Jazz finished her phone call with Ning and looked up to see Fiona looking at a set of photos hung on an adjacent wall. She read aloud the headlines from a newspaper clipping that Jazz had framed.
“Female student beats out the boys.” Fiona returned to her chair, “I like beating out the boys, too. Journalism is full of little boys!”
Jazz considered that it was remarkable that although both women shared the same television network, their paths seldom crossed. Fiona, much to the relief of her London staff, was more often in exotic parts of the globe.
Jazz made a point of looking at her watch. “I’m really too busy for small talk.”
Fiona raised an eye brow, uncrossed her long legs and bent down to the floor to retrieve her large leather Armani shoulder bag As she bent down her lacy bra revealed the soft fullness of firm breasts, a little whiter than the rest of her tanned body. Jazz felt an involuntary and pleasurable shiver steal across her inside and she shifted in her chair.
Fiona smiled as she withdrew a series of magazine pictures, each in a plastic covering. She pushed them towards Jazz.
“I’m ready to create a new look for the first floor of my Belgravia home. I want a self -contained for a rental project. I don’t use the whole damn house.”
Fiona watched Jazz for a reaction. Belgravia, London’s exclusive West End was the domain of Embassies and residences of the elite.
Jazz pushed the photos back.
“I haven’t time now. If you will just make an appointment….”
The door opened. Ning appeared, her face full of enthusiasm.
“Hi, Fiona, nice to see you again.”
Jazz stared at Ning and waited for an explanation.
“Fiona dropped this off to me yesterday after you had left work. I was just looking at them when Margaret informed me that Fiona was here. I was going to show them to you today, but with this morning’s meet with the School Board, it slipped my mind.”
Jazz looked from one woman to another. Ning would never lie or embarrass Jazz. Ning’s face had a look of truth in it. She glared at Fiona, she was the manipulator working to split the women into two camps.
Jazz looked at Ning, barely able to contain her anger.
“I told Fiona we were busy. She can make an appointment with Margaret on her way out.!”
To Jazz’s utter dismay, Ning turned to Fiona. Ning, whose Chinese name translates as‘tranquility’ was determined to disarm the hostility in Jazz.
“Jazz, if we had met at the end of the day, I would have told you that the decorating aspect of Fiona’s project really interests me.”
Ning turned to Fiona.
“I will never make a decision without consulting Jazz. Not only is she my business partner, but I love her deeply. She is part of my family and godmother to our baby. I think you get my drift, Fiona.”
Fiona was not fazed.
“Naturally. I applaud such a bond, really I do!”
Ning turned to Jazz.
“May I just confirm a few things with Fiona, before you and I make any decision?”
Jazz nodded, but was acutely aware that Ning was sold on Fiona’s decorating ideas.
“Fiona, you’re going for an Asian décor effect. I can see the Feng Shui aspect at work-balance, serenity, beauty and comfort. You’ll need to put in ‘power spots’ with plants and personal objects that have meaning.”
Ning reached for the empty cup and poured herself a coffee.
“Jazz, this is my niche. Maybe we could outsource the Milan job. This project would be a hit on our television show. That is, Fiona, if you would agree to our filming in your dream location?”
Fiona put a hand on Ning’s arm, “I was going to suggest this to Jazz, but she had me on a very tight schedule.”
Fiona raised her eyebrows playfully towards Jazz.
Jazz reclined with her arms behind her head. Obviously, Ning had given this project considerable thought. But why would Ning show her hand and be so enthusiastic before a client? This was out of character for Ning, even if she was enthusiastic. She did not doubt Ning’s love or integrity, but this had not been a smart business move. Jazz had to gain control, or Fiona would have too great a bargaining tool. Besides, just on principle alone, Jazz would never let a woman out manoeuver her in business or in pleasure!