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Napkin with cry for help on floor | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe
Napkin with cry for help on floor | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

Waitress Notices Napkin Scribbled with the Words "HELP ME" on Restaurant Floor — Story of the Day

Sonali Pandey
Jun 27, 2024
08:22 A.M.

"HELP ME!!!" Waitress Vanessa sees a scary message on a napkin. Worried, she scans the cafe and finds her boss, a young couple, a strange man with a little girl, and four elderly people, one of them blind. Who among them needs help?

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In the busy downtown café Espresso, Vanessa was busy working when she noticed something on the floor. She knelt and picked up a napkin, the words "HELP ME!!!" scribbled on it hastily.

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

A chill ran down her spine, and she quickly looked around the café. All diners seemed relaxed, except for a young woman at a table with an angry man. Vanessa felt the woman might be in trouble.

She approached their table and asked, "Is everything alright here? Can I get you something?"

"Everything's fine," the man snapped at her, but Vanessa noticed the woman looked scared.

Vanessa knew she had to inform her boss, Mr. Evans, even though he was having dinner with his wife and didn't like to be interrupted between meals.

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For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

She approached him and said, "Mr. Evans, I apologize for the interruption, but I urgently need a word with you in private. It's extremely important."

Mr. Evans was obviously annoyed but agreed to talk in the kitchen when she persisted. Vanessa showed him the napkin and explained her worry.

"And who do you think wrote this?" he asked.

"I don't know, Mr. Evans. I found it just a few minutes ago. I think it might be from a customer in danger."

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

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Mr. Evans didn't believe the note was serious and dismissed it as a prank. "We had a bunch of teenagers earlier. Maybe it was one of them."

But Vanessa was worried and insisted on checking the café's cameras. When they checked the CCTV, they found a gap in the footage, which made Vanessa more anxious.

"I think we need to call the police," she suggested, scared.

"What? It's probably a system bug. We can't call the cops without proper evidence," Mr. Evans replied, not wanting to make a big deal out of it, and returned to his table.

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

Right then, Vanessa noticed the couple she had approached earlier arguing. The man was angry, and the woman looked scared. Vanessa walked over to them, pretending to be calm.

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"Hi there, seems like something's bothering you. Can I get you anything?" Vanessa asked, trying to see if the woman needed help.

"We're fine. How many times do I have to tell you, huh? Just bring the check!" the man growled.

This woman has to be the one in trouble, Vanessa thought. "I-I'll get the check right now," she replied and hurried away. But Vanessa had a plan at the back of her mind to save the woman.

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

With a glass of water, she approached the couple's table again, her heart pounding against her chest. As she reached the table, she feigned a slip, spilling the cold water all over the man's shirt.

The glass clattered against the table, drawing startled looks from nearby diners. Aghast, Mr. Evans mumbled a curse. The angry man rose, enraged. "What the hell is wrong with you?" he yelled.

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His outburst drew the attention of other waiters and waitresses, who stopped in their tracks, their eyes wide with shock. "I'm so sorry, it was an accident. The water… it just slipped. Sorry," Vanessa stammered.

"You've ruined my shirt... and my dinner! How can you be so incompetent?" the man fumed. "What is it with every girl I meet? Imbeciles, all of them!"

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

Vanessa continued apologizing, her eyes flickering to the woman, who had now burst into tears. "I'm sorry, sir. Perhaps you could clean up in the washroom? We–we have a dryer there. That way, please..."

With the man gone, Vanessa quickly sat across from the crying woman. "Are you okay?" she asked.

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The woman replied, "I'm not alright," as sobs rocked her body.

"We should call the police," Vanessa suggested. "They can help."

The woman's tears flowed freely as she shook her head, her voice trembling. "No, you don't understand. The police can't help. It's not like that," she sniffled.

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

"What do you mean?" Vanessa prodded gently, her curiosity piqued. She glanced towards the restroom and whispered, "We don't have much time. He could be back any minute. We should call the police and stop this before he hurts you again."

The woman's eyes widened in alarm. "Hurt me? No, you've got it all wrong. Josh is a good man. He's never laid a hand on me."

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"Then what's going on? Why are you so scared?" Vanessa was confused.

The woman bit her lip, a look of anguish washing over her face. "I don't know how to tell Josh about... about my short fling when he wasn't home. And now, I don't know who the father of my baby is."

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

Oh gosh!

"Did you write this note?" Vanessa asked, showing the napkin to the woman.

"I didn't," she said. "I don't know anything about this note."

Vanessa got up and left. Which customer here wanted help? She looked around in confusion when a voice called out to her. Turning around, she noticed a middle-aged man beckoning her over. Across from him sat a little girl, no more than six or seven, her eyes wide and curious.

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"Yes?"

"Can I have a hamburger with extra cheese, please?" the girl asked.

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

The man's demeanor changed instantly. "No hamburgers on weekdays! You know the rules!" he reprimanded her.

Right then, Vanessa accidentally dropped her pen, and as she knelt, her eyes widened in horror. She saw bruises on the girl's legs under the table and noticed a gun tucked in the man's belt.

The man caught Vanessa's lingering gaze as she rose. "Mind your own business and do your job," he snapped. "Just bring me two teas!"

"Wha-what kind of tea would you like, sir?" Vanessa asked, her heart racing.

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"Black tea," the man replied impatiently.

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

As she turned away, Vanessa's mind worked furiously, piecing together a plan. She decided to send a secret message to the girl by hiding a note under her teacup. The note said, "Meet me outside the ladies' bathroom in 5 minutes. Don't tell him."

But the man saw the note and got angry. He thrust the napkin towards her, his eyes blazing with fury. "Explain this. Now!" he demanded.

"It was just a... a mistake, sir. I must have grabbed the wrong napkin," she stammered.

"Are you trying to meddle with my child?"

"No, sir, I would never—"

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For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

"I can arrest you right now. I have solid evidence!"

"Are you... are you a police officer?" she gasped.

"Yes. And a proud father. My daughter just earned her black belt in karate!"

Vanessa's eyes widened in realization. The bruise-like marks — they were from the little girl's karate activities. She felt a wave of embarrassment and regret wash over her. "I'm so sorry, I misunderstood the situation. I thought…"

But the man was not appeased. "You thought wrong. Step aside with me, now," he ordered, signaling his daughter to stay put.

"Explain yourself. What's going on here?" he asked.

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For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

"I thought... I suspected someone was in trouble because of this napkin," she said, showing him the napkin with the words "HELP ME."

"If someone were really in trouble, they wouldn't be so carefree," he said, looking at the other diners. "Trust me, I know these things."

"But what if we're missing something?"

"Let's keep an eye out for now. If you notice anything else, let me know immediately."

Vanessa nodded. She grabbed two napkins on which she scribbled — "Don't worry. I'll call the cops & help you" — and discreetly slipped each one under two teacups. She then carried the cups to the table where four elderly patrons, two men and two women, were chatting merrily. She had to check each table to figure out who needed help.

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For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

"Complimentary tea for our esteemed guests," she announced with a practiced smile, watching their reactions closely while Richard observed from a distance.

Retreating to join Richard, Vanessa's eyes never left the table. Soon, one of the older ladies called out to her, a puzzled expression on her face as she held up the napkin. "Dear, what is this about? Is everything alright?"

Vanessa's mind raced as she quickly concocted a response. "Oh, I'm so sorry, that was a mistake. Just ignore it," she said, her smile faltering slightly.

As she turned away, her gaze fell on the other older lady. She was blind and couldn't have written the note.

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Confusion and frustration washed over Vanessa as she rejoined Richard. "Not that table, for sure," she sighed.

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

"If it's not any of them, then there's only one other possibility," she nervously declared, whispering a name.

Richard looked at her, his expression serious. "Alright... I'm willing to help, but are you ready to take a risk? I have a plan."

Vanessa nodded firmly. "I'll do anything to help this person. Whatever it takes."

***

Vanessa approached Mr. Evans again and said she wanted to talk to him. "It's urgent," she insisted. He and his wife had finished dinner and were about to leave.

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For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

Mr. Evans forced a smile. "Melanie, darling, would you mind waiting in the car? I'll be there shortly."

Melanie's smile seemed strained as she nodded. Vanessa caught a fleeting look of fear in her eyes, a silent scream beneath the surface.

"What's this about? You're being incredibly intrusive. I expect an apology," Mr. Evans said as they stepped aside.

"I don't owe you an apology. I know who wrote the message on the napkin. It's Melanie, your wife!"

A sheepish chuckle escaped Mr. Evans' lips. "That's ridiculous. It was probably some prank from the teen crowd."

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For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

But Vanessa didn't back down. She produced a napkin from her pocket, on which she'd written 'IT'S HARRY.'

"I found this on your table just now," she lied, her heart racing with the gamble she was taking.

Watching Mr. Evans closely, she saw his facade crack, the color draining from his face.

"I'll call the cops if I have to," she threatened, her voice steady despite her inner turmoil. As she turned to leave, Mr. Evans' hand shot out, gripping her arm with surprising strength. He pulled her into the empty, dimly lit kitchen, his eyes blazing with fear and fury.

"You've challenged the wrong guy, Vanessa!"

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For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

"What have you done to Melanie?" she asked bravely.

Mr. Evans angrily admitted he had threatened his wife not to act against his wishes after she learned about his affair and wanted a divorce. "Do you have any idea what a divorce would mean? Alimony, splitting my assets... I'd lose half of everything to her. I'd lose custody of my son. I had to quiet her!"

"You can't control people like this. It's wrong!"

Mr. Evans laughed coldly. "I've been getting away with it, and you can't stop me!"

"What did you do to your son? Have you threatened him, too?"

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

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"Peter is safe at my farmhouse," Mr. Evans smirked, "away from Melanie."

"You took your own son hostage to control Melanie?" Vanessa gasped.

"I had to show her who's in charge. And I'll finish this with a 'tragic' car accident in a week. But I promise you... Melanie won't be the only victim."

Mr. Evans grabbed a chopping knife from the kitchen counter, and Vanessa's eyes widened in terror. "Please, don't do this. You don't have to hurt anyone!"

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

But as he moved towards her, the lights went out. In the darkness, Officer Richard appeared and grabbed Mr. Evans.

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"You're done, Evans. This is enough to arrest you," he said, holding the man. The lights flickered back on, revealing Richard's grim expression as he restrained Mr. Evans.

Mr. Evans tried to deny everything, but Richard revealed he had recorded the confession on his phone. Richard also called for backup to rescue Peter from the farmhouse.

Feeling triumph and relief, Vanessa dashed out of the cafe to tell Melanie that help was on the way for her and her son.

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

For illustration purposes only | Source: YouTube / DramatizeMe

Tell us what you think about this story, and share it with your friends. It might brighten their day and inspire them.

If you enjoyed reading this story, you might like this one about a woman who shares her family's picnic video online, only for the cops to knock on her door the next day and arrest her husband.

This piece is inspired by stories from the everyday lives of our readers and written by a professional writer. Any resemblance to actual names or locations is purely coincidental. All images are for illustration purposes only. Share your story with us; maybe it will change someone's life. If you would like to share your story, please send it to info@amomama.com.

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