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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

(In)Discretion

The message had been vague. An industry type. I’ve been personal assistant to a well-known TV producer (closeted queen) and, most recently, an Oscar-winning costume designer (Oxy addict). But don’t expect any tell-all books from me. I have a reputation for being discreet. Plus, I can’t spell worth a damn.

I opted for my ivory Dolce pantsuit—a castoff disguised as a Christmas bonus from the costumer. The meeting was held in a rented Burbank office. Interviewing with a third party is typical, as these clients are far too busy for such minutiae. The burnt-orange man in the summer sweater barely looked up as he detailed the job.

“He works all hours and likes to have somebody on hand. Are you OK with a live-in position?” Without waiting for my answer, he went on. “Truth is, he’s lonely. But I didn’t say that.”

Coaxing me out of my $1200/month shithole wasn’t hard. And I understand lonely. I’m a parentless only child. My father sold his first novel and moved us here from Ohio when I was ten. Within a year, he’d performed the clichéd disappearing act with some surgically enhanced starlet. My mom succumbed to breast cancer a few years back—shortly after my college graduation. Oh, and I haven’t had a decent date since Bush No. 2 was in office.


*

The gates part before I announce my name to the box. As I step out of my car, the main house’s enormous, ornate doors fling open.

“You’re a vile, decrepit, shitstain of a man!”

A surprisingly refined-looking woman in a quaint peasant blouse bursts out. She furiously shakes a leather satchel, littering the ground with yellow papers.

“Good luck, girly,” the woman scoffs, dropping the bag at my feet.

I watch her speed through the closing gates before turning toward the house. A handsome, gray-haired man in a stately monogrammed bathrobe appears in the doorway. After surveying the paper trail, he shrugs and grins sheepishly.

“Hello, Erica,” he says.

“Hello, Dad.”

#

This week's Trifecta Writing Challenge: The entry must be 33-333 words and include the word "quaint" as defined below:

QUAINT
a: unusual or different in character or appearance: ODD
b: pleasingly or strikingly old-fashioned or unfamiliar <a quaint phrase>


Word count: 333

15 comments:

  1. I can surely understand her not having had a decent date since Bush 2 considering the state of the country. :) And I would echo, good luck, girly even, or maybe because it is her dad. Good twist, Ivy... you're very good at that. I knew it was coming, but didn't guess what it would be.

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  2. Oh my. I'll bet that would be a difficult working relationship. Great story!

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  3. One of your best twists yet, Ivy!
    The burnt-orange man in the summer sweater is fantastic! And 'good luck, girly' - what a riot!

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  4. Loved the,"surgically enhanced starlet"Lol!Wonderfully riveting piece-great detailing and I loved the end Ivy ;-)

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  5. Love the twist, I never had the idea it was coming. Great story !

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  6. Yes, love the twist at the end. This has a "girl-lit" feel to it that is so different from your normal writing (which I love). But I do like to indulge in some girl-lit every now and then.

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  7. Oh, Ivy! You sucked me right. I like this character's rough around the edges brashness and crisp speech! A departure from hotness (which I love). This was a fun ride!!!

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  8. This whole piece is great but this line is over the top awesome: The burnt-orange man in the summer sweater... Loved it, Ivy.

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  9. I got wrapped up in this story. I didn't see the twist at the end - nicely done. I don't know if I could be employed by the disappearing father... too much resentment. But if she can do it, good for her!

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  10. Ivy!!! You rock.
    Plus I love the twist, love that it's her dad and what that means, like you can go back home sometimes but only if it's on your own terms.

    Keep writing this story, it's interesting, cool and we'll written.

    Xo

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  11. Brilliantly played! Love the set up, love the twist. And I would love to see where this goes next. :)

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  12. Did not expect that ending, but it was wonderful! Loved the "shitstain" insult. I will use that some day.

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