Home > One More Promise (Band on the Run #2)(5)

One More Promise (Band on the Run #2)(5)
Author: Samantha Chase

   Opening the folder, she only gave it a cursory glance before continuing. “I’ve been actively working with Literacy Now for some time on a personal level, and when they came to me and asked for help with a new campaign, I knew we could do something amazing for them. My plan is to bring on a host of A-list authors for promotional spots on TV and in newspapers and magazines to talk about the issue. On top of that, they will go to schools and talk to teachers and students, to encourage them not only about the importance of learning to read, but also to share the joy and wonders of how reading can enrich their lives.”

   “Who have you recruited so far?” her father asked, and Paige was thrilled to see the genuine interest on his face.

   Pulling out the list, she was about to read it and then stopped. What the…? She glanced over at Ariel, who was now texting on her phone. “Ariel?”

   Her sister looked up. “Hmm?”

   “What is this list?”

   “The one you asked me to work on.”

   “Uh…no, it’s not. This is not a list of authors. I have no idea who these people are. My list had New York Times bestselling authors from multiple genres—Marta Hayes, Mitchell Blake, Stephen Cane… Who are these people you’ve contacted?”

   Robert Walters looked over at his older daughter and waited. Paige knew immediately that the waterworks were going to start and the excuses were going to fly.

   “That is not what we talked about, Paige! You said you wanted big names. You didn’t specifically say authors.”

   “It’s a literacy campaign! Who else would we need? And, need I remind you, I gave you the list. All you had to do was reach out to their agents. I didn’t ask you to contact anyone new.”

   “Oh, that’s just great! I do you a favor by finding you better people—more famous people—and this is the thanks I get?” Ariel cried and then looked at their father. “Honestly, Dad, I was trying to make this campaign a success. No one will pay attention to people they don’t know talking to them about things they don’t care about. There was no one famous on her list!”

   “Now, Ariel, Paige had a specific plan for this campaign—”

   “But it wasn’t going to work,” Ariel countered. “And besides, I was trying to do a good thing. I’ve been feeling so weird lately, and then it came to me that this was what we needed to do. So while I was at the doctor’s office—”

   “Why were you at the doctor?” Robert asked, concern instantly lacing his voice.

   Paige was certain she was seeing her own brain from rolling her eyes so hard. How was it that nobody else saw through this ridiculous act?

   “Well,” Ariel began with a coy grin, “I was going to wait until lunch to tell you, but…” She looked around the table to build anticipation. “I’m pregnant! Dennis and I are having a baby!” Then she squealed with joy and waited as everyone jumped up to congratulate her.

   With a sigh of resignation, Paige stuffed the papers into the folder and simply joined the line to wait her turn.

   * * *

   The next day, Paige begrudgingly sat and looked over Ariel’s list. The rest of the previous day had been a bust. After the big pregnancy announcement, the meeting had ended. Her father promised they’d get together later in the week to talk about the campaign again, but he had been too far gone with joy at the news of becoming a grandfather to concentrate on anything else.

   There was a part of Paige that was excited at the thought of becoming an aunt, but really, it was the image of her sister getting fat and throwing up that put the slight grin on her face.

   “Uh-oh. Someone looks like they’re plotting something!”

   Looking up, Paige chuckled as Daisy walked in. She was a little bit younger than Paige—fresh out of college—but there was something about her that made you feel like she had been living under a rock or something. She was a hard worker but a bit…quirky. Clueless. Not in a bad way, Paige thought, but there were times when it took far too much energy to reel the girl in.

   “What could I possibly be plotting?” Paige asked sweetly. “There’s too much work to be done to focus on anything else.”

   Placing some messages on her desk, Daisy took a seat facing her. “So how did the meeting go yesterday? I had to head out early. Did everyone love the list of authors we’re going to get?” She sighed happily. “I mentioned to my mom—who loves to read—that we were trying for Marta Hayes, and she about fell out of her chair! I mean she screeched, and I thought she was going to hyperventilate! So I had to calm her down and get her something to drink and before you knew it—”

   “Daisy?”

   “Hmm?”

   Paige took a moment and studied her assistant. “Remember when we talked about asking questions and waiting for the answer before you start talking again?”

   Confusion came first. Then remembrance. Then a smile. “Right. Sorry,” Daisy said with a sheepish smile. “You were going to tell me about the meeting.”

   “I had just started going into my pitch about the list of authors, except when I looked it over, it was all different. Ariel changed it,” Paige said.

   “What? No!” Daisy cried with disbelief. “Why would she do that?”

   “Because she thinks we need bigger celebrity names—not authors. I mean…she doesn’t even understand what it is we’re trying to do here. It’s a literacy campaign! We need to have authors! I know there have been other campaigns with sports stars and celebrities, but that wasn’t the angle I was going for.” With a huff, Paige pulled up the list of names Ariel had made and handed it to Daisy. “Honestly, I can’t even look at the stupid thing. I get aggravated just thinking about it. I don’t even recognize some of those names!”

   Taking the paper from her boss’s hand, Daisy scanned it and then gasped excitedly. “Oh, come on! You have to know who Mick Jagger is!” Then she looked up at Paige and shook her head. “Not that I expect him to do the campaign. I mean, let’s be realistic.”

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