A/N: This was originally planned to be a contest entry. I missed the deadline, but Edroar just wouldn't leave me the hell alone. He's a TYRANT! And so this tale begins….
*DISCLAIMER: Stephenie Meyer owns Twilight…I'm just a girl with no life.*
If the person you are talking to doesn't appear to be listening, be patient. It may simply be that he has a small piece of fluff in his ear.
- Winnie the Pooh
"Good luck Bella!" Angela called out to me, nervously, as I closed the door to our apartment.
I was headed to my first day on the job, as Edward Cullen's personal massage therapist. Apparently, that was something I was going to need lots of luck with. I heard the countless stories about Mr. Cullen, though most of his employees called him Edroar the Angry Lion, behind his back of course.
That was the name of a children's book a group of authors at Cullen Publishing anonymously wrote about him...with a poison pen.
It was the story of an angry lion, named Edroar, who used his mighty roar to frighten everyone away, leaving him sad and alone in the jungle. The underground story was a favorite amongst his employees.
According to Angela, the book was practically biographical, since Mr. Cullen would literally roar at his staff when angered, causing all the girls and boys at Cullen Publishing to scamper off shivering in fear.
From what I'd been told he caused at least two girls to flee his office in tears each week.
Angela was usually one of them. I couldn't imagine what she could possibly do to anger him. That girl was as sweet as sugar, and had the patience of a saint.
Unlike me, who always seemed to earn the reputation of being 'the bitch'. I often wondered why women were automatically considered a bitch if they weren't sugary sweet.
It had always been that way for me. I just didn't have it in me to be warm and fuzzy. I never squealed in delight, gave air kisses to my friends, or giggled innocently at a cute boy.
I was much better known for my crude gestures and devilish snickers. Locker room humor always made me laugh the hardest. There wasn't much that could make me blush.
Even my best friend Jasper gave up trying to find my softer side. He loved to tell me I had the face of an angel…and the mouth of a sailor.
I wouldn't say I was quite that bad.
It seemed my personality was a major turn off for most guys. So after a totally disastrous dating record, I decided it was time to end my search for Mr. Right. I finally figured out that some girls were just meant to be alone.
So there I was, driving to Cullen Publishing, at the crack of dawn, Pink's voice blasting from my radio, a Red Bull in my hand. I was freakishly sensitive to caffeine. I hardly ever touched the stuff, but I wanted to be on full alert that morning.
I took a deep breath and exhaled it slowly, centering myself. I wondered what the day would bring. One thing was for sure, it would bring a paycheck, which I desperately needed.
I couldn't let Angela pick up my share of the rent. Lucky for me the job came along at the perfect time.
When I first met Angela, I was just another starving artist. Back then, we worked together at the Cherry Street Coffee House. Occasionally I sang at local clubs, and by occasionally, I mean rarely.
It was hard to get a decent gig in Seattle without a connection, and I refused to sell out and work weddings and bat mitzvahs.
Alright…I may have worked a wedding or two, but it was just for networking purposes, I swear. It didn't take long for me to realize I needed a Plan B.
That's what massage therapy was for me. After slinging coffee for two years, I took some courses to be a massage therapist. You know…just in case I needed something to fall back on.
It was now four years later, and I finally accepted the fact that Plan B had somehow turned into Plan A.
Meh…Who needs fortune and fame anyway, I chided, as I turned the radio all the way up.
Music was always more like a religion for me. To capitalize on something so sacred just felt wrong. At least that's what I told myself when I finally decided to give up my dream of being a professional singer.
But that didn't stop me from indulging every now and then, the rock star inside me was still alive and kicking, and sometimes she just had to be heard.
As a matter of fact, it was just as Pink and I were in the middle of a pretty kickass rendition of Don't Let Me Get Me that the always polite and patient voice of my GPS announced that I arrived.
Why…yes I certainly have.
The employment agency told me the building was 'quite nice'. Clearly, that was an understatement. Sleek waterfalls and cascading fountains decorated the exterior of Cullen Publishing's palatial headquarters.
Bright and colorful flowerbeds enhanced the already stunning grounds. I think I even saw a butterfly smile at me as it flew by my window. It looked like the Disneyworld of Washington for Christ's sake.
When I parked my truck I got a few odd stares.
Yeah, it was a big red hunk of junk, so what, it had personality. If I had a dollar for every Beamer or Benz I saw on the road, I'd be a millionaire. My truck was one of a kind, an original. If it were a painting, it would be the Mona Lisa.
Maybe it wasn't very pretty, but it was priceless to me. After blowing a few obnoxious kisses to the snooty parking lot gawkers, I made my way to the human resource department.
The inside of the building was just as mythically charming as the outside. Sparkling chandeliers and magnificent portraits of exotic landscapes trimmed the halls.
I quickly checked my appearance in the mirror that framed the elevator, and frowned at the state of my hair. I usually liked to keep it up when I worked. I stood there glaring at my stringy brown hair, willing it to behave.
The elevator opened and a group of corporate twenty-something's filed out chattering to one another. I patiently waited for them to pass by before I got in.
As the elevator whisked me away I kept my eyes focused on the numbers rising steadily above the doors.
I really hoped this day wasn't going to be as horrible as Angela prepared me for. Surely I could handle the overbearing, white collar, bully that she described to me in graphic detail on numerous occasions.
I remembered the look of concern on her face when I told her I got the job as Mr. Cullen's massage therapist.
Angela told me about the position, so I guess she somehow felt responsible if things were to go badly. Even though I assured her over and over again that there was nothing to worry about.
That girl worried about everything… again… unlike me.
It seemed I was always calming her down, over insignificant things, a traffic ticket, a first date, a lost shoe. I often wondered if she'd consider taking Xanax. Angela worked at Cullen Publishing for five years, they hired her directly out of college and not to boast, but she landed some pretty well known authors for them.
Now it was time I made a mark for myself.
I exited the elevator, and found my way to the office of Miss Denali, head of personnel. I knocked on her door and was warmly greeted by a tall slender woman with light blonde hair.
"You must be Isabella, welcome, thank you so much for coming in on such short notice. I'm Tanya," she shook my hand vigorously.
When the employment agency called to offer me the position that Friday, they asked me to start work on Monday, which was fine by me. I was just about down to my last dollar.
"You can call me Bella. Really, it's no problem at all. I'm glad to be here."
I was very glad to be there. They were paying me practically twice as much as my last job. I worked at a small spa, Happy Hands. It was pleasant enough and walking distance from my apartment.
Unfortunately, due to mismanagement they went out of business. I enjoyed being a massage therapist, even more than I expected. I didn't talk to my clients very often, yet they still felt a deep connection to me.
I was never good at small talk. Though I always had a morbid curiosity to find out what made people tick. It always amazed me how much I could learn about someone just by giving them a massage.
Tanya clapped her hands in delight. "Excellent, the agency sent me your paperwork so I won't need you to fill out too many forms." Her tone was bright and cheery. "Oh, and don't worry, I won't bore you with the company's introduction video. How about you promise me you'll watch it on our web site." She winked.
"Yes, of course I will." I gave a playful wink in response.
I liked her. She seemed like a girl that didn't take life too seriously. I got the feeling she knew how to have a good time.
"Take a seat Bella, and we'll go over a few things." She ushered me into her office, closed her door, and returned to her desk.
I sat down and instantly started looking around the room for photos and other personal objects. I was a snoop by nature. It was something I just couldn't control.
"So, I assume the agency went over the job responsibilities with you, but I'd like to discuss them to avoid any confusion." She explained as she sat down.
"Sure." I leaned back in my chair. It was warm, as if someone had just been sitting in it.
"Your main responsibility above all else, is to provide Mr. Cullen with massage therapy. He's actually quite militant about it." Her tone became more serious. She crossed her long, sun kissed, legs and spun her chair a bit so she was directly facing me. "He'll expect two to three massages per day depending on his mood. Always one at eight a.m. sharp, the other two are based on his schedule. You'll need to confer with his personal assistant quite often." She shuffled some papers around on her desk, as though she were looking for something. "Did the agency mention travel, I hope?"
"Uh...yes. They said I was expected to travel with Mr. Cullen as needed."
"Okay great, that's a big relief, that's posed a problem for us in the past," then she mumbled, "among other things," under her breath.
"Actually, I'm really looking forward to traveling. I'll gladly leave Seattle any chance I can get."
I lowered my eyes, feeling slightly ashamed to admit that I'd never actually been out of state before. The farthest I'd been away from Seattle, was the tiny town of Forks. Which, I left the day after I graduated high school…vowing never to return.
"Seriously, you have no idea how great it is to have you here, Bella," she was still shuffling through papers as she spoke. Then she stopped abruptly and sternly said, "Now, I must warn you, Mr. Cullen is a tough man to work for. Though he's fair and actually quite generous to his employees, but be advised his expectations are high." Her big blue eyes emphasized the seriousness of her statement.
"Thanks for the warning, but I don't think it will be an issue for me. I plan to do my job to the best of my ability." Even I was impressed by how clear and confident my voice sounded.
She just smiled at me and nodded her head approvingly.
"And don't worry, I'm not looking to be his friend." I added with a sly grin.
"Well good, because that's highly improbable." She paused. "Actually, more like impossible really." She let out a small chuckle. "Oh, forgive me that was very inappropriate." She quickly covered her mouth.
"Pfft. Pleeease." I waved my hand in front of my face briskly. "If there's one thing I can't stand, it's an appropriate conversation. It's actually pretty refreshing to find someone in the corporate machine that isn't uptight and stuffy." I admitted honestly. "Hopefully it's not highly improbable for us to be friends?" The poor girl looked so worried about making a simple little joke about the dreaded Mr. Cullen.
"I can see already, that will be more of a sure thing." She tilted her head to the side and grinned warmly at me. "I hope you'll come to me with any concerns you may have here."
"Hopefully I won't need to bother you, but thanks, I will if I need too."
"Oh, one more thing, I almost forgot." She pointed a perfectly manicured finger at me. "We're going to try something new with you. Previously your services would strictly be available to Mr. Cullen only. During the time he wasn't receiving a massage his therapist was literally sitting around just twiddling her thumbs." She twiddled her thumbs to demonstrate what I would be doing.
Tanya glanced at me from the corner of her eye, and her smile broadened as she continued, "Mr. Cullen recognized the unproductive situation this created," she hesitated, as if she were about to reveal some really exciting news. "Given that the massage room is centrally located in our health club, Mr. Cullen decided to offer massage therapy on a trial basis to the rest of the company," she announced triumphantly, as though he had cured cancer.
The agency hadn't mentioned that to me. I took a moment to calculate how it could possibly work.
"I have a question," I interrupted before she could continue.
"Yes of course."
"Well… not that I don't love what I do, but I couldn't help but notice the large workforce here and if I'm the only massage thera-"
"No...no, oh god, I'm so sorry. I didn't mean to imply that you'd be a personal massage therapist for the entire company." She was shaking her head as she spoke, to further confirm her words, "We have well over a thousand employees. We'd need over a hundred of you to compensate our workforce."
I leaned back in my seat, imagining the kind of trouble a hundred of me could get into.
"I should have made clear that getting a massage from you will be part of an incentive plan, to improve moral. Trust me it will be no easy accomplishment." She stated with certainty. "I assure you only the brightest and most tenacious employees are rewarded at Cullen Publishing." Her hand was up, as if to solemnly swear.
I gave a wry smile.
"This plan will serve two purposes actually. It will be a motivational tool for the staff, as well as keeping you busy in your downtime."
Tanya was beaming so much I wondered if the incentive plan had actually been her idea.
Her face grew troubled. "I must tell you, Mr. Cullen has warned, this must not in any way hamper your performance or infringe on his needs, which must always remain your top priority." She did a slight impersonation of him during the warning, though I don't think she realized it.
"Oh, well that sounds reasonable," I paused a few moments before reluctantly adding, "I've never actually worked as a personal massage therapist before, and honesty I was thinking how odd it might be to have just one client."
She brought her finger to her chin and thought about what I said. "Yes, I can see your point. Just please remember that Mr. Cullen comes before all others." Her full lips made a slight frown. "If he's unhappy…everyone's unhappy." She began to roll her eyes, and then seemed to catch herself.
She cleared her throat nervously, handed me some forms to fill out, and led me to a desk in the reception area of her department with instructions to knock on her door as soon as I finished.
It didn't take long to complete the forms. The standard crap. Corporate America was like one giant cookie cutter to me.
Same old… same old
I couldn't bitch about it though, that would be hypocritical, because there I sat, selling myself out for the money. It was damn good money too.
I let out a gloomy sigh, thinking of how disgusted my inner rock star was with me for not sticking it to 'the man'.
I knocked on Tanya's door, she was there in an instant, took my papers, and tossed them onto her cluttered desk.
"Alright then, I'll give you a brief tour of the building before I bring you to Mr. Cullen." Her smile was dazzling.
Man, were her teeth blindingly white. I had yet to find a physical flaw on her. Normally, that fact alone would cause me to hate her intensely, but I just couldn't do it.
The next hour was spent mingling with various personnel. They seemed friendly enough. Inviting faces and warm pleasantries were showered on me. It was all very cheerful until Tanya gave them my job title.
The minute she told them I was Mr. Cullen's, personal massage therapist it was as though she said I had a terminal illness.
"Oh…I'm sure you'll be fine." One girl said, with a worried look on her face.
"Hang in there." Cried a small, dark haired, woman, as she hugged me tightly.
I couldn't help but wonder, what was with these people, being so frightened of one man.
She led me away from the cluster of cubicles we were in, and down a long corridor.
"Are you ready to meet the big guy?" Her long legs moved swiftly down the hall. She gave a friendly wink to the mail carrier as we passed him by.
"I guess about as ready as I'll ever be. Is he expecting me?" My brow creased curiously, and then I realized what a moronic question that was.
No Bella, he's not expecting you…you're a surprise massage therapist.
"I mean…expecting me right now. Do I have an appointment to see him?" I quickly elaborated, hoping I didn't come off as nervous.
Honestly, I wasn't nervous…much. Maybe a bit apprehensive, but who wouldn't be? I was about to meet my new boss, and I seriously needed the job.
Whether I liked it or not, I knew I had to make a good impression. Not that I wasn't up for the challenge. Frankly, my competitive nature had been at full throttle from the moment I was warned about Mr. Cullen's high demands.
I mentally shrugged off my apprehension.
Tanya said he's fair
"Yes, you have an appointment with him, and you'll be right on time." She spoke softly, clearly trying to ease my mind.
She glanced at her watch. "There's still some time before the health club opens. Now, as I said before, he'll expect his massage at eight sharp," Again with the stern voice. "You'll report straight to the club tomorrow morning." She flashed me another blinding smile as she pressed the call button on the elevator. "Since it's your first day, I'll send someone to show you around the club when it opens. I think you'll find the atmosphere there slightly different."
A few moments later the elevator dinged and we were off. As the doors slid shut, Tanya was already chit chatting with the people around us.
I gave out a few friendly grins, and used the time to prepare myself.
After some contemplation, I decided that even though I'd heard disheartening things about Mr. Cullen, from a very reliable source, I was going to form my own opinion of him.
I thought again about how I was always labeled 'the bitch'. I certainly wouldn't want anyone to form an opinion of me solely based on other people's judgment.
So, as we rode the elevator up to the top floor, I mentally cleared the slate, giving my new boss the same respect I wanted others to give me.
Before I knew it we were making our way to the main reception area of the executive suite. Did I mention he was the CEO of the company?
It was crazy, me of all people, working for the CEO of a major corporation, a girl that still stored her money inside a stuffed penguin.
Another valiant attempt on my part to cripple big business.
Tanya was stopped briefly by someone to make lunch plans. I didn't hear a word they were saying. Actually, I think I may have had a brief, out of body experience as I soaked up the dreamlike quality of the executive suite.
There were no outer walls to it, only massive windows that served as a gateway to a breathtaking view of the rolling meadow that surrounded the property.
The opulent furnishings gave it a regal look, while somehow still maintaining a modern vibe.
It was all I could do to keep my mouth from hanging open, or my eyes from widening like a child on Christmas morning. It wasn't the colossal display of wealth that had me so entranced.
Believe me, I was far from being a materialistic person. I'd gladly choose dinner at a local pub over a five star restaurant any day.
I'd much rather give my hard earned cash to the struggling owner of a small business than to stuff the wallets of the fat cats of the world, but I had the heart and soul of an artist.
I was deeply affected by beauty wherever I saw it. Whoever created this space had a brilliant and imaginative mind. I stood there simply awed by it.
A lively voice pulled me from my astonished haze.
"Hey Tanya, you're right on time as always." Her smile was playful, and everything about her screamed 'I'm fun and trendy'. "Girl, those shoes are to die for!" The petite girl cried out, while glaring at Tanya's feet. "I'm jealous!"
She actually pouted like a child for a moment with her arms crossed. There was a distinct sparkle about her, as if her mere presence alone increased the energy in the room substantially.
"Thanks, but my shoe fetish is steadily becoming more of a problem really. It's threatening to drain my bank account." Tanya sniped, while lifting the heel of her shoe and narrowing her eyes at it, as though it were the enemy.
We chuckled and then all eyes were suddenly on me.
"This is Miss Brandon, Mr. Cullen's personal assistant." Tanya explained, genially.
"Oh Tanya please." The woman huffed exuberantly. Her bangs flew up from the burst of air she let out. "When has anyone ever called me Miss Brandon? I won't allow it. It's Alice… and you must be Isabella?"
Her animated expressions were killing me. She was hysterical, but I didn't want to laugh in her face, so I desperately fought to hold it in. I struggled with laughter control issues my whole life.
"Yes, but please call me Bella." I awkwardly offered her my hand to shake. She took it and pulled me in for a quick hug instead.
"I'm delighted to meet you, Bella. We'll be spending lots of time together you and I." She smirked, knowingly.
Tanya touched my arm lightly. "Girls, I have to run. Enjoy your first day Bella, and don't hesitate to contact me if you need anything at all." She waved good-bye as she rushed to grab an open elevator.
"Thanks." I called out as the doors closed.
Before I could even turn around, Alice grabbed my hand, and whisked me away.
"Okay, let's get you to Mr. Cullen's office before it's too late." She scrunched her nose, as though she didn't even want to think about what could happen if we were too late.
"Too late?" I wondered aloud.
"Yes, you'll soon learn our boss has no tolerance for tardiness. I learned that lesson the hard way." She let out a cute little sigh.
"Oh, that's fine. I'm always on time."
"Well that will certainly save you a lot of trouble around here. Come on, he's waiting for you."
As Alice led me down the hall, I nosily turned my head to peek in each room we passed. Soon we faced a rather large set of double doors.
She abruptly stopped and whispered, "Your best bet is to nod often and say as little as possible to him. That's what everyone else does, and it works out quite well…for the most part." She seemed to be rehashing an unpleasant memory in her mind.
She lifted her hand and knocked on the door three times.
After a few moments I heard a deep voice commanding us to enter. Alice quickly opened the door, leading me by the hand to the front of a large mahogany desk.
She put a hand on each of my shoulders, and announced joyfully, "Mr. Cullen, this is your new massage therapist, Bella Swan."
There was complete silence for an uncomfortable amount of time. I didn't want to blatantly stare at him, yet my nosy nature couldn't help but to eye this infamous man quite thoroughly.
It may sound weird, but the first thing I noticed about him was his hair. It just seemed to contradict all else around him.
You couldn't … not… notice it.
It was completely disheveled. Strands of it were poking out in all directions. Even the color of it was unclear. I saw shades of brown, gold and even touches of bronze sweeping through it.
Curiously my eyes moved lower, down to his face.
I flinched from the fierce look his haunted green eyes were giving me. Instinctively I turned away from the sheer intensity of his fiery gaze.
It felt like he could grab me…with his eyes.
I watched the floor for a few moments, and then my eyes were drawn back up to his once again. I blinked rapidly, and continued to explore. I made my way around the outer edge of his face, noticing the strong masculine cut of his jaw line. It looked like it was etched in stone, almost inhuman really, except I could see the light stubble on his pale, white, skin.
My eyes flickered over to his lips, tightly pursed, and I could tell from the moment I saw them, they were used as a weapon to unleash whatever lurked within.
I carefully scanned his desk, and noted how organized it was. I don't mean just neat. Only a person suffering from some form of OCD could orchestrate such order.
"Miss Swan." His velvety smooth voice uttered, finally acknowledging my existence.
I held my breath as I felt the crushing power of his dominating eyes scan over me inquisitively. I had no idea if he expected me to respond to him. So I took Alice's advice, and simply nodded my head.
It seemed to work, because the left corner of his mouth twitched slightly, as though he were pleased by this.
"Please sit." He motioned to the chair before me.
I looked over to Alice, she widened her eyes at me as if to say 'Sit the hell down'. I sat down, crossing my legs while doing so and then neatly smoothed out the creases on my skirt.
"That will be all for now, Alice." He drawled, dismissively.
She nodded her head, and practically darted out of the room.
And so… there I sat, face to face with Edroar. I decided I'd let him break the ice. I wanted to be respectful of the boundaries of our boss employee relationship. Plus, I really didn't know what to say to him.
Like I said, I'd never been good at small talk. I always end up saying something completely inappropriate, and the conversation becomes awkward.
So, I kept my eyes on my lap, patiently waiting for him to address me.
After an unusual amount of time had passed, I raised my head and saw that he was filling out paperwork as though I weren't even there.
I found this to be strange, but I figured he was probably in the middle of something important when we came in. I decided to wait politely until he finished.
So I waited…and waited…and waited some more. I don't know how many minutes passed before I started fidgeting around in my seat.
Damn it, why did I drink that Red Bull?
I uncrossed my legs, and then crossed them back again. I stretched my arms up high in the air and arched my back to lengthen the muscles.
After a while, I found myself tapping my toe on floor to the beat of Don't Let Me Get Me. I looked at the clock. I'd been sitting there for ten minutes…in pure silence.
I glanced over at him. He was still engrossed in his paperwork, as though he were completely alone.
More time passed, and I became desperate for something to occupy myself with. So I opened my pocketbook.
I began to quietly rummage through it. I checked my messages, updated my Facebook status, and looked through every picture on my phone. Most of them were of my cat, Yikes.
She was very photogenic, the camera just loved her.
Her shiny, black, fur and gorgeous, amber colored eyes truly gave her a sinister look that I strongly suspect she relished.I called her Yikes because that's what people always said whenever they tried to pet her.
After I exhausted every possible avenue of entertainment held within my purse I closed it and carefully placed it on my lap. I sat there patiently a bit longer.
Just waiting and watching him work. Soon I heard myself softly humming.
Slowly he raised his eyes to mine, without lifting his head. I stopped mid hum. He gave me a look to kill and went back to his work, completely ignoring my presence in the room. I sat there silently for a while longer, now I was blatantly staring at him, imploring him to look at me.
Look at me damn you!
He just kept working as though I weren't even sitting there. What the hell was going on, it was just so bizarre. I didn't know what to do.
Finally, I started to cough and hack, like I was dying. After I nearly coughed up a lung, he casually lifted his head, bringing his stormy green eyes directly to mine.
His long, thick, lashes blinked three times before he spoke. "Would you like something to drink?" He asked, sarcastically.
"No, thank you." I replied, politely.
He lowered his head.
Oh for Christ's sake!
I couldn't take it anymore. I decided to just talk to him, and be the one to break the ice. Though, at that point I felt more like shattering the damn ice…with a sledge hammer.
I tried not to sound overly bitchy, as I said, "Mr. Cullen, should I come back at another time?" Honestly I didn't want to prevent him from working, but I just couldn't sit there watching him for another minute.
"Do you have someplace else to be?" He questioned impassively, without looking up. I detected a slight accent. It sounded affluent...worldly.
"No, of course not, it just seems that you don't have time to speak to me right now." In my opinion, his disregard for me had become downright rude.
"And what is it you'd like to speak to me about?" His eyes abruptly shot up to mine, and I saw annoyance swimming in them.
"Well nothing in particular. It's just kind of odd for me to sit here watching you work like this." I spat out, a little harsher than intended.
I folded my arms firmly and latched onto his angry glare, aggressively holding his heated gaze, for several very intense moments. Instinctively, I edged back into my seat when I saw a murky darkness seep into his eyes.
He placed his pen down pointedly and sat up straight, his broad shoulders hitting the back of the chair with force.
Roughly, he ran his fingers through his hair, giving it the effect of a mini tornado. I quickly understood how it had gotten so disheveled. His skin was no longer pale; it was now flushed, and looked hot to the touch.
"You know what seems odd to me?" he snarled, through clenched teeth, "My masseuse, sitting in my office reprimanding me for working." The words came out in a menacing growl. It wasn't quite a roar but, I think he was well on his way.
Clearly he was upset that I dared to call him on his poor behavior, but how could I not? Had anyone ever let this man know how rude he was?
I wasn't looking to start trouble on my first day, I had cleared the slate. I was forming my own opinion, and all that other positive crap I conjured up in the elevator.
I realized I needed to smooth over our rough start, if I wanted to keep this job, which was seriously becoming debatable the longer I spent in his office.
Maybe none of his other employees were brave enough to talk to him like he was a human being and not an animal, but I decided to take the chance. I would just be myself, I honestly didn't know how to be anyone else, nor did I want to. Bella Swan was not a phony.
"You know, Mr. Cullen," I started apprehensively, "I have to admit, I'm new at this whole personal massage therapist thing. I guess I just expected we'd get to know each other a little before your first massage."
"You have no prior experience?" The words fell out of his mouth as though he were vomiting them.
"What?" My voice raised a few octaves. "Of course I have prior experience." I rolled my eyes. "It's just that I worked at a spa previously." I huffed defensively. "I've never worked with just one person before," I held up my index finger to illustrate the number one. "I was thinking this job would be…I don't know… more… personal…" I hesitated a moment. "I mean, I am your personal massage therapist." My hands were very busy doing all sorts of strange gestures as I spoke.
Definitely no more Red Bull.
He was still looking at me like he'd just thrown up. He appeared stunned…and… nauseous. Not exactly the impression I had hoped to make.
"Ah…I see." He dropped his chin down as he savored my words. "Miss Swan, let me be clear." He moved in closer to me. "You are just one," he held up his finger, mockingly, "of the many personal servants I employ." He threw me an arrogant smirk as he picked up his pen.
He lowered his head back down to his work dismissively. In that moment my opinion was formed.
About three things I was absolutely positive:
First, Mr. Cullen was an arrogant fat cat.
Second, that was far worse than an angry lion in my book.
And third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably disgusted by the fact that he was my boss.
The room filled with an edgy silence. I sat there wondering if any amount of money could possibly be worth working for a man like him.
Unfortunately the reality was I had bills to pay...lots of them. The world just wasn't fair. I needed to stop pretending that it ever could be.
This is your Plan A now, Bella.
After what seemed like hours, his intercom buzzed. "Mr. Cullen, Emmett is here to bring Bella down to the health club." Alice announced.
He looked up at me, then his eyes went to the door, and then back down to his work.
I bit down on my lip in frustration and headed for the door without looking back.
Alright guys…let me know if you think I should continue with this one. I have so many ideas for it. I wasn't kidding when I said Edroar was a Tyrant…I haven't slept in days.
I actually work at a small spa right now. That's what got my wheels spinning for this story. I couldn't help but wonder what it would be like to be Edward Cullen's personal massage therapist. I'm not a massage therapist, but if you are I'd really appreciate some inside information.
I have to give a big thank you to my creative muse for this story, TKegl. She's a literary genius so please check her work out.
Edroar the Angry Lion has a kick ass banner made by Lindz, so please go to my profile and meet him for yourself. Be warned he can be quite ferocious.
Okay…let me know if you want more Edroar. I'm still developing the plotlines, so feedback would be very awesome right about now. Thanks so much for reading….