FLAT TIRE AND AN ENCOUNTER IN THE LOCKER ROOM
The day, the work day, that is, was about finished. Sissy was one of the last in the plant, but that was not unusual for her. She was 30 years old, but she was also the company's COO. It was a matter of pride for her. She'd come up with the company, so to speak.
She was out on her own by the time she was in her late teens. The only alternative that she could see, at that time, was the alternative that too many of her girl friends had chosen: a boy friend, and a baby, babies, by the time she would have been 18. She didn't want that for herself, to remain in the pressure cooker of the poverty neighborhood and give in to its ways.
The company had been her first step out for herself. He Momma was already gone and the only 'home' that was left was with the latest step father, no great prize by any means. There was never a father for her, it had always been her Momma and a parade of boy friends, friends and step fathers.
She left. So that at 17, Cicily, Sissy, Truman was on her own. She got a job with the company, one that allowed her to take care of herself. It wasn't a great life for a while. Her money was always rationed but she was making it for herself.
She began the process of night school education not long after she started with the company. Her determination made her a first class, straight A student. With her education, her abilities at the company increased. She got better positions. She kept her studying and ended in her current position: COO of Crain-Weber Industries.
She lived in a lovely apartment; she took good care of herself, exercising to keep fit and was fairly brilliant at her job. Crain-Weber was doing well, very well, and Sissy Truman was doing well along with the company.
But now the work day was finished for her.
It was raining. As a matter of fact, it was raining exceedingly hard, pouring in fact.
She had her trench coat. She had her umbrella. Her car was not too far out in the lot. But, in addition to those things, she also had a flat tire!
Sissy stood in the rain and just looked at it.
She was a first class COO! She was great at her job! She was the 'go to' person at work for all sorts of people and tasks. But she knew crap-all about changing a tire.
"Oh damn!" she said in a soft voice, knowing that she was stuck.
She stood. She stared. She thought but got no closer to thinking about how she was going to get it taken care of.
She was just beginning the process of thinking whom she might call to come and get her out of the situation, when someone approached from the side, from the building.
"Ms Truman," a voice said, startling her just a bit.
She turned and saw Ray Windham, one of the workers in the packing and shipping department. Ray was about 5 years younger than Sissy, she estimated.
"Oh, Ray!" she said.
"You go over there by the overhang of the building," he said. "Let me take care of this."
"Oh, that's so nice, Ray!" she said, "I have no clue about what to do here or how to proceed."
"In good hands!" he said, getting her keys and going to the trunk to start taking care of the tire.
He had on a rain slicker with a hood and went right to work on the tire. She retreated to the shelter of the overhang on the building and watched. He was quick. He knew what he was doing and he got the new tire, a full sized one that came with her car, on in what seemed to her to be a relatively short period of time.
He also, despite his slicker and hood, got completely soaked in the process. He walked back to where she was waiting for him in the shelter of the building and he handed her the keys.
"All done!" he said smiling at her.
"Ohhh!" she said, and without a further thought, launched herself at him for a hug.
"Now you're getting wet!" he said, to cover both his embarrassment at liking the hug so much and his pleasure at her show of affectionate gratefulness.
Sissy giggled and said: "Not nearly as wet as you are!"
He laughed. "Might make me grow!" he said, and they both laughed.
"Do you have clothes here that you can change into? I don't want you getting sick from this!" she asked, quite concern.
"I don't know how to thank you properly," she said, softly and, almost instinctively went for her wallet. "Here, let me give you something for your trouble."
He was silent and she stopped the gesture. He said softly: "That's okay, Ms Truman. I have to go now and get some dry clothes."
She stood there watching him leave and the more she thought about it, the angrier with herself she got for offering to pay him, 'tip' him for fixing her tire. She was upset about it enough that, without a thought, she went into the building, where he'd gone a little before. She never thought that it was the men's locker of the plant or anything like it. She was only intent on making up to him what she then perceived as a gross gaff, an insult.
She entered and looked to the left and saw him. Then she was rooted to the spot. He was naked! He had a towel that he'd just used to dry himself with and looking up, saw her staring at him.
Her first and most immediate thought was: "He's gorgeous!"
When she first saw him, and her hand sprang to her mouth to hold back a kind of outcry, his back was turned to her. His naked butt was nothing less than amazing. When he turned around, still drying himself, he saw her.
The look that he gave her, realizing at once how disconcerted she was, was one of barely suppressed humor. There was a kind of grin on his face.
"Oh dear!" she said. "I ... I, uh, wanted to come and apologize for insulting you by offering you money, and now ... now I've, uh, made it worse by walking in on you!"
He chuckled then obviously enjoying the situation.
"I have to warn you, Ms Truman..." he began.
"Sissy please!' she said almost automatically.
"Sissy," he said with pleasure, "I'm going to drop the towel now and dress."
She was staring; she knew it, and was having a hard time breaking her eyes away. He had broad shoulders, wonderful chest muscles, what is called a 'six pack', and thigh muscles that she could see. She could also see, from the way that the towel was being held, one hip that was naked. It all had her very uncharacteristically rattled.
"I'm, uh, sorry!"she said, "I mean about being so insensitive and insulting you but also for, uh, breaking in on you."
"No problem at all, Ms Truman ... Sissy," he said then, and with a kind of a noise in her throat, she turned on her heel and left, almost at a run.
"Ray Windham," he said to himself, after she was gone, "That was marvelous! Might just cost you your job, young son, but it might also be worth it just to see the look on her face!" It left him chuckling.
For Sissy it was a struggle, a real struggle to try to get out of her mind the vision of his naked ass, and then his torso. She sat in her car, after she'd fled from the building and said to herself:
"Magnificent! Just magnificent."
IT CONTINUES: AN APOLOGY AND THE LOT AGAIN
The next day at work both Sissy and Ray had a hard time getting their encounter of the previous day out of their minds. Finally, she gave in, having decided that she did indeed owe Ray a true apology and rang for shipping on the intercom.
The message was simply given to him that he was wanted in Ms Truman's office. He knew immediately that he might be in trouble over yesterday's encounter, she was, he reasoned, after all, the boss, and his 'connections' might not help him in a spat with her.
But as soon as he went into her office, passed in by her secretary without waiting at all, he was at ease. He was at ease because he saw clearly that she wasn't. It was all that he could do to keep from letting a huge smile broaden his face.
"Ray," she said, trying to get her emotions under control. "I think that I owe you an apology for yesterday."
She paused and he said softly: "No, not really."
But she held up a hand and said: "Please, I need to say this, while I have the courage. It was wrong of me to offer you money. It was a stupid, shallow thinking thing to do. For that I apologize!"
She took a deep breath; he didn't interrupt her this time. Then she went on: "And I don't know what was on my mind, when I followed you into the locker room. I did want to say that I was sorry, of course, but whatever I was thinking, I have no idea.
He couldn't help himself then. He grinned.
She only stared at him for a few seconds and broke into a grin herself. "Don't you dare!" she said, through a giggle, which surprised Ray that she, the big boss giggled!
"I'll remember that!" he said to himself.
"What?" she almost shot back at him then.
"You giggle!" he said, "I like that."
She giggled again. "You're not making this easy!" she said.
"Didn't know that I was supposed to!" he said with a grin.
She put her head in her hands and simply said to him: "Out!"
He laughed and said: "Yes, Ma'am, and thank you for the apology. It's accepted."
She watched him go and said to herself, once he was gone: "Way to go, girl! You just melted in front of one of your workers! Giggling! Get a grip, is what I say."
She ended giggling again, and giving herself a solemn promise to think about this.
.... There is more of this story ...