(Stick around. There will be two other parts.)
Darnell Loman walked out of the elevator and into the office at 8:15 Friday morning, wearing his best gray suit. He tossed a smile to Christina the receptionist (red-head, Roman nose, single), and headed for his cubicle. He walked on his toes and jangled his keyring around his finger. The weekend was in sight, and he had successfully shaved a quarter-hour off the last workday. He flopped down into his high-backed executive chair (tan, faux suede, cushy) and sighed. Today was the day he gave the big presentation for the president of the company. He could nearly taste that raise. He smacked his lips almost lasciviously. And of course, there was the special something at 9:30. He powered up his desktop. He could take it easy until at least 9. Hubert, his small-mustached manager (fat, sweater-vested, chronic coffee-carrier) didn’t usually shuffle his way around to the 2 block until then. He slouched, and stacked his feet on the desk.
His watch beeped the hour. He swung his feet to the floor and began typing away. Two minutes later, Hubert came around the corner. His round belly preceded him like a gelatinous majordomo. He wheezed at Darnell.
“Ready for your presentation?”
“Hubert,” said Darnell, leaning back in his chair and stretching his arms overhead, “I am not the kind of person who goes into a big meeting like this unprepared. I think I can handle myself.”
“Mm” Hubert grunted. He rubbed his small mustache with his meaty fingers. “Working hard?”
“Hardly working!” he chortled, offering the joke with raised eyebrows.
Hubert’s eyes went squinty. “Don’t make jokes like that around the president.”