So I’ll start off this story by saying I’m a 20 year old female who is of pretty good height, around 5’10. I also have naturally bright red hair, so this tends to attract some attention, and not all of it is always good.
I come from a pretty small town, so the closest Starbucks is an hour away. This city is also where the closest mall is, so any time we go shopping, we take advantage of the Starbucks being there and we make sure to get our favorite drinks.
One day, my mom and I were back to school shopping. We went to the mall and started in one of my favorite stores, one known for selling bras and things for women mostly. I needed to try a bra on, and went to find someone for a dressing room. When I turned the corner in the store, I locked eyes with a man standing near the wall.
This man was probably the creepiest person I’d ever seen. He was maybe six foot two, with a long beard that looked so gross. He also looked like he hadn’t showered in days. He was just standing there, with a weird grin on his face. I looked down, not wanting to keep eye contact, and pretended to search a rack near me to act like I hadn’t been seen. He must have known what I was doing, because he walked over to me. My heart was pounding.
“You have awful pretty hair.” He said this while breathing near me. His smelled rank and like vomit.
I told him thank you and smiled, not wanting to be rude. Social anxiety can be a bitch sometimes, even if the person you’re dealing with is a man like this.
“Do you have a boyfriend?” The man asked, tilting his head. What the hell?
My red flags glaring, I replied, “Yes.” Even though I actually didn’t at the time.
This seemed to anger him, even though we had only been speaking for about three seconds, tops. “A pretty girl like you probably deserves better.”
I was stunned. Who the hell was this guy? I began to back away as slow as I could, for fear of upsetting him.
As fast as I could, I quickly excused myself, and stuck by my mom’s side for the rest of our shopping trip. I had almost completely forgot about him by the next few stores, though the creepy feeling lingered.
After all that, my mom and I had finished shopping and we were at the Starbucks in the mall. We were both fairly worn out from shopping and I had to use the bathroom, which was right around a wall and out of sight from the lobby of the Starbucks.
I must have been in there no more than two minutes when I heard a bang on the door. I jumped, obviously scared from the loud noise. I had just sat down, my freaking pants around my ankles, and said, “Sorry, just a minute!”
There was silence, so I figured whoever it was had walked away. It had been no more than ten seconds though, and another loud BANG! This time, I was annoyed. I had clearly said that someone was in here. A few more minutes and two more bangs went by. Was no one hearing this?!
Now, I am a redhead, and the stereotype about our tempers is true – at least mine is, and at that moment, I was pissed. So I pulled my pants up, not having done any business, and yanked the door open.
My mouth fell open when I realized it was the man who had been following us around the mall. His beard was even more gross up close, and he smelled like dog shit and eggs. His eyes were wild as he smiled at me, and he didn’t say anything, just staring. My heart was beating wildly, and I was scared out of my mind because of how creepy his grin was.
Suddenly, he reached out and grabbed my arm, and started pulling me away from the bathrooms and towards the exits. Shocked, I began screaming, and I got the attention of my mom, who ran towards us and began hitting the creepy guy with her purse.
The guy eventually gave up and ran out the front of the Starbucks. I was hyperventilating, going over what had just happened. That guy had seriously tried to kidnap me!
My mom was able to get me calmed down and the police were called, and we filed a report. I was near tears the whole time. It turns out that the man was actually someone who had been reported at the mall before for following young girls around and going into the women’s restroom once.
It’s safe to say I did not order anything from Starbucks that day.