Alice was super nervous about her review. All of the interns had an exit interview…some of them were hired after the fact. Being in Paris was nerve-wracking, because she was terrified that she would do something wrong and she really wanted to work with Polly. There was room for Pollyto hire an assistant, and she wanted that to be her.
She went to a reception in Polly’s place, where there were sumptuous hors d’oeuvres and creative cocktails. Polly was having dinner with the client that they had met with earlier, Alice guessed that their families had been friends.
Some people knew the latest music artist, Alice knew the newest artists. When she noticed a photographer that she admired, she took a sip of her drink and tried not to shake. Her friends laughed at her when she fan-girled an artist, but this was her groupie base. In the art world.
Seeing Fiona Méret, made her pause. Aside from her stunning photographs, Fiona herself was stunning. The first time Alice walked past her to get a cocktail–a rye whiskey concoction mixed with Lambrusco–she almost had a nervous breakdown. But it was Fiona’s hand on her shoulder that soothed her.
“Come on in honey,” she said pushing Alice forward.
Alice smiled and got her cocktail, which she sipped faster than she normally would have. For her second one, she again walked past Fiona who had never moved away from the bar. Fiona who this time, fanned away from the rest of the crowd to invite her in.
“Come on honey,” Fiona welcomed her like it was her own home. “Another one for the pretty girl,” she said to the bartender.
Alice blushed, she knew that Fiona liked women, she had read an article about her. But she was not expecting the particular nervousness she felt when she walked past her.
Fiona was gorgeous, and additionally charismatic and charming as evidence by all the groupies around her. Alice felt flattered that she went out of her way to allow her in to get her drinks. And at that close range, she saw how striking Fiona was. Everyone around her, looked at her like she was otherworldly. Like she had come down from the stars.
Maybe there were stars in her eyes as she lingered, just a bit where Fiona was. She took a soft sip of her cocktail, and observed her, closer but she was not quite near her. Fiona took out her phone, to take a picture, of a lacy decoration on the wall.The decoration was lace, somewhat Victorianesque in its look.
Alice moved closer. Without words, she and Fiona had a full conversation.
“So you know I am a photographer,” Fiona said to her after they had started actually talking. “What do you do?”
Alice did not tell her she was an intern, she just told her where she worked.
“Well cool, I am going to be there next week. Here’s my card.”
Fiona’s skin whispered against Alice’s palm as she handed her the card. Suddenly Alice was not thinking about Polly’s review of her, or her exit interview.
She was thinking of Fiona Méret’s cool card burning a hole in her hand.
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louise dahl-wolfe photo via duck duck go images