When Belle first walked into JLS, I will admit I did find her a bit annoying and thought her charm and positive attitude was just an act. But as I got to work closely with her, I am mystified by her sincerity and her being seemingly down to earth. She is also confident and is not afraid to speak her mind. On top of that, Belle is intelligent and focused and is willing to help others. She has especially been helpful to me with my various projects.
When she’s excited or passionate about something, her eyes glow and lights up a room and everything is all right. Yes I know that sounds corny but I truly felt that optimism particularly when I faced tough obstacles such as presenting my business plan to the head sales manager. And, as I continue to work with her, that positive spirit comes out even more .Her name definitely defines her. She is very beautiful both inside and outside. Before you get any ideas, we are just friends. (I am personally glad thought that she dumped Ben Adams cause he is a prick)
I would say that Belle has able to touch me in a way that no one else in this office has been able to and bring out something I lost within me so many years ago. She makes me feel like I could be a better person and not shut out everyone.
To show how much I appreciated her, I felt like I needed to do something for her. But I had no idea what to do. So I asked her closest work colleagues, Pippa and Lumiere. Lumiere suggested the usual chocolates or flowers. Pippa immediately counteracted those suggestions and strongly recommended that I get Belle something that relates closely to her interests. And then I knew just the thing.
“I have a surprise for you,” I told her after I took her out for dinner at the Omni Parker House (on the company card of course). “But you have to close your eyes.” Belle looked me, with a sense of confusion and nervousness. But then she complied, knowing she could trust me, and closed her eyes. I led her into my car and drove off.
“Where are we going? Is it far?”
“Not very,” I squeezed her hand. We finally arrived at our destination in front of the Boston Public Library. I got out of the car and opened the passenger door and took her hand. I carefully led her up the concrete steps up towards the grand entrance. I took out a pair of keys out of my pocket and unlocked the library doors. Then I guided her inside. “We have another set of steps to go up.”
“Okay.” We made our way step by step up the main staircase of the librry. “Can I open my eyes yet?”
“Not yet.” Once we got to the top of the steps, we walked down the corridors and finally stopped. “Now open your eyes.” She fluttered her eyes opened and was clearly shocked at where we were. I watched her look around the shelves and shelves of books and long tables with green desk lamps.
“The Boston Public Library? At night after hours? How?”
“I have a friend who lent me his keys. I also know this happens to be your favorite spot,” I said grinning at her. I motioned her to follow me to the courtyard with the fountain.
“How did you know? I don’t remember telling you or anyone at the office.” Her eyes were beaming.
“Well I did some research on the social media. You also read a book a lot during your lunch break, “I winked. We then walked up another set of stairs and stopped by a door. I took out a small box out of my pocket and gave it to her. “For you.” She opened it to find an old key and used it to open the door leading to a small room with a window overseeing the courtyard fountain.
The room had a desk with a chair, a book shelf with an attached nook to it. “I know you want to be a publisher one day and here is your own place to make it happen. The key also opens the library main doors so you can come in anytime you want.” Belle was clearly speechless and awestruck. Then all of a sudden, she jumped into my arms and hugged me, driving me into my own shock. On the other hand, I actually surprised myself even more by hugging her back.
“Thank you,” she said softly and almost out of breath. “It’s the most thoughtful thing anyone has ever done for me.”
“I’m glad you like it,” I smiled. We finally pulled apart and stared at each other for moment, not saying anything. Gazing into her eyes, under the moonlight I realized there could be something there that wasn’t there before.