Something happened with this first chapter and I've only just realised, so I'm re-uploading. Hopefully this helps it figure itself out.

Elements of the movie Barefoot will be scattered throughout this story. If you haven't seen it, you definitely should. It's basically just a grown-up version of Tangled, at the end of the day.


His lips twisted as the mop hit the water in its bucket too hard, sending a soapy mess down on his boots. This wasn't good for his image. Or his expensive shoes.

Just two weeks left until his community service was up and he could kiss this place goodbye. The trial on its way probably would result in worse than him mopping floors, but he pushed that thought out of his head as quickly as he could.

He'd been stationed to complete his service at what he liked to think of as an adult boarding house. Somewhere for people too old for foster care to be put to sort out their lives. He knew all about it. He'd lived in one just like it. Cheap rent, usually government subsidised, while they tried to help you find a job and get you on your feet. Not for him. He'd take swiping things that weren't his over letting someone help him do basic tasks any day.

There were only two floors, not including the entry floor he was on now. His job was to make the entry shine, as if it could look welcoming in any way, and then the halls above him, knocking on doors to see if any of the tenants would like garbage removed or basic cleaning. They'd really screwed him over with this one. He didn't suit the title of "servant".

Flynn Rider was only known to do his best for himself. He figured if he got most of the floor it was good enough. This place was never going to look good enough. This place was never going to look remotely alright. It had probably been built forty years ago, and the beige paint was peeling in the top corners. There was a huge ugly desk, too centred in the room, which had suffered graffiti with pens and nails so there wasn't a smooth spot of wood to be seen. Flynn had never seen anyone working there, so it didn't seem to matter. Once the building had been a hotel, and he doubted the desk had been used since.

The lights above him were a foggy yellow and his eyes always seemed to adjust to it and go into shock when he walked out into the street after he'd finished. He tried not to think about leaving when he'd just started his shift. He didn't like being told where to be. He usually rebelled against it, but with his upcoming trial he was trying to be on his best behaviour.

The glass doors behind him opened and he heard heels clicking against the stone floors. He didn't bother to turn around to see who had entered.

"It's huge!"

"Don't worry, your room's smaller than this one."

"Who's that?"

"Don't talk to him," the last sentence was said quieter than the others, but Flynn expected he'd been meant to hear it.

The girl with the heeled boots walked behind the desk and shuffled around in its shelves for a second, muttering to herself in a whisper. Flynn had seen her before, when he'd first started his service. She was very tall and thin with a short, blunt hair cut. Good looking enough to take ho,e, but she didn't seem like much fun. She obviously worked for the people in charge of the housing or something.

Flynn, not interested enough in their interaction but finding it more amusing than his mop and bucket, turned to find the other girl watching him curiously.

He was uncomfortable almost immediately. People he'd caught staring at him usually looked away awkwardly, but this girl didn't. Her eyes were too wide and her eyebrows too high, and she stared him down, unashamed.

There was something odd about her. She wore a large knitted cardigan and a dress sizes too big for her that hung to her shins. Her feet were bare and she curled her toes when he cast his eyes down at them. Her hair was a yellow-blonde that was cut to her hips without any style. It obviously wasn't her natural colour – an inch or two of dark regrowth was present at her roots where her hair parted.

"Okay," the first girl breathed as she found what she was looking for. "Here's your key. Got everything?"

"Everything I own," the blonde girl murmured, resting her hand on the single canvas shoulder bag that hung at her side.

"Then let's go."

Flynn raised his eyebrows uncomfortably as he dropped the mop to the floor once more. The girl was probably a victim of family violence or a disaster that took her home and family away or something. Maybe she'd gotten herself into a relationship too young and it had taken a turn and she'd fled with just a bag of clothing and no shoes. She seemed a bit haunted, whatever the circumstance.

The pair of girls disappeared into the old elevator and Flynn put them out of his mind and focused on completing his jobs as quickly as possible. He might have time to meet up with an old girlfriend at a bar if he pushed himself.

The rooms were the easier side of the work. Almost everyone wanted garbage collected, but the majority of tenants usually did their own cleaning. Not to mention a few of the rooms had been empty since he'd arrived. Corona had a good support program for people who needed it, so there wasn't really a reason to be unemployed unless that's what the person wanted. People usually moved in and moved on pretty quickly.

He was in a daze as he moved along the hall, knocking on each door, usually receiving a response, putting the bags of garbage in his trolley and providing them with a bag for the next day. He usually tried not to think about how much work he had left. He felt like that made the time quicker, but he was probably just being hopeful.

He got to door 14 and sighed. Two doors left and he could move upstairs to the last part of his service. From memory the last couple of doors on this floor were usually empty, but he always knocked just incase. He lifted his knuckles and rapped on the door loudly.

A terrified shriek, followed by a large clattering sound came from inside and he grabbed the door knob immediately.

"Hey, you okay in there?" he leaned toward the door, but there was no answer.

Great. He'd caused someone to have an accident just by doing his job. He was going to be in shit over this.

"Hello? You alright?" still no answer. He twisted the door knob between his fingers, and it opened easily to an empty room.

The room was undecorated, just the staple furniture and appliances that was provided to all tenants. Maybe the scream had come from another room, this one looked like it hadn't been used in a while.

"Hello?" Flynn took half a step forward and leaned inside, trying to see over the counter in the kitchen to make sure no one had taken a fall or something.

And that's the last thing he remembered.


He was disorientated when he woke up, however long later. There was a ringing in his ears and the back of his head was killing him. He reached up to rub a hand against it, to see if he had a welt or something, but a solid wall stopped his arm.

He pressed his hands frantically in front of him, then to the sides. Nothing but walls. It was pitch black and he could feel thin cloth around him. Shit. Someone he owed money to had found him and buried him alive.

He felt his heart speed up in his chest and he tried to breathe evenly. What was the last thing he remembered? He threw his head back and a tiny sliver of dull light caught his eye. He pushed his hand forward carefully, silently, and followed the light. He could feel a crack. It was a door. He jiggled it, but it seemed to be locked from the outside. He heard a sharp intake of breath from somewhere outside, and after a few seconds, the door was pulled open in front of him.

It was that weird blonde girl from downstairs. She was protecting herself with a frying pan held out in front of her, and he suddenly knew what had caused his migraine. He lifted his hands up in surrender and arched an eyebrow at her.

"What are you doing here?" she asked threateningly.

"What? I came to see if you had any garbage you wanted me to take."

She frowned at him. "What do you want with my garbage?"

He chuckled in disbelief and rubbed his eyes. "It's my job. For now. Not my actual job."

"What's your actual job?" the hand holding her frying pan started to lower itself and she looked him curiously, her head slightly tilting to the side.

He looked toward the door. This girl was even weirder than she looked. "Why do you need to know?"

"I don't need to know. I was just asking."

"Well it's none of your business."

"Why do you work here if it's not your actual job?"

"Jeez, what's with the interrogation? Am I allowed to leave and do what I have to do? What time is it?" he looked for a clock on her walls, but of course her room wasn't furnished enough for that. And he'd left his phone in his trolley, texting his friend to see where she'd be headed tonight. To a small bar not far from here, then hopefully back to his place.

"You were only in there for half an hour. I made sure you weren't dead." She seemed pleased with herself.

"Great," he sighed, lowering his arms completely. "Thanks for that."

"You're welcome," she chewed on her lower lip for a second, staring him down again with her big green eyes. "You were mopping the floor."

"Listen, Blondie,"

"Rapunzel,"

"Gesundheit," he started walking toward the door slowly, still aware of her weapon in her hand. "I've got places to go and people to see. You've already made me late getting out of here, so if you don't mind I'll be on my way."

"Where are you going?" she followed his step toward the door.

"Out," he stated. He reached for the door handle and turned around, glad to see she was still a few steps away. "Look, keep your door locked. You don't know what kind of people could be wandering the halls in here. Your frying pan won't keep you safe while you're sleeping." He stepped outside and stuck his head back in just enough to see her watching him curiously. "See ya, Blondie."