November 13, 2014 by helenwaldron
In which Writewell finds out more about the Happlon Group.
Like a small child who thinks his own thoughts are universal and need no explaining, Happlon never actually told Writewell what he needed her for. Even though he talked non-stop about his business and his business associates, she ended the lesson with very little knowledge. And the problem with names went on and on.
(“Do you have a first name?” was one of the few questions she had posed that day.
“Yes,” was the answer.)
He was, however, a very forceful man and he ordered her to return the next day at the same time. Having spent ninety minutes in his wooden paneled office, reading between the lines as best she could (and nodding intelligently whenever he paused to look at her), she cancelled her plans for the evening and resigned herself to scouring the financial press on her laptop for further clues.
Is there anyone still reading who doesn’t think being a teacher is detective work? Especially a language teacher, dealing with different personality types and business cultures.
She learnt that some of the Happlon cousins had sold a large proportion of their shares to a giant conglomerate and that they were urging Hamburg Happlon to do the same.
“Oh, yeah, he’s a control freak!” confirmed Speakeasy when he finally returned her call. “He’s probably ruining the company, but he sees himself as heir to the throne and there’s no way he’ll step down. There was something about receivership and American investors, now I come to think of it.”
“James,” said Writewell. “Wherever you are. Please come back and take over these lessons.”
“No can do, Jools,” said Speakeasy easily. “I’m here in Andalusia with Maren. Maren Malden”, he added after a moment’s hesitation. “It’s the only week she can manage before she starts her new job on Monday.”
“You’ll be fine,” he added, as Writewell’s desperation hung in the ether. ”Just get the bill in sharpish, maybe even bill as you go. You know, just in case.”