Humming to a song she was listening to, Emily was walking from the staff’s quarters to the main house with a little bit of peps to her steps. This was going to be her first day at her first job ever.
Good god, she didn’t want to mess things up!
She desperately needed the job. And given her situation, and her inexperience, she was fairly sure it wasn’t going to be easy to go job hunting once again. She was lucky she had been hired to begin with.
The contract said that she ought to not interact with anyone outside the staff.
Well, it was a good thing for she wasn’t interested in the undoubtedly filthy rich owner of the estate. She guessed he was an old geezer who had been unfaithful to his wife on one too many occasions, hence the clause that forbid her from approaching her boss.
Her plain black dress had a frilly white apron on it – the outfit was basically forced upon her. She wasn’t one to wear dresses often, but she didn’t have much of a choice, given her precarious situation.
She briefly wondered if she would even survive the day, as her overly pessimistic side got the best of her, and had to shake her head to chase the silly notion away.
Emily tried to see hope and light at the end of the dark tunnel, and thus kept telling herself she was going to do her job exactly as it was expected of her, get her money at the end of the month, and do it all over again – until she gained enough money to get away from her shitty little town.
“Careful there,” someone called and Emily snapped out of her musings when a hand grabbed her wrist to stop her in her tracks.
She turned to look at the person with a raised eyebrow but didn’t speak a word.
“You almost stepped on my dad’s precious roses,” the guy who was maybe her age said in a slightly chastising tone.
Emily looked at the ground with wide eyes, and saw that the guy wasn’t lying.
She blushed to her utter and complete dismay, and started apologizing profusely, “Oh my god, I am so sorry. I didn’t mean to do that. I’m not going to get fired, am I? I have not even started working yet…”
“Easy,” the guy smiled at her to try to reassure her. “No harm done. I’m Paul, the gardener’s son. You must be the new maid.”
“I’m Emily,” she nodded at him, confirming his statement, even if she didn’t really need to. He hadn’t really asked her, had he?
“Well, Emily,” he began in a light tone, “Please be careful as to where you are walking from now on.”
“I will,” she told him with a soft smile as she looked at his beautifully open face.
Paul was someone she could already see herself befriending. He had messy blond hair that fell down to his ears, blue eyes in which any woman would be glad to drown, and an athletic body to drool over.
Her fleeting assessment of his physique might have not gone unnoticed by him… but whether he realized she was checking him out or not, he chose not to comment on it.
And for that, she appreciated him even more as a person, she had to admit.
“Well, I’m off to work. I keep watch at the gate. We wouldn’t want to be late,” he announced.
Emily agreed with a nod and a bright smile. “Yes, we wouldn’t want that.”
And with that, they parted ways.
** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
Emily’s first day at work went well. Se well, it was comforting in a way.
When she left the estate at exactly 5:30, she was happy for herself. She had been directed to the first floor and asked to dust the furniture and mop the floor along with a woman named Cecilia.
Cecilia wasn’t nearly as friendly as Paul, but her attitude was still a far cry from the haughty coldness the housekeeper exuded.
When Emily tried to make small talk with the thirty-something looking woman, Cecilia’s only response was a chiding of sorts, “I am here to do my job, not to make friends, little girl.”
Emily’s eyes went wide as saucers and she blushed in utter mortification. She then just nodded her understanding.
Emily wasn’t a talkative person by nature, but this was her first time getting a job, and a part of her wanted to be liked, appreciated even.
It was a shame the only coworker she had to spend time with didn’t want to get to know her.
Let’s not be silly here, she inwardly admonished herself. You could very well be her daughter.
Then, as she busied herself with work, she almost didn’t feel the time pass.
When the Normandy clock declared the beginning of lunch break at noon, Cecilia stopped dusting at once, contrarily to Emily who wanted to finish cleaning the probably deliriously expensive vase that was in her hands.
“It’s lunch break already,” she told her briskly.
“Let me just…” Emily said in response, only to be interrupted by her coworker.
“Lunch break is of exactly one hour. Let’s not waste the time that’s supposed to be spent eating and resting over cleaning.”
Although her tone wasn’t exactly friendly, she was advising Emily in her own way.
Emily could feel a smile threaten to take over her lips, as she appreciated her coworker’s thoughtfulness. She nodded and placed the vase back to its original place, making a mental note not to forget it later on.
The estate’s staff didn’t need to bring their lunch for they were fed on-site, and thus the two maids only headed to the kitchen where they were both given disposable lunch boxes.
Emily was glad she didn’t have to cook for herself in the morning before coming to the estate. Not only was the food tasty – more than anything she could have ever made herself – but it also allowed her to save up on grocery.
She wasn’t stingy per se but if she wanted to get out of this town soon, she needed to make-do with her budget and not go over it.
Life could be harsh. So far, it had stolen her parents and her college life from her, but she would rather die a thousand times before allowing her dreams and ambitions to pass into oblivion.
She shall make it or die trying, as the saying goes.