Tell of Two Live Chapter 7

Catch up Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Maya returned to the hospital the next morning around 9:30 am and got the surprise of her life when she entered Jamie’s room. Expecting him to be as helpless as she’d left him the night before, she was shocked to walk in and see him sitting up in bed eating breakfast.

What had happened to him during the night after she’d gone home? When she’d left him at 11:00 p.m., he was still having trouble breathing. Every breath he took left him exhausted, which made their conversation brief. But to see him this morning you’d think this was a different man. Jamie, sensing Maya’s bewilderment, only shrugged his shoulders to indicate he couldn’t explain it either.

The question of how this could happen to him still plagued Maya. Jamie was in great shape, he watched what he ate and even found time to exercise at least three times a week. So the only thing that was left was stress. Maya and Jamie had never really crossed the line from a professional relationship to a personal one. He was her mother’s best friend’s son but because he lived with his mother growing up Madison didn’t know him that well. And since she’d started working for him she’d met his sister Bebe and knew that they had a very close relationship. His father had died last year and no one had heard from his mother in five years. But Maya couldn’t hold it back any longer; she wanted to know what kind of stress he was under that could lead to such a near fatal result?

Jamie could tell there was something bothering Maya and that she was having trouble expressing it. So after she’d made herself comfortable he asked her what was on her mind.

She started by saying how sorry she was that this had happened to him and that she was happy that he was recovering so quickly. But she didn’t understand how this had happened in the first place. What was going on in his life that would make his body give out like that? She wanted him to know that she was only interested because she cared, not to go and spread gossip at the office.

He reassured her that he knew her motives were good, but how could he tell her that the stress he was under these days was a direct result to his decision to promote her as his assistant. Seeing no easy way to tell her he decided straight to the point was going to be best. The truth was that once Maya had settled into the job, she began to prove herself to everyone who’d doubted her. It seems that her success had bruised some egos.

Apparently Maya was stepping on toes that she didn’t even know were there, and if Jamie was being honest, he didn’t know they were there either. Jamie couldn’t believe how many people actually wanted to see her fail, wanted her to go running to the partners saying that they were right. They wanted her to come to them saying “who did she think she was to go out and try to climb such a big mountain, when there were others who were trying to do the same thing with no success; and they’d been trained for this world.”

Others in the firm were threatened by the girl who had clients eating out of her hands. She was beginning to make a name for herself among the advertising community. Maya was seen as having great energy and always being able to come up with a fresh idea. The thinking in the office was “how dare this uneducated twit come in and do more to bring in business than those who had been there for years.”

The partners didn’t want to give her a raise, even though her work had brought in thirty-two percent of the new clients. The partners would have gladly paid a king’s ransom for anyone else who could produce at her level, but they felt that Maya was on an undeserved lucky streak and that she’d better be glad she even had a job to go to.

When Jamie finished telling Maya what had been going on right under her nose for the last year and a half, she felt angry and loved. Angry for the wrong that the Powers’ Agency was trying to inflict on her and love for all Jamie had been going through on her behalf. For the first time Maya realized that Jamie really cared for her. No one except her mother had ever tried to protect her from the cruel world. Jamie had obviously gone to great lengths to make sure none of what was going at the office ever affected her, and for that she was grateful. But was she so fragile that she really couldn’t handle what was going on in the real world?

As long as Maya could remember, life never affected her the same way it did her peers. Madison had made sure that very little of the world’s meanness touched her daughter’s life. She went out of her way to protect Maya from the hurt that others around her seemed to live out on a daily basis. As a child, Maya believed herself to be blessed, to have someone who always made the world a safe place. But as an adult she was beginning to see how much living she’d missed out on. What about her made others think she needed to be rescued? She didn’t see herself as helpless, so why did others? She needed some time to digest what Jamie had told her, so she excused herself and headed for the hospital cafeteria.

Keep Reading Chapter 8



Kim Crayton ~ Antiracist Economist ~ She/Her ✊🏾💜

Forging a path to welcoming & psychological safety, in systems, institutions & policies, at scale | Becoming the change I wish to see… |