“You’re back?” Vivian noticed Finnick Norton and scurried out of the kitchen. “Hurry up and clean your hands! I think I made too much. Just finish whatever you can. If you can’t finish them, I’ll pack them up into a bento for you to take to the office.”
“It’s fine,” Finnick replied as he settled in his seat. “I can finish it.”
Vivian did not trust Finnick’s words. The amount of food on the table could feed more than four people. There were only the two of them in the house.
It was soon proven that Vivian had underestimated Finnick’s capacity. For some reason, he seemed to have a voracious appetite that day. Finnick wolfed down everything Vivian prepared.
Vivian was stupefied. She had had many meals with Finnick before but this was the first time she saw him eating so much as if he was a champion at an eating competition.
The next day was Sunday. Vivian spent the whole day researching recipes and preparing food for Finnick.
Soon, it was Monday, and Vivian had to go to work.
Vivian used to enjoy going to work, but ever since Fabian became the Chief Editor, going to work was like jumping into the fierce waters of the Nile river, except that she was drowning in work instead of water.
As soon as she sat down, Lesley Jenson, the senior editor at Glamour Magazine strode to her in a rush. “Vivian, I have to interview someone this afternoon. Sort these documents out for me ASAP and send it to the Chief Editor’s office.”
Vivian received the documents and furrowed her brows. “Hey Lesley, I have to prepare for tomorrow’s interview later in the afternoon. Is it okay if you pass this to someone else to work on?”
Before Lesley could even reply, Shannon’s voice came out of nowhere in an abrupt manner. “Vivian, is it me or have you been acting funny lately? Pfft, don’t act as if we don’t know your relationship with Mr. Norton. For whom are you putting on that act?”
Vivian was taken aback by Shannon’s sudden rebuke. She knitted her brows at the girl who was on the same rank as her in the company. “Shannon, what are you talking about?”
“Huh, what am I talking about? Looks like someone here doesn’t want to admit it.” Shannon sneered and slanted her eyes at Vivian. “You think all of us are blind?”
Vivian wanted to defend herself, but she noticed her colleagues were peeking at her as she unwittingly swept her eyes across the room. Those eyes were filled with suspicion and derision.
Vivian could feel herself stung by a million needles.
She was very familiar with the glares that she received. They reminded her of the unfriendly stares her lecturers and classmates on campus gave her for an incident that happened two years ago.
Vivian bit her lips. She didn’t know what to say. Thus, she sat down and swiftly finished organizing the files she was tasked with. Then, with everyone’s attention on her, she strode to Fabian’s office and knocked on the door.
Fabian’s languid voice came behind the door. Vivian pushed the door ajar and walked through it.
Fabian zoned out for a few seconds when he saw Vivian. The latter hurriedly placed the organized documents on his table. “Mr. Norton, here are the documents you asked for. If there’s nothing else, I’ll take my leave.”
As soon as Vivian was done speaking, she turned around and headed for the exit. But before she could reach the door, Fabian’s metallic voice rang out from behind.
“Vivian, stand where you are.”
Vivian halted in her steps unwillingly. Without turning her head around to face Fabian, she asked monotonously, “Mr. Norton, is there anything else I can help you with before I leave?”
“What’s with that attitude?” Fabian’s tone grew even colder. He sauntered to Vivian and questioned her, “Are you avoiding me?”
“Yes,” Vivian answered straight to the point.
For some reason, Vivian’s frankness stirred up rage in Fabian.
Yet, when Fabian saw the lack of vigor on Vivian’s face, his tone softened as he figured she must have been taking care of her mother. “Vivian, how’s your mother?”
Fabian was not fond of Vivian’s mother who was somebody else’s mistress. Nonetheless, he still respected her as Vivian’s mother, since he had met her a few times when he was dating Vivian. He only asked about her well-being out of courtesy.
Fabian’s question caught Vivian off guard. The light in her eyes wavered a bit, but she soon got back to herself. “She’s doing fine. Thank you.”
Fabian noticed the tension in Vivian’s expression and hesitated before he spoke, “I heard that you are in need of money for your mother’s medical bills. Have you seen the text I sent you…”
“Mr. Norton,” Vivian didn’t wait for Fabian to finish his words before she interjected. “If there’s nothing else, I’ll get back to work.”