Hazel’s morning was off to a hectic start as she rushed to drop off her energetic twins at kindergarten before heading to work. Today held a significant event for Starlight as they were scheduled to meet with the shareholders of the corporation, Gentle Monster, in the morning.
Settling into a taxi as she embarked on her commute, Hazel’s phone rang, and Chloe’s voice. pierced through the background noise. “Hazel, where are you?” Chloe’s tone held a hint of
I’m on my way. I’m very sorry, I’ll be there soon,” Hazel replied, a tinge of apology in her voice. Her colleagues were already gathered, awaiting her arrival. They had coordinated to travel to Gentle Monster as a team, needing to finalize arrangements and rehear s e their presentations.
Yawning tiredly, Hazel recounted the chaotic morning she had experienced. The twins had awakened earlier than usual, demanding their morning sustenance. Coaxing them back to sleep had been a challenge, especially since Daisy had clung to her more than usual. Consequently, the morning routine had been a battle of wills, leaving the children drowsy and irritable. Getting them ready for school had taken twice the effort.
As the taxi carried her through the bustling city, Hazel couldn’t help but feel the weight of the ticking clock. “Step on the gas, please,” she urged the driver, who promptly complied, increasing the vehicle’s speed. It was rush hour, and Hazel knew she needed to make up for
Just when it seemed like they might catch up, they encountered an abrupt roadblock, a frustrating halt in the otherwise congested traffic. Hazel’s impatience grew as she scanned the surroundings. “What’s going on?” she wondered aloud. “The road’s free. Why won’t they drive?” she questioned the taxi driver.
The driver explained the situation with a respectful tone. “Sorry, ma’am. It seems an important person is making their way through these roads. It’s one of the demands that we leave the roads clear for them, ma’am.”
Hazel sighed in irritation, her frustrations mounting. She had heard of such situations before, where a VIP’s entourage passed through, and all other drivers were expected to slow down or halt entirely.
Refusing to let her precious time go to waste, Hazel decided to make the most of the situation. She reached into her bag and retrieved her laptop, determined to stay productive. As the taxi remained halted in traffic, she immersed herself in her work, seizing the opportunity to make adjustments, her presentation had to be perfect
Ethan exuded an air of wealth and power as he sat in his sleek car, the road around him conspicuously devoid of traffic-a common sight whenever he traversed these streets. It was a crisp, autumn day, and the scenery outside momentarily captured his attention. The
int leaves carpeting the pathway in hues of red and gold evoked memories of his teenage years, a time when he had walked these very streets on his way home from school. The sudden sense of déjà vu was palpable.
they drove past, Ethan’s thoughts drifted back to those days, the ones he had spent here
Hazel by his side. She had been a wide-eyed teenage girl, seemingly always in his orbit, ally stalking him until he Sually took notice. Hazel was the daughter of one of his
sential pekociates, fact he had initially disregarded. It was only when her fathe
had sacrificed his life to save Ethan’s own father that things had changed. Heartbroken by the loss, Hazel’s mother had soon followed.
Ethan’s father had insisted that he take care of Hazel, and so, begrudgingly, he had made a conscious effort to be kinder to her. Over time, they had grown closer, forged by the shared experiences of their youth. As Ethan drove, the memories became more vivid, and he found himself approaching a particular spot that stirred powerful emotions within him.
“Pull over,” he commanded abruptly, his entire entourage coming to a halt as his car stopped. With determined steps, he exited the vehicle and headed toward a small eatery. Standing in front of it, he was overwhelmed by a sense of déjà vu so strong it was almost suffocating. This was the very place where he and Hazel had shared countless meals during their school years. Back then, he had regarded her as a younger sister and would often treat. her to lunch.
Ethan peered through the large windows of the eatery, the memories flooding back to him. He visualized a younger version of himself and Hazel, clad in their sweaty school uniforms, enjoying dinner there on their way home from school. The familiar scent of mushroom soup wafted toward him, triggering memories of meals shared over fifteen years ago. It was a place he hadn’t visited in years, and the sudden rush of nostalgia was overwhelming.
“Boss, would you like some soup?” Ethan’s driver inquired, his voice breaking the businessman’s reverie.
Ethan shook his head lightly, acknowledging the offer with a faint smile. “No, thank you.”
Realizing that he had already taken up enough time, causing delays for other drivers and businesspeople, Ethan reluctantly tore himself away from the eatery’s window. He knew it
was time to move on.
“We should go,” Axel, his loyal assistant, urged.
Ethan nodded, his mind still lingering in the past for a moment. “Right,” he mused, before decisively declaring, “Let’s go.”
With his brief but powerful trip down memory lane complete, Ethan returned to his car, ready to resume his journey and the demands of his present-day life, leaving behind the echoes of his youthful camaraderie with Hazel.
Moments after Ethan’s departure, the previously halted traffic was finally allowed to resume its journey. Hazel, feeling a wave of relief wash over her, muttered to herself, “Finally,” as the cars around her began to move once more.
Her taxi pulled up to the Starlight building, and she hurriedly stepped out, practically sprinting into the bustling entrance. “I am so sorry,” she apologized as she caught up with Chloe, her colleague who had been waiting.
Chloe waved off Hazel’s apology, understanding the hectic morning she had endured. Without wasting a moment, they immersed themselves in work. Minutes later, their preparations were complete, and the team was ready to depart. The company vehicle awaited them just outside the building, ready to transport Chloe, Hazel, and five other colleagues to G.G.
The journey passed in a blur, and the car eventually pulled up in front of an imposing building. The group of coworkers scurried to the front desk, where Hazel took the lead in greeting the receptionist. The woman provided directions to the floor where the crucial meeting was scheduled to take place.
The stakes were high; this meeting with G.G could seal the deal for Starlight, paving the way for a lucrative contract. Their mission was clear: impress the representatives from Gentle Giants. As they made their way to the conference room, anticipation hung in the air.
Upon entering, they found themselves among a group of about eight individuals, with a conspicuously empty seat at the head of the table-the customary position for the chairman of the deliberations. With confidence, Hazel stepped forward, prepared to lead the presentation following a brief introduction.
She delved into the details with gusto, making use of slides, prototypes, and images showcasing Starlight’s successful track record with past design contracts. Her presentation. culminated with a grand vision of what the company planned to offer to G.G. Upon completion, the team was ushered out, leaving the G.G representatives to deliberate.
Unbeknownst to Hazel and her team, Ethan observed everything from behind the scenes. He watched her intently, captivated by her presence, even though she had no inkling that her presentation was being streamed into another room. Ethan was a man of few words, but his actions spoke volumes.
After the presentation concluded. Ethan summoned his loyal assistant. Axel, into the room. Axel, somewhat taken aback by his boss’s increasingly peculiar requests, couldn’t help but voice his curiosity. “I have a question,” he began hesitantly.
Ethan, a man whose decisions were rarely questioned, gazed at Axel with an air of restrained. intensity. “Starlight didn’t get a chance to make a presentation or impress me, so I decided to buy shares there to see what they had to offer. And I was impressed, so now I want Starlight,” Ethan explained, his voice carrying a subtle note of warning.
Axel, recognizing the unspoken boundaries, offered a firm. “Yes, sir.”
The situation remained perplexing to Axel. His boss had purchased shares in a company simply to witness a presentation? Ethan was proving to be increasingly unpredictable, but Axel had learned that it was unwise to probe further.
With a resigned sigh. Axel set out to carry out his boss’s directive.
The next morning, an email was dispatched to Starlight, arriving directly at the head office. It was a formal request for Starlight to become Tesco’s exclusive designer for a period of six months. While Hazel’s colleagues rejoiced at the prospect of partnering with such a prominent corporation, Hazel herself couldn’t shake her doubts. After all, they hadn’t made any formal presentation during their previous encounter. She couldn’t help but wonder how this opportunity had come about.
Hazel decided to voice her concerns, heading to her director’s office.
Her superior, however, dismissed her apprehensions. “They must have noticed our prowess and decided to give us a chance, the woman replied confidently. “We won the first bid, after all. That’s what the email stated. They would be going back to the original and first contract renewing their offer with Starlight. Hazel read the message with mixed feelings.
“So, what happens with G.G.?” she inquired, seeking clarity.
“We’ll still proceed with G.G./ her superior assured her, her enthusiasm undiminished. “We have a full year ahead of us. She was excited at the prospects, they had their hands really full this year. Two companies, one a renowned Empire and the other an impressive new
Can I head that GG one?” Hazel asked. She would willing do anything to avoid meeting
Ethan and bumping into him at his own company would be almost impossible. How could she work for her ex-husband she wondered desperately.
“Let me head G.G.” she pleaded
“The J.T. Starlight project will be your primary responsibility. That’s why you and Chloe. were transferred here in the first place. Stick to your assigned duties.”
Feeling her heart sink, Hazel left her superior’s office, the weight of her dilemma pressing heavily upon her. “Why did Ethan decide to go back to the original contract, even after knowing I was heading it?” she pondered, grappling with the uncertainty of how she would navigate the next six months working under her ex-husband’s watchful eye.
How she was going to survive the next six months under her ex-husband was something she couldn’t fathom. And her kids! She had to make sure he never met them.
Her children and their well-being remained her paramount concern. She was determined to ensure that her personal and professional lives remained separate, uncertain about how. she would handle the complex dynamic of working for her former spouse.
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