Summer Baxter walked in and said, “What in the actual hell Is going on?” Her small office, just large enough to hold a five-foot desk and one chair along with a filing cabinet squashed into a corner had been ransacked. Not ransacked in a bad way, all things considered, but her files were neatly stacked on the filing cabinet, her desk had obviously been cleared and cleaned and all the items on top of it re-arranged, including her computer – that was bad enough – but the windowsill festooned with vases of flowers of every description, and the desk was topped with boxes in ribbons and bows took the unexpected to a whole new level. The only empty corner in her office now housed a deluxe coffee maker and water cooler. Without turning she yelled, “Sabrina!” in a no-nonsense voice that brooked attention.
Sabrina had hidden out, she’d been privy to the happenings, knew it wouldn’t be well received and slowly made her way to her bosses office. “Oh, um, yeah, about that!”
Summer Baxter turned her head and looked at the pint-sized brunette awaiting an answer. “Explain this -this….” at a loss for words, she flailed her arms at the contents of her office.
“Before you get all crazy, your new updated computer was delivered and your office had to be rewired to handle the new connections and gizmos and to do that, I had to re-arrange a few things.”
“A few things? Where are my…” before she could utter another word, Summer squeezed past her and began her explanation. “These are your current files, pointing to one set of files, these are the ones you were finishing up, all delightfully colour coded so they won’t get mixed up and in line with the new colour coding system online. The coffee maker (you lucky duck) is from Beck in thanks for the work you did on their accounts. They threw in the water cooler so you wouldn’t have to run to the kitchen to get water, and you have a year’s supply of “Dark Fandango” your favourite coffee of all time.”
Sabrina wanted to be annoyed but as she peered carefully about the office space, secretly admitted it was laid out in a much more efficient manner and everything seemed easily accessible and, well, who could deny wanting a cup of Dark Fandango at a moment’s notice.
She eyed the new desk chair warily and then pulled it out from under the desk and sat down. Well, this was an improvement. A far cry from the monstrosity that she’d used before that although it looked comfortable was anything but and in her mind just took up space for nothing. This was a streamlined stylish sleek chair, the right size to accommodate her long elegant legs. Not that she saw them that way, certainly not through her teen years when she’d been a head taller than almost everyone else and had endured the not-so affectionate term “giraffe” until the guys started catching up.
“Ok,” she paused, “I could get used to this.”
Sabrina smiled, “I thought so,” she whispered under her breath. When Summer squinted at her she said, “Hopefully a lowly assistant will have an opportunity to use said coffee maker on occasion?”
“I’m sure it could be arranged, starting now!”
Summer busied herself making coffee humming a delightful tune that Sabrina instantly recognized as belonging to a former client, Pandemonium.
“How did the meeting with McFlurry go?” Summer asked excitedly. As a long-time fan of the celebrity, she couldn’t wait to hear whether he was as personable and debonair in person as portrayed in news and magazine articles.
Sabrina paused thoughtfully before replying. “A lot more down to earth than I expected. ” Summer handed her a cup of the freshly brewed and incredibly aromatic coffee and Sabrina sipped gratefully. “He’s definitely tall dark and handsome, at least 6’2 and built like a toned bodybuilder but surprisingly humble. He seemed uncomfortable with all the hype constantly deflecting attention elsewhere at those around him suggesting they had more to do with his fame than he did. He seemed a little flustered by it all.”
Sipping her own coffee after inhaling appreciatively, Summer asked, “And this surprised you?”
Sitting back in her chair to relax, Sabrina quietly remarked, “Yeah, it was refreshing, to say the least. I’ll hold off judgement until I know whether it’s part of the act, or he’s for real. I’m betting it’s for real since I doubt he could have maintained that level of bashful sincerity for long and when the others were cow-towing, he offered what I can only describe as an annoyed look followed by the once over as if to say ‘are you for real?’ and he’d brush their fawning aside. Completely opposite of Derek Sandborn who expected that and more, a real prima-donna of the first order. “
Slouching in her seat Summer agreed, “Oh my god, I’m not sorry to see that account done with. It’s difficult, keeping up with him and his demands. Not to mention how he changes his mind faster than anyone I’ve ever met before…five seconds was a long stint for him.” They both laughed at the picture she’d painted because it was so true and factual.
“We take the good with the bad!” Sabrina reminded her.
“Yeah, don’t I know it. It’s not that I don’t get it, they are good at what they do, super-stars in fact, and they’ve had their egos stroked so much they’ve lost touch with reality. Little do they realize just how quickly they could be replaced – like tomorrow – the public can be really fickle. You have to be something special to keep your audience, especially if you are trying to attract the teen crowd. They grow up. Their tastes change and with that, the type of music movies shows they watch. I mean, they all grow up eventually. Right?”
“Part of why we exist though – keeping them in the public eye, in a good positive way.”
“Who recommended our services to Ian McFlurry, did he say?”
“No. He was stiff and tight-lipped at first. I suspect he was expecting something different, or should I say more the same – and he wasn’t a fan, that’s for sure. Once we delved into the reality of what we offer, he seemed far more interested and even added a few ideas of his own.”
“Were they good?”
“Yeah, they were excellent. In fact, he wants us to accompany him on the next leg of his tour, take a few candid shots and write about that. He suggested shots of the fans and band and shied away from anything involving himself. He said it was a collaborative effort and wanted more focus on the rest of the crew and the fans to show his appreciation of their support.”
“That’s not something you see every day.”
“No. Drew my appreciation and admiration in fact.”
“High praise.” She waited a beat then said, “Can’t wait to meet him.”
“Good, because we’re meeting him here tomorrow morning at nine, sharp!”
“We are?” Standing to take their cups she danced a little jig,” Hot damn!”
Selina couldn’t help but smile, “Keep that jig in check while he’s here though, he doesn’t like undue attention.”
Summer’s delight popped as quick as a balloon, “Damn well forewarned is forearmed, right?”
Sabrina laughed, “Yeah!” then picked up a file and began working on it.