The day was hot. Then again, Robin hadn't experienced one day of this summer in Orlando that had been cold. She reached up and scratched at the hat that was perched and pinned on top of her short blonde curls. It was just making her even hotter, causing a bead of sweat to drip down her neck slowly. Her glasses had begun to slip down her nose, and she made a mental note to invest in the contact industry very soon. Working at Universal Studios in the summer was obviously going to be warm and monotonous, and Robin wanted to make it as easy on herself as possible.
Of course, the Butterbeer stand had been immensely popular all day. The lines had hardly gone down at all. Robin's right arm was getting tired of pulling down the lever to get the golden, icy mixture to pour into the cups of the eager customers. She had had two glasses of the stuff herself to try and cool down, but the relief it gave her was temporary and she hardly had time to drink it anyway. A sigh escaped her as she filled yet another souvenir cup with the sugary beverage. She then transferred it with a falsely cheerful smile to a fat little boy who had already been to the little stand four times that day.
It was times like these that she had to remember what she was there for. College at the University of Florida was expensive, and the scholarships that were supposed to pay for all of her tuition were hardly covering even half anymore. This job would bring a relatively good amount of money into her possession, and along with what her parents were sending her she might be able to live her junior year comfortably. A more genuine smile touched her lips as she thought of school, and friends, and everything she was working for.
Suddenly, a strange, foreign thought entered her head. She had been getting these a lot lately; it seemed as though thoughts or images from outside of her were being projected into her mind. Just yesterday, she had seen a credit card that wasn't hers, and the thought seemed tinged with worry. A woman had then stepped up to the front of the line, fidgeting nervously, and had ordered a butterbeer for her daughter. When Robin had run her card, it looked eerily similar to the one she had seen in her mind... And the card had been rejected due to insufficient funds. These things had been happening for two years now, but only recently they had begun to increase in frequency.
What she saw this time seemed to be a set of two things that seemed odd paired together: a rose and a blue box. Robin's head snapped to the left, and saw perhaps the strangest thing she had ever seen. It was common for people to dress up when traveling to the "Wizarding World of Harry Potter," but usually they were wearing some garb that pertained to the book series upon which the park was based. This man, however... He was wearing a strange coat-type thing (which she couldn't imagine wearing in this heat), some pants rolled up to his knees, a bolo tie, and sandals. His hair was a sandy blonde and it fell to almost his shoulders. He looked young, perhaps in his thirties... But then he looked toward Robin and she gasped. His golden eyes seemed old, timeless, and sad. So sad and ageless that she couldn't help but stare and wonder at the things this man had seen.
"Um... Miss..." A voice from behind her had spoken, and her focus returned to the task at hand. The butterbeer she had been pouring was overflowing, running all over the cart and her hands. How strange... She hadn't even noticed. She mumbled a curse under her breath and heard a laugh from her left.
"I guess I'm coming at just the right time," Paul said with a crooked smile. "The heat's getting to your head. We're switching - you've got the sim." The sim was the simulation ride, the one in which the audience "participated" in a Quidditch match. "Be warned though... Thing's been glitching all morning. They'll probably have you in there fixing it, Miss Engineering Major." Paul was the one friend Robin had made at Universal. The rest of the staff seemed stiff and unfriendly to her, so she kept to herself for the most part.
"Thank you so much," Robin said, giving Paul a quick hug. Her voice had a slightly Southern drawl to it. "I don't care about fixing the ride as long as I'm inside. Let me know if you need anything." And with that, she was off, heading toward the simulator. After a thought, she glanced back toward where the strange man had been a moment earlier. He was gone, seemingly disappeared. Shrugging, Robin arrived at the front entrance and relieved the girl there to check the fast passes.
Her radio buzzed a few moments later.
"Robin, we need you in the back," a garbled voice said. She replied her affirmative and walked around to the back of the ride, opening the door and letting the cool air wash over her for a moment. Then she found the engineer, and approached him.
There was something... Off. She couldn't really tell what it was but she knew that the machinery didn't look right.