the cafes around here. I know the wi-fi bring in kids but during the day they bring out business people. They are hungry” he smiled and looked at the others. ”I’m think sandwiches and with the savoury muffins we will expand” he smirked and took a breath. ”Anyway. I’m going to make some phone calls. Bye” he said bluntly walking to the Office in the back and shut the door. Shaking his head he sat down.
☼ Zeno huffed and crossed his arms over his chest. No, he would not cheer up, there was nothing wrong with his mood. If he wanted to cheer up, he would bloody well cheer up. Stupid cat telling him how to feel, if he tried to force emotions on him, he’d punch him in the face, needing this job be damned, he would punch the damn feline in his damn face. However, he did let out a pleased hum when Orlando put the money for the cookie in the till, pleased he was paying for it.
Zeno buried his face in his hands, pushing his glasses up into his hair, when Orlando talked about hiring new people to make sandwiches and expand the business. God, he didn’t want any new co-workers, he wasn’t good with new people, the reason he had been so snappy with the cat so far, that and the fact he had gotten on the jackalope’s ‘not happy at’ list by looking at him the way he had when he had introduced himself. Once the cat had excused himself, Zeno started to walk towards the kitchen, waving at Yuna to get her attention before removing his apron and hanging it up. “I’m taking my lunchbreak, I’ll be back in a half hour.” Knowing the sheep-girl, she’d tell the new boss not to take offense to his moodiness, that he didn’t mean it and just needed to warm up to him, like she had done with several new people. If he didn’t care for his friend so much, he’d call her a meddling brat. ☼
Sitting in his room he put the phone down with a smirk, when his door knocked he was curious who was behind it. "Come in" he said as he saw a short sheepish female walk in. He chuckled as she walked over not making eye contact with him. "Yuna? Isn't it. Have a seat my dear" he said with a smile as she nodded and sat down. He looked at the short blonde women and wondered what she was going to say, she seemed so nervous. "Mr Jacobs" she said looking up but he smiled. "Orlando dear. Call me Orlando" he said softly as she nodded. "Orlando. I apologies for Zeno, his not used to meeting new people. He is normally moody to everyone but me" she giggled as she looked into the males eyes. "That is no excuse Yuna" he said sitting up and crossed his arms like a professional at his job. "He needs to learn to be social this is a social job and if he can't do it. I will find someone else" he said bluntly as he walked round to the girl as she tried to say excuses. "No. I will talk to him. I know he doesn't like me but i don't really care" he chuckled tapping her shoulder and then headed out. He would go threaten this male if he needed to.
When he walked out he looked around and sniffed the air. He had a strong nose and well Zeno had a unique smell. Walking towards the back of the cafe he opened the door and looked around. His tail flicked when he noticed the males antlers. "Mr Dowele. I'm offend you would eat out here than in our cafe" he chuckled closing the door and walked over to the male who was sitting eating his food. He leant down with a smile as his tail slowly waged as he spoke.
☼ Zeno leant against the wall outside the cafe on the other side of the dumpster so he couldn’t be seen straight away when someone came out the back, they’d have to either find him by scent or spot his antlers. He slid down the wall until he was sitting on the ground and began to unwrap the sandwich he had brought with him, ham, cheese, tomato and lettuce, before bringing it up to his mouth to take a large bite, chewing and swallowing with a pleased hum, he enjoyed his lunchbreak. While he adored his lamby friend, he just couldn’t stand the other employees for the whole day, the reason he had practically banished everyone else from the kitchen and took his breaks separate from the others.
He groaned and only barely resisted the urge to throw his sandwich at Orlando. Couldn’t the damn cat just leave him be for five minutes? He just wanted to eat his sandwich and calm down enough to be able to get through the day without snapping to badly at someone. “I’m eating out here because I want to be alone.” He took a bite from his sandwich, the action almost hostile and pointed a finger at the feline after he had swallowed the mouthful of food. “If you want anything can it wait until my break is over?” He just wanted to be left in peace. ☼
Hearing him speak Orlando frowned. He wasn't happy the way he was speaking to him. With a big sigh he crossed his arms and shook his head. "Fine"he growled as he looked at the male with a evil smirk. "After your lunch Zeno i would like to speak to you in my office. Straight away" he snapped his tail going mad as he walked off. He couldn't believe how rude he was towards him. Did he not think he could loose his job? Did he knew Orlando will make him feel miserable? Slamming the door as he walked back in his office Yuna a bit worried as she walked into the kitchen waiting for Zeno. Orlando sat in his office a bit angry how then male could pay for upsetting him.
☼ Zeno sighed once Orlando was gone and buried his face in his knees, his long bunny ears pressed back. Great, he had pissed his new boss off now and he was sure to fire him, stupid rich cat, not knowing how stressful it was to actually need to work for a living. He wished Mister Onno was still around, he actually got along okay with him, he understood that the jackalope got a bit grumpy sometimes and actually left him alone during his lunchbreak.
Twenty minutes later Zeno had finished his sandwich and his break time was over, forcing him to have to go back inside. As soon as he entered the kitchen Yuna came over and started to flutter around him, asking what he had done to make their boss so annoyed to have slammed the door, but the rabbit-eared male raised a hand and shook his head, telling her silently that he didn’t want to talk right now and might tell her later. He reached the office and knocked twice on the wood. “Mister Jacobs, it’s Zeno.” ☼