Books written by Ray Sullivan

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Project: Evil Chapter One - The Initial Interview Part 2

Project: Evil Chapter One – The Initial Interview part 2

The interview room was sparse.  A wide, smooth desk covered in white laminate material was bounded by two chairs opposite each other.  The chair furthest away from the door was a broad dark leather swivel, the one nearest the door was akin to a kitchen chair.  Brian instinctively knew which was his.  On the desk was a buff folder and alongside it was a photocopy of Brian's CV.  He knew it was a photocopy because the coffee cup ring was now rendered in grey.  Daw walked around the desk and settled into the leather chair.  Brian sat on his.  Daw picked up the CV and scanned both sides for a few seconds before putting it back down.
'Coffee drinker, I see,' he observed, circling the stain with his finger.  Brian flushed.
'Only copy I had.  Printer out of ink, shops closed and closing date looming.  Didn't see the ad until the evening I sent my application in,' he said, feeling pathetic. 'Sorry.'  Daw smiled a thin smile, the sort that sucked warmth out of a room rather than added any.
'That's fine.  The recruitment campaign was a bit time-tight, wasn't handled by a recruitment professional and the person who arranged it all didn't have any appreciation of the logistics and lead times involved.' 
'I presume it wasn't you?' asked Brian, regretting the question immediately.  Daw looked horrified.
'Good grief, no.  I'm head of HR and I'm trying to pull this recruitment back on track.  Frankly I'm not sure how I'm going to rescue it completely – they didn't allow enough time for the ad to circulate and the target media was a little limited for the recruitment of a project manager for an international scale project.'
'I saw it in a newsagents' shop window,' said Brian, 'next to a card advertising personal services from someone named Pussy Golightly and beneath a poster of a white Persian cat that had been lost.'  Brian didn't mention that he'd actually been taking the number of Pussy Golightly when he'd seen the job advert.  At least he'd got an interview, Pussy hadn't answered any of his calls.
'The cat has been reunited, apparently,' nodded Daw, 'and the person who ran the recruitment campaign no longer works for Mr O'Feld,' he stated flatly, pointing upwards as he finished the sentence.  'Somebody wanted her to have a job in the organisation,' he said, crooking his fingers on 'somebody','job' and 'organisation'.  'She just had one task to do, two if you count taking the cat to the vets for a check-up.  Couldn't manage even that without losing the bloody animal.'  He failed to mention that Miss Golightly wouldn't be working for anyone again.  Daw resumed his perusal of Brian's CV, pulling out the hand-written covering letter.
'You've worked in the missile industry?'  Brian gulped inwardly.  He'd written the covering letter late that evening after drinking the best part of a bottle of whisky he'd bought in the newsagents cum off-licence the night he'd spotted the ad.  Prior to writing the letter he'd spent the evening attempting to contact Miss Golightly, leaving increasingly suggestive messages on her voicemail.  Eventually, pissed out of his head, he'd scribbled out the covering letter and shoved his last copy of his CV into a post paid reply envelope for the services of Readers Digest, crossing out the address of the subscriptions department and adding O'Feld Industries' address in its place.  He couldn't actually remember which bullshit he'd written.  He hoped it was the usual without any extraneous embellishment added, but as he was in his first interview since leaving the European Space Agency he doubted it.
'Yes payload projects actually,' Brian said, trying not to wince.  He actually had project managed the catering for the remote payload launching teams.  'Very complicated, needed to factor in the logistics of getting all the component elements to the remote launch sites in time for the personnel arriving and ensuring nothing arrived too soon to prevent spoiling...'  Daw leaned forward.
'Spoiling?'  The shudder ran through Brian and the sweat started to cool on his face as it ran down it, chilling him.
'Prevent spoiling the assembly programme due to the prevailing humidity levels,' stammered Brian.  'There was a lot of sensitive engineering equipment involved.'  Daw made a note before resuming.
'I'm sure it's comparable to managing the catering effort,' he said, not looking up, 'although we find that to be the biggest headache on our international projects.  Parts can be manufactured and shipped rapidly given the right level of drawing control but forget to provide food and you can't get henchmen to do sod all,' he said, tailing off.  Then he dived into his buff folder and pulled some sheets of paper out.  I need you to sign these before we move on, he said, flushing.  He pushed the first piece of paper to Brian.
Brian scanned the tightly typed document lying across the table from him, just a little worried about the box requiring a blood sample to be dropped in.  This looked way more serious than his Sky Plus contract, he just hoped it wasn’t as difficult to get out of if he didn’t like it.

The characters, companies and places referred to in Project: Evil are fictitious and any resemblance to people, companies, businesses or places is entirely coincidental

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