It wasn’t the best photo-shoot I’d been on but there had been a lot worse. Tristan was right, the photos had been tasteful, shots of me in various positions around the set Christian had organised. He said he was aiming for it to look like snapshots into someone’s life, private moments no one else sees. I think he was trying to bring out the vulnerable side in me I don’t like to show. But I played along, lowering my eyelashes and letting my fiery hair hang over my face.
There were a few awkward moments where Christian’s hands found their way to places they shouldn’t or the look he gave me was definitely not one a photographer should give his model, but I ignored it, thinking about the shocked look on Locki’s face when she saw these photos.
I was really looking forward to coffee with Chantelle, God know I needed a break from the faces I saw every day, and she was always good company. I was beginning to feel good about myself until I walked into Costa and the first person I saw was Locki sitting at a table by the window. My initial reaction was to either punch that pretty face of hers or walk away, but seeing as neither of those was an option I went up to the counter to get my coffee then sat at a table with my back to her.
As soon as Chantelle arrived we both left, not wanting to sit in the same place as Locki any longer. We stepped outside and walked briskly away from the coffee house towards the park.
‘So what’s this great news you wanted to tell me?’ I said, linking my arm through Chantelle’s.
‘Oh right. They want me for the Mkenzi job.’
‘No way!’ I exclaimed. ‘I’m so proud of you.’
‘I know it’s going to be hard, especially since I’m up against Locki and the DeMitrio job but I’m just glad they thought I was right for their campaign.’
‘You’ll blow them away,’ I said, squeezing her arm tightly. ‘You’re far better than Locki, they would have been stupid not to pick you. And it’s nice to know one of us is getting big jobs.’
‘I’m sorry, I forgot to ask about the photo-shoot. How was it?’
‘Bearable. Christian was as terrible as always but nothing I couldn’t ignore. Tristan tried to tell me he loved me again. It’s so pathetic; he knows I would never think of him like that, he’s my agent. He knows that my work life and private life just don’t mix and never will.’
‘Even if you liked him?’ Chantelle asked slyly.
‘Even if I liked him,’ I said firmly, ‘which I don’t. Not in that way at least. He’s a good friend, he has to be when we work together every day, but nothing more than that.’
‘Because we all know who you’ve got your eye on,’ Chantelle winked, earning herself a soft poke in the ribs.
‘Mitchell doesn’t know that and he won’t. Besides, he’s not going to be interested in me; he dates girls like Locki.’ I spat out her name, remembering another reason why I hated her. ‘Stupid blonde bimbos who don’t have two brain cells to rub together.’
‘That’s a bit harsh on him. We both know he has better taste than that.’
‘Do you see the girl he took to the Model of the Year Awards last month? I’m pretty sure the peroxide will have killed any intelligence she might have had to start with.’
Chantelle laughed, both shocked and amused by my blunt insults.
‘You never know, he may change his mind and see the light,’ she said once she’d composed herself.
‘Or my red hair!’