I don’t know why he’s angry. He has no right to be angry. I’m the one who should be angry. He’s questioning my work. No one questions my work.
“I’ll get my report,” I say and pivot on my heel to march out of the room.
I ignore the rest of whatever he says. If I don’t get out of his office as soon as possible, I’m going to kill him. I know killing’s wrong, but if anyone can get away with murder, it’s me. I know numerous ways to make his death appear to be an accident.
Alternatively, I can dispose of the body in such a way as to ensure it’s never found again. The biomass project I’m working on in my hometown of Winter Falls would be a perfect place. No. I shut those thoughts down. I can’t corrupt the project with a human body. Besides, the project isn’t ready yet.
The mere fact I’m contemplating corrupting my project is an indication of how strong my anger is. How dare Beckett question my work? Who does he think he is?
I am aware he is the CEO of Clean Mountain Environment and technically my ‘boss’, but I maintain I don’t need a boss. I’ve been working at the environmental engineering firmever since I completed my master’s degree eight years ago. I’ve proven myself to be an independent worker who finishes her projects on time – if not ahead of time – with hardly any complaint from customers.
I print the report – in triplicate as you never know how many copies you’ll need – and save it on an external device as well before returning to Beckett’s office.
I place the items on his desk. “Here you are. If there’s nothing else...,” I trail off as I make my way to the door.
“Hold up,” he says, and I stop a mere footstep away from the door. “I want to discuss your recommendations to the city.”
He wants to discuss my recommendations? Is he questioning my work? How dare he!
I should quit. I don’t need the aggravation this man causes in my life. He telephones and messages me at all times of the day and night as if it’s his right and interrupts my personal life with questions that could easily be answered during working hours. Ever since he became the CEO, my work-life balance has disappeared.
Do not misunderstand me. I love my job. I love my chosen field of work. I don’t mind working extra hours. I have no problem with the work portion of my work-life balance being on the heavier side. I do have a problem with not having control of how the balance is maintained.
Unfortunately, quitting isn’t my best option. Clean Mountain Environment is the only environmental engineering firm within driving distance of my hometown of Winter Falls. Unless I want to relocate – and I don’t – I have to persevere with Beckett as my boss.
“Perhaps it would be more helpful if you read my report and my recommendations first,” I suggest to the door since I can’t turn around without it being perfectly clear to my boss how pissed off I am at this moment.
“Come sit down,” he orders. “You can explain your recommendations to me in person instead of me having to read a boring report.”
I bristle. My report is anything but boring. It outlines the numerous avenues White Bridge can pursue to improve their recycling program and how we can assist them with this endeavor.
While I realize this type of work sounds boring to the majority of people, I maintain it’s fascinating. Growing up in Winter Falls – the first carbon neutral town in the world – gave me an appreciation of the environment and how important it is. Inventing creative ways to save it is invigorating.
I inhale a deep breath and count to ten before letting it out. The action doesn’t calm me – at least, not completely – but it is enough to smooth out the anger in my face.
“I didn’t realize you needed my help understanding recycling,” I say as I sit down across from him.
He chuckles and his blue eyes sparkle. “Good thing you’re here to help me then.”
I frown. He isn’t supposed to be amused. He should be offended.
“If you don’t understand recycling methods, you shouldn’t be the CEO,” I tell him.
The humor disappears. “Do not question my competency,” he growls.
My core trembles at his growl and I cross my legs to relieve some of the growing tension. Beckett’s eyes drop to my legs. When his gaze returns to my face, heat is evident in his eyes. I want to run away before I lose control of my sexual desire for him, but I quash the impulse. Running away won’t improve the situation.
I must continue to maintain strict control over my emotions. My sexual desire is immaterial as he believes I’m incompetent. I will never spend time on a man who thinks I don’t know how to do my job. Besides, he’s my boss. Work relationships are statistically doomed to fail.
Even if such a relationship weren’t doomed from the start, working with someone you’re personally involved in is complicated, and I don’t do complicated.