"Do come in, Miss Vard." The man-- Trevor Macintosh, if the nameplate on
his desk was to be believed-- gestured to the chair before him with a
smile. Mr. Macintosh was tall, handsome and bespectacled, with a lean face
and sharp features. He had dark skin; his facial features indicated that
he probably had direct african-american heritage from before the Snowfall.
That was a little rare these days; most New Washingtonian humans born
after the 2250s were a mix of the Old Races. Ethnic purity tended to be an
exception to the rule.
In contrast, the girl who entered the
room was short and curvy, with mostly caucasian features and golden skin.
She wore an elegant skirtsuit, deliberately accenting the contours of her
generous frame. Her hair was carefully curved about her head, and a lock
fell in front of her eye as she stopped at the door and gave a courteous
bow of her head. She proceeded to the chair and stopped in front of Mr.
Macintosh's desk, where he leaned across with ease and shook her hand
casually. She settled into the chair. It was comfortable.
"Well, Miss Vard," The tall man said as he folded himself into his own
chair and gestured to a small sheaf of paper in front of him, "Your credentials are ... impressive. Moreover your
references were all quite positive."
"I try," The woman
replied, her lips curving into a pretty smile. "And Ellen is fine."
"Forgive me, Ellen, but I must ask," Trevor said, leaning forward
a bit, "How was Oxford?"
"Fascinating," she said, her eyes
taking on a slightly wistful look. "But I was too busy. I left without the
opportunity to take the architecture tour. The construction of the New
Kingdom has always been of interest to me."
said, reaching for the papers and picking them up. "To business, then. You
feel comfortable running a Layered Service Protocol system?"
understand your concern, Mr. Macintosh." She rested a hand lightly on her
knee. "NWU seems content to give LSP Certification to anyone who can
pronounce the words 'Customer Service'."
perhaps in relief.
"Rest assured," Vard said warmly. "The LSP I
managed with Sylvan Ink Publications was a 25-layer full-feature system,
with a load of approximately 3400 CPW. I'll authorize the release of my
record there if you'd like."
Trevor Macintosh waved that idea
off with a gesture. "Not necessary, I'm certain. Your resumé does speak
for itself. Now, I don't anticipate that you'll need them much for this
position, but I couldn't help but notice your combat qualifications."
Vard smiled very proudly, her hazel eyes sparkling. "I've taken a
Macintosh read from one of the papers.
"Journeyman Certification in Civilian Class Defense Magic, renewed this
past June, C-Rank small arms marksmanship and Dancer-level proficiency
in... dual-headed greataxe? You're a Labrys Dancer?"
replied only with a sweet smile.
"Do you intend to bring a
labrys to work every day, Miss Vard?" Trevor probed, his eyes focused on
the woman across the desk from him.
Ellen's smile didn't even
waver. "I do, Mr. Macintosh," she said.
remained, piercing, on Vard for a few seconds, during which she didn't
even break a sweat. He then grinned and leaned back. "You won't take no
for an answer," He said with certainty. "You have what this job takes,
Ellen, and you have it." He stood and extended his hand. "I look forward
to having you as a manager."
Ellen stood quickly, her curls
bouncing about her. Her smile was floodlamp-bright, now, and she reached
forward and took Macintosh's hand firmly and shook it. "It's an honor,
Trevor," she said firmly. "You won't regret this."
won't," Trevor Macintosh replied with a nod, and it was done.
Return to the story
This vignette by Dog.