A week and half later…
Another one of these Wednesday morning partner meetings, she couldn’t stand meetings. Violet swiveled in her chair waiting for the other straggling partners to make it in for the weekly partner meeting at Brookes and Smithmeyer, LLP. As a partner in her law firm she’s come a long way from waiting tables for tips to pay for law school night classes. But she’d worked hard and had been rewarded, sometimes she thinks it’s not the reward she wanted but she’s proud and her mom is extremely proud of her, her only daughter a partner in a law firm. There are twelve partners in the firm, Harmon Brookes and Arnold Smithmeyer being the names on the sign over the door. Most she likes, but some can be kind of stuck up, wondering what a 34 year old black woman is doing becoming a partner in their old boys network. There are 44 attorneys at her firm, pretty good size and 12 are partners. It’s a lot of hard work to be a partner, late nights, weekends, no life whatsoever but she guesses the paycheck is worth it. Maybe one day she’ll go out on her own she thinks about Violet Maxwell, Attorney at Law, it’s a nice dream but today she’s just a partner. A 5 ft. 8 in, 175 lbs, not to skinny, not to fat, mid length black hair, cute face, nice smile, that wears reading glasses, partner.
“Okay, everyone listen up.” It’s Grant Carlyle he’s the managing attorney and a total dick when he wants to be. A little power went straight to his head. “We’re going to do things differently today, usually we start with a report from everyone regarding their case load and any cases they may be managing with senior and junior associates but we have a surprise.”
“Whoopee” Violet thinks, she looks over at Pam, she and Pam are the only two women of color as partners in this firm and the only 4 people of color that are partners, period. Pam Takahara is Japanese, tiny and sharp as a whip and she don’t take no crap from anybody, she heads the real estate division. They both smirk and roll their eyes. Surprises usually mean more work and maybe less pay. No one likes surprises.
“We have someone new joining our firm. He comes from a firm in Australia and has almost 17 years experience in his field. He’s not coming in as an associate he’ll be joining us as a partner.”
As Carlyle drones on about the wonderful new partner from Australia, her mind wonders back to the Borders bathroom. She’s been thinking about that lately, she’s been thinking about it quite a bit. “I wonder what happened to him, I should have told him my name, gave him my phone number, man could he eat some pussy. What was his name again Peter, Patrick…”
She looks up at the mention of the name Paul that was it Paul, and there he is standing in front of her all 6 ft. 2 inches, glowing gold skin, blonde hair, and green eyes of him, Paul. “Good god, what is he doing here?” she thinks, “Is he the new partner?” Her head goes down so fast and she feels Pam lean over and say in a whisper, “Well, hello there partner. He is fine too bad I have a boyfriend.”
She doesn’t look up, if she could turn red she would, beet red, “I can’t believe this the one time I’m naughty and it’s come back to haunt me for the rest of my life.” She hears him speak again and it’s just like the first time, so smooth, masculine and sweet, her panties start to get wet. She has to look up again, she does and as she does they catch eyes and she sees that something clicks in his brain and he smiles, not a nice “I’m the new partner smile” but a “I’m the spider, you’re the fly” smile.
“I’m so happy to be joining the Brookes and Smithmeyer team, I’ve known Harmon Brookes for many years, he mentored me and it’s a privilege to be working under him again. I look forward to getting to know everyone and working with you.” he says with a air of professionalism she hasn’t seen in awhile, he doesn’t even look nervous or the least bit perturbed at his knowing.
“Paul will be heading up our International law division since the recent departure of William Monahan and will be working closely with acquisitions and mergers department. And Violet…” Carlyle looks at her, she knows she looks like a deer caught in headlights, “He’ll be working closely with you on the Tri-Gear/Swisz Athletics merger since one of the companies is Swiss owned and we need his international law expertise.” She can feel her eyes visibly expand into saucers. Her worse nightmare has come true. “Paul this is Violet Maxwell, she heads up Mergers and Acquisitions. She’s one of our best.” Carlyle says and it almost sounds like he’s gagging as he’s saying it. Paul moves to come around the conference table to shake hands with Violet, she stands and shakes his hand and he takes his other hand to caress the back of the one she’s shaking with, it’s an intimate move that only she notices. He smiles that devil may care smile again and she thinks, “These underwear are ruined.”
“Why don’t you sit by Violet, Paul and as the meeting goes on she can bring you up to speed on what’s going on with that merger. “ Paul pulls up a chair next to her, he leans over and says “May I have a couple of pieces of paper to take notes, I forgot to bring a notepad with me.” Violet can feel the heat radiating off his body, she has to tighten her thighs or she’s going to walk out of this room with a wet stain on her skirt.
“Sure, no problem” she snatches a couple of pages off and hands them to him without looking directly at him and he leans into her ear and says “Thank you, love.”
‘Why doesn’t the floor just open and swallow me whole,’ Violet thinks.
After the meeting, Violet rushes back her office like the devil is on her heels. She sits behind her desk and thinks, “what am I going to do, I have to work with this man.” Pam walks in with Violet’s legal secretary and part time drag queen, Leonard toddling behind.
“What the hell was that all about, you shot out of there like the cops were after you.” Pam says and she sits and so does Leonard.
“What, what happened at the meeting?” Leonard says with the excitement of man that loves gossip in his voice.
“Nothing, nothing happened at the meeting? And what do you mean, like the cops were after me? I left that meeting like I leave all the others, calm, cool, and collected.” she says, trying to convince herself the lie is true.
“Knock, knock.” they all turn to look at the door and standing there is Paul Dudley, looking better than any man should in a 3 piece Armani suit it’s got to be Armani. “Oh, I’m sorry I thought I’d stop by and talk a little bit more about the Tri Gear/Swisz merger, if you have time?”
“Oh, I have time to talk,” she says fast and nervous, Pam and Leonard turn and look at Violet curiously. “Leonard don’t you need to be typing up that contract for me?”
“Oh yea!” he says. As he passes Paul he sticks out his hand and says “Hello, I’m Leonard Finkelstein her legal secretary and body guard.” And he giggles, he actually giggles.
“Pam, I’ll speak to you this evening at our regular meeting.” Pam looks confused and then it dawns on her their girl’s night is tonight with honorary girl Leonard, Violet, Violet’s best friend Nedra, and Pam at the The Pink Martini Bar. “Oooh, okay, that meeting, yea I’ll see you tonight” she turns to leave and says to Paul “Welcome to our family Paul.” He smiles.
Violet stands to come around the desk and Paul rakes his gaze over her, if he thought she looked cute at Borders, she was damn near stunning standing in this office with a black pencil skirt, hot pink blouse that clung to those luscious breasts he didn’t get an opportunity to experience and pair of black high heel sling backs, she wasn’t wearing any stockings which he found very captivating staring at those toned legs. There was split up the side of her skirt that just gave a look at just enough of her thigh to remember what the felt like in his hands. As she came around her desk to walk over to some files he tried his hardest not to stare at that spectacular ass of hers, it was round and high and made for loving. “Ahem” his head popped up, uh oh he’d been caught, he smiled sheepishly. She looked so adorable being stern, what a stroke of luck it was for him to have found her again. After those electrifying moments in the bathroom at Borders, he thought he’d never see her again, this had to be kismet.
“Mr. Dudley, the Tri Gear/Swisz merger is a very delicate one.” She said in her stern attorney voice.
“Please, call me Paul, no need to stand on ceremony. We know each other, somewhat,” he grinned as he made implications of their previous encounter.
“Paul…” as she sat in a tired heap on the leather sofa in her office, “I must assure you that encounter, we had was the only one of its kind. I am not that kind of woman, I just got caught up in the moment. Please don’t hold it against me.”
“I wouldn’t dream of it,” stated Paul empathetically. “You know sometimes we do things when we’re overwrought with passion, but I hoped you enjoyed it as much as I did. I was certainly disappointed when you just left me standing there.”
Violet looked ashamed, “I’m sorry, it’s just being that I’ve never done that before I was so embarrassed I had to get out of there. I’m sorry I didn’t mean to be…rude I guess.”
He smiled at her, showing all those beautiful white teeth, he did have the most gorgeous smile she thought Colgate ad all the way. “It’s okay, I forgive you. Now is it possible that we can start from there?”
She looks shocked and wary, “Oh no, I’m sorry our relationship from now on has to be strictly professional. I don’t want the drama or gossip of an office romance. My career means a lot to me, no I’m sorry, Paul.”
“Oh, okay then, there isn’t anything I can do to convince you?” he says with a sly smile.
“No, I’m sorry” Violet had learned her lesson early in her career about office romances when she dated another attorney at the first firm she clerked at during law school and when it ended it was a disaster, he tried to get her fired and everyday she went to work after that was horrible he was an associate with the firm and he made her life a living hell until she finally had to quit. No, she would not be revisiting those waters. Because this man was so fine and so accomplished and friends with one of the partners, she wouldn’t have a chance if it ended badly.
“Okay.” It seemed as if Paul was resigned to his fate. “Why don’t we do this, I’ve got quite a few things to take care today and we need to discuss this case file a little more. Why don’t we go out to dinner on tomorrow, because it seems you have a business meeting tonight? I’ll pay.”
“Well, why don’t we let the firm pay, that way I wouldn’t feel like it was personal or a date. There’s a wonderful steakhouse called Rockwell’s that the firm has an account with, how about it?”
“Yea, sounds absolutely fantastic, I’ve been craving steak lately. How about 6 pm tomorrow after work, we can meet there if you’d like. I’ll look up the address on the net.”
“Okay, sounds good, I’ll bring a copy of the case file and any notes. I have two paralegals helping me out on this and still have a full caseload but this is big and as I said before delicate, the SEC will be all over it if we don’t get it right.”
“Sounds great, Violet I look forward to hearing about it in more detail at dinner tomorrow.” Yea, she thought he was resigned to his fate but Paul didn’t make it this far in life by just rolling over and playing dead he thought as he exited her office. He’d play it smooth for awhile and then catch her off guard and before she knew it, she’d be his, his very own Violet.
Leonard and Pam sat the table with apple martinis already in hand as Violet and Nedra came in, late as usual.
“Where have you two biddies been?” Leonard says with an attitude.
“In traffic, if you want to know fool.” Nedra smarts back. Nedra has been Violet’s best friend since 9th grade when they met in Mr. Andrews English class. Nedra’s one of the greatest and most loyal friends Violet has, always there to cheer her up and cheer her on. Nedra Thompson with her smooth chocolate skin, portly frame she stands a few inches shorter than Violet, she keeps her hair short because she has twin boys and a husband that keep in perpetual motion but these Wednesday nights with the girls are a wonderful excuse to cut loose. Nedra’s husband, Damien is an assistant coach for local college football team so time away from a house full of men and sports is a delight for her. She works as a freelance photographer and met Damien as she was taking photographs of one the games and they have been in love ever since.
Pam has been a long term relationship with her boyfriend Alejandro Quintana for 6 years, Alejandro is from Argentina and he’s 8 years younger than the 44 year old Pam, with lots of South American spice, those two in an argument is sight to see. Alejandro’s an emergency room doctor and the sexiest thing in the northern or southern hemisphere, well according to Pam. “Well, it’s about time Leonard and I had to start without you two.” Pam’s already slurring a little, she’ll be cabbing it home tonight.
“Yea, girlfriends I was thirsty.” Leonard Daniel Abraham Finkelstein, the Jewish drag queen extraordinaire. When he first came to work for Violet as her legal secretary, his first day he came in full make up and she thought this is the ugliest woman or the prettiest man she had ever seen. He was also hilariously funny and would say anything to anyone and fiercely protected his boss, he worked liked a Hebrew slave for her gladly. Didn’t take long for him to be included in girl’s night out and become good friends with Violet.
“Well, sorry guys you know I have to pick up my girl and then trudge down here through evening traffic” sighs Violet. “Anyway neither of you look like you were at a loss for things to do or drink.”
The waitress comes over looking slightly bored and takes their orders, “Dirty martini for me.” Violet loves them dirty.
“A diet coke for me” states Nedra looking around the table at these drunks. She laughs she doesn’t drink but then again with Nedra drinking would only make it worse. She’s the designated driver for Violet and will pick her car up from Violet’s townhouse and drive back to her home later in the evening.
“Okay, here we go since you’re here Violet, please tell me what is up between you and Mr. Delicious?” Pam asks accusingly.
“Mmmm hmmm” says Leonard, he and Pam are always ready to gossip.
“Me and who?” Violet plays dumb.
“Mr. Paul Dudley, who I have deemed Mr. Delicious from now on.”
“Mr. Delicious, Paul Dudley, who’s that?” Nedra asks.
Violet looks like she’s in the interrogation room at the police station under the hot lights, well she guesses she has to tell them sometime, why not now. “I’ve met Paul before.”
“Where?” Pam shouts.
“Keep it down Pam. I meet him at Borders, last Saturday.” Violet confesses.
Nedra turns to look at Violet, “At the Borders. Was this some kind of blind date and you didn’t even tell your best friend.”
“No, it wasn’t a blind date. You guys know I’ve been trying to rekindle my dating life. I’m finally at a point that if I really wanted to date someone again, I could. So I went into the Borders to…” Violet sighs, this is so embarrassing, “…pick up some books on sex.” Pam doubles over with laughter, Leonard laughs so hard he spits out most of his drink, Nedra just chuckles and shakes her head. “ Listen it’s been a long time since I was intimate with anyone, I just wanted to brush up, you guys know the last guy I was serious about left me high and dry for ex-girlfriend, mother of his two children. So I have confidence issues, I’m just trying to get my mojo back.”
“Oh girl, please. You have more mojo in your little toe than most women do in their whole bodies” reassured Pam.
“Yea, V you got it going little miss, beautiful, accomplished, a partner in a law firm, get out, don’t worry about it, it’s just like riding a bicycle you never forget,” laughed Nedra. Leonard joined in reassuring her “Violet you are the beautiful black woman, I long to be.” Violet smiled, she was pleased to have such a group of loving and loyal friends.
“Well, anyway you guys I was in the aisle sitting down with a stack of books beside me when I looked up and saw him, Paul. And let me say ladies and you too Leonard, he was looking all types of fine. I think my mouth dropped open. He came over and asked me about whether I knew where the books on oral sex. I told him where they were and he picked one out and winked at me.”
“Is that it?” Pam looked confused.
“No Pam, that’s not it. He was leaving and I was going to follow him up and ask for his number but I didn’t see him at the register, so I headed to bathroom. Well…he pulled me into the family bathroom and gave me the best cunnilingus of my life. He didn’t need any book.”
There was an audible gasp at the table.
Nedra looked shocked, “You let some strange guy, eat you out in a public restroom” she huffed.
“You go girl.” Leonard hollered.
“Go nothing. That is just not like you Violet.” Nedra chastised.
“Well, I say he’s not a stranger anymore so what does it matter.” Pam chimed in “Now, that he’s working with you are you two going to continue to explore what other interesting places you can find to have sex.”
“Oh no we will not,” Violet said definitively, “I will not be doing that Pam. We work together and closely do you know how bad it will be if it ends up badly between he and I.”
“What do you mean, he’s a super fine, good looking, reasonably nice, sane guy and you’re not gonna hit that again. You’re crazy.”
“I’ll take your place.” Leonard laughed. Violet just smirked at him.
“No, Pam I will not. My job is important to me and my bills. If things don’t work between he and I, no that’s a working disaster waiting to happen.”
“You are absolutely right, Pam please she cannot do this, if he was outside the firm maybe but they are working together, ethically that’s really asking for trouble.” Nedra warned.
“Oh you two are so dry.” Pam sighed “It’s not like we have any rules against partners dating or even co-workers dating.”
“Yea, but it is frowned upon.” Leonard spoke up, “remember the Raven Delano and Ryan Cartwright incident.” Raven and Ryan had dated for a short time, she was an associate and he was a paralegal and it ended with her sending him a dead bird in the office mail.
“Oh yea.” Pam and Violet said at once. “That was ugly, ugly, ugly.” Pam remembers, Ryan had to get an order of protection against her and Raven ended up without a job.
“Well, that just proves that I’m right. We will not be dating, although we will be going to a business dinner at Rockwell’s tomorrow night.”
They all looked at each other and then at Violet. “Dinner huh?” said Pam, “Well tell me if he has a nice house and whether he has Egyptian cotton or satin bedsheets.” Then she and Leonard started to laugh uproariously.
“I am not dating him,“ thinks Violet and she was determined to keep her promise to herself. ©