Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Dream On ~ Part 6

Molly’s smiled faded as she sank onto the couch and dropped her purse on the floor. “I just came from work. It’s really bad, Arlyn.”
Arlyn sat by her friend. “What’s going on?”
“To be blunt …” Molly turned towards Arlyn. “… layoffs, and a lot of them.”
“You didn’t get …?”
Molly shook her head. “No, not yet anyway, but if I do, and I’m not trying to be mean, but if I get laid off, it’ll be your fault.”
“My fault?” Arlyn felt her throat drop into her stomach. “How?”
“Because you’ve turned down Cordel Foster and now he’s shopping his manuscript around,” said Molly. “Being able to get Cordel in talks was a huge win for me. Actually, having him a sign a contract would have given me job security for at least the next two years. I’m not trying to put everything on you Arlyn, but I needed that big win.”
“I’m so sorry,” said Aryln. She took in deep breaths trying to steady her nerves. She felt horrible that she had put her friend in her current predicament, but knew if she got too overwhelmed with emotion she could go in a state of cataplexy.
“Arlyn, I’m really not trying to overwhelm you, but I’m begging you here to take the Foster job. I’ve never begged you for anything before. Anytime you’ve said no to a project, I’ve respected your decision and found someone else, but now I’m begging you. If he signs with another house, then I’ll be the first on the chopping block for losing a big score.” She grabbed Arlyn’s hand. “I know it isn’t fair to you, but it’s the God’s honest truth. Please, say you’ll do it.”
Arlyn sighed. “Why me? Why did Cordel Foster ask for me? I’m a ghost writer, he shouldn’t even know I exist.”
“Somehow he found you wrote Jessica Rothy’s autobiography,” said Molly. “He had to have gotten it from Jessica, herself. The company has strict rules about releasing that information. Only she is allowed to tell.”
Arlyn nodded. She knew the contract well and Molly was right. Cordel couldn’t have known Arlyn was Jessica’s ghostwriter unless Jessica told him. Arlyn shook her head. She couldn’t even figure out how they were in the same circles. Jessica Rothy was a famous explorer, like an actual explorer doing real research on insects found deep in the Amazon. She had explored more of the Amazon and found more new insect species than any other explorer. Cordel only chased things that go bump in the night.
“So Cordel read Jessica’s book and loved it,” continued Molly. “When his agent called, they asked for you specifically. It really is a huge compliment. A guy like Cordel could pick anyone, but he picked you.”
Arlyn stood and started to pace. She needed her body and brain to move at the same time. What would it really hurt her to write Cordel Foster’s story. No one would know it was her and even though he was a guy who cashed imaginary monsters, she could still tell his story without any harm to her reputation. She could ask legal to put in the contract that he could never tell she was the ghost writer, but she figured with Cordels’ ego, that wouldn’t be an issue. He’d relish in the spotlight and not having to share it.
She faced Molly who was watching her with wide, hopeful eyes. “Okay, I’ll do it.”

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