“Interesting.” Rickerson tapped his lip as he compared the three designs Moriarty had sent and listened to Cary tell him of Moriarty’s logic behind the resubmitting the one Rickerson had originally rejected. He studied that one intently, noting the changes and additions. Eventually he nodded. “The man has a valid point and with the alterations I think it could work for us. Let him know I would like to see it as a working site. If it still looks as good then, and there are no glitches, I’ll approve it and you can give him the go-ahead to put it up. And,” he looked at Cary now, “make certain he understands that he is responsible for maintaining it and seeing to it that it appears on first page of the major search engines. I’m willing to pay extra if that’s what’s required to make that happen. No sense in having a site no one will find like the one we have now.”

“I agree.” Cary took his leave after a few more minutes discussing details with his boss.

Back at his desk he formulated yet another email to Moriarty passing on the information from Rickerson. He ended by asking, half in jest, if Moriarty was male or female. ‘Not that it matters but if we’re going to be dealing with each other until this project it would be nice to know if I should call you Sir, or Ma’am.’

As soon as Preston received the email and read it he sent back a quick response. ‘I could ask you the same question. Cary is as unisex a name as mine. And in answer, I’m very definitely male.’ Impulsively he added a smiley face after that statement, considered deleting it and then said “The hell with it,” as he let it stand. After thanking Cary for his company’s business he promised he’d have a test site up and running by the next day and sent the mail off.

He was surprised to see an answer almost immediately, all three words of it.
‘Male here too.’

“I know,” he said softly to the screen. “A beautiful male.” He pushed that thought away quickly. This was a job and nothing more just as it was with all his other potential clients. Closing out his mailbox he went back to work, bring up the almost completed site for a small company in Idaho who’s owner was ecstatic that he would now have something he was proud of representing his business on-line.

Hours later he rubbed his tired eyes and closed down for the night. Getting up he walked across the room to look out the window at the night lights of the city. Despite the long day he’d put in he still wasn’t tired. He was also sick of looking at four walls with no one to talk to since Tabitha had called earlier to say she was pulling a double because one of the other nurses had called in sick.

He needed to get out of here for a while. The idea of doing that without his Tabby Cat to keep him company scared him. He hadn’t left on his own since the day he’d first come here. “Fuck, grow up Davison,” he growled to himself. “You can do this. There’s still snow on the ground and it’s cold enough.”

Grabbing his coat and gloves he headed to the door before he could change his mind, pulling the ski mask from his coat pocket and pulling it on before he walked into the hall. Rather than taking the elevator where he might run into someone who’d wonder why he had the mask on already he opted to go down via the stairs. At the bottom he took a deep breath and stepped out of the building onto the sidewalk.

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