Pay no attention to...
The brushed off thoughts, swirling in my dreams.
The piercing sound of the alarm clock brought me back from sleep. I shook off the negative thoughts as I started to wriggle and stretch within my cozy, warm haven. I checked the clock, it was 6:00am. Perfect! I liked to be on time.
I jumped up from bed and dragged myself into the shower. I replayed the interview questions in my mind with the best possible outcomes as I washed my hair, the sweet aroma of vanilla easing my senses.
But my rejected thoughts made me feel jittery already.
Today was an important day, and I had no time to focus on inconspicuous feelings. It was my big interview at Bolt Investments Inc. I applied for the personal assistant position three days ago and they came back promptly. It wasn’t the position of my dreams, but it was a career move nonetheless. It would do for now.
Bolt Investment Inc. was a great company, one of the best finance corporations in Chicago. I had just moved here from Canada four months ago and still tried to settle in the big windy city.
I jumped out of the shower and got dressed in a navy skirt that stopped at my knees, and pulled on a clean white shirt, buttoning it to the top. I slipped on short white socks and pumps. I tightened my chocolate brown hair in my signature bun, with a path in the middle.
I wasn’t a fashion expert by all means, and paid no attention to it, since most people paid no mind to me. I looked at myself in the mirror, straightened my skirt, placed my dark blue rimmed spectacles on and gave a firm confident nod.
“You got this Violet!” I said, giving myself a quick pep talk with a smile. “Today you going to be seen. You going to be noticed, and those interviewers will pay attention.” You must be confident on occasions like this you know.
I checked my wristwatch.
“7:00am, right on time.” I thought out loud.
I grabbed my blue dotted notebook and double-checked todays interview.
PERSONAL ASSISTANT POSITION INTERVIEW at BOLT INVESTMENT INC.
Address: Cnr Main Street and Baker Ave, Chicago.
I pulled on my navy-blue suit jacket and slid my phone in its pocket. I walked briskly to the kitchen which was basically five steps away. My small apartment just catered a bedroom, a bathroom, kitchen and a tiny living room. There was no time to make breakfast. I grabbed an apple, my purple file, filled with my resume and qualifications, my car keys and headed for the front door.
The engine backfired from my aged light blue Ford as I started it up. It was an old vehicle, but it got me from point A to point B, that was enough for me. The old girl needed to warm up first. I stood a good ten minutes on the side of the street before driving.
My jittery nerves growing each minute.
The tall glass-like building came finally into view twenty minutes later. I couldn’t say the drive was easy. Unfortunately, I wasn’t the best driver and gave me anxiety every time I stepped behind the wheel.
I breathed a sigh of relief, thankful I made it safely. I stepped out of the Ford and surveyed Bolt Investment Inc. I researched it on Google and the images didn’t do it justice. The silvery building was large and tall, windows cascaded all around it, that looked more like mirrors. It reflected the light blue sky brushed with clouds.
For a medium sized company, they did extremely well. Apparently, the Chief Investment Officer was a well-oiled machine that took this small company to new heights, from what I’ve read in finance journals. Now Bolt Investments was a major player within the finance Industry. I couldn’t believe I could be working at a place like this. I applied for the personal assistant position online. But I didn’t know for whom, they didn’t mention it. But I didn’t care.
The possibility of working at such a prestige building excited me. I bit my bottom lip, hoping for the best. I turned on my bold smile and marched inside, not before tripping lightly on a step I didn’t see. Thankfully, nobody had seen me. But I quickly recovered myself, while repositioning my spectacles. I checked to see if my bun was still intact and proceeded.
The sliding doors automatically opened, as I stepped inside the cool reception area. I walked up to the friendly receptionist. Her nail painted fingertips typing furiously on her laptop’s keypad. Her black straight hair tied in a tight ponytail that trailed behind her shoulders.
“Good Morning.” I greeted politely.
The receptionist continued to type not glancing my way once.
How rude. Clearly not as friendly as I thought.
I cleared my throat.
I Will be noticed. I will be seen. I reminded myself.
“I’m Violet Harper and I’m here for the interview for the personal assistant position?” I said with my voice raised, but formal.
The cold receptionist looked up from her frozen fingers. Her icy gaze looked me up and down, an eyebrow raised. She picked up the telephone and dialed a number.
“A Violet Harper is here to see you, with regards to an interview?” she said coolly.
A moment later she placed the telephone down and looked up.
“Go up the elevator, to the fourth floor. Room 4B.”
“Do you know who I’m speaking to?” I asked nervously.
But the receptionist didn’t hear me or simply ignored and carried on typing away. I scowled internally as I walked to the steel elevators. My clammy hands pressed number 4. And the doors immediately opened. I entered to light music playing.
After five minutes, I stepped out of the elevators to be greeted to a long foyer with doors on the right and left side of it. Some were open, with talks inside, people either on the phone or in conversation, while some doors were completely closed. I held in my breath, clutched my file against my chest and walked to the office room 4B. The door was unfortunately closed to my dismay.
I shut my eyes and knocked timidly, but after no response I knocked louder.
“Come in.” A muffled voice came from inside.
I opened the door carefully, peeked through and walked inside the spacious well-lit office. A man and a woman were seated. The man sat behind his desk and the woman seated on a chair next to him on the right.
The man smiled at me. The top of his head was bald from his receding black hair. He wore a white shirt with grey pants. He scanned me from my pumps to the top of my tight bun. He looked at the woman dressed in a green suit, with grey short hair and nodded approvingly.
“Take a seat Miss Harper.” The man waved to the seat in front of his desk.
I gave a firm nod.
I glanced at the woman seated on the chair, but her face was buried in her notepad.
“My name is Todd Carson. I’ll be conducting the interview.”
My eyes turned to Mr. Carson and nodded self-assuredly. This was probably the man I would be assigned to if I got the job. I straightened my posture and placed both my hands firmly on my file. And gave a solid smile.
Mr. Carson looked over my resume with a quizzical brow. Nodded in a few places. And ticked with his black ball pen. I studied his reaction carefully, hoped I had impressed him thus far.
“So, Miss Harper. I see you have qualifications in Marketing Management and in Business Administration.” He nodded impressed, making my pride swell up. “You went to an all-girl private school, St. Theresa’s and you have three years in corporate experience. Impressive.” He said approvingly.
I smiled, feeling elated, my mind dancing on air. The interview was going okay.
“Tell me a little about yourself?”
“Well, I’m 24 years old. I come from Toronto, Canada. Where my parents still live. I’m an only child. I recently moved to Chicago, hoping to start a life and career here. My hobbies include, reading, studying, art -”
“Okay that’s plenty.” Mr. Carson said lifting his hand stopping me.
Sugar! I hoped I didn’t babble on; I could do that sometimes when I felt nervous. I bit my bottom lip, hoping I didn’t.
“Do you know anything about Bolt Investment Inc?” He asked.
“Yes, I do. Uhm, Bolt Investment Inc. hold and manage securities for investment purposes. The company also offers investors a variety of funds and investment services, including portfolio management. Their main investments the company usually deals with are stocks, bonds and bank products to name a few.” I said confidently. My mind re-capping its company’s website.
“Well done. You did your research.” Mr. Carson nodded with both brows raised. “Do you know Mr. Bolton?”
I frowned. “Not really, only that he is the Chief Executive Officer of the company.” My heart quickened at the thought of working for him.
“Yes, that’s Richard Bolton. Do you know his son, Eric Bolton?”
“The Chief Investment Officer?” I replied. My heart beating faster.
“Yes. And the man responsible for the company’s success.” Mr. Carson answered.
I nodded eagerly.
“Mr. Eric Bolton is a charismatic and motivated man, that sometimes gets sidetracked.”
I nodded. Not fully understanding where this was heading to.
Mr. Carson pressed his fingers together. “He needs somebody to ground him and that can get work done and... well, not be a distraction in any form.”
I nodded with a slight frown.
“Someone who has good organizational skills. Good interpersonal skills. Someone who can think.” Mr. Carson said seriously.
I nodded and swallowed hard.
Mr. Carson looked at me dead in the eye. “That someone is you, Miss Harper.”
I frowned, stuttering.
“You got the position. I got a good feeling about you.” He continued.
“The personal assistant position?” I said licking my lips.
Mr. Carson nodded approvingly and so did the grey-haired woman beside him.
I smiled a full set of pearly white teeth, feeling ecstatic that I bagged the job. “Thank you so much Mr. Carson sir, I won’t let you down, I’ll be your best assistant that you ever had.”
Mr. Carson and the woman seated chuckled. “No, my dear, you won’t be assisting me. You’ll be a personal assistant to the big boss himself. Mr. Eric Bolton!”
My eyes popped open at the name.
“Oh my, I didn’t expect to get promoted so quickly.” Giving a nervous laugh, not quite believing this was possible.
Mr. Carson extended his hand to me, and I took it. “Congratulations! You’ll make a fine executive assistant.”