The Department Store Lion Chapter 2: Harrod’s

The Department Store Lion Chapter 2: Harrod’s

            The building which Hailey had seen
out of the corner of her eye looked like a large palace fit for any king or
queen. The building had a dome like an overturned china bowl at the very top
and vibrant banners, from countries all over the world, which hung from steel
flagpoles. In addition, the building had dozens of windows and a goldish tint
on the outside brickwork. However, Hailey knew that Buckingham Palace was
several miles away and that this majestic building was actually Harrod’s
department store. This department store was similar to a luxury boutique in
most ways, but what set it apart from other department stores was that it sold exotic
animals. To Hailey, it seemed that any member from the animal kingdom could be
bought at Harrod’s if potential owners were deemed responsible and willing to
provide the animals with the special care that they needed. This fact did not
strike Hailey as being terribly unusual because she had seen many of her
college classmates’ exotic pets which had come from Harrod’s.

when Hailey had been buying a new headband from a clothing stall on the street,
Hailey had seen one of her classmates, Jill Porter, controlling a leopard cub
with a flexible leash while Jill talked in a red striped telephone booth. As
Hailey drew closer to the store, she saw a uniformed doorman who was wearing a
dark blue cap and overcoat standing in front of the building. The man tipped
his hat to people passing by and gave directions to others who seemed lost or
confused. The man smiled as he saw Hailey walking towards the store and pointed
to a series of spinning glass doors. Hailey followed the man’s gaze and then
paused as she wondered if it would wise to stay at Harrod’s. After all, she
couldn’t really afford any of the products in the store. What if she was
tempted to buy something? After a momentary hesitation, Hailey unzipped her
black jacket and pushed through the series of spinning glass doors until she
reached the other side.

What meet Hailey’s gaze there filled
her with wonderment. The inside of Harrod’s was more magnificent than anything
that she could have imagined. From floor to ceiling, elegance was supreme. The
store was spotlessly clean and had intricate marble carvings along the ceiling
and tops of wooden posts. On one wall, there were marble figures of a boy and a
girl sitting on top of a real mahogany bookcase. As Hailey traveled deeper into
the store, she saw display cases of expensive jewelry, boxes of clothing, and
shiny bottles of perfume in the women’s section. Hailey tapped her finger on
her chin as she looked at a pair of chic high button boots, but turned away reluctantly
and decided to ride the escalator to the second floor. While wandering on the
second floor, Hailey caught glimpses of other sections including a pharmacy
with packaged medicines which gave off a strong odor and a food court which
looked like a buffet with the variety of dishes which were offered. The sight
of a bronze placard stopped Hailey in her tracks as she read Harrod’s motto
which said, “Something for everyone.”

doubted if this could really be true but smiled as she saw an assortment of
candies near a check-out counter for swimwear. Now, this was something
that she could afford as a souvenir! After Hailey waited in line behind a woman
with chestnut brown hair in a beehive, Hailey stepped up to the cashier and placed
a box of vanilla taffy on the wood counter. The cashier looked at Hailey over
the tops of his glasses and said, “Are you sure that this is all that you want
to buy, miss?” Hailey looked down at her shoes embarrassed and was about to say
something when the cashier asked, “Have I met you somewhere?”

titled her head, “Why, no. Not unless…”

man began to become excited as he removed his glasses and said, “It’s strange
because you look almost identical to Edward Cummings’ daughter.” A light came
into Hailey’s eyes as she said, “I am Edward Cummings’ daughter and…” The man
clapped his hands together and said, “Of course! Your father told me that you
would be staying in London when you started college. I used to be one of your
father’s coworkers at Macy’s and it was always a pleasure to work with him.”

fell silent as she wondered whether or not she could really trust this man. Was
he only impersonating one of her father’s coworkers? The man seemed to
understand her uneasiness and did the best thing by saying, “Is your great aunt
still forever thirty-nine?” Hailey gasped. Hailey’s great aunt didn’t like to
tell anyone her real age and claimed that she thirty-nine, even though it was
obvious that she was past middle-age.

            “Mr. Peterson!” said Hailey without
a hint of shyness. “My father has told me so much about you! How is it that you
are in London?”

Mr. Peterson said as he wiped his glasses with a microfiber cloth, “I thought
that it would be more exciting to work at Harrod’s, especially with the arrival
of five superstars.”

Hailey repeated, “What superstars? Do you mean the Beatles?”

Peterson pretended to be shocked. “Why don’t you know? They are the new lion
cubs that have come into the store recently.”


everyone! Thank you for reading! Please, let me know if you have any
suggestions for the story in the comments section! I will be posting Chapter
Three very soon.

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The Department Store Lion Chapter 2: Harrod’s

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