Thursday, April 5, 2012


Greatly flattered at being invited to breakfast with Senator Bellardi the morning of the firebombing, Stevie had accepted the role of debate team writer the moment it was offered. She had discovered almost immediately that her "promotion" came with a significant amount of baggage she had not foreseen. For openers, the senator expected Stevie to continue to supervise Prayer Fax and Fax-O-Gram, with Wes taking over more of the writing. Apart from the pressure of added responsibility, Stevie was pleased to retain oversight of the bulletins and her
young protege.

Stevie's two roles in the campaign—debate team and communications— would require at least thirty hours a week until the conclusion of the debate series. She would have to burn the midnight oil just to keep her advertising business afloat. Another large challenge accompanying the promotion was working under Robert. So far, he had not revisited the invitation to dinner. Half of her wished he would. Half of her prayed that he would not.

Since Stevie had agreed to serve as a debate-team writer, Robert treated her like a member of the campaign's inner circle. Though flattered by Robert's trust, Stevie realized that privileged status brought added emotional pressure.

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