Chapter 2

I never thought I would be in this kind of position in my life, ever. I was never the type of person who was sociable at any means nor a 'smile here, smile there' type. I am more of a 'please don't talk to me at all,' type of person. Sure, I'll talk to you but only if you ask a question. I never instigate or participate in any type of conversation or elevator slash water cooler quips.

I'm not trying to be a snob either. I just want to be left alone. Do my own thing, do my own shit. I graduated BA journalism and this is the first job I got after months of sending out resumes to different kinds of news organizations. Apparently, nowadays, you have to be more tech savvy to work in places like CNN, BBC, Reuters, etc. I can learn and try but I'm more old school with everything, but I do have an old trusty macbook my dad gave me when I was seventeen. Now, I'm almost twenty-three and the damn thing still works albeit slow.

I am currently a glorified assistant at Cullen publishing for about six months now. Glorified, meaning everyone is taking notice of me at last. Notice, as in, 'get me this' and 'get me that' sort of thing. Technically, my job title is 'Quality Control Checker,' in the manuscript receiving department. Sounds important, no? Basically, my job description is to check whether the incoming manuscripts are not written by a five year old with a case of overindulgence in chocolate. After making sure that those stacks of paper monster rally of bound blocks are 'quality controlled,' then they go to the associate editor for another round of mash and slash until the author wouldn't even recognize their own work anymore.

Actually, I really, really like my job. I can even take home the manuscripts with overtime pay of course and lose myself in stories filled with passion, tragedy, magic, mayhem, helplessness, hopelessness, turmoil, silliness, etc. And I don't even have to pay for the entertainment. I rarely buy books anymore since my job is to read potential future published books even if more than half of them are crap. I get paid doing what I do best, read.

I did try to sneak in some notes on the side of the folder with the manuscript with a bit of constructive criticism on it. It only happened once since the associate editor named, Victoria Whorewalker, just kidding. Her real name is Victoria Hallwalker. Well, Ms. Whorewalker, took my sticky notes as an insult to her and her ability to do her job and reported me to my supervisor as an employee who overstepped her boundaries. So that stopped my quest to personally advance in the company. I just took everything Mr. James Focker, real name this time, told me in stride.

"Bella, you can't just put your opinion on paper and give it to an associate editor, ok?" he said. He looks so beaten and miserable with his too tight pants and starched white shirt. Not to mention the horrendous flowery tie he's wearing.

"Ok, boss," I whispered, still looking down and not facing my supervisor due to my current predicament of embarrassment and humiliation.

"You've only been here for six months and I can see that you're a great employee but take it easy in trying to prove yourself around here," he suggested. He went around his desk and sat down on his also beaten up office chair with lumbar support.

"I'm sorry, it won't happen again." I didn't know what to do with my hands while being reprimanded so I just kept them clasped behind my back trying to stop them from shaking.

"You may go back to your desk," he waved me away like a scolded child and I did scamper off back to my desk slash cubicle.

He's actually, a pretty good boss, considering him dating Ms. Whorewalker. You would think he's also an ass but I think they balance each other out, the woman being the bitch and the guy being the meek one in their relationship. James is a pussy but an attentive and considerate one.

I have two other coworkers in this department named Angela and Laurent. Laurent St. Dic, yes, it's his real name, is this flamboyant dreadlocked African-American guy who's so freaking tall and menacing when his favorite coffee guy in the café downstairs is on his off day. Like yesterday for example,

"Bella! Where the hell are my two by two sticky notes?" he hollered.

"Laurent, it's on your desk next to your pink feathery pen set," I answered.

"Bella! Where the hell is my pink feathery pen set?"

"Laurent, it is right in front of you next to your monitor, ok? Darling, you can't miss it. Those feather pens are so brightly pink, it's probably from your stint at last year's Carnaval."

"Bella! Where's Tyler? Where's my boy toy?" He sighed. Then I heard him banging his head on his desk for a more type of depressive effect.

"Laurent, your sweetheart, Eric, who you never talk to except ask and pay for your coffee, is off on Mondays, ok?" I replied nonchalantly.

This always happens on Mondays. Tyler, the cute coffee guy has been taking day offs from his job on a weekday. And this normally, should not be a problem except for an overgrown spoiled gay guy in the next cubicle. Laurent has been crushing on Tyler for about three months now when he started as a barista at the café in the 1st floor lobby. There's a problem though, Laurent, clams up whenever he tries to flirt with Tyler who's also gay as a matter of fact. I swear to whoever is up there that the next time I see Tyler I would hint, no, tell him of Laurent's obsession.

My other coworker is Angela who's another boring individual like me except she's in a boring relationship with the boring copy editor, Ben Cheney. Yes, I'm bitter. I'm not jealous or anything except that I also want a boring relationship with another boring individual who likes me for me. Angela, is a sweetheart. Nothing can ever go wrong in her life. A spelling bee champion since she was six year old. Angela, is yes, boring, albeit another plain brown haired, brown eyed girl with a pretty face who's smart and funny and boring. She met Ben who's a bibliophile at the company's spelling challenge party last year and has been inseparable ever since.

This brings us to situation at hand. I am currently with both Laurent and Angela waiting in line at the café counter at 8:45 A.M trying to be patient while, Tyler, our barista makes our orders. I notice a new guy working behind the counter trying to unsuccessfully help Tyler put mocha syrup in my grande cup.

"You put too much syrup in the cup," Tyler mumbled to the new guy. The new guy's head was down and he was wearing a green baseball cap with the café logo on it.

"But she likes it with more flavor in it," he whispered back to Tyler. How does he know I like it with extra shot of mocha syrup? Then I cut in.

"Excuse me? I just want a grande mocha with an extra shot of syrup if you guys don't mind. And I'm also in a hurry since I'm going to be late for work," I said tapping on my imaginary watch for effect. The new guy faced me and suddenly, I couldn't breathe. The two behind me gasped with surprise and was about to say something when the new guy gave both of them a glare that automatically shut them up. I gave them a look of WTF when Laurent grabbed Angela to the pastry counter to point out possible sides.

"Oh! Angela! Look at that delicious chocolate cake! Yum oh!" Laurent shouted while Angela was forced to look at cakes. I ignored this sudden weirdness and turned back to the café counter for my much needed coffee.

New guy's name according to his nametag is 'Edward.' It's a nice strong name that suits his classic handsome face. He has these gorgeous smoldering green eyes that can probably be made of cut emeralds and a perfect yet crooked nose and thin red pouty lips. I feel clichéd just by thinking about my description but you just can't describe this guy in few meager words. Words are just not worth it for the physical sense of this man.

"Miss? Miss? You're coffee is ready." He seems to be waving a hand in my face while his other hand is holding my wake up call. Did I just zone out?

"Oh! Thanks!" I embarrassingly grabbed my grande mocha out of his hands and hurried after the two giggling idiots heading to the elevator. I glanced back to the counter of the café and saw Edward just standing there and ignoring the other customers while smirking at me then waving bye. He seems to be not a good helper since Tyler is the only one working while he openly flirts at me. I shake my head and forget about the encounter.

AN: See you next chapter.