The Champagne Campaignbyspringhill49635©
This is a work of fiction. The characters, events, incidents in this novel are the product of the author's imagination, as are the businesses, products, and residences. Any resemblance to actual persons, businesses, products, residences, or events is entirely coincidental. All persons in this novel are over the age of 18 years.
Ch. 01 Cassie's Contribution
Cassie stretched and took in the Chicago skyline for the umpteenth time. After all it was a magnificent view with the high-rises looming above her, and below Lake Michigan shimmering in the midmorning sun. The light fell across her drawing board, her layout tables, the flat-files holding all the paraphernalia of her job, and most importantly right now the rough-layouts for the presentation.
Not an easy assignment this campaign even though she couldn't wait to get it. Finally her boss had given her a shot at a big time account but there was no unique selling proposition here. After all booze was just booze; Bubbles Champagne another me-too product in a sea of bubbly scrambling for market share and everything depended on selling the sizzle, or the fizz in this case. She pondered her efforts again feeling that mingled surge of satisfaction and apprehension that always hit her just before a presentation. Today was special; her presentation was for a new client, a new product, and an account essential to the agency right now. It all added up to breathlessness and her pulses quickened as she glanced at her watch. Almost show-time!
A sound at her door and a waft of Scotty's after-shave carried his voice to her. "How's it going babe?" he queried with his usual breezy aplomb as his hand lifted and massaged the tightness at the angle of her neck and shoulder. He was so damn fresh but she had to admit it felt good too, especially right now when she was tensing up like this. He was a groper but the best copywriter in agency and it had been a challenge when she had been assigned to the account with him. It was just that he was after her all the time, and she had never let sex and work mix in her life before. Not real sex that is.
The campaign had been his idea but she knew now she had inspired his copy concept. It had all started a year ago when she was first hired by the ad agency as an apprentice art director fresh from Design School. Right from the beginning Scotty never failed to give her a friendly little nod and a wink when he entered the design department with a project for the group his gaze often lingering appreciatively on her face, her bosom, and her butt.
Such attentions had both flattered and distracted her and she started dressing down to keep her mind and everyone else's on the work at hand, favoring loose blouses that hid the sexy tilt of her breasts and the tease of her nipples, covering everything with a floppy artist's smock that concealed her slim waist, the flare of her hips, and the sway of her taut round little buttocks that turned heads when she went by.
And then a month ago her boss had informed her that she had been assigned to work with Scotty at his request. She had been astounded and pleased, but not particularly surprised when he outlined the copy platform for her and suggested the graphics. He was selling the product with sex and she guessed that her attractions were something of an inspiration for him, an inspiration that soon flowered into a very compatible working relationship, and one that she had augmented with this surprising outburst of her talents.
"What do you think?" she responded with a nod at her layouts.
"It's damn good, Cassie. You're graphics are great. The whole presentation sings."
"Let's hope Connors likes our tune," she sighed nervously. "I could use a shot of good old Barbacchi's right now to settle me down," she added as she studied her graphics of the tall champagne flute with its shape-shifting patterns in the bubbles. Would they see what she had put into those patterns, all those sensual shapes and erotic images buried there?
That's what frightened her. She was going to get up there and explain to Cliff Connors, the client's hard-headed up-tight marketing manager, that she had buried boobs, butts, and the whole damn Kama Sutra in Bubbles Champagne, every sip a randy toast to sex; suggestive of course, just suggestive. Nothing blatant or obvious, just hints, almost accidents. But it was there and that's what would pull the audience into the ads.
If the campaign jelled the prospects would be out there with magnifying glasses turning the ads round and round looking for the sixty-nines. The hot graphics with Scotty's cool "The Best Of Taste" headline would be a naughty eye-popper when the audience caught on. And of course the hints wouldn't be in every ad. But the audience would be looking at every ad to see what they could find. It would be brand-recognition that no one would forget. But would Connors have the guts to go with it? Could she sell it to him?
Predictably Scotty's hand left her neck and traveled down to her upper arm. He squeezed there for a moment and then tried to burrow beneath her arm groping for the side of her breast. "Scotty!" Cassie moaned wearily shifting on her stool and clamping her arm against her side to block him. Actually it felt good and it had been feeling better all the time but it wouldn't have paid to let him know it. Scotty had been fumbling around like this for weeks now, casually trying to cop a feel. She had always brushed him off and he'd never pushed, just been persistent. In truth it was this unresolved sexual tension between them that had generated the whole campaign. The sublimated hours together mulling over erotic images of nipples, breasts, vulvas, penises, and copulating couples had emerged at last in these charged graphics that were now relentlessly tweaking their libidos.
Scotty studied their images mirrored faintly in the window before him, taken as always by the contrast between her appearance and her personality. She looked like a petite teenager but she behaved with maturity beyond her years. Sensing Scotty's distraction Cassie lifted her gaze to the window, caught his absorption in her image, and a sudden throb of satisfaction flashed within her. She knew he thought she was cute and sexy but she had always insisted on being taken seriously at work, and when people caught the expression on her face, they did take her seriously. It was in her large widespread eyes mostly, in that level direct calculating look that said, 'Listen to what I have to say'.
Normally her words soon focused her audience on the matters at hand, but today she'd decided that she could use all the help that nature had given her to make the right impression on this client and her boss, and she'd dressed for the effect of a sophisticated career woman instead of the apprentice art director she really was. As she looked at Scotty she wondered just how effective her image might be.
Under her loose cotton work-smock she wore an elegant soft beige silk suit with a long front-button jacket and a deep collar. It was a lovely fit for her compact little torso. Her high waist accented by the drape of her fitted slacks over her curvaceously trim buttocks displayed the length of her legs to her slim ankles. The whole effect was just loose enough and just clingy enough to be very suggestive, just like her graphics. As for her hair, which she normally wore held back with a demure gold clasp, today she let her long honey-brown tresses loose to fall in soft waves about the sides of her face and down over her back.
She knew Scotty had never seen her dressed quite like this. His eyes were on hers in the window glass in front of them and for once she didn't look away. Letting her sexy self come through at last had an excitement of its own for her as well as him. Besides, everything was hanging on this presentation and she wanted something to make it as electric as she could. So this time she let the sexual tension flicker like hot little lasers between them. But how far should she go? His hand still lay softly clamped between her arm and her side as she looked around into his face.
"You're so fresh," she muttered, but she said it with a smile not a frown and relaxed her arm. Instantly his hand slid to the side of her breast until could she feel the warmth of his fingers softly sounding out her shape. "You're so stacked," Scotty offered soberly.
"How do you know? You've never seen me in anything but my work clothes," Cassie returned, and then his hand moved boldly to cup her breast so deliciously that it made her tremble.
"I'd give anything to see you out of them, Cassie," he said with a plea of gratitude in his voice for this incredible favor of her breast settling into his palm so he could at long last fondle out her succulent pear shape that had teased him so unmercifully for so long.
"Anything?" she laughed, glancing up into his eyes and settling into that soft massage. His fingers left her breast, moved to toy with the button on her smock and it dropped through the buttonhole, the dark space it left matching the widening darkness in Scotty's pupils as the next one followed it. Cassie gave a gentle shrug and the shapeless smock slid easily off her silky shoulders and down the long sleeves of her jacket to drape around her hips on the stool.
"What do you think?' she said posing before him, and the effect was just what she thought it would be. "I think you look too good for words, and for a copywriter that says everything!" he offered.
Cassie could tell he meant it, but what he couldn't tell was what she was willing to let him do about it. She knew the fact that she was just sitting there looking at him with that tease in her eyes was encouraging him, so when he impulsively lifted his hand to stroke the silky slope of her shoulder she again offered no resistance. The soft slide of his hand traveled down her shoulder capturing a lock of her hair in his fingers and followed it down to the slope of her breast. Instantly she felt the warmth flood through the thin silk and over her breast like the sun on the distant beach before them. Suddenly her heart was thudding in her bosom, and her whole being was paralyzed by an overwhelming sensation of excitement. Would he dare she wondered? Should she let him if he did dare?
The question hung silently between them, and then he answered it by slipping his hand beneath the collar of her jacket to find the heat of her breast beneath the thin gauzy little cup of her bra and settle on her nipple collapsing into a taut bud of sensation in his fingers. But then when his other hand began to slide down over the firm curves of her butt she instantly captured it with hers to block the wild gush of excitement throbbing in her loins and ringing in her ears.
"Oh my God!" Cassie gasped lurching for the phone and Scotty followed the luscious dangle of her breasts with his fondling hands. "Yes?" she hissed into the receiver while he toyed maddeningly with her nipples. "All right. All right. Gotcha!" She cradled the receiver as the reality welled up in her. "Connors is early. We've got ten minutes to set up."
Scotty blew out his breath in a puff of frustrated exasperation, his face ruddy and shining moistly with excitement. "Damn!," he moaned, "lightening missed me again."
"You get a rain-check," Cassie muttered, fumbling to straighten her jacket and fluff at her hair. "How do I look?" she exclaimed.
"Like more!" Scotty groaned as they turned to the layouts. Her impulse had flowered far beyond her expectations. She could hardly believe she had been so close to utter surrender.
Ch. 02 Tricky Business
Connors settled himself at the head of the oval table, surveyed the conference room and the agency team assembled before him. He chatted amiably with Harrison the V.P. on his right, and with Matthews the account exec on his left, but his attention was really focused on the art-director and the copywriter sitting together by the projectors.
Cassie and Scott had impressed him with their presentation on the market weeks ago. The fellow was sharp all right, on top of the market and the competition. As for that cutie art-director, she had been quiet but watchful and quick, and her questions were right on the mark. The one thing he was sure of was that she was one-hell-of-a-good-looking-girl. In fact she was even more attractive right now than he had remembered from his previous encounters. There was something different about her. Maybe it was the slinky suit, or her hair, or the way her clear blue eyes seemed so bright, and her skin glowing with the flush underneath. Clearly she was excited but not in a nervous way; turned-on was more like it.
The formalities over at last Scotty made the presentation on strategy. The proposal was to broaden the market beyond the merely festive toasts at dinners, weddings, graduations and such. The market segment they were after consisted of venturesome young singles and married couples aspiring to a definite touch of naughty-ness with their fun and romance. In short the strategy was to bring Bubbles Champagne into the bedroom. And it was a triple sec for women as well as men, women who savored a heady aroma and the piquancy of a powerful sensation upon their tongues captured by the double entendre of his headline, "The Best Of Taste", leading into Cassie's sexy graphics.
Connors leaned forward with interest when Cassie rose to make her presentation on the art-work. She flicked the Power Point Projector on and the image of a lifted champagne flute, with all its phallic overtones, filled the screen. The man's hand cradled the tall narrow glass to the woman's sumptuous lips and her fingers rested ever so gently on the back of his hand as he lifted the glass to her mouth. Cassie stepped to the screen, raised her pointer to the magnified swirls of light and reflections in the bottom of the glass, and while she spoke Connors heard the husky timbre that had invaded her voice.
"What we are aiming at here are subliminal suggestions of sensual pleasure. For example this could be a reflection, or something else...." Cassie's pointer lingered on the vague image of what might indeed be merely a reflection, or also what Connor's discerned as possibly a woman's breast beneath the man's fingers that held the glass. Cassie rotated the graphic to offer another view and now the image that filled the screen could possibly be an engorged and turgid nipple between the man's fingers. Her voice was level and professional as she made another turn.
"And here we have the merest suggestion of a couple in an intimate embrace. We see this as a series of journal insertions getting more explicit as the campaign progresses. Naturally media selection will be in such up-scale men's and women's magazines as 'Bon-Vivant', 'Melannie's Miracles', and so forth. Of course these are just rough layouts and preliminary graphics to illustrate the tactics we are proposing," Cassie finished.
Heavy silence filled the room. Connors blinked and stared, he could hear what the girl was saying but he could just barely see in the graphics what she was describing as the subtly erotic campaign unfolded before him. What he could most satisfactorily see was the firm resilience of Cassie's breasts and the outline of her nipples moving beneath her jacket every time she lifted the pointer and moved between the overhead and the screen. The effect was far more obvious and intriguing than the vague shapes in the pictures.
"I'm not sure I picked up on everything you were describing, Cassie. Do you have the original artwork for these images?" he queried.
Cassie nodded with a little jolt of surprise, and a decided twinge of discomfort. Some of the close-ups were of her self, transparencies she'd shot of her own breasts and her buttocks. In fact she'd used her own breast in the flute image, puckering her nipple with the touch of an ice-cube.
Scotty hardly heard what she was saying. He had barely made it through his own presentation his mind was in such a whirl. He had worked for weeks beside this girl and been thoroughly impressed with how bright, talented, and articulate she had proved herself to be. There was no question he'd had the hots for her as well, and the sample she had given him just now had virtually blown his mind. He'd looked at those graphics of mouthwatering breasts that she had shown him in the past weeks without thinking that they might be hers, but now there was no mistaking those nipples and those luscious shapes for Cassie's own. If what he had felt of her bosom was any clue, the rest of her must be absolutely stunning.
"Maybe if I saw the original shots I'd get a better sense of what you're aiming at, Cassie," Connors went on with a half wise smile on his face. "You guys don't mind do you?" he chuckled at Harrison and Matthews.
The broad grins of assent flustered Cassie while she fumbled for the images he'd requested. 'God! They were all going to get a peep-show now with her-self as the main attraction' she quaked, flicked the projector on and doused the room lights. At least they wouldn't see her blush. And then there they were, her own breasts up there on the screen fifty times bigger than life, with her rosy nipples all pointy.
Scotty squirmed next to her and whispered, "I can't wait for that rain-check!."
Cassie shrugged and clicked as rapidly through the images as she dared while the hot flush mounted moistly beneath her silky jacket molding it ever more closely to her bosom.
"Hold it there, Cassie," Connors ordered and they all stared up at her butt on the screen. "Where did that image appear in the campaign?" Cassie flicked to the layout and pointed out the place where the mere shadow of her own buttocks swam alluringly in the depths of the champagne. She stood there in front of the screen pointing at the utter revelation of herself, feeling her silky slacks clinging to every curve and crevice of her bottom.
"Yes," Connors mused out loud. "It's all becoming very clear to me now. I see...I see...."
"You gotta agree that you're never gonna see a more beautiful tush than that," Scotty muttered and Cassie would have whacked him with the pointer had she dared when she shut off the projector. Heaving an inaudible sigh of relief she slumped down into her chair and quivered with tension.
Silence descended on the room while they waited for some signal from Connors who sat steepling his fingers judgmentally and contemplated everyone's future. Harrison, the V.P., stared grimly up at the screen. He not only wanted this account, he needed it! With it his black sheet would look impressive. Without it there would be some lay-offs. It was a risky campaign, but it would work if Connors had the moxie to recommend it to his management.
"Promising...." Connors articulated at last.
"Any problems?" Harrison queried accommodatingly.
"I need some time to think about it," Connors responded his gaze drifting from the screen to Cassie.
"Well let's break for lunch," Harrison offered. "I've got reservations at The Hancock. Cassie will join us," he finished.
'Crap!' Cassie thought. That meant her presence was mandatory and this would be another long boozy lunch hour and a late evening catching up on the day's work. Two hours later she sat disconsolately at their table on Ninety-Fifth Floor of the Hancock Building and glanced at her watch. This luncheon was becoming as endless as the combers rolling in off Lake Michigan to the Chicago shoreline below. For the moment she could take a mental break from the desultory talk and the equally steady flow of martinis. The effort of trying to be charming to Connors who had gone off to the john with Harrison was eating up her day and her energy.
Apparently her presentation seemed to have gone well, despite her utter discomfiture at the end, probably the best she'd made in her first year at the agency, and Conners had certainly paid close attention. He'd certainly seemed impressed, nodding and smiling agreeably as they'd discussed the campaign over lunch. But there was so still no commitment. She didn't know whether she had made the sale or not, and this luncheon hadn't seemed to bring matters any closer to a conclusion. Instead she had been increasingly aware of Connor's focus upon herself rather than her creations. It had been distracting at first, and now it was annoying. She was grateful for a few moments alone to compose her self.