Micky spent the rest of the day—after stocking up on what halfway edible snacks there were in the vending machines in the motel lobby—sitting on his bed munching on them while watching TV. He tracked every local newscast, uncertain if he was relieved or disappointed that there was no mention of someone attempting to kill Gary. He realized—again—that he should call work, but what could he tell them? That he'd be gone for the foreseeable future? His boss's response would be that he was fired. After all, Micky was just a waiter, albeit in a nice restaurant, and waiters were a dime a dozen.
By the time late afternoon rolled around, Micky was sick of crappy snacks and bored out of his mind.
"I need real food," he muttered. "And a new phone. One of those, what do they call them? Throwaways? And a few clothes would be nice."
He remembered, from the last time he'd stayed at the motel, there was a thrift shop somewhere close by. And the area was full of fast food joints as well. Figuring if someone was after him, it was still light enough out they wouldn't do anything drastic, he stuffed Gary's wallet in his pocket and took off—carefully, of course, checking the balcony and the parking lot again before scurrying, shoulders hunched, to the alley. He scuttled down it until he came to the last building, then cut across behind the building and two others, always alert for anyone who might be interested in him. Finally, clenching his hands, he eased down a cut-through to the street.
The thrift store was where he remembered. Trying to appear casual, he walked the half-block to it and was inside seconds later.
"Can I help you find something?" an older woman at the counter asked.
She pointed to the far side of the store. He discovered when he got there that there wasn't much to choose from. Still, he managed to find two pair of decent jeans, a couple of T-shirts, and a regular shirt. Then he spotted the sweatshirts. Going through them, he found a hooded one that would fit and added it to his pile. As he started to the counter, he saw underwear. While he wasn't exactly thrilled by the idea of wearing someone's cast-off briefs, he picked up three pair and some socks. The last thing he got was a backpack. When he paid for everything, he folded all the clothes except the hoodie, putting them in the pack. The hoodie he put on. Then, slinging the pack over his shoulders, he took off to find somewhere to eat, feeling marginally safer now.
As he passed a convenience store, he remembered he needed a new phone. He went in, found one that was cheap enough and didn't require a contract. Paying for it and a two hundred minute card, he pocketed it and moved on to the burger place two doors down.
While he stood surveying the menu on the board behind the counter, he wondered yet again if he was being overly paranoid. After all, if the guy somehow was able to track me by my old phone, wouldn't he have shown up long before now? I would have, if I was him. Take out the problem and move on. Obviously he has no compunction about killing someone—or trying to. Still, I'm not going back to my place until the end of the week, come hell or high water.
He was at the front of the line by then and ordered a burger, fries, and coffee. After picking up his order, he found a table and sat to eat. He realized as he did, whether from instinct or something else, he'd gone to one well away from the front windows. He chuckled softly. I'm turning into a superspy.
Finishing his meal, he stepped outside of the restaurant and saw it was beginning to get dark. That sent a shiver of fear up his spine. He stood where he was, trying to be covert as he looked at the people on the sidewalk. No one seemed to be paying any attention to him, so he stiffened his back and strode off, away from the direction of the motel. Just in case. Because who knows who could be watching that I'm not seeing.
Twenty minutes late, having taken a very circuitous route, he arrived back at his room. After unpacking the backpack and putting the clothes away, he settled on the bed, turned on the TV and found an old sitcom to watch.