Making the Grade
Bella is a full time career woman, part time MBA student, and the man in her life is her dog Sampson. Her motto is that "Failure is not an option". But what happens when she is failing her Finance class with obnoxious Professor Cullen? Will Bella admit that she needs him, not only for Finance but other parts of her life as well?
I feel the sweat pooling on my back as I drive to class after work. Even though it's September, we're having a bit of a heat wave across the northeastern US, and downtown Pittsburgh is sweltering as I drive across town. I flip through the radio stations to see if I can find out the source of the traffic that I've been sitting in for the past thirty minutes.
"An accident on the Parkway East outbound has traffic backed up for miles. Try to find an alternate route of the city if you can." Awesome. If only I heard that public service announcement ten minutes ago, I might not be sitting here in back-to-back traffic now. It's 5:25, more than a half hour until class starts. Under normal circumstances I would be about five minutes away, but given the accident I may be cutting it close.
I turn up the music and try to think happy thoughts since there is nothing that I can do but sit here. I find some Smokey Robinson and start belting out the chorus. Nothing like a little Motown to ease the stress of a traffic jam. I check my Blackberry to see if I'd missed anything since I had left work for class. Ooh, a meeting request with my international team at 10 pm. How sweet of them to schedule the meeting after class since I'm sure that there's nothing I'd rather be doing other than joining a conference calls.
But the truth of the matter is, I encourage this type of behavior. I live and breathe and thrive on this shit. I love my work. If I were a guy everyone would just smile and nod, but since I am a woman something must be missing from my life to be so career oriented.
But what's wrong with being focused on my career? I'm only 27, far too young to be tied down and married in my opinion. And I have the most amazing man in my life. Sure, he's a 100 lb. chocolate Labrador Retriever, but he's always happy to see me and doesn't mind that I take conference calls late into the night. He also doesn't mind that I am going to class a few nights a week to complete my MBA. He knows that it's the right thing for me to be doing right now.
My inner ramblings remind me that it's 5:45 and I am still inching through traffic. Tonight is my first night of Finance for the semester. We have a visiting professor for this semester and I don't know anything about him or her. I am hoping that I don't make a bad impression coming to class late since it'll be a damn miracle at this point for me to arrive on time.
At 5:56 I am circling the parking lot praying to the MBA gods that a parking space near my building will be open. No such luck. I park about three blocks away and do my best to jog/walk to the building.
At 6:05 I am approaching the door to my classroom. Not too bad considering the conditions I've faced to get here. Since it's the first night of class I'm sure we're still going through preliminaries. I will just sneak in the side door and look for a seat in the back.
"Excuse me, I know that it might be a bit confusing getting used to the schedule and all, but class starts at 6:00 on the dot. Maybe you can introduce yourself, Miss…?"
"Swan. Bella Swan. And I know that I'm late, but there was a traffic jam on the Parkway due to an accident…" I try to explain. But I am cut off before I can finish my sentence.
"Save the excuses, Miss Swan. In the future I expect you will prepare for such circumstances to ensure that you are here on time and not wasting the time of myself and your fellow classmates."
Who the fuck IS this guy? I mean, I don't make it a habit to be late to class, but our professors usually understand that we're all coming to class straight from work and there are times when unforeseen circumstances warrant a late arrival. I look up to get a good look at this rude bastard.
Well, Professor Haughty is actually Professor HOTTIE as well. He's tall and lean with this shock of coppery, unruly hair sticking up in all directions. He's wearing a button down Polo shirt and you can see just a hint of hair sprinkling his chest. But his most striking feature are the piercing green eyes that are now focused on me in what appears to be disgust. I quickly take a seat in the back of the classroom.
"Well, after that interruption, let me introduce myself. I am Professor E.A. Cullen, and I am visiting from Stanford for this semester. Welcome to Introduction To Finance. It is my understanding that this class will be a pre-requisite to all of your future Finance courses, so your success in this course and your grasp of the materials will be critical to your success here. I think that you will find that if you can follow my simple rules, we will get along quite well."
Did he just throw another dirty look my way? Wow. So I was late buddy, I have to think that worse things have happened in your career. I can tell already this is going to be a long semester.