Making Him SquirmbyRedHairedandFriendly©
Author's Note:Charlie and Tonya were first introduced in the Humor/Satire story "Led by His Cock" - I encourage you to read this tale if you want to get a more detailed viewing of their back story. It isn't necessary, but it is a fun read and explains why the title fits this story. Feel free to vote and comment, but mostly I hope you enjoy this work. ~ Red
The tension was easy to read. Her body language spoke volumes though her smile gave one the false sense of security. Tonya kept the grin plastered on her face as she looked over the prospective candidates that had been called in for an interview. One man's appearance had caught her off guard; she was surprised that he could still hurt her, especially since she had only met him once, conversed with him for maybe an hour, and had never seen him again after he left with her -- then -- best friend, Heather.
Heather's face popped into Tonya's head. A tall woman, blonde and adorable. Her hips were perfect, her smile warm and bright; her eyes - stunning. Heather presented the world with something society had taught her was necessary to get what one wanted in life. It was after the incident with Charlie that Tonya had finally decided to accept the ugliness of her friend. She'd not spoken to Heather in over two years; the last time had been the morning after Heather had left Charlie's apartment. She had wanted to meet for coffee and bagels. Tonya had told her how hurt she was, and how she was done being abused by not only men, but by Heather herself.
Now the man that had made her wake up to reality sat beside several other men that had barely given her a once over. It hurt more coming from Charlie because he hadn't recognized her when she shook his hand. He had sat across from her, talked to her, laughed with her, joked with her, paid her attention -- but all of it had been a ploy to snag another woman. Tonya shouldn't have been surprised the man had forgotten her, but she was and the pain stung.
"Mister Charles Keith."
She stared at him again, almost willing him to remember. He smiled, the same smiled he had used on her a couple years ago. She frowned. "This way," she told him, before turning away and having him follow her into another room, where she could have a one-on-one interview with him.
Tonya tried not to sway her hips, as she felt his gaze on her ass. She hadn't changed much; she still was heavier than her once-friend; her hair was still the same brunette color it had been when she entered the bar; her eyes were still brown, though she had picked up a pair of reading glasses -- aging seemed to have crept up on her and her eyes were now affected. Once inside the room, she closed the door and offered Mister Keith a chair.
He took it and she claimed the one behind her desk. Again she looked him square in the face and waited. He squirmed in his seat; licked his lips nervously and waited for her to speak. Tonya frowned, shrugged her shoulders and began to conduct the interview for Vice-President of Miralo and Conmorate Investments.
"I see you've been working in finance for almost twenty years."
He sat up straighter. "I have, almost right of high school really. I worked part-time with our area accountant, handling taxes when tax-time came around, and then quickly moved through college -- gaining degrees that would make me more marketable and knowledgeable."
She scanned his resume. "I understand that you're seeking new employment because you are looking for a higher seat on the totem pole." Her brow rose slightly. "Not happy with the simple things in life? Looking for something more showy? Stunning? Exotic?"
The bitterness was easy to read. Tonya mentally chastised herself for her hostility but said nothing to ease the stress now evident in the room. "I am just hoping to broaden my horizons. I guess that could be seen as looking for something more," he paused, "exotic. The money is certainly not the reason I'm here. If you look at my resume you'll notice what your company is offering me is grossly under what I am making now. However I am not ever going to be given the position of VP with my current employer -- there are too many family members with their hands in the cookie jar."
Tonya had to agree. "So tell me about Charlie Keith -- beyond what this tells me." She tossed his resume onto the desk. "What makes you so special and the other guys -- just another bunch of lackeys with degrees?"
"I'm single," he said with a lopsided grin.
She eyed him with contempt. Inwardly she thought, "I'm not surprised."
"Because I'm single I can be counted on not to have to leave for sick kids, or a needy wife."
"Needy wife?" Her voice was laced with disgust.
"Well, I don't mean needy. I'm just -- well -- you know -- I'm easy when it comes to scheduling my time. I'm able to get along with just about anyone and I am quick to pick up on people's moods; I'm a great judge of character and..."
Tonya laughed. "Are you?"
"Am I what?"
"A great judge of character and able to pick up on people's moods?
He stared back at her. "I am. I can tell right now that you don't like me. Not sure why, but the minute I stepped into the lobby you were gunning for me. Your mood is sour and scornful. I assume you've had a bad day or something you ate didn't agree with you. I'm hoping I've misjudged you, but you seem like a woman who has her mind set on making me feel like an ass for just breathing."
She tucked a strand of hair behind her ear, laid her pen on the desk and leaned back in her seat. "Yep, you're a good judge of character and you pick up on people's moods. Good for you."
Charlie rose from the chair, shook his head and turned to go. "Have a nice day Miss Waterside."
"Tonya," she said.
"Excuse me?" he asked, as he looked back at her; his hand reached for the door.
"My name is Tonya Waterside."
"Oh, well have a good day Miss Tonya Waterside."
She watched him open the door and leave, confirming what she had already known. He didn't remember her at all. Tonya swallowed the lump in her throat, took a sip from her water bottle, and smoothed her suit down with her trembling hands. She hadn't changed that much -- he simply hadn't cared enough to recall her.
The day ended with no one from the lobby filling the position her bosses were looking to fill. The only man who was exactly what they were looking for was the one man she refused to call back for a second interview, this one being with the President himself. She left the resumes on her desk with Charlie's placed on top, along with a post-it note for her secretary to destroy "Mister Keith's" and file the rest.
Two days passed before he was back in front of her and looking down at her sour expression. "Surprise, surprise," he said.
She couldn't help but notice the condescending attitude he projected. "Mister Miralo will be with you in a moment, take a seat over there."
He smirked; she glared. "You weren't expecting me to get the call were you?" he asked. She said nothing, pretending instead to focus on the ledger in front of her instead of the man who had darkened her path. "I bet you threw my resume in the trash the moment I walked out the door. What happened, someone with a bigger ego than yours find it? Saw my potential and made the call to have me come in."
"Something like that," she muttered. In fact, she had made the decision. She'd gone home that night, and knew that to deny Charlie a second interview, because of her own personal feelings, would hurt the company. He really was the best man for the job. She'd called the office, reached Matt from maintenance and had him remove the post-it note from Mister Keith's resume.
"Well, whatever -- or whomever it was that saved my credentials I'll be sure to thank them -- if I ever meet them. You wouldn't tell me who, would you?" he asked.
"Not on your life," she admitted.
Tonya got the call to escort Mister Keith into Miralo's office. She did so, again noting the intense feeling of him checking her out. She frowned. He certainly didn't have any reason to. Heather wasn't there, in fact no gorgeous woman was within ten feet of them, so he didn't have to pretend interest in her. Once she had passed Charlie over to Miralo she returned to her desk and busied herself with work.
It came as no surprise to her with two hours later Miralo was walking with Charlie, shaking his hand and congratulating him on joining the team. She had known it was going to happen, but now that he was officially a co-worker her stomach was churning with dread. "Miss Waterside will go over the final details as far as insurance, benefits, retirement, and of course she can answer any questions you may have," Miralo said before shaking Charlie's hand again and taking his leave.
Tonya opened a drawer in her desk and handed Charlie a file. "It's pretty self-explanatory. If you have any questions, my number's inside."
He opened the folder, and thanked her. "Are we okay?" he asked.
Both of her eyebrows rose in confusion. "Why wouldn't we be?" she asked.
"Well, the other day it was apparent you didn't want me here and now we'll be seeing each other every day and..."
She smiled, lifted her hand and waved off his concern. "I'm the one with the problem. Not you. You just - well -- you remind me of a man I had a bad experience with once and," she shrugged her shoulders, "I'll forget eventually -- its pretty obvious he has."
He tilted his head. "You remind me of someone too, but I just can't place it. Well, here's to a fresh start. No hard feelings?"
His hand was extended toward hers. She took it, felt the warmth and the firmness of his grip. Her lips wore an uneasy smile. "No hard feelings," she whispered, stared back at him and again tried to make him see who she was.
Once more he left, dismissing her -- just like he had when he had left her at the bar and made off with the bombshell all men wanted to fuck. "
"Always the sidekick," she mused once she was left alone.
Weeks turned into months and Tonya found herself relaxing around Charlie. She accepted that he was not going to remember her. It had hurt, but she had built a wall and she knew he wouldn't crumble it. She showed him respect, but when it came to her personal life, all inquires he made of it she ignored or answered only with the bare minimum of details.
One afternoon Mister Miralo approached her, Charlie in-tow and both stood at her desk staring at her for a long period of time. Tonya looked up. "Is there something in my teeth?" she asked, feeling unsteady under their mutual perusal.
"Charlie and you are heading out of town."
Tonya stared at her boss over her reading glasses. "Excuse me?"
"I'm sending him to Kauai and he's going to need someone to do some footwork for him," Miralo said.
"You're sending me to Kauai, Hawaii -- to play gopher?" Tonya asked, somewhat stunned.
"Well gopher isn't really an attractive word, but," Miralo shifted in place, "yeah."
"I told him, you wouldn't be interested," Charlie piped in.
"What? Shut the fuck up," Tonya answered, then quickly covered her mouth. "I'm so sorry," she told her boss, who was smirking at her with an easy grin and raised brows. "I am perfectly willing and capable of being Mister Keith's gopher while suffering the accommodations and surroundings of Hawaii."
The two men chuckled. "Good. I'll leave Charlie to fill you in. I assume you'll make the necessary arrangements in regards to finding a temp to fill in for you while you're gone, as well as leaving me with information on how to reach both of you. Your business expenses of course will be covered -- just use your company cards and you know the rules as far as personal expenses go."
"Yes sir," both Tonya and Charlie simultaneously answered. Miralo left and Charlie pulled up a chair so that he could go over the details with Tonya. His proximity made her uneasy, but the thought of vacationing in the garden isle made her too giddy with excitement to care.
"You're sure you're okay with this?" Charlie asked. "I've sensed us getting along better, but if you really hate the idea of being my assistant than I'm sure I can find someone else."
Tonya spun around in her seat and faced him. "Charlie Keith if you take this opportunity away from me, I'll never, ever, ever forgive you and I'll make your life here at Miralo and Conmorate so miserable you'll have wished you'd gotten a degree in shoveling shit!"
He leaned back and chuckled. "Okay! I'll leave you to do the planning and I'll take care of things on my end. I've got to find someone to house sit. We're going to be gone a couple weeks and I have a dog, some fish, and a couple of cats that need taken care of."
"You do not," Tonya said.
"Yeah I do."
"Please. You don't have pets. You live in an apartment -- a bachelor's pad, with a revolving door. Don't lie," Tonya told him.
Charlie stared back at her. "Well, I did a couple years ago. Now I have a small house outside of town. It's not much to look at. I prefer spending my money on my toys and I admit I like expensive clothes. But I do have a dog. His name is Henry. My cats are Junie and Bonnet and the fish -- well they don't have names. I just call them fish."
Tonya blinked in surprise. "I'm impressed," she admitted. "Here I thought you were the typical bachelor. A woman in every city and all that."
He chuckled. "I was, but that was a long time ago."
"Cool. Well, I guess you better get your house in order. I've only got a cat, but my mom lives close by so I'll just have him take up residence there."
"A cat? What's his name?"
"Umm....Bob," she told him. The lie rolled off her tongue easily. She wasn't about to admit she picked up the sorry excuse of a cat two years ago and named it Charlie, after the sorry excuse of a man she'd met the week before.
"Have a great rest of the day," Charlie said as he picked up his coat and headed out of the building; Tonya immediately returned her attentions back to their upcoming itinerary.
Tonya stared out the window of the jet as it circled the runway. Her excitement was evident as was the fear that always appeared whenever she had to fly in a plane. Landing and taking off were the only things that frightened her. Once in the air she was fine and had no qualms at all about traveling so high off the ground. Charlie had done his best to ease her discomfort, telling her jokes and sharing with her the antics of his various pets. In fact she had almost forgotten that he was an ugly part of her past. She had relaxed, enjoyed his friendly banter and had even found herself warming up to his casual flirtations. She read nothing into his demeanor. She knew he had no romantic interest in her. He'd made his choice a long time ago. It was up to her to let it go.
The plane landed smoothly, just like she knew it would and just like Charlie had promised. He gathered their carry-on luggage, allowed her to lead him out of the plane, down the ramp and into the airport, where together they went in search of their remaining luggage. A man, holding a sign, greeted them and soon they were traveling toward their accommodations.
The Saint Regis Princeville Resort mirrored the beauty of the island. Water exploded from fountains; the gentle breeze rustled the native trees and flowers. The resort was full of travelers -- some on business, most there for pleasure. Tonya had worked in both for her and Charlie. She had called him repeatedly to make sure he was okay with the off-hours activities she'd planned; he had assured he was and thanked her repeatedly for making him a part of her mini-vacation. Tonya had thought nothing of it. It was her job to see to all things involving the business and that meant its VP. When she pressed the itinerary into his hands she had apologized for including him in so many of her activities, but had promised he was under no obligation to join her and there was plenty of down time for him to discover the island on his own.
After checking in and being shown to their rooms, one next to the other, and both with mountain views. Tonya unpacked her suitcase. Their arrival day was one that would be simple and relaxing. Neither had wanted to get off the plane and rush to any meetings. Tonya had arranged a light lunch to be brought to their rooms, followed by some down time and then she had arranged for them to take in a comedy act with drinks and supper during the show. All in all she knew it was a generic experience, but one that would provide them with some fun without wearing them out by the end of the night.
The door was knocked on and Tonya answered, gave the attendant a tip and closed it behind him. She knew Charlie was next on the man's stop and heard the knock on his door quickly follow. A light Mediterranean fare graced her palette and she melted into the flavors and savory concoctions. Tonya rubbed her tummy, giggled at herself and left the meal full and satisfied. She changed out of her business attire and into a skirt that moved gracefully as she walked around the room. A pink blouse that hugged her large breasts added to her ensemble, followed by a pair of sandals, and sunglasses. When she was ready, she glanced at her watch and moved to open the door. A knock resounded from it, just as she reached for the knob. Tonya opened it and smiled at Charlie.
"You look nice," he told her. His eyes traveled slowly over her full figure. She blushed, pushed him back with her palm and closed the door.
"Whatever," she said, before pulling her sunglasses open and placing them on her head. "I'm no model," she answered, checked the lock on her room and turned to face him.
Charlie shrugged. "Models are over-rated."
"Really?" she asked.
"Yep. I've dated models. Most, not all, are plastic."
Tonya chuckled. "Oh, are they? Who was the last quote-unquote model you dated?"
He laughed, offered her his arm and walked down the hall, eventually reaching the elevator. "She was this blonde, a real looker. Legs that wouldn't quit, a smile from ear to ear. Eyes that sparkled; her ass was round and full. Her breasts perky and ready to be -- well -- she had everything going for her and it was all wrapped up in a delicious bow."
The elevator opened and they stepped through. Tonya could already see Heather in her mind. She had been just as Charlie had described. She was everything Tonya was not. "What happened?" she asked. Heather had wanted to share the experience with her, but Tonya had broken off their friendship before she could.
Charlie pressed the "L" bottom and soon they were moving down to ground level. "I took her home and as she started to peel away the layers of clothing I saw the real woman."
He shrugged his shoulders. "She was very fake and when she left that morning, all I could think about was --." Charlie stopped and stared at Tonya. "Holy fuck," he muttered, just as the doors opened.
She stared back at him with a look that was unreadable. "We're here," she said as she stepped around him and into the hall that would lead them to the lobby of the resort. When his hand closed in on her elbow Tonya wasn't surprised. She let him spin her around. He stared into her brown eyes.
"Fuck Tonya, I'm sorry."
The sincerity of his voice pulled at her. Tonya sucked in her lips, nodded her head in understanding and swallowed the lump in her throat. "It's okay," she told him. He stood there, holding her with his eyes and his hand.
"No wonder you hate me."
She chuckled halfheartedly. "I don't hate you -- at least not anymore," she admitted.
"Well you should. I was an asshole. I saw her and didn't see you. I've regretted it from the moment I looked back and you were standing there. I knew she'd done this before, and I didn't care. I was thinking with one head and not the other."