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The Boss’s Terms

By Ernest Winchester

Copyright: 2010 By Ernest Winchester

The intercom gave a slight pop as it always did a second before her boss’s voice came through. “Miss Booth, come into my office, now!” There was an edge to his voice that Ruth had only heard occasionally in the year that she had worked as his secretary, after coming out of the secretarial pool the previous summer. The few times she had heard him take that tone was when he talked on the phone to some subordinate who had drawn his wrath.

“Yes, Mr. Hastings.” She released the intercom button and picked up her steno pad and grabbed a couple of pencils before rising and stepping toward the door to the inner office. A degree of apprehension gripped her as she opened the door and stepped in, but the stern look on his face nearly stopped her dead in her tracks. She took two more hesitant steps into the room before she noticed that the swivel chair where she usually sat to take dictation was not beside his desk Instead, it was over in the corner of the room near the windows, and at the same time she noticed that the window curtains were closed. It made the room darker than it normally would be so early in the morning. He usually only closed the curtains late in the day to block out the afternoon sun.

“Come forward!” He barked.

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