“Faster,” Coach demanded. “You’re already going three.” I picked up my pace and hurried up.
When I passed him, I panted at him, “Last year I was going ten.”
“You’re going faster, but not fast enough,” he informed me. I huffed and finished my remaining two laps. He looked at his stopwatch. “Three twenty two,” he told me.
“Better.” I put my hands behind my head and practiced my breathing; in through the mouth, out through the nose.
He groaned when he got up and patted my head. “Good job, Liz.” He left and I jogged in place for awhile, to help my heart beat get down to regular, slower.
I sighed and left the track after two minutes. I went to the bleachers and got on my jacket. I had on a sports tank so the jacket didn’t do much but hide my arms.
I went to my dorm and looked in my pocket for the key. I took out the key and got the third one. I put it in the door and leaned on it to open it. It opened without me and I stammered in.
“Mary!” I cried. “I told you; don’t open the door when you hear the key in the lock!”
“Sorry!” She held her hands up in surrender. “I’m going out. You should come.”
“Yeah, right!” I told her, going to me bed and picking up my bag. I lifted it up. “Homework, remember?”
Mary put her hands on her hips. She was wearing a short red skirt with orange and red leggings, a pink, tight shirt that ended above her bellybutton with silver strappy high heels.
I groaned. “You’re going clubbing aren’t you?” She nodded. I groaned again. “I’ll get the hangover cure ready. It’ll be in the fridge when you get back.” She hugged me, grabbed her keys and left.
I groaned and sat on my bed. I opened my History book and turned to page 192. I was in the middle of the Trojan War when the fire bell rang. I jumped up and left the room. Kids were bustling down the hallway and I joined in the mob. I was grateful I had kept my keys in my pocket.
Everyone hurried onto the football field and I groaned. The field was the worst place ever. It had very few stands to sit so we couldn’t even sit properly. I groaned and sat down on the last seat on the bleachers. I got the worst seat by the end. I leaned on the wall and groaned.
I felt someone trying to squeeze in and I elbowed him. “Buzz off,” I told him. “There’s not enough room.”
I turned my head to look at him and stopped. He was possibly the most gorgeous man in school. I’d never seen him before but he had shaggy blond hair, deep soulful blue eyes, tan skin and was buff but not too strong.
“Um…I guess there’s some room.” I scooted over to the end of the bleachers and he sat down.
“I’m Marcus,” he told me offering his hand.
“Lizzy,” I replied. I answered his firm grip with my own.
“Nice grip,” he commented. “Lift weights?”
I shrugged. “I’m in track. Gotta keep my arms ready, too.” He nodded. “This sucks,” I commented.
“Not really; I was in the middle of Chemistry,” he sighed. “This is way better than that.”
“I was at home enjoying the silence.” I groaned. “I’m still sticking with the “this sucks” theory.” He chuckled under his breath and ran a shaky hand through his hair.
“Do you have a job?” he asked suddenly.
“Um…No.” I shook my head. “I have too much going on with track and all that.” I waved my hand dismissingly. He nodded.
“Yeah, I had too much going on before. Then, I really needed the money. I hate dropping classes.” This time, I nodded.
“My job has an opening, maybe you can join,” he told me, handing me a business card. It read,
538 MARTAN ROAD
“I don’t think I’d fit into a bank,” I informed him. “I’m more of a…active person. I’m not good at staying still.” I looked up but he had already left. I saw him weaving his way through the crowd still coming in. I chuckled and shook my head. I put the paper in my back pocket.
The principle went in front of the crowd and told us to go back in. Someone just pulled all dorms fire alarm.
I groaned and stood up. I dusted off the back of my jeans and went back in. I sat down on my bed and looked at the books there.
I picked up reading as if nothing happened. I finished reading after ten minutes and went to my closet. I slipped out of my jeans and T-Shirt and slipped into a large T-Shirt with a panda eating a leaf on it.
I slipped into bed and turned off the light. It was Friday so I had no classes tomorrow. I sighed and fell asleep.
I had a dream that I do not wish to discuss. Let’s just say it had some stuff in it that terrified me out of my wits.
I woke up with a knock on the door and bolted up out of bed. I panted for a few second then I answered it and found the same guy from yesterday there.
“Hi, Marcus,” I greeted him. “Oh my freak!” I screamed, remembering how I was dressed. “Marcus!” I slammed the door in his face and went to my dresser. I changed into jeans and into a better fitting shirt. Then I answered the door again.
“Gonna slam the door in my face again?” he teased. “Can I come in?”
I opened the door wider and gestured around. “Come on in.” I moved out of the way as he stepped around me. He nodded. I flipped my blond hair.
“Nice place,” he commented.”Is your roommate here?” He gestured to the other bed.
Completely different from mine, her bed was black with white pillows while mine had a rainbow comforter with yellow pillows and a green skirt around the bed.
“Yeah, she’s probably still out at the club. She goes like every night and comes back with a major hangover. I always have to make her a cure.. I have one in the fridge for her now.” I pointed to the mini fridge by the window.
“So…you don’t see each other often?”
I shrugged and then shook my head. “She’s normally out while I’m studying.” I gestured to the books on my bed. They were still scattered on my bed with paper strewn everywhere.
“What do you think about the job?” he asked me. I shrugged.
“I don’t know. I need the money but I’m not very good at the behind-the-desk jobs. I’m more of an active person.”
He chuckled. “Trust me; you’ll be moving around a lot. Just give them a call,” he persisted.
“Fine; I don’t know what that will do though.” I reached into my back pocket and grabbed the card from the desk where I’d put it after shoving it into my jeans. It was slightly wrinkled and creased at some places. I pulled out my cell phone and dialed the number.
“CREDIT MALAN, how may I help you?” a woman asked.
I looked at the man. “What do I say?” I asked, putting the speaker to my chest.
“Just tell them your name and that Marcus told you to call this number.” I put the phone back to my ear.
“Hello? I can’t hear you. I’m going to hang up.”
“Wait!” I said urgently into the earpiece. “My name’s Lizzy Anne. Um…Marcus told me to call this number.” He nodded approvingly.
“Oh…One second please.” She put me on hold and Mozart started playing in my ear. I groaned and put my phone to my chest again.
“Why am I going through all of this just for a stupid job?” I questioned Marcus.
“Because this job; this isn’t just a normal job.” The bank people came back and I put it back to my ear.
“Hello, Miss Anne?” a man’s voice asked me.
I nodded and then, remembering he couldn’t see me, I told him, “Yes?”
“Miss, Anne, I would love it if you could come by today. We have some things we need to discuss.” I heard him clear his voice and I itched my left foot with my toe.
“Um, ok. What time should I come over?”
“Is five good for you?” he questioned me.
“One second.” I took out my PDA and looked through my calendar. I was clear for the entire weekend. “Sure, that’s good.”
He hung up without another word and I lowered the phone. “Let me guess,” I told Marcus. “Your boss is a total stuck up, annoying guy?”
He shrugged. “Isn’t every boss?” I chuckled and threw my phone onto the vanity.
“What job am I signing up for?” I asked. “Please tell me I’m not signing up to become the janitor.” He just looked at me and I laughed. “I’m becoming the janitor?” I joked.
“No.” then he left.
“Man!” I declared when he left. “What’s with these people; ending so suddenly!”
The door sprung open and a Mary with an extreme hangover wobbled in. I reached into the fridge and grabbed the hangover antidote. I helped her onto her bed and she lay down. I pushed it into her hand and she started drinking it. “Thanks,” she groaned. “This is one of those days I wished I didn’t drink so much.”
“Isn’t that everyday you go out?” I teased. She groaned and threw the empty cup at me. I caught it and threw it in the trash bin.
“Man, I hate this!” she moaned clutching her head. She put her head on her pillow and fell asleep. I went back to my bed and worked until four. Then I got dressed in the clothes that I thought were most suitable for a job interview; blue flare jeans, a green and a purple blouse with frills around the neck. I topped it off with silver close toed high heels and a pearl necklace. The necklace was a birthday gift from my third birthday from my aunt.
I picked up my cell phone and put it in my back pocket and grabbed my keys, also. I left the room and went down to the parking lot. I found my red 2008 Toyota Yaris and got in. I put the keys in the ignition and started the car. I pulled out of the lot and went down to the bank.
The bank was a red building with one thousand cubicles all on the outside with glass windows. Each floor had two hundred offices. I parked the car and got out. When I got inside there was one desk that had the word INTERVIEWS posted on a board suspended on top of the desk.
I went there and she greeted me kindly with a “Hello.” The woman who greeted me looked Asian. She had black hair, perfect skin with a mole above her upper lip.
“My name’s Elizabeth Anne. I was told to come here at five for an interview,” I informed her.
She nodded and looked at the sheet. She flipped through five pages and nodded. “He’ll be waiting for you one floor down. Second room on your right.” She pointed to an elevator behind her desk and I thanked her and left.
I found the door and knocked on the door. A man told me to come in and I went in hesitantly. A man with a well shaved haircut with tan skin, green eyes and a tailored hair cut.
“Ms. Anne,” he greeted me standing up and offering his hand. His voice sounded just like it did on the phone. I accepted his hand with a light shake.
“I’m sorry,” I told him. “I didn’t catch your name.”
“I’m Alan Grant.” He released my hand. “Please sit.” I took a seat in one of the chairs in front of his desk. “So, have you had any experience in this area?”
“I haven’t. I work better physically but I’m very patient. I’m taking track in college.” He nodded and folded his hands together.
“Have you had any other jobs?”
I shook my head. “I haven’t had time with my studies and track. I’m gotten some small ones, like teacher’s assistant but no real jobs.” He nodded again.
“Would you mind if I did a…truth test on you? I’m sorry, it’s precautions.” He looked me in the eye.
“A truth test; how can there be a need for a truth test at a bank?” I looked him in the eye. He reached under his desk and I launched up. “What’s going on here?” I demanded.
“Before I answer that question, I will need you to sign something.” He pulled his hand out of his desk and pulled out a piece of paper; it was a contract. “What I am about to tell you is confidential and you will be in trouble or you will be put five miles under the earth and will never see another human soul except for the one that brings you your food if you even hint at this to any others.”
I thought about it with a reasonable mind. Either I signed the contract and had the choice to walk away or I didn’t sign and was put five minutes under the earth. Not much of a choice there.
I had to sign three spots and had to do my fingerprint in two spots. He then took me to a room with a machine humming in the center on a desk with two chairs, each on different sides. A man was sitting there with a notepad and pen.
“Please take a seat,” the man told me. I did as I was told and took a seat there. The man with me attached five wires with suction cups to my temples, wrists and one on my throat. He then started with the questions that I had seen many times on many shows.
“Have you ever had any information trusted upon you that was not trusted upon others?” he asked.
“No,” I answered. He wrote down the results on the paper.
“Do you have a relationship with anyone?” He looked at me over his glasses. He was completely bald and so no hair fell in his face. His neck was red and stood out against his pale skin.
“Yes,” I told him.
“With whom?” he questioned.
“I don’t believe that that is needed for your information,” I cocked my head to the side and I answered that squarely.
“I believe that it is my business.” He put the pen to the paper. He wrote something down and asked me the question again, “With whom?”
“Jonathon Lair,” I told him, choosing the name of my worst enemy. He looked at the screen.
“That’s very good. Now, who do you really have a relationship with?” I pulled the wires off.
“I refuse to answer that question. You do not have the right to pry into my life.” I stood up and turned around but a strong man blocked the door. I turned back around and sat down. “Fine,” I told him. The man reattached the wires.
Thankfully, the man moved onto a new question. “Do you believe that you have exceeding skills in strength?”
“I have good skills and strength, yes, but I would not say exceeding. I can merely run a mile in five and a half minutes.”
He nodded and wrote it down. “The last question is, are you alright with the sight of blood and fighting?”
“What type of question is that?!” I demanded. “What, am I gonna become some type of killer?”
“Ms. Anne, your job will not require you to do anything that you are not comfortable with.” He gestured to the door. “The secretary will be in the hall to bring you to you office. You will start tomorrow.”
I took off the wires and I left the room. A woman in a tight blue dress with blue heels and a blue highlight in her blond hair greeted me. She looked about my age but her eyes had years of wisdom in them.
“So, how was Alan?” she asked. “I’m Mary.”
“Is he the boss?” She nodded. “He seems uptight; like he’s used to being respected.” I looked at her. “I hate men like that; professors we call them. I’m Lizy.”
“We?” she asked. Her voice was like honey; sweet but with some control in them.
“Yeah, me and the other college students. We hate all of our professors, they’re all stuck up and…ugly.” She grimaced and I laughed. “So, what really goes on here?” I asked in the same tone I used the rest of the conversation.
“Oh, they train people to be ready in the-” She stopped herself and looked at me. “You’ll fit in just fine here,” she informed me with a chuckle. She patted my back and led me to an empty desk outside an office. She gestured there. “You’ll be assisting Mr. Marcus. He is this areas information technologist. You won’t be bored while working for him.”
I nodded. “Great,” I said sarcastically. I sat down on the chair behind the desk and looked around. It was bare with only a computer, some supplies, paper and a mug of pens. The mug read WORLDS BEST ASSISTANT.
Homey, I thought. I moved my hand across the desk and Mary leaned on the end. “Fit your styles?” she teased.
“I live in a dorm room with a roommate who’s always drunk. My family consists of three sister and two brothers. This is better than I ever had. I had to share a room for most of my life.”
She laughed and I stood back up. The door behind me opened and a man with a large forehead, black, well-cut hair and half-closed brown eyes. I couldn’t tell his skin color and the only thing I could say is he was red skinned due to the fact that his skin looked incredibly sunburned.
He carried a bundle of paper and put them on the desk. “Bring these to where they belong.” He went back in. Mr. Marcus had a German accent.
There was at least ten pounds of work. I rifled through them and groaned again. I started biting my thumb. “How long do I have to get this done?” I asked the open door.
“Until the end of today,” I heard him answer. Mary chuckled under her breath. She held a folder above her face trying to hide it but I could still see her shoulders heaving. “Shut up,” I told her.
She put the folder back down. “Well, I gotta go do my job,” she informed me.
“Mary!” I pleaded. “Come on! He-”
“Sorry, gotta go,” she told me from across the hallway. She waved over her shoulder. “Bye, Lizzy!”
A man from the desk on the other side of a board pushed the board aside and offered me his hand. “I’m Jace,” he told me. “Man, I’m so sorry for you. The last person that worked for him only stayed there for ten months. I only see him sometimes.”
“Ugh, that sucks!” I moaned. “I’m Lizzy.” I took his hand.
“I know; the new girl. This is gonna suck for you; I’ve been here for a year now and…like… it sucks here,” he laughed. “I’m sorry; I’m supposed to be talking about the good things aren’t I? Let me think. They have good coffee? No, no, they don’t.”
I laughed with him this time. “Like homemade coffee made by your mother or like packet coffee?” I joked.
He patted me on the back. “You better get started on those.” He pointed to the papers. “You’ll be in trouble if you don’t.” I groaned and looked into them. They each had a name and an office number. I took the first five.
The first one read MR. RONDO ROOM 198. I went up to the first floor and looked at the directory board. Room 198 was the ninth room on the fifth hall.
I went there and dropped them off to the secretary. He nodded and grabbed the files. I left before I saw what he did with them.
The next one read MS. MALAND ROOM B003. I groaned and went back down the elevator. I pressed button one and went to the directory.
“First door on the left,” I mumbled to myself. I went there but the secretary wasn’t there. I knocked on the door and a kind voice told me to come in.
When I came in, I saw a plump woman with brown eyes coated with black eye shadow, black hair with a braid down the side and a black suit. She had on purple lipstick.
“Um…” I stammered. “Mr. Marcus told me to give this to you.” I handed her the folder.
“Thank you,” she told me. “I hope you have a good time.” I nodded and left.
The next folder said the same thing. I went back in. “I’m so sorry. This one’s for you, too.” I handed the other one to her. I left again.
The next one was someone by the name of Mrs. Brown in room 956. I went to the elevator and pressed button five. Her room was the sixth room on the fifth hall. I dropped it off on her desk. Both of the folders were to her. I went back to my desk.
“Is there, like, some cart that I can move all of this around with?” I asked Jace. “It’ll get really tiring caring it.”
“Yeah, there are carts in the supply closet.”
“Thanks,” I told him and went there. I got one cart and put all of the folders in it. It took me two hours to finish. I groaned and sat down with a sigh when I was done.
“Hard work?” he asked.
I nodded. “Have you even left your desk?” I asked.
He grinned. I started chewing my thumb nail again. Mr. Marcus came out again. He plopped more stuff on my desk. It was half the size but it still got me agitated. Mr. Marcus went back into his room and closed the door behind him.
“Man,” Jace mumbled. “Does he even do anything in there?”
“I doubt it. This is like five hundred folders in all.” I stood back up and put them in my cart. I finished then in half the time but handing out the folders still tired me out. Some things just were not meant to be done in a day.