“Miss Harper, please meet Mrs. Anderson, the new CIO of Bolt Investments.” Mr. Carson announced.
I stood up and extended a hand to the tall ginger haired woman, she looked like a stern no nonsense type of lady. I gulped at her presence.
“And this is your new executive assistant, Violet Harper.” Mr. Carson introduced me. She took my hand roughly and gave it a hard shake. Sugar, this woman’s grip was strong!
She smiled, her teeth a hint of yellow. “My poor assistant had to be demoted for me to sit at this office.” She hoarsely chuckled, the years of smoking apparent.
I lightly laughed, feeling quite guilty her assistant got pushed to the side. I slinked back into my seat. This was going to be a big change from Eric. And I wasn’t sure if I was going to pull through.
Maybe I needed a change too?
My mind wandered to him again. He said we could talk after the gala in a few days, but I struggled to wait. I knew I couldn’t bother him now, since he seemed so busy, attending meeting after meeting. I didn’t want to bombard him.
I sighed and fidgeted with my dove charm trinket. Mrs. Anderson and Mr. Carson was still in discussion, I politely excused myself and stepped out the office. I needed some fresh air. The moment I stepped onto the office floor; the air shifted. It was charged with commotion and excitement. You could feel the festivity. Everyone looked relaxed for the first time and eager for the gala. I breathed out and smiled, excitement crept in, it was contagious. Bolt Investment was waiting for months. People could dress up for the masquerade since it’s a formal affair. The disguises of the masks added to its mystery. What would the night bring?
I bounced to Penny and another female co-worker, beaming from ear to ear, they were standing by Penny’s desk sipping on tea. Penny smiled at my approach.
“What did you get this morning.” Penny asked. “You look happy.”
“I might be a little excited for the upcoming masquerade. Even though I will be on duty most of the evening.” I answered and leaned my arms against her desk. It did suck I had to work, but I was the only one who knew the planning lists, since I helped organize the event. “I want to see the fruits of my labor and see how the marketing team pulls it together.”
“Duhhh! It will turn out great and just look around, everyone is super excited about it.” Penny laughed and nudged me on the arm. “I already got a gown picked out, it’s emerald green. I want to feel like a queen on the evening.” Penny joked fanning herself.
I giggled. “I’m sure you’ll look amazing.”
Penny and the female co-worker talked cheekily about their gala gowns and embellished masks, Penny mentioned feathers while the other mentioned fake diamond studs. I didn’t even concern about my attire for the event, my mind to distracted to fully focus on it.
The conversation between the women seemed to drift away as my thoughts turned to Eric once more. I’m sure he’ll look handsome at the masquerade, chills danced down my spine at the thought. But the mention of Rebecca’s name from Penny’s mouth snapped me out of my fantasy.
“What about Rebecca?” I asked, completely missing the first part of her conversation.
Penny looked at me and frowned. “Rebecca... She’s Eric’s partner for the gala. They’re attending it together.” The pleasant chills down my spine turned cold and icy.
“Do you think Eric finally is making a commitment to her?” The female co-worker asked with raised eyebrows.
My eyes darted between the two curious faces of the women. “Nah. Eric is not a one-woman man, he’ll commit to no one.” My eyes stared at Penny.
“But isn’t bringing Rebecca a big statement?” the other countered. My eyes darting to her.
I looked at Penny. “Not really, how many models didn’t you see on the man’s arm. It doesn’t really mean anything if he doesn’t declare it officially.” Penny answered.
I sighed a relief. Yes, it means nothing, I agreed with Penny internally. Yet it will be torture to witness Eric and Rebecca together, my tangled emotions growing stronger at the thought of him. I sighed and placed my hand on the side of my face. My excitement slightly edging away.
“Violet, are you alright?” Penny touched my shoulder. I hadn’t realized the other female co-worker headed back to her desk.
I nodded. “Yeah, I’m fine, sure why?
She creased her brows. “You looked tense while we spoke about Rebecca, like there was a hawk prowling in the sky.”
I sighed and raised my arms in the air, contemplating if I should reveal my intentions or not to Penny. Sugar, how I missed Stacey right now. But I needed advice, another woman’s perspective. If I was going crazy or not. I bit my bottom lip.
“How do you ignore your feelings for someone, when you realize you might have fallen in love with him. Do you let him know or not?” I asked timidly.
Penny opened her mouth in shock, but closed it. She scrunched her eyes in thought and looked at me. I had a hunch she knew who I was talking about.
She sighed and touched my arm gently. “If you have something on your chest that needs to be let out, you have nothing to lose Violet, except a broken heart. Let him know your true feelings for him, but honestly, he might not reciprocate it.”
I nodded but couldn’t help but feel it was some kind of warning. “Okay, I hear you.”
“Good luck Vee.” Penny hugged me tight, and I leaned into it. It gave me the small courage I needed.
My legs drifted back to the office room, but my mind was torrent. I wanted to take the plunge and let Eric know my feelings once and for all. My heart might be a mess right now, a tangle of fondness, admiration, friendship, passion and yearning for him. But out of that maze something wonderful came out. Something strong developed. I just had to sort it through and let him know.
My mind and heart battled it out, professionalism versus love... and my heart won at the end.
At the masquerade gala, I decided. I will let him know. Not before and definitely not after. That will be the day.
How do I know the results if I don’t try, right? Rule no. 1, I had to throw myself out there!