I have my armour on. Red lips, black blazer, and lethal heels; I am ready. Sat in front of the board, with my legs crossed and leaned back, I know full well that as they stare back at me, they don’t see my hands tremor, nor do they perceive the momentary ringing in my ears that drowns out their chatter. The memory of my mum’s nagging shocked me to reality. She always pointed out my nervous tells, which urged me to iron them out. I have the best poker face in the town.
Tuning back into the conversation, I immediately regretted it. The energy required to maintain this level of alertness and courtesy was beyond my endurance. Zeroing on to the speaker and taking in a deep breath, I focused.
“…So you can’t come here with your bleached highlights and new fangled ideas from flipping Devon and Cornwall and expect us to take you seriously!”
Ok, I’ve had enough of this poster child for patriarchy, and self-righteous, high horsed prick.
“Excuse you, Mr. Harbour, I will not have you harass our colleagues. I see you have yet to grasp the concept of debating, especially with such ad hominem arguments. Even though Miss Parmar’s bleached highlights have no correlation with her plausibility, we are your ignorance clearly does have an impact on your professionalism. I know we are all tense right now, but with the Silas Corporation owner coming to establish this deal, we must keep a cool head. This can take Exodus Corporations to new heights. I ask for your corporation and collaboration.”
Seeing Mr. Harbours’ face turn puce in my peripheral, I readjust the notes in front of me. My hands clammed up as the weight and gravity of this meeting settled firmly on my chest. After years of hustle, my company is on the precipice of glory…if we sign this deal. Don’t get me wrong, it was already highly profitable, and raking in revenue, but it needed to be next level. The partnership with Silas Corporation would give it that edge. I smile to myself as the words ‘world domination’ come to mind.
I turn left to the massive window and peered across the bustling London Metropolis, giving me a resurgence of confidence
I can do this.
I think I can do this.
Oh God! I really hope I can do this.
Wow, that didn’t last very long. I get up and feel the urge to start pacing but stop myself to not raise the nervous energy in the room anymore. So, I casually strolled to the window while not so casually panicking internally. At this point, there is no use trying to actually calm down, so I do the next best thing-fake it till you make it. Trust me this motto has gotten me through some rough times.
I inflate myself with this faux confidence and stand tall. Well, as tall as my 5’5 stature plus heels can get. I always wanted to be one of the tallest people in the room, it must be a nice feeling to tower over people, and commanding their respect wouldn’t be as hard as when I have to look up at people.
I hear the door open behind me and presume it’s my assistant placing water bottles or somethings-I still have 15 minutes till the meeting.
I turn around and come across the biggest surprise ever. Not the good kind. Not the bad kind. The kind that makes your heart race, your breathing falter and memories drown out time-present and past inextricable.
A flicker of recognition in his eyes, a longing so ephemeral that I almost didn’t see it. He took a step forward before he came to his senses.