It had been a mistake to become so complacent. To accept the servant mentality with little hesitation. I know that now. Unfortunately, the knowledge isn’t worth the weight in blood it took to earn.
I’d always had protection. Always some guard or team member who watched my back. And never once, in this highly secured life, had I needed to think about what kind of danger the outer world could be. Or, the inner for that matter…
I was my father’s secretary, his go between. The large middle finger he used when he was done with someone. As such, it had been my job to meet with any potential business partners he didn’t want to deal with or to realign a current partner who had overstepped their bounds. He didn’t care how it was done. Just that he didn’t have to do it.
In my current position I’d found myself with meeting after meeting. My father preferred to lord from his high office in favor of open handed mediation on even the simplest of problems. I tried to be kind. To let the other in attendance down gently. To give them a semblance of professionalism even while I hid behind the safety curtain my lineage afforded me. A petty and selfish thing I was.
The worst of these meetings came as a hard hit when even Evan Richards earned no exception.
Richards was placed as CEO of his mother’s spa chain the moment he was old enough to legally take charge. Because he was young, and everything was built for him, there was little Evan wanted for. This was the issue. Keen to make deals and decisions he neglected to realize he was leader in name only and dear mommy still pulled the strings.
He’d done fine with the contracts, many earned through tips I’d given him, but he’d gotten a bit presumptuous when he dealt with my father.
Secretive and conservative, who cared not a bit for my relationship with Evan, father wanted nothing to do with Richards or his brash schemes.
You see, small deals were one thing, but Richards and his mother Sarah had been known to cause trouble. This was known to happen on random occasions especially if one or the other was in a foul mood. They would sabotage the outcome of contracts for little more than spite, just to make a point that they could. A loss on our end if we became her target. To cut the chance, father decided he wouldn’t deal with Richards. If only to ensure Sarah had no leverage on our profits.
So, father sent me once more and I agreed. My intention had been to gently inform my fiancé that our company held no interest in his proposal for the health bar line and he needed to first shore up his own company before father would even think of a deal.
And he was late. He hadn’t called. And I was losing my nerve.
“Another tea Miss Rivers,” the attractive and very attentive waitress offered as she checked on my table. I’d been there for some time and had nursed the one I’d ordered for a while now. Well more like fumed into the few cold dregs left.
“No Rachel.” I waved her offer off with as polite of a decline as I could muster. “I’ll be on my way soon if my client doesn’t show. Though I would like to place an order for your Cheese Danish, to go.”
“Your regular then?” She happily jotted down the order and gave me a bright smile.
“Extra blueberries,” She asked.
“I believe you know that answer,” I chuckled.