5.57: Open for Business

I never thought it was possible to feel so happy and excited and exhausted all at once… What a day!

It’s finally official — The Corner Kitchen is open for business! (I know, I know… I’m not crazy about the name either, but Greg says people love that alliteration crap).

I was so nervous this morning… I felt like I was gonna be sick. My hands were basically shaking the whole drive there. I’m surprised I didn’t end up swerving off the road or something! And when I got there, I was almost afraid I was gonna pass out or puke or BOTH (thank GOD I didn’t… Could you imagine?!)

I still can’t figure out if having my family there made me feel better or worse (Tante Joce literally ordered TWO desserts, just as an excuse to hang around longer… It was so embarrassing!) But either way, I was so grateful they all came. Their support means everything to me.

And I was even grateful to the ones who couldn’t make it too. Alex and I talked on the phone for like an hour last night, and Tony had this huge, beautiful bouquet of flowers delivered to the restaurant this morning. It was really awesome of them.

I woke up to a really sweet Facebook message from Hope too. She told me how much she wishes she could be here, and how proud she is of me. I couldn’t stop smiling when I read it. It was really great feeling like so many people were supporting me today.

Greg was swamped with meetings, so he couldn’t be there for the grand opening… And I guess in a way that actually helped. It kinda took some of the pressure off, since Greg can be… Y’know. Greg. He’s not going to be very involved in day-to-day stuff anyway. It’ll just be me and Caitlin, our manager, calling the shots.

We made a pretty good team today, I think. The whole staff was a little nervous, but we pulled it off well. We had a few little bumps, but nothing huge. I think our biggest setback was when we ran out of olive oil… You wouldn’t think that’d be such a big deal, but we use it in like half the stuff on the menu! Our shipment got delayed and it won’t be in til Monday, so we’re gonna have to do lots of improvising… But I’ve always loved doing stuff like that, so I’m not too worried.

We only had one bitchy customer complain all day, and it was about how long it took us to bring her her appetizer (which honestly wasn’t as outrageously long as she made it out to be… but ‘the customer is always right’, I guess). We were able to calm her down by taking it off her bill, so no harm done, I don’t think. Considering the hundreds of happy customers we got, I’d say one complaint isn’t half bad!

Overall it went really, really well… Better than I was expecting for sure! To be honest, it didn’t feel that much different from my old job at the Bistro. Except this time it was me calling all the shots in the kitchen instead of Denise… Which felt amazing!

It was just so exhausting. That was probably the hardest part.

It’s been over a year since I quit my old job, so it’s not gonna be easy getting used to being on a schedule and stuff again. Not being able to sleep in anymore, not working whatever hours I want, not having Netflix playing in the background while I’m getting work done in my pajamas… I guess part of me will miss that. Who wouldn’t?

But it’s worth it. It felt so good to be out there today working hard and being back in the kitchen again. It’s like I’m finally doing something with my life, y’know?

It may not be exactly what I’d imagined… Greg’s talked me into a lot of ‘compromise’, as he calls it. But it’s still so much better than what I had before. Better than I ever thought I’d have.

And I’m so grateful that tomorrow morning, I get to wake up and do it all over again.


44 thoughts on “5.57: Open for Business

    1. Hahahahaha! Is this the next step from shipping Joce with the back of Mark’s head? Now we ship Zayne with any female name that’s mentioned? 😛

      (I know, I know, people are antsy for Zayne to procreate hehe. Eventually!)

      Liked by 4 people

  1. Take it slow, Zayne. If Greg gets too much, tell him what you think of him. Save some money though just in case, you can then just give it too him and tell him where the door is. I’m even more proud. On the partner front, take as long as you need, it’s got to be the right time for you. Glad, that Hope too is proud of you.:)

    I think Zayne just took another step on the road of life. I’m glad he went right when he was given the option on where to go in life. It took him a while but this is a big step. As for netfix, plenty of time for that at home. 😉

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hehe yes, Zayne can still relax with Netflix after a long day at work! 😛 I think that advice is good — hopefully he won’t let Greg walk all over him! (And hopefully Greg will start easing up too!)

      Definitely a really big step in the right direction for Zayne! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yep. Greg has already got quite the hate-club, he’s best off easing up before one of your readers decides he needs a lesson on how to relax. Tell Zayne from me, if Greg gets too bossy, set his Tante Joce on him. Might make him less bossy.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I thought the same thing as Senna – if the blond was Caitlin, the back of her was cute! Maybe. And I spied Fangs for the Memories! Lol. Heck, I was shipping Jocelyn and Mark before we saw him too!

    So about Zayne, it was refreshing to see him happy for a change and not whining about how life has mistreated him. Huge steps forward. Of course I should probably wait for more than one day to see if he will continue the forward momentum or if he slides backwards the minute he is thrown a curve ball. If he can handle adversity better than he has in the past, he will be ready to fall in love and have a healthy relationship be it with Caitlin, Hope or anyone else for that matter. For once I am not mad at Zayne. I am proud of him. 😁

    Liked by 3 people

    1. “For once I am not mad at Zayne. I am proud of him.”

      Do my eyes deceive me?! 😛

      Time will tell what curveballs he may or may not face, and how he may deal with them 😉 So amused that we have another… Zaytlin (?) shipper! 😛 You guys seriously crack me up! Hehe

      Liked by 2 people

      1. No deception here only praise for sucking it up and taking control of his life. 🤗 He is no longer trying to prove anything to anyone, but just doing it for himself. See how much happier he is now! I really like this side of him. But I am afraid it might be short lived…I really hope not. 😔

        Liked by 2 people

  3. My thoughts:

    I don’t trust Greg. I feel like he’s going to really screw over Zayne. But at least Zayne gets some happiness from this, so that’s good.

    I wonder who Zayne is going to be with, y’know, to spawn and stuff. I can’t get past Hope, but there haven’t really been any women around, besides Caitlyn, and it’s way too early to jump to conclusions.

    Great chapter, though, Citizen! It’s a nice break from the drama, but probably setting Zayne up for a lot more. Poor boy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Onyx! It definitely sounds like Zayne will have to watch himself around Greg… We’ll see what happens! And as for who will be the mother of our next heir, well… we still need to wait a bit to find out 😉

      Glad you enjoyed this happy chapter! 😀


    1. Hahaha the SS Zaytlin is gaining a lot of crew members today (and we don’t even know what she looks like or what her personality is like! :P)

      Time will tell whether or not it’s what Zayne was hoping it would be 😉 Thanks for reading!

      Liked by 2 people

        1. Oh, agreed – seeing as how I have no idea what this Caitlin person even looks like, I’m definitely rooting more for Hope and Zayne… that said – as sweet as they were, their relationship was, unfortunately, quite toxic – they may be better off as friends. Granted, I have no idea the extent of therapy that Zayne has been through, but who knows what Hope’s up to now? It’s quite possible she could have moved on as well (at the moment it seems like Zayne has, but who knows?).

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Their relationship was definitely bordering on toxic, but they’ve both changed a lot since then too. They may be better off as friends, but there might still be a chance for them to reconcile too… very open right now!

            We still haven’t seen Hope or how she’s doing, you’re right! That might give more insight into where things stand between the two of them… we’ll see!


  4. I’ve worked in retail before. The customer is basically never right, factually speaking, and that goes double for any customer that can be described as ‘bitchy’.

    Wayne probably needs to have the family lawyer look over that business contract. I’m foreseeing uneven profit sharing and all debts in Zayne’s name…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yeah, I have a part-time retail job (in addition to my normal fulltime one) and SO TRUE about those awful customers… ugh!

      Hopefully whatever business agreement Zayne and Greg have is something fair for both of them!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Considering Zayne’s hothead trait the bitchy customer was pretty lucky not to end up with the apetizer on her head.
    It’s nice to see him finally taking control of his life again. The Corner Kitchen? I’m sure it becomes Zayne’s Kitchen in no time.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hahaha thankfully Zayne has gotten much better at controlling his temper! And yes, hopefully Zayne can leave his mark on that kitchen 😉


  6. I love how much support Zayne is getting from his family. But maybe Joce simply loved the food- why assume she was being overprotective again… 😉
    I’m going to feel stupid if Zayne and Caitlin become a thing, I didn’t catch it at all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha I think it might have been a little bit of both with Joce 😉

      And don’t worry too much about Zayne and Caitlin… We don’t even know anything about her haha 😛

      Liked by 1 person

  7. *On board the HoZay Repair Submarine*


    “but Captain, what if he did and she didn’t…you know, want to go?”

    Shut up! This isn’t boding well, shipmates. Not one bit! They are talking about this Caitlin-woman now! THEY HAVE A SHIP NAME! It’s being built while our ship is being repaired!!! We must stop this!!!

    “At least we saw a nod to Fangs for the Memories”

    *Nods* Yes, that was really nice. Though it wasn’t of Byron.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahahaha Sorry that Hope wasn’t there for the grand opening! I think it was a combo of Hope’s very busy schedule (don’t forget that she lives on the other side of the world now!) and Zayne not wanting to overstep the boundaries of their newly re-forming friendship 🙂 Don’t worry too much about Caitlin though. People are a little overzealous 😉

      Glad you enjoyed the sneaky Fangs nod! 😉 We got to see Byron back when Hope and Zayne were watching with her parents, so I decided to mix it up this time hehehe


  8. Whoooo! The restaurant is open for business!

    I’m so fucked that love oil is what they ran out of. Who’s on ordering supplies duty?? That’s like running out of salt or sugar, lol. Someone couldn’t run to Sam’s Club?

    I’m glad his family was there to support. And I’m really glad he had so many customers on opening day.

    I’m hoping we hear a bit more about his compromises with Greg soon. And I hope they’re not as ominous as they sound.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. “Love oil” is the best autocorrect I have ever seen… LMAO


      I think it was an issue with the supplier, rather than within the restaurant… Hopefully they were able to buy some last-minute or get creative 😉

      It was a very successful opening, with lots of support for Zayne ❤ There will be more to come on the Greg-front over the next few chapters. Stay tuned! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Hope will come back. Stay away from the other women, Zayne. Hope will be back. Modelling careers are famous for being short lived. Once her time is done, she’ll be coming home where she belongs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love your optimism 🙂 it’s true that model’s careers don’t tend to be very long. We’ll have to wait and see whether that’s true for Hope too 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Wait, I just realized something, Zayne had slept with Hope before she got away…Amd up until now, nothing about a baby came up…?So I guess either she was not pregnant or, someday, Zayne will hear a doorbell, and a little girl will be there, saying: ”Daddy!” Now, about the kitchen corner…how wonderful, Zayne! Finally leting things go, you are a happy, everything is great! wait, that means….*Dramtically turns to CitizenErased14* Oh, things are going down, aren’t they…?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahahahaha! I can confirm for you that Hope was never pregnant 🙂 She 100% would have told Zayne the moment she found out, if she was! 🙂


  11. So happy that he is finally on the path to doing something with his life. This guy Greg worries me though 🤔. But I’m excited about him and Hope talking again. She will visit soon, I just know it (I’m trying to repair my cracks with optimism) 👍🏽

    Liked by 1 person

  12. As a poet, I am definitely a fan of alliteration XD
    Aww, this is nice! I’m hoping this is the upswing. Your stories go in a patterns of upswings and downswings so maybe we’re getting back to the up?

    Liked by 1 person

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