The Story Of Us – Chapter 42

Knock! Knock!

“Come in!” Vic yelled.

“Vic,”

Vic lifted up his head. “Ken, ah, you’re here already,”

“What’s up? Why are you calling me over today?” Ken asked as he took his seat in front of Vic.

“Oh, I need to take your body measurement,” Vic said.

“Body measurement?” Ken asked.

“Yeah,”

“Why do you need to take my body measurement?” Ken asked.

“For my job,” Vic said.

“Huh?”

“Well it is actually for me to keep track. Whenever you get a job, the respective people will need your body measurement and sizes from me so that they can prepare your clothes,” Vic said. “And if you were to do a fashion show, I will refer the clothes that the designers have passed to me with the measurement I have and then match accordingly before assigned it to you or other models,” he took out a file and spread it open in front of him.

“Oh,” Ken said.

“Yes. So… stand up. I will measure your shoulder, and then chest, and then waist, hips and then…” Vic said as he headed to Ken with a measuring tape.

“Whoa, you are so serious,” Ken said, as he stood up.

“I have no time to joke around. I’m so busy,” Vic placed the measuring tape on Ken’s shoulder.

“Are you always like this?” Ken asked.

“Well, I am a professional and usually I am serious, but I know how and when to play or relax even when I am working… and also it depends who I am talking with. Such as someone like you who are so close to me. But unfortunately, not this round. I don’t even have time to eat. It’s all because of the gala dinner in 3 weeks,” Vic said, as he then jot down the number on the document in the file.

“Hmm… what file is this?” Ken asked.

“This is your file. Still new. Soon it will pile up like the other models’ files,” Vic said.

Ken’s eyes widen up. “WHOA. You mean I have a file like this?”

“Every model does,” Vic said. “A famous one will be thicker,”

“Why? You mean they changed sizes more often than the others?”

“What kind of statement is that?!” Vic said. “How come a famous model will change sizes more often?!” he puts the measuring tape on Ken’s waist now.

“Stress? Eat a lot or lose appetite so that results to changing sizes?”

“OF COURSE NOT!” Vic said. “It’s just that they accept more jobs. And I keep track of what job they do, where, when, which customer, and many more,” he wrote the number down on the file.

“Ohhhh…” Ken said.

“You are going to hate this. Spread your leg slightly. I need to measure your hips and each of your leg,” Vic said.

“Ah?” Ken asked.

“I am going to put the measure tape around your leg and measure it next to your ‘stuff’, so just be professional, dude!”

“WHAT THE…”

“I am professional. Now it is up to you if you can…”

Ken gently spread his legs slightly and rolled his eyes. “This is damn awkward,”

“Like you have a choice,” Vic rolled his eyes.

“I can do myself, that is if you want me to,”

“I don’t trust other people’s reading of measurement,” Vic said as he wrapped the tape around Ken’s leg.

“Why do you have trust issues?” Ken asked. “It is just a number!”

“Well, let’s see. If I ask you, or everyone else gives me their measurement, they will, or might give me a number that makes them happy instead of the real number that they should have provided me. If I ask a female model to give me their waist measurement, they will say it is 29 inches, or even 27 inches when it is actually 30 inches. An inch will make a lot of difference for a dress and outfit. They don’t understand this. Sometimes they said, ‘I will be back to 27 inches in the next few weeks’ so that is what they give you. And sometimes some really didn’t know how to use the measuring tape, or wrap the tape on the wrong place of the body, thus giving the wrong measurement. With all these reasons, it is best I measure it myself using my own tape as I know it is accurate. I also know where and which part of the body’s measurement that I needed. If the models are going to slim down as claimed, then only I will update my data. If they are getting fat, then I will update my data also. It is best that way,” Vic suddenly tightened the measurement tape on Ken’s right leg and Ken jolted a bit.

“Please be careful with your hands!” Ken yelled at Vic. “And that damn tape!”

“I have done this for years and I know how to use this! Don’t worry. I will make sure I won’t interrupt your capability to perform on bed!” Vic said. “And also making small little babies along the way in your life!”

“URGHHHH…” Ken exclaimed.

Vic then went to the other leg and does the same to Ken. Ken also jolted a bit as he rolled his eyes at that very awkward moment.

“Alright…” Vic said as he writes down the number of the document.

“Done?” Ken asked.

“Not yet, now measuring the ankle,” Vic squatted down again and puts the tape around Ken’s ankle.

“You do this to the female models too?” Ken asked.

“Measure? Yeah,”

“I mean the leg… next to…”

“Yes, only when they are wearing pants. If they are wearing skirt on that particular day then I’ll do another day. It is compulsory. Unless you wear skirt then I will measure that the next round,” Vic grins at Ken.

Ken glared at Vic.

After done measuring with the ankle, Vic rose to his feet.

“Done?” Ken asked.

“In a hurry?” Vic asked as he jots down the measurement.

“Not really, I was just…”

“Asking, I supposed?” Vic wrapped the measuring tape around Ken’s neck.

“What are you…”

“Put in a finger inside the tape,” Vic said.

“Ah?” Ken asked.

“I am measuring your neck,” Vic said. “You think I want to strangle you, I supposed?”

“Oh, err…” Ken did as he is told. “Why… do I need to put a finger here?”

“It is my style to do measurement of the neck, with a finger in it. More breathing space expected,” Vic said, releasing the tape and writes down the number on the file. “Alright, now I am done,” Vic walked to his seat.

“Oh… so you don’t need me here anymore, I supposed?” Ken asked as he sits down on the chair.

Vic lifted up his hand and looked at his wrist watch. “You can sit here for 20 minutes, or you can walk around and come back here in 20 minutes,”

“20 minutes?” Ken asked.

“Yeah,” Vic said as he writes some stuff in Ken’s document. “You can walk around, sit in the lounge, grab a cup of coffee and get used to the office here… and then come back in 20 minutes,”

“Why 20 minutes?” Ken asked.

“By the way, where is Rainie?” Vic asked.

“She said she’ll sit at the lounge,” Ken said. “Why do I have a feeling that you knew she is here?”

“Of course. You always bring her along with you. Besides, this is her office. She is free to walk in and out of this place, and Winnie is working here too, that is if she wants to meet Winnie,” Vic said. “Why not just go and see Rainie. She was attacked in the lounge the other day, according to Winnie,”

“Attacked?” Ken asked, immediately stood up. “What do you mean?”

Vic quoted with his fingers, “‘Attacked’,” he looked at Ken. “Winnie told me she found Rainie in the lounge with Scott the other day. Rainie was yelling at Scott pretty loud and grabbing everyone’s attention. Looks like she is prepared to do it and she does it intentionally,”

“Ah?”

“She didn’t tell you? I thought you both shared everything,” Vic said.

“Not that detailed…” Ken said.

“Well, that is what Winnie told me,” Vic said. “Scott is basically looking for a chance to reconcile with her. So, you need to take your chance,”

“Are we going to talk about this again?” Ken asked. “My fingers almost cramped when I typed about this topic on the chat messenger the other day. Are they all futile now?”

“What I am telling you is to take care of yourself and do whatever is appropriate. I don’t know how she felt for Scott, and I don’t know under what circumstances she might accept him,” Vic said. “And don’t be overconfident. These things are not in your control, and furthermore you are not doing anything therefore even if it is in your hands, it will NOT be in your hands anymore. She might give in. Someone as pushy as Scott might win the battle. I don’t know. All of these are my assumptions. If you refuse to do anything, don’t come crying to me complaining how Scott snatched her from your hands. And we’ve talked about this before as well so I really do not want to repeat it again. Be thankful you are not next to me that night we chatted because I really want to strangle you at that point of time. And don’t make me heated up like the other day or else you won’t be that lucky this time since you are just within reach,” Vic said, and then continued scribbling on the document.

Ken smirked. “I don’t want to repeat it either,”

“Just go out and mingle with other models. Go out and take care of Rainie, just in case Scott come after her again. Just come back here in…” he lifted his hand up. “17 minutes,”

Ken looked at Vic being very serious at his work. He then slowly turned and walked heading towards the door.

“I really don’t understand how you get Julia back then,” Vic said.

Ken turned back and looked at Vic and Vic is still writing.

“Because I believe Julia will accept me. And even if she will not, I don’t mind losing her as a friend. I have faith in myself. This time, I don’t have faith in myself, and most importantly, I don’t want to lose Rainie as a friend,” Ken turned and opened the door, and walked out.

Vic lifted up his head and looked at the door.

**********

“Hey Rainie,”

Rainie lifted up her head. “Hey, Ken. You’re done?”

“Not really. I will have to go back to Vic’s room in 17 minutes,”

“Oh?” Rainie asked.

“Yeah. Don’t know what he is up to,”

“Then what did he do to you earlier?”

“Taking measurements,” Ken said.

“Ahhh… I see,” Rainie smiled. “Every model needs to do that,”

BEEP!

“Hold on, received a SMS,” Rainie said, taking her phone out. “It’s Barbie,”

“Oh, anything urgent from Barbie?” Ken asked, as Rainie reads the SMS.

“Nah, just some random talk,” Rainie smiled before she hits the reply button. “She is asking about the appreciation night,” she typed on the phone.

“Oh, I see,” Ken smiled. He then looked straight as Rainie is busy with her phone. Ken looked at a guy looking at him (Ken), before he walked to Ken. Ken frowned as he looked familiar.

“You are Ken?” the guy asked.

Ken stood up in respect. “Yes, hi,” he extends his hand.

“So you are the KEN,” the guy folded his hands on his chest, not accepting the handshake.

Ken looked at him. “You…”

“The guy whom you have taken the job from,”

“Brandon, you came late for the job. It is not Ken’s fault you lose that job,” Rainie stood up on her feet after tucking the phone in into her pants.

Brandon. Ah… now that is why he looks so familiar.

“I’m sor…”

“Don’t apologize, Ken,” Rainie interrupted, and at the same time extended her hand out as in to stop Ken from apologizing.

Ken stopped, and he looked at her.

“It is not your fault, you don’t have to apologize,” Rainie said. She then looked at Brandon. “Brandon, come on. He is being offered your job, he did not go over and ask them to replace you with him. Just accept the truth and the fact, alright? You were fashionably late for hours. You can’t blame Mr. Ying for being mad at you,”

Brandon looked at Ken.

“If you could not accept this, then let’s bring this matter to Mr. Xavier,” Rainie said.

Brandon turned to look at Rainie.

“I am sure if this incident of you confronting Ken has reached to Mr. Xavier, it is not going to bring you any good,” Rainie added.

“I am sure it has reached,”

All three of them turned to the source of voice and finds that it is Mr. Xavier, as he walks towards them, with his hand clasped behind him.

“Mr. Xavier,” all three of them called.

Brandon’s eyes strayed very soon after.

“Brandon,” Mr. Xavier said, looking at Brandon.

And Brandon looked at him, “Mr. Xavier,” he called again.

With a serious tone, Mr. Xavier said, “Did you know I guaranteed your appearance with Mr. Ying for that photo shoot?”

Brandon lowered his head.

“That is how much I trust you,” Mr. Xavier said. “But what did you do in the end? You did not come on time and makes Mr. Ying mad. Did you know Mr. Ying might sue us because of you? Do you know what will happen that time? We are going to suffer losses because of you, and most probably a lawyer and court letter too,”

“I’m sorry, sir,” Brandon said.

“Don’t apologize to me. Apologize to Ken,” Mr. Xavier said.

Ken and Brandon looked at each other. Now the situation is so damn awkward.

“It is okay…” Ken said, didn’t want to create more problems between him and Brandon.

Well, they have already started as colleagues on a bad ground now…

“Because of you, Mr. Ying engaged Ken whom eventually creates a great outcome for the photo shoot and causing Mr. Ying to be extremely happy about it. And I believe because of that, Mr. Ying didn’t sue us for whatever you have done; and that potentially means Ken saves our company. I could have dropped you straight away for being so unprofessional. You are supposed to thank Ken for saving you. I have not come to talk to you about how angry I was with you, but yet you dare to meet Ken and questioned him about taking over your job, which at the first place, is your fault?” Mr. Xavier said.

Ken turned to look at Rainie, he really wonders if the situation is as bad or as serious as Mr. Xavier had just said? Rainie turned to look at Ken, wondering what’s with him looking at her, and Ken turned his head to look at Mr. Xavier again when Mr. Xavier resumes talking again.

“And Ken is new here. I know what he did and his capability despite he is new. You know I am very fair in all of these. So if anyone found to say or do anything unnecessary to damage the reputation of Ken, I will back him up. He will be the only person that can damage his reputation. Just the same as you, Brandon. You are the only person that can damage your reputation,”

Brandon lowered down his head.

“Respect other people as how you want them to respect you. I leave the past as it is. I didn’t bother to bring up about the matter of you being fashionably late because it no longer matters. So I don’t want you to question Ken about that because it is your fault,” Mr. Xavier said.

“I understand, sir,” Brandon said.

“Great. Now…” Mr. Xavier said, turned and looked at Ken, “Ken, are you ready? Let’s go into Vic’s room,”

“Oh, okay… sure,” Ken responded, after looking at his wrist watch. It’s time to go back to Vic’s room. But he is not informed about Mr. Xavier joining them. He wonders what is going to happen.

“Rainie, join us,” Mr. Xavier said, turning his head to look at Rainie.

The moment Mr. Xavier said that, Ken also turned to look at Rainie.

“Oh?” Rainie asked.

“Yes, involves you as well,” Mr. Xavier smiled at her.

“Oh. Umm… okay,” Rainie said. She looked at Ken as Mr. Xavier walked in front of them. “What is going on? I didn’t know I am needed in the office today…”

Ken looked at Rainie, “I don’t know, I wasn’t being informed about Mr. Xavier joining me and Vic… and you as well,”

“Hmmm…” Rainie said.

“I didn’t know my acceptance of the offer is going to make people unhappy,” Ken said.

“It does happen. They feel that you came to steal their jobs away. Don’t bother about them. You can’t please everyone. And you are here with your effort. Not anyone else’s,” Rainie patted Ken’s shoulder.

Ken smiled faintly at Rainie for her comforting words.

Mr. Xavier knocked on Vic’s room’s door.

“Come in!” Vic yelled.

Mr. Xavier opened the door.

Vic lifted up his head and upon seeing Mr. Xavier, he immediately stood on his feet, “Mr. Xavier,”

Mr. Xavier nodded in acknowledgement of the calling as he enters the room, and both Ken and Rainie followed behind. “Have you told Ken what this meeting is all about?”

“Not yet, I will do it now,” Vic said, as he looked at Ken and Rainie sitting down in front of Vic while Mr. Xavier makes himself comfortable at the couch at the side of the room.

Ken and Rainie looked at Vic upon hearing him saying that.

“Ken, as you have been informed, and as I have recommended to you to sit back, relax and wait for brands to come looking for you to don their outfit and brand for the appreciation night…” Vic looked at Mr. Xavier and smiled, and then he switches his sight back to Ken. “Your first brand is here today to talk with you about it. They have expressed their interest to have you to don their outfit for the dinner,”

Ken gaped. “First brand?”

Rainie smiled as she turned to look at Ken, for she is happy for Ken.

Vic smiled. “Yes. Well, you are free to say no or to contemplate. You don’t have to agree right now. You can leave your options open, but you need to respond by end of the week to allow people some time to do and make, as well as amend your outfit. I have told you before, these brands will come after you. This is the first, though I am not sure how many more is coming,”

“Wow,” Ken said.

“As for Rainie…”

Rainie immediately turned to look at Vic.

“…the brand is interested to sponsor your outfit too. And they are very interested to make a so-called matching outfit for both of you,” Vic said.

“So-called matching outfit?” Rainie and Ken reacted.

“Maybe matching colors, I am not sure. They told me that briefly but they will discuss it with you. At the end of the day, it will be up to you to decide if that is alright. If both of you feel that matching outfit is not right, feel free to express and reject. Rainie knew the procedures for all of these, and Ken, you are new in this, that is why I told you these right now. My recommendation is for you to ask for time to contemplate. Do not reject straight away,” Vic said.

“Yes, you can wait for another to come. All of them should be coming by this week,” Mr. Xavier chipped in.

“May I know what brand is this?” Rainie asked.

“G.A,” Vic said.

Ken and Rainie gaped.

“Isn’t that the same brand you…” Ken pointed at Vic.

“Yes, G.A signs a contract with Vic to sponsors Vic’s attire for the appreciation night as well as other events for many years now. This year, they are also interested to sponsor your attire for the same event. And for Rainie,” Mr. Xavier smiled.

“Let me emphasize that G.A is the one of the most reputable brands in this world,” Vic smiled. “It is an honor to be able to work with them, and to don their outfit,”

“Of course Vic, you wear their brand,” Ken said.

“Yes, and I am glad,” Vic smiled.

“Not bad, Ken, you have G.A showing interest to sponsor your attire,” Rainie mumbled.

“And for you too…” Ken said.

“G.A would like to custom made your suit and Rainie’s dress, they will ensure that it fits you perfectly and up to your requirement. They will do everything they could to get you to don their outfit. So, you can always negotiate with them. Don’t be pushy. Mr. Stevens is a nice guy,” Vic said.

“Custom made for me?” Ken asked.

“Yes,” Vic said.

“Wow,” Ken said.

“You are new in this, I am not surprised with your reaction,” Rainie smiled.

“I am new… I thought… I mean, I never thought I will be offered a custom made outfit from a top brand,”

“Because you are getting famous, Ken,” Mr. Xavier said. “All from the advertisement,”

Rainie smiled.

“Personally, what do you think about G.A?” Ken asked Vic.

“G.A is a popular brand. It is a good publicity for you and for the brand too,” Vic said.

Knock! Knock!

“Come in!” Vic called.

A guy opened the door.

“Mr. Xavier, nice to meet you here,” he said as he extends the hand to Mr. Xavier.

“Mr. Stevens!” Mr. Xavier stood up and grabbed his hand for a handshake. Mr. Xavier then turned and he looked at Ken, “This is Ken, and this is Mr. Stevens from G.A,” the big boss introduces.

“Hi Ken, nice to meet you in person,” Mr. Steven smiled as he extends his hand.

“Hi, Mr. Stevens,” Ken smiled as he accepted the handshake.

Vic smiled. He looked at Rainie and smirked. “Ken will take it,”

“How do you know?” Rainie asked.

“I just knew,” Vic smiled.


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