Greg was sitting in his lawn chair outside of the carwash that he owned and worked at. He sat in the sun in his cut off jean shorts and his signature white tank top. He had a refreshing cold cola soda in his hands and enjoyed the hot summer air as he sat there until it was time to close the building.
He knew he probably wouldn't get any customers today, but hey he had to stay positive. So he sat there enjoying the nice weather while he sipped his drink every here and there.
Greg was kind of surprised when a truck pulled into the car wash parking lot. At first he assumed that it was a tourist lost and about to ask for directions to a different place. The truck pulled to a stop and the engine was cut off.
The door of the truck opened and a tall muscular burly man with red hair pulled back into a man bun with a red matching short mustache and beard much like Greg’s. He looked to be in his mid to late thirties, maybe even early forties. He wore dark blue denim jeans, a green plaid long sleeved shirt with the sleeves pulled up to his elbows revealing tattoo inked arms, and a white t shirt underneath his green plaid shirt. The man wore big black workers boots.
He walked towards Greg, as he got closer, Greg could see that he had piercing emerald eyes and a small scar underneath his left eye. He had an eyebrow piercing and slight freckles on his cheeks and nose. The man approached Greg with a polite, yet nervous and goofy smile.
“Hello sir, how may I help you today?” Greg asked politely as he stood from his seat.
“Are you perhaps still open or have you closed up for the day?” the man asked.
Greg had to admit the man seemed a tad bit intimidating when he first stepped out of his big silver truck but now that he was right in front of Greg, the man gave off a vibe he got from his son, Steven.
“Yes, I’m still open. Would you like a wash?” Greg asked.
The man nodded.
“Would you like the regular wash, the super wash, or the extreme wash?” Greg asked.
“Just a regular wash please, if you don’t mind.”
“I don’t mind at all” Greg said a bit too fast.
Greg felt his cheeks burn slightly in embarrassment.
The guy smiled goofily at Greg.
Greg immediately grabbed a bucket, filled it with water and soap, and a sponge. He rushed over to the burly man’s truck and quickly got to work, but made sure not to damage the truck in any way.
“So what’s your name? I’ve never seen you around before,” Greg asked as he soaped up the truck.
The man leaned into the truck’s drivers seat door, crossing his legs.
“Names Cliff Hernandez. I’m moving here soon, so I decided I would check out the place before I made my final decision. What’s your name?”
“Greg. Greg Universe. It’s nice to meet you Cliff.”
Cliff smiled at Greg in a warm and welcoming way that made Greg blush again. He began scrubbing frantically trying to calm his heartbeat.
“So do you live here in Beach City?” Cliff asked.
“Yeah” Greg said with a smile back.
“How is it? Do you like living here?” Cliff asked.
“Oh yeah. I love Beach City. I’ve been here ever since my first time visiting this place fourteen years ago. I found it to be a nice peaceful place with not too many people. Everyone here is pretty friendly.”
“What about it made you want to stay in general?” Cliff asked.
Greg’s first thought was Rose but he pushed that thought away and decided to mention all the other reasons besides Rose that made him wanna stay.
“At first it was little things like the scenery, the peacefulness, the friendly neighbors, the beach, the beach life in general. But now it’s a little different. My main reason is my son.”
“How old is your kid?” Cliff asked, watching as Greg continued to clean his truck.
“He just turned fourteen about two weeks ago today,” Greg said smiling.
Cliff noticed this and smiled at Greg.
“That’s nice Mr. Universe. I’ve always wanted a son, but I would probably have to adopt” Cliff said, looking down slightly embarrassed.
“Greg” Greg said.
“Huh?” Cliff asked.
“Call me Greg, Mr. Universe is my old stage name and it kind of makes me feel old rather than when I was young and going by that name.”
Cliff broke into a goofy smile.
“Stage name? Were you a rockstar?” Cliff asked wagging his eyebrows.
Greg blushed for the third time since the man arrived, man something was off about him today. why was he getting so flustered by this attractive man?
‘Wait, did I just think he was attractive?’ Greg thought to himself.
“Wow, a real rockstar” Cliff muttered looking awestruck.
“So umm, why can’t you have any kids of your own?” Greg asked as he continued to circle the truck, cleaning it to the best of his abilities.
“Oh um, yeah. I don’t swing that way if you know what I mean,” Cliff said with a nervous chuckle, rubbing the back of his neck.
“Hey that’s totally fine, nothing wrong with that” Greg said encouragingly.
There was a brief silence between them while Greg grabbed the hose and sprayed the soap down the truck’s body, creating large puddles underneath it.
Once Greg was done, he smiled at his work. Cliff had to admit he hadn’t thought he saw the outside if his car this clean since he bought it.
Both men turned to each other and Cliff opened his mouth to say something when suddenly there was a yell somewhere in the distance, not too far but not all that close either, but still loud enough to break both men’s attention away from each other and down the street.
“Dad!” Steven yelled waving his arm around as he got closer.
Cliff noticed that Greg’s smile seemed to have softened at the sight of this very short, small, young looking boy.
‘Wait did this boy just call Greg, dad? I thought Greg said his kid was fourteen? This kid doesn’t look an age over eight years old!’ Cliff thought to himself.
“Steven, what’s up buddy? I wasn’t expecting you for another couple of hours” Greg said when Steven was close enough.
“I couldnt wait any longer. I’m just so excited for our sleepover tonight.”
Steven noticed the stranger that was near Greg and Steven smiled toothily up at the big guy.
Steven cocked his head to the side and held out his hand to wave at the man.
Cliff smiled down at Steven.
“Why hello, you must be Steven. You look a lot like your father,” Cliff said, examining the similarities between the two.
“What’s your name?” Steven asked.
“Names Cliff, it was nice to meet you.”
Steven got stars in his eyes.
“Woah! That’s a super cool name!” Steven gushed.
Cliff laughed and Greg blushed slightly.
“So eh, I’m done washing your truck, Cliff.”
Cliff smiled over at Greg, reached in his back pocket and pulled out his wallet.
Greg was about to say his price when suddenly Cliff handed him a decent stack of bills.
“Wait, this looks like a lot” Greg started but Cliff held up a hand to stop Greg.
“Think of it as a token of appreciation. Thanks Greg. I’ll see you around sometime.”
With that Cliff got into his truck and was soon driving off down the road.
“That Cliff guy was really cool,” Steven said.
“Yeah, he was” Greg said with a slight blush covering his cheeks as he stared in the direction Cliff left in.