Getting to know him, that was Matthias’ plan. He promised not to mix work and play, so he wasn’t going to bring it up unless Zach did. Matthias never once broke a promise and he was not going to start. There were always other ways to get what he wanted without having to go back on his word, and he pride himself in living by that motto.
After Zach had agreed to Matthias’ dinner invite, they met at a famous sidewalk stall in the city. Matthias arrived first, so he got them a table and went ahead with the order. When Zach finally arrived, the food had already sat for a couple of minutes.
“Sorry, there was a delay,” Zach said.
“No worries. I went ahead and ordered. I hope you don’t mind,” Matthias responded as he gestured for Zach to take a seat.
It was a cool and cloudless night. The road by the sidewalk was dwindling in cars while the stall greeted more hungry customers. There was nothing much to expect on a typical Saturday night.
“No, of course not,” Zach replied.
The two ate silently for a while as they attended to their grumbling stomachs. When the urge to refuel had stopped, Matthias asked, “So, how was your day? Didn’t see you after lunch.”
“They made me do the kitchen. It wasn’t fun,” Zach answered with a chuckle.
“Ha, well, only tomorrow to go.”
Zach nodded as he held a thoughtful gaze. Matthias wanted to ask, but decided that it would be too intrusive at their level of relationship.
“So, where are you from?” Matthias asked.
“Around here. You?”
“I’m a country boy. My parents live out of town.”
“You visit them often? Must be tiring to drive up and down.”
“Nah, no time,” Matthias replied with a shrug.
“They must be proud though. You’re very accomplished for your age.”
Matthias felt the compliment came out rather strange, but he answered Zach anyway.
“Thanks. Things just fell into place.”
“How’s it like working for big shots?”
The strange feeling had not left him. Matthias had observed Zach at Skypeak and him being vocal did not feel right. Was that the true Zach or the Zach with an agenda?
“A headache. Too many secrets to bear.”
“I guess so. Wilhelm Group is too big to not have secrets.”
“I don’t work directly for them, I-”
“But you could. I mean, there’s room for you to work your way up.”
Matthias nodded as he watched Zach closely. Zach lowered his gaze and Matthias said, “Yea, but not yet.”
Shortly after that, they discussed about Skypeak before calling it a night. On his way home, Matthias could not help but wonder if Zach agreed to dinner in search for something. Perhaps Matthias could dig it out of him, but he was not curious enough to do so. Besides, what secret could a man like Zach have that would benefit him?
The following day, Matthias decided to clock in earlier. He had a lot of windows to cover and he wanted to attempt at cleaning them all. It definitely sounded silly being that determined, since it would be an impossible task, but the prize was worth it.
As Matthias made his way to the janitors’ lounge, he bumped into Guinevere. She was dolled up from head to toe, as though ready for tea with royals.
“Good morning,” Matthias greeted.
“Good morning! Could I have a word with you, before we start this horrible day?” Guinevere asked.
Matthias laughed with a nod, and Guinevere hooked her hand around his arm. Leading him in the opposite direction, Guinevere said, “I’m interested in doing some investment. How’s this Friday night sound?”
“The coming Friday? I’ll have to check my schedule first.”
“Great,” Guinevere replied as she let go of him.
“If you don’t mind me asking though, why invest with me? Your fiancée is-”
“I would prefer to work with you.”
“Ah, I see,” Matthias simply replied. His sixth sense for strange human behaviour was kicking in again.
“And, I would appreciate it if you don’t tell anyone,” Guinevere added.
“Don’t worry, your secret is safe with me.”
Guinevere gave him a wide smile before gesturing to where they came from. On their short walk back, Guinevere started her complaining and by the time they arrived, Matthias completely forgot about her request. It was only during lunch that he was reminded of it again.
Matthias sat with Zach and Jodie in the staff canteen, when they were later joined by Guinevere and Richard. It was unusual for all of them to be at the same table, but miracles do happen.
As Matthias hurried to finish off his meal at the arrival of Richard, he found himself choking when Richard gave him a smack on the back.
“Sorry. Didn’t realise you had food in your mouth,” Richard said.
“I’m done,” Matthias replied as he got to his feet.
“Hold up,” Richard quickly responded and handed him an invite. “You’re invited to our class reunion.”
Matthias took a look at the card before asking, “You too?”
“It’s says graduating class. You didn’t even graduate,” Matthias pointed out.
The three at the table fell silent as they found the scene entertaining.
“Well, what can I say? Jessica invited me personally. She also asked me to confirm with you. You remember Jessica, right? The girl that said you-”
“I remember Jessica,” Matthias interrupted.
Matthias wanted to leave Richard hanging, but with three extra pairs of ears listening, he might as well give Richard an answer. The reunion was on the coming Friday and he knew Richard told him at the last minute on purpose. Having little time to think, Matthias had to decide.