a balanced team thriller novelFabian couldn’t help notice the efficient way Grant’s partners worked, a stark contrast to the time-wasting play-acting of the corporate meetings he’d suffered in the previous six months with various publishers and marketing representatives.

“Kat, it’s great to meet at last,” said Fabian. “And Aaron, although we’ve not had direct contact, your work speaks for itself.”

“He’s charming and good looking,” smiled Aaron. Kat and The Onne chuckled.

“Grant and I have a couple of things to discuss, then we’ll look over the storyboards,” said The Onne, “so back with you two in about an hour.”

Fabian realised he needed to clear the air, especially if he was to contribute properly to the venture.

“Look, I have a couple of questions,” he whispered to The Onne as they walked.

“No problem, get them out in the open, and there’s no need to whisper in here,” she replied.

“What you said about ‘lovebirds’ just now. Do you have a policy on relationships? I’ve got a previous relationship with Jessica, and I guess you had one with Grant …”

The Onne grabbed a coffee flask and poured into two cups. “Being open is the answer to everything as far as we can tell. Open enough to ask or answer a direct question, open to letting the past lie and move on to the present.”

“Good in theory. What if the question causes a problem?” asked Fabian.

“We use a sport approach. Deal with the incident then and there, with a referee if need be. Don’t take the issue away with you.”

“Okay for general issues, even business issues. What about emotional?”

“Same rule. After any sport you can use the changing room to adjust, physically and mentally. Warm down, change your clothes, punch the wall if you want. We reckon you need to shake off any emotional baggage as well,” she answered.

An excerpt from Brian’s Red Diamond, part of the Women out of Time trilogy.

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