Three Days Later.
Salim & Camilla’s Townhouse. | San Myshuno.
After what felt like the longest weekend ever, Camilla had the house to herself again. The girls were back in Newcrest for the week and she could finally use her arms for something other than baby things. It was a huge relief too — not because she wanted them gone or anything like that — she loved having them over, even counted the minutes till their next visit, but she needed to find a job ASAP and it was real hard filling out applications with at least one of two babies in her arms at all times. To make things even more … difficult, Salim was there too and if she was glued to her computer all weekend, he would’ve noticed, and if he noticed, he would’ve asked what she was doing, and if he asked what she was doing, she would’ve had to lie, again, and she didn’t want to have to keep lying …
So while he was out doing work stuff for the next few hours, she was on her laptop, headphones in place, with her Get Shit Done playlist on repeat, applying for damn near everything Findajob.com had to offer. She had a good rhythm going too, until — she was interrupted by an unexpected, but not completely unplanned, visit from Cassandra.
Camilla, surprised to see her: Hey girl … what’s up?
Cassandra: [looks down at her feet] You’re … not dressed.
Camilla, confused: Um … should I be?
Cassandra: [chuckles] Yeah, unless you plan on going to the mall barefoot.
The mall! It completely slipped her mind. With her employment crisis, kind of taking over her life at the moment, she forgot all about Cassandra picking her up so they could get Winterfest gifts for both of their men.
Camilla: Oh Cass … I forgot. I’ve been so busy trying to …
Cassandra: Trying to what? [looks around] What you in here doing?
Camilla: [sighs] I need to tell you something, but promise you won’t tell Jes, okay?
Camilla told her friends everything and she would never ask one to keep secrets from the other, but this time was different. This time she did something stupid. Something really, really stupid and as much as she appreciated Jesminder’s brutal honesty, she did not need her reminding her how stupid it was. She already felt bad enough …
Cassandra: Oh God, please tell me you’re not pregnant again.
Camilla: What? No, it’s not that but … you’re not gonna tell Jes right?
Cassandra: [sits down] I won’t. Tell me what’s going on.
Camilla: [exhales deeply] I got [whispers] fired.
Cassandra: What?! How?!
Camilla: I don’t know- I just fell behind on my work and stuff and [voice trails off] got in trouble for it …
Cassandra: And let me guess, you didn’t tell Salim right?
Camilla: Ye- what makes you think that?
Cassandra: Cause you don’t want Jes to know and the only reason you wouldn’t want her to know is cause we both know what she’s going to say.
Camilla: [sighs] Yeah …
Cassandra: So why haven’t you told him yet? You think he’s going to flip out or something?
That’s exactly what she thought, well, initially she did, but after sitting on it for a few days, the outcome playing in her head, was way less dramatic than before. The images of him yelling or breaking up with her weren’t there anymore but she was seeing something else that was just as bad to her.
Camilla: [sits next to her] No … I just don’t want him thinking I’m irresponsible or that I’m not taking everything we have together seriously … If I get another job first … he could see that I have a solution to the problem. I just want to fix it first.
Cassandra: [sighs] Yeah, I get it … just … try not to hold on to it too long, okay? Cause if he finds out on his own, you might have a bigger problem on your hands.
Camilla: [nods] I know … I won’t.
Cassandra: So where is he now?
Camilla: He had this work thing to go to.
Cassandra: Um, didn’t y’all work at the same office? What if he’s there now??
Camilla: He’s not. He’s at the Times. You know where he actually works. I made sure to find all that out before he left this morning so don’t worry, it’s fine.
Naked Gnome Creative Agency. | San Myshuno.
On the other side of town, Salim was wrapping up an impromptu meeting with a few other writers at the Naked Gnome. It wasn’t on his agenda for the day but he got a call on his way back from his meeting at the San Myshuno Times about some ideas for a start-up they wanted his input on and since the group was already together at the agency, they asked him to stop by.
Once it was over, he said his goodbyes and was on his way out the door, when his path was blocked by Erika, one of the freelance designers.
Erika: Where are you off to in such a hurry?
Salim: [tries to go around her] Home.
Erika: [blocks his way again] How come I never see you anymore?
Salim: [glares at her] You know why.
Erika: [scoffs] You’re still mad about that?
He wasn’t mad. Not in the least bit. Their — whatever you want to call it — ended a long time ago and he was over it. Completely over it. Whoever she slept with, these days, was her business and he wanted no part of it just like he wanted no part of this conversation.
Salim: I’m not mad about anything but I do want to go home though so can you move please? [tries to go around her again]
Erika: [jumps back in front of him] Why are you acting like this? Like we didn’t used to be friends.
Salim: Cause you only come around when you want something and I don’t have anything for you.
Erika: [sucks teeth] I just wanted to see if we could hang out … like we used to. You don’t never come in the office anymore …
Salim: [exasperated sigh] Erika, you’re really going to act like you don’t know about Camilla?
She knew. Everybody knew. Workplace gossip at it’s finest …
Erika: [frowns] Camilla? That girl over on the programming side? [sucks teeth] I figured you’d be bored with her by now. She all quiet and-
Salim: [moves her aside] Alright, Erika. Have a nice day.
Erika: [folds arms] I don’t see what you see in her anyway. I mean she cute or whatever but what you want with a girl that can’t even hold down a job? That’s not even your type.
Salim: [stops and turns around] What did you say?
Erika: [smirks] Oh so now you want to talk to me, huh?
Salim, annoyed: Just tell me what you’re talking about and quit playing.
Erika: [smiles] Well, I heard, she got fired for fucking up this huge project. Costed the company all kinds of money.
Workplace gossip. Back at it again.
Salim: Stop lying. She didn’t do anything like that.
Erika, offended: Stop lying? What reason would I have to lie?
Salim: Cause that’s what you do, Erika.
Erika: [rolls eyes] Whatever Salim. Check with your girl and you’ll find out who the real liar is.
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