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A Perfect Bloom 11 – Alex Ankarr
But he knows, quite well, what Siles the head gardener would think, of his rationalisations. And he can’t prevent himself from giving a shifty glance about, side to side and peering over the tops of the bushes. They’re on a raised bed, and Cory is, truth be told, not all that tall, and in fact slightly diminutive. But then he reaches out, slyly, to snap off one long elegant stem, one with perhaps the most beautiful rose of all on the nearest bush to him, at its swaying, bobbing head. In fact he takes a pair of nail clippers on a keyring out of his pocket, and he’s just neatly, efficiently snipping at the stem, when a voice speaks behind him.
“You really shouldn’t be doing that, sir. According to Mr Siles, at least.”
Cory doesn’t swear very often. He was nicely brought up and privately educated. He makes a special exception just this once, though, and the expletive he comes up with is blush-inducing and really regrettable. Especially considering the company he’s keeping.
This isn’t the first time he’s been up close with Sam, the new intern employed under the rehabilitation of ex-convicts scheme that the company has rather proudly and publicly set in motion. But the first time – stumbling into Sam’s first interview – he wasn’t up quite this close. And was too busy talking to dear Mrs Mugwort – and being dazzled by the very fact of Sam’s physical beauty, up even that close – to try to talk to him.
Since then, it’s been snatched glimpses at a distance, shy and furtive peerings whenever Cory has spotted Sam somewhere about the premises. He hasn’t tried to take any further advantage of the fact of his access to any area of the business, and command of any employee, to engineer further encounters, to try to get to know Sam any better.
He hasn’t, frankly, been able to work himself up to such scheming. Really, he’s just been too shy. It’s pretty embarrassing to have to admit it, even to himself.
And now, he’s up closer than he’s ever managed. And – well – this is as close as he’s ever been, to a guy he really barely knows at all. No, not barely, even. He doesn’t know Sam, at all. Although, apparently, still well enough to be told off by him, for stealing roses.
© Copyright Alex Ankarr 2014
No unauthorised reproductions allowed. All rights reserved to the author. No inspirations for characters drawn from real-life individuals, no resemblance to real individuals intended.
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