A Surprise Love

by Stredwick


A
Surprise Love



by



Austin
Mitchell



 



          There couldn’t be two people more
different than Chloe Bryan and Dennis Reid. 
It wasn’t their height or their complexion or their body type. Truth to
be told he was tall and she was tall and
both were thin. They were both working for Obrien and Charley,
Chartered Accountants.



            “Dennis
Reid, why are you looking at me like that?” Chloe asked.



            “How
am I looking at you, Chloe?”



            “As
if you’re angry with me because I told you to stop drinking and smoking.”



            Both
had just finished having lunch and were sitting outside under a large tree in
front of the company’s offices.



            Marjorie
Reece and Jack Beacon came and sat beside them.



            “I’ve
never seen you two and you’re not quarrelling,” Marjorie remarked.



            “They
must be in love,” Jack put in.



            “Dennis
doesn’t need a girlfriend. He takes out his sorrows in liquor and cigarettes. I
doubt if he knows what the inside of a nightclub looks like,” Chloe jibed.



            “So
I smoke and I drink. Do you think I used to do those things by myself? I used
to go around with a lot of friends. It’s just because things are so tough now
why I’m not partying all that much.”



            “Even
if things weren’t that tough you still wouldn’t be partying, Dennis,” Jack
opined.



            “What
do you know, Jack? A bar’s as good as a nightclub. Sure, you might not be
dancing, but at least you’re meeting people and enjoying yourself,” Dennis put
in.



            “In
a nightclub you have more atmosphere and lots more people.  I would never go to a bar. If I wanted to
enjoy myself, I’d go to a party or a nightclub,” Marjorie opined.



            “Some
nightclubs can be quite stifling because of the crowds,” Jack countered.



            Just
then Bridget Charles joined them. She was tall and very pretty and was going on
twenty five years of age.



            “Weston,
Tanya and Rene just got their letters of dismissal,” she told them.



            All
of them were expecting it.



            Weston
Geddes had worked with the firm for under a year and there were numerous
complaints about his work. He drove a car and the back was always full of files,
but he had never managed to complete a job on his own, which was a bad sign. He
had gotten numerous warnings about his performance. Tanya Gabay and Rene
Distant were just finishing up their probationary three months period and it
was generally agreed that they had both performed below expectations.



            “Weston
came here as a senior from one of the big four firms in the island. I just
can’t understand why he can’t do a job,” Jack remarked.



            “It’s
Tanya and Rene I’m sorry for,” Bridget put in.



            “I
saw both of them just sitting there staring into space. If they didn’t
understand, why didn’t they go to a senior?” Marjorie asked.



            Lunch
time was up and they all went back to work. That Friday, Weston, Tanya and Rene
all left the organization. All the workers were sad to see them go.



            A
few staffers took them to Lita’s Pub in Half Way Tree to have a small send off
for them.



            On
Monday, new replacements came in. They were Byron Roberts, Philbert Quarry and
Allison Garfield.



            Chloe
Bryan and Dennis Reid had a bitter quarrel almost resulting in both of them
getting fired.



            “I’ll
never speak to that guy again,” Chloe said, referring to Dennis.



            “I
can’t see why both of you are so angry with each other,” Marjorie declared.



            “He
wanted all of the new recruits and when I told him I wanted one of them he got
angry and told me that I’m behaving as if I own Obrien and Charley.”



            They
saw Dennis coming over, and Chloe left and went inside.



            “Why
are you and Chloe at each other so much, Dennis?” Marjorie asked.



            “She’s
too stubborn and wants to get her way all the time.”



            Chloe
came outside and heard what Dennis just said to Marjorie.



            “Dennis,
I’m no more thick headed than you. I’ve worked at places before and didn’t talk
to several persons. I think I’ll start it here and you are the first person I’m
putting on my list.”



            “Go
ahead and do that as if you didn’t know that I’ve resigned.”



            “Are
you going abroad to study like June and Reedy?” Marjorie asked and before
giving him time to answer she continued.



            “Did
you hear what happened to Reedy? Ruddy Maxwell, his girlfriend, Sylvia’s  boss, threw this big party for him when he
was going away. It’s six months  since
he’s been away and Sylvia is pregnant for Ruddy.”



            The
others turned around, shocked.



            “My
God, I feel it for Reedy and he’s such a quiet guy. I hope it doesn’t interrupt
his studies,” Chloe said.



            “I
know Reedy did a lot for that girl. It wouldn’t surprise me if it was he who
got that job for her,” Dennis put in.



            “Men
can be bastardly too. Ruddy  knew that
she was Reedy’s girlfriend. He didn’t have to go fooling around her,” Marjorie
remarked.



            “Far
as I understand it, they were friends before Reedy went away. They were
certainly happy to see him go,” Dennis stated.



            “So,
Dennis, you’ve resigned. I sure hope it wasn’t because of me,” Chloe told him.



            “Nobody
can make me do anything against my will. I just want to go on my own. I have
about thirty clients and more will be coming my way pretty soon.”



            Six
months later he migrated.



            “He
just left for the United States without a word to any of us,” Chloe lamented to
Marjorie as they sat under the big tree.



            “You
had strong feelings for him, Chloe?”



            “We
used to quarrel a lot, but I still liked him a lot.”



            “Suppose
you never hear from him again?”



            “That
would mean that he has found a better girl than 
me. If that’s the case so be it,”



            A
year later and Chloe left for the States. Two years later there was pandemonium
in the office as who should stroll in arm in arm, but Dennis and Chloe, both
sporting similar married rings. There were smiles all around for the happy
couple. It was also revealed that

Reedy hadn’t returned to Jamaica but had in
fact married an American woman and migrated to that country. The End.


Austin's blog: stredwick.blogspot.com




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