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Rated: 13+ · Chapter · Friendship · #1803149
An introverted Copywriter meets a new co-worker who opens her window to the world.
Carolina had always been a quiet girl. Since the time she was born, those around her knew that she did not wish to engage in silly conversation or foolish games. She was a simple, yet complicated child, with a world of knowledge behind her eyes.  Now, 26 years after her birth, she was still the same quiet, beautiful child she was at birth.

Carolina---being very introverted---was very involved in her own thoughts, and her mind rarely wandered to the thoughts or feelings of others. It was not that Carolina did not care, or sympathize with others, it was just that she was not concerned. She had created a world and a reality of her own, and having anyone intrude on that was a threat to her entire sense of security about her life. This was the reasoning behind so many lost loves, friendships, and career opportunities, yet Carolina did not care. She had to protect herself, regardless of the consequences.

It was early on a July morning that she first met a new Co-Worker, a tall male with piercing eyes, and she knew that this was not the typical meeting. That afternoon, when they met glances and a quick slight of the hand, she felt something click. Something fell together in the universe, and she couldn’t figure out what or why. All Carolina knew is that the air--the way that she took her first breaths of the morning—changed.

It wasn’t until 3 weeks and 2 days later that her boss asked her to work on a new project for a new client: Farmer Fresh Dairy. The client was looking for a new marketing and advertising campaign for their premier line of gourmet ice cream, and the creative director of the agency put Carolina and “the new guy” on the job.

Carolina arrived in the workroom that afternoon after her lunch break, ready to write her copy and get out of the office and back to the suburbs for the weekend. When she sat down, she looked across the table and realized that “the new guy” was actually the man she had met glances with three weeks earlier. She smiled in a sideways fashion and muttered a small and weak, “hello.”

A grin split across the face of the brown-haired man across the table, his voice resonating when he spoke: “Hey! I think I saw you my first day here…you were at the welcome party?”

“Yeah…” Carolina muttered back, and tried her best to match his large and boisterous grin. She failed.

“Name’s Carolina, right?” he asked, looking her in her eyes, a feeling that made her feel very uncomfortable.

Carolinas eyes flashed and she looked down towards the floor, “Yeah…”

Colton spoke, moving his glance to her raven-black hair, and eventually her downwards-facing eyes, “I never really met anyone named Carolina before. I mean, Caroline, yes, but never Carolina. Besides, my mother is from North Carolina”

Carolina managed to squeeze out a smile, half genuinely, and spoke more loudly than she usually would, “My mom was from North Carolina too…my dad insisted I be named Carolina.”

Colton smiled at her, feeling like he should drop the subject, “Nice name. Anyway, I guess we’re stuck in this office for a bit here, until we think of something workable for this Gourmet Ice Cream line.”

“Have you worked in advertising before?” She found herself asking, firstly surprised at her willingness to continue personal conversation, and then astonished at how rude she must have come across, “Oh, I mean… I don’t know. I’m so sorry.”

Colton laughed loudly, amazed by her self-conscious nature. “No, it’s okay. And yes, I have worked in advertising. I started in the art department at Solomon and Silverstein, and then somehow ended up as a copywriter at Gannon and D’Angelo…mostly through networking I guess.” He smiled before looking at her clasped hands.

Carolina smiled as politely as she could, “That’s a little bit of a jump, art department to copywriter.”

“They’re both art.” He responded, looking directly into her eyes again.

Her eyes drifted down towards a piece of lint on the ground, obviously uncomfortable with the confrontational nature of this Colton character.

“I guess I’m just better at writing and bullshitting stuff than I am actual fine art.”

Carolina found it very hard not to laugh out loud, but was able to contain herself enough to just let out a small chuckle. “You’re very forthcoming.”

“That’s me” Colton smiled broadly and began unloading his briefcase.

Carolina smiled again and began to unpack her briefcase as well. “I have the results of the focus group and the psychologists assessment.”

“I didn’t know there was a psychology to ice cream.” Colton said, all the while smirking in her direction.

“Something about a variable reward in relation to the chunks of chocolate in the actual ice cream…” she said, trailing off and smirking, realizing exactly how silly the research was.

Colton laughed, “Let’s face it. People eat ice cream because it tastes good, it evokes memories of summer, and it is cold. That is that, there is no variable reward schedule going on here, nobody buys a tub of ice cream thinking, ‘Oh shit, I’m only eating this ice cream for the 10-14 morsels of chocolate contained inside…which are my rewards for being a good mom/dad/brother/sister.  In that case, they would just buy some chocolate.”

Carolina smiled wryly, thinking of what her boss would say if he heard the cynical, yet true thoughts that Colton was spilling from his mouth. Something had definitely changed in the office air in the past few weeks, and now she knew what was causing the change—this guy, Colton. He was really something, that was for sure.

© Copyright 2011 D.L. VanVeelen (dlvanveelen at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
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