Authors Note: We apologise for the delay with this chapter, but now that we are back on speaking terms, updates should be more regular. Enjoy!
Two minutes later, and Yuna could not put the meeting with Tidus out of her mind. Hastily, she dialled Rikku's extension. "Yup?" The girl chirped expectantly down the line.
"Rikku," Yuna began, trying--unsuccessfully--to sound normal. "When I arrived in from lunch just now, there was a young man down at the front reception that I didn't recognise. Do you know why he would be here?"
Even over the telephone, Yuna could hear Rikku's answering grin. "Lemme guess!" She giggled. "Blonde haired, blue-eyed, athletic Adonis who answers to Tidus?"
The filter between Yuna's brain and her vocal cords malfunctioned for a moment when the woman found herself replying simply: "That's him." The young CEO cringed the moment it slipped out. Rikku was bound to make an issue of the 'Adonis' comment.
By some miracle, Miss Sanning said nothing about it. But in the tone of a well trained professional replied: "Mr. Tidus Moon is your next appointment M'am"
Yuna held her breath for so long it was a wonder she could still breathe at all. "What do you mean?" She asked at length. "My next appointment is Mr. Joist and that's not for another half an hour."
"I slotted him in this morning when you refused to see him without an appointment. I left a message on your desk."
Yuna looked down at the post-it note stuck to the phone: Mr. Moon. -- 14:00. "Oh. Um… er, send him straight in when he gets up here please Rikku." Yuna told herself to remain calm.
"Alright." The girl answered. "You can go in now sir." Yuna heard before the receiver was replaced.
As he walked into the room, Yuna didn't even wait for Tidus to recognise her. She mentally squared her shoulders and jumped right in the deep end. "Why did you ask me for directions, Mr. Moon, when you clearly already knew where this building is?"
To his credit, the young man recovered from his surprise quickly, and gave her a sheepish grin. "If I'd known you were the boss around here I would never have tried that line."
"That was a line?" She couldn't keep the startled amusement from her voice. "In which case, Mr. Moon, you could do with some lessons."
"Are you offering?"
He was flirting with her! Even after he found out who she was and she had embarrassed him, he was still flirting with her! She pressed her lips into a thin line, determined to keep this meeting professional, and motioned Tidus to sit.
"How can I help you?"
Tidus noticed her cool tone immediately, and responded in kind as her lowered himself into the chair. "My father's dead."
Yuna's tender heart contracted in sympathy; if there was one thing she understood, it was the grief of losing a parent. "I'm sorry…"
"Don't be." His voice was flat, devoid of any emotion. "It's was a long time ago. The police said it was an accident. My mother refused to believe that, she thinks he was murdered."
Yuna thought for a moment, not wanting to sound callous but not wanting to waste time either. "Didn't the autopsy tell you anything?"
Grim-faced, Tidus shook his head. "There wasn't any autopsy."
"Noting to do it on. They've never found the whole body. All they ever found was a few belongings, some bloodied clothes and his left arm at the bottom of the river."
Yuna sat up in her chair, both shocked and indignant. "How can they possibly rule that an accident?" She asked rhetorically.
Tidus answered anyway. "He was a high risk jumper."
Yuna noticed the time on the clock. "I do want to help you Tidus." She explained. "But I have to get ready for my next client. Just ask Miss. Sanning to schedule another meeting and we'll continue then."
Tidus stood hastily, the smile back of his face. "Thanks."
"I'll see you in a few weeks Tidus." She said as he headed for the door.
At her words, the young man stopped in his tracks. "Weeks? I can't really wait that long."
"It's the best I can do. I have other cases, and I have to consider who is best to put on yours."
Tidus looked crest-fallen. "I understand."
Yuna wasn't happy about it either; she really did want to help him. Suddenly, a thought stuck her. "Can you come by tomorrow? Nine o'clock?" He nodded. "I have a meeting with my staff, we can discuss your case at the same time."
"Thanks, Yuna, I'll see you then" and then he was gone, and Yuna was alone in her office, totally unprepared for Mr. Joist. But somehow, she couldn't seem to care.
Authors Note: So the plot thickens, and we actually have the beginnings of a case. Let us know what ya think!