The Corporate Raider part 23
by Denise Mayes
The two talked about a few things, and Taylor asked how the party went. She was awed by the fact that the President herself had come to the party. When they arrived at the airport, the chauffeur got out, walked around to the other side and opened the door for the two of them to exit the car. Alex and Taylor headed for the terminal without stopping to purchase a ticket since Taylor had an open ticket. She had purchased it when she first came back to the city, not knowing how things would turn out.
She hadn't want to get stranded just in case things didn't work out. When they arrived at the terminal, Taylor presented her ticket to the attendant at the desk just to make sure there were no problems with it. They went and took a seat while they waited for the boarding call, and resumed their conversation.
"Taylor, I was just thinking about something."
"I found out that Salina was blackmailing you, and that it was because of her that you felt you had to pull away from me."
"Yes, partly. The other reasons were because of my own insecurities."
"Because of your grandmother, and your religious convictions?"
"Right. I'm sorry."
"It's in the past. I didn't bring this up to open that up, I brought it up because of what Salina did. I plan on causing her some real pain when I get to the office, but I wanted to let you know that I had found out about what she did."
"So what are you going to do?"
"We will now begin boarding flight 439 to Atlanta, Georgia, all first class Gold Flyers may board at their convenience."
"Oh, that's my flight Alex."
"Oh, okay, well I'll see you in a week or so?" Alex said, as they both came to their feet to face each other.
"Well I expect to hear from you every evening, 8:30 p.m. sharp, alright?"
Taylor grinned coyly, then said in a whisper.
"Okay, I'll call every night that I am there."
"Good. Well you better get going."
"Oh, okay, I love you." Taylor said, as Alex smiled and then leaned down and placed a kiss on her cheek. Taylor kissed her in return in the same fashion and they embraced each other.
"I'll see you soon sweetling."
"Yes, but you'll hear from me every night."
The two headed off towards the boarding gate, and Taylor handed her ticket to the attendant, then took the other part back. She started for the door, but then stopped.
"Alex, by the way, don't do anything to your P.A."
"What? Why not?"
"I'll tell you later. Right now just promise me you won't let on to her that you know, okay?"
"Ma'am I really need you to board?"
"No problem. Alex just promise me okay?"
"I won't do anything today, but when I talk to you tonight, I expect for you to tell me why I shouldn't let on."
"I'll talk to you soon, love you, bye."
"I love you, talk to you later."
Taylor turned and headed into the catwalk to the plane, looking back at times to see Alex still standing there just watching her go. She waved, and Alex gave a brief wave as well. As soon as Taylor turned the corner, Alex took a deep breath, then turned and with a final glance at the the plane, she headed back to the pickup zone where her driver and car would meet her. Alex arrived back at the office an hour later. When she arrived she saw Salina on the phone. Salina, upon seeing Alex, hung up the phone immediately.
"Ms. Lacy, bring your schedule book in and go over my schedule for today. Call Mr. Shearer and have him come to my office with all reports and updates. Also call Ms. Sains and have her follow sometime after Mr. Shearer's appointment."
"Yes Ma'am." Salina said, as she turned back to her desk and collected the schedule, then picked up the phone and made the two calls.
Alex watched the young woman as she went and sat down in her office chair and turned on her computer to log on. Salina came in the office a few minutes later, sat down and booted up her schedule log.
"Ms. Madison, the party was a huge success, there have been all sorts of reports about it." Salina said, making small talk.
"I know, I've seen and heard most of them." Alex said evenly, as she looked at Salina over her brows, while picking up a stack of mail that was laying on the desk.
"Uh, I'm ready to go over your schedule for the day, whenever you are?"
"Fine, go." Alex said, as she turned her chair to look out over the city. She both listened to Salina and read her mail for the day. She commented at various times during Salina's listing.
After Salina finished with Alex's schedule, she dismissed her to go and finish whatever work she had been doing, and instructed her to send Shearer in when he arrived.
Alex, after meeting with Marcus Shearer and being updated on all that had occurred at the company, had three meetings before Yasmeia arrived to see her.
"Ms. Madison is in a meeting, but she will be done anytime now. You can have a seat and I will let her know you're here Ms. Sains."
"Fine Ms. Lacy." Yasmeia said somewhat curtly.
Salina called into the inner office and informed Alex that her next appointment was there to see her. After receiving her instructions, she directed her next statement to Yasmeia.
"Ms. Sains, Ms. Madison will be with you in five minutes."
After a few minutes of waiting, the person Alex had been meeting with came out of the office and Salina told Ms. Sains she could go in. Yasmeia went inside and closed the door behind her.
"Ms. Sains, have a seat." Alex said flatly.
"So Ms. Sains, how is everything going with you?"
"Fine Ms. Madison." Yasmeia replied in the same formal fashion.
"Good." Alex said as she put down a folder she had been holding in her hand.
"Ms. Madison is something wrong?"
"Wrong? Why would you think that?"
"Just the way you're acting."
Alex studied the woman for a moment, and then she hit the automatic blind closure. Once the blinds were closed she smirked, and Yasmeia was feeling a little uncomfortable at the devilish smirk that played at the woman's mouth.
"Yasmeia everything is absolutely wonderful!!! I could not be more happy!"
Yasmeia now smiled, cautiously at first and then when she saw the bright grin on the woman's face, she realized everything was fine.
"Well Ms. Madison, I am very pleased to hear that!"
"Alex." She said, inviting Yasmeia to call her by her first name.
"Alex. So I take it that Taylor is just as happy?"
"Wonderful. Where is she?"
"She went back home to take care of some things. She'll be back in a week or two."
"Great. Well if she needs a place to stay until she can find a place of her own, she is always welcome to come and stay with me."
"Thank you Yasmeia, but that's not necessary. She's living with me again."
"Well, I guess things are working out for the two of you? Well I'm very happy for the both of you."
"So am I. But Yasmeia that's not the only reason I called you up here. I wanted to let you know how pleased, and how very grateful I am to you for helping get Taylor and me back together."
"I saw how much the two of you were hurting, and I knew neither of you would admit it out loud, unless you had some help. So...I played a small part in misleading Taylor into thinking that you believed something about her that wasn't necessarily true."
"Knowing Taylor's desire to not let a misjudgement on my part keep us apart, you knew she would come and try to explain things, if for no other reason than to correct a misjudgement?"
"Yes. Taylor values your opinion of her as much as she did her grandmother's."
"I see that."
"Well then, you understand why I had to do it the way I did to get her back here?"
"Yes, I do understand. I want to show my appreciation to you by promoting you to an upper management position. Then depending on your performance in that position, I will promote you again."
"Alex that really isn't necessary. Besides, I would not want to take a position based off of what I did to help you and Taylor. That was personal, and it has nothing to do with my professional life. I would want to be promoted or demoted whichever the case may be, for my work performance."
"I'm glad you said that Yasmeia, it adds validity to my decision. I am not promoting you based on what you did for Taylor and me, I am promoting you because you deserve to be promoted. You allowed Taylor to help Mr. Shearer with his reports, and helped her understand them in the beginning. Taylor may have had some natural abilities when she came here, but without you to guide and mentor her during her years here, as well as not demonizing me to her, she would have never come to my attention because she would not have had the inclination to come to this floor to warn me of the danger on that day. So no Yasmeia, this promotion is not because of your personal involvement with Taylor and me, but it is based on skills that I have seen you instill in Taylor. Her work is always neat and on time. I have not received one of Shearer's reports that I had to tell him to do over. They have been wonderfully prepared, and Taylor has told me that it was you who showed her how to write such reports in the first place. Unless Taylor did all of yours as well?"
"No, I did my own. Sometimes if I had other reports to do, I would ask Taylor to do them, but it was rare."
"Good, so you understand WHY you're getting this promotion?"
"Yes, and thank you."
"You're welcome. Now I need to make a few calls, will you excuse me?"
"Of course, and thank you again Alex."
Alex gave a nod of her head and Yasmeia stood and headed for the door, leaving the woman to make her calls. Later that day, Taylor arrived back in her home town and was met at the airport by a car and driver that Alex had obviously set up for her. Taylor first went to see her attorney and her broker. She told them what she wanted to do with the interest off of five of the 60 million, then went to her grandmother's home and called Mrs. Jackson.
"Hello, Mrs. Jackson, this is Taylor, how are you doing?"
"Oh, I'm making it, how are you holding up?"
"Good, thank you. I was calling to ask you if Marisal was still going to go to the University in town or not?"
"Yes, that's what she wants to do, she and I have been going at it as far as where she will live. I don't understand why she doesn't want to live here with me and her father, but you know her father is right on her side. They think it would be a good experience for her to be on her own, but you know Marisal, she's such a quiet girl. Except for now! We have gotten into many arguments lately, and I just don't know what I'm going to do. She is adamant about not wanting to live on campus, and she doesn't want to live here. She's nervous about living in the city by herself, so I think her only option is to just commute from home. That way she doesn't have to worry about anything."
"I understand, but you know Marisal is very responsible, and she's almost compulsive about living somewhere that is clean. She was such a help to my grandmother when she was alive, and I know Grammy really liked her. She said that Marisal and I were almost twins in that we were both so shy and introverted."
"I would have to agree with her, you two are a lot a like."
"Well Mrs. Jackson, I think I can help with living arrangements if Marisal is willing."
"Well, I am going to be living back in the town where I used to work. I will need someone who I can rely on to look out after the house and land and things while I am away. I don't want to sell it, and I don't want to leave it empty."
"But Taylor, Marisal couldn't afford to pay the monthly mortgage note on that house!"
"That's not a problem. The house is paid off. The only thing she will be responsible for is the electric and gas bills, and such."
"Taylor are you sure? I mean it will be for at least four years, and that's if she doesn't decide to go on and get her graduate degree."
"The longer the better. I had a renter's contract drawn up by my lawyer. I can have it sent over to you and Marisal and your husband to look over, and if you have any questions just give me a call. I'll be in town for about a week, maybe a little longer."
"What will you do with the place if Marisal doesn't want to live there while she's in school?"
"My lawyer will have a management company send out caretakers to maintain the property."
"Oh, I see. Well I have to admit, it would be the perfect solution, and you're sure about this?"
"Yes Ma'am. She would be able to move in anytime. The place is already furnished, so all she would need would be to bring her own bedroom set if she doesn't want the one that is already in the master bedroom."
"No she loves the furnishings in the house. She always told me what good taste your grandmother had."
"Thank you. So, you think she will want to?"
"I do! It's perfect. I'll talk to her and her father about it. If you'll send the papers over, we will look them over and get them back to you within a day or so, okay?"
"Taylor thank you."
"You're welcome Mrs. Jackson. I'll send those over today via courier."
"Alright, bye Taylor."
"Bye, oh, and tell Marisal, I said hello?"
"I will, goodbye Taylor."
The two hung up, and Taylor looked at her watch and saw that it was getting late in the day. So she picked up the phone and called for the courier. When he arrived, she sent the contract off with him to be delivered to Mrs. Jackson.
Taylor then headed up stairs to go and pack her clothes and her personal items. She also went and got the boxes of her grandmother's personal things like her jewelry, and handmade quilts, and all of those things that made up who her grandmother was to her. Taylor had already cleaned out her grandmother's room of all of those things. She even stripped the sheets off of the bed, washed and packed them away, and went to the store and bought new linen for the bed. Taylor was only halfway done, when she saw that it was getting dark outside. She once again looked at her watch and saw that it was 7:30p.m.
"Man! I haven't even cooked anything to eat." She gasped, as she looked at the mess before her. She thought about how she didn't want to leave it for another day, but she couldn't be late calling Alex at 8:30. So she decided to leave the rest until tomorrow, and go and cook herself some dinner before she called Alex. She ran downstairs, washed her hands, and pulled out the things she wanted to have for dinner. After she put everything into the oven to cook, she ran back upstairs to get cleaned up for the night.
By the time she had finished it was 8:25. She made her plate and headed into the family room. Taylor set her plate down, hit the speaker button, and dialed Alex's number.
"Hello." Came Alex's voice, light, yet smooth.
"Hi, it's me."
"Hmm....cutting it a little close huh?"
"Well I had a lot to do! You realize I Ieft a mess upstairs, because I had to call you? I hadn't even eaten, and when I looked at my watch it was 7:30. I still had a lot to do, but I had to make something to eat and then go and get cleaned up for the night. So...I'm clean, I have my food right here and I called ON TIME, so be nice." Taylor said, with a hint of a pout to her voice.
Alex grinned at the thought of Taylor pouting.
"Okay now sweetling, don't pout, I'll be nice...IF you answer one question for me?"
"What?" Taylor asked, as she put a bite of meat in her mouth and began chewing it, waiting for Alex to ask her the question.
"Tell me why you asked me not to break Salina in half. It was all I could do to keep from choking the life out of her everytime she came near me, or everytime I saw her."
"Well, I'm glad you didn't let on to her. I believe that she will get her's. God does not like ugly, and the wickedness she did, will come back to bite her harder than it ever could imagine."
"That's all fine and well Taylor, but why should I wait if I can help it along?"
"Trust me Alex, you'll be quite excited about the payback."
"Is that right?"
"Well tell me what it is and I can tell you if I will be or not."
"No, but trust me, you'll absolutely love it."
"Hmm...well Taylor Young, since you believe that I am going to be so...excited, about this payback to Salina, how about a little wager?"
"What sort of wager?"
"Well, first tell me that you're willing to wager me, and then I will tell you the wager."
"That's not fair, especially with you! I've seen the results of your wagers."
"Well then, I guess I will just have to have a little...talk with Salina tomorrow."
Taylor sat quietly for a moment, and Alex knew that Taylor was thinking about it, so she sat quietly, just waiting for her to answer.
"Okay, what is the wager?"
Alex grinned at her victory, and then said in a smooth voice.
"Great. The wager is, if I am not as excited as you say I will be, then you will serve me breakfast in bed for one week..."
Taylor grinned at what she thought was a simple enough bet, and because she was sure Alex would love the payback to Salina.
"Okay, is that it?"
"Yes, except....you have to serve it to me....only wearing an apron."
"NUDE?! Alex? Nude?"
"Yes, I love these wagers."
"So I see." Taylor said, with a pout now obvious in her voice.
Alex chuckled, and then sat back and laid her recliner back.
"Okay, so what do I get if I win?"
"Whatever you want?"
"Okay, I want the same thing, only I want breakfast... and dinner!"
"Deal! I look forward to my meals and my sweetling's blushing body."
Taylor actually blushed at the thought, and at the sound of Alex's voice.
"Well I guess you're going to be disappointed, because I am going to win."
"Hmm...we''ll see. So...how was your day? Did you get in touch with Mrs. Jackson?"
"It was very productive. I got a lot done outside of the house, and I did get in touch with Mrs. Jackson. She was telling me how she and Marisal have been going at it over where she was going to live."
"So you think she'll move in?"
"Yes, she'll make a good caretaker for the place. Grammy's men friends will call and see if she needs anything, but I'm sure her father will be over to handle any problems."
"Well it sounds like this Marisal will be a good house guest."
"She will, I'm sure. So how was your day, other than the desire to kill Salina?"
"Well outside of that, it was a typical day."
"I miss you already, but it helps to talk to you and hear your voice." Taylor said quietly, as she now settled in on the sofa to talk for a while with Alex.
The two talked way into the night, and around 1 in the morning, Taylor started drifting off, the days events having finally taking it's toll on the young woman. Alex was talking, telling Taylor about some plans she had for remodelling their bedroom now that they were sleeping in the same room, when she heard little mumbling sounds coming from the other end of the phone.
"Taylor? Taylor?" Alex called Taylor a few more times, then she realized the girl had fallen asleep. "My poor sweetling, hm...sweet dreams, baby, I love you." Alex took the phone with her to her bedroom and left the line open, just in case Taylor woke up and remembered the phone.
Taylor slept through the night, and when she was stretching, she heard sounds coming from somewhere. Her eyes popped open and she immediately looked around the family room, slightly disoriented, and confused as to why she was still there. She couldn't see where the noise was coming from, and it started to bother her. She pulled herself up off of the sofa, and began to look around the room with concern.
"T.a.y.l.o.r...are you awake?"
"AH!! GOODNESS!!" Taylor exclaimed, when it suddenly dawned her what had happened.
She ran over and snatched the phone up off of the holder.
"Alex! I am so....sorry, I can't believe I fell asleep! I'm sorry, please don't be mad, I didn't mean to fall asleep?!"
"Taylor." Alex said calmly. "You're finally awake."
"I'm sorry, I'm so embarrassed."
"Taylor calm down, it's alright. I'll forgive you this time, if I can add something to our little wager?"
"Hmm...careful, you should know better by now than to tell me that. It just leaves so many things open for me."
"I'm so sorry Alex. It's just that I had been busy cleaning up and organizing, and all of that, and I guess I was just more tired than I thought."
"It's okay! You just owe me another week of service, only it'll be breakfast and dinner. I really like your idea, because so many other things can happen."
"Okay, you have a deal."
"Great. Well, I have to get to work, and you need to get that mess upstairs cleaned up. I will talk to you later, and I'll call this time."
"Okay, I'll be in and out today, but I will be here for your call."
"I wish you were here, but as it is, you're not, so I'll have to deal with the phone. The only thing that bothers me about the phone where you are is that I can't see you, or you me."
"Well it's only temporary, and then I'll be back there and you'll see me all of the time. Maybe too much?"
"Never too much. Well I have to get going, but I love you, if you need me give me a call okay?"
"Alright, I love you Alex."
Alex smiled to herself and made a kiss type sound, then said bye and the two hung up their phones. Everyday for the next week Taylor made arrangements for the house, and land. She also hired a lawn service to maintain the land. She decided it would be better than having the older men coming over to the house with the girl living there by herself. She also suggested that the girl ask one of her friends to move in with her. That way they could watch out for each other. Not that the area was dangerous or anything, but to have a girl living at the house by herself could lead to problems if some of the young men decided to pay her a visit. Neighbors were close enough to see anyone going to the house, but at night it was a different story, and Taylor had her concerns about it.
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