Chapter 01.1 – For the WIN

|| 01. PAIZE 1 ♥ ||

Pacing agitatedly in her office Mohana was managing a conference call, while busily highlighting corrections on an article for the upcoming issue of Sophista. An extensive layout of breakfast offerings sat untouched on her desk, only leaving access to a classic silver boxed device.

On one of the walls of her massively large office loft, live stream of the annual Couture Catwalk fashion show was rolling. With every few steps Mohana stole a glance at the screen before bringing her focus back to the tasks at hand.

With exceptional hard work and persistence, Mohana had carefully shaped each step of her success ladder. Her rigor had not only been recognized and awarded in the industry but had also made her a role model for the masses.

While rare for such a young individual to manage the responsibilities of a brand like Sophista, her appointment to the editor-in-chief had been one of the most lauded news of recent times.

Since taking ownership, Mohana had brought in waves of success to the chic journal, proving the worth of the decision many times over.

Sir Gallaghair, owner of the publishing house, till this day continues to receive endless accolades on his decision from peers and crowds alike.

When asked about his partnership with Mohana, in his famous interview Rael Gallaghair had fondly remarked: Mohana is a ball of fire, her lightening energy will leave you astounded and she showcases that with her relentless work but that’s just the good part, she’s not easily impressed and she makes you work really really hard, I don’t get spared either.

The mighty editor-in-chief has been an amazement to most and Sophista readers are always curious wanting to know more about the woman pulling the strings.

Having traversed through chaos at a tender age, Mohana stands by a single grounding principle which has made her one of the prized and most influential faces in the industry. Despite the tumble of associations and make belief articles, sprouts of news through various venues, Mohana only believes in the inevitable reality: nothing belongs to her, except her own hard work.

With winner announcements being declared on the Couture Catwalk show, Mohana looked up to see a familiar face appear on the screen. A systematic buzz erupted through the classic silver device decorating her desk.

Making a run to it, Mohana managed the heavy apparatus juggling her papers alongside to answer the connection. Almost knowing what she was going to hear, a smile appeared on her lips.

From the other side of the line, her enthusiastic assistant Jojo screamed on top of her lungs “He won! He won! Fourth time! Fourth time in a row, this is so epic! That has never happened in the history of Couture Catwalk!”

Mohana widely smiled with joy in her heart and listening to the exuberance pouring through the line, she wished “Congratulations to you”

“To you too Miss Mohana! He is so handsome! Those hair I tell you, I bet all these women want to run their fingers through them” Jojo gushed

Mohana laughed at her excitement “You could run a campaign in our upcoming issue and we can gather votes”

Wistfully Jojo sighed “Miss Mohana you cannot always think about work!..” she urged her boss “..Look at him on that screen. I left the side wall panel to run the stream for you. Do you see him?”

“Ya” Mohana mumbled shyly without divulging that her eyes had been trained all along on the screen, admiring the handsome man whenever the cameras spotted him

Jojo dreamily claimed “See! All he’s wearing is simple blue jeans and yet he’s looking sooo drool worthy”

At those words, Mohana briefly shut her eyes attempting to rid herself of certain memories. Memories, where all he had been wearing were indeed only jeans.

In an attempt to divert the conversation, she lightly commented to her assistant “And he won an award for being a fashion designer in his jeans?”

Drooling over the handsome man on the screen in her office, Jojo blissfully sighed leaning back on her chair “Yeah! Exactly! And that tshirt, oh goodness look at those biceps, Leya must be going crazy looking at him right now too”

“She’s married” Mohana quipped, realizing full well, in no certain terms it would be feasible to deviate Jojo from admiring the handsome man giving his award speech

Straightening at the remark Jojo exhaled a breath “We all can’t get married to that one hot guy or that one hot chic because real life has to happen but we can be appreciative, Miss Mohana”

“Sure” Mohana mumbled frowning at the logic but her heart twisted at the thought

With stars in her eyes Jojo continued “My heart’s going to give away one of these days working for Sophista! There’s so much candy. But don’t you think he’s the best of the best that our eyes have ever seen?”

“Jojo, you say that about everyone who has appeared on Sophista covers” setting her silver blonde hair to the side Mohana looked away from the screen, peeling her eyes from the dashing man who stood owning the fashion runaway

“Yes! I can’t help if my eyes can detect beauty in people and that’s why I interrupted your conference call. I am going to connect you with his offices directly so we can roll our decision on getting Omar Shaan on the cover right away. They are bound to be very happy to hear from you” Jojo excitedly claimed

Turning the highlighter between her fingers, Mohana suggestively offered “They are at the Fashion Trend, maybe we give them a break? Once his team gets a chance to celebrate we can follow up with a call to discuss details”

Appalled at the suggestion from her boss, Jojo rushed “That can’t happen Miss Mohana! They expect our congratulatory call almost immediately. Our offices have wished Omar Shaan on each victory right after the winning announcements, whether it be Couture Catwalk at Fashion Trend or any of his other engagements and victories. And he keeps winning everything! Oh my heart! But because you’re going to talk to them, there’s no better time and we will definitely get our cover deal secured. Him being on the cover of Sophista will be as prestigious for him as it will be for us”

Tackling various business relationships, Mohana and her efficient team maintained seamless connections. Despite the background noise and ups-and-downs of the industry, Mohana led a superiorly managed publication that emphasized neutrality.

With her having established this smooth model of operation, Sophista requests for an appearance, interview or photo shoots were almost always positively received.

“Sure. Ya. Go ahead” giving in Mohana mumbled her agreement. She ran nervous fingers through her thick blond mane. To convince Shaan Designs for a photo shoot of their owner, while seemed like the most simplest task, it was the said owner himself who made everything complicated.

“Did you have breakfast? Or should I come back and check?” Jojo inquired punching information on her device for making another connection

A small smile appeared on Mohana’s lips “I was multitasking, have to send Salm his article back and am running short on time, I’ll have something in a while”

“Oh goodness, no! You have to eat first! Salm will wait, I’ll manage him. I’ll route you through Shaan Designs in a minute, while you focus on finishing your food, it’s almost getting time for lunch, you also have to eat that!” commanding Mohana to eat, Jojo took her agreement before disconnecting their call to pick another gadget to speak to it.

As promised to Jojo, Mohana reached to pick a melon wedge from the colorful display of items set on the her desk. Knowing Jojo, she gathered the wide spread of the breakfast was intentional.

The maze of food almost blocked all working documents from being reached, encouraging Mohana to primarily go through them before she could consider working.

Instinctively her eyes looked back at the large screen again, but before she could locate anyone, she fidgeted with the control to switch off the stream altogether.

Dismissing the feelings of her heart with a shrug, she convinced herself there was no point for her to see the live show any more. Omar Shaan had won the award and her journal wanted him on the cover.

That was, whatever there was to it.

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