“Do you ever feel bad for her?” Angela asked, chewing on the end of her carrot stick, and looking into the far corner of the cafeteria.
Mica turned around and saw Ashley sitting alone at the small table in the corner, eating her lunch turned away from everyone else. “No. If she wanted to eat lunch with someone, she could try not being such a bitch in her everyday life.” Mica answered, taking a bite out of her sandwich with probably unnecessary vigor.
“Yeah, but there has to be something wrong in her head, right?” Angela asked, looking back to Mica.
“There are many things wrong with her head,” Mica said viciously, but at the look from Angela, sighed, “What do you mean, Angela?”
“I mean, there has to be something wrong do be so determined to climb the corporate ladder that you are so vicious to everyone around you, right? There must be some trauma in her past to make her so determined to win, right?” Angela tried to insist.
“Maybe,” Mica countered, “But we all have trauma. You don’t see me throwing anyone under the bus to climb the ladder, do you?”
“Yeah, I guess,” Angela picked up a potato chip and chewed it thoughtfully. “I just feel bad for her, I don’t know why?”
“You’re too kind-hearted,” Mica said, “dangerously so. But if you want to be nice to her, no one is going to stop you. Just don’t expect me to join you.”
Angela suddenly stood up. “You know, what, I am going to be nice to her. Maybe that would change things.”
Mica rolled her eyes. “Good luck.”
Angela ignored the sarcastic tone, and gathered up her lunch, crossing the lunch room to Ashley’s corner. “Hey, Ashley. Do you mind if I join you for the rest of lunch?”
Ashley looked up slowly, sizing up Angela as she went. She put on a smile so sweet and fake that it made Angela’s skin crawl a little. Angela was already regretting coming over to her and Ashely hadn’t even opened her mouth yet. “Actually, kind of. If Barbara or Bradley come into the lunch room today, I don’t want them to think that I’m friendly with you after your big mess up last week. I don’t want association with you to bring down my value.”
Angela blinked at her in silence for a moment. “It wasn’t ‘my big mess up.’ The client went out of business. There is no way I could have prevented it or changed the outcome.”
Ashley tilted her head, sickening smile still in place. “Yeah, but it still goes on your record as a lost client on your care, and I don’t want to be associated with that.”
Angela blinked in silence for a moment longer, and then crossed back to where Mica was sitting, all but throwing down her food on the table.
“How’d that go for you?” Mica asked.
“Shut up.” Angela countered, “Just shut up.”
“Told ya so,” Mica added before a glare from Angela shut her up.