> CEO, Ambryan Hathaway, Out with Mystery Girl! Charlee Edwards is Yesterday's News!
> Ambryan Hathaway Spotted at Parthenos Mall! And Accompanied by a Mysterious Girl?!
> Eros Productions to Start Project on a New Drama or a TV Series? Get the Scoop!
> Hathaway Escorts Unnamed Woman Out of Alight Skating Rink! Witnesses Share Inside Story!
> Who is Ambryan Hathaway's New Woman? Keep a Lookout for Possibly This Century's Cinderella!
Article after article flooded a computer monitor. The name, Ambryan Hathaway, hit 100M results. The top links contained about 90% of his dating life. Only 10% about 'Define Love' rumors. If one dug through enough, a news company managed to link both together.
They created a theory that Ambryan Hathaway would either star or take part in production, using his current relationship as a marketing stunt.
Eve banged her head on her work desk.
'If I see one more headline, I swear—' her thoughts stopped short. She laid her head on the table, rubbing her temple. Ibuprofen sounded like a good idea right about now. She could almost imagine Andie laughing off all these tabloids.
Eyes closed, Eve pulled herself off the desk. She needed to get back to work. Monday had backlogs because of her weekend off.
Still, she peeked at the articles once again. Something was peculiar about them. Each photo never revealed her face. Her bangs thoroughly hid it from several side angles. Others only showed the back of her head.
Yet, in all of them, Ambryan's face was seen.
'Should Evangeline ask him about this?' She wondered as she leaned back on her chair. 'Wouldn't it be more odd if she had no reaction? They did talk about publicity before.'
Eve took out her phone. Thanks to Andie's quick thinking and cleverness, they had used an app to disguise DTC. Its icon now resembled a different app. On top of a white box, a violet symbol had the shape of a game controller with two holes for eyes.
She clicked on it and opened the chat window.
``Lin: Mystery Girl? If we were going to be in the press, why wasn't I informed beforehand?``
Eve stared at her message. It was reasonable, right? The article involved two people, not just her boss. Most of these seemed staged. The pictures contained the same elements about their angles.
It had to be scripted.
The double check mark below the chat remained gray. She exhaled sharply at the sight and put her phone down. Her boss must be on his computer, ignoring his cell.
Then, her cell phone vibrated.
``Yan: I thought we're not allowed to message each other during working hours?``
Eve cursed. 'How could she forget her own rule?'
She sneaked a glance at the CEO's office door and immediately hid her phone under the table. App Disguiser or not, when she opened it, the interface would still be DTC.
One glance at her screen and it would be over.
``Lin: I'd consider this as an exception.``
``Yan: Do you have a complaint? I had my team keep your face hidden.``
'Ha! So it was staged!' Eve cheered in her mind. Smugness radiated off her. Her hunch had been right all along.
Then, she hit her forehead. 'Of course, it was staged. Do I know my boss or not?'
Where did her brain cells go today? Sure, his security team usually relayed this information but she knew of his influence over the media. That was also the reason why he asked her to check.
That aside, she proceeded with her concern.
``Lin: I merely wish to have been informed about it.``
``Yan: Isn't the press a given when being involved with me?``
``Lin: Except, you and your team are also involved in their publication. You have some control over them. Shouldn't I have some input?``
Eve shook her head, rereading her own responses. 'Oh, how easy it was to be bold on screen.'
This storm of headlines would just be the beginning. Thankfully, both her personas had distinguishing features. It wouldn't be easy for reporters to notice her as Evangeline.
Hell, they only saw her as Ambryan's shadow. As long as she stayed there, she should be safe.
``Yan: Alright, Ms. Evangeline. What is it that displeased you about the articles?``
Eve glanced at her monitor and browsed through the articles. She actually didn't have a complaint. Since they omitted her face, they hit two birds with one stone.
a.) Protect Evangeline's identity.
b.) Stir interest and intrigue among the public
This was only the appetizer for their curiosity. A few more teasers should be underway before they reveal Evangeline, building up anticipation. That simple move would debunk any assumption that Evangeline was like his previous lovers.
Then, the main course would be served.
Surely, Ambryan also had a plan about that.
"No public announcement alright." Eve snorted under her breath. She closed the browser and opened her inbox. "How crafty. Who knew he'd be this invested?"
Shaking her head, she sent a reply.
``Lin: Nothing as of yet. But, I would like to be involved once articles that contain my identity surfaced.``
``Yan: Fair point. Anything else?``
``Lin: None for now. Bye!``
The intercom rang as Eve finally closed the app. She used one hand to answer it while the other pulled up her Monday to-do list on her desktop. The list of reports made her groan.
This part of her job never grew on her.
Fuming a bit more, she heard Darryl's voice flowing out of the speaker. "Ms. Hart, Athon Corporation's representatives are here."
Eve snapped her gaze at her computer's clock. Her eyes popped out of their sockets. There was still half an hour before the meeting. This should be the time for her to prepare, not to entertain.
Would things ever go her way today?
"Escort them please," Eve instructed through gritted teeth, implying her reluctance. If Ambryan couldn't push the meeting early, she would have to make them wait at the sitting area.
Which happened to be a place near her desk.
"Will do, Ms. Hart," the old man replied, "Also, may I say that your embarrassed face was absolutely adorable?"
Eve scowled at the intercom. A boisterous laugh came from the other side. She narrowed her eyes in suspicion. That moment shouldn't be this funny. At least, not to him who had been left behind after they entered the elevators.
Then, it hit her.
"You knew he was there!" Eve accused. That would explain his odd behavior. Gah, she should have known the old man conspired against her.
"Yep," Darryl teased further. He smirked through the microphone. "I saw him roll in while you walked. I would have thought you knew."
Blast that convertible! Blast that song in her head! Blast that roller skating rink! Blast that date!
Things had spiralled down ever since their first date. Her reputation as a reliable secretary dwindled. If this was just the start, things would worsen in the coming months.
She really needed to get it together.
"No, I didn't hear anything," Eve grumbled, trying to remember if she heard a noise. All her mind thought about was the song. It almost seemed impossible to get rid of.
Darry chuckled. "Too busy singing, aye?"
Eve stared at the intercom. A deadpan expression painted her face. She merely said one thing before she cut the line. "Just shut up and do your job."
Even after she disconnected, she could hear the old man laugh. That alone was proof that he'd never let this go.
Standing up, she headed for the door and knocked. Dread clouded over her. If she was irritated about the change of schedule, Ambryan would be the same—possibly more.
The man valued his timetable.
It had to be strictly followed.
Eve entered the CEO's Office and closed the door softly. She walked a few paces before she bowed her head. Her hands folded over her abdomen.
Ambryan sat with his back straight. He kept his eyes on the monitor while his fingers continued to type, not missing a beat. Even without looking, he was aware of her presence.
"Sir Hathaway," he heard Eve say, "Athon Corporation's representatives are on their way up. Should I accommodate them at the sitting area for now until the scheduled meeting or is it possible to push it up early?"
He felt the slightest twitch in his eyebrow. He flickered his gaze to the corner of his monitor. The time read as 9:35am. His eyes hardened at the sudden interruption.
He quickly rearranged the task list in his head.
"They didn't send an advance notice about this?" Ambryan snapped. He checked the progress on several reports, deciding which ones could be delayed.
"I've checked. There is none."
"Luna." He sighed. Eve watched as his stern expression slowly relaxed. "Are the articles alright? Nothing amiss?"
She choked. She had forgotten about that assignment. She hadn't been able to compose a proper report. Her mind began to panic.
What was she supposed to say now?
Eve bit her inner cheek as she studied his calm face. It wasn't fair that he was always composed. He should have some weaknesses too.
At that, a mischievous idea emerged in her brain. Instead of figuring out a response, she decided to throw the question at him.
Her head tilted to one side. "Should I congratulate you on your mystery woman?"
Ambryan's typing streak broke.
His secretary hid her laugh.
It was subtle but he didn't miss the reaction. This was revenge for her slipups earlier. Resuming his work, he said, "Push the meeting up by 15 minutes. We'll just have it here instead of the conference room. Prepare the documents for the contract."
"Right away, Sir. Hathaway."
Eve headed for the exit, holding her breath. Her ears picked up on his typing. The keys sounded louder than usual. She didn't think it would work but she was glad that it did.
She got back at him even just a little.
Feeling much better, Eve opened the door and met Mikael's radiant blue eyes.
Wew, I will borrow Eve's line and say,
Will this day ever go her way? XD
Have a good day!
Other ongoing work: Trust and Believe in Love