I woke up the next morning still in a fog. I didn't know if everything I learned last night was real or just a dream but I knew whatever it was would just be the beginning. Val was making coffee so I headed to the kitchen and grabbed a cup.
"How are you feeling? Are you still freaked out? I'm really sorry Anna. I had no clue Zel knew all those things about you. I didn't mean to do that to you." She said with shame in her eyes.
"Val it's ok. Honestly, I think I've always known something was different about me but I guess my parents just tried to protect me by never mentioning anything. I think I need to talk to them. But I just don't know how. It's been so long since I've spoken to them." My eyes filled with tears as I thought back to the last time I saw them. But they thought they knew what was best for me when the let me go.
"Anna, what ever happened between you and your parents, I'm sure everything will be fine. Why don't you try contacting them and talk to them." She squeezed my hand and smiled.
If she only knew the real reason we hadn't talked was because of me, she probably wouldn't be as sympathetic. I spent the last 6 years trying to forget everything that happened but I never really thought about how much pain it caused them. I had to talk to them and find out who I really was. I knew Zel could tell me but I needed to hear it from them and the reason they kept it from me all these years. I vowed to call them as soon as I could but Val and I had a few more houses to see and then I was going to the new office to get aquanted with the new employees before I started next week.
Liz picked us up and took us to the first house. Soon we had seen all three but we still weren't sold on any of them.
"So ladies, which house did you like?" Liz asked.
"I really liked the first house. The pool was perfect and the backyard was nice but kind of smaller than I was hoping for." Val chimes in.
"I liked the third house. My favorite were the wood floors and all the extra space upstairs." I answered.
"But..." Liz laughed "They just aren't what you're looking for." Val and I both chuckled. "I have a new listing coming on the market next week. I think it will be perfect for you both. I'll send you the details tonight and you can take a look." She turned around and walked back to her car.
"House shopping is harder than I thought. Maybe we should stay in the apartment!" I said as we walked back to town. I was loosing faith in finding anything but right now I had to focus. I was meeting my new coworkers in an hour and I needed to be ready. Val bumped my shoulder as we were walking almost as if she knew what I was thinking.
"You'll do great today. I know it. Just be yourself and no one will know what hit them!" I gave her a weary smile and thought, if only I knew myself!
I arrived at the office at noon but most of the staff were at lunch. This gave me enough time for the receptionist, Joan to show me my office and give me a mini tour of the facilities. She was polite and warm and I could tell we would be fast friends.
"The partners have a new clinic coming in at 2. They would like you to sit in on the meeting. Apparently this guy is someone very important who wants an authentic Virginia style mansion built and he heard about you coming to work here." She said with a smile.
"He heard about me already? I just got the promotion three days ago and I haven't even done anything here yet for him to know my work." I said.
"Word travels fast in this small town. He must have looked you up and liked what he saw. Anyway, here are his ideas and there is a file in your email telling you about him. Just make sure to brief yourself before you go in. I've heard he is a real stickler about people being prepared beforehand. Oh and he's extremely handsome!" She gave me a wink before she walked away. I laughed at the thought of her checking out the new client. As soon as I opened my email, I had all the information I needed.
SUBJECT: Jack M. Preston
24 years old
Owner/CEO of Drako Industries - sustainable farming materials
Degree in Agriculture
There were other details but the only one I honed in on was his business. If I knew anything about sweet talking multimillionaires it was that you should always know what they do and how they do it. After a 45 minute search about his company I had enough information for our first meeting. I grabbed the folder off my desk and made my way to the conference room. Mr. Johnson and Mr. Peters were standing by the windows when I walked in. They both turned to me and extended their hands and we shook "Anna, welcome to the firm. We didn't get a chance to speak with you a few days ago after the announcement as we got called back here to an emergency but we certainly are excited about the new things you will be bringing to our company. Please have a seat. Mr. Preston will be here shortly."
"Thank you both for this opportunity. I will do my best to live up to your expectations." I said as I sat down. I opened the folder and became immersed when I felt an intense pair of eyes on me and as soon as I looked up there he was.