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What’s got him so nuts? I wondered. He was always confident, cool and collected. For him to be so nervous, I clenched my teeth, hoping it wouldn’t affect me.

Layoffs? Maybe just his job in jeopardy? It was something serious, all right.

The doors opened, and I knew the answer. It didn’t make me any less worried.

Out walked Christopher Shepard, head CEO. I recognized him from corporate memos and from pop culture magazines in check out lines. He strode past my boss, trying to keep pace.

My heart beat. I kept my head down, going back to my work, afraid he might see me procrastinating. First impressions.

He looked incredible. Chiseled, stunningly handsome, yet there was something I didn’t expect to see, a cold calculating visage. Penetrating eyes, roughness marked his face like a veteran.

He led my boss away from the workers. They were across from me, and I could see everything they were doing. Mr. Shepard leaned in, whispering to my boss.

He straightened, whispering back nervously. I couldn’t hear, but I knew it wasn’t anything good.

My boss nodded in my direction. Mr. Shepard glanced my way.

I froze.

No, he didn’t just look my way…he looked right at me.

They continued to stare, and I grew more worried, confused that they would point at me.

It wasn’t good. Whatever it was, I was in deep trouble. I went back to my work, trying to ignore them.

Until they approached. I turned, giving them a shy smile.


The brooding voice didn’t come from my boss. No, it was Christopher Shepard asking for me. I spun in my seat, shaking his hand, firm, yet not so firm that it hurt. The perfect handshake.

“Yes, hi, Mr. Shepard.”

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