“Welcome home, baby!” My mom said, welcoming me into her house after I had been gone for months at the X Factor.
“Thanks mom.” I said, beginning to take my hoodie off. She took it from me and put it in the front closet then followed me to the living room.
“Oh, this came for you.” I looked confused seeing as all my mail had been forwarded to me at the X Factor location up until the day me and the guys were voted off; though we had still been signed by Simon, we still had gotten voted off and had to go home. She handed me a simple letter that had our address printed on it.
“When did this come?”
“Maybe about a month ago. I knew it wasn’t fan mail so I left it here for you.”
“How do you know?” My mom just smiled at me and I looked down at the letter, slowly opening it.
Hello. I’m not sure you remember me, but years ago we were pen pals. I think your teacher was Miss. Smith and mine was Miss. Coly. My mom had just dug up these old boxes when I moved and I got curious and decided to go through them and found our letters back and forth to each other.
I know this is way out of the blue but I was just curious to see how you were doing.
Hope you have a nice day.
I was in shock, reading the letter. I remembered those letters quite well actually. They crossed my mind every now and again but I never actually thought I would hear from Bethany again.
“This has been here a month and you didn’t think to tell me?” I asked, looking up.
“I knew you would remember.” My mom smiled at me and shrugged. “Are you going to write her back?”
“Yeah…” I said after a short pause. “I definitely will.”
That evening after dinner was over and I had unpacked some, I sat down at the desk in my room and started thinking about what to respond with.
I’m sorry I haven’t answered sooner. I’ve been gone on vacation. I do remember you actually, quite well. I too think about the letters from time to time. I never actually thought I would hear from you again but it was nice to hear from you so please don’t get the wrong idea.
I am doing very well thank you. I hope you too are doing well.
I was sitting in my office, trying not to kill someone. I was sitting on the phone trying to make appointments, reschedule appointments, cancel appointments completely; anything you can imagine I was doing. I had already downed my fifth cup of coffee and it wasn’t even noon yet. I was just ready to go home.
“You look happy as hell.” I looked up and saw Jo standing in my doorway. I smiled at her and waved her in. She handed me another cup of coffee and I smiled gratefully at her.
“You are literally the fucking best.” I said, sighing.
“It’s my job; I’m your assistant.” Jo said, smirking.
“I don’t get that. I didn’t know assistants had assistants.” I said, confused.
“I don’t know; it’s Anastasia; she can do whatever she wants. She pays us both so who can complain?” I nodded in agreement and chugged half of the coffee in one sitting.
“Be a doll and make copies of these for me?” I asked, handing her a stack of papers. Jo nodded, took them, and walked off to the copy room to make the copies.
When work finally ended for the day; and by day, I mean 8o’clock at night, I took a cab home in peace. I did my daily routine of picking up my pack of smokes at the deli right down the street from me, then smoke one, then go inside and check my mail, go up to my room, and make some form of microwavable dinner while going through all my stupid fucking bills.
I followed that exact routine, and after my Stouffers family sized mac n. cheese was ready for me and only me might I add in, I sat at the bar counter and started shifting through my mail.
“Bills…bills…more fucking bills; surprise, bills…wait…that wasn’t a bill.” I said reaching for it again. Of course I was talking to myself, I thought, rolling my eyes. I scanned over it and my eyes widened when I realized it was from Harry. He had finally answered; it only took him a month. When I flipped it over, that’s when I noticed the priority mail sticker on the back, making me smirk. I tore it open and slowly read it. I smiled when I finished reading it then grabbed another piece of paper and a pen.
Wow, at this point I wasn’t even expecting a response from you but I hope you had a wonderful vacation; I sure as hell could go for one right about now.
But I mean…I would love to continue talking if that is okay with you. However, if you do still want to, I have a few conditions.
I guess if you want to know the conditions, you can send me a letter back. Oh and I also liked the priority mail sticker that was on the back. (:
I smiled, put the letter in an envelope, wrote the addresses, stamped it, and put it by the table by my front door where I leave my keys hanging so I would remember to grab it tomorrow to send it off to England in the morning.
The next day at work, I was sitting next to Anastasia at a conference she was holding for the workers that was basically her number ones; her go-to people in the company. I was taking down all the notes, as were everyone else since we all knew we were going to need this information at one point or another.
“On a closing note, I have a few new assistant designers coming in; Bethany, I need you to interview them and if they pass, schedule them interviews with me. I nodded, jotting that down. Okay, everyone in dismissed. She walked out while the rest of us gathered out binders and notebooks to head back to work.
“What do you want for lunch?” Jo asked me as we walked out.
“Can you just grab me a salad and a coffee from the lunch room downstairs?” Jo nodded and I thanked her as she walked away.
“How are you holding up?” George asked me, walking next to me since we were office neighbors; well technically. He had a cubicle right outside my office.
“Pretty good…” I sighed.
“I don’t know; we’re pretty impressed with you.” Naomi said, joining us.
“She hasn’t had an assistant last longer than a week until you. And you actually haven’t fucked up yet.” George said.
“Well don’t jinx it; knock on wood.” I said, half smiling, already drained for the day.
“I think you’ll be just fine.” George said, Naomi nodding in agreement.
“You’re liked around here and I don’t think that will change.” Naomi said. I smiled weakly. As I neared my office, I said I would see them later and that I had work to do. I walked into my office, closing the door, and burying my face into my hands for a couple seconds before looking back up and turning back to my computer to continue working.
I was happy my co-workers like me and thought highly of me, which only made me want to do better or do more for the company. Our staff list was extensive but George and Naomi being right outside my office along with Jo, made it so I saw them the most. George was our Brand Representative and Naomi was the editors’ assistant for everything published about the company. Basically George handles all the potential buyers of every new fashion line that comes out for our company and Naomi does the same thing as the editor but most of the time the editor will change everything she has written or just straight throw it out since it isn’t A1 yet. She isn’t high enough up to make an actual article about the company or Anastasia yet.
A few minutes later, Jo walked in with me lunch and I excused her so she could go on her half hour lunch while I worked through mine, barely touching my salad yet downing my coffee, like any other day.
“You seem oddly cheery today.” Liam said when we all met back in England to meet with Simon about our contract. It was verbally discussed but never in an actual meeting which is what we had to do to make it official.
“Yeah, I guess I do.” I said, still smiling and not even bothering to hide it.
“Why?” Louis asked.
“I recently got in touch with someone I talked to a long time ago.”
“It’s a girl.” Zayn said without even waiting for a pause.
“But I don’t even know her.” I said. They all looked at me, confused. “We were pen pals years back. She lives in America. When we went home from the X Factor, my mom had a letter from her.”
“She didn’t just forward it to you?” Niall asked. I shook my head and shrugged.
“She figured I would be too busy to answer which was completely accurate.” They guys all nodded in agreement.
“So what’s she look like?” Louis asked.
“I don’t know. That’s the thing; I only know her first name.”
“She could be a serial killer, mate.” Niall said, obviously joking.
“Nice one.” I said, shaking my head. “But no; her name is pretty so I have no reason to believe she’s hideous looking.”
“Wait, do you actually like this girl?” Zayn asked.
“No, but it was nice hearing from her again. It brought back childhood memories and how much I loved all of them.”
“That’s valid enough.” Liam said. We all laughed and that’s when Simon came in with a few of his staff members so we could appropriately discuss the contract we were about to sign.
After the meeting was over, I was so mind fucked about what was happening today that I didn’t know how I was going to function. Within a few weeks, we all had to move to London so we would be right here for work, which meant leaving home. I was hoping I got a letter from Bethany before than so I would be able to tell her about my address change but that was wishful thinking. I mean, I know she moved since her return address was now New York City instead of New Jersey, but that was simple; she wrote me back first and not the other way around.
I knew telling my mom though was going to break her heart. She just got me back and now I was leaving again. So the train trip home was a slightly depressing one for this little fact here.
“Hey mom!” I called, walking inside.
“There’s my favorite son!”
“Mom, I’m your only son.” I said, smiling.
“Yeah, and Gemma is my only daughter, but I can still have a favorite daughter and son.”
“Alright then mom.” My mom was nothing but smiles and practically dragged me into the living room.
“So how did the meeting go?!”
“Really well however…” My mom got a look of concern on her face and I suddenly felt bad. “Within a couple weeks, Simon is moving all us boys out to London so we can be closer to work.”
“What…?” My mom finally whispered after a pause.
“I know mom, I’m sorry but…it’s work. I’ll still call you every day though!” My mom gave me a sad smile and touched my arm.
“I expected it darling. I’m sad that you’re leaving after I just got you back but I want you to know that I am so beyond proud of you.” I smiled and hugged my mom tightly.
“Oh, by the way, did I happen to get a letter today?” My mom’s smile seemed to brighten up and she laughed.
“No not yet baby. You literally sent that letter a couple days ago. Give her some time to respond.” I nodded, feeling a little upset but I kind of expected that answer. It’s not like she lived down the street; she lived across the world. “How about we go food shopping to get your mind off it?” I smiled and nodded.