Truth Can Stare
Truth Can Stare
He watched her from across the room. It had been two weeks since
she’d arrived and she hadn’t spoken to one person. He felt bad for
her, she didn’t seem to take to new people easily, and in a large group
like they were all in, he knew she’d have a hard time adjusting.
‘I forget why she’s here,’ he thought. ‘Duh, me, management,’ he
reminded himself. He sighed as he leaned back against the pole behind
him and crossed his arms. Even though he loved what he did and all
the attention he received, he wished that he got it from someone like her,
in a more personal way. She was beautiful, in his opinion.
Long, chocolate brown hair, bright hazel eyes, smooth peaches and cream
complexion, and she was just under his height, barely even an inch.
Her baggy jeans hung on her hips when she walked, providing him with what
he considered ‘the perfect scenery’, and he’d discovered over the last
two weeks that her shirts were all plain, dark colors, either long sleeved
or short sleeved T-shirts. Her hair was always either left down or
pulled back into a braid and reached halfway down her back. He felt
that she was beautiful, a rare find.
‘If only I could talk to her.’
She sighed, double clicking on the icon on the computer screen in front
of her. Office work, paper work, computer work, it was all the same,
day in and day out. No matter what she wanted to do, what she felt
like doing, her work came first and foremost. And it didn’t help
that, as part of her job, she had to go on tour with a bunch of people
she’d never even seen before in her entire life.
‘Well, I have, but that’s not the point, I don’t know them personally,
and from what I’ve gathered, I'm not allowed to,’ she corrected herself
mentally, leaning back against her seat and stretching her arms out in
front of her. She flexed her wrists before starting to type up a
report that had been handed to her.
‘Damn Carpel-Tunnel’s,’ she thought, flexing her wrists again. She
looked at the paper on the table and typed it up quickly, stopping a few
times to decipher the handwriting, as it looked horrible.
‘Chicken scratch,’ she thought to herself, going back to typing.
She finished the two-page report in fifteen minutes and made a copy, sending
it via e-mail to the appropriate person.
‘Can I get away from this computer yet?’ She thought as she looked
around her for her boss. She was looking for Denise, she couldn’t
quite recall her last name, she was the person she was told to report to
at the end of the day with all her work and such. She sighed again
as she couldn’t spot the woman and looked back at her computer.
‘I never thought I’d get sick of computers, but I believe I am,’ she said
to herself as she minimized the window and called up another, going to
check her own e-mail.
"Junk, junk, good letter, junk, advertisement, junk, and even more junk,"
she murmured as she scrolled down. She erased the junk and advertisements,
then went to open the letter from a colleague of hers when another paper
was slapped down next to her.
"Type that up, Evie, I need it sent by five," Denise called as she hurried
away, answering her cell phone.
Evie sighed and picked up the paper, glancing over the notes. "Yes,
ma’am," she said to no one. She exited out of her mail and called
back up the other window, typing up the paper of notes as she glanced at
‘Great, this time, I got five minutes to type up a page!’ She thought
to herself sarcastically as she typed as fast as possible. She sent
the finished product to the address indicated at the top of the page, just
as the clock struck five.
"That’s it, I'm taking a break," she thought aloud as she pushed her folding
chair back and closed her laptop. She stretched up, insecurely pulling
down the tail of her shirt as she let her arms down, and walked away from
the table. She’d been working on that damn site and its information
for the last two weeks, she was sick of looking at it. As a professional
web designer and computer technician, you’d think she liked her job, correct?
‘Not anymore,’ she thought as she grabbed a bottle of water from the cooler.
She opened it and sipped it slowly. ‘I liked my job in the beginning
because it took me about ten minutes to do each job, and I could do them
at my own pace, with the window of about two weeks. But not this
one, oh no, this one I had to come on location instead of getting everything
faxed, and I had to turn down all those other jobs. Plus, no one
talks to me but Denise. Yeah, she’s nice, but the only thing I know
about her is that she has nice handwriting that’s sometimes a little hard
to read. Yeah, something crucial about someone you must know.’
Evie walked slowly down the hall of the office, what most called ‘the headquarters’,
because, basically, that was what it was. She didn’t even know what
the object was anymore, she couldn’t remember.
"Sorry!" Someone called as they bumped into her, then ran down the
hall. Evie looked after the man and swallowed hard.
"Its ok," she whispered. She continued her slow walk and ended up
at the main entrance, leaning against the doors.
"You look a little on the sad side."
Evie turned to the voice and smiled at him, looking down to the floor and
blushing lightly. "Its nothing, I’m just tired."
"Not home sick?" He asked as he advanced towards her, standing next
to her at the large window.
Evie shook her head and looked outside at the setting sun. "Not really,
I may live a few hundred miles away, but it doesn’t make me homesick being
"I don’t have much to miss there, just my computer and stereo, that’s all
I really have."
"No family? No pets?"
"Nope and nope. My parents died a few years ago, I’m an only child,
and I never had any pets, I would forget to take care of them, I’m so busy."
"I’m sorry. About your parents, I mean," he said, correcting himself
Evie shook her head. "Don’t worry about it, they were both very sick
with cancer and heart problems. I guess you could say that they’re
happier now because they aren’t in anymore pain."
"Oh," he said softly. He looked back at her. "I’m sorry, I
just realized I never introduced myself, name’s Kevin."
Evie smiled and shook his outstretched hand. "I’m Evie."
"That’s a beautiful name, Evie; nice to meet you. Might I ask, though,
seeming as that I don’t recall ever seeing you here before, what area do
you work in?" He asked.
"I’m the one doing the web page design for the…" the project name escaped
her. "Umm, damn, you know, sitting at a computer so long really wears
on your brain, the project completely slipped my mind," she said apologetically.
"It’s all right, I think I know. Since you’re doing web page design,
that means that Denise must’ve called you in for the Fun Club Page," he
Evie snapped her fingers. "That’s it! The FFCP," she said,
telling him the nickname she’d given it.
Kevin laughed. "Yes, the FFCP. Tell me, Evie, when did you
"About two weeks ago. They called me in from my New York office and
said that if I wanted this job, I’d have to turn down the others and get
down here as fast as I could. So, I packed my bags and got down here
within the next twenty-four hours, which is pretty amazing considering
I did not want to do this. It frustrated me that I had to come all
this way for a page when usually I’m faxed and e-mailed all the information
and then take my leisurely time with it. But no, Madam Denise said
I had to get down here in Florida and work on it here. Needless to
say, I wasn’t all that happy about it, and right now, I’m just tired of
staring at a computer screen." Evie took a deep breath and laughed
when she noticed Kevin’s slightly dazed expression. "I’m sorry, I
talk too much once someone starts me on something," she said quietly.
"No, don’t apologize, it’s not your fault. I just find it amazing
that Denise had you come all the way here from New York to work on that
page. She was going to have someone else work on it, but I guess
he’s just going to be fine-tuning the final product."
"More or less. All I know is that I’ll be done by next week and then
I can go back home and be able to work in my pajamas again," Evie said
frankly, another smile sneaking on her face. Kevin laughed and the
two got involved in another conversation when someone came up behind them,
"Got you!" A short, blonde haired man said, beaming a bright smile.
"Sheesh, Bri, give me a heart attack, why don’t you?" Kevin said
"Ok, gimme a sec," the man replied, backing up and getting ready to run
"Oh, no, I was just kidding," Kevin said, darting forward and holding the
"So was I, sheesh, you need to lighten up," the man said, relaxing his
position. "Hi, my name’s Brian," he said, holding his hand out to
a slightly shocked Evie.
"That’s Evie, Bri, she’d working on the fan page," Kevin said, gesturing
to her silent form.
"I-I’m sorry, you just scared me a little," Evie said, catching herself
and shaking Brian’s out-stretched hand. The three started talking
and were interrupted a few minutes later by the arrival of two more people.
"FOOD’S HERE!" The two of them yelled as they opened the doors.
Evie covered her ears as a roar of excitement rang through the hallways
and the two guys ran around, each carrying two large bags of steaming food
and two pizza boxes.
"Come on, Evie, dinner’s here," Kevin said, holding his hand out to her.
Evie took it carefully and struggled to keep up with him as he hurried
down the hall, following the Puerto Rican guy and the tall blonde who’d
just arrived with the food.
"Great, food, thanks so much, Frack, I was dying," Brian said as he grabbed
one of the pizza boxes and flipped it open, revealing extra cheesy pizza.
"Oh, yes," he said as he picked up a slice and bit into it.
Evie backed away as a bunch of people stormed the table. "Come on,
Evie, grab some before its gone," Kevin said, pulling her towards the table.
Evie shook her head. "No, that’s ok, I’m not hungry," she said, walking
away quickly before he could protest. She hurried back to her cubicle
and sat down, leaning forward and putting her head in her hands.
She took a deep breath and opened her laptop, starting up the web page
to work on it.
"Is this seat taken?"
Evie looked up as she still typed a mile a minute, then froze. His
rugged appearance on the outside gave him the look of a bad guy, but she
knew he wasn’t. Arms covered with tattoos, pierced ears, and baggy
clothes completed the look with a goatee and perfectly sculpted moustache.
Evie had to admit that he was incredibly attractive, but she never would
aloud. She knew who he was.
He was Denise’s son, AJ.
"Uh, not since yesterday," Evie finally said, realizing that she’d left
him without an answer. She saw him smile at her through his red tinted
sunglasses as he pulled out the chair next to her and sat down, setting
his plate of pizza in front of him.
"Mind if I eat? I’m kinda hungry, and I grabbed these pieces before
Rodney could," he said, gesturing to his plate and referring to one of
the other workers there.
"No, go right ahead," Evie said, looking back at her computer screen, embarrassed
as she realized she’d made a bunch of mistakes on the report she was typing.
"What’cha writin’?" AJ asked, leaning over her shoulder.
"Stuff for the web page."
"So you’re the person my mom called in?"
"The one and only," Evie said as she fixed everything, and then went to
the bottom of the page and started writing more html.
"How come you’re so quiet?" He asked a few moments later as he finished
the first slice of pizza.
"Because not very many people want to talk to the computer nerd," she said
frankly. She clicked on the save button and inhaled deeply, smelling
the wonderful pizza. ‘Can’t eat it, Evie, you lived on pizza for
a month, you don’t need anymore,’ she reminded herself, typing again.
"Sure you don’t want some? Its not like I can’t spare the other piece,"
AJ offered, pushing the plate towards her.
Evie shook her head and pushed the plate away. "No, that’s all right,
really, I'm not hungry," she said quickly. ‘Yes I am, incredibly
hungry, and if you don’t get that pizza away from me, I'm gonna scream.’
"I don’t believe you."
"Because I can tell that, inside, you are craving this pizza," AJ said
quietly, leaning forward and smiling.
Evie shook her head, not looking at him. "No, I'm not."
"Yes you are."
"No I'm not."
"Yes you are."
"No I'm not! How would you know anyway?" Evie demanded.
She blushed as her stomach let out a low growl.
AJ laughed and tickled her stomach lightly. "That’s how I know."
Evie shied away from his hand and wrapped her arms around her stomach.
"Well, I am a little hungry."
"I’d think so, you haven’t moved from this computer all day!"
It was Evie’s turn to get information out of him. "How would you
AJ blushed crimson. "I saw you."
"From over there. I was watching you all day"
Evie looked away and felt her face get very warm, knowing it was turning
bright red. She never expected to hear those
words from AJ McLean of Backstreet Boys fame.
"Why would you be watching me? Are you saying that you were so bored
as to watch me?" She asked.
"No, I-I had p-plenty I could’ve d-done, b-but I chose to w-watch you,"
he stuttered out. Evie knew without looking that his face was still
quite red, just like hers.
"Why?" She finally whispered.
AJ mumbled something under his breath, something Evie couldn’t catch.
"Say that one more time, in English?" She implored, receiving a small
chuckle from him.
"I said that I think you’re beautiful," he said, his voice level slightly
higher. He leaned forward and Evie felt his breath on her neck.
"Say you’ll go to dinner with me tomorrow," he whispered in her ear.
"What?" Evie replied, unbelievingly. ‘This day keeps getting
more and more unusual and weird,’ she thought, shocked.
"Please? Just something small, a very quiet dinner, just you and
me," he whispered, gently taking her chin in his hands and turning it to
face him. She found herself looking into his deep brown eyes, his
sunglasses tossed on her desk, the bare truth staring her in the face.
"Yes, ok, tomorrow night," Evie agreed, her eyes never leaving his.
AJ smiled and softly kissed her lips, barely brushing his with hers.
He stood up and carried his empty plate with him back to the main area
with everyone else.
Evie simply smiled and turned back to the page.