Maid for the Millionaire

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Maid for the Millionaire
I hope I don’t screw it up.
    That single phrase was all that resonated through my head as I walked through the forest path in the twilight hours of a beautiful day in June. Birds were chirping, the wheels on my suitcase were squeaking, my heart was pounding. As a fresh-out-of college 24 year old girl, my worries had changed in the month since I graduated. Instead of fretting about the extra pounds I had put on or that my term paper was five thousand words too short, I was now concerned with finding the money to put food in my mouth and a roof over my head. My degree was in a saturated field, one that required at least a year of unpaid internships to get lucky enough to be considered for a paid position. I was broke. I couldn’t wait that long.
    The road I walked down led to the Carawell estate. The family had been famous in my neck of New England for their wealth and for the scandal involving their missing infant son around fifteen years ago. Victor Carawell was something of a legend in the stock broker business, carrying an uncanny streak of investments that led to untold riches. Many would pay quite a price for his dedication and skill in the trade. Some accused him of being a cheat, an insider. Others proclaimed his intelligence and luck to be entirely self-made. I couldn’t tell you which was my opinion; I had never met the guy. To me, he was my future employer. My ticket to building up my savings account. So I could go on to bigger and greater things. That’s right, I had been accepted to be one of Mr. Carawell’s many maids.
    I had done a bit of cleaning as a part time job in college for some extra fun money. It was never anything on the scale of serving a multi-millionaire. Thankfully my friend and former classmate James vouched for me, he had been working an apprenticeship in the stables ever since he graduated ahead of me a year ago. The thought that I would have a friendly face to see in this hidden in the woods mansion comforted me. My heart still pounded as I walked.
    When I reached the front doors of the mansion it was 6:15. A full quarter-hour after my scheduled arrival time. As I knocked on the door my mind was fully prepared to make one of many understandable excuses for my tardiness. The bus was late, the hike from the main road to the mansion took nearly ten minutes; it was not an easy location to get to. But seconds after I rang the bell a woman appeared in my sights from behind the front door. She looked distinguished: perfectly parted hair, expensive grey sweater, tight black pencil skirt and the highest heels I had ever seen. No words initially, just a careful stare as her eyes darted up and down. I felt like a lion’s prey being scoped out for its next meal.
    “April Thompson?”
    “Yes Ma’am. I apologize for my lateness, I...”
    “No matter. I’ll be your supervisor. You may call me Helen. Come, let’s get you sized up. Let’s hope we finish by dinnertime.”
    Helen led me so fast through the mansion I

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