August 10, 2011 in O
On weekends, I used to go back to the small office where I’d had my last job. The doors were always locked. It was part of a larger complex of other offices.
Outside, there was a covered walkway with a corrugated iron covering that I could climb on top of and just sit in the warm sun. I was up there one day when I heard footsteps below me. It wasn’t until she was standing at the doors that I could see Louise from behind.
She had changed her hair, and was wearing some casual clothes I’d never seen before. I was only about five metres away. If I’d moved, she would’ve heard the metal underneath me and looked. I kept my eyes downcast as she got set up inside. People don’t sense you as much when you’re not trying to make eye contact. Even so, Louise seemed uneasy. She’d left the office doors open and I could see straight in. Eventually, she sat at her desk with her back to me. I could see her computer screen, and watched it eagerly. I was about to find out all her secrets. Louise checked her work e-mail. I don’t think she’d received anything, and she didn’t send anything. After that, she opened a spreadsheet, checked some papers on her desk, and started typing sporadically.
I was thinking of some way to get out of my situation when to my surprise, Roger and Cathy came out of the office doors and stopped there, talking. Roger was the boss and Cathy was his executive assistant. Cathy and I had been good friends when I worked there. We’d had lunch together most days, and had our own collection of private jokes. I hadn’t seen her in a long time. She was thinner now. She was wearing a professional-looking, black pants suit. Under the open jacket, she wore an orange dress shirt. There was a thin line of her olive-skinned midriff visible. I couldn’t resist looking at her face. Her make-up was different and her hair had recently been cut in the same style as before. She looked up at me and screamed.
I cast my eyes downward again.
“What’s wrong?” Roger asked.
“I think I just saw a ghost,” I heard Cathy say.
I knew Roger was looking right where I was, but I wouldn’t raise my eyes to him.