Chapter 1 - moving toward a replacementIt was late on a spring Tuesday evening in March, the sun having set some two hours earlier, as Patrick sat quietly in his riverfront, corner office carrying out the tasks of the day. As he went through the stacks of paperwork, simple but numerous pieces and parcels of business matters requiring his approval, his mind wandered back to a few weeks earlier, the day his assistant walked in and caught him completely off guard. "I'm giving you my resignation," began young Sean. Shocked, no; rather, completely blindsided, Patrick raised an eyebrow, but not his voice as he turned around from his credenza toward the ornate cherry desk that seemed at that moment like the Grand Canyon, growing ever wider by the second. "Did I hear that right?" began Patrick. "Yes, sir, you did. I am really sorry, but I have truly found the opportunity of a lifetime. It's not just more money, it's quadruple what I'm currently making here. So I have no choice but to quit. And actually, that's not the worst of it, I can, umm, I can only give one week of notice. I'm so sorry," he intoned. In a millionth of a second, Patrick thought fiercely and begrudgingly of all of the special training, mentoring, pats on the back and taking Sean under his wing, elevating him from worker-bee status to a white-collar assistant manager in barely two years, a very short time. How dare this ungrateful SOB even think of taking a job somewhere else? But ever the one to recover quickly, Patrick graciously accepted the resignation letter from Sean's hand with finality, and thanked him for his service. And then being a tough and focused manager, Patrick cut the conversation off, not allowing any opportunity for discussion or bullshit "regrets". He essentially showed Sean that not only could he be replaced, but the process began while he was still working his final week of notice.
Reality soon set in again, as Patrick's mind-wandering thoughts soon faded, as on this particular evening, Patrick went through a stack of nearly a hundred resumes and pulled out about ten that had the specifics he was looking for. He then narrowed them down to five, and then called the persons who had sent their resumes in to human resources and would be interested in the assistant manager job. The first three said they had taken other jobs, the fourth was not interested. And the last was a very young sounding, intelligent lady. She answered her home phone on the third ring and acted like she was surprised for a call to come in so late. Patrick identified himself and asked if she would like to come in for an interview, and she said yes, so they set up an interview for two days later, ten o'clock in the morning. But before she hung up, the young lady, Kristin, said to Patrick, "I hate to be blunt, but you do know it's 9:30 at night already, right?" Patrick apologized, "No, I completely let things get out of control, so i do apologize for contacting you so late. Since my assistant left, the work volume has been running behind, so evenings are the only time I have had to get things caught up. We will talk more at your interview on Thursday, see you then," he said.
Patrick stood up from his large leather chair and walked out of his office, down the hall to the elevator, and down to the hallway to go out to the garage, where his SUV was parked in his reserved spot. As he went out the door, his fiancee, Laura, called to find out when he would be coming home. "I'm leaving work now," he said. Laura was worried, because with Patrick being such a big man, at 6'3" and 350 lbs., she knew that the stress of the fourteen-hour days was getting to her soon-to-be husband.
When Patrick arrived a few minutes later at his nearby condo, Laura was waiting for him, and had a light dinner ready and some red wine ready for him. Patrick ate the light dinner and drank his wine, and he and Laura went through all of the details on the stressful day that they had both gone through. Laura, who was a private piano instructor, had closed her studio that week for spring break and she had begged Patrick for the opportunity to go to work on a temporary basis at his office to get the backlog caught up. So he reluctantly agreed. That was half the battle, thought Laura.
Bright and early Wednesday morning, Laura woke up extra early and fixed a light breakfast for herself and Patrick, and then chose one of her finest business suits she'd purchased a few weeks earlier and planned to wear it for the day. She put it on and got herself ready while Patrick shaved and showered, and then the two of them rode together to his office not far away. Very soon after she arrived, the staff supervisors, who reported to Patrick, put her to work handling part of the detailed accounting work and part of the client follow up that needed to be done. Laura relished it, because she knew that it would be something to help her beloved Patrick and might even lead him to do what she'd always persuaded...even resorting to the ever-powerful pillow talk after their most heated lovemaking...to try and get him to make a full-time position for her, and bring her onto his management staff full time. Laura had actually met Patrick four years earlier, when he was her boss at another company before they ever started dating. But Patrick was steadfast, he refused to hire his girlfriend, especially now that she was his fiancee, to be in his office, least of all as a direct report. The company would not have tolerated it, although they had okayed her hiring on a contract-basis since things were running behind.
So Laura worked her fingers to the bone that day, and made herself available, despite her intense tiredness, to her beloved Patrick that evening. They cuddled up on the sofa and ordered pizza, and drank more wine. And promptly, as if on queue, both of them passed out before they could even think of rousing, or arousing, the other for some much-desired hanky panky.
They slept side by side on the sofa that night, until almost 4:00 a.m. the next morning, when Patrick woke up and decided to get up for the day. His mind wandered back to losing his trusted assistant Sean. Would he just be better off to just relent, and bring Laura on to his staff full time? Sure, many employees would complain, but the company had no rule against nepotism, as long as one family member did not report to the other. As he shaved and kept himself in deep thought, he decided to just wait and see how the interview with Kristin would go later that morning. After all, he'd chosen her resume out of a stack, so there must be something there, he rationalized.
As he turned to step into the shower, he instead climbed onto the scale. "365" shot back the digital read. Wow. That was a full 15 or more pounds since the latest set of at-work crises had developed. But Patrick didn't give it a second throught. "I can take it off later," he dismissively said. Stepping into the shower, Patrick was joined moments later by his lovely Laura, who playfully explained that she was just trying to save time and water.
Her true intentions were revealed shortly thereafter. As the rhythmic sound of the water drops hitting the sides of the stall, the rising steam rose toward the ceiling, Laura carried forward with a calculated but loving, tip-toed good morning French kiss before trailing downward past a stubble-covered chin and neck. She continued through a patch of thickened, abstract chest hair, working down past his bulging belly, encircling what she'd described often as the most adorable navel on the planet. She then arrived at her first mission of the morning, and carried it out with her eager lips and tongue as her beloved Patrick clenched the sides of the shower, savoring every stroke and movement until his sudden, pulsating moment of release enraptured them both. By the time a full minute had gone by, he recovered enough to let go of the shower walls and open his still-tired eyes. He thought how what had began as a simple shower had instead turned into a moment of unmeasurable relaxation, mandated by his beloved Laura, who by then had resumed her usual showering, hair washing and soon moved on out of the stall to go continue getting herself ready for another day's work.
As Patrick continued to shave and shower, he thought about the business matters ahead that day, and soon got himself ready and joined Laura for the short walk to their automobile. She looked over adoringly at him as he drove out of the parking garage and continued on the 3-minute drive to the office. Once they arrived, after a quick kiss, Laura went on to her dutiful fill-in assignment while Patrick rode the elevator up to the third floor and went back to his office. Soon after he arrived and began going over the scheduled events for the day, his office phone rang. He reached for the phone and heard the young voice of Kristin, his much anticipated interview for that morning, asking if she could come early. "Like how early, your scheduled time is 10:00?" he explained through his question. "Um, well, actually I got an early start, so I'm here right now. Any chance you can just interview me now?" she asked, in her most feminine, pleading voice. "Sure, I can shift a few things around," he said. Looking out the window, his corner office overlooked the beautiful river on one side and the parking lot on the other. Sipping his coffee, he watched from his chair as a small blue sedan pulled into the parking lot at almost the exact time he hung up the phone. Once in the parking space, a svelte young blonde woman stepped out, with long curly locks and wearing a French blue blouse and black mini skirt. She fixed her skirt and hose, not dreaming that her potential boss could see her every move from three stories up. She took a last look at her makeup in the car's side mirror, then quickly turned in her heels toward the front door and walked across the parking lot, never once imagining what lay ahead for her in the not so distant future.
10 chapters, created 10 years , updated 10 years
2 2 9956