Tall, Dark And DAMN!

***This post is dedicated to Noelle! Thank you for being so excited with wanting to be featured in my blog! You are awesome! Lynsday (Lyns) thank you for your email, your feature will come when the opportunity presents itself! Enjoy xo!***

I have Adam. I have Johnny. I have Paul Monroe (a.k.a the diva, Marilyn Monroe). And I have his friends. These were, so far, the people that would be there for me in a heartbeat in New York. So why I was I freaking out? Well, let me tell you. New York weather is fucking freezing; and I’m running like crazy to my first day at Balkin and Calder, one of the biggest book publishing industries in New York with other offices in London. They’re planning on expanding to a third undisclosed location (whispers have thought of Australia) and yet I still can’t seem to manage getting to their New York location on time. My first fucking day, and I was late. Late! It was like my first day of school as a kid, but since no one can blame my mother for my being late, it was all eyes on me.

And all eyes were on me. I was bursting into and out of the elevator and down the hallways to where the offices of the assistants to the editors were. When I found the place I noticed a large group suddenly fanning out from formation. The scattering of people made me realise I had missed a sort of orientation. The eyes that were on me could have been because of the fact that I was burning up from the sudden shift of temperature. I was now burning up, my face red and my nose running. I quickly took off my scarf and coat, hoping to air out my neck and chest. I know it’s strange, but I desperately wanted to take a sniff of my underarm just in case I smelled bad, but it would have been so awkward and weird. Not to mention I would have grossed out the entire floor, and have a story of my first day be held against me. Imagine the horror; I would forever be known as the girl that sniffed her armpit on the first day. The thought alone sent shivers down my spine.

“You look lost,” a woman said. She parted from the orientation crowd with a different sense of self-awareness, watching people dilute back into their desks with her hands behind her back.

“I came late,” I panted.

She lifted her blonde eyebrows. “Late to your first day on the job?”

I nodded, turning my head down shamefully. When I noticed people heard the woman, my humiliation heightened. Could she have said it any louder?

“I’m sorry,” I bit my lip, “it won’t ever happen again.”

Blondie sighed, pushing back her glasses at the bridge of her nose. “It’s not me you should be saying that to. Come on, I’ll show you around. My name is Donna by the way.”

“Anna,” I said. I know she was right and I was in the wrong, but I still got frustrated when she said I should be apologising to someone else. I couldn’t help it. Whenever I hear someone say that I automatically think I’ve overstepped my boundaries. I wonder if they wonder how I got here in the first place, and it annoys me. Then I realise I just need to suck it up and get over it.

“…and this is your cubicle,” she motioned to a little stall at the far corner of the room. The panels were light brown for three quarters of the way. The top quarter was transparent and I was able to see heads bobbling busily. It was a plain little place, but it just needs sprucing up. Easily handled. “Do you know who you’ll be assisting?”

I nodded and pulled out a crumpled piece of paper; unappreciative of her condescending tone, internally grumbling. “Mr. David Searles.”

“Great,” she pointed to an office adjacent from my cubicle, and a little closer to the windows. “That’s him right there. You should go say ‘hi’.”

I narrowed my eyes for a split second. “I was gonna.”

“And try not to be late again.”

“I wasn’t gonna.” Ugh! How can one person already piss me off today? In a publishing company I absolutely love, no less!?

I slacked back in my swivel chair and sighed. So far, my first day was a bust. I opened my eyes just in time to see that a cute guy was going to pass my cubicle. I quickly sat up straight with my legs crossed, one over the other. He saw me and smiled, nodding my way. I smiled back. When he completely passed my cubicle, I slouched forwards and let my torso hang. My head resting on my knee.

“You look awful,” a girl’s voice sprung in.

I flinched and flipped my head back. What the hell was wrong with everyone today? Is there a sign hanging from my back: attack at will?

“Huh?” I asked when she didn’t say anything.

She turned red and giggled. “I don’t mean anything by it. I just figured you must have felt the wrath of Donna.”

I twisted my mouth in disappointment and mumbled, “Donna.”

“Yeah, I wouldn’t take anything she says too personally. I’m hearing whispers that she didn’t get a promotion she’s been vying for for quite some time. She’s taking it very sourly. But,” she held her hands up palms open, “these are just whispers so you never know. Maybe people told me that to calm nerves.” Then she held out her right hand. “I’m Noelle by the way.”

I took hers and shook. “Anna.”

“I’m your new roomie Anna.”

Noelle, 24-years-old, has very long thick blonde hair almost to her butt (I didn’t even notice until she turned around; apparently, it was her trademark, and I can see why) and very light blue-green eyes. She was athletically built, but not too skinny, and has curves in all the right places. If I was batting for the other time, my God, she’d definitely be my first pick. Okay, I have to make a mental note to never say that out loud.

I smiled at the welcoming tone. It was so comforting to finally have a normal person greet me. “So I’m guessing you’re new, too?”

She nodded. “Yup. I actually took notice of you when you came in. you looked all flabbergasted and hot. Which reminds me…” She walked to her cubicle, and for a moment there I thought our conversation had prematurely ended. But then she came back with a little black bag, speaking in hush tones. “I don’t want to offend you or anything, but I know exactly how you’re feeling right now.”

“You do?”

She handed me the bag. “Please don’t take offence, just want you to have a good impression before you go into David’s office.”

I opened the bag and it was like praise the Lord, gold illuminated from within and chorus was singing hallelujah. I laughed. “Deodorant, Calvin Klein perfume and a makeup kit?”

“It’s my emergency case, just in case shit goes down. I anticipated my need for it today, which is why I bought it. I guess I’m safe though.”

Oh, my saviour! “Noelle,” I grinned, zipping the bag back up, “I think you and I are going to make one hell of a team!”

***

To loosen up, and celebrate my survival on the first day, Paul and Johnny were taking me out. The 230 on fifth was spectacular, to say the least. At the most, well, just give me an hour or two. Paul told me that he booked the penthouse space, what I didn’t anticipate was how extravagant that was. More than it sounded. I guess ‘on fifth’ should’ve been a big hint. And as I looked around, at the large windows; the purple and hot-pink florescent lighting; the blue, red, and violet large rounded couches; the electrifying bar with a lit silver grate for panels; I turned to Paul speculatively.

Paul smiled with a finger on his chin as he scanned the room. “Well? What do you think?”

The host, as soon as he was able to locate Paul’s name on the list, lead everyone to red velvet chairs next to the most beautiful view of New York City. At night, it was like frozen fireworks hanging in the air and brushing the buildings.

“Paul?” I said, he turned his attention onto me. “How did you get this room?”

Paul shrugged. “I have my ways.”

“Paul?” I quickly warned.

“Okay, okay, fine. This is as much of a celebration for as it is for me.” He paused and I waited. “I got bank on a new gig. Other people chipped in of course, just so I don’t go completely broke.” He jutted his brows up and down, and grinned.

“Paul…” I started to smile proudly.

“Marylin Monroe is going places people!”

Everyone shouted and whistled, blowing air kisses in Paul’s direction. It had been a private joke of theirs; whenever air kisses were blown at a person, that person would close their eyes, lift their head back and shake as if they were in a commercial for shampoo.

“Congratulations,” I hugged Paul.

“You too, honey!”

“Yeah, congratulations,” a rugged voice behind me said.

By Paul’s smiling face I knew it was someone friendly. I turned and saw Johnny holding out his arms. I leaned in. “Thanks, Johnny.”

“You’re welcome. First days always suck.”

“Well, generally.”

“Mostly,” Johnny said, lifting an eyebrow.

I rolled my eyes. “Okay, mostly.” I nudged him and somehow it turned into an awkward nudging match, until the both of us fell onto the couch, laughing. Half in embarrassment, and half with joy.

“I’m going to go order us some drinks,” Paul said. “What do you guys want?”

Johnny shook his head. “You know I don’t drink, Paul.”

Paul clicked his fingers together in faux realisation. “Oh I forgot, you’re the only bartender I know that doesn’t drink.”

“You don’t drink?” I asked Johnny.

“It’s not so unheard of, ladies,” Johnny said.

Paul and I laughed, and I gave him my order. After which, Paul took everyone else’s before dissolving into the penthouse 230 crowd.

“What kind of bartender doesn’t drink?” I asked. “Is that some fen shui thing?”

“Yes, I like to treat my body like a temple,” he joked, making me giggle. He smiled. “No, no, I just don’t feel like I need to drink to have a good time.”

I nodded. “A wise and admiring choice.”

“Yes, they should have something named after me.”

“Like a building,” I suggested.

“Or maybe they should make a statue of me,” he said, playing along.

“You’d be placed in a conspicuous area for all to see.”

“Yes, I’d be in one of those nineteenth century gallant positions. My mom would be so proud.”

We laughed and sunk back into the couch, teetering off into more conversation. Two drinks into the night, Noelle finally came.

“I hope you don’t mind,” I said to Paul when she wasn’t in hearing range.

“Your fends are me fend, Annie,” he slurred. “It’s totes fine.” The time it took for me to half my second drink, pretty much everyone else was drowning. I just hope we don’t get kicked out; but it seemed like that wasn’t going to happen considering they were handling their liqueur amazingly well.

“Noelle; Johnny, Johnny; Paul,” I gestured between them.

Noelle pulled a strand of hair back behind her ear before she took Johnny’s hand. Johnny seemed like he forgot about me when Noelle came. Or was it just in my head?

“Hi,” Johnny said.

“Nice to meet you,” Noelle replied.

“Same here, love. What’re you drinking?”

“Oh, umm,” she looked at the glass in my hand, “I’ll just have what you’re having.”

“What is it that you’ve been drinking?” Johnny asked.

“That’s fine, I’ll just go get it myself. I can use the walk,” I chuckled at my lame joke. It hit no one so I was left laughing all by myself, my voice fading awkwardly. “Well, I’ll go now, then.”

The space was so large that it practically felt like a good walk, I’m not even joking. This place is huge! Floating across the room, the scenery made me feel like I was tripping on some psychedelic drugs and all these colours were swirling. It was actually pretty cool; Kudos to Paul.

“Excuse me, miss?” a man said. “Excuse me, excuse me, miss?” Instinctively I slowed down at the first call, but then it kept getting stronger and I noticed a man in a suit staring at me, holding up his index finger and motioning me forwards.

I looked back to see if anyone was behind me because it would be a story to tell if I was mistaken and I just went up to a random stranger as if he knew me. But there wasn’t anyone behind me. I wasn’t mistaken.

Hesitantly, I approached him. “Yes?”

“Where’s my drink?”

I paused for a moment. “What?”

“My drink. Where is it?”

“Sorry, Sir I—”

“Listen, I’m not even paying you to talk. Just tell the bar I want my drink. Or am I supposed to approach the bar.”

I shrugged, not knowing what to do. I could barely get a word in, what the hell? How could he mistake me for a worker here, I wasn’t even wearing a vest. Except maybe because I was the only female wearing a buttoned up long sleeved white shirt. He sighed and stood. The man was dark-skinned and so tall he was towering over me. He filled out his suit perfectly that underneath I knew he was built like the Empire State. He wore a buzz cut hair do, and had very thick lips. That was one of the best parts about African-Americans, among other things their lips were full, perfect for locking lips. He would’ve been hot if it weren’t for the attitude.

“How about we go to the bar together, so you don’t forget about the table you’re serving.”

“But I—”

“Bup-bup-bup,” he held up his index finger, refusing to let me speak. “Let’s go.”

Oh, this is going to be good. I cannot wait for this man’s revelation, it will be epic. So I lead him. I didn’t even call the bartender over, Mr. Tall Dark and DAMN did that for me. I guess he doesn’t want me to speak. Like, ever!

“Excuse me, I’ve been waiting for some drinks for my table, and the light of day hasn’t come yet. This lady seems oblivious as to what I’m referring to, so would you make sure you fill her in?”

“Sir!” the bartender called out as the man left. The man turned and came back. I had to bite my lip from keeping a snug smile from appearing.

“Yes?”

The bartender stared at me, confusedly. “This woman does not work here.”

I peered up, he was avoiding my gaze the whole time. “What?”

“She is a patron of one of the seating areas at the windows, overlooking the city.”

The man looked at me, even in this trippy light, I could see his jaw ticking. And I started giggling. “I tried telling,” I shrugged. I placed my order with the bartender, and stepped away.

“Umm….I—”

“Bup-bup-bup,” I said, holding up my own index finger as he did before. “I’m not paying you to talk,” I grinned.

He tucked his hands in his pockets and smiled, nodding in acknowledgement that he deserved that as I walked away.

I returned to my own party and felt more at home than ever; the music changing to a remix of Missy Elliott’s song I’m Really Hot. Perfect for a walk out. Paul was more drunk than I’d ever seen him, and Noelle and Johnny were getting along as if they were born to find each other. Noelle was more infatuated with Johnny than he, but I knew exactly just how she felt. I think he’s used to having girls fall for him.

“They’re coming with the drinks,” I said. “You won’t even believe what just happened to me.”

I was too involved in telling them the story that I hadn’t even realised Mr. Tall Dark and DAMN was towering over me again. This time I felt smaller than actual size because I was sitting down. Hey, no complaints, the bigger the better. And this guy was big!

“Sounds like my legacy precedes me,” he said.

“You can make it up to her by buying us a bottle of Merlot, man,” Johnny said. Noelle laughed and slapped him on the chest.

Tall Dark and DAMN nodded, expectant of the thrashing. I stood for mercy’s sake and took a few steps away from the group.

“Yes, Sir? Is there anything else I can help you with?” I asked, smiling.

The man chuckled. “Look, the name’s Christopher Wallace. I came here to apologise. I’m real sorry for being, for lack of a better word, an asshole.”

I shrugged. “Sounds accurate to me.”

“Oh, come on, it was an honest mistake. I’m sorry. And I will tip big tonight.”

“I found that threat highly offensive by the way,” I joked.

“I have no doubt. You bartend?”

“I used to.”

“Then you know,” he smiled. I nodded. “Look,” he continued. “I’d like to make it up to you.”

I chuckled, rolling my eyes. “You don’t have to buy us a bottle of Merlot.”

“No, no,” he laughed, “just you. I would like to take you out some time.”

I furrowed my brows. “You’re asking me out? Is this a joke?”

“Not at all.”

I crossed my arms. “Now why would I go out with a guy that just mistook me for a waitress and had the nerve to follow up?”

“Well, because I feel like the biggest asshole and you seem like the sweetest girl that didn’t deserve that. I can show you a time worth your while, if you allow it.”

Sweetest girl? I’m not sure about that. But I was definitely going to make him work for it; wasn’t about to let him off that easy. I got a napkin and a pen and wrote my number down.

“Does this mean that’s a ‘yes’?”

I handed him the napkin. “This means, I don’t know so ask me again tomorrow.”

“So long as there’s a bottle of Merlot, right?” he grinned.

I laughed. “Only the finest; an important detail.”

***Hi again! If you haven’t already, or if you really like the stories and want to read them again, please check out my short sexy stories I have submitted for the Cosmo contest! Black Silk, Under Your Skin, Side Effects Of The Grin-Of-Pleasure, and A Quick Drop And A Sudden Stop! Also, a picture of Christopher Wallace will be up on my twitter page soon! Be sure to follow me! Thank you so much for all the love and support; once again, I hope you all very much enjoyed this (very long) post! Lots of Love, Soul xo***

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