Evan checked his phone for the third time in twenty minutes. Nothing. He had always hated waiting. What’s worse, the meeting he was stuck in wasn’t making the time pass any faster. Evan adjusted his posture to hide his impatience, and added another inscrutable note to the sheet of legal paper in front of him. He looked up--in case anyone had caught his lapse of attention--only to see several other associates at the table sharing his same glazed look. Funny, Evan thought, so many fancy suits in the same room, so many fancy law degrees, and still everyone’s as inattentive as a group of high schoolers in the last class of the day. Evan checked his phone again. A notification! Could it be her? His heart pounded against his chest.
“...But these representations are all standard, I assure you. The Myanmar property isn’t a liability in the slightest…” The lawyer on the conference call wavered slightly. Evan couldn’t tell if the voice on the other end was concerned, or if it was just fatigue from the hours-long call. Bruce Heatherington--an intimidating senior partner at the firm--leaned towards the conference speaker.
“It’s not that the representations aren’t standard,” Mr. Heatherington intoned, furrowing his eyebrows, “it’s that they’re lacking. We’ve had our best associates doing their due diligence, and they found that the Myanmar property was… how did you put it, Evan?”
Evan sat up with a jolt at the sound of his name. All eyes were on him. What had Mr. Heatherington just said? Evan slipped his phone back into his suit pocket, and opened his mouth as if to speak.
“Well, you see…” He began to stammer. Was that sweat on his brow?
“There’s no need to quote our own diligence back at us,” crackled the lawyer on the other end of the conference call, “we’ll draft an amended schedule and get it back by close of business tomorrow.” Saved by the bell, Evan sighed to himself.
And with some throat-clearing and paper-shuffling, the meeting was finally over. Associates and partners hustled back to their desks. The thrilling life of a corporate attorney. Boring as it was, it kept food on the table for Evan.
“Speaking of which…” Evan murmured to himself sotto voce. He fished his phone out of his suit pocket, and tapped the message notification. The message had no contact associated with it, just an ominous unknown number. He read every word with greedy eyes.
“Yes, Evan. I’ll write your hot little story for you. Skype me tonight so I can get a sense for who you are. You know, so I can tailor your story to you as a person. Not that you’ll fit in any tailoring when I’m done with you - X” Evan felt hot around the collar. He exhaled sharply, and looked at his watch. 6:00 PM. He could easily make it home by 7:00, if he took the 1 train to the...
“Evan.” The voice carried the stern tone of a disappointed father. “I couldn’t help but notice that you seemed a little distracted during the call today.”
Evan froze and spun around. Sure enough, there was Mr. Heatherington in all his intimidating girth.
“I’m sorry, Sir. I’ve got a case coming up, and I guess I was preoccupied.”
Mr. Heatherington’s face changed completely, breaking into a chuckle and a gregarious smile.
“Ah! Say no more, say no more. The troubled mind of an associate. Just don’t let it happen again. And I’ll see you on the softball field this weekend; we need your throwing arm if we’re going to beat Bismarck & Lovetts!” He clapped Evan on the shoulder a broad hand, and strutted off to some corner office or another. Corporate softball. Perhaps the worst part of it all. Evan had always been an athlete, but one’s weekend should be spent without coworkers, he had always thought.
“What case?” A prim voice came from the presumed-to-be empty conference room, taking Evan by surprise for the third time this afternoon. He wheeled around again, and was slightly relieved. It was Amy. Amy was an associate, too; they had started in the same year, which fostered a healthy sense of camaraderie and competition. And, perhaps, something a little more….
“Amy, you gave me a scare there!” Evan exhaled, “I thought you were–”
“...Someone who’d call you out on your fib? I'm on every case you're on, and they're all months away from filing!" There was a devilish twinkle in her eye. Playful ribbing was uncommon among associates, but Evan and Amy took refuge in their harmless flirting. "Honestly, you were checking your phone like every twenty seconds. Who's got you so distracted?"
Evan grinned back. "That's for me to know, and for you to not worry yourself about."
"Casanova!" Amy teased, and then imitated Mr. Heatherington's boisterousness, "See you on the softball field, champ!" She clapped him on the shoulder, too, before smiling and heading back to her office.
Any other day, that interaction would've had Evan walking on sunshine. Today, however, he had other things on his mind. Secret things. Sexy things. Fattening things.
Evan felt himself getting hot and bothered again. This evening couldn't come soon enough.
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