”I asked for a report and this is what you give me? ” he shouts, voice echoing inside the whole room. His face was practically colored red, brows furrowed, nostrils flared.

I know for a fact that I did give a report thatll satisfy him. No typographical errors, grammatical errors, nothing. Hes known for being a perfectionist, so I comply with his standards. Ive proofread the document for god knows how many times, and I know I did not make a single mistake there. So, what is the problem now?

Standing still in front of him after gathering all of the papers he threw at me, I look him in the eye. ”What is it that made you dissatisfied with the report, father? I can change it if you tell me what the problem is. ”

That seemed to catch his attention even more, making him angrier than he already is. He jerks his head to look at me with a piercing stare.

Mom was beside him already, holding his shoulders to calm him down as if this is my doing, this is my mistake.

I smirk inwardly because this whole situation just seems so funny to me. They
e making me look like Ive done something so terrible. But I know better than anyone that I cannot do anything about this unfair situation so I just bow courteously.

”Im sorry, father, mother. Ill change it this instant. Before this night ends, I will send you the final document. ”

He shoos me with his hand without looking at me. I quietly walk out the door, papers still in my hands and are probably crumpled because of how tight I was holding it. It was a way for me to control my anger. Being inside that room, having that argument with such a shallow reason made me want to burst, but I can . I can do anything.

The day was supposed to be fine, happy. But I guess I was being too happy seeing what situation I am in now. I scoff while shaking my head. Ill take a shower before doing everything.

”Im sorry for calling you this late at night, Geleen. ”

”No, maam. I was still up, anyway. ” She chuckles.

I place my elbow on my study table and my fingers to my head. ”About the supplier I went to last time, whats the owners last name? ”

I hear rustling and a sudden yelp from the other line which made me worry for her. ”Are you okay? Is everything fine? ”

She just chuckles playfully. ”Yep! ” she says, popping the p at the end. ”I got it! ”

I lean back comfortably on my swivel chair while waiting for her to say the answer to my question.

”Oh! Their last name is Hinead. And it seems like theyve known your father from far back. ”

That makes me jolt up from my seat, eyes wide open, mouth agape. I was unable to speak for a few good minutes not until Geleen pulled me out of my trance.

/Now I know why he was so mad./

”Maam? Maam, are you still there? ”

I clear my throat before answering her. ”Yeah, sorry. Thats— Thanks. Thanks for finding the documents, though that did almost result in you getting covered up by your things. ” I chuckle softly before saying bye and ending the call.

Geleens a great woman. Ive been working alongside her for 2 years, since I was 14. Shes the longest secretary my parents have had. All the past ones only lasted for months, didn even get to a year, because of how their bosses are. I cannot blame them, though.

But back to my father. I finally know why he was so mad about the report I have given him. And how the hell could I forget such information.

The Hineads have been beside my father since the beginning. The Hinead, owner of that particular manufacturing company, is his age. They grew up together, both with silver spoons in their mouths. Though I haven met any one of them, I do know that they have similarities, but a whole lot of differences

I sigh and subtly slap my forehead for forgetting this. While waiting for my laptop to warm up, I stretch my neck, back, arms, and fingers. I tie my hair up in a ponytail, short ones falling freely on my forehead. I let out a final breath and start typing, redoing the previous one.

He wanted me to say compliments, favor that company. But I was just being honest, just like what I do with every other report I have done. He couldve just straight up told me that he wanted them as one of their suppliers, why still need a report from me?

I shake my head, tilt it, frown, pucker my lips from time to time while writing. Will these words be enough to satisfy him? Ive probably written all adjectives to describe someone amazing, professional, perfect. Just like how he wants it.

As I was in the middle of writing, almost done with it, someone enters my room without knocking. And I know it is my mother because she doesn ever knock before entering.

I hear her close the door and thats when I lower the screen of my laptop. I turn my chair to face her direction and I stand up, bowing slightly to greet her.

”Mother, ” I say in a calm voice.

She looks at me with her fox-like eyes making her intimidating. She nods at me. ”You should be ashamed of what happened earlier, ” she starts off.

Inside my head, it was me rolling my eyes. Thinking why should I be the one to be ashamed? Why do they make it look like its my fault? When, in fact, his husband had a shallow reason for that argument. We couldve settled it in a calm manner, without throwing the papers and the discriminating words at me.

”I know the potential you have, Gem. Youve grown in the 2 years you spent working for us. But given your age, of course, I can see how incompetent you are. I mean- ” she scoffs. ”Forgetting something so relevant like that? My god, Gem. ” Theres a tug on her side of the lips, as if mocking me.

My mother surely specializes in belittling people. She does this most of the time, especially when she sees even the most trivial things I do just to have a reason to talk down to me.

I smirk slightly, too. Small enough for her not to see. I bow in a 90 degrees, swallowing the word vomit I want to puke out. ”Im truly sorry for my incompetence, mother. Ill take this mistake as a lesson. I won disappoint you next time. ”

I don stand back for a few more seconds. But I hear her mumble something before walking away from me.

/ ”Useless, ”/ she says quietly but it still got caught by my ear.

”Ha, ” I huff out the air when she finally wasn in the same room. Smirking unbelievably, I think, /what the hell?/

And just like what I always do, I talk to myself about my point of view. Because who can even listen to me other than myself? This is the time I puke out all the word vomit. I say my opinions objectively. And after my chest lightens a little bit, Im okay again. I face my laptop, and I type, finishing what he wants me to so I can send it to him before I sleep.

”Here, drink up. ” He hands me a blue Gatorade with a smile.

I retract my hand from massaging my forehead and accept the drink with a smile. ”Thanks, Daniel. ”

”You look tired. What happened? ” He turns to the wheel now, getting ready to drive again.

When I entered the car earlier, my head was already pounding. And he seemed to notice that I was massaging my head. So he decided that well stop at a convenience store just to buy me some things to eat. Its cute, really. Hes very caring.

”Nothing. Just… things at home, ” I answer, every word getting softer. My hand naturally comes up to my temple, massaging it once again since Im getting a massive headache.

He hums as an answer. The rearview mirror served as something he can use to look at me. I see him glance at my shortly, worried and eyes filled with concern.

”Don worry. Ill feel better after a nap. ” I try to let out a small chuckle.

He just gives me an almost-there smile. ”Alright. Get some sleep, please. ”

And just like what I planned, I slept in the car the whole ride. The last thing I thought about was how to reassure Daniel that I am in great condition. I still need to tend to a lot of stuff today.

In all honesty, I thought it was a very long drive for a very short distance. Is it because I was asleep or did he purposely drive slower so I could get more sleep? Well, who knows? Im just glad I had the time to rest from all the shouting last night. I still hear faint ones but not like yesterday.

”Gem? Gem? ” I feel someone shake me, calling my name softly, careful not to startle me too much.

I groan and shift my position to find a more comfortable one.

Someone chuckles, still shaking me. ”Gem, as much as I don want you to wake up, you need to. ”

I groan once again. Raising my hand and moving it, I tell the person to go away, scrunching my brows in annoyance.

”Gem, the interns are almost here. ”

And that was the only thing to make my eyes go wide, standing up so quickly. That wasn a good choice, though, as I bumped my head before going out of the car.

I wince at the stinging pain on my head, holding on to eat to somehow ease the pain. I step outside slowly with the help of Daniel.

He was giggling to himself while looking at me. This old man seems to be more playful than I am. I glare at him while puckering my lips and rubbing my head.

”You are so mean! ” I tell him sulkingly while he closes the door.

”Im sorry, okay! You wouldn wake up. ” Hes still chuckling but trying so hard not to let it out and that makes his face dislocated.

”Youll need to treat me to ice cream later. ” Im still puckering my lips. The ice cream will be compensation for what he had done to me.

We walk to the entrance of the company and he opens the door for me with a smile. ”M-hmm. No problem, maam. ”

I roll my eyes because he knows how to annoy me. I hate being called /that/. As I do not own this company nor is he my employee. I do not plan to inherit this business, either. Thats why I should not be called that.

We enter the elevator packed with employees. Thankfully, there was still enough space for us. I hear some greeting me Good Afternoon and I just give them a timid smile with a quick nod.

It was awkwardly quiet. I feel like they would have a conversation if it weren for me. I just clear my throat because everyone seemed so tense.

They somehow lightened up after that. It was also time for me to go off on this floor. Daniel was beside me, our conversation earlier suddenly had to come to an end.

I bow slightly when I got off. They all give me smiles, Im not sure if they are sincere. ”Have a great day, ” I cheer for them after the doors finally close.

”You can go on, Dan. I need to stop by my mothers office. ” I smile at him. ”Ill see you later? ”

He nods with his usual wide smile. ”See you later. ”

Thats where we part ways. Him going to where he is needed. Me, well… I guess to the restroom.

I didn really need to use the restroom, but I was feeling rather light-headed that I wanted to be alone for a while. To breathe, to clear my head. There was a constant ringing that I could hear since this morning and it made my head ache more.

I enter one of the cubicles, close the lid of the toilet and I sit on it. I close my eyes shut and hold my hair with both hands, lowering my head.

After some time, I finally felt the ringing slowly fading, my headache still there, though. Thinking that I was in the restroom for too long, I go out and continue walking towards my mothers office.

”Miss Gem. ” Geleen stands up instantly when she sees me approaching her table.

I bow at her slightly as response. ”Ill enter her office to get some files. ”

She flashes me a smile. ”I have it on my table already. She asked me to get it. ”

I furrow my brows slightly and tilt my head in confusion. /Was she doubting me just because of last night?/ To avoid further argument, I just sigh and nod.

”I need to talk to the managers. How many are present today? ” I flip on the next page of the document Im currently reading.

She looks at the attendace sheet she has on her table and brings back her eyes to me. ”Hmm… 5. There are 5 present today. Should I prepare a conference room for you? ”

I shake my head. ”Ill go to them. To check around, also. ” Finally, I look at her as well, closing the brown folder I was holding.

She nods enthusiastically once. ”Alright, then. Ill just inf— ”

”No need. I believe they already are anticipating my visit. If not, then itll be a surprise. ” I wink at her playfully whoch makes her giggle as I walk away from her table.

I was holding on to 5 folders, all had their monthly reports in it. As the managers had different offices on different floors, it was an advantage for me to check on how the other employees were doing.

One by one, I talk to managers. Ask them how the branch they are managing is doing, additional reports they want to tell me, questions, opinions, reviews about employees. I would say that the branches are doing fine, but I can really trust some of their reports. I need to check on it myself.

On the way to the last managers office, someone bumps into me. scattering the papers she was holding.

”Im sorry! Sorry, maam. ” She panics, not knowing what to do first. Apologize to me or pick up the papers already scattered on the floor.

”Please, its Gem, ” I say calmly, starting to pick up the papers which she eventually follows. ”Why are you the one doing all of these? Where are your other colleagues? ”

She shyly looks away, tucking her hair behind her ear. ”T-They… they
e busy. ”

I hum, not entirely convinced. ”You see… ” I find her name tag. ”Marie? ”

She nods.

We both stand up, our hands full with paper. ”You and the others who are assigned to do this should be the one to do this task. Thats why they have a specific position and job to do. Don let them manipulate you into doing their job because its what they get paid for. ”

She lowers her head, too shy to say anything. I just softly laugh at her. Not because I find her situation funny, but because she was hiding her face from me, all shy and cheeks were stained red.

”Don be too shy around me. Im no shouting maching. Alright? ” I hand her the rest of the papers and tap her shoulder. ”Ill be around later to give a sermon. I guess I haven been around much since they
e slacking off. ”

Her eyes widen. ”Oh! No! They
e not slacking off. Just… ” she stops, eyes not knowing where to look at. ”maybe tired of all the work. I get it. It gets tiring sometimes. ” She laughs so awkwardly that it made me smile.

”Don worry, Marie. It was a joke. ” I chuckle. ”But Ill really visit later to check. ”

When just a few steps from the office, I suddenly get a call from Geleen.

”Yes? ”

”Miss Gem, are you almost done talking with the last manager? ”

I look at my watch to check the time. ”Im a few steps to his office. Got held off for a few minutes, I had to talk to an employee. Why, what is it? ”

I hear a gasp from her which made me suddenly nervous. Am I forgetting something?

”The interns. They
e here. ”

”Ah. Yes. Please guide them to the hall. Its not yet time to meet them, its still after 15 minutes. Ill make the meeting with the last one quick. For the meantime, please entertain them first. ”

”Alright, Miss Gem. ” She answers before I ended the call.

When I enter his office, he stiffens, startled as well because of my visit.

”Shocked so much? ”

He chuckled nervously, shifting on his seat. ”What brings you here, Miss Lenz? ”

I make myself comfortable on the small couch and drop the folder on the table. ”Oh, nothing. Maybe I just wanted to. ” I raise my brow and shrug.

”Oh. Oh! Oh, wait! Its the monthly report today, isn it? ” His eyes widen, now realizing why I am here sitting comfortably on his couch.

”Maybe it is. ”

”Im sorry it slipped off my mind. ” He shut his eyes close and raises a palm to slap his forehead.

”Oh, no. We don want you hurting yourself or possibly forget to tell me how your sales are dropping. ” Casually, I pick up his folder, scanning the pages.

”Yes. Yes, I forgot that also! Sorry. ”

I tilt my head. ”See, thats why spare your forehead the slapping. ” I cross my legs and turn serious to remind him that this is not good. ”If your sales have been dropping since, what? A month ago? Why didn you contact me so I couldve been there to somehow help you solve it? ”

He lowers his head. I don really know if its because hes embarrassed or because hes annoyed that someone younger is nagging at him.

”Its better that I was the one to see this. If it were my parents, you wouldn be working here anymore. You know that, Mr. Daqe. ”

He nods rapidly, realizing that I am indeed right. If mother or father were the one to find out, he would instantly be fired without question.

”Heres how well fix this, ” I place both my elbows on my black suit pants, chin in the middle of my palms. ”Ill visit next week. Re-check everything, and set new things depending on where you need it. I need that next months sales to rise again or we will surely be fired by our bosses. ”

”Yes, Miss Lenz. Im really, really sorry for not telling this to you sooner. I thought Id be able to handle it but I guess I shouldve asked for your help. ”

”Its okay. Just don do this again. If everythings okay, I need to excuse myself since I still have to meet the interns. ”

I was practically jogging to the conference hall, scared to be late and have a bad impression. Once I arrived. I catch my breath and straighten the wrinkles on my black turtleneck, as well as my pants. When I was sure I looked presentable enough, I open the back door and see Geleen.

She walks to me, paper in her hand. ”Miss Gem. You
e just on time. The mic is ready, heres the key points about todays orientation. It doesn need to be an hour long. They just need to have an idea. ”

I nod, carefully listening to the pointers shes giving me.

”And you
e all set! ” She smiles, giving me a small wave before I finally set foot on the stage where everyone is looking at me with curious eyes.

e probably wondering why a teenager is standing in front of them. Why is a girl, 2 years younger than them, giving them an orientation about their internship.

I chuckle to myself before turning on the microphone to clear my throat before introducing myself to 30 people who are 2 years older than me.

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