Workplace Differences

Greg's scared of what his dad would think if he found out about his infatuation with Ricci, a boy who works as a mail man for his dad's company. Can he keep his secret to himself or will it destroy him trying to do so

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Stewart actually had work to do the next day so I left him to it and went to go talk to Sarah. I perched on top of her desk and told her how my dad was scared of her which made her cackle. I mean, head thrown back, snorting, uncontrollably loud laughing. 

"Everyone in this office treads eggshells around him because they're terrified of him and he's scared of me? Really?" I nodded and she continued laughing, banging her hand against the desk. 

"Woah, what's all this about?" Ricci stopped his cart beside us, leaning on the handles and grinning at Sarah who wiped her tears from laughing so hard. "I could here you from the elevator, Sarah."

"Sorry, Gabriele, Greg was just telling me about how his dad is scared of me, it's priceless," She said, trying to stop herself from laughing again.

"Your dad?" He asked, furrowing his eyebrows. I realised then that Stewart never told him that I was the boss' son and this was not going to be the best news for him. Sarah also realised this and had stopped laughing, looking at me and raising her eyebrows.

"Uh, yeah, Chris, the boss," I mumbled quickly and his eyes widened.

"Right, so I probably shouldn't be talking to you then, my bad," He muttered, the grin had disappeared from his face and I felt absolutely awful.

"No, Ricci, I can talk to you he doesn't have to know."

"He'll find out and then he'll fire me," He said, picking up a few envelopes and putting them on Sarah's desk. "He can't legally fire me for being gay but he'll make up some bullshit if I talk to his son, you know he will, I'm sorry." Before I could say anything else he had left and Sarah put her hand on top of mine.

"I wish Chris wasn't such a cunt," She thought aloud and I nodded.

"Me too."

"Sarah, were you holding out on me the whole time? Who knew you were into the young ones?" Stewart said, looking at Sarah's hand on mine that she took away as soon as he spoke.

"I'm a comforting, maternal figure and I told you I'm married to my work and relationships just aren't for me," She said, sighing and opening one of the letters Ricci dropped off.

"Why are you comforting Gregory?"

"Gabriele doesn't want to be caught by the boss talking to him, he's wise, Chris is not."

"He has a fair point, kid," Stewart said and I stood up from the desk. "If Chris caught him that's the end of his job and he's been working here for a while, it pays well."

"I know, he's just nice and my dad's being a massive prick about this. What does his sexuality have to do with anything?" I said, I was frustrated at my dad's illogical views. I always had been but he would never listen to me if I tried to change his mind about it.

"Unfortunately there's nothing to do about it but you can join us for drinks after work, Ricci's gonna be there and your dad doesn't get off work until late so he will never know," Stewart offered and I thought about it for a second. If dad did find out he couldn't get mad at Ricci because he never knew that I was going to be there. Stewart could pass it off as a friendly gathering and he forgot that Ricci was even going to be there. It was fool-proof in my eyes.

 

"Are you sure you won't come with us, Sarah?" Stewart asked, he'd apparently been pleading her to join the office for drinks for the 8 years that he'd been working there and she had always refused. Her dedication to her work was unreal.

"I'm positive. Have fun without me," She said, smiling. "Now fuck off, I've got work to do." We did what she said and headed to the pub a couple of minutes away from the office. When we arrived basically everyone was there already and Stewart went straight for the bar to get some beers for us. I saw Ricci sitting at a table with a few other people, laughing and seemingly having a great time. As soon as I got my beer I told Stewart I was going to talk to Ricci. I went over and sat in the spare seat opposite him and as soon as he saw me his face dropped.

"I did tell you that Chris would fire me if I talked to you, right?" He asked and I nodded. "So, you're here because?"

"I guess I'm just an anarchist," I said and he laughed.

"That's easy for you to say it's not your ass on the line." 

"He won't find out, don't worry," I reassured him but he still seemed skeptical. The two other guys who were sitting with Ricci went over to the bar to get drinks while I stayed with him. He took a sip of his drink, insisting on not looking at me or even acknowledging my existence for a minute. "Come on, dude, he's working right now he'll never know."

"He'll find out, he always does," He replied, sighing. "Look, you're just young and naive so you don't get it."

"I'm 20," I said, frowning at his patronising tone.

"I'm 25, that might not seem like a big gap but in the real world it's massive," He said, rolling up the sleeves of his shirt. "And you don't have the experience of being a gay man in the real world."

"If I don't get it, teach me." He laughed at this for some reason and it made me feel so stupid and almost like a child.

"That's easier said than done," He explained. "You need to actually go through the experiences if you want to understand them and with you being privileged and having everything you need handed to you on a silver plate it's hard for you to ever understand. I mean, you're only working at the office because your dad's the boss, you couldn't get a job on your own. I had to work my ass off to get where I am and it isn't even close to where I want to be." He was right. I didn't want to admit it but everything coming out of his mouth was 100% accurate. "Don't cause trouble for me, you have Sarah to talk to or something, okay? You don't need to talk to me." He downed the rest of his beer and got up. I watched him leave and put some money down for his drink before actually exiting the pub. I couldn't let my dad control everything that was going on in mine and everyone else's life. It wasn't fair that he would do this. I was the only one who could stand up to him.

I almost ran out of the pub after Ricci. I saw him leaning on what I assumed was his car and smoking a cigarette. I didn't take him as a smoker. I walked over to him and cleared my throat to get his attention which almost scared him enough to drop his cigarette.

"Jesus Christ, don't do that!" He exclaimed, taking the cigarette out of his mouth and holding it between his forefinger and thumb. "What do you want, Greg?"

"You got a lighter?" I asked, getting out my own pack of cigarettes to which he rolled his eyes.

"I didn't take you as a smoker, you know, being 20 and all. I don't really want to enable you into digging yourself an early grave."

"That's hypocritical of you," I said, leaning against his car next to him and putting a cigarette between my lips.

"I've been smoking since I was 16, it's a bit late for me," He muttered.

"I've been smoking since I was 13," I said and he glanced up at me, expecting an explanation I assumed. "I was friends with a lot of older kids and peer pressure's a bitch. It was either smoke or don't have friends and in my infantile mind having friends was more important than my health."

"I don't know how Chris lets you get away with that." I chuckled to myself.

"He doesn't know, that's the one thing I've kept private from him, well not one thing but one of the only things," I said, thinking about the feelings for guys I've kept to myself. 

"Here," He said, sparking up his lighter and lighting my cigarette for me. "Do you know why your dad hates gay people?" I shook my head.

"I wish I knew," I said, inhaling the smoke and holding it in my lungs before blowing it back out. "He has as long as I remember, he tried teaching me to hate them to but me and Lucy grew up in a more accepting area than he did so it was near impossible to be homophobic."

"Lucy?"

"My younger sister," I answered and he nodded. "I always hoped that he'd grow out of it and change but he never has and I don't know if he ever will." Ricci dropped his cigarette and stomped it out, shoving his hands into the pockets of his trousers.

"I would invite you back to mine but I'm not trying to fuck you and your dad would not approve," Ricci said, causing me to laugh.

"You only invite guys back if you want to fuck them? Do you not have friends that are guys?"

"Yeah but I don't invite them back with me, if they're gonna see my trashy place I need something in return," He said, grinning. I shook my head at him, smiling.

"Do you not have a boyfriend or something?" He shrugged.

"I don't have time for a relationship," He replied, opening his car door. "Most guys just wanna fuck anyway. They probably heard about my massive penis." I somehow doubted that was the case but chuckled anyway as Ricci got into his car and waved goodbye. Even if it was just for a moment I was happy to have spoken with him; it was liberating.

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