Taking Victoria by the elbow, Natalie made a beeline toward the corner of the room. “Victoria, I want to introduce you to your mentor before we get started.” Natalie stopped in front of one of the best-dressed men Victoria had ever seen. “Victoria, this is Armond Renoir, one of our newest partners and your mentor for the next six weeks and longer if things work out. He’ll be your guiding light at the firm. Turn to him whenever you need advice. Armond, Victoria Rodessa, our associate from Chicago and your newest protégé.”
While Natalie went into the details of the importance and meaning of the mentor-protégé relationship to the firm, Armond maintained full corporate protocol. He shook Victoria’s hand and nodded thoughtfully as if listening to Natalie. Victoria, on the other hand, was having a hard time focusing and instead was mesmerized by Armond’s ridiculous amount of perfectly coiffed hair with not a strand out of place and his monogrammed pocket hanky.
“Armond will be initially responsible for your career,” Natalie continued. “If he decides you have promise and wants to continue working with you at the end of the six weeks, and assuming you have no objections, then you’ll continue to work together at the firm. He will then give you assignments, critique your work and generally, bring you along in the ways of the firm,” Natalie explained. “Now, I’ve got to introduce others. Get to know each other a bit and we’ll begin the welcome meeting within the next few minutes.”
The moment Natalie left, Armond shed his corporate façade, cocked his head and began to slowly examine Victoria from head to toe. In fact, he had the cojones to walk all the way around her in a slow circle, quietly clucking and looking her over. When he finished his slow tour, a grin crept across his sharply chiseled face, and he nodded in approval.
“Victoria, let’s be blunt, shall we? I’ve heard good things about you, and my own digging turned up nothing untoward. Assuming you are of the quality you’ve led everyone to believe, I want you to know that I will do everything in my power to ensure that you do well.” Victoria took a breath and was about to thank Armond but he held up a cautionary and well-manicured finger signaling for her to remain quiet. “I suggest you let me finish, my pet, before you say something you’ll regret. Now, where was I? Ah, yes. There is one reason, and one reason alone that I will make sure you do well. And that reason, my dear Victoria, is that the named partners of this firm seem to think you have talent and have issued a mandate that you be put through your paces. They have big plans for you, Victoria. I thought about it and decided that the perfect way to better my situation is to oversee the new protégé. So don’t get the wrong idea and think that I care about you. It’s not the case. I intend to use you, my dear Victoria. Your tireless work ethic and your skills will springboard my reputation so I’ll be awarded the most shares among the partners. And if you ever bring up this conversation to anyone, I will deny it.”
Click Follow to receive emails when this author adds content on Bublish