None of the original characters belong to me, unfortunately for me they're the creation of the amazing Stephenie Meyer. Everything else does belong to my imagination though! Hope you enjoy the first chapter and please please review.
Life for me, Isabella 'Bella' Marie Swan, has always been mostly about hard work. If I had to sum up my twenty-two years into one phrase, it would be 'Excellence and Success' – but then again, that's more like a motto instilled in me by my mother, Renee. You see, out of both my parents, my mother is more of the scatter brain yet that little quality of hers never came in the way of expecting nothing less than brilliance and perfection from me. However, say that aloud in the presence of Renee and you'll be given one of those looks which make you think "If only looks could kill", along with a whole lecture which will leave you feeling guilty for even thinking such a thing.
Perhaps if my parents had not split up when I was still too young to convince them otherwise, things would be different. My father, Charlie Swan aka Chief Swan, lives in Forks, Washington and for a brief period of time during my late teens, so did I. The thing is that Renee had decided that she was remarrying, and me being the teenager that I was, decided it was time to let her live her life in peace. Charlie is much more laidback than my mother, and as long as I was cooking his delicious meals, not doing drugs, not failing and not getting pregnant, I had the freedom to live however I wanted to. The sad part is that when you're used to getting nothing less than As and being close to so called 'perfection', it's not a quality that just fades away. It nags you constantly at the back of your mind and you just end up being brilliant like your mother always wanted you to be, just so that your dumb conscience shuts up and leaves you be.
Well, my conscience ended up getting me accepted into one of the top Business schools of the country, which is basically why I'm presently seated in a posh reception area in a skyscraper of downtown New York City. When you have a habit of excelling at what you do, chances are that you'll always excel. That's exactly how I was picked up by Coutters & Holloway, a powerful business empire. Well, I wasn't exactly picked (I'm not that brilliant) for a job, but I am here for an interview. If I impress them, I get to participate in a two-year internship program with my own mentor and all. Of course, I have to pay the company back for their so called 'kindness' by working with them for a minimum of six years – I don't really have an opinion on that yet.
Urgh I was tired of sitting in what I thought looked like a dignified position, with my now creased knee-length black pencil skirt. I was so irritated, especially since I'd spent ages in the morning, carefully ironing my white blouse and this skirt. It was now close to a whole hour since I walked into the room and was told to have a seat and wait by the leggy blonde who could have only been the receptionist. A good part of my hour had been occupied by internal snickering as to how clichéd and stereotypical the entire situation was. The whole leggy, extremely attractive, young blonde woman as the old, rich Assistant to the CEO's personal receptionist/secretary. But hey, at least her buttons were all fastened from her chest downwards.
Just as I was staring at her chest and trying to figure out whether her breasts were real or not, there was a little buzzing on her desk and she looked up at me. "Mr. Hillyard will see you now; he is waiting for you inside," her white teeth gleamed as she flashed a quick smile – if you could call it a smile. I glanced at the name plate on her desk before saying, "Thank you Lily" and pushing past the heavy, wooden doors leading into the spacious office.
The room was large and bright, a result of one of the walls being made entirely of glass. The glass wall faced the entrance and just in front of it, was a long, handsome table, which looked like an antique. It probably was too. I sat down on a chair directly before the table as three pairs of eyes stared intently at me, suddenly making me feel very self-conscious. An old man – perhaps in his early sixties – was seated in the middle. He was, I could only assume, Mr. Gregory Hillyard, for to my chagrin, unlike the reception outside, there were no name plates in this office. The supposed Mr. Hillyard had a head full of grey hair and a very pink face. Just fantastic! I was going to end up thinking of some really lame joke and having a giggling fit while attempting to answer a question for him. To his left, was a woman who looked older, yet she seemed like one of those women who were very beautiful in their youth. To the right of Mr. Hillyard, was a man who – surprise surprise – was old as well, although, he looked much older than both his associates. Was being old part of the requirements of this company?
The woman was the first to break the silence. Her voice was smooth, impersonal and full of authority, yet she managed to give off an air of comfort simultaneously. It was something I admired and was totally envious of; would I ever be able to do that? She introduced herself as Marion Coutters, which could only mean that she was either married to a descendent of one of the founders, or was a descendent herself. The other two men in the room followed her lead and introduced themselves as well. Although Marion was seated at a corner of the table, it didn't take a genius to figure out where exactly authority lay in the room. Somehow, the more time I spent in her presence, the more in awe I became of Marion Coutters. She was a woman of utmost power, something I could only hope to be one day.
The ancient guy to the right of Hillyard was Bradford Colfer and he really looked like he was going to drop dead any second. My mouth hurt from smiling politely continuously and I was grateful when they finally began the torture session. They took turns in asking questions, which I knew the answers to, but kept stumbling and stuttering on due to my ever jumpy nerves. It went on and on for at least an hour. Is there a specific reason behind your decision for this particular career path? What do you think you can offer this company as an individual? What qualities of yours make you a more suitable candidate for our offer? What is your opinion on the current merger deal this company is going ahead with? How do you think it will benefit us? What..blah blah blah blah blah on and on until eventually, "Well, Miss Swan," spoke Hillyard, "I must say that my associates and I are fairly impressed with your ideas. In all honesty, you are among a few of the interviewees who have left quite an impression upon us. That will be all for today and we shall be in contact with you in the next few days. Thank you for coming."
Did he really mean that? Or is that something they say to everyone just to seem enthusiastic? Oh God I wish I could look into his mind and see what exactly his genuine impression is. Out loud I said, "Not at all, the pleasure has been all mine. Thank you for giving me this opportunity and I look forward to hearing from you in the near future." And with that I carefully got up and walked out the door.
I was exhausted and the anticipation of my soft couch at home with a huge tub of ice cream was the only thing keeping me from officially going nuts. The elevator stopped for what had to be the millionth time and the doors opened. It was so annoying! I just wanted to get out of this God forsaken building. Surprisingly, there was nobody standing there and I sighed as I pressed the button for the doors to close. I shut my eyes, trying to hold in the migraine that was threatening to consume my head, when suddenly there was a small bang and the doors slid open yet again.
Opening my eyes to see what the hell was going on, my breath hitched in my throat as brown met green. I looked into the eyes of what had to be the most attractive man I had ever had the pleasure of meeting in my rather pathetic life. His beautiful, emerald green eyes never left mine as he entered the elevator and I felt like I was in a trance. He had bronze hair that looked so soft, I felt like just running my hands through it to see if it really was like that or not. It fell lightly over his eyes and he ran a large hand through it, pushing it back. As weird as it sounds, I couldn't help but associate him with a Greek God. He looked away and whatever hold he had had upon me was lifted. I looked down, blushing excessively and feeling incredibly stupid for reacting like that and hyperventilating like a silly teenage girl.
He turned back towards me and in an extremely seductive voice asked which floor I was heading to. It's times like these when I absolutely detest myself. If there was any inkling of justice in this world, I would reply with an equally attractive voice and complete confidence. If there really was justice I would reply with an equally attractive voice and complete confidence. But of course, I have no luck and there is no justice. No, instead, my voice comes out like a little squeak and he just turns away from me without further ado. The elevator is filled with the amazing smell of his expensive cologne and I feel like I'm getting drunk on the scent. Before I even realise it, the doors are sliding open and he's looking at me expectantly. "Ladies first," he says and I blush again. I attempt a smile at him as I pass by, but he doesn't return it. He just nods and I hurry away. Sweet Jesus please just make the earth open up and swallow me whole!