Marketing exec Gabrielle Flannery isn't what you'd call the outdoorsy type. But after an embarrassing incident with a potted plant leaves Gabrielle revealing more leg than a Thanksgiving turkey, she decides it's time to reassert herself. Even if it means going head-to-head with marketing golden boy and the office Hottie McHot, Dell Kingston, over an outdoor gear account '
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September 30, 2006
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Excerpt from Just Dare Me... by Stephanie Bond
"SO WHO DO YOU think she slept with to get that promotion?"
Gabrielle Flannery tore her gaze away from the striking blonde in the front of the room, for whom the entire department had gathered for a send-off on a Friday afternoon, and frowned at her coworker, Tori. "Courtney has always been nice to meýand to you."
Tori snorted. "Yeah, because we catered to her like the servants we are."
Gabrielle shook her head at her friend and strained for a better view of the cake-cutting from where they stood behind a ficus tree in the crowded conference room. "Well, I, for one, am happy that Courtney is moving on to better things," she said, keeping her voice lowered.
"Yeah," Tori muttered. "A six-figure salary, a gargantuan expense account, a new company car and a corner office. Score another one for the cool kids, while we dweebs are still batting zero."
Gabrielle shifted uncomfortably at being included in the dweeb reference. "You're being unkind, Tori. We each contribute to the bottom line of this firm, we each have our own accounts." Her pulse picked up a notch as devilishly handsome Dell Kingston stepped up to say a few parting words about Courtney.
"Right," Tori said behind her hand. "Don't you think it's strange that all the high-profile, exciting products like sex-enhancement drugs and European cars go to people like Courtney Rodgers and Dell Kingston, and people like us get stuck with toilet paper and dog food?"
Gabrielle craned for a better view, although admittedly, the rugged profile of Dell Kingston was of more interest than the decorated sheet cake. "They have seniority," she murmured absently.
Tori scoffed. "Both of them came in two lousy weeks before we did, Gabrielle, and their careers are light years ahead of ours. Look at us," she said, swatting at a branch. "They're in the spotlight, and we're standing in a tree, spectators to their success."
Gabrielle bit into her lip, watching Courtney and Dell, the Barbie and Ken of Noble Marketing of Atlanta, smiling at each other as if they shared an intimate secret.