Things took a slight turn when he went to Brodie's office. He heard yelling as he got off the elevator. Recognizing Brodie's voice, he followed the deafening bellow to a conference room. There, he saw his friend in an argument with a short, extremely fat man whose jowly face was nearly purple. He stood less than a foot from Brodie, yelling up at the younger man's chin. Strangely, his friend's size didn't seem to be intimidating the other man. Curious, Chas watched a moment to determine the dynamic of the confrontation, until the fat man poked Brodie in the chest with one fat index finger.
Seeing his friend was about to blow his top, Chas walked in. “Oi, Brodie!” he greeted his friend cheerfully, insinuating himself between the two men. “Who's this?” He turned to face the fat man, who looked like he was fending off a heart attack.
“That's Mr. Stevens.”
“The health club guy?”
“The very one.”
“Problem?” Chas directed at Stevens.
“Those are my goddamn plans, Brodie!”
“No, they sure aren't. You didn't pay for them, so they're mine. I can do what I want with them.”
“I'll make you wish you'd never met me.”
Brodie laughed loudly. It was an ugly, flat sound. “I was sorry the first day, you fat assed bastard.”
“You can't talk to me like that! I'll sue.”
“You just called me a pansy assed girlie boy,” Brodie snarled. “I'm speaking the truth. You're not.”
“Okay, let's take a breath,” Chas said, putting his hands gently against each chest.
Pressing against Brodie was like trying to tear down the Wall of Jericho single handed. Mr. Stevens was like pushing the Stay Puft Marshmallow man. Brodie didn't move, but Stevens stumbled back a step.
“Those plans are mine!” Stevens yelled past Chas.
“Oi! Unnecessary volume, old man. Sit!” He pointed at a chair.
To his surprise, Stevens sat.
“You—hallway conference,” he said to Brodie. “Don't move,” he told Stevens. Yanking on Brodie's sleeve, he dragged him into the hall. “Speak.”
“The plans we're using for the Ravenwood project, they're based on plans I drew up for his newest gym. Modified, re-woked, perfected, additional space for the dorms. He hadn't paid us a cent, rejected them, decided against the project. Now, all of a sudden, he wants them.”
“They had the article in the paper about the ground breaking, didn't they.”
“Yep. Along with pictures of the model and basic floor plan. So, fat-ass thinks he can mop up if he builds the facility himself. He hasn't put down a penny on those plans. He always does this, I should know better. But, dammit, we spent a lot of time on that project and he hated every permutation. Belinda loved them and only asked for a couple changes to accommodate her staff. Easy fixes. God, working with that woman is an absolute dream.”
“So, does he have legal recourse?”
“No. I have paperwork showing he rejected the plans.”
“Then call your lawyer, let him call his, and they can hash it out.”
Brodie sighed, running his hand through his blond, wavy hair. “When did you become the voice of reason?”
“When I saw my friend ready to put his fist through a fat fuck. What happened to the Brodie self-control?”
“Died a horrible death when I met that man. He's enough to make the Pope curse. And Gandhi homicidal.”
“Boss doesn't want me to.”
“His is a very lucrative account.”
“Do you need the manky twat's money?”
“Then fire him. He's been a thorn for years. He's here, have at it.”
Brodie looked at Stevens through the glass wall. The man was muttering and tapping his fingers on the table. Nodding, Brodie straightened his tie and squared his impeccably clad shoulders. Expensive tailored suit clung to the muscular bulk of his frame as he walked back into the conference room.
“You'll be sorry, Brodie! Mark my words.”
“No, not at all. You're the one who will be sorry. You're fired, Stevens.”
“You heard me. You're gone. No worming your way back in. I'm telling my partners not to take you back. Don't call, don't come by. You are persona non grata. Show your face or call even once, and I'll call the cops.”
© 2016 Dellani Oakes