Thursday, 31 January 2008

The Ex Boyfriend

Solicitor and I had a huge argument last night. We've argued before but it's never been this serious.

Solicitor had a lot of work to do last night so while he dug into the heap of files that needed to be read I decided to check my email on his laptop. I received the following email:

Elise. I miss you. I need to speak to you. Please call me or email me when you get this. I don't have your number. Whatever your situation is please call me. Bradley

He left his number at the bottom of the email.

Bradley and I were an item just over a year ago. Our relationship didn't last long. We were together for three months before he disappeared for two weeks without calling. At first I was worried that he'd been in an accident but I found out from one of his friends that he'd decided to go to Greece with a few friends.

Up until that point we'd had a good time together. He had a cheeky infectious sense of humour. I don't think we ever had a serious conversation. I cared about him but I don't think I loved him. I loved being with him.

When he finally contacted me after returning from Greece he acted as though nothing had happened. I didn't bother reacting. As far as I was concerned he didn't care enough to have a relationship and neither did I. We starting standing each other up. We went for days without calling or thinking about each other. I don't think we even officially broke up. We just never saw each other again.

The email was a shock. I have no idea why he would write something like that. At first I thought it was a joke so I emailed back:

Hi Brad. Long time no hear. Back from Greece yet?! Hope you're okay xx

I got one back within a minute of sending it:

Elise I need to see you. I'm sorry about Greece. Please meet me. Just the two of us. Like it should be.

I wrote an email back:

Brad I'm with someone. It's a bit late to get deep and meaningful don't you think? I wish you all the best. Elise xx

I sent it and got up to get some biscuits. Solicitor was still engrossed with work so I decided to make a cup of tea for us. When I got back to the living room he was on the laptop. I placed his tea on the table next to him.

"You want to tell me something?" I've never heard that tone from him before. His voice was soft but it sent chills up my spine. He turned the laptop so I could see the screen. Bradley had emailed back and it had been opened:

He won't find out. I'll meet you at the Arena at 8 tomorrow. Bradley

Solicitor was angry. Quietly angry. He sat in silence while I explained that I hadn't heard from Bradley in at least a year. The emails were a complete shock and I have no idea why he's decided to contact me. Unfortunately the emails that I had sent him hadn't been saved. The three emails from Bradley looked bad.

"Why were you going through my mail in the first place?" The words came out before I could stop them. I must have made me sound so guilty.

"You answered my phone when Aimee called, remember?"

"That was different!"

"How? You answered a call from my ex wife because you were curious. I opened an email from your ex boyfriend for the same reason."

"That was completely different! I thought she was in trouble. Which she was!"

"Don't give me that crap Elise! You answered because you wanted to know what was going on."

"You don't trust me!"

"To be honest, after reading that email, no I don't."

It was horrible. I started crying and walked out of the room. I needed to get out and take a walk alone. Solicitor stopped me with his voice.

"Elise get back in here!" I felt like a child. I slowly walked back into the room and sat down. I couldn't believe that he wouldn't take my word for what had happened.

"When you told me about Bradley you said it was a short pointless relationship."

"It was!"

"It doesn't sound like it from where I'm standing."

After hours of accusing each other of not having enough faith in our relationship I went to bed. Solicitor pulled out some extra bedding and slept on the sofa. I couldn't sleep. I kept looking at the bedroom door hoping that he would walk through it but he didn't. When I woke up he had already left for work.

My morning at work was horrible. I couldn't think straight.

Solicitor called me just before lunch. He apologised for last night. We spent an hour on the phone. I cried and told him that I love him and that I'd never do anything to jeapordise what we have. He told me that he does trust me and that he didn't mean to act the way he did. I'm glad its over. I can't wait to see him later. I miss him.

Wednesday, 30 January 2008

"One can only find himself if he is bored"

Work has been very boring recently. Everyone has thrown themselves into their work. I normally finish everything that I'm supposed to do in the morning when my mind is focused. When I'm on a roll I can multi-task and complete a number of reports at the same time as well as email and call people.

Without office gossip to keep the rest of my day occupied I've been spending my time planning dinner and sex games.

I once read a quote in Readers Digest "One can only find himself if he is bored" Anon

According to this quote I am a nympho/ chef.

Yesterday I printed out around 30 different recipes before ordering a few sexy outfits; a nurse, a French maid, and a cute white lace corset. I planned recipes to co-ordinate with the different outfits. E.g. The French maid with butter and peach soufflé. I think I'm losing my mind!

When I got home Solicitor was already there and he'd started cooking. He's a good cook, he can compliment flavours with natural ease. He was making mint lamb with red wine sauce and potatoes.

As soon as I entered the kitchen I was itching to do something. I kept getting in his way as I tried to stir the sauce. He got frustrated and ordered me to go sit down. I couldn't keep still. I set the table and paced around for a while. I finally sat down and started flicking through television channels when Solicitor came into the room.

"Dinner will be about forty minutes... What do you want to do?"

I jumped on him.

Forty-five minutes later we sat at the table for dinner. Solicitor wearing a pair of boxers and I was wearing his shirt. The food was fantastic. I asked him what he's put in the sauce but he wouldn't tell me. He laughed as I listed every possible ingredient that we had in the cupboard before I finally got the combination he used.

"What’s wrong with me? I can't stop thinking about food and sex. Am I losing it?"

"Na you’re just thinking like a man.... with a feminine touch!"

Tuesday, 29 January 2008

This means war!

I've seriously taken advantage of an easygoing boss for the last few days. I decided to take another day off on Thursday. The odd thing was that I had actually made it to my work building before I decided to turn around and head home. I sent Gay Boss a text on my way back:

Won't be in today. See you tomorrow. x

I did the same thing yesterday. I stopped at Costa for a coffee across the road from work before deciding to send another text and go home:

Not coming in today. Will be in tomorrow. Sorry x

Unlike most bosses Gay Boss didn't call me to lecture me on "giving notice of absence". When I arrived this morning (late because I spent half an hour in Costa contemplating on going home again) he acted like nothing out of the ordinary had happened. He didn't ask for any explanation, so I didn't offer him one.

As a result of my tardiness Solicitor has received a good deal of attention at home. Last night I dressed up for dinner and cooked him another three-course meal.

Or rather I dressed down for dinner...

I pranced around the kitchen in a red embroidered black suspender belt and stocking set complete with a matching red bra and thong. I clipped around in the 5 inch black stiletto heels that are too painful to wear out but perfect for walking inside the house.

Solicitor arrived home from work warn out and tired just as I was setting the table. He stopped in his tracks and slowly grinned as he took in my outfit. I smiled back and carried on laying out the cutlery, trying to act as normal as possible.

"How was your day?" I briskly straightened out the napkins and clipped into the kitchen to fetch the salad from the fridge. I could feel his eyes on me while he took off his jacket and tie.

"Not too bad. Had a meeting to negotiate a loan for a big client." He casually brushed past me to get a beer from the fridge, lightly putting his hand on my lower back to steer me out of the way. He leaned against the counter and started talking about the boring details of the meeting. I caught the amused look in his eyes.

The game had begun.

We both acted as normal as we could. We spoke about boring things such as work and the daily news. Every now and then we'd take it in turns to "make our move". As we sat down to dinner I casually leaned over for the saltshaker, my breasts inches away from his face. I smiled innocently and continued to talk about the debate on Mc-A-Levels. Five minutes later Solicitor got up to get another beer from the fridge. As he walked past he paused and traced a finger from my neck to my earlobe. He knows that I get turned on when he touches my neck!

This means war.

Throughout dinner the two of us struggled to stay focused on the conversation. I slowly unbuttoned his trousers and pulled his belt free as we discussed the pros and cons of a property market crash. He in turn unclipped my bra halfway through the main course. He smoothed the straps down my arms, brushing my breasts ever so slightly before pulling the bra away completely.

The game continued well after dinner. We washed up the dishes casually turning each other on while we covered all aspects of economic and political welfare. He finally cracked when I brought out ice cream for dessert and "accidentally" dropped a little on my thigh. He leaned over and licked it up.

All hell broke loose.

This morning we argued over who had cracked first. I'm convinced he had because he leaned over and kissed me first. He's convinced it was me because he had every intention of pulling away and talking about income tax but apparently I moaned and "cracked".

Moaning is not cracking, kissing is!

Maybe we should have discussed the rules first.

Wednesday, 23 January 2008

Dental Plan

I had breakfast with Stoner and Bimbo this morning.

We decided to meet at Granny's for a Full English Breakfast. By the time I got there Bimbo was sitting on the edge of the pavement outside heaving into the sewage drain. (The smell of crispy bacon doesn't agree with her anymore).

Being such a sensitive person Bimbo cried her eyes out for "ruining everything". She didn't mean to cause a scene but her raging hormones were attracting attention and sleazy smiles from the greasy men inside the cafe. I was desperate to leave and I practically dragged her away as she sobbed.

I called Stoner and told him to meet us at Costa instead.

Over muffins, lattes, cappuccinos and hot chocolates the three of us discussed work. Bimbo recently found out that our dental plan is going to be withdrawn soon. We're all going to be compensated with a salary bonus next month. I'm not too bothered about the dental plan. My teeth are fine and I've only ever used it to get them professionally cleaned. I'll probably put the bonus towards redecorating the bedroom.

Bimbo and Stoner seem a little more distressed about it than I was.

Stoner has fillings that need to be looked after. Well, he shouldn't smoke so much then should he? Stoner smokes about 20 cigarettes a day. And that's not including his spliffs. No wonder he has holes in his teeth!

Bimbo has a slightly more dramatic problem.

"Will bad teeth harm my baby's health?"

Stoner and I looked at each other.

"You're teeth are fine. And even if they were slightly damaged I doubt it will harm your baby."

"But what about its teeth?"


"My teeth were wonky before I had braces! And I've kept mine so nice since, so that the baby has nice teeth too!"

I let Stoner answer this one.

"I don't think a dental plan will alter your baby's teeth."

Sometimes Bimbo can be so strange! I really don't know where she gets information.

Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Statistically the most depressing day

Yesterday was statistically the most depressing day.

I woke up early as usual and turned on the television. The BBC News presenter joyfully told the world that it was going to be the most depressing day. I stopped half way to the bathroom and got back into bed.

It was a wonderful day! I called work at 8am and told Bimbo to let Gay Boss know that I had a viral stomach bug and I wouldn't be in.

I leisurely ate breakfast in my pajamas while I absently watched reruns of Everybody Loves Raymond and Just Shoot Me on Channel 4. I had a heavenly long shower and sang the entire Mariah Carey No. 1s album. (I love singing in the shower... My voice doesn't sound as bad with an echo!)

Since Solicitor was at work I took the opportunity to spend the day grooming myself. I finally used the manicure set that I've had for three years, I applied a soothing face mask and hot oil in my hair. I ran myself a lovely scented bath and drank cool glasses of white wine.

I spent the rest of the day preparing a wonderful evening meal. Solicitor was really impressed when he came home. I'd battered king prawns and made a Thai chilli sauce to go with them for starters. I made a Thai-style stuffed chicken breasts with coconut rice and vegetables as a main dish. For dessert I made cinnamon biscuits and homemade whiskey ice-cream. I can honestly say that it was perfectly cooked!

After yesterday I'm seriously considering becoming a housewife.

I completely forgot that I was supposed to be ill and I came in bright and early this morning in a wonderful mood. I bumped into Gay Boss outside Admin and he enquired after my health;

"How are you feeling Elise?"

"Wonderful! Why?" Oh Crap! "I mean... I'm feeling better. Much better"

"You look good...?"

"Yeah it must be all of that... um.. puking. Yeah it does wonders. Detoxes the body..."

I think he believes me. Good save huh?

Friday, 18 January 2008

He saved my life

I ran into an old friend on Wednesday night. Not just any old friend but a friend that saved my life years ago.

I stopped off at a Tesco Express on my way home from work to pick up some bread. The mixed raced man at the till had a nasty scar beneath his left eye. And a dimpled smile. For a moment we just stared at each other as memories flooded back.....

Ten years ago my best friend Amy's mum died. She went to live with her father in South London. At the time South London seemed like a completely different city. There were hardly any tube stations going South of the river. Not many people from North of the Thames ventured to South London unless they knew people there.

Amy moved to Peckham in Southwark, the borough in the centre of the two neighbouring boroughs; Lambeth and Lewisham. All three areas were almost as bad as each other. I had always had an impression of Peckham being the same as it was in "Only Fools and Horses." It was nothing like it.

To get to Amy's house I had to change buses on Cold Harbour Lane in Brixton in Lambeth. Although the side streets in Brixton were probably home to crack houses and gun related murders, this was not the worst part of my journey.

The worst part was when I arrived in Peckham. Peckham, at the time, was full of rival urban gang members. The most well known at the time were the "Young Peckham Boys". They hung out in groups of over twenty, wearing hoodies to hide their faces and attacked and mugged people as they past.

South London was so different to where I was from. I didn't even realise there were dangerous gangs in London. I had always thought the gangs in London were like the East-End organised criminals like the Krays. The type that don't attack unless absolutely necessary.

The South London Press Newspaper was always full of stories of random stabbings and gun related murders in and around Southwark, Lambeth and occasionally Lewisham. The incidents never even made local news. The worst one I read was an attack in a Church at a Christening. A woman holding the baby was shot in the head and died immediately. Her purse was stolen.

These people were alien. They were so intimidating that I crossed the road several times on one strip just to avoid walking past anyone. I was only 15 and I was terrified of being pulled into an alley.

On one occasion when I was on a bus home from visiting Amy a group of teenage girls got on. As they brushed past me one of them tripped over my school bag. I apologised and moved the bag onto my lap. She turned and stared at me. I avoided her stare and looked out of the window. She kissed her teeth and pulled me to my feet.

"Oi what did you say?"

Her face was almost touching mine. I didn't know what to do. I had never had to deal with a confrontation about something so small. I tried to smile and apologise again. My heart was beating so fast.

I remember being pushed onto the floor and I remember being kicked by all of the girls. They didn't stop. My hair was pulled so hard that I felt chunks being ripped out of my skull. One of the girls constantly hit me in the face with a plastic bottle. I suddenly felt a sharp pain in my side. It felt so cold. Shockingly cold. I instinctively held my side. Blood oozed through my fingers. I began shaking uncontrollably.

Although the bus had stopped, nobody on the bus moved to help. I think a few just got off and walked away.

Through my blurry vision I remember seeing a tall guy jump on to the bus and pull a girl away. She turned around and stabbed him in the face with her penknife before jumping off the bus with the other girls closely behind. The guy sank down next to me holding his eye and crying out in pain. Blindly I reached over and gripped his hand. My last thought before I slipped into unconsciousness was that I didn't want to bleed to death without somebody holding me.

I woke up in hospital with my family at my side. I had 18 stitches in my side, a few bruised ribs, a cut above an eyebrow, bruising around my eyes and a few small bald patches from where my hair had been ripped out. The doctors said I had been very lucky. Apparently the guy who had also been injured held me and put pressure on my wound before the ambulance had arrived to stop the bleeding.

His name is Nathaniel and I owe him my life. He stopped and helped when nobody else would. Even though he got hurt he still helped me. He's four years older than me and we stayed friends up until I finished school. Seeing him again on Wednesday was amazing. We went for a drink after his shift and caught up on life. A life that I may not have had if he had not stopped.

For a long time after I recovered from the attack I thought about what had happened. It was awful that people would hurt others in such a way without reason. Although the police were very helpful they never caught the girls that did it. The story was kept away from the press like so many others.

The first incident in that I remember reaching national news was two years later when a young boy was stabbed in the leg with a glass bottle outside Peckham library. His name was Damilola Taylor and he died at 10 years old.

Wednesday, 16 January 2008

Good! Now do it a hundred times.

Yesterday I thought it was time that I joined a new gym close to my new home. I googled local gyms and sports centres and I found a place called "Panther". Membership is cheap and they offer personal training specialising in kick-boxing. I decided to call and book in an induction and a training session. They booked me in for 6pm. My trainer's name is Ayudeji Jiddy.

Panther is situated near an industrial estate down a quiet road. I walked up and down the road six times before I spotted the tattered sign above the door of a small building. No wonder membership is cheap!

The inside of the building reminded me of the gym in Rocky. There was a boxing ring centred in the middle of the large hall with punch bags on the sidelines. The CV machines and weights were in an adjoining room. Unlike most gyms that are normally full of fat people trying to get healthy or sports people that are maintaining a toned frame, Panther was full of men with bulging muscles.

Shit! I should have just joined the Fitness First near Solicitor's work place. We could have trained together. Ran side by side on treadmills.

Ayudeji Jiddy (who insisted I called him Jiddy) has a strong African accent and looks a little like 50 Cent but with crooked teeth. He quickly ran through the motions of showing me how each machine worked before taking my to my assigned punch bag in the far corner of the big hall. He threw questions at me in a loud booming voice as he filled out official forms.

"What are you training for?"

This felt like an interview! A very scary interview.

"I want to get healthy."

Jiddy put down the form and studied me.

"You're not training as a professional?"

A professional? Is that what all these people are here for?

"Um... no. Is that a problem?"

"Eh! I'm glad! Your too soft!"

We began with an intense warm-up on the exercise bike. He increased the setting every five minutes. After half an hour my legs were pounding and I was sweating like mad. I was on the highest setting and I could barely push the pedal. I wanted to stop but Jiddy wouldn't allow it. He encouraged me to go on.

(By encouraged, I mean he shouted at me in his intimidating voice.)

After the 45min session on the bike he took me back to my punch bag and showed me how to punch correctly. He went through the motion slowly until I had perfected it.

"Good! I think you've got it... Now do it a hundred times."

After that he showed me a method of kicking. When I'd perfected it he said,

"Good! Now do it a hundred times."
Another method....
"Good! Now do it a hundred times."

By the end of the two and a half hour session I felt like I was dying. I was soaked with sweat and my muscles were killing me. I was desperate for a long hot shower. Jiddy has control issues. I'm not training for the Olympics I just want to get healthy.

My muscles are killing me. This morning I couldn't move. It hurts to pick things up. My upper arms can't take the strain. Walking is a challenge. This isn't right. I've had personal trainers before and none of them have pushed me this far on a first session.
I'm joining Fitness First.

Monday, 14 January 2008

Shoebox of Tampons

I took Friday off from work. Gay Boss thought it would be good to take a long weekend off so I could "maintain my mental health". I'm not crazy. I'm just a little jumpy. Its understandable with all the stress that I've been through recently.

Anyway, I took this opportunity to move the bulk of my things to Solicitors place. Yes, he asked me to move in with him! I know its soon. Its only been two months but it makes sense. I'm always staying at his place, I may as well move in. Financially it will save a lot of money. I can let out my place and the rent will cover mortgage payments. Solicitor has already paid off his mortgage so all I'll really have to do is help out with bills.

Everything was going so well. We cooked a lovely meal together on Friday to celebrate. We finished a bottle of wine and half a bottle of Jack Daniels and spent the night talking about everything. We decided to move the furniture around and we talked about redecorating the bedroom. I love the bedroom just as it is. The only thing I would change is the carpet. A wooden floor with a nice rug would look so much nicer.

On Saturday I started to freak out. Not about commitment but about my tampons. I didn't know where to unpack them. I couldn't put them in the bathroom cabinet next to his shaving foam could I? I couldn't put them in my underwear draw since it was was filled to the brim. (I recently bought lots of sexy underwear.)

As I looked through my toiletry box I started freaking out a little more. Body Shop Warming Face Mask. How the hell was I going to apply it without Solicitor seeing? He's not stupid. I'm sure he knows that I have a grooming ritual. But he's not supposed to see it! Even if its not on my face I don't want him to find face mask, tampons, epilator, hot hair oil just lying around the house. I was hoping to keep up the charade of "I look naturally gorgeous".

I'm not one of those women that wakes up and applies make up straight away. I've spent days walking around Solicitors place in joggers without make-up and without brushing my hair and I know I don't look bad. Its the under-cover grooming that makes the difference; the hot oil that I apply to my hair once a week that keeps it so thick and silky so I don't have to blow dry or straighten it, the warming face mask keeps my face blemish free so I don't have to wear make-up, the epilating that keeps my legs smooth and hair free!

I panicked and called the Queen of Beauty.

"(Bimbo) I have a slight problem. What am I going to do about grooming and where should I put all of my tampons?!"

"Its okay! Use shoe boxes. Shove everything in shoeboxes and keep them with your shoes. He'll never look inside! Stay in the bathroom and turn the shower on. Do everything you need to do in the bathroom. Keep the door locked!"

Wow. It sounded like a rescue mission! Bimbo has been with Pierce for years. She moved in with him when she found out she was pregnant. I can't believe she keeps up the "air of mystique" even with morning sickness and raging hormones. On the phone she told me she swears by shoeboxes and loud showers.

I carefully arranged the shoeboxes full of toiletries inside the wardrobe. I placed the shoes on top of them to make them look inconspicuous. No. It looked wrong. I took the shoes off. Much better.

This morning, over coffee and pop tarts, Solicitor asked me if I'd unpacked the bare essentials.

"Of course! Why?"

"Well you've still got shoeboxes full of girly stuff. You might find it easier if you unpacked them in the bathroom."

Maybe I was a little over dramatic. So what if he's seen my box of tampons. He's not stupid. He knows about "the time of the month". And he probably won't inspect the tubes and bottles of toiletries to a great degree.

There's no way I'm going to walk around with goo on my face though! There are some things that I will lock myself in the bathroom and turn the shower on for!

Thursday, 10 January 2008

"...I'm Gay"

Lunch with Gay Boss yesterday was quite eventful.

He took me to a fancy Italian restaurant a few miles away from work. I felt so guilty. I jumped a mile when the waiter handed us menus. I couldn't even read the menu properly. I stared at it for ages thinking about Stoner sneaking around Gay Boss's office.

"Okay Elise, what's going on?" Gay Boss sounded almost like a father. He poured me a glass of wine and squeezed my hand. "Are you...ill?"

Ill? What a fantastic excuse for strange behaviour! Yes, I'm ill. I have an incurable disease that causes me to act strange and jumpy all the time. Its a nervous disorder nervousakiller...osis... No that sounds fake. Killernervousis...?

I thought about lying but Gay Boss looked so concerned I decided to trust him and tell him everything.

"(Gay Boss) we've been friends for a long time. Seen each other through a lot, right?" I took a deep breath and squeezed his hand for reassurance. He cut in and sighed.

"Elise... I have to tell you something..."

Holy Shit! He did have something to do with it!

"...I'm Gay."

Okay. Um... where the hell is this going?

"If I could choose any woman to be with. If I were straight. I would be with you. But the point is... I don't like women... and as much as I think we're close it could never work."

What the fuck! I really should have cut in but I let him carry on...

"You've got a good thing going with (Solicitor). I think you should work on that."

"What the fuck are you talking about?" I really had to stop him there. I was embarrassed for the guy. "You're so bloody full of yourself! You think I fancy you?"


"I know you're Gay! Why else would I laugh my head off when (Old Prick) accused us of having an affair?"

"You know? Shit! Is it obvious?"

"Not really. I think I'm the only one that knows." There's no point in telling him Scruffy Artist and Stoner know too. "I'm very intuitive..." I found the Gaydar web-page in your Internet history.

We had a little laugh. He looked relieved that he could be himself around me. I wasn't lying when I said it wasn't obvious. He doesn't look or act gay at all.

When the main course arrived I told him everything. I told him that somebody changed the Master Contract and I found errors in it that could potentially ruin the company. Gay Boss was shocked and angry. "I didn't fight my way to the fucking top just so some wanker can fuck everything up!" Whenever Gay Boss gets genuinely stressed he swears a lot more. He got to the point where every other work was "fuck".

I also told him the CEO wanted me to keep it quiet, even from him. Gay Boss wasn't happy with that. He was pissed off that nobody had faith him him. I agreed with him before taking a quick loo break to phone Stoner. I told him to get out of Gay Boss's office and leaved everything exactly as it was. What the hell was I thinking, accusing Gay Boss of all sorts of crap?!

By the time I'd got back Gay Boss had decided that we have to keep everything to ourselves. CEO must be having the company investigated privately. If we get involved then it may look like we're the bad guys. He has a point. I guess Solicitor was right. I shouldn't get involved. I should just go to work and do my job.

Its quite an exciting thought though isn't it? There might be a spy working for the company at the moment. Someone pretending to be a cleaner or a part-time worker. I need to find out who. Maybe I could help. Be an undercover agent for a while. With a gun and one of those miniature video cameras disguised as a necklace....

Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Investigate Myself

I spent most of the day with Stoner yesterday. We locked ourselves in my office. (People must think we're having a sordid office affair!) I told him everything; the contracts with errors, hiring Solicitor, the phone call with CEO, keeping everything a secret. Stoner came up with the best solution to my problems... Investigate myself!

I love Stoner. He's the only person who would ever come up with something so exciting.

We thought of two possible suspects:

Gay Boss:- We couldn't actually think of a valid motive. He's a suspect because CEO told me to keep the details of the situation away from him. Gay Boss has access to the contracts at all times. It wouldn't be difficult for him to change anything if he wanted to.

Old Prick:- Revenge. Old Prick found it difficult to accept that he was "invited to leave". Initiating a law suite against Gay Boss a few months ago demonstrates his hatred for the company. He had access to the contracts at all times.

This is the plan so far:

Gay Boss:- The only way to know whether he's a friend or foe is to tail him. I've agreed to have lunch with him today to catch up on the last month and a half. We're going to an Italian restaurant a few miles away. (Gay Boss insisted on taking me somewhere nice to cheer me up.) Mean while Stoner is going to sneak into Gay Boss's office and look for anything suspicious. He has all the computer passwords etc.

I feel really guilty about doing this but I need as much information as I can get before talking to him. The last thing I want to do is screw up and tell him everything if he's got bad intentions.

I hope Stoner doesn't find anything. I really like Gay Boss. How many other bosses take employees out to nice restaurants to cheer them up? He's been really thoughtful the last couple of days. He thinks I'm having a real personal crisis. Which to a certain extent I am...

Old Prick:- This is going to be more difficult. The only thing we can do at work is ransack his computer and find information on what documents were opened and when. We have his home address but I have a feeling breaking and entering is a crime.

If we can't find anything on Gay Boss we'll think of a decent plan to investigate Old Prick.

The loose ends:- Solicitor knows everything. He's slightly sceptical about our plan. (By 'slightly' I mean he stalked up and down the living room telling me I've completely lost my mind and that I should just stay out of it before I get into trouble. I think the term "You are crazy Elise!" was said quite a few times. He looks so sexy when he's angry!)

Solicitor has sent the invoice directly to CEO so that Gay Boss doesn't find out that I hired a lawyer. CEO couldn't believe "how clever" I was to have taken care of that hiccup. Honestly, how stupid does he think I am?

Monday, 7 January 2008

Locked In

Its okay. I'm fine.

Gay Boss is back. He had a wonderful time in South America (despite being mugged by a cab driver in Brazil). We were supposed to have lunch together so we could catch up on everything. I tired to stay calm and collected but:

a) I'm praying that Alec hasn't said anything about me accidentally going into Gay Boss's msn account and accidentally arranging a date with a guy that I accidentally found from the Gaydar website.

b) I'm still in a dilemma. What shall I do about the situation with the contracts? I'm worried that Gay Boss might be involved with changing them. At first I was convinced that Old Prick changed them before he got sacked, but the more I think about it the more I think Gay Boss has something to do with it. Why else would CEO swear me to secrecy?

Because of the two points above I did something very random. I walked into my office and lock myself inside. Its nothing too dramatic. I didn't call anyone and threaten to kill myself or anything and I'm not the first employee to do this. Scruffy Artist has done it a few times. But he's a moody, arty type of person. Its not like me to do anything like this.

Gay Boss knocked on the door a while ago. He sounded so sweet. He told me that whatever is bothering me he's here for me. What a way to make me feel guilty! Bimbo called and left a few hysterical messages. She thinks I've snapped and gone into an acute phase of depression. I called Stoner to tell him that I'm okay, I just need some time alone. He's told everyone to leave me alone for a while.

I'm okay though. I've spent a few hours at my computer catching up on reports to occupy my mind. I'll have to wait until everybody has gone home later before coming out. I feel so stupid. If I come out now they'll be lots of people asking questions. I need to pee. I wonder how long I can do this.....

Friday, 4 January 2008

Gay Boss Vs CEO

I called CEO today. I thought I should tell someone and I couldn't get hold of Gay Boss.

CEO is a very old fashioned guy. Before he chose to become a non-executive member he had a large office with dark wooden furniture and a big moose's head mounted on the wall. No joke. Actually it might have been a deer. I'm not too sure. He always insisted on using the board room for all meetings, even if he was only meeting one person. He would sit at the head of the long oak table with the other person sitting at the other end where you literally have to shout to be heard.

He's a sweet man. Slightly sexist, but sweet.

After exchanging Happy New Years with each other I explained the situation. I basically told him that I had consulted a lawyer to be on the safe side and that the contract is currently being rectified. CEO expressed his gratitude and relief; "Well done Elise. Thank you so much for informing me. My God you are a clever girl aren't you?"

We spoke for another few minutes before saying out goodbyes. Before I rang off he said something very odd;

"Elise I want you to do something for me. This is very, very important." (he only ever says "very" twice when he's talking to a woman)


"Don't tell anyone about this contract business. Not even (Gay Boss). This is important."


This is ridiculous. How on earth can I keep this to myself? And why? Gay Boss is going to find out that I hired Solicitor when he receives an invoice anyway. Something doesn't seem right about this. What should I do?

Should I tell Gay Boss? He's going to find out sometime and I've always been close to him. I've never really lied to him. (With the exception of the time that I went into him computer and accidentally arranged a date with Alec the Camp Guy. And of course the other harmless lies; i.e. telling him that I'm almost done with a report when I haven't even looked at it, checking his email without asking, taking the odd sickie..)

Or Should I stick with what CEO told me to do? He said it was important... twice!

Thursday, 3 January 2008

£500 an hour and a dull headache

A hangover is not a great start to a new year, but I suppose most of us rarely begin the year without one. Mine lasted longer than usual. The dull pounding headache, sore throat, eyes threatening to droop shut, the nauseous dizziness. All symptoms still present.

It was still dark outside when I arrived to work yesterday (and today). My desk was in an absolute mess; notebooks, stacks of papers, the coffee stained mug that I forgot to put in the dishwasher on my way out. What a wonderful welcome back.

I reluctantly started sorting through the stacks of paper when I came across a Client Contract. A wave of panic suddenly hit me when I realised that I should have signed and sent it off before I left. I flicked through the pages making sure that signatures were in the right places before scrounging around for a pen to sign my dotted line.

The pen didn't work. Thank God it didn't work.

I noticed a clause that I didn't recognise. I'm not a lawyer and I find it hard to understand the language of may legal documents. There seem to be too many "hereafters" and "not-withstandings" and "hearontos" for me to make actual sense of them. But even I knew that this clause didn't sound right:

In the event of termination by the Client, as set out in 8 a) and b) above, (our company name) shall reimburse the Client its Fee figured on the proportion of term served to the date of termination.

Reimburse the Client? For what? Surely if the Client wants to terminate the contract the Client must pay the Fee up until that point? I read back on Clause 8 to see if it tied in. I noticed that it had also been changed... ever so slightly...

I immediately jumped to the conclusion that the Client had sneakily changed it. But I had to be sure. The contract is a generic one that had been drawn up a few years ago by our lawyers. I just had to check to see if the changes were on the master contract. To my horror they had been made. I don't know when and I don't know how.

There's nothing like blind panic at 7:45am, especially if your head already feels like its been trapped in a vice. I rummaged around like a mad woman rounding up copies of all of the contracts signed in the last year. I spent ours checking each one for flaws. The complicated phrases were making my head hurt even more. The Client shall.... hereonto.... endeavour to maximize... in consideration with 4 c) and 13 a)....

I felt sick. I was sick. Gay Boss is due back on 7th January. I had to stay calm and get a hold of myself. Throwing up in the disabled toilets was not the best way to deal with it. What should I do?

The pin dropped. I actually laughed at myself before bursting into relieved tears. (I must have still been a little drunk.) My boyfriend is a lawyer (Solicitor!). Not just any lawyer, my company is one of his key accounts! All I had to do was call him. Call him and ask him not to charge me £500 an hour to help me. Call him ask him to come to my office and help me. Wait! Redo my make-up have a cup of spearmint tea and then call him.

He pushed back his appointments and came over right away. After leafing through the master generic contract he found more errors and more changes that I didn't see. Solicitor told me that whoever changed the contract did so with the intention of permanently ruining the company. Luckily there don't seem to be any problems with the signed contracts so far. I was incredibly lucky that I didn't send of this latest one.

I have a suspicion that Old Prick may have changed it before leaving. I can't be sure. If it wasn't him then it looks like we have a serious problem on hour hands.

Solicitor had to charge the company for his services yesterday. Three and a half hours is approximately £1750. Lawyers don't work for free apparently. Gay Boss threw a fit the last time I took a client out for coffee and billed the company £147.67 (I got a bit carried away and took her out to lunch too). I hope he understands that this was a real emergency.

So much for me handling everything...