The office was quiet. The morning was easing itself towards daytime and people were getting into a nice rhythm of work. Sara was cutting swathes through her tasks and sipping on her coffee when she realized she was beginning to feel a bit peckish. She had already eaten the snack she had brought with her to stave off exactly this situation, but obviously it hadn’t worked.
She looked at the digital clock in the corner of her computer screen. It was just over an hour to lunch, so she should be able to last it out. She continued with her work and sipping on her coffee. Maybe that would fool her stomach into feeling full.
Then the rumbles began. They were light at first, and easy to ignore, but quickly gained in intensity – and volume. The office was still silent, with nothing louder than mouse clicks and tapping keyboards to be heard. There was still another 40 minutes to get through until lunchtime.
Sara began to get nervous. Her stomach felt as if it was about to eat itself out of hunger. One quite audible discontented grumble escaped from it, and Sara blanched in embarrassment. She began to type more vigorously on her keyboard, hoping her colleagues had not heard. But they seemed to have gone even quieter now, as if listening to see what other noises would emanate from her rebellious body.
She knew a really big rumble was on the way, like that massive earthquake that would inevitably hit the San Andreas fault, some day. Instinctively, she held her breath – even though she knew that made absolutely no difference at all. And she was beginning to shake from the combination of tension and dropping sugar levels.
Desperately, she glanced at the packed lunch she had brought with her. Should she start her lunch early, and seem greedy? Or if she had her lunch early, would she then just have the same problems in the afternoon? She could probably have lunch half an hour early, but it was still 15 minutes until even that point.
Then one of her colleagues got up and started moving around the office. He seemed restless too, and muttered under his breath about it being “too damn quiet in this effing place”. The silence was broken. More people began to shift around, some small murmurings could be heard and a bit of bustle could be sensed.
Sara relaxed a little, knowing her stomach rumbles would no longer echo around the room. As she did so, the hunger pangs began to ease, and Sara relaxed even further. Eventually, the official lunchtime had rolled around and Sara realized that not only had she lasted the distance, she wasn’t even hungry any more.
Inspired by: Daily Prompt