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Invidious Pt 5

If you missed the previous chapters you can read them here – PART 1 / PART 2 / PART 3 / PART 4

She googled the weather in Orlando; it would be raining all day. Her flight had been sitting on the Tarmac at La Guardia for the last forty minutes, which meant she would be late for the big day. In all honesty, though this date had been set in stone for the last few months, certain events had occurred in the interim which now made this one-day trip, a serious interruption to her schedule. The new President had been sworn in, and the last year of unflinching loyalty was about to be rewarded. Her career deserved such recognition, anyone intent on taking on organized crime got noticed, but there were those who were intent on making her life miserable.

The morning after the shock elections results had come in, her name began to appear in the little irrelevant side stories that no one took notice of. It was carefully orchestrated of course, the political machinery behind the President Elect were media savvy enough to know what they were doing, and she trusted them. She remembered restraining herself when he called her and mentioned he wanted her serve in the DOJ. ‘It would be an honor’ she had responded without hesitation.

Two days later she received a phone call at an unusual hour. Four thirty was not the time that anyone did business unless it was urgent. She had grown accustomed over the last year, to the impromptu calls that required urgent attention, so she managed her sleep very carefully. That morning she was on the treadmill at the gym, a block from her beautiful apartment.

“Hello?” she didn’t break her stride nor her breathing pattern.

“Get to the office a little earlier this morning. Something has come up.” It was her boss.

“I’ll be there in two hours.”

She remembered the events of that morning so vividly. Her coffee that she would always make herself, had been perfected over the years of solitary living, and her staunch refusal to stand in line at Starbucks; It smelt beautiful. Her hair, now a vivacious and rich brown, she had brushed and combed on the short drive to the office. She never fussed about make up; she had been blessed with amazing skin. Her cotton shirt was pressed and fitted her toned physique without a ruffle. She examined herself in the reflection of her car window as she put on her winter coat. Winter had ended, but there was a lingering chill in the air, and a drizzle that was ever persistent.

“You need to look at this.” Her boss shoved a brown envelope across his desk to her.

“Good morning to you to Bill.” She settled down and browsed the contents. Careful not to betray her emotions. She crossed her legs and sipped her coffee. With one hand, she stroked the bridge of her nose. It was her allergies. Springtime always brought the pollen, and the allergies.

“What do you make of it?” he finally interrupted her.

She hesitated; it was not in her personality to make hasty responses. That’s why she was a respected attorney.

“Do I have time to go over this more thoroughly?” it really was too much to take in.

“You have an hour. Someone has asked for a personal interview, and I thought it would be in your best interest if you had it.”

“What type of interview Bill? …and you should have asked me.” She knew she was in no position to negotiate, but at least her dissent was noted for future reference.

He nodded as if to agree with her. “I don’t need to tell you that your personal life doesn’t really exist anymore. Make this go away, will you?” he directed her attention to the door.

She had grown used to the way he spoke. Very little eye contact, and meetings that lasted on average two minutes. He was a busy man. If he had any concerns about the contents of the envelope, he wasn’t betraying his thoughts. She had learned a lot in his service over the last four years.

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