Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Short Story: Evil Butterflies Part I

Ok so the plan today is to write a short story,  a section from each person's point of view. The prompt: Two people who go about their day to day with in each other's proximity really like each other but neither know how to approach the other. Write about the beginning of their new friendship/ relationship. 

So here is my first half to this little short I call:

Evil Butterflies

Grace

I walk into work and the butterflies surge into my stomach like a flock of birds descending on bread crumbs, they attack me in rolling waves of stomach cramps. They bit down on my sense of ease, clamping away any possibility of acting normal. I am a walking, talking, hollowed doll, a dumbed down version of the normality of myself. And there is only one explanation: Him.

Sitting in my cubicle I press the power button on my sleek black computer and listen as it hums to life. The 30” monitor blasts me with an array of lights and blinking colors, a wake up alert to my foggy morning mind. With the dimmed overheard lighting, and the screened desk light I use for random notes, I can see the pure color and crisp lines of every item displayed on the beautiful display before me. To put every emotion of my day in a nutshell, I love my job, and I can’t see myself living my work life in any other way. For the past four months I have become a necessary asset working on top selling films around the world, I provide my company with state of the art 3D replicas of static objects. Today, I am building a set of cutlery; three forks, spoons, knives, a serving spoon, and a coffee spoon. It would be grilling work. Perhaps it sounds funny, but I love the push and pull of vertices across my screen, the computer manipulation of 3D space. Last week I was building rocks, this week, silverware.

Like I said, I truly love my job. The lax hours of 10am-7pm with some overtime influx practically every week, the fresh bagels and gourmet coffee served every hour in the wide open employee kitchen, the grand lofted ceilings through the main workspace, the enclosed dark quarters of the 3D unit, the rich mahogany floors adorned with fuzzy rugs and floor mats. Work life was perfect, or at least it was until about a month ago.

His name, Damon. He started working here as an intern, but in the last week his skills were so amazing in within the texture department that he moved up insanely quick. Annoyingly, he was eons above me and I had been with the company much longer. Not to complain, I still love what I do, and hopefully soon I will be gifted the opportunity to work with the big wigs, the modeling of main characters and fun objects like cars, crazy effects, and the money shot of a castle. One day I know that will be a reality, but in the meantime, the main texture artist linked to my department and in constant view from my bay of desks, Damon.

His shortly cropped dirty blonde hair was visible almost the entire day, whether he was sitting at his desk in the opposite bay, or he was walking back and forth talking with the wide spread array of art directors, he was everywhere. It was actually amazing he ever got his work done, he walked around so much that it seemed he was never actually at his desk working, but he supplied the work at the end of every week. He was truly an amazing artist, and if I wasn’t so secure in my own position I would be totally jealous.

All normal reasons aside, I love being at work, and I love the atmosphere, but in the last month my inner girl has taken to noticing him more than necessary and it was beginning to annoy me. There was no reason to be so focused on someone that outside of polite hello’s and work conversation had never really paid all that much attention to me. But every time I saw the soft twinkle in his eyes, or when he shot me a quick smirk as he passed by I couldn’t help myself. Inwardly, I swooned every time. It was dumb, and a stupid girl reaction, and even though I knew I was above it, my traitorous girl body gave into his boyish charms.

 As my computer zoomed along to the speed of my constant clicking I heard his voice coming up from behind me growing stronger in tone with every step he took. My stomach clenched down even harder making it difficult to breathe, but outwardly I remained calm. If he didn’t know I was thinking about him, he most definitely would not be allowed to see his effect on me. As the clomping of feet approached my bay area I noticed he was talking to his boss about a shot that needed some extra work, and before I knew it both of the men were upon me.

“Grace, we need your help,” Damon said without any  morning introductions.

His voice was like a spark into my abdomen, immediately I forced my face to rearrange into the pleasant business appearance before turning around to face him. “What can I do for you?”

“We have a few models that we need sketched up really quick for the previs team, but they are loaded down with some stuff at the moment. If I sent over some references do you think you could model up a street scene for us by tonight’s meeting?”

My face went from looking into his bright blue eyes into the dark heavy green of my boss’ stare. Both appeared hopeful if not a little bit worried about my response. “Yeah, if you think I can put what I am working on now on hold for the day.”

“That doesn’t need to be finished until next week, this is more pressing. We need it done today,” Damon said assertively, but in the type of tone that set my heart beat racing to a faster tune. I tried to force myself to calm down, the man I couldn’t stop staring at every chance I got was actually offering me the opportunity I had been working so hard for. My focus varied between his words explaining the bulk of what was needed and the sparkle of blue in his eyes matching the slight boyish smirk I had recently grown so fond of.

“Sound good to you,” he finished with a earth shattering smile. The small chip in his front tooth just completed the picturesque perfection of his looks, it forced an uncomfortable flutter of inner wings to press against my stomach lining.

“Uh huh,” I forced out between a clamped smile.

“Perfect,” my boss finally spoke up. “Damon will check in with you after lunch and go over the finalities of the project tonight if there are any fixes.” The older man maybe 10 years my senior turned on a dime and walked away with a slight pop in his step.

“Thanks Grace, you just saved my ass,” Damon whispered softly before he perched on a small open spot on the edge of my desk space. His subtle woodsy accent floated through my senses and I wasbarely able to suppress the man behind to escape my lips.  He smelled so good,  right there iwanted to bury my fave in the side of his neck and breadth him in for eternity.  Wow,  that was a bit much,  even for me to think.  I tried to ignore the delicious smells invading my space but it was near  impossible.  My cheeks warmed with the realization that this was the first time he had actually sat so close to me,  I could see every fleck of gold  through his ice blue eyes, the effect caused my breathing to quicken.  Suddenly my desk seemed cluttered and unorganized but thankfully the blonde god sitting surprisingly close to my bubble of space didn’t seem to mind so much.

“What do you mean?” I asked thoughtfully, wondering how accepting a last minute glory job was doing anything for anyone else but myself.

“This project was supposed to be done yesterday, but Joey isn’t in today to finish it. So it’s me and you tonight working on it, you modeling and me adding some textures and lighting where  it’s needed for the previz. I hope you don’t mind, but I’m going to set up shop over here today so it’s easier for us to get this done.”

My tongue lodged in my throat, it was actually amazing I was capable of speech at all. “Yeah, sure. That would be much easier.”

“Awesome,” Damon said with another breathtaking smirk for he ran off to his desk to collect some needed essentials for the long day’s work ahead of them.

So now, not only was I handed a dream job for the day, I was also working side by side with the one man I had not been able to stop thinking about since I met him. I sipped on my delicious cup of morning java and allowed the smile to finally break across my features before turning back toward my monitor and the heaping pile of work before me.

Damon settled in to the desk directly next to mine that for the last four weeks had been empty, it was considered the roaming desk space. I never minded it so much, it allowed me the company of different people with every new project we received, but having Damon sit next to me was so far the best working partner I had the company of sharing so far. He quickly settled in placing his wide mouthed green coffee cup on the coaster provided and plugging in his own Wacom tablet to the side of the computer tower. Before long I realized I was staring at his progress instead of working and hurriedly refocused my attention on my screen in the effort to appear busy.

Appearing busy wasn’t exactly a problem, once I opened the project file I was immediately flooded with an uneasy sense of fear. There were 252 objects that I needed to build, place, and finalize with the head boss before I would be considered done with my day. Suddenly the daunting task seemed more like a critical challenge, and more than anything I loved the opportunity to complete a really good challenge.

Time flew by in flurry of quick keys, drop down menus, and rendering options, but just outside of 14 hours I had completed the project file of objects up for the first round of reviews. Leaning back in my chair I indulged in a long cat like stretch completely forgetting for the moment who was sitting right next to me.

“Don’t tell me you are done already,” Damon’s voice floated over to me with a mixture of sleepiness and focus weaved in his softer tone.

My eyes flicked over in his direction and I immediately dropped my arms back down to my lap. Shoot! I was wearing a tank top, and at the moment I wasn’t positive if I had shaved under my arms that morning. Did he see that? Or worse after the grueling day, did I smell so bad that he could smell the offensive stench?

“Um, I think the bulk of it is done,” I thought worriedly. What if I had gone to fast? He was about almost done himself with the texturing of the objects I had supplied, but still it wouldn’t be good if he thought my work wasn’t up to par.

“Well, from what I have seen everything looks great, I am almost done here myself.” He turned back to his monitor and hit the quick keys to save his work before turning back to my desk were my eyes had remained glued to the side of his face. “Hey so after the meeting I have in…” he glanced down at his watch instead of turning around to look at his desk clock. “About ten minutes, would you want to go grab a bite to eat. I haven’t really had an actual meal today have you?”

I could feel the gaping hole of my mouth wide open at his words and quickly tried to reign in control of my bodily functions. Mouth closed, think, decipher his words, reply. Oh my god did he just ask me out on a date? “I had a bag of chips about 6 hours ago,” I replied, immediately regretting the words altogether.

“That doesn’t really equal a solid meal.”

“No it doesn’t,” I said quickly offering up a small smile.

“Let’s get a real me, on me tonight. If this carries into tomorrow, maybe I will force you to buy us dinner tomorrow night,” Damon said with a sharp wink. Two dates! He just asked her out on two technical dates in less than five minutes.

“Yeah, I think that could work for me.”

His smile in response to my words had my bones melting into jelly. Perhaps this day was going to be more than just a good work day, perhaps tonight would be one of the best nights of my life.

(Stay tuned to hear Damon’s side of this fun little short…)