Chapter 16 - Taylorism
A personal assistant.
Kate had scoffed at the idea with Brandon seated right across from her. There were no vacancies, no place to squeeze her in. Brandon must have seen the wave of desperation and the hint of dissapointment as it washed over her face when the human resources manager made the announcement to them. Because in a matter of minutes, he had created a post for her eventhough the he already had a secretary.
“Don’t you already have a secretary?” She had asked him as they sat in his modernized top window office.
“Yeah, I do but it doesn’t mean that I can’t have more help.” He had told her.
“Won’t she feel belittled?”
“Yes. As much as I want to work, I don’t want to feel as though I’m stepping on her toes.”
“Julianne is an angel. She wouldn’t mind. I do far too many things around here for her to keep up with, so I’m sure that she would love the extra pair of hands.”
“But still... I--”
“You seemed awfully resistant on the idea of working for me. Weren’t you in desperate need of this?”
“I am.” She had told him, ” I’m not trying be ungrateful here, it’s just...”
“Look, I’ve already told you that I work for Taylor half the time and aside from that, as you can see, I already have my own law firm. So this is what we’ll do. Julianne will handle all my agendas for the firm and you, sweet Kate, will assist me with Price Empire. That way my lovely assistant can have some time off her hands to spend with her family.”
She had still been abit hesitant, not sure how his brother would react to the idea. After a few more persuasive acts on Brandon’s behalf, Kate had accepted his offer. Brandon had assured her that she would be working closely with him so, the fear of handling Taylor on her own was put to rest or at least until she is forced to cross that bridge. What mattered now was that she had a job and she could continue to care for her grandmother.
After they were done, Brandon told her that she would be able to start tomorrow, right after she had completed all the legal requirements and had signed the non disclosure agreement, which Taylor had insisted on having everybody that works for him signed.
Kate huffed as she made her way up the steps to her apartment. That’s what she had been levelled to. Brandon’s assistant. Slaving away for the man who got her fired. The irony was just too much.
As she reached the door to her apartment she snaked her hand into her bag, fishing for her keys. She drew in a deep breath as she turned the key and opened the door. Now, she was going to have to explain to he two confused women behind this door why there were two men in the apartment today.
“Mrs.Kirby, I’m back,” her voice echoed throughout the two bedroom apartment. She placed her bag on the small table next to the door.
“Sorry for leaving without a word,” she said grabbing the door knob to close the door, “but I had an emergency to sor-” Her voice died in her throat as she looked over to the dinning table and didn’t know whether it was her heart or the door that made the loud clunk sound.
She stood frozen in place, taken aback by the sight of Taylor Price sitting across from Mrs.Kirby, with a cup a what seemed to be coffee, hooked in his right hand. They both raised their heads and stared at her as if she had intruded on the conversation that they were having.
The polite smile on Mrs.Kirby’s face disolved as she stood up from her chair, scrowling back at Kate.
“Kate, I can’t believe you didn’t say anything.” Her chubby hands went to her waist.
Kate swallowed biting down hard on her lower lip.
He told her, was the first thing that popped through her mind. Her fingers tigthened around the cold knob as she leaned on the wood door for support, cringing from the disappointment in Mrs.Kirby’s voice.
She stole a glance from Taylor, hoping to find something, anything that could tell her that she was wrong. But there were none. His expression remained blank as he stared back at her.
His eyes weren’t cold, not like that night before. They were just... different and she wasn’t quite sure what to make of it.
When she didn’t reply Mrs.Kirby shook her head at her and fold her hands onto her chest.
“You have nothing to say for yourself? Especially to your grandmother?” Mrs.Kirby asked.
Oh, my god! He told nana as well? Her insides crumbled at the thought.
She wanted to strangle him. He had no right. No freaking right to do that. She was the one who was suppose to break the news gently to her nana, not some over egotistical brute, who had the compassion of a robot. Fuck!
“Mrs.Kirby, I’m sorry.” Kate said pushing off the door, “I was going to tell you but I got distracted this morning.” She lied, sneeking a cold stare past Taylor, who sat there looking like nothing was a mist.
It pissed her off. It was one thing for him to mess with her but a whole other thing to sit there and rejoice in the shit that he had just unloaded on her grandmother. Screw his so called reputation, his money or the power that he had to make her life a living hell. He was going to regret doing this.
“Mr.Price...” she snapped bitterly at him, her fists tightening at her side.
Mrs.Kirby’s brows touched, “Is that what you call him?”
Her jaws clenched, frowning back at Mrs.Kirby.“What else would I call him?” She asked, swallowing the need to suggest calling him, 'an asshole, an emotionless humanoid, a walking dick with power.'
A smile cracked on Mrs.Kirby’s face as she shook her head lightly, turning around to Taylor.
“I suppose the new generation do tend to find new ways to turn each other on.” She laughed.
Kate’s face turned crimson, her eyes bulged out.
Dear lord, she was even worst than Nana.
“Mrs.Kirby!” She cried out, face palming herself.
There was no coming back from this. She wanted to crawl down a deep black whole and never come out. Jesus! She groaned in embarrassment.
“It’s quite alright, dear.” Mrs.Kirby said walking to Kate and patted her on her shoulder, “I’m not one to criticise. I think I might even give it a go and start calling Harris, Mr. Kirby. You know, try and spice things up abit.” She laughed.
Kate’s face grew brighter as she covered her face with bother her hands, “Oh my god, she won’t stop!“She muttered against the palm of her hands.
Mrs.Kirby moved away from her. Kate could hear her footsteps as she shuffle through the dirty plates the kitchen.
“I never thought I’d see the day that your grandmother would offer to make your new beaucoffee.”
The sound of her laugh drained the blood in Kate’s face, her face paled.
“My new what?” Kates head sprung up to Mrs.Kirby then back to Taylor who merely had his brows raised.
Her eyes quickly averted his as she blushed once more. Unable to make sense of things.
Why the hell wasn’t he saying anything?
“Taylor here, already told us about you two. He came by a while after you’d left.“Mrs. Kirby then frowned at Kate’s throughly blushed features. “Why are you blushing?”
Kate was at a lost. Confused. Embarrassed. Why did Mrs.Kirby assume that Taylor and her were in a relationship? When the truth of the matter was that he had strong distaste in her and she like wise, strongly despised his guts.
She opened her mouth to set Mrs.Kirby straight but Taylor voice loomed over hers.
“I don’t think our lovely Kate is quite ready for the whole world to know about us.”
Her mouth was left a jar. In complete disbelief that Taylor himself had just confirmed that they were in fact an item.
She stared at him for a moment, wondering whether she had passed out on her way back home and was now dreaming of the scene that was now unraveling before her.
“Honestly, Kate. I can understand you not wanting the whole world to know about it given Taylor’s reputation but your grandmother and I, too?” Mrs.Kirby’s lips quivered in hurt.
Kate turned to Taylor, uncertain of the game that he was playing. What she did know was that she wanted no part in it.
“Mrs.Kirby, would you mind giving Mr.--, Taylor and I a little privacy please? Tell nana that I will be right in to explain everything.” She said, offering her a little smile for reassurance.
Mrs.Kirby wiped her damp hands in her apron after removing it from her neck. She glanced at Taylor, then back to Kate, “Alright. It was nice meeting you, Taylor.” She said before crossing the floor to nana’s bedroom.
Kate released a heavy breath at the sound of the door closing shut. Everything was going to fine, she had a job, there was no need of her grandmother and Mrs.Kirby finding out about anything. Only now it would seem that Taylor had complicated things. For both of them. Why would he do that?
She opened eyes and glared down at Taylor, furious as she stormed over to where he sat. Did he really mean to mess with her at every turn?
The sound of the chair scraping against the floor rested unbothered by both of them as they started at each other in a silent duel.
“Why the hell did you do that?” She hissed under her breath.
Something flickered in his eyes as he raised one of his thick black brows at her.
Her breath caught her throat as her body jerked backwards, hitting the back of her chair.