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A Fine Time

A story about business, confrontation, and love

By Gabriel MohrPublished 3 years ago • 15 min read
1
A Fine Time
Photo by Matosem on Unsplash

"I don't enjoy going to parties, and to be honest, tonight is no exception. The only reason I'm going is because of my social status... Or something like that. I started my own company and become extremely successful... Big deal, right? Everyone else seems to think so, but I don't care as much as I lead myself on to believe.

Money is great and everything, but I want something deeper than money. I want purpose, fulfillment, a sense of belonging, and most of all, confidence. That's why I stepped out of my comfort zone and started it all in the first place, all I wanted was to feel good about myself - not attend party after party afraid that I won't impress my funders and biggest supporters."

I turned away from the mirror and started to pace. "You know, maybe I should just say "screw it!" Maybe I should stop attending these disgusting events and just rely on my own money to get us through. I can do it after all, I can make us self-sustaining, it just takes a little more work than I'm used to. But, if I keep attending these parties I get to spend more time with my friends and family. Not that they care, really... What should I do Tabitha? Should I take on the extra load, or spend more time with my family?"

Tabitha made a screeching noise, signifying that she didn't really know the weight the situation carried for me.

"Right... You're a parrot. Sometimes I forget about that."

I sat on my luxurious bed and looked around the room. I would've given everything - the chandelier, the carpet, the dresser, my $20,000 watch - just to feel free again. All I wanted were the old days where I worked and worked, where I felt exhausted but accomplished because I got something done. I remember... My first girlfriend would leave dinner in the microwave for when I got home... She was always so good to me, she loved me and genuinely understood why we couldn't spend much time together. Then she had to leave, and I found my ex-wife. Yikes.

I wiped the grimace from my face just in time for the door to open and Derek to come in. He sat next to me on my bed.

"Nice ceiling, huh?" He always likes to joke and prod around, even though he's a multi-billionaire.

"Yep..." I said in a distant tone. He looked at me strangely and instantly noticed something was off.

"What?"

"What do you mean what?"

"Where's your witty remark? Your comment? Your response? Are you okay, bud?"

I just stared into the distance, the chandelier taking up most of my attention.

"Well listen, you just came into some money. That's why I'm here. Your sister gave me a check and told me to give it to you since she's out of town.

I slowly turned my head towards him, and he handed me a check for $20,129.

"Oh... What for?"

"She said not to worry about it since you already know. She doesn't want the money... For obvious reasons."

I pocketed the check and shrugged. "I don't want it either. But, I'll put it to good use. At least it isn't going to the government or something."

Derek's usual smile came out from hiding and he jumped up from the bed.

"Come onnnn Mark, let's impress your new funders! These guys are really going to push you over the top!"

"New funders? I didn't know I was trying to impress any new funders, I thought it was just the usual crowd tonight!"

"Well, I would've told you but I knew you wouldn't come if I did! I know how much you hate these things. But just be yourself. Isn't that how you got to where you are now?"

I couldn't argue. If I put on a face and faked my way to the top I would been in a worse position than I was that night.

"Yeah, fair enough. I'll be out in a minute."

Derek smirked and shut the door behind him.

I looked at the check again. That was definitely her handwriting, no doubt about it. I wasn't surprised she would do something like this, but at the same time she could've used the money. Maybe I'll invest it and give it back to her when the time is right.

I got up and stuck it in a black notebook that was sitting on top of my dresser, a notebook I had owned for many years. It was beginning to wear out, and I knew I had to replace it, but I didn't want to.

After polishing up I stepped outside the door and was greeted by many, many people. I was extremely nervous, people still made me nervous even though I'm a successful multi-millionaire! They turned in my direction and gave me smiles, some gasps, and a few 'how-do-you-dos.' I smiled back and responded to those who wanted to know how I've been, what I was doing, and what my future plans were.

Eventually I excused myself from the main room by heading towards the back of my home. There I had set up an incredible VIP area for only the most giving of people. Stained glass windows, red velvet and white leather furniture, dark oak and cherry woodwork, gold-tiled flooring with beautiful red velvet carpet, complete with artwork that costed the average man an entire's year's salary. Honestly, I didn't think it looked very great, but this is what my designer decided to do. Maybe she knew their tastes better than I did.

"Ahhh yes, the man himself. How are you, Mark, how are you?!" Ralph was always the first to greet me, a man who always believed in me from the start. In fact, he was my first donator - without him I couldn't have started at all! "It's great to see you, great to see you."

"Good to see you too, Ralph" I sincerely stated as he nodded and sat back down.

Ralph turned towards the new funders in the room since they were sitting behind him. "You know, this man used to eat mustard sandwiches on his way to success! I feared that if I didn't fund him he'd die from malnutrition! Look at him now!" He burst into laughter as most of the new faces smiled and chuckled. All but 3.

"So, Mr. Savage, what was your profit margin this last year?" He put on a very serious tone, almost as if he didn't care about what Ralph just said.

Wait! Something clicked in my head! Hearing him say that made me think, "I don't need this guy. I never needed this guy! I have 20 other funders who are far more accommodating and patient. Screw him! He can go back to wherever he came from." That relieved most of the stress I had been feeling, so I was very relaxed when I gave my answer.

"Our profit is at an all-time high with a 5.85% increase for the year. I even bought myself a new car."

"Do you see your company going in the direction you envisioned? Will your profit margins begin to rise?"

"Our company's profit margins have increased by at least 4% every year we've been in business."

"And you're confident it'll stay that way?"

"Absolutely," I responded almost immediately.

He leaned back in his chair before saying, "Well, I don't like him, but he's a good businessman. Excuse me."

He got up, presumably to use the restroom, and the entire room remained silent. Some shifted awkwardly in their seats before the next challenge presented itself.

"Mr. Savage, I presume you understand that your customer base has many complaints. The most common complaint is that your vehicles don't have as much power as they'd prefer. How do you plan to fix this?"

"We have made six core revisions in how our vehicles are made in an attempt to solve this problem. We're more successful than any of our competitors, however economical vehicles are very well-known for having less power than combustion engines for obvious reasons. We will continue making revisions as new discoveries are made and new inventions are invented."

He paused, looked right into my eyes and said, "tell me, how do you plan to become the most successful business man in the world?"

I furrowed my eyebrows in confusion as I uttered the words, "excuse me?"

"Well, your friend here mentioned that you have ambitions to become the most successful businessman in the world. How do you plan on becoming one of the best?"

"That was purely satire and you know it" Ralph interjected.

"Stay out of this old man" he snapped before turning his head back towards me. "You see, I only fund the best of the best. The best restaurants, the best cruising companies, the best drilling companies, the best blue-collar companies... And the best automobile companies."

He leaned closer to me. "You are far from the best, let's be clear." You're ranked 49 out of 87, so you need to prove to me that you seriously want to become #1, or else you can say goodbye to your money."

He leaned back and took an appetizer from the plate right beside him. I guess most people would feel scared, offended, or intimidated by his words. However, I was in rare form that night, and he was really about to find that out.

I slowly walked to a chair that was adjacent to where this man was sitting. I sat in it, crossed my legs, folded my hands together, and looked him straight in the eyes.

"Mr. Ool, correct?" I regarded with a confident voice. "You should understand something. If I wanted to become the best of the best, I would have gone into combustion engines. But I didn't. I chose to become successful by starting a company that manufactures economic cars, because I value the ability to breathe over how much money I make."

My voice began to grow a little louder. "I understood from day 1 that my company wouldn't be the best, and to this day, I am content with that fact. We are the 3rd highest ranking economical car manufacturer in the world, and this has always been enough to feed and cloth my family as well as expand my business.

So, if you believe for a second I'm going to switch to combustion engine just so I can call myself "the best," you may leave my building. The door is directly behind me."

Everyone sat in silence and shock as I continued to stare at Mr. Ool. It was his turn to furrow his eyebrows, and I could see the anger rise into his face as it turned a bright, cherry red. He contained it very well, and even though it took him a while he regained his composure.

"Well... Mr. Savage. I suppose you do not meet my standards after all. I will be withdrawing my support, and all of you need to do the same. He obviously has no future, and he will fail given enough time. I shall be leaving now."

He slowly rose out of his chair and walked to the door with his head high in the air. But it was so high in the air that he didn't see the gentlemen in front of him, the same who excused himself earlier, walking right towards him! He moved out of his way, but he didn't ask him where he was headed - instead he came into the room and asked, "pardon my intrusion, but what happened here?"

Ralph looked him dead in the eye as he said, "well, the trash decided to take itself out!" His old lungs wheezed with laughter as everybody followed suit! The room instantly became more relaxed and conversation appeared amongst the funders.

I got a notification on my phone concerning work matters, and it required my immediate attention. I stood up.

"Everyone, please excuse me - I have to take this. Thank you again for being here, and I hope to see you again."

The room erupted into applause and Ralph got up from his seat.

"I hope you didn't listen to that nutjob. You may have lost him but you have all of us, okay? We believe in you."

Ralph tapped my shoulder as I nodded and walked away. Except... I could feel somebody's eyes burning through the back of my head.

I turned around and I saw her. She kept staring, almost as if she had no fear whatsoever. Brunette hair done well with formal black dress, stunning blue eyes, a blushed face, and a smile that was unmistaken - she enjoyed what she was looking at.

I smiled slightly before quickly remembering what I had to tend to. She caught on to my body language and rose from her chair in order to approach me.

"I want to come with you."

"You do?"

"Yes! I want to see what's wrong."

Since she was one of my donors I didn't refuse. After all, I just had to go to my bedroom to call my sales lead about a protocol issue. I didn't have to leave the house like I usually do.

"Hey Tanner, what's the issue?" She was sitting politely in one of my chairs while I stood up to make the call. I always called someone while standing, it made me feel like I was talking to the person face-to-face.

"He WHAT?! How could he misinterpret something like that?! Is the protocol really that loose and unfinished?! Here's what we'll do; we'll add a section to page 34 that states, "under no circumstances is any of our sales team to force the customer to pay more for a car when they pay with cash." I can't believe he 'stuck to protocol' and charged them more because they came in with a wad of Benjamins. If anything they should've gotten a discount. If you still have the customer's information on file call them and offer them some of their money back. As far as whether or not he should be fired... I'll leave that up to you. Enjoy the rest of your night, Tanner."

I hung up and sat on the bed since it was the closest seat that was adjacent to my new... Friend?

"Wow, you're really on top of things!" She shifted out of her original position into a more comfortable one. "Most of the businesses I donate to don't respond to important matters very quickly, and I really wish they would change that."

"I take my company seriously, I enjoy what I do and I enjoy feeding my family. If that goes away I don't know what I'll do."

"Don't worry, you won't have to..." She got up from her chair and slowly began to approach me. "Even if everyone else stops I'll give you enough to keep going. Or better... I'll tell you the industry secrets to becoming self-sufficient!"

She sat on the bed next to me and radically shifted the conversation. "I learned about you before I came tonight, and I'm sorry to hear about your wife. She was a scoundrel for doing that to you, and I apologize on her behalf."

I genuinely shuddered at the thought of my ex-wife. "I don't want to talk about it..."

"Well... I recently had a falling out with my husband... Turns out he wasn't the man I thought he was. He was a coward, and not a good man. Unlike you..."

She ran her hand up and down my arm. I didn't mind, but I was never one to rush into a relationship... That's how I got into a relationship with my ex, after all.

"Thank you, but I think we should get to know each-other before anything happens. I'm cautious nowadays, as you might expect."

"No kidding" she said since she knew exactly what I was talking about. "Well, tell me when we can get to know each-other" she said as she got up from my bed.

But wait... That look in her eyes. The look that said "I don't need you but I want you." The look I saw in movies, except I thought it was just fiction. A look that my primal instincts couldn't ignore.

"Wait," I said as she was about to open the door. I walked closer to her and her face began to flush again. She knew what was coming...

"Maybe I shouldn't be so uptight. Maybe I shouldn't be so judgmental. After all, I know your family and they're good people! I think..."

"What?" She spoke in a smooth, quiet voice.

"I think..." I was trying to find the words to say, but they weren't there. So I did what any man would do, I leaned in. She immediately leaned back and our lips united as if they were made for each-other!

Passion continued to swirl between the two of us and we became more and more intense. Everybody was long-gone, and we wouldn't have cared if they weren't since we decided to have a night to remember! Nothing stood in the way between us and a kind of bonding that was special, a kind of bonding that only happens once in a blue moon.

So, is there a moral to the story? Something we can take away from it? I still can't stop thinking about the Night of Magic, and how she promised there'll be more to come, but I'll come up with something eventually.

literature
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About the Creator

Gabriel Mohr

Hey everyone, my name's Gabriel! I love writing short stories, spreading conscious knowledge, and positivity! Author of 3 books :)

Check out my website! www.gabrielmohr.com

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