Writing Wednesday – No Manual for Love

I had a complete hell of a week, last week.

Every so often, I’m sure it’s just not me, things just go from bad to worse during a week. I was like a walking grumpy zombie. (That was so not a pun related to the television show trust me.) I was on no sleep, stress, and lots of people stupidity. I won’t go too much into detail. It was just a long week. I’m usually a very “all smiles” type of gal and so it’s weird when I’m doom and gloom. *derp*

So, this is why I definitely didn’t do a Monday post. I’m trying to shoot for a 1 post a week goal. I’ve been doing well on that. I kind of went a little fast posting 2 a week. I’m still trying to figure out this blog thing.

With all the good stuff out-of-the-way ^_^ here’s an unfinished story for Writing Wednesday. It’s called No Manuel for Love. I think this was a nice side project that I wanted to start because I was writing on something else. It was a nice distraction. I still have the concept of the story in my head and would love to write on it some time. It’s a fantasy/romantic comedy type I had planned. I don’t want to get too into it, but I guess it should have a little introduction.

Enjoy the unfinished read!

No Manual for Love

Summary:

Nicole 3666 doesn’t need love. Love, is just a silly four-lettered casualty of a word. It’s not essential for her lifestyle. It’s not even in her programming.  Then there’s Forrest Beau. He’s a big shot from Headquarters that’s come to shake up her working life and he’s exactly as conceited as the title gives. So then, why this sudden installation of warm feelings for her new work nemesis? He’s human for goodness sakes!

.01: High-Heeled Fury

She walked with purpose down the long corridor. Her heeled feet rushed with each stride. They were capable of going longer, but the company issued knee-high grey skirt kept them encumbered. The issued blazer was also unbuttoned, in her haste, and the white undershirt clung so tightly across her breasts that you could now see the outline of her lime green lacy bra.

The undershirt was almost downright see-through. Its distractive outline caught many of her male co-workers by delightful surprise. Most were unable to think, let alone move out of the way, as she walked her warpath. The men that were slow to respond received a huff whenever they collided with her. On the cusp of things—they were lucky bastards.

She turned down one of the different hallways glancing upwards at the signs pointing in directions to parts of the company in big, bold, and black letters. It only took her a quick second to acknowledge the right one in darkened letters.

MARKETING DEPARTMENT.

The arrow pointed left. So, that’s the way she went.

She continued following the arrows down the maze of turnings, going this way and that, getting ever closer to her destination. It was quite the trek from where she usually works to where she was now. The long walk was taking a toll on her pores. Perspiration was seeping through them on her forehead. The sweat stuck runaway hair strands together along her brow. She brushed a hand across, to break up the rally of tendrils, but only more bunched together. It was a losing battle, but still one that needed to be fought. A woman’s fury can always be disrupted by a minute of vanity. Being able to storm somewhere with anger and look good was such a pleasantry.

In retrospect, it was a very lost cause. The company hair standard of a smooth, but classy, bun was in complete shambles. The woman’s hair was already naturally curly and the sweat coming from her moisturized scalp was causing tension on the strands. The torture from the morning straightening all lost as each began to curl at whim. The tossing of her head to and fro aggravated it even more.

Still, she played the warring game between hair and forehead for naught. A nuisance, as it may be, it was a welcome distraction from her infuriating thoughts.

“Oh…that bastard…I told him…I told him!” she yelled angrily from the ball of emotion in her gut. People stared at her as she hurriedly walked by. She gave them all a dangerous growl and they looked elsewhere.

She continued to constantly look at her surroundings until it soon became recognizable through the red. Now she was finally able to walk from memory. Until there, only mere steps away, was where she wanted to be.

With fury ablaze, she threw the glass doors open to the marketing department’s office.

“Where the fuck is he!” she screamed at the top of her lungs when she entered. The door banged with such a force against the walls that it boomed through the entire work room of cubicles. Heads began to pop up with fright as they eyed the loud intruder. It was almost hard to tell if it was from the sounds of the door that jolted the room or her loud voice.

It got their attention nonetheless.

She scanned the room with gusto when no one spoke to her. She stomped her foot and yelled the same question. This time a lone solider came forth with his arms extended as to soothe the lipstick beast.

“Now, Nicole, calm down,” The man said gently, gazing around for some kind of help from his colleagues. None dared a glance his way. They graciously continued with their work, pretending the scene was not happening.

“Where. Is. He?” Nicole irately asked. She did not acknowledge the man with a glance but continued her scan of the room, looking for her main target.

“Umm…you know…I think he’s…” the man stuttered nervously when Nicole took a step in his direction. When she did her very well-endowed chest pressed against him lightly. He kept his eyes upwards, feeling the awkwardness of her bust touching him underneath his chin. He twiddled his fingers behind his back and took a deep breath. “He might be at lunch?”

Nicole stopped her eye hunt and gave a manic chuckle. She glanced down, as she was much taller than the man that dared the brave fight of confronting her, and gently touched his shoulder.

“Now, now…Chuck,” she continued to laugh, peering at his name tag. She may not know him, but any-and-everyone knew of her. By the looks of it he might be new to the department. “You can come up with a much better lie than that. Can’t you…Chuck?”

Chuck gulped looking into Nicole’s violet eyes. He stammered to even form a cohesive sentence. Nicole gave him a second to gather his thoughts but then became very impatient. Her smile drooped and the hand on his shoulder got tighter.

“Well…he…I…”

“Chuck?” Nicole said sternly, her demented smile appearing again. She lifted her hand, which gripped Chuck’s shoulder, and patted the spot. She did it with so much force that Chuck’s knees trembled under every pat. When she gave one last good one, Chucks’ legs buckled and he found himself face first between her breasts. He immediately stood back up as quick as he could, hoping he wouldn’t get a lashing. Nicole gave an eerie cackle when Chuck fell into her chest and popped back up. “I can make your life a living hell right now, you do know that don’t you?”

“Y-yes I know bu-bu-but…he’s…” Chuck could only speak softly. He looked behind him for help, again, but it was a fruitless effort. He might as well be invisible.

Nicole now gripped both his shoulders and gave him a shake.

“If you fucking say “he’s at lunch” again I’ll fucking kill you,” Nicole warned in a sweet tone as she shook Chuck. She stopped suddenly when she caught a flicker of blinds in the closed room office behind Chuck. Her eyes narrowed and she took a very deep inhale.

She looked back down at Chuck, the man nearly too frightened to even continue standing, and stood upright taking her hands off the little man’s shoulders. Chuck leaned back immediately cowering with his arms crossed, left over the right, defensively in front of his face.

“Please don’t hurt me! I could lose my job if I tell you!” Chuck exclaimed. He squeezed his eyes shut and braced himself for impact. When nothing happened he dared to open his right eye. Nicole, with her arms crossed, was looking behind him.

“Don’t worry Chuck your boss already gave himself away,” Nicole tsked slowly tilting her head.

Chuck stood and quickly looked behind him with worry, only to find his boss was nowhere in sight. Before he was able to react, tightness around his neck stopped him in his tracks. His tie was being wound in Nicole’s hand and it was constricting around his throat. He weaved his fingers between his skin and the silk of the tie to diminish the pain. It only doubled. Chuck’s fingers and throat were now caught in the clutches of the tie. It was his mortality hanging in the balance with hope that his fingers could cushion the blow—or not snap in half.

“And you gave away your boss as well Chuck,” Nicole whispered closely into Chuck’s right ear, pulling him toward the closed office.

Chuck gasped for air. He had no choice but to follow Nicole’s lead. He stumbled about and tried to keep the pace because she was quite fast. It took him great pains to keep up. If he didn’t the pressure on his neck kept his feet speedy. It was good motivation.

Between the sloppy footsteps, wheezing gasps, and hasted pulling, Chuck was relieved when he stood at the door to the office. He was thankful when Nicole’s grasp lingered on the door knob and from his tie. When she turned the knob and pushed the door struggled to move.

“Give me the keys, Chuck,” Nicole spat. Chuck was busy softly rubbing around his throat. He moved his head in different directions as he checked for damage in the glass window of the office. Nicole gazed at Chuck with fiery eyes holding her hand out in front of Chuck’s face for his attention. “Give. Me. The. Keys!”

Chuck moved backwards, falling over his own feet.

“I…can’t. I don’t have any keys.”

Nicole turned her feet outwards, making her heels touch one another. As she did, she turned towards Chuck with her hand out and beamed.

“Chuck, you know I don’t need your permission to get this door open, right?”

Chuck nodded.

“It’s usually common courtesy to ask right?”

Chuck nodded again.

“Well, I’m doing my part asking for the keys. I’m really trying to keep my cool and not cause any damage, but you’re making it very hard for me, Chuck,” Nicole breathed. She pinched her temple and squeezed her eyes shut to relieve some stress.

“But…I…can’t…”

“If I break the door down it’s going to come out of your paycheck,” Nicole implied, spitting the words through her clenched teeth. She watched the hesitation on Chuck’s face and rolled her eyes. She was fed up with all the bullshit. She turned forward gripping the door knob in her hands and forced the door open. The metal door began to buckle. The metal creaked loud, high-pitched noises. The top of the frame folded inwards creating a very visible dark V-shape down the middle as it sang in agony of being strained open. Everyone in the office now stood and watched the spectacle. And all were unable to have the courage to stop the assault.

Nicole stopped suddenly, letting go of the knob. She held out her hand, once again.

“Key me, or I promise this door is coming down.” When the key was not in Nicole’s palm in less than a second she had to add, “These doors do cost thousands…”

Before Nicole could finish her sentence, Chuck had dug through his pockets and produced the key into her palm. He could only stand motionless while waiting for any praise.

“Thank you, Chuck. You may go,” Nicole said proceeding to stick the key in its proper place, the scurrying sounds of Chuck’s shoes becoming distant. The key snuggled against the tumblers in the lock as Nicole turned it. The door clicked and it easily pushed open. It made a horrible clamor when it did, but stayed well put together given its treatment.

Nicole stomped inside and slammed the door shut behind her. She was enveloped in darkness; except, for the minor light from cracks in the blinds and the semi-broken door. She instinctively reached for the light switch and flipped it. When it didn’t come on she flipped it back and forth a couple of times before laughing.

“Oh come on. Are we playing these games?” she lightly dragged her tongue across her upper teeth. “Let’s not do this. I might accidentally stumble over you a couple of times before I find you. That’s not fun for anybody. Well…for me it might be, but maybe not for you.”

Nicole clapped her hands and rubbed them in silence.

There was a shifting sound that caught Nicole’s attention and she smiled evilly. She walked in the direction of the noise, bypassing through the mess on the floor with ease.

She didn’t need the light to see in the dark.

She stopped at the only office desk in the room and gave it a harsh kick with her heeled toe.

Suddenly, a light brightened the room. It blazed gloriously from a lamp atop the desk. The rays illuminated only a portion of the office, but it was enough. A portly man came from behind the desk. His mouth projected a nervous smile and his eyes were almost unseen.

“Ohhh…Nicole. Was that you? I swear I had…” Nicole kicks the desk again jarring the man as he stands up. Papers on his desk started to avalanche and he braced them with chunky fingers. “..no idea.”

Nicole reached behind her grabbing at the rolled sheet of paper tucked in her skirt. The flimsy material unrolled as she presented it to the big man. He pursed his lips while squinting at it. Nicole let it go. It floated angelically on top of the desk, visible and clear under the lamp light.

“Uh…” the man sighed. He let his eyes linger on the sheet of paper.

Nicole, enraged, lifted her arms in the air and brought them down ferociously on the desk. Everything on top shook and so did the rest of the office. The man grabbed the top of the desk for support as the room bounced.

“Nicole, before you get upset…” the man started off holding his hand up in a “calm down” fashion.

Nicole smacked his hand immediately and the man hissed pulling back. He shook it in the air trying to dull the pain that was working its way through the extremity.

“Goddamn, Nicki I think you broke something,” the man said, using her nickname, casually gripping his poor fingers. He touched each gently and winced in pain after touching his pinky.

“Fuck you, Larry! I would break more than that if I could get away with it,” Nicole steamed. She folded her arms and stared Larry down. He looked away reaching for his desk chair, with his good hand, scooting it closer so he could sit down. He wriggled his portly figure into the chair and got comfortable.

“What is this shit?” Nicole asked pointing down at the sheet of paper.

Larry feigned ignorance while he began to coddle his poor hand.

“What is the big deal? It’s just an ad for the company. That’s what a marketing department does. We make ads to get people interested.”

Indeed, it was just an advertisement for the company. It wasn’t that, that was bringing Nicole to a boil. It was what it was saying. And Larry knew that good and well.

“Not for this we don’t!” Nicole pointed down at the italicized lettering at the bottom. Larry gave it a little look. “It’s still in the test phase, Larry! Even headquarters hasn’t deemed it safe. This is fucking false advertisement!”

“It’s not false…if it’s true,” Larry idled. He cleared his throat looking between Nicole and the floor. “Headquarters sent a memo late last night to up the usage of the service. And for this branch to even do that we need more customers to test it. Thus, we needed to advertise it.”

Nicole gasped and frowned with the information given.

“What do you mean late last night? I didn’t even get…”

“Because we made sure when you updated you…didn’t…receive…” Larry coughed and barely said, “…the memo.”

“What!” Nicole yelled. It scared Larry so bad he immediately stood.

“We knew you’d go off like this once you found out. Someone was supposed to tell you, but I guess he chickened out. But, I swear to you we weren’t hiding it, just didn’t know how to break it to you,” Larry spoke. He grimaced at the throbbing in his hit hand and held it close to his body, plopping back down into his chair. “Now you either have to live with that or go and talk to someone with programming. I can’t help the fact the higher ups want to press this.”

Now this was Nicole’s time to lose her words. She clamped her mouth shut. She balled her hands into fists and squeezed them harshly, not realizing her nails had dug through her skin until liquid dripped down one of her fingers. She brought both her hands up and tsked when she saw the blue pouring out of her hand.

“Jeez, Nicki , don’t bleed all over the place. Calm down,” Larry suggested. When Nicole gave Larry a look he nodded to the roll of paper towels on one of his messy tables. Nicole shifted through the messy floor and grabbed a bunch, pressing them in both palms. “This is why you are the last to know about any changes we have because everyone’s so goddamn afraid of you. At least you aren’t doing what you usually do?”

Nicole asked, “What do I usually do?”

“Well…you know,” Larry said pointing at Nicole’s chest, his eyes following. “You inflate so much you’d be ripping by now.”

Nicole took the next minute to look down at her chest. Her shirt was wound tighter than it had been before she was angry, but it wasn’t ripping. And it should have by now. It was one of her bodily reflexes for when she got angry. It would be an inflated bust of gigantic proportions. She was so mad that she had forgotten her predicament.

“Boss made me get a custom fix. I had become a liability.” Nicole fidgeted. She was a bit embarrassed at being recommended for a fix to control her inflation. It wasn’t really her fault that people got into work accidents while gawking at her breasts when they were half the size of her body. Just because they were unable to stay focused did not mean she had to be punished. While looking back at her chest she felt a ping of sadness that they weren’t bigger. It was almost like a part of her had died.

“They should have done a custom fix for your temper instead,” Larry said matter-of-factly. The tone of his voice reminded Nicole of what she initially came for.

“How can they do this to us?” Nicole said calmly as she pressed the paper towels softly. Each of the square-shaped bits soaked up the blue that ran out of her hand.

“Well since the upgrades, the service has become safer for users and the…”

Nicole frowned looking at Larry.

“You know…” Larry shifted uncomfortably in his chair.

Nicole patted her hand with the paper once more before peeling them off. The openings, from where her nails dug in, were now healed over and unblemished. She rolled the paper towels between both her hands, looking for somewhere to dispose of them. Larry pointed to the right of his desk at the trashcan and she threw them away there.

“It’s not safe. It’s safe for you guys, the fucking users, but what about us? I know three of us that have succumbed to vicious personality changes, right here in this facility, after doing this and they were unfit to continue their given duties. They were so bad off that it’s going to take months, to a year, to be configured to their proper selves. There has to be more cases than just ours in the past two months since it’s been on trial phase.”

“That’s nothing but bad gossip.”

“It’s not gossip!” Nicole said passionately eyeing Larry behind the desk.

“Look, don’t yell at me. Go to headquarters. I’m just doing what they keep telling me to do. Get more users. With all our marketing research from the trials it has been expanding and becoming popular. The users are enjoying the experience of being…you guys. They love the fantasy aspect of being a…”

“Genetic?” Nicole finishes Larry’s sentence blandly. Larry just nods and Nicole scoffs while pacing.

“I’m the fucking liaison of the company, Larry. If this isn’t safe for us then I have to raise a fuss. I’ve raised a fuss over little things before, but this is huge. We’re letting the users invade our minds, our persona and become us. It’s invasive and on top of that unpredictable so far. It needs more testing before being allowed on the program. I should have been notified immediately about this change. Do you know how fucking stupid I looked in front of my staff when one asked what this service was?”

“Didn’t they get the manual when it went on trial two months ago? I thought all you had to do was scan it and its second nature.” Larry asked flexing his hurt hand. The pain in his hand had begun to subside. It must have been because he had been continuously massaging it to dull the pain.

Nicole stopped pacing.

“Fuck, Larry, it’s a triiiaaallll,” Nicole dragged out in a whine. “We have volunteers for trials. They are the ones to get the manuals on the new specifications of the programs. Not everyone gets it.”

Realization suddenly dawned on Nicole and her jaw dropped.

“Shit! I have Genetics in their program right now not aware of how to use the new service let alone know what the hell it is.”

Nicole scowled at Larry, who pushed himself back to the wall. She reached down, picking up whatever she could get her hands on, and with all her might chucked it at Larry harshly. Larry tried to protect himself as the heavy object came his way. He blocked the object from bashing him in the face, but it smashed his previously pained hand. He shrieked in agony as his pinkie bent backwards.

Nicole smiled happily, for once, when she landed the bullseye.

“Oh you humans, easily able to get hurt, so glad I’m not one.” Larry angrily looked at Nicole. “Don’t give me that look you deserve it. And I swear if any of my staff gets hurt because you didn’t give me that memo I’m going to bring this up to G.A. You know how they just love a good suing scandal when it involves Genetics.”

Larry just held onto his hand painfully. He was well aware on how bad The Genetics Association could get.

“I don’t know why I always get the brunt of attack when I had nothing to do with this decision.”

Nicole shrugged.

“Well you take it like a champ, they should be raising your pay for dealing with such a violent Genetic like me,” Nicole spoke as she rushed to the door. When she pulled the knob it made that awful creaking. “Oh and your employee, Chuck, owes you a door.”

As Nicole left the office, Larry leaned back in his chair reaching with his good hand at one of the drawers of his desk. Once he got a hooked finger in the grip he pulled. He frowned a bit at the contents lurking in the bottom of the small space. He reached in wrapping his hand around the glassed bottle. The dark liquid inside sloshed around filling the shape it was being held in.

Larry sat the bottle on his desk and stared at it deep in thought. He eyed his bent back pinkie and was in disbelief that he even forgot about it when his door noisily opened.

It was Chuck.

“Sir! I formally give my apology and will gladly resign from my position as of right now. I was unable to uphold your orders,” Chuck uttered politely with a raised voice. He stood stiffly in his suit, arms at his side, and a low hung head that looked away. He bent over in a good planked angle shouting, “I humbly beg for your forgiveness!”

Larry stood, eyes still focused on the lone bottle on the table.

“Chuck?”

Chuck straightened and enthusiastically said, “Yes sir!”

“How about you…drive me to the hospital,” Larry sighed getting his things together. He reached for the bottle, while slowly maneuvering around his desk. He tugged the neck of the bottle gently between his fingers and once in his grip shoved it into Chuck’s chest. “Brave man you were today.”

Chuck fumbled with the bottle briefly.

“S-sir?” Chuck questioned supporting the bottle in his arms.

Larry just laughed looking back at his underling, noticing the red around Chuck’s neck.

“All that face the she beast and make it bare the battle wounds. Often times they would not dare to stay around such a vicious monster. The one’s that continue to stay, those, are the ones that gain the most respect,” Larry informed Chuck. Larry gave Chuck a little pat on the back. “Wear your battle wounds proud son.”

Slightly confused, Chuck respectively nodded to his superior. Larry gave a half smile at the lad.

“Now let’s get me to the hospital before I pass the fuck out.”

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