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My best friend of four years, Aubrey, reaches over and pats my wrist. “Sweetie, it’s fine. This is no biggie.”

I muster up a smile and nod. Of course it’s no big deal to her. She’s been through countless marketing meetings. This is my very first one. Sure, I’m only an intern, but proving myself will earn me a spot at Center Stage Marketing. Something I’ve wanted since my freshman year in college.

Aubrey and I both earned degrees from the University of Texas and she somehow landed an assistant position to one of the top executives in the company. They actually pay her to be here, while I’m just the annoying tag along in training.

Diana Swagger, one of the most respected female marketing executives and the president of the firm, strides in and takes her seat at the head of the long table, which fills most of the room. She’s put together from head to toe—not one red hair out of place on her well groomed head. Her black suit screams money and respect, and from what I’ve heard about her in the staff lounge, she’s a no nonsense type.

Aubrey clicks her pen next to me, ready to jot notes for her boss. Even though I’m only here to observe, I mimic her actions and do my best to pretend like I belong.

“Can anyone read the goals we discussed two weeks ago?” Diana asks while she unbuttons her jacket.

A middle-aged man, to Diana’s right, rattles off a list of topics that might as well be said in a foreign language. None of the projects Center Stage currently has going are products or companies I’m familiar with, but I keep my eyes trained on him like he’s the most interesting person in the world.

“…And we received the go ahead from Black Falcon’s people to proceed with the children’s campaign,” he says.

This automatically catches my attention. Black Falcon hits a little too close to home. Most people know them for their music, but I know them because of their front man, Noel Falcon. The star-studded rocker is a huge part of my past. There isn’t one childhood memory that he’s not in.

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