After a few more weeks of suffering my pain seemed to settle to a dull ache. I had returned to work hoping my partners had been hearing from Jack but no such luck. We had to put all his plans on hold as we went forth with the restoration of the town library. I was disappointed to say the least but I knew he would never come near me again, that is if I hadn't killed him from my stupidity. I messed up tremendously but I had to try and move on which is why I thought going back to work would help.
I walked along the sidewalk with Mr. Johnson and the mayor towards the library to assess the damage previously done by the water pipe that burst on the third floor last week. The clean up began immediately but there was still a lot of equipment and books that needed to be removed. The majority of them were saved but the section in the corner where the pipe ran was completely destroyed. We started with discussing the blueprints and what the mayor accomplished with this remodel. He informed us that the insurance company would have to do a full assessment before he could give us his budget or any of his ideas and of course there was another company that put in a bid for the job. The library was almost 285 years old and was originally built as Virginia's first governors mansion. It was a marvelous structure of stone and brick with noticeable restoration attempts before due to weather and aging. We weren't allowed to go inside but we looked at pictures from over the years of all the changes and he was really interested in doing a full original restoration. Even down to the ornate wooden carvings that made up the crown molding and bookcases. Of course being great at my job I just so happened to know a few carpenters who specialized in this sort of thing and I made a note to contact them.
After 6 hours of assessments and discussions anout the damage, Mr. Johnson and I returned to the office. We knew if we got this bid we would have a ton of work ahead of us for at least the next year or more. This would definitely make up for the lose of my other project. I was strucken with sadness just at the thought of him. I couldn't even say his name because I didn't deserve to. I treated him exactly like Ryder treated me and I also deserved the same fate that was bestowed upon him. I pushed aside all my feelings and vowed that I would throw myself into this job and prove to the partners that they didn't make a mistake by hiring me.
I turned on my computer and started researching the library. Looking mostly for old pictures of the original construction and furnishings. After a 3 hour search I had enough information to start my drafts. I grabbed my sketch book and laptop and placed everything in my briefcase. I turned off the lights and left my office, saying goodbye to Mr. Johnson before I did.
"Anna? Do you have a second? I just wanted to touch base with you about this project."
"Of course Mr. Johnson." I placed my things on the floor and had a seat across from his desk.
"As you know RPT Architecture has also placed a bid for the remodel of the library. Now I know your abilities will outshine those of Mike and his gang but I think we should have a game plan for in case they pull some tricks."
"Mr. Johnson I understand your concerns with everything that has happened over the last few months but I assure you I am going to give 100% to this project. It is my only priority right now." I said with determination and a little anger in my voice.
"I have no doubt Anna. I just don't understand why Mr. Preston would just disappear without a word about all this. I've tried contacting him several times but he hasn't returned my calls. I even drove by the site and there is no sign that he ever intended to build there. It's like he up and vanished into thin air." He ran his hands through his hair with an exasperated look and sighed.
"I know that project would have done wonders for this company but we have to move on." I gave him a wary smile and got up collecting my things.
"You're right Anna. We have a lot to do if we want to get this bid. You have a goodnight and I will see you tomorrow."
I nodded and walked out his office. I grabbed an umbrella as the weather started to get gloomy out of nowhere and braced myself for the rain. The walk home was unbareable because this is always when I would see that beautiful black wolf, before I knew him as my mate. Thinking back now he was always following me to keep an eye on me and make sure I was never in danger. A tear rolled down my face and just as I wiped it I saw a flash of black to my right. I stopped and stared at the woods hoping to see him but there was nothing there. Great now I'm hallucinating. I stood there for a little while longer before I turned and headed home. Val was in the kitchen studying when I walked in.
"How was your first day back?" She asked with apprehension in her voice.
"It was a nice distraction." I said as I kicked off my heels and dropped my things at the door. I drug myself to the couch and plopped down.
"Well I'm glad you went back. What do you want for supper?"
"I think I'll pass. I just want to bathe and go to bed." I picked myself up off the couch and walked towards my room. "Goodnight Val."
I could hear her sigh. I haven't been eating very much lately and it was showing. My clothes didn't fit and my body was thin and bony but I didn't care. Maybe one night the lack of nutrition would consume me and I wouldn't wake up.