Roger wanted to sue Brandon, his own father. But why?
I thought of the various possibilities as I typed the letter he wanted.
“Did you type it yet?” He questioned me with a stern voice booming out of his office before he emerged. His broad shouldered body towered over me. I quickly typed the letter, addressing it to the attorney.
The letter said nothing more than company’s funds embezzlement but I knew it was more than that. Roger was merely initiating the fall of the first domino. Later he would have a whole case around it.
I typed the last few words before printing and handing it to Roger, who waited in front of me, tapping his feet onto the wooden floor.
“Took you long enough,” his voice stern and authoritative as he stared at me with those jaded blue eyes.
Ouch.. His words did hurt. Roger seemed to be rude and hurtful on purpose.
Standing my ground, literally and figuratively, I answered. “I had to ensure it was error free”.
He peeled his gaze from the letter towards me before looking back at the page.
Maybe I said a lot. Maybe he wasn’t used to people talking back.
“It’s error free. Alright. Type faster next time," he replied without having the courtesy to look at me while addressing.
“Then DON’T stand on my head and I will," words fell out of my mouth before the realization struck.
He turned back from his walk. There wasn’t anger in his eyes but what I witnessed wasn’t a pleasant expression either. It was something vicious. Something seeking revenge and willing to hurt.
He crumpled the letter and tossed it in trash while his eyes stayed focused on me. “It had an error. Type again,” his voice booming through the floor as he commanded me; his slave assistant to type another letter.
He stood in front of my desk while I composed myself, typing again. I knew his gaze was set frozen on me; as was the entire offices’.
You can’t cry now Arin. You have to be strong. You have to hold on. Don’t show you are affected by his arrogant behavior. I reminded myself and revolt of emotions occurred inside of me.
What happened to the sweet man who talked over the call? Who was this ruthless piece of human garbage in front of me?
I finished typing as fast as I could, trying in parallel to not burst into tears. I controlled the boiling emotions bubbling up inside as I printed the letter again and handed it to him, not meeting his intense gaze.
“Not good enough,” the same viciousness and hate in his voice boomed back as he crumple the letter again. He was punishing me for my statement. He doesn’t like people talking back.
His attitude brought forth the rollercoaster of emotions inside of me to a standstill. The hurt and the tears bubbling like lava were repressed in an instance. Determination had an odd effect on me.
I typed the next letter faster than ever, focused to not making it error free. Printing it, I muttered a little prayer before handing it to him. This time meeting his eyes with the same intensity. Residual tears had dried away. I wasn’t scared. I was, two letters back but not anymore. What was the worst he would do? Fire me?
“Not good enough,” he said with a smirk attached on his face.
The rubber band that was my patience, snapped as I growled. “Then do it yourself or get someone else to.”
Anger would make you say and do stupid things. I was a living example of that. The entire office maintained a pin drop silence, watching how things escalated between me and Roger.
Mrs. Rose intervened, trying to defuse the situation. “Roger maybe I...” she said but the heartless beast of a man didn’t even let her finish her sentence, halting her words with his raised hand.
“No need..” he possessed a different tone now. The one I have not heard in a long time.
As he stared at me, I matched him. I could hear my ears ringing up my pulses.
He took the letter and walked away.
I fall back into my chair, the adrenaline rush inside my body faded. But the thrill of it all. God I swear, I would have punched that man, if he’d have crumpled this letter.
Mrs. Rose’s soft voice cut through my thoughts. Looking up I saw a concern swirl on her face. “Don’t ever try that... Again.”
I heeded to her warning. In the rush of adrenaline tossed with emotions, I completely forgot that if I were to be fired, it would be my life that would turn miserable while Roger would go on living a no care attitude one.
“Sorry Mrs. Rose, it won’t happen again." I whispered to her as she sat across, nodding and smiling. Her assurance, which which I badly needed.
The rest of the day went uneventful while the remaining office staff talked about the morning show.
“Hey babes,” the beautiful voice came across before I could see the actual person. Georgia was around.
“Hello there," I smiled as I finish typing pending mails.
“Did I hear it right. You went all ape shit crazy on Mr. Murphy?” her chuckles confirmed the talk of the office.
“It’s the other way round Georie."
“The word which is spreading around is something else.”
Well even bad publicity was publicity itself. Am I right? So if that put me on the map of people not to be messed around with, I would happily take it. I needed it. I couldn’t live an invisible life forever.
“Oh BTW, remember I wanted to tell you something,” she snapped her finger while coming around the corner of my desk.
“Yes yes. You couldn’t finish earlier."
“Well Philips was telling me that Roger was screwing Dalia yesterday,” her breathed words came out so low, I could barely register it
Ahh that made complete sense. Why won’t he. It was their arrangement after all. Or was it?
“And how does Philip know about it?” Somehow, I wanted to get confirmation. More like my heart wanted it. Innocent until proven guilty was applicable here too.
“He was walking past his office, when he heard it.. and afterwards Dalia came out of his office,” she signed her two fingers to overlap together, making me understand the connection.
I could understand and corroborate. Roger didn’t call me yesterday. He was busy frolicking with Dalia. I mean, why would you want to have phone sex when you can have actual one. Who wouldn’t prefer a busty woman spread open on the table for one to take.
“Wow that’s some news," I cleared my throat and mind from picturing them together.
“You are taking it quite well. My jaws were hanging till the floor when I heard it,” Georgia laughed in retort.
“I think it must be today’s face off with him. I am still reeling back from it." I defended my reaction to the day’s situation. The truth was only privy to me.
“Oh babes you did great, we are all proud of you,” she patted my back.
Proud. Sure. But would anyone of them support me, if I get fired for my little stunt?
By evening, I wrapped up my work to leave only to be stopped at my steps as I heard Mrs. Rose call out my name. Her face lighted up as I approached.
“Don’t worry about today,” she gave her usual confident providing smile. “Roger doesn’t keep grudges, unless it’s Brandon.”
Her words soothe the lingering fear inside of me. Calm flooded through me, knowing no irreparable damage was done.
Inside my apartment, I followed my usual schedule before dialing the operator. Within seconds, the call came through.
“Hello there," the routine began again.
“Hello.. I.. who.. are.. May I know?” a nervous voice cracked through the receiver
Goody. another first timer. The last first timer turned out to be my boss. But this wasn’t him. Roger was busy with Dalia. I felt a streak of anger rising inside of me, every time I thought of them together.
“Hey you can call me anything you want and tell me what you would want to be called." I reiterated the usual, boring introductions. “Also don’t tell me your name."
“I want to be called Superman,” the nervous voice came out confident as the caller stressed on the last word.
Of course you do honey. Boy around early twenties in age. Nerd who somehow spared 30 bucks to make the call and talk. Bullied at school or college and wanted to feel macho by being called the strongest by a woman whom he thought, was going to get laid by him.
Yes, I was good at reading people over calls too.
Before I could say anything, there was a distortion. A crackling.
“Hey hello can you hear me?" trying to control my laughter I said, “Can you hear me superman?"
It would make much more sense if I finished the sentence with ‘it’s me Louis Lane.’
The operator’s voice reappeared on the call. “Hello Arin.”
“Hey what happened to the call. Did it get disconnected?"
“We are patching you through to the new call.”
So it did get disconnected. The new call got patched through. Before I can speak, I heard it.
“Hello there, Babydoll.” There it was, his voice. Roger was on the call.
My brain tossed me scrambled instruction and I disconnected the call. My heart raced as I dial the phone operator, wiping the sweat beads formed on my forehead. I was talking to Superman. Where did Darth Vader appear from?
“Yes Arin. Is there a problem with the connection?” she inquired.
“Ahh no. I mean yes. I was talking to superman. What happened?"
She chuckled. “Sorry I don’t mean to laugh,” clearing her throat, she said, “We had to patch the new call as he asked for you.”
“That’s not how it works." With my voice squeaking up, I paced up and down my room, waiting for her to answer.
“He asked for you. He already paid for it.” She reasoned with me but I was already freaked out.
“Already paid. The payment is always post calls not pre calls."
“He paid 2 grand so we had to patch him through. Brace yourself. I am patching him again.”
As the call got through, I took a long deep breath, preparing myself for his voice.
“Hello master." I had to pull the words out of mouth. They didn’t emerge voluntarily in the light of the morning session in office.
“Good to hear your voice, babydoll,” his warm, intoxicating voice came through.
Yes right. Maybe Daisy was busy and so he had to call me. Still, he was paying so I had to be nice
“Same here master.. you did not call yesterday.. what happened?"
“Did you miss me babydoll?” smilingly, he breathed over and asked, probably knowing the answer himself. His voice emerged raspy in contrast to the morning which was commanding and scary.
Truth is, I did miss him. His talk and the way he made me feel. Till I realized it was him.. Him.. Roger fucking Murphy.
I was tossing in anticipation a whole night for his call while he was fucking the assistant. Now I didn’t feel anything. He lost his enchanting hold over me the minute I heard what Georgia had to say.
“No I did not master."
“Don’t lie babydoll. Remember I can know when someone..”
"..Lies over the call," I didn’t let him finish.
“Hmm.” His voice turned from husky to a whisper. “Quite a mouth you have babydoll. Unlike the first day.”
“Why.. you don’t like it when I talk back Master?” I really wanted to know.
“I love it when you talk back.. But you will also be punished for it,” the whispering was back with this reply and it both scared and thrilled me.
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