Let me start off by saying that I am no where near being an attractive girl nor do I get much male attention, but this is what happened to me after joining a prestigious law firm in Boston (yes, I know what you make be thinking but that’s just a TV show).
I started working here after completing my vacation worker program with some firms while completing my University degree in law. The law firm I worked for now was one of the law firms that I did part of the program with and liked the culture that the office had. I was super excited when they accepted my application to work with them as a grad.
I was paired up with a buddy in the litigation team and worked long nights being the office bitch. As anyone who works in legal knows, vacation workers are put in some of the nicest offices the firm has in skyscapers office which tower above the rest of the city making its citizens look like ants. We are given the best experience of their 2-4 week run… the free caramel lattes on tap from “X” local coffee shop downstairs, the free lunches, the daily and weekly catch-up meetings and the overall pleasantness of the experience.
Sadly, when you’re employed, you’re at the bottom of the chain and have to work your way up. You’re payed a low wage, expected to work long nights particularly when there’s a case on. Court isn’t exciting as it seems either. We’re forced to dig through hundreds of boxes of paperwork to find what ever the senior partners need for the case their working on. We’re also forced to cart the boxes of paperwork and all other supplies to the war rooms at the courts – not the picture we were sold before signing up.
Though, this is a normal part of the legal world and this is how everyone gets their start so I accepted this as did my other fellow newcomers and we got on with the work.
This is where the story starts to take a turn in the wrong direction.
My buddy was responsible for overseeing my performance and was meant to be my mentor, to help train me and learn the ropes. He was extremely good looking, tall, dark hair, handsome and he would wear glasses when reading paperwork but not when using his computer. I admit that I had a bit of a crush on him.
He would seem disinterested in me when we spoke and each conversation with me seemed force. I wasn’t his only protegee (I can’t think of the other name to best explain what we were to a buddy). There 5 of us , one of them being an extremely attractive blonde girl. She was a little taller than me and went to the gym every chance she could. It was obvious he had a thing for her and she had one back for him.
Fast forward 6 months. I was still working litigation and my buddy was still still his same distant self with me. He kept piling on more and more work on me and I could barely keep up, forcing to work later and later each night. My buddy and blondie were still eye-fucking each other and seriously needed to get a room which was honestly starting to make me sick.
I was working late one night reading over the contracts written up for a case we were working on and my buddy was too. No one else in our department was around anymore and I made it a habit to only leave after your boss does.
In the corner of my eye, I saw my buddy finished typing an e-mail then packed up his stuff. Finally, I could go home I thought. I looked back at my paperwork to make it look like I was lost in my work and waited for him leave.
I flipped pages and jumped at the sound his voice standing right behind me. “Still working?”. He had walked around the entire area and sneaked up behind me. I would thought it was no big deal if things didn’t get worse from here.
I told him that I had so much work to catch up on and that’s why I was working late. He asked if it was too much for me but I didn’t want him to think I was not capable at doing my work so I told him that I was handling it well.
He nodded and said good, extending an offer to shout out for help if I needed it and that we’re all a team here. This was the first nice thing he’s said to me since starting but it didn’t feel entirely genuine.
Each late night he made it a point to make small talk about work when he went to leave. I started expecting him to speak to me that I didn’t really know how to take being ignored the whole day by him but behind closed doors as it were, he would have some time of day for me.
I confirmed this by making an effort to make small talk to him during the day when the office was at its fullest. He went out of his way to tell me that he was busy but was fine when the other people in the group saw him and made small talk. I was seriously confused.
Then when I least expected it, it happened.
After he left one night, I left not long after. It was night, around 8.30pm. I lived alone so I didn’t have anyone waiting on me at home. No pets, no fish, no housemates. Just me by myself with some family back in Illinois.
I walked my usual route to the bus stop which was a few miles away but within the city so it was safe to walk at night. During my walk, my buddy called to me: Elise. I stopped in my tracks and looked at him. I didn’t see him there prior, I guess it seemed like he went out of his way to hide himself. He caught me by surprise and replied: Dan… I thought you’d have left! He replied saying that he was waiting for me.
That kinda creeped me out. I asked him why. He proceeded to tell me that work has been so crazy and has been full on for him that he felt bad we haven’t been able to connect properly. This didn’t seem true to me as he had made plenty of time to talk to others in the group but I told him that it was okay and I understood. I didn’t want to make a bigger deal about this than I should but I didn’t feel right about what he was saying.
He smiled and nodded while looking down on the ground. It was as if he was a completely different person. He was more timid, less confident and shy. He didn’t seem to be my buddy.
I told him I had to go and continued to my bus stop.
The next day when I came into work, my buddy stared at me through the glass wall at his office as I sat down. It put me a little on edge as he kept staring at me but I pretended to get on with my work. A bit later on in the day, he walked past me to talk to someone else in the group. I felt a tickle on my shoulder as he walked past and crouched by my colleague. I looked at him after I felt that but he didn’t make any eye contact, almost like he was trying to hide it.
He walked back to his office after that but didn’t say or touch me again.
He started doing that more and more until I eventually I caught him in the act. He smiled at me when I looked him in the eyes and he stopped after that. I was still so confused by this as he still didn’t talk to me like a person or someone that he worked with.
Meanwhile, he still was still flirting like there was no tomorrow with the blondie and she wasn’t not aware of his antics with me.
A few nights later as he went to leave the office, he came up to me and asked me if I wanted to get a drink with him. I politely said no as I was exhausted from pulling these long days for several months, but he honestly creeped me out more than the feeling of exhaustion.
Dan insisted I drink with him as a thank you for all the hard work and that he had some news from higher up about my progress in the firm. I thought it was a bit unorthodox as he could have spoken to me properly during the day, especially if it was to do with work. I didn’t get why he wanted to go out for a drink to speak about it.
My job, my Achilles heel. I hesitantly agreed and we left to a local bar nearby. We both got our own drinks and we sat down beside each other at a table. I refused for him to buy me a drink as I didn’t want him to get the wrong impression.
We made some small talk but we spoke about the same things we already had over for the past few months when we spoke… talking about the weather, people at work, etc. I reminded him about his announcement from the higher-ups, the reason why we were here in the first place. The expression on his face was as if he had forgotten.
He then told me that he put in a good word for me with all the hard work I’ve been doing and the long hours I had been putting in and that it hadn’t gone unnoticed. I felt great after hearing this as I started to feel like a number, not a person and my motivation was starting to drop.
After a few more drinks, Dan started passing comments to me such as how he liked the clothes I wore to work, how beautiful my hair was and the color of my eyes (which were green). I blushed a little with his compliments and started to think that he ignored me because he was interested me.
I asked him: I thought you like blondes?
He replied: Why would you say that?
I mentioned that he and blondie (she has a name but I’m leaving it out for the story) looked they had eyes for each other which may have been the alcohol that gave me the courage to say that, but he took it well and said that he wasn’t interested in blondes or in blondie.
This kinda made me feel a lot better about myself. I decided to leave on a high note after finding out the real Dan so I let him know that I had to get home as it’s been a long day. He asked me if I was sure I had to go. I nodded.
He then responded: It must get lonely living alone?
The feelings Dan had just installed in me after complimenting me escaped me and were replaced by chills shooting down my spine. He had no way of knowing how or where I lived.
I asked him: Come again?
Dan replied: I just assumed you live alone that’s all.
He clearly knew I lived alone, it wasn’t just a guess. I rushed out the door and told him I’m running late for meeting my parents, so I’d see him at work tomorrow – obviously a lie but I did call my mom that night and spoke to her.
She wasn’t surprised that somebody had a crushed on me as she considered me the most beautiful girl in the world and that any man (or woman, no judgement) would be lucky to have me. After hours of chatting I ended the call.
I was still a little freaked out despite my mom’s attempts at calming me so I got a cider from the fridge to take the edge off and went to bed.
The next morning on my way to work as I approached the front door, I saw a letter in front of it on the floor. It was slipped under my front door. It was white and had my name written on it.
I picked it up and opened the envelope, then pulled out a plain piece of paper folded in quarts and a photo. I looked at this photo and saw the most horrifying thing I think I will ever experience in my life.
It was a photo of me in bed self-pleasuring myself. It is embarrassing to retell but here goes… there was a candle lit and I was using a toy. My blinds were closed and the only light was from the candle. As I studied the picture, it was clearly taken form my wardrobe.
I unfolded the letter. It was a handwritten letter saying “See, it does get lonely living alone.”
I dropped the letter and checked my wardrobe, fearing for the worst, fearing that Dan would be in there. Thankfully he wasn’t, but to be sure, I moved all the shirts and coats on the rails aside. I got on the floor and checked under my bed, I checked behind the shower curtain in the bathroom and checked behind the curtains.
He wasn’t there. I looked out one of the windows in the living room at the world going past for a few moments, coming to grasps with what had just happened. I then looked at the window frame and saw that the lock wasn’t turned. The window was unlatched. I opened it.
I should mention that there’s a fire exit outside my window and it would be possible for someone to enter my house and even hide behind the curtains without me knowing.
I reported it to police and quit my job.
I testified against Dan in court. Understandably, he lost his job and I moved back in with my parents as this ordeal has scarred me.
I don’t think I’ll ever get over it.