I don't want to be in Audrey's office again. It's nothing personal. I don't want to be in anyone's office. I'm not an office person. But here I am, still trying to make friends with a chair that wants to swallow me.
Audrey's finishing a phone call and I could've waited outside, but Arden told me to go in, so now I'm trying not to listen. It's harder than it is in the car. She puts the phone down and looks at me across the massive desk. "You did well."
"Thanks." I assume she's talking about how I've killed three people in the last week. I guess technically we have, not just me. She was there too. Besides, she's the one who wanted them dead for whatever reason. I didn't have any meaningful motivation beyond it being my job.
"It's been a busy week. It's not always going to be like this, but we were catching up on things I'd been intending to do for a while."
"Yeah, I hate when I get behind on beating people to death." She's had a month to get used to me, so I don't bother dialing it back anymore. I figure she knows I'm not being totally serious, but it's not like she'd mind either way.
"So, how are you feeling about this new addition to your responsibilities?" She makes it sound so corporate and it kind of cracks me up.
"It's not part of my career plan or anything, but it's alright."
"You have a career plan?"
"Perhaps you should. It's never too late to consider your place in things, what your place could be."
I don't want to be having this conversation. Again, nothing personal. I'm just not into talking about this. "I'm good with my place in things. It is what it is, you know?"
"It could be so much more though. You have a lot of potential, Mercy. You could aim so much higher."
I feel like I've had something like this conversation before and it never gets any easier. "What if I don't want to aim higher?"
"Then you don't have to. Your choices are your own, always. But I do hate to see talent go to waste."
I'd never really thought of myself as having any talents outside of driving. It feels like a lot of pressure, having to be good at something, having to give a shit in an ongoing way. "I appreciate it. The opportunity, I mean, and what you're saying. But I don't know. Can I just do what I'm doing for now?"
"For now, but I'm not going to let this go."
If it was anyone else saying that, I'd tell them to go fuck themselves. Audrey's different though. She talks big, but she's real about it, so it's cool. There's no bullshit with her. I lean back in the chair and show it who's boss. "OK, but give it a couple of months, yeah?"
YOU ARE READING
Winter FollowsGeneral Fiction
One month, one city, five lives colliding with the forces of fate. A thrill-seeking tech genius with an appetite for dangerous extremes. A retired contract killer fighting to escape his past and himself. An underworld driver tempted deeper into a li...