1 The White Collar Strip Show

Today's the big day.

It's been a year since I moved in with my mother to get away from everything. And today, I have my first job interview. After talking to my best friend, I chose to wear a fitted grey suit with a white button-down and black pumps. I wear my hair down and put on just enough makeup to make my eyes pop. The position I'm applying for is to be a movie star's assistant, and I want them to know I'm taking the position seriously.

I was always taught fifteen minutes earlier is on time, on time is late, and late means you're fired. This especially applies to the entertainment industry. I planned to be there an hour in advance just in case something happens. Luckily there was nothing but traffic, so I have time to get some coffee. It doesn't give me energy, but it just feels right to drink every morning. There's a famous coffee shop across the street from the building where my interview is.

When I walk in, the atmosphere is warm and smells of fresh coffee and pastries. The barista is friendly and talks me into getting a croissant along with my latte. While I'm waiting, I see an attractive man walk in. About 6 feet tall with hair dark as onyx, broad shoulders, and gorgeous big dark brown eyes. He gives the baristas a warm smile, and they start making his drink without him ordering. Must be a regular here. After I grab my latte, I turn to leave and bump into a hard body. Coffee is spilt all over me, and you can see through my shirt!

I don't hear him as he apologizes profusely. Tears fill my eyes as I think of what just happened. I think to myself.

"What am I going to do? I don't have time to go home and change. I can't show up to my interview like this. Think, Astra, think!"

Right as I'm about to give up, I hear a smooth baritone say ...

"Hey it's going to be ok."

I look up at the person who bumped into me, and it's the regular, looking at me with kind eyes.

"Are you ok?"

I look him up and down and realize not a drop of coffee got on him. The best part is he's wearing a white button-down.

"Yes this could work," I think to myself. There's still hope after all. "Give me your shirt," I tell him as I start unbuttoning it.

"Excuse me?" he exclaims.

"I said give me your shirt."

"You can't just take someone's shirt."

"Listen here, I have fifteen minutes until I have to be at the first job interview I've had in over a year, and I can't blow it! I desperately need this job, and I don't have time to go home and change. So please, I'm begging you please give me your shirt."

"Fine," he says in an exasperated voice.


"But at least let me go to the bathroom. I don't want to strip in front of all these people."

I look down and realize half of his body is exposed. We both turn away from each other, our faces becoming redder by the second. After he comes out of the bathroom, he's wearing a jacket but since it's a suit you can still see part of his sinewy body.

"Let me see your hand," I say as I grab a black marker from my purse.

"What more do you want? I already gave you the shirt off my back. Literally."

"I asked for your hand, not your hand in marriage," I say as I take his hand.

After writing down my name and my number, I take the shirt from him.

"Thank you so much! I really appreciate this. Call me, and I'll bring you your shirt back, I promise!" Looking down at his hand, he sees what I've written down.

"Astra Cyrene, huh. You have given me the strangest morning I've ever had."

While he's thinking to himself, his manager walks up to him.

"I have to say, Will, that's got to be a new record for how fast a girl has tried to take your clothes off."

"Oh shut up, Keller," He says as he grabs his coffee.

"Wouldn't it be funny though. If the interview she was going to is to be your assistant?" his manager asked.

"What are the odds of that actually happening? Let's go or we'll be late."

Standing in the bathroom mirror while touching up my makeup one last time, doubts are racing through my head.

"What if they notice something's wrong with my outfit? What if they notice something's wrong with me? What if I'm not good enough for this job?"

I look at myself in the mirror and tell myself.

"Remember what your therapist said. You are beautiful, you are strong, and you are worthy. You've got this". I whisper to myself. Straightening my outfit one last time, I leave the bathroom with my head held high.

Walking across the street, I reach a modern skyscraper that reads Callista Talent Agency. As I look up, I take a deep breath one last time, and say to myself "You've got this! Believe in yourself." When I get to the door, I see a stylishly dressed woman behind me. I open it for her, but suddenly she stops and hands me her coat.

"Be careful when you hang that up. It cost more than a year of your salary. While you're at it go and get me a large quad skinny mocha macchiato, upside down, extra hot, extra drizzle."

I try to tell her I don't work here yet, but it's to no avail she just walks off. Standing there, puzzled, I think to myself, "How odd."

I go to the receptionist and give him a warm smile and hand him the coat.

"Hello. I'm here for an interview for the assistant's position."

"Great! Just so you know, there are a few forms to fill out. You can take a seat and fill them out over there and bring them back to me when you're done! My name's Dillon, let me know if you need anything!"

I thank him and take a seat. As I fill out the forms, I notice there's a non-disclosure agreement for the interview. I bring the forms back and ask Dillon about it.

He looks around and whispers, "One of the stars is going to be present during the interview. He wants to personally pick out his assistant, but don't tell anyone."

I give him the zipped lips sign and go back to the sitting area. I take a moment to check out my surroundings. Everything about the building has a contemporary style from the architecture to the furnishings. Everything is either black, white, or silver. The only exception being some plants that give it a pop of green. I wonder how they keep it so clean?

Looking at the people next to me, they seem so posh. I wonder if I'm qualified or worthy of being here. I take a deep breath and straighten my back as I think to myself "Even if you don't get chosen it's a step in the right direction. You've got this!"

"Astra Briana Cyrene," I hear someone call out.

As I walk past Dillon, he winks at me and whispers, "Good luck."

I give him a wink and grin to myself. I think we could be good friends if given a chance.

"They're just beyond this door. Good luck!" I thank the woman and brace myself to walk in. I put on my most charming smile and walk in the room.

"Welcome to Callista Talent Agency. Thank you for coming today. I'm Keller Ellis, it's nice to meet you."

"Pleasure to meet you," I say while giving him a warm smile. I hear the door behind me open.

"Sorry I'm late, I had to change into my spare clothes."

I turn around to greet the person, and the colour drains from my face. It's the hot guy from the coffee shop. Keller barely chokes back a laugh.

"William Wang, allow me to introduce you to Astra Briana Cyrene. She'll be interviewing to be your assistant," a wicked grin develops on William's face. He holds out his hand with my number on it.

"It's a pleasure," he says slowly. Like he's savouring a fine wine.

I take his hand and tell him, "The pleasure is all mine."

"Have a seat and we'll get started."

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