Well That Was Unexpected
By David Spowart
Edited by J Matlock
By David Spowart
Edited by J Matlock
Monday morning came and we were sitting at our breakfast table. We had talked to Cals Gramps about an hour earlier, and we arranged to meet the human resources supervisor at 9 sharp. I told Cal I would go there about ten minutes earlier so it would appear we don't know each other, and he smiled and agreed.
"So, come on, I'll drop you off on the corner" he said, as we finished our breakfast.
"Leave them; we'll clean when we get back" he said, as I started to pick up the dishes. I placed them back on the table.
Twenty minutes or so later, Cal dropped me off around the corner from Kenner Engineering; and I walked in as Cal went looking for a parking spot. In Chicago, yeah, good look with that, I snickered to myself.
I walked over to the security desk, signed into the building and received directions to human resources. I kept an eye open for Cal; but as the elevator doors shut, he had yet to show. Yeah, parking, I smirked to myself.
I was on the 7th floor looking for office 703, human resources, and a Mrs Taylor. Cal's Granddad described her as a bit of a dragon if you get on the wrong side of her. I found the office and knocked twice.
"Come" I heard a middle aged woman shout.
I opened the door and entered. For some reason my heart picked up an extra beat.
"And you are?" she asked, as I stood beside her desk.
"Erm, sorry.. Josh Dean. I am interning for a few weeks" I replied.
"Ah yes, Mr. Dean, please take a seat" she said as she typed into her laptop. A knock at the door stopped her.
"Come" she yelled again as Cal walked in.
"Oh sorry, didn't know you were busy, I'll wait outside." He acted very well.
"And you must be Cal Dawson, I take it." He nodded,"Yes, ma'am" in a strange accent.
"Take a sea. This is John Dean.. oh sorry, Josh Dean" she corrected, and began typing again into her laptop. She picked up her internal phone and pressed a few numbers.
"Yes, its June, we have a couple of eager interns. Can you come to my office, Billy?" she said. She listened for a few seconds, then said thank you and replaced the handset.
Soon we were joined by a guy of around thirty and in coveralls.
"Okay Josh, you will be working with Billy this morning, while I take Cal through a few things regarding procedures. I will go over those with you later on this morning. Billy, can you come up with some temporary I.D.s, please" she instructed, and I stood up. I did not acknowledge Cal, and walked out with this Billy. He was pushing what looked like a postal cart.
"So, Josh, what brings you to Kenner's?" he asked.
"I'm studying Engineering, so a bit of practical work experience" I replied.
"So what is it you do, if you don't mind me asking" I asked, while he flipped through some parcels; and felt stupid for asking such an obvious question.
"Oh, a bit of everything: mail run, messenger, draftsman, coffee boy. If they stuck a broom up my ass, I'd be the cleaner, as well" he snickered a little. I smiled at his response. I think I am going to like Billy.
"Is that a Boston accent?" he asked.
"Yeah, born and raised" I replied.
"So, Red Sox?" he asked.
"Yeah, my dad's fault" I snickered back.
"You wanta coffee before we begin?" he asked as we entered what I was assuming was his workplace. It was a total mess.
"Sure" I replied.
I asked what it was like to work here. I was doing my undercover boss thing. Okay, not quite, but it excited me a little.
"It's okay I guess. I mean, I could be dealing crack or meth, I guess; but hey, a jobs a job" he smiled, and I guessed Todd would also like Billy.
"What're the bosses like?" I asked.
"Oh, Mitchell is an ass, Burbank thinks he's Brunel, and the head of development does not listen. Old man Kenner is... Well, let's say the rumor making the rounds is that his fag grandson will be running the place soon; and then the shit will hit the fan" he informed me. The like part of Billy just disintegrated.
"Does his grandson work here, then?" I asked knowingly.
"Nah, I think he's in Europe or something" he replied.
"His old man died in a car crash, or so I heard, anyway" he added, getting a lot of his facts wrong.
I decided to fish a little more from Mr Wikipedia.
"Come on, we have the mail run to finish, then we have to deliver some final blueprints to the printer, then run some copies off for the directors" he said, jumping to his feet.
"So, head of development?" I asked.
"Oh, Lionel, he's English; a stuck up ass if you ask me" he started.
"Well, last year he helped on a project and it was hijacked by some other firm. The directors went ape shit, old man Kenner was seething" he continued, as we passed office after office, dropping off the early mail.
"Baldwin, that's Lionel by the way, claimed his computer must have been hacked; but I.T could not find any trace of tampering" he continued.
"Watch, that's Jack Burbank, head engineer of the north west" he said, as a tall, well-built man of about thirty or thirty five walked past, scanning a folder of some kind.
"Good Morning, Billy" he said as he walked past.
"Morning, Mr. Burbank" Billy responded as he walked past and acknowledged me with a nod of the head, and I returned the gesture.
My first test arose when Cal's grandpa stepped off the elevator.
"Good morning, Bobby" he said.
"It's Billy, sir" he corrected.
"Oh yes, Billy, and who might this be?" he asked with a smile I have grown to appreciate.
"Oh, sorry Mr. Kenner, this is John Dean, a new intern" he responded.
"Oh, hello John, I hope you like your time with us" he replied.
"It's Josh, sir, not John" I replied with a small smile on my face.
"Well, Josh, I hope you have an education while you are here" he responded, and shook my hand.
"Thank you sir, I hope so, too" I replied, and he walked on.
"Asshole" Billy replied as we entered the elevator.
"I thought he was okay" I replied.
"Not him, YOU" he replied.
"Excuse me?" I asked.
"You made me look stupid. Look Josh, if you want to get ahead in this job, do not piss me off; and so far, you are failing... badly" he said, and that tipped the dislike Billy button a little further.
"So, I take it you are that guy?" I asked.
"What the fuck does that mean?" he asked.
"The guy who gets walked all over, and as soon as someone fresh comes on the scene, he's easy meat" I added.
"Shit rolls downhill" he replied.
"And just to get things straight here, do not go running back to old battle axe and complain about Billy picking on the new kid; nobody likes a snitch" he said, and then pinned me to the back of the elevator.
"Understand?" he added with meaning. I remembered a move that Cal had showed me and I placed my hand on his shoulder and the other on his arm. I moved slightly to my right and used his own body weight to twist his arm, and changed places with him, with me pressing him into the back of the elevator.
"Now, Billy, listen to me. I am here to get experience in the engineering field, not to come here to fight the class bully. So, this is how it's going to work: you show me what you are supposed to and teach me what you can; then, when my period of time with you is over, I will go on to the next phase, and then I will forget you even existed, you piece of shit...okay?" I said, totally pissed.
"Ahhhh, you're fucking hurting me, you asshole" he replied, and I squeezed a little more.
"Okay, okay, okay... fuck!!" I released him, ready to defend myself if he wanted to continue.
"Faggot" he replied. Yeah, if you only knew...
"Finished?" I asked.
"For now" he replied.
"No, Billy, it's either yes or no" I informed him. He did not reply when the doors opened on the basement floor. Billy pushed his cart down and parked it next to a car marked Kenner engineering. I watched as he pulled out an envelope from under the cart and placed it in the glove box.
"Get in, we have an errand to run" he said, and I climbed in and wondered how Cal's day was going. I also wondered if Cal had Billy this afternoon. If he did, poor Billy - Cal would go all Bruce Lee on his ass.
We pulled out onto the busy street. We drove down town and pulled up outside an office block.
"This is where we get the schematics proofed into working blue prints. I am collecting them for Burbank... stay here" he insisted... ass.
I had waited almost thirty minutes when he climbed into the car with a half dozen tubes and placed them on the back seat.
He didn't speak and we drove further down town. We stopped in a parking lot and waited... for what, I had no idea.
"Waiting for a guy like me, we do favors for one another" when a car pulled up.
"Hey B, how you doing?" a guy asked, after Billy rolled down his window.
"You get it?" the guy asked.
"Yeah, but I want more than last time" Billy replied.
"A deal is a deal, my friend" the guy responded.
"You go to Jonas and tell him I want more, or the deal is off" Billy replied.
"You are making a mistake; don't screw with him, Billy" the guy added.
"Look, I know this deal is worth $200 Mil profit, 2g's is a shit deal" Billy replied and I freaked - Billy is part of the leak.
"You are but a small cog; you are lucky you even get one cent. never mind 2g's" the guy replied.
"Okay, let me talk to the dealer. I want to negotiate a better exchange for the information. Let me speak to her" Billy demanded, and the guy sensed he was not getting what he came for.
"Okay, I'll arrange a meet. Wait there" the guy replied.
"What's going on, Billy?" I asked.
"None of your concern, so just stay quiet" he insisted.
We waited about ten minutes when a tap on the window grabbed our attention.
"Well?" Billy asked after he rolled down the window.
"The entrance to Washington square park, in twenty minutes; she'll be sitting on the first bench" he replied, and Billy closed the window.
"Another detour" he said, and pulled away.
After negotiating some very busy streets, we pulled outside Washington Square Park. We had some time to wait and Billy kept his eyes on the park. I wondered if I should reason with him, or stop him; but what if I was wrong? What if this was something outside of Kenner? But he said 200 mil; not small change by any stretch of the imagination.
"Billy! Won't we be missed?" I asked.
"They would page me" he replied, his eyes still on the park.
"Who the fuck still has pagers?" I asked.
"It's an app on my cell" he replied, his eyes still firmly focused on the park.
"Stay here, I'll be back shortly" and he climbed out of the car. He crossed the road and entered the park. I watched as he approached a woman and sat next to her. I could not make her out, as she had a scarf and dark glasses on. They talked for about ten minutes, and I could see the conversation was somewhat heated.
Billy stood up and walked away from the woman and headed back toward the car. He opened the back seat and retrieved one of the tubes and opened the glove box and retrieved the envelope. He closed the door and headed toward the park again.
The woman was now standing outside the gate as Billy approached her. She handed him an envelope as he handed her the items from the car. I pulled out my cell and switched the camera on and snapped a couple of photographs. I zoomed in a little and could not believe what I saw.
The woman was Mary Kenner... Fuck! Cal will freak out about this.
I put my cell back into my pocket and waited for Billy to return; and soon, he did.
"They paged me. Look, if you want a truce, it's fine by me; but back me up here, okay? If anyone asks, we had to wait at Porters for the prints, okay?" he asked as we pulled away from the park.
"Sure, whatever you say" I replied, not meaning a single word; but we had to find out how deep this conspiracy runs. Someone else in Kenner's is involved; I mean, he got the envelope from somewhere, right?
And what is Cal's mother doing with this Jonas person, and why? Okay I can guess the why. I mean, she would do anything to screw with the Kenners, even her own son...Bitch! And who the fuck is Jonas?
Soon, we pulled back into the underground parking of the Kenner building. We parked and Billy retrieved the cart and we headed back to his work place.
We just got there when Cal and Mrs. Taylor arrived. He smiled a little and I asked if I could go to the toilet. I left and gave Cal a knowing wink.
"Yeah, could use it myself, if you don't mind" Cal replied.
"Be quick, I want to get Mr. Dean's paperwork completed before lunch" she replied.
We entered the toilet, making sure the stalls were empty.
"What's up?" Cal asked.
"It's Billy, he's in on it. I was there when he made a drop; and Cal, I am so sorry, but this is way over our heads. Cal, your mother is involved. I saw her. She gave Billy an envelope, and he gave her some blueprints and an envelope from somebody within Kenner Engineering. This is a big deal, $200 million dollars big" I added.
"My Mother... you sure?" he asked, and I pulled out my cell and opened the gallery. I flipped past some not for public pics of Cal in his aroused birthday suit, and found the snaps I had just taken.
"Here, look" I showed him, and the color just drained from his face.
"Why won't she just leave things be? I mean, hasn't she done enough?" he said with a sad voice.
"Look, we have to get back, they will be suspicious" I add.
"Oh Cal, keep calm around Billy. he knows Kenner's grandson is a fag" I added.
"What the fuck?" he replied.
"His words, babe, so keep Bruce Lee in check, okay?" I add.
"Yeah, for now; but later, I am making no promises" he replies and steals a quick kiss.
Then, we headed back. He with Billy and me with June Taylor, and it's not even lunch time yet!!
"Mc D's around the corner, 12?" he asked.
"Yeah, sure, see you then" I replied.
The orientation with Mrs. Taylor was long and mundane. Procedures regarding staff discipline and expectations, fire drills and first aid, designated breaks and where you can and cannot smoke, what is acceptable clothing, blah blah blah . Jesus, she was sending me to sleep.
"So, did you get all that, Mr Dean?" she asked. I had tuned out, I mean, I was singing songs in my head to avoid the tedium.
"Mr Dean?" she repeated.
"Yes, Mrs. Taylor. Fire exits at the end of each building floor, and assemble in the car park across the street. First aid is on even number floors and smart dress is expected" I respond.
"Good. Now, go have lunch and I will see you back here at 12:45 sharp" she instructed.
I left the office and headed down in the elevator. Billy and Cal got in on the fourth floor.
"Oh, hello Josh" Cal said, and I greeted him and Billy.
"So, we are both new, want to compare notes before next class?" Cal asked.
"Sure, I could use some intelligent conversation" I replied.
"Yeah, she bored the shit out of me, as well" Cal replied, and Billy was yet to speak.
"You're quiet, Billy, cat got your tongue?" I asked. The elevator door opens on the ground floor and Billy beat a hasty exit.
"You brought out Bruce, didn't you?" I asked, as we left the building.
"No, just threatened a little" he replied.
"He tried to strong arm me, bully me; and Josh, you know how I feel about that shit" he said, as we turned the corner, heading to Mc Donalds.
"Yeah, he tried to do that to me" I replied, and he stopped dead.
"Say that again?" he asked.
"He pinned me against the wall in the elevator. I turned it back and pinned him" I replied with a bit of smug satisfaction on my face.
"You punked him out" he replied, slapping my ass.
"Cal, careful, under cover, remember?" I admonished him, but only a little.
The remainder of the day was introductions of most of the senior staff; not deliberate, just in passing. We met the men that made the company work. We met Mr. Calumn Kenner, the chairman of the board. His face was familiar, I wonder where we have met...I snicker to myself.
I stood where Cal left me this morning. It was now 5:15p.m. and time for home. Cal soon picked me up and we headed back home.
"We need to see Gramps when he gets home; call him and ask what time he will get back" I say, as we pull into the driveway.
After the call to his Grandpa, we sat down and just tried to shake off the events of the day. I knew Cal was stewing about hims Mother, but that had to wait.
"When is he finished?" I asked.
"He's got a meeting with Jonas Heart, the company lawyer, at 6; so he will be home around 7:30 ish. He will call as soon as he can" he replies, and my heart again picked up a beat.
"Jonas, did you say Jonas?" I asked.
"I thought Marty was the lawyer" I added.
"No, he's the family Lawyer; Jonas is the company lawyer" he replied.
"Cal, Billy asked the first guy if he could arrange a better financial deal with a person called Jonas. I mean, what are the chances? He would know you mother, right?" I asked, and he stared at me in disbelief.
"Is Jonas Heart working with your mother to destroy Kenner Engineering?" I asked.
"More likely to take over" Cal replied.
"No holds barred now, Josh. This is our future. They are not getting it, my mother be damned" he replied, pulling me into a comfortable embrace.
"We need proof. We need to formulate a plan. We need to have a powwow with Gramps. He needs to have a conversation with fresh counsel. His present one is tainted, to say the least. We need to find out who is with Jonas and your mother, and who is with your Grandpa.
"We need to know what they know" Cal added.
To be continued...
Okay guys the internship has begun and the conspiracy is being unravelled bit by bit. Hope you like my direction and some feedback would be nice. As usual at firstname.lastname@example.org or Tweet @DavidSpowart.
Also check out my short story found in adult friends called "Sanity Escapes Regrets and Redemption"
Merry Christmas and a happy New Year