Mangrove Stories Falling for a coworker is rarely a good idea, especially for a man getting a last chance at salvaging his career. But from the moment Dwyer Knolls sees the beautiful but socially awkward Takeo Hiroyuki, he seems destined to make bad decisions. Takeo’s life is a string of failed attempts to please his traditional Japanese father. Unfortunately, succeeding in business turns out to be just as difficult for Takeo as changing from gay to straight. In fact, the only thing Takeo seems to truly excel at is taking notice of Dwyer Knolls. When Dwyer and Takeo head to Mangrove, Florida on a real estate buying trip, their tentative friendship combusts and becomes much more. Is their sudden connection real enough to bank their futures on, or should they chalk the whole thing up to the daze inspired by the blue ocean breeze?
I HAD failed.
But the upshot was, I was now free to go. I was never meant to sit behind a desk in an office and look at spreadsheets anyway. My dreams included sun and wind and hopefully still high-stakes sales or even number crunching––because that was the part I loved––but without the glass-walled office. It was time to take a chance on my real dreams instead of dealing with the fallout of my last career decision. I hated facing the judgmental looks every day, hearing the snickering, and knowing that every person there, even colleagues who had become friends, thought I was a screwup.
As I sat in the large conference room along with the entire firm, waiting to have an emergency meeting on a cold, dreary Monday morning in January, I contemplated my future.
We had all been sent an urgent e-mail the night before that informed us to report to work at seven sharp to hear about the “new direction” the company would be taking—and we all knew some kind of shakeup was coming—so we convened and waited to learn the future of Sakura Limited, the real estate development company we all worked for. I had stopped on the way to get coffee for the two people from my old team who were still talking to me, Shawn Ferris and Liza Cho. I was still being thanked for the caffeine when Mr. Conner Troy, CEO, came through a side door and walked directly to the podium.
“Good morning, everyone, thank you all for coming on such short notice.” He glanced around the room. “The reason I called you here is to announce the immediate resignation of Managing Director Everett Connelly from the staff of Sakura Limited.”
The gasp from all corners was audible, but…