Friday, October 19, 2012

"Text Message" | Chapter 2


Tracy awoke the next morning to rapid wetness that then switched to a fuzzy tail beating her nose like a drum.

"What are you doing puppy?" She picked up the little Shih Tzu who was happy someone woke up.

Tracy took a look at the clock and realized she still had a few hours before work started.

"Rule number one puppy. We do not get up early. Work is at 9 AM  and we leave at eight to get there on time. You don't wake us up at 5 AM!!" She said to the puppy that yapped and wagged its tail that much faster.

Since she was so rudely awaken, Tracy decided to get a little bit of housework accomplish as well as feed the puppy and cook Jake his breakfast.

As she sorted the clothes, her phone began to vibrate.

"Hmm, I wonder who that could be." She whispered to herself. Tracy picked up the phone and noticed it was another message from that short code 53097. This message read:

"A night on the town can be pure bliss; but the morning after you'll hold a frown, definitely a step you shall miss."

"What the heck is that supposed to mean?" Disturbed Tracy decided to send a reply.

No sooner than she sent the reply of 'who are you?' she received another message that read:

Error Invalid Number. Please re-send using a valid 10 digit mobile number or valid short code.

"What is this? If it’s invalid why is it sending messages to me?" She sat there wondering if someone was playing a joke or trying to get the best of her. When puppy rubbed her leg she couldn't help but think about what took place and decided to worry about it later as she pat puppy's head.

Work was hectic! Not only did she have to do a surprised meeting on her expectations of her coworkers and team, but she also had a larger amount of paperwork to accomplish. Being a top notch senior executive really was taking its toll on her. She couldn't believe this was so early in the beginning. Would it get worse opposed to last time? Would she even be able to last with this kind of work load? Did Mr. Sullivan make a bad decision in picking her over Michael? Tracy head was spinning and all she could think of was the headache that was forming.

"Hey, excuse me?" A woman knocked on Tracy's door to her office.

Tracy looked up to find a light skinned girl with golden locks, eyes the color of jade with full lips and a shape to match the beautiful face.

"Can I help you?" Tracy asked trying not to let the agitation in her throat be her voice.

"You wanna go have a snack or a drink with me? You look like you could use a break and maybe two Tylenols too." The woman giggled.

"Oh that sounds lovely!" Tracy said.

As the two women occupied a small table in the cafeteria, the woman gave Tracy some aspirin.

"Here these might do it for you." She had such a warm smile.

"Thanks so much." Tracy had a bite of the muffin she got.

"My name is Genevieve. If you want you can call me Eva like everyone else does." She extended her hand.

Tracy shook her hand, "Nice to meet you Eva, my name is Tracy."

"Tracy Hubbard?" Eva asked.

"Yes. Um, have we met before?" Tracy tried to recall if she met Eva before. But anyone would remember a beautiful woman such as her.

"No," Eva giggled, "I remember seeing your name. See you and I hold the same title."

"You're a Senior Executive too?" Tracy was shocked.

“I guess no one told you how things are run up here?” Eva took out a pack of cigarettes, and slid a solitary one out, “Mind if I smoke?”

“No, I don’t mind at all.”

“You see, besides you and I. There are 3 other Senior Executives, whom happen to be men.” Eva lit the cigarette and blew out a puff of smoke.

“So there are five of us?” Tracy was officially confused.

“Yes, see here’s the deal. What we do with the processing, ordering supplies, distributing those supplies, building out clientele—it’s a lot of work. So it’s quite impossible for one to do it alone. Thus they decided to have 5 Senior Execs. It frees up the work load and gives more time doing the job right the first time, oppose to making countless mistakes…”


“Yes, mistakes. See the first 5 Executives were all men. Unfortunately all of them wanted their own power. So they spent more time reaching the top individually, they let their work suffer because of such selfishness. They, of course, were called on it and made necessary arrangements to make this work. However one of them didn't want to be a team player. He refused to share his success with anybody else. Because of his ways, his work suffered. In the middle of a huge merger, not only did they not have all they needed as far as information, financial statistics and the business proposal. He made a deal of his own…” Eva took a long swig on the cigarette.

“Deal? What kind of deal?”

“He made a deal with a bigger company who was considered competition for our company. If he would sale all the information he knew about the company’s future steps, they promised him a nice big office of his own and him up high on the ladder. Well he liked the sound of it, and obliged. Little did he know then, not only did Sullivan, Conners & Steele go into a heavy bankruptcy, but he never received that big office with the big paycheck. SCS suffered for many years. Of course years before we came to work here, thus they had to figure out a way to never let this happen again.”

“Well what did they decide on?” Tracy was intrigued by this historic tale of the company.

“Well while trying to rebuild itself and begin a comeback, the higher ups decided that they would change the game up a bit. They added a woman. Things did go in harmony and the company grew, slowly but surely.” Eva blew out another puff of smoke, tapped the cigarette ashes into the ashtray that donned the table, and similar to the other tables in the cafeteria.

“Well how did they get back on top in the supply chain again?”

“They added another woman, by suggestion of the first woman.  Even though things worked out well, it wasn't as easy as it seemed. A lot of times she couldn't convey her opinions and was ignored. So she felt if she had another of her own kind, she would at least have a team, a backup so to speak. Maybe not as strong as the men, but still just as good, unfortunately it didn't work out like she thought it would. When they hired the next woman, not only was she ruthless, evil and hell-bent on herself. She also screwed whatever to get her way. So the two women became rivals, and that created even more conflict. Because of their dislike for one another, they were able to get their work done and help bring the company out of its slump.”

“What happened to those two women?”

“They eventually retired so I’m told,” Eva butted her cigarette out in the ashtray, before blowing one more puff of smoke, “The women before us, only one still works here. She’s stationed at one of the branches.”

“What happened to the other woman?”

“Not sure to be honest. I took the place of Barbra, the one stationed at the West Coast branch. She was nice and taught me all I needed to know. Now as for Sandra, she came in and was fine. We tried to include her, but she seemed more focused on Mr. Monroe—”

Mr. Monroe?

“You’ll meet him soon enough. Apparently Sandra’s father was this big shot self-owned businessman over in Europe. She was blonde, blue eyed beauty who had her dad wrapped around her finger tighter than a serpent and its prey. So to make a deal Mr. Monroe did what he had to do, and if that meant an indecent affair, then so be it.”

“An affair? Like sneaking around?”

“No more like sex, lies, video tape and too much money to handle. All was well until Sandra ended up pregnant.”

“Pregnant?!” Tracy mouth flew open.

“Well because she didn't say anything right away, her growing glowing stomach told it all. Mr. Monroe being the baby’s father wasn't too proud. Thus asked for an abortion, but by that time she was too far along. Then around maybe her 6th month, she came in with bruises on her arms and a black eye. When asked what happened, she said she fell. I think her and Mr. Monroe had a domestic argument. For you see, Mr. Monroe knew if anything leaked his wife and five kids wouldn't be pleased.”

“Oh my gosh.”

“Mm-hmm. So when she was due to have the baby, she took off her allowed maternity leave. Came back, and then suddenly didn't come into work one day. Three days went by and while in a proposal meeting, we get this memo saying she’s calling in her two-week notice to resign. She never showed up those two weeks, and after that everyone seemed to act like she never existed in the first place. Then this cold eerie feeling came along.”

“What do you mean, eerie feeling?”

“When I would ask about if another female would be joining the team, I was always told to mind my business or not worry about it. Me personally I don’t like to be told what to do. So you know that pissed me off instantly. Months go by and I get this earful from a secretary saying they were considering getting a new female to join the team. For a moment I was happy, and then I got disgusted and thought how much it would ruin my thunder.”

Ruin her thunder? Tracy didn't like the detour this conversation had just taken.

Eva rapped her long, well-manicured nails on the table, “Then here you show up yesterday. When I asked the men about you, I didn't get anything. The one, Lance, told me for a small price he would tell me what I wanted to know.”

“A price? Money for information that should be a given?”

Eva scooted her chair closer to the table, causing her large breasts to rest comfortably on the table, “No dear, sex. But regardless of the situation, I’m not going to be someone’s sex toy just for the hell of it. And if this is their way of getting rid of the women, they've got another thing coming when it comes to Genevieve. So I declined and knew then something was up. As soon as I come into work I noticed your secretary handing you a stack full of papers. I didn't think anything of it, because we all get work like that. While I was getting my morning coffee, I overheard the men talking.”

“What were they talking about?”



“Yep. They gave you all the work they needed to have done by the end of the week. But because they half assed it they gave it to you.”

“But wait,” Tracy was confused, “The secretary told me that the work wasn't due for another two weeks—the 25th to be exact.”

“It’s not. It’s due this Friday. They said that if you didn't finish it, not only would you get fired and lose everything you've worked so hard for. They made mention that would be one down and one to go. They said that even if you did try to challenge the fact that you were told something else, they would band together and disagree. I already know nothing and that’ll put me in hot water as well.”

“Well my secretary knows what she told me.”

“I wouldn't bank too much on that; hon. Miranda Jones is a sneaky bitch.”

“I’m sorry?” Did this woman just call the nicest person I’ve met so far a bitch? What’s really going on here? Tracy was letting her mind wander.

“I’m sure you’ve met Leon.”

“Leon?” Tracy tried to recall meeting someone, “What’s his last name?”

“Leon Jenkins.”

“No I don’t remember meeting anyone by that name.”

“Well he knows you very well. A little too well, I think. Anyway if you were to get roasted by the boss, not even Miranda would vouch for you.”

“Why not?”

“Miranda is sleeping with Leon for a lack of better terms. So that means you have four against you. If I were you I wouldn't get too friendly with her. Like I said she’s a sneaky bitch. Look at this way, how else does a woman with no college education or experience, gains a job meant for a more qualified candidate? By fucking her way to the top of course.”

Tracy stared at this woman who seemed so nice at first. Genevieve was a wicked woman and seemed very bitter.

“Well if that’s the case, then why are you telling me all of this? It seems to me that you still feel threatened by me. If I’m wrong to assume it seems that we are more of enemies—rivals even.” Tracy was pissed.

“You’re absolutely right, doll. You are a threat to me. However I also find it strange that they’re trying to get rid of us two birds with one stone. Now shut up and let me finish. So I heard Lance ask Leon was he sure Miranda would vouch for them this time. Because last time, she messed up and that how Eva is still working here. At that time I thought it was best to make my presence known. I said good morning to them and asked what was on the agenda for the day. They told me not to worry about because it was none of my business. So because I have a short temper, I asked them straight up what the issue was. Lance, the leader of the pack told me there wasn't one until I walked in unannounced. Fair enough I thought to myself. I wasn't even all the way down the hallway before he said, if we don’t get rid of those two bitches, our jobs are gonna be gone, our cut is gone too. Women have no place in the workplace if they’re not going to be on their knees and sucking us off. And as far as I’m concerned Genevieve and the new skank are a serious threat. But the skank is easier to knock off than the bitch.”

Tracy tried to let what she just heard sink in, “Wait a minute, why do they want to get rid of us? What was all that company history stuff you were talking about earlier? What did I do?! I just started and they’re trying to get rid of me already?!”

“Well honey, all I can say is one thing. Make the deadline.” Eva cocked her head to one side and fingered a lock of her golden hair.

“How am I going to do that? I've got piles and piles of work, Miranda brought more and more to me. And-and-and—”

“I’m fin to help you.”

HELP ME?!” Tracy was sure this blonde haired woman was crazy for sure.

“Yes, just as much as your ass as it is mine. Since I've been getting the cold shoulder, I've already got reprimanded.”

“Reprimanded? What did you do?”

“That’s just it, I didn't do anything wrong. We had a meeting with Mr. Monroe and I didn't know until last minute. However what they failed to tell me or more like chose not to tell me, was that I was supposed to bring my thoughts on the 5 year expansion and proposal. Well since I didn’t have that, my boss dug in my ass and wrote it down like I had stolen something. No matter how hard I try to defend myself, he didn’t want to hear it. To be honest, I was more hurt than surprised because he was usually a nice man and very understanding. It was as if a demon swallowed him.”

“Well who’s your boss?”

“Mr. Sullivan of course. He’s your boss too.”

Tracy just couldn’t find a reason to believe what this woman had said, let alone to say that one of the nicest men, the CEO of the company is a lying, cheating snake.

“How is that possible?” Tracy asked.

“You tell me. If circumstances were different I wouldn’t even piss in your face if you were dying of thirst. And excuse me for being so blunt. Since that’s not the case, to cover our own asses, we need to work together. Plus I want to know what everybody is hiding. Not even the female secretaries will talk to me let alone look my way. So if we plan to survive this, we’ve got to work together. Deal?”

What am I getting myself into? Tracy thought, “Ok, deal. But if you back stab me so help me Eva!”

Eva cut her eyes at Tracy. She almost resembled a large jungle cat that was focusing on their prey. Then her attention got diverted.

“That’s the least of your worries darling. I have a piece of advice for you.”

“Ok.” Tracy listened attentively.

“Always beware of the person who approaches you first. They’re the prologue to the bad news coming.” Eva tipped her chin up in a direction.

“Hey girls, I thought I would find you two down here getting better acquainted, huh?” said this overly cheery voice.

When Tracy looked, she couldn't help but let what Eva just said ring into her ears. There stood Miranda smiling like a Cheshire cat.

“What do you want skank?” Eva said with a disgusted tone.

“Eva if you keep acting that way, no one will want to be bothered with you. Not even Tracy. Tracy’s such a sweet girl and she has to put up with your bullshit.” Miranda apparently was representing her hood with the head shaking and finger popping attitude. Tracy was shocked but then wondered was all that Eva said truly the truth??

“Uh, no Miranda I’m fine really. We were just getting to know each other better since we will be working together.” Tracy smiled.

Miranda stared and the frown on her face said that she wasn't pleased that Tracy didn't sway to her side.

“Anyway I came down here for a reason, There’s going to be a proposal projection meeting in about twenty minutes in the usual place.” With that Miranda strutted off.

“See; now do you think all I said was bogus or the real McCoy?” Eva checked out her manicure.

“What’s this meeting about? Where is it at? I didn't learn any of this and well what do I do? I’m so confused.”

“Like I said,” Eva stood up and flicked her mane, “ We've got to work together, and apparently this is another way to boot us out of the door. But I’m not going down without a fight, and you strike me as the same type of person. Well shall we go?”

Tracy reluctantly agreed. The whole while wondering, what she had gotten herself into, and how this would affect her future. Many thoughts plagued her mind and scared her to consider what could possibly happen next. While she followed Eva to a large conference room, she bumped into Eva’s sudden stop.

Shit.” Eva blurted.

What? What’s wrong Eva?” Tracy tapped her shoulder, but it seemed like Eva was on a distant planet.

As the women enter the room, Tracy’s attention was snatched by the cold look of this man who sat at the head of the large table. Sitting close to him, like three pigeons, were the men of the Executive team. As Tracy stood there staring at these men, her memory began to run. The only black man on the team she remember meeting him when she first started her internship, he was her boss. He would hit on her and come on to her and talk filthy. She tried to understand why a man like him was working in such a prestigious place. But when eye contact was made with the table head, she couldn't help but gasp and recall where she had seen this man.

“Tracy Hubbard, it’s nice to finally meet you—officially of course,” He gave this smirk that sent chills up Tracy’s back, “I’m Mr. Monroe, the Executive Business and Financial Consultant.”

This man, she thought, this man did he know all along I was going to be a Senior Executive?

“I must apologize for not introducing myself when I saw you last night. I was caught in awe of your beauty, that it was rude of me to stare and not greet you and your boyfriend.” Mr. Monroe gave that eerie smirk.

I knew it! I can’t believe that strange man that stared at me the whole night is sitting here right in front of me.


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