"Liv, another great segment."
Olivia smiled at Rita, the stage manager and Olivia's best friend, as one of the crew members helped her get out of her mic. Once she was free, she turned fully to Rita.
"Thanks," she said.
"Hey, a bunch of us are going out for drinks after work, want to join us?"
"I think I'm just going to head home after I read through these emails," Olivia said.
"You've got to get out!" Rita whined. "You've been out here a year and you don't do anything but work and go home."
"What's wrong with that?" Olivia asked as she reached her office, sat down behind her desk and booted up her computer.
"You're not living," Rita said.
Olivia rolled her eyes and put two fingers to the pulse on her wrist. "I feel a heartbeat. So obviously I'm alive."
"I said you're not living," Rita clarified. "That's much different. You're merely existing. You're the most boring twenty-something year old I know. You're the face of Live at Five! You should be out there using it to your advantage."
Olivia shook her head as Rita plopped down into the seat across from her.
"I'm not here to wild out, Rita. I'm simply here to do a job."
Rita groaned and stomped her feet on the ground.
"Okay, 'grandma'. But next week is your birthday, and we are going out. And we're going to find you someone to give you your birthday licks."
Olivia stopped browsing her social media page and looked up at Rita, who had a shameless grin on her face.
"Seriously, Rita? I've told you a million times, a man is not on my agenda these days."
"I'm not saying find a man fall in love with again. I'm saying find a man to fall into bed with."
"You know that's not my sty–"
Her breath stalled in her lungs as an alert popped up.
David Perry sent you a friend request.
"It can't be," she whispered.
"What can't be?" Rita asked, popping up from her seat.
"David," she said quietly.
"David?" Rita repeated. "The 'David' you told me you were all in love with as a teenager before you moved to California. That David?"
Olivia nodded. "He sent me a friend's request."
"And then what?" Olivia asked. It had been so long. She'd gone through so much. And men weren't in her life's plan right now. She'd had her heart broken one too many times. First losing him, although that was through no fault of his own. And then her failed marriage.
"And then you talk," Rita said. "Reconnect. It's been...how long?"
"Ten years," Olivia said quietly.
Rita pushed Olivia's chair out of the way and grabbed the mouse.
"Let's check him out," she said. "See how he looks now."
Before Olivia could stop Rita, she was clicking on the profile page. They both looked confused when they saw how empty it was.
"There's nothing here..." Olivia said.
"It can't be real," Rita said. "Everyone has a page these days."
A message box popped up and Olivia gasped when as she read the message.
David P.: Olivia?
"What do I do?" Olivia asked Rita.
"Send a reply."
Olivia blew out a shaky breath and began to type.
Olivia F.: Is this really David Felder?
"Good," Rita said over her shoulder.
David P.: Yes, it really is me. I just got this page. At my cousin's insistence.
Olivia F.: How can I be sure this is you?
Olivia could feel Rita clutching the back of her chair. Her friend seemed just as anxious as she was. It took so long for him to answer, she began to feel like maybe he wasn't who he claimed to be. But finally the messenger pinged.
David P.: The summer we were together, I saved up enough money to buy an old Chevy. It was in the back of that same Chevy, that we drove down to the lake, where we lost our virg–
"Whoa!" Rita shouted and then began to laugh.
Olivia hopped out of her seat, grabbed a still laughing Rita by the arms, turned her and then shoved her out of her office before slamming the door and locking it.
She looked down and realized her hands were now trembling.
She walked back to her desk, sat down and placed her fingers on the keyboard.
Olivia F.: Okay...it is you...
David P.: Yeah...hey Livvie...
Olivia felt a tear, slide down her cheek as she typed...
Olivia F.: Hey David...