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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Favoritism (02/28/05)

TITLE: The View From His Eyes
By Joanne Malley
03/06/05


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I arrived early as usual.

The office was quiet. Several computers hummed through the silence in the air.

I lifted the tattered satchel from my shoulder—an indentation remained from the weight of my books. Training at Blakely College of Business was going well, but studying overwhelmed me with my full-time job here at Harfield & Company.

I settled in. I only had an hour before Mr. Harfield arrived. I cringed whenever he revealed his gruff exterior and barked orders through his porcelain teeth. Perfectly brewed coffee would be his first request. The tantalizing aroma of Swiss Vanilla Bean made the drudgery of the chore slightly bearable, but only to my nostrils.

He rarely murmured words of praise, except for when Dominique, his executive secretary, accomplished a task. There were times she repaid his attention with a few compliments as well.

Dominique is responsible for many important jobs and works closely with him on several accounts. I’m a glorified gopher; his personal assistant. I schedule appointments and tend to his personal needs. I feel like a loser compared to her.

“Get me this, get me that…” is all I hear. I’m even required to shop for his favorite socks at Bloomstrom’s. Next time, I’m buying ones with nylon. I hope his feet sweat.

I feel unnoticed—like an ugly duck wading on a sun-kissed lake with a beautiful swan. In our office scenario, Dominique is that beautiful swan. I know God notices me, but sometimes that’s not enough. I want to be seen by others too.

I wondered how it would feel to shine. That’s why I attend Blakely…to be just like Dominique. Next semester, I’ll enroll in a personal improvement class as well. Hopefully, one day I’ll get some of that attention.

I plopped in my chair and reluctantly pulled my grammar books from my satchel. I was learning sentence structure and letter composition. I needed to get my assignment done for tonight’s class.

I looked up and watched the white-faced wall clock tick through my wire-rimmed glasses. In no time, Dominique would be here. Her hair would undoubtedly be perfect; her outfit would turn heads. She’d flaunt her good looks and designer clothes. As she approaches me, I know I’ll feel compelled to shrink in my seat to hide my off-the-rack suit from the consignment shop.

The hint of fragrance that trailed behind her would certainly stir longings with some men. I know it did with Mr. Harfield; I saw the look of desire on his face even though he was married. She always got his attention while I remained translucent.

No one noticed me…except possibly today. I smelled musty from my wet wool suit. I got caught in the rain. The condition of my hair revealed evidence that I struggled with the outdoor elements.

My hour of peace went fast. I placed my completed assignment in my satchel. Two minutes were left. I took this time to glance out of the twelfth floor window of the Hassler building we occupied. I braced myself for the daily charade to begin again. Thank goodness it was Friday.

Dominique arrived and walked right past me as usual. I sometimes see her looking my way with pity when my eyes are slightly diverted.

“Ann, did you call the restaurant for the final preparations?”

The second bark of the day came directly from Mr. Harfield.

“Yes, sir, everything’s confirmed,” I answered in a quiet voice.

Tonight was Dominique’s dinner. She was promoted to Account Executive and I reluctantly planned the event. I’m thrilled that I have the perfect excuse to skip the party—I have classes this evening.

My circumstances have left me to feel that even God doesn’t recognize me. All my dedication and hard work goes unnoticed. My anger gets in the way of my spiritual growth, but I’m praying that God will soften my heart so I may see I’m favored in His eyes, for simply being His child.

Two verses from the book of Psalms spoke to me as the clock struck 5:00. “The Lord gives righteousness and justice to all who are treated unfairly,” verse 103:6, and, “God is a judge who is perfectly fair,” verse 7:11, NLT.

Only faith can help me believe I’m favored in God’s eyes. According to Him, the opinions of others shouldn’t matter. From now on, I hope to evaluate myself from his eyes only. His view is crystal clear and in my favor.


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Member Comments
Member Date
donna robinson03/10/05
I liked the way you built this character. We knew from the beginning it was someone who wanted to better themselves. Then we saw her lose her way a little with the envy of someone she really didn't know, only knew the working exterior. So she never knew if her personal life had hurts and pains too. We saw her shrink into herself, her confidence she seemed to have in the beginning get eroded with a barking boss. We almost pity her a little till at the end she comes back, stands a little straighter and reminds herself that it is her opinion and God's that really matters. Interesting character building here.
Linda Germain 03/10/05
I wanted the story to continue! :0) ( This would make a good short story!) Nice writing.
Sally Hanan03/10/05
Some real writing here in that it could so easily be any working woman's day.
Phyllis Inniss 03/11/05
I too like the character build-up, very convincing and true to life. You hit the nail on the head when you said "My anger gets in the way of my spiritual growth". However, you came to the realization that it is only God's opinion of you that really matters and that's the important thing.
Nancy Hardy03/12/05
A very well written piece. You have voiced what so many feel, regardless of there station in life. We, as Christians, all look for what we already have in Him- favor. Best wishes, Nancy