Thank you for voting in the poll. I got less suggestions this week, but that gave me the freedom to add a few more characters and possibilities to our story.
I’m adding the old part(s) in each new post, so you can reread them to jog your memories or get familiar with the story if you missed the start.
If you want the new part continue to ‘** NEW **‘.
Don’t forget to vote for the next part and share your ideas in the comment section.
The poll will close at 5pm CET on tuesday, the next part is due on wednesday.
The only sound in the empty office had been that of Emma typing. When she finally stopped the sudden silence reminded her that she was the last person left. She couldn’t believe her boss had come – five minutes before closing time – with one last assignment. Everyone had left by now and she was sure she had missed her train home. After turning off her computer she was left in darkness, wondering what to do. She had definitely missed her train and for the next one she’d have to wait over an hour.
She could go ask her boss for a ride home. She wasn’t even paid for these extra hours, so it was the least he could do. She just hoped he was in a good mood. (option 1)
Perhaps she should go by the other offices first. If any of her colleagues were still at work they might give her a ride. (option 2)
No, she didn’t want to burden anyone. There wasn’t anyone left anyway. She should just go to the train station and wait for the next train. (option 3)
Passing by her boss’ office, Emma could hear he was still at work. Imagining him behind that large wooden desk he was so proud of, the short flame of courage winked out and she quickly strolled by without knocking. Embarrassed by her own lack of confidence, she ignored all the other offices and any chance of a ride home and made her way outside.
On her way to the trainstation she mentally scolded her own shy nature. Waiting outside in the cold would be her punishment, perhaps next time she would be able to ask someone for a favour.
She arrived at the station early, three quartes of an hour before the next train arrived. But it seemed she was not the only one who had missed her train. A young woman, sitting on a bench, was having a heated conversation with her phone. Emma could not help but overhear what she said, explaining why she would be late. “I’m not with a boy!” and “No dad, I’m too old for that.” Emma blushed having to witness this half of the conversation. She hoped the girl was not in too much trouble for missing the train and wondered what she’d be too old for.
Mere moments after the girl hang up however, she got her own version of an angry call. Her boss.
“Emma, where did you run off to?”
“I went to the train-station sir. I finished that assignment and sent you the documents.”
“Why didn’t you come and tell me? I had something to ask you. This is really not professional of you…” Emma listened with only half an ear at this point. When her boss was off on one of his rants, it was best just to agree. Even though she didn’t see why she should tell him she was leaving when she was already working overtime anyway.
“Sorry sir.” She answered when the tirade seemed finished. “I didn’t realise you…”
“Nevermind that, we’ll talk tomorrow. Are you still at the train station?”
Emma startled at the sudden interruption. “Yes sir. I’m waiting for the next train.”
“Is there a young woman there? Twenty years old, long blonde hair, probably wearing a skirt that’s inappropriately short.”
Emma looked at the girl she had observed before and raised an eyebrow. “Yes, I think I know who you mean.”
“Is she with a boy?”
Emma blushed. “No sir, she is alone.” Was this her boss’ daughter? She wondered.
A small silence followed before he answered again. “Good… Tell her she needs to do her chores when she gets home.”
With that he hung up the phone and Emma stared with a confused blush at the young woman. Did he really expect her to approach a stranger – hoping it’s the right person – and tell her to do her chores? The girl however seemed to have listened in on her conversation as well and stood up. “Was that my dad. His name is Erik, do you work for him?”
Emma blushed deeper. “Ehh, I guess yeah.”
The young woman threw her hands in the air and turned around angrily. “I can’t believe he sent someone to spy on me.”
“No, wait.” Emma yelled as she walked away. “He didn’t. I always take this train home. He called me to yell at me because I left without telling him.”
The girl turned around. “Really? Does he act like that at work too?”
Emma blushed. She wasn’t sure she should complain about her boss to his daughter. But she seemed like a friendly girl. “He can be a difficult boss sometimes.”
The girl laughed. “I can imagine. I’m Sarah by the way.”
“Emma” She shook the offered hand.
Thanks to this chance-meeting those fourty-five minutes waiting for her train were not as boring as they could have been. She learned a lot of funny stories about her boss, gossipping with Sarah. At some point she even managed to mention that her dad wanted her to do her chores. Making Sarah blush in turn. They even chose seats next to eachtother and continued their conversation until they reached the next station where Sarah had to get off.
The rest of her travel-time she wondered how it would be to have Erik as her father. She decided she admired Sarah, she must have a very strong personality. For herself, she was happy she only had to see him from nine to five – and occassionally a bit longer.
Right before arriving home, she got a message on her phone.
“Fancy getting a drink before we catch the train tomorrow? Sarah”
Emma blushed and started to type an answer. Not really sure what to do.
She could accept the offer, she’d had a great time after all. (option 1)
But once was enough right, she better say no before her boss found out. (option 2)
Or perhaps she could just tell him, he wouldn’t be able to blame her then, right? (option 3)
Well, on second thought. It might be better if Sarah told him. (option 4)
** NEW **
“It was really unprofessional of you to just leave without saying anything Emma!”
Emma blushed. When Erik had called her to his office, she thought he’d somehow found out about her plans with Sarah. She hadn’t expected he was still angry about her leaving.
“Was catching your train so important that you decided to only do half of your work? Can you imagine how embarrassing it was for me when I got an email from our client telling me your work was not complete, after I assured them it was?”
Emma looked up in surprise. “But it was complete, I’m sure of it.”
Her boss’ angry look told her she was wrong. “In English yes. But they specifically asked for it to be translated in German and French as well.”
Emma blushed even deeper. “Oh, I didn’t see. I mean. I must have overlooked that. I’m sorry I’ll do it right away.”
“No.” Her boss dropped the stack of papers he was holding – probably a print of her assignment – on the desk. “You have other work as well. Work that was actually planned for today. You’ll need to finish that first or you’ll get behind on even more assignments. When you’re finished with your actual work, you can come here and work on the translations. If that means staying late again, I’ll make sure to keep you company while everyone else is gone.”
“Yes sir. Ehm, thank you.” Emma replied, unsure what to say.
Later that day Emma made her way back to her boss’ office. Everyone else was packing and ready to go home. With a blush she thought this felt a bit like going to detention after school. Being held late because she hadn’t done her work properly. She softly bit her lip, she’d already sent Sarah a text that she would be a little late.
Her boss was sitting behind his desk and had apparently made some room for her right opposite to him. Her printed assignment was waiting for her. Silently she placed her laptop next to it, took the chair and started working. Her boss didn’t even look at her.
She worked quickly, afraid to look up and see her boss staring at her. But when she had finally finished both translations, he hadn’t bothered her at all. “Ehm, It’s finished sir.” She said.
He looked up from his own paperwork. “Are you sure? I don’t want to have to call you in the weekend if it’s not.”
“Yes sir, I’m sure.”
“Good girl. Sent me a mail and then you can go home.”
Emma blushed for no reason and sent her boss the assignment before quickly leaving his office.
She found Sarah waiting for her at the small café where they had decided to meet. She was accompanied by a man she didn’t recognize from the back.
“Alex!” She said when she walked around them and saw his face. Alex worked in finances in her building. He was handsome, friendly and sometimes a little too flirty. “Nice to see you, I didn’t know you met Sarah.”
The girl blushed and Alex smiled. “Oh we used to date. Not that long ago.”
Emma grinned. Alex dated the boss’ daughter? She was sure Erik hadn’t known, the way he seemed to want to keep her away from boys. “Really? How did that happen?”
Sarah seemed to be blushing. “Not now Alex, you can tell her some other time.”
‘Oh come on, it’s such a good story…” He ignored Sarah’s plea and turned to Emma. “I had found a mistake in one of our bills, so I went to Erik’s home. Sarah had just returned from school, apparently late, because she was in trouble with her father. I managed to catch a glimpse of her and decided I just had to meet her.”
Sarah took a quick gulp of her drink and interrupted him. “Well Emma’s the one who is in trouble now. My dad’s made her work late twice in a row now.”
Alex grinned deeply. “Really? Now that’s a story I’d like to hear.”
Emma blushed. “Well, it was just a misunderstanding really. I forgot to translate one of my assignments, so I had to catch up on it after work.”
“I see, so he kept you after work for that? Perhaps next time you give me a call? I’ll happily wait around so I can give you a ride home afterwards.” Alex finished his drink. “But for now I have to go. Nice to see you again Sarah, bye Emma.”
Emma raised an eyebrow at her new friend. “What was he laughing about?”
“Oh, nothing. Just an inside joke.”
“So you used to date? Why did that end? You seem to be good friends still.”
Sarah looked down at the table between them. “Well I, I figured out I’m not interested in men that way.” She looked up straight into Emma’s eyes.
Emma blushed and looked away. Was this a date? She suddenly wondered. She found her self playing with the ring on her left hand. No, it was just two friends out for a drink. She let go of the ring. Her husband probably wouldn’t even care if it was a date anyway, the way he acted recently. When she got home yesterday, he was sitting in the sofa, the food left for her cold on the kitchen table. They hadn’t talked in days. Hadn’t even had sex in months. With a blush she realised Sarah had said something. “I’m sorry?”
“I said I really like your dress. The colour matches your eyes.”
Sarah’s ringtone saved her from having to answer that. Quickly she picked up. “Where are you? Are you out with that boy again?” Emma could hear her boss’ voice through the phone, he was talking that loud. “I’m not!” Sarah replied.
Emma looked away, and noticed Alex still at the bar. He was looking at them and smiling. Perhaps she should go talk to him and give Sarah some privacy. (option 1)
Although, she already seemed to be on a date with someone, flirting at a bar with a guy from work – she was sure Alex would try and flirt – would be a bad idea. She should try and help Sarah, perhaps tell Erik she was with her and not with a boy. (option 2)
Or she could take her chance now and go home. Perhaps the food would still be warm this time, perhaps her husband would smile at her today… (option 3)