“Anastasia?” I said as I knocked on her half open door.
“Come in Bethany.” I opened the door and walked up to her desk. “What can I help you with? What did you fuck up?”
“Uh, nothing ma’am.” She stopped typing and looked at me.
“Then what do you want?”
“I had an idea for the company.”
“I’m all ears. This better be good if you’re interrupting me though.” I nodded and handed her some papers.
“No one has done this yet and I thought it was a really good idea.” She took the papers from me and started shuffling through them. “I thought to give our company some really good publicity since the fashion industry is so high-strung and highly looked down on by a majority of the public since we’re supposedly all stuck up, that we take the time and give back to the needy. No major fashion company has voluntarily given up part of their fashion line to the homeless and needy and I feel like it would give us some very good publicity.”
“So what you’re telling me is that you want to basically make a fashion line and just give it away?” I nodded, biting my lip. I knew it was a long shot but I figured it would be a good idea for good publicity for the company. “You want to take time out of everyone’s day to basically do something for free just for publicity?”
“If you look at the statistics I handed you, which shows about how much more we would make for showing that we were doing something good without pay for it.” Anastasia went through the papers again and stared at the one with all the statistics on it. She put the papers down, folded her hands and nodded.
“Okay; you’re dismissed.” I nodded, a little confused and walked out and back to my office.
“What was that about?” Alison asked me as I walked out of Anastasia’s office. Alison was the Advertising Coordinator of the company and if this went through, she would have a lot of work to do.
“I had an idea that I pitched to Anastasia.” Alison’s eyes went wide and she slowed down. “What?” I asked her.
“No one pitch’s ideas to Anastasia…every idea has to be hers. No one told you that? The last person to pitch an idea got fired.” I shrugged and turned to look at her.
“Then I’ll be out of a job soon if that’s the case.” I shrugged it off, too tired to deal with it and continued back to my office. As soon as I sat down in my chair, the intercom over the whole office buzzed.
“Attention everyone in stage one; there will be a conference meeting in ten minutes. Everyone please make your way to thee conference room.” I sighed, grabbing my notes binders and made my way to the conference room.
After exactly 10 minutes, Anastasia walked in, papers in hand. We all sat there in silence, wondering what this was all about.
“Alright; thank you everyone for dropping what you were doing for this. I had Bethany come into my office today with a pitch for the company. Will someone tell Bethany what happens when you pitch an idea?”
“You get fired…” Alison said. Anastasia nodded.
“Yeah, but Bethany is the exception.” Everyone’s eyes went wide, including mine. “Bethany had a wonderful pitch today and I’d like her to share it with everyone. Bethany.” Anastasia motioned for me to come stand in the front so I could give my pitch. I stood up and slowly made my way to the front of the room.
“Okay; uh my pitch was that we create a line that we strictly gave away; just for good publicity for the company. Fashion companies can be strongly looked down upon by middle class and lower class people for the simple fact that they were insanely expensive and for the fact that they see us all as stuck up. My idea is strictly for people like this; I want to have this line created and simply given away to people in need; sent to Africa, the homeless, orphanages all around the world- for children, teenagers, adults. This will give our company good publicity and we will do it mainly under the radar. We will make it slightly known but not enough to make it seem like we are calling attention to ourselves.”
“So basically we’re creating a line and giving it away with the lowest amount of publicity possible?” Peter, the Junior Merchandiser of our company asked. Anastasia and I both nodded. Everyone began buzzing with excitement and ideas.
“Okay, so Bethany will be heading up this project. I give her full control over it. She will appoint everyone into where she wants them to be and I expect deadlines to be met. I would like this done within three months.” Anastasia said. “That is the only rule I will lay down. And Bethany…this is your test. If your statistics are very off, you’re fired.” Anastasia added in before dismissing everyone. I nodded, suddenly nervous. I knew I was her fashion assistant, but I didn’t think she would put me in full charge of this. We all gathered our notebooks and walked out, asking me questions. I told them all to let me work out the full details tonight and I would get it all to them by tomorrow morning. They all nodded and dispersed at that point to go back to their daily work. Now all I had to do was pick my team, get a line created, given away, and getting it all done in three months; a piece of cake, right?
When I got home that night after I finished all my work for the day, I went directly to the bar down the street from my house with Jo since she was my closest friend here in the city.
“So what are you going to do?” Jo asked as we ordered our first beers.
“That’s the thing; I didn’t plan anything past the idea. I didn’t think she would actually put me in charge of the project. I figured she would do everything herself since it was her company and not mine. I am still like…mind fucked that she’s putting an assistant in charge of a huge ass project like this with a three month deadline.”
“Did you expect much of anything else? It’s Anastasia. She’s crazy sometimes. But this is all you have to do to make yourself build in the company. That could work really well for you if you think about it. If you keep coming up with all these ideas for us…you could be huge!”
“Yeah, I guess so.”
“You could become a partner in the company if you prove yourself enough. You know she’s been looking for a partner for a long time now.”
“Why? She’s making billions a year for this company. Why would she want to split that in half?”
“Who knows? She has to have her reasons though. But imagine if you keep this up? You could be the partner!”
“Wouldn’t it make sense to make someone who’s been there a while her partner?”
“Yeah, but…she wants someone she knows who can run the company well and that she can trust. How many people do you honestly think she trusts in this company?”
“You hear people talk; no one can pitch a single idea unless they want to lose their job, no one can talk out of line or they lose their job; you’re the first exception! She has to see something in you if she’s putting you in charge of this!”
“I see your point.” I said, finishing off my beer and getting another one.
“All you have to do is nail this account and god only knows what she’ll put you in charge of after this! If you can prove yourself right and pull it off; that’s gold right there.”
“Why are you so excited for me?” I asked, smirking at her. Jo shrugged as she finished her beer, ordering another.
“Because the higher you go up in the company, the more money you make, the bigger paychecks I get because you love me and will raise my salary.” Jo said, smiling. I started laughing, almost spitting beer out as I did. Jo started laughing at this point too.
“I can’t believe how bluntly honest that was.” I said when I was finally able to stop laughing.
“But you wouldn’t fire your best friend and assistant, would you?”
“Of course not; unless you seriously fucked me over.”
“I wouldn’t do that to you.” Jo said smiling. “I need a friend and a job…you’re both.” This made me laugh all over again. For the next hour or so we stayed at the bar, drinking and laughing together. But around midnight, I called it quits and headed home since I had a long ass night ahead of me; working out all the damn kinks in this project.
I had received Bethany’s letter about two days before I officially moved into London; thank god. I could tell her my new address so we wouldn’t lose contact again. I wrote her back and put it in the mail immediately and put it through priority mailing again. If she couldn’t afford to, I knew I could so the faster it got to her, at least I would get the response somewhat faster.
After the next couple days, I had finally moved all my stuff to the new house in London. It was a giant five bedroom place so we each got our own privacy when we actually had down time since according to Simon, the first few months would be hell. And I definitely did not doubt him on that.
“Have you heard from this American girl recently?” Niall asked me on day on our way to the recording studio to meet up with Simon.
“I did about a week ago. I already wrote her back.”
“Obviously telling her your new address/” Zayn said, smirking.
“Of course!” I said, ignoring the sass in his voice.
“What do you think Simon has us doing today?” Liam asked, changing the subject.
“Who the hell knows?” Louis said, shrugging. “For all we know, he could have us murdering people; he is Simon after all.”
“That’s…really fucked up Lou.” Liam said, eyes going wide.
“I’m just saying.” Louis said, shrugging.
“Exactly how much sleep did you get last night?” I asked him, concerned.
“None; I was up skyping with Eleanor all night.”
“That would explain where all these weird comments are coming from.” Niall said. “And to think everyone thought I was the weird one.”
“You are.” Liam and Zayn said, making us all laugh as we pulled up at the recording studio.
“CAN SOMEONE PLEASE FUCKING PUT A BELT ON THIS DAMN DRESS?!” I screamed. One of the interviewees rushed over and tried fixing the dress. After Anastasia put me in charge of this giant project, I figured a good test along with the interview for the assistant fashion designers was this; and Anastasia agreed- another one of my good pitches. “YOU GUYS ARE THE DESIGNERS, NOT ME, SOMEONE SHOULD’VE PICKED UP ON THE FACT THAT THE DRESS LOOKED LIKE SHIT WITHOUT THE FUCKING BELT!” It was only a week into the project and I was already stressed as hell. Doing my normal, daily, fashion assistant work on top of this project was killer but…it had to be done if I wanted to keep my job. However, I didn’t mind all the work. It kept me distracted from everything outside of the office that only stressed me out more; like the bills pouring in and all the crap I had going on back in Jersey with my family. Though I’ll get into that later.
After another four hours of project stress, I sent all the fashion designer interviewees home and focused on more of the distribution aspects and press aspects of the project; still on top of everything else that had to be done.
I got home around eleven that night after everything was finally done with. I picked up my mail and sorted through it, realizing I had a letter from Harry. I smiled and ripped it open as I sat down in my kitchen while I waited for my leftover lasagna to hear up in the microwave.
I would love to continue talking. Though before I say anything further so I don’t break any of the conditions, please tell me what they are.
I smiled at his letter; short and simple but it had made my day. I quickly wrote him back so I had it done and decided to start priority mailing them since he spent the extra few dollars to do so. I ate my dinner, did a little more work on the project at work, and then went straight to bed.