Bridgette opened the door to show her guest inside. "Denise, thank you for coming over under such short notice. I'd like to make you an offer."
"What kind of offer? Are you one of those weird people," Denise took a step back.
Bridgette laughed. "No, I'm not. But, I'm up to my elbows in files that need to be converted onto my computer. I really need help in my office for a couple of hours each day. Do you think that's something you could do? I'd pay you of course."
"That depends, How much are you talking," Denise asked.
"I've decided two hundred dollars a day would be compensation enough," Bridgette replied.
Denise counted her fingers. "Let's see, that would be one thousand a week, which would translate to four thousand a month. Are you serious?" Denise shrieked.
"I am totally serious. Does this mean you'll help me out around here?"
"Of course, when can I start," Denise asked.
"How about today," Bridgette handed Denise a stack of files. "Come here, I'll show you the software I use to keep the information. I eventually want all those files on my computer." She pointed at a wall lined with shelves filled with files.
"Whoa, you weren't kidding. It's a good thing I'm a fast learner and I can type really fast." Denise checked out the computer software.
"I knew you would be a good candidate for the position."
"Who is this?" An older man shuffled into the office.
"Oh dad, this is Denise. I just hired her. She's going to help me around the office two hours each day during the week. Denise, this is my father Saul."
"How are you? Welcome to our home." He shook Denise' hand.
"Sorry about that. My dad had a stroke a while back so I thought it'd be best to move him in with me so he wouldn't be alone or with strangers."
"If I lived here, I would never leave. This house is great."
"Thank you, would you like to look around," Bridgette replied.
"Wow, yes, I'd love to." Denise smiled.
"Okay, we'll follow me," The two walked down a long hallway. "This is the Living room."
Denise stood in awe. "I'm afraid to touch anything in here." She stood still. "That's a huge television."
“Don’t be silly. I want you to make yourself at home,” Bridgette replied. “Follow me.” She led Denise to another room of the house. “This is my favorite part of the house.”
“Wow, I’ve never known anyone with an actual solar room.” She looked around.
“I find it very relaxing. I love to come in here and read or just work. I actually hate sitting in the office. Nine times out of ten, you will find me here.”
Denise shook her head. “Okay.” She followed Bridgette down the long hallway.
“This is my dad’s space. You would want to steer clear unless you enjoy old war stories." She laughed.
“Hello again,” Saul waved. He continued to flip through the magazine.
“I was just showing Denise the house.”
“I can hear just fine, you don’t have to scream honey.”
Bridgette whispered, “He doesn’t usually have his hearing aid on. Sorry Dad."
Denise laughed. "Your house is really nice.”
“Why thank you. Now, you’ve seen all the major rooms. As you already know you have a bathroom right in the office. So, would you like to get started on a couple of files today?”
“Sure, would you mind if I called home. I should check in with my mother so she will know where I am,” Denise asked.
“Oh, go right ahead. I’ll give you some privacy.” Bridgette exited the office and closed the door behind her.
Denise twirled the phone cord around her finger. “Hi mom, how was your day?”
“It was okay until I made it home only to find my teenage daughter was not here. Who is this Bridgette Pattison number you’re calling from?”
“Oh, that’s what I wanted to tell you. I met this lady and she has this youth program. She offered me a job mom. I will make two hundred dollars a day. She wants me to work Monday through Friday for just two hours. Do you think that would help us keep the house?”
“Wait a minute honey and slow down. You should have talked to me about this before you made a commitment on your own. I don’t want you to have to worry about bills and money. You should be enjoying your teenage life honey.”
“Mom, how can I enjoy being a teenager knowing you are barely making ends meet? I want to help. Would you allow me to do that,” Denise asked.
“What type of job is this? I don’t know this person. I don’t want you to put yourself in danger chasing a dollar dear.”
“Mom, you have her name, Bridgette. She’s a very nice woman. Her father also lives here. He’s really old and he had a stroke not too long ago. So, she has to take care of him. Trust me, they’re nice people.”
“When will you be home,” Pamela asked.
“I should be in by six thirty.”
“Good, I want to talk more about this when you make it home young lady. I need her address as well.”
“Yes, ma’am,” Denise replied.
“I really think it’s very grown up of you to want to help out, okay.”
“Thanks mom, I’ll be home shortly.” Denise placed the phone back into its cradle. She grabbed a file and began typing the needed information into the computer.
Bridgette knocked on the door and slowly walked into the office. “Oh, I didn’t know if you were still on the phone. Is everything okay?”
“Yes, my mom was just worried about what type of people you guys were and what I was doing here. She says we’re going to talk more when I go home tonight,” Denise explained.
Bridgette sat in the tall maroon chair. “I could understand that. She’s just protecting you.”
“The day I met you at the store, you told me you had a baby,” Denise stated.
“Where is she or he,” Denise asked.
Bridgette smiled. “You are very observant. That’s a good thing,” Bridgette replied. “My daughter is upstairs with her nanny. The one area I haven’t shown you.”
“Will I get to see the baby," Denise asked.
Bridgette hesitated. “I would love for you to meet Aamori but she’s a little sick. She has somehow gotten a bug and right now I need to limit any possible germs from her. But, I promise as soon as she’s better I will introduce you to her.”
Denise smiled. “Aamori is a pretty name.”
“Thank you, her dad named her. God rest his soul,” Bridgette replied.
Denise closed the file to move on the next. “Oh, I’m sorry. So, you lost your husband? Aamori and I already have something in common. Both our dads are gone.” She sighed.
Bridgette stood. “Hey, do you need anything to drink or eat?”
Denise looked at the clock. “No, it’s almost time for me to go. I better start out now so my mom won’t be worried.”
“Oh, no, I’ll drive you. Just let me grab my keys and we’ll head out.”
“Thanks,” Denise replied.