“I know. The women around here have the nicest stuff. And my freaking girlfriend and I are different sizes, so we can’t even share clothes.”

We make our way down the hall toward the elevator.


“I understand. My roommate is tiny. I’m not squeezing into anything of hers. I’m happy we wear the same shoe size.”

“At least you have that,” Skyler says, hitting the button for the elevator. “You wearing that tonight?” She nods at my outfit. I’m wearing simple black pants and a white silk blouse that has a big bow at the neck.

“Actually, I’ve got this cute purple-and-silver dress I’m going to wear tonight. I’ll change into it before we head out, but I’ll wear these shoes.”

I lift one of my heels. They’re a deep purple, but the heels are covered in diamonds. Paige got them over a year ago, but they’re basically mine now. I’m obsessed with them and always try to find clothes that match them. Now that I’m thinking about it, I bet a purple bra with matching underwear with them would be crazy hot. I’ll be looking for that for sure at Nordstrom. Maybe I could take a picture in the dressing room and send it to Oz. Maybe that would get me a text back.

“Those are hot,” she agrees, looking at them.

The elevator dings on the lobby floor, and we both exit.

“How about you? What are you wearing?”

“Mallory?” I hear Paige yell across the lobby, cutting Skyler off before she can answer me. We both turn to look at her as she hurriedly walks over to us.

“Where are you going?” she asks when she’s finally standing in front of me.

“Nordstrom. They’re having a sale. I would’ve invited you, but you said you had lunch, like, an hour ago.”

She shifts a little on her feet before looking over her shoulder. I follow her line of sight to see Captain staring at all of us.

“Does he follow you everywhere?” I would think this Captain guy is creepy if I didn’t know he was the head of security here. And the fact that Paige is kind of crushing on him.

“We’re sort of teamed up,” she says dismissively, clearly not wanting to talk about him. “But you can’t go. I need to talk to you.” She almost seems a little out of breath and rushed.

“It’s cool. Do what you need to do. I can head out on my own,” Skyler says.

“Sorry. Next time,” I offer, disappointed that I’m ditching her, but it’s clear Paige needs to talk.

“Don’t hate me when I come back with a bag full of goodies that only cost me half the price,” she teases before doing a mock salute and heading out the door.

“Over there?” I point to a bench in one of the corners in the giant lobby.

She nods, and I follow her over and sit down with her.

“What’s up? You’re kind of freaking me out.”

“I think we should get a pet.”

“You think we should get a pet,” I repeat, making sure I heard her right.

“Maybe a dog.”

“Maybe a dog,” I repeat again, unable to stop myself, because this isn’t adding up.

“Stop that.”

“What? I’m making sure I’m hearing you right. You know, the person who said they’d never get an animal because they’re a pain in the ass.”

“Maybe you’re right. Never mind.” She stands up. “Glad we got that worked out.”

She walks off, leaving me sitting on the bench. What the hell was that? “You coming?” she says when she reaches the elevators.

I stand up, pulling my badge out and flashing it to the front desk. They probably know who I am by now, but I’m still pretty new.

“You’re acting weird,” I tell her as we wait for the elevator to arrive.

“We meeting in the lobby to go out for drinks?” she asks, ignoring my comment.

“No. Come to my floor. We have a nice bathroom, and I want to change and touch up my makeup.”

“Sounds good.”

The elevator dings, and we both get on. I hit the floor for the cafeteria since I have some time to eat now. I might as well get a little something.

“I’ll be at your desk a little after five,” Paige says as she gets off on her floor. I shake my head at her. She’s acting like a weirdo. Maybe this crush is messing with her head or something. I can relate.

When I get to the cafeteria, I get a salad and take a seat at one of the tables.

“Did you hear there’s some big meeting on Monday? I wonder what’s going on. We hardly ever have those. Wonder if the big boss will be there,” I hear a girl from a table behind me say with a dreamy sigh in her voice. Wondering what she’s talking about, I pull out my phone and check my work emails.

In my in-box is indeed an email about a meeting that everyone is required to attend. It’s going to be on the first floor early Monday morning.

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