Re: Zephyr


Herr D

Chapter 8: Editing Views

Seventeen new pages proofed, eight images cropped and logo added, teleprompter fed, and final pages sent to printer–Eight minutes to two. Yah. This IS closer than I like. David practically ran to the printer as it stopped. He separated it by heading, handed Tia and Shelley their stacks, and darted over to Old Mike, who was muscling Camera One an inch or so to the left at a time and checking the view. Their quick conversation was lost in the noise of Nathan and Stuart doing sound check and Jennifer’s wrist canes clicking as she headed to the bathroom. Looks like panic, and he isn’t bothering me. I may have to push the envelope more often. Jennifer caned up to the sink. She smiled at the trashed counter with it’s splotches of makeup and powder. An eyebrow pencil and a lipstick, forgotten, lay under some sodden, crumpled paper towels. The bathroom sink of a pretty woman. It’s like that book, ‘The Portrait of Dorian Gray.’ A wreck made to preserve beauty.
A loud crashing noise echoed through the building. Shouts, curses, and the scrambling of men followed. Speaking of wrecks . . .
The bathroom door swung open, revealing a worried-looking Tia. Tia flounced in, followed by Shelley. Jennifer gave them a questioning glance.
“They broke Cam One again!” blurted out Tia. Ohhhh.
Shelley grinned. “Two minute wait. Three extra commercial spots. They’ll have Cams Two and Three moved by then.”
“Can Po have the adaptors swapped by then too?”
Shelley and Tia froze. “Go!” said Shelley. Tia ran out. Shelley turned to Jennifer. “Thank you.”
Jennifer shrugged. “I just figure it’ll keep the wrong people from getting in trouble. Like you and your boyfriend helped me earlier.”
Shelley had bent toward the mirror, looking for faults in her makeup. “Who?”
“Young Mike.”
Shelley gave Jennifer a funny look. “I wouldn’t do that to him.”
Shelley smiled, “If I wanted him, I’d have to get him another job first. David wants the world thinking Tia and I are dating HIM. If I dated someone here at work, David would fire them for me messing up the image.” Shelley looked Jennifer up and down. “Besides,” she whispered, “I’m not into men.”
Um! Um! Oops. Jennifer felt her cheeks warming up quickly. “I didn’t know.”
The bathroom door burst open. Tia came in, anxiously looking at the mirror. “Know what?”
“I’m forty,” said Shelley, winking at Jennifer.
“You are NOT!” Tia blurted out. “You don’t even look THIRTY!”
Shelley smiled warmly, “Why, THANK you, Tia! Of course I won’t look this good for much longer.”
Tia blinked at Shelley while she pulled out a foundation bottle and applied a speck to her already perfect base coat. “Why’s that?”
“I started using foundation a few years ago.”
Tia froze, staring at the bottle of foundation in her hand. “What?!” she squeaked.
Shelley and Jennifer started laughing. Tia snatched up a paper towel and threw it at them, easily deflected by Shelley. Tia froze again. “I forgot.”
“How do you say that word mezz- mezz- ?”
Jennifer frowned, “You mean mezzanine?”
“Yes! Thank you.”
Jennifer shook her head. Tia left the bathroom at a full run.
Shelley looked up at Jennifer in the mirror. “He’s not into me either.”
“What? Who?”
“Young Mike. He does like working with me, and I think I’ve caught him checking me out. He’s not into me though.”
Jennifer blinked. “Why not?”
Shelley laughed. “Men looking doesn’t mean anything. Do you think men fall in love with magazines? Or commercials? David used to look at me before he got me in the situation I’m in. Young Mike says he doesn’t like makeup much.”
Uhh? “Situation?”
Shelley smiled. “Nothing like that. David knew not to touch me. He hired me straight from a little station in West Virginia. Not a studio like this one, either. A whole station. But he hired me based on a piece I did on sexual harassment. He’s never going to act up in front of me.”
“What situation, then?”
Shelley grimaced. “He lied to people, saying I got the job BECAUSE I was sleeping with him. He wound up bragging to the wrong people about it and driving a little business away from us. You know that station in Delaware that stopped ordering our feeds?”
“Well it’s owned by a woman. She got wind of that and called me, said she was trashing my application to work for her. She said she’d heard the ‘rumors,’ but I know who started them.”
“Yeah, well; he’ll get his someday.” Shelley walked out.
Even considering the wreck of Camera One and the late start, the filming went well. Post-production went surprisingly smoothly, Jennifer finishing up a few minutes before four o’clock. She toyed with her simplified logo transparency as the feeds were bought and sent, Nathan and Stuart being their usually goofy, over-eager selves. Really, guys. It’s good product. You probably push down what they’re willing to pay us. She was beginning to close the file when David trotted out of the office with a map, all smiles. He pushed ‘page.’ “Young Mike, please report to the editing desks.”
By the time Young Mike arrived, David had borrowed a large straightedge and started drawing lines on the map. He looked up. “So, how did your field day with Shelley and Jennifer go?”
Young Mike looked at him oddly. “Shelley seemed to think we got some good leads and some good footage.”
“And your bit on Zephyr?”
“Not so much about Zephyr. Our leads wound up being in other directions.”
“You want to make it here as an assistant tech, or a cameraman? Maybe go full-time? Wait for tomorrow. Tia and I are going to get this story moving. We’re going to try to interview the thing. And I’M going to do the camera work. You’ll see how I want it done. I need you to stop at the hardware store before six and get the list Po is making.”
“On it.” Young Mike left.
So, Davy-boy CAN be led around by the nose by a guy, as long as he thinks he’s impressing him. He’s NEVER slept with Shelley. Probably never with Tia either if he’s that cagey about harassment issues. Shelley’s into women, and I may be the only one here who knows. Young Mike is like a closet stud or something, pretty clever, and may be naive enough to not know David would probably like him to take my job. Tia can actually run without messing up her hair . . . how? I can’t even cane at HALF-SPEED without messing up mine! –Wait. David is acting like he’s some kind of investigative reporter. Interview Zephyr? What’s he doing with that map?