Of mice and men Chapter
The soft summer breeze tip toed through the tall wooden windows, causing ripples to emerge on the patriotic flag perched high above his desk. The boss observed his surroundings out of the windows. With every breath he took he inhaled the fresh blend of mahogany and polished oak along with the tiniest waft of hand crafted metals riding along the air from the various selections of rifles, each placed perfectly perpendicular to one another along each wall. The only sound that could be heard was the heavy velvet curtains rhythmically brushing against either side of the photo frames floating along the walls.
Suddenly an abrupt gust of cold wind slithered down the spine of the boss, however he refused to shiver it away. The high heels of Curley’s boots stomped through the soft slippery sand. Dust rose up from the ground as the rapid footsteps forged a pathway towards the boss’s office. The boss sat down on his padded leather chair and waited, his eyes resting on the door in front of him. The light shining through the small outline of the door disappeared for a moment. BANG! Curley’s heavy boots landed on the wooden floor. The sand tried to follow him into his dad’s office but the door had swung shut.
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“Take-off-your-shoes.” whispered the stern boss rhythmically. “Never enter my office with dirty feet, do you understand?” Curley’s lips parted but then closed again as he reluctantly removed his filthy boots. “Good, now sit down.”
Curley obliged and sunk into the chair facing his father. “Candy told me you wanted to see to me.” Curley kept his eyes away from his fathers gaze as he already knew the reason for which his father had hunted him down for.
The boss tilted his chair forwards a little. “Tell me boy, what happened to your hand?”
Curley looked up nervously. “What do you mean? I already told you what happened; I got it..I got it caught in a machine!”
“Yeah a machine.”
Curley’s hands became entangled and his speech began to falter. “Oh there was a lump of mud in the blades of the cultivator so I tried getting it out but the god damn monster fired up while my hand was still in there!” Curley’s eyes met with his fathers for a brief moment but the boss’s cold stare sliced Curley wide open. “I was lucky it didn’t get cut off!”
The boss was not convinced. “Listen son, don’t lie to me.”
Curley was aware that his reputation being at stake. Although he did not want to admit it, he had been made to look like a fool. His fist’s began to clench as Lennie’s face appeared in Curley’s mind. “Bloody hell Dad, why can’t you just believe me for once! Ask Candy or Crooks or George...or Lennie. They were all there,” Curley said, raising his voice slightly and was on the each of the chair with his fists still clenched.
The boss frowned, “now look, I wasn’t insinuating that anything had happened. I was just...”
“...no you was trying to get involved in my business, just like you always do...”
“...don’t you dare speak to me in that tone!” shouted the Boss. The Boss was on his feet, gliding towards the window facing the farm. “You wanna stay on this ranch or not? You think there aren’t any other ranch workers out there?”
Curley sank back into the chair. “No...no I wanna stay here,” he replied, taking a more cautious approach this time.
“What happened to your hand,” said the Boss.
Curley looked up to find his Dad glaring down upon him with his hands placed behind his back. He knew it was impossible to hide anything from him, he would find out one way or another. Curley sighed, “I came into the bunk house the other day and Lennie, the new guy, started trying to mouth off to me so I warned him not to mess with me but then he grabbed my hand out of nowhere and just squeezed. I didn't have any time to react otherwise I would have beat the hell outta him!”
The Boss walked over to the window facing the bunk house. “So he thinks he can do whatever he likes in my farm does he, well he’s got things all wrong! Bring him to me,” demanded the Boss.
Curley jumped out of his seat, “no please, don’t do anything to them!”
The Boss swiveled around. “You don’t want everyone knowing you got beat up do you,” declared the Boss. “My own son can’t even stand up for himself and doesn’t have the guts to tell me he lost. Your pathetic!”
Curley’s eyes remained fixated on his toes. He blinked.
“Get out,”said the boss.
Curley’s boots thudded along the long cold grass. As he looked up he watched the suns rays being hijacked by the grey clouds. The last few glimmers of sunlight vanished and suddenly the ranch looked eerie and dull. A raindrop shot out onto a dried up twig and shattered into oblivion. The Boss took one last glimpse at his son and then drew the velvet curtains, making him oblivious to the rain.
Davinder Bassan 10T