Just The Blue

The trading floor was the epicenter of the surging, noisy shrine to power and commerce that was Enron Corporation. It was my favorite place to be, right in the heart of it. In the nexus. Times Square. Ground Zero. Right there. It was a long, hot draw on the crack pipe, the energy of it still pulsing in my body hours later.

I was standing near my friend’s workstation, trying to absorb the whole juju of the place, burn it into my neural grooves so I could remember it later, so I would never, ever forget it. It was the atmospheric equivalent of 7-Up, fizzy, with energy jazzing through the architecture, animating even the molecules that danced in the super-charged air.

Then the energy changed suddenly. Like a hard wind coming in over the water, pressure lowering as if a jet plane had just zoomed through the room. You could feel the approach of something big. A strange new intensity burned. Voices rose. A wake moved through the room. I turned my head and I saw him. A handsome man with light brown hair. He wasn’t tall, but he had an amazing, vivid physical presence. All the energy in the room, all that pulsing, writhing excitement seemed to originate right there, from him.

“Who is that?” I asked.

My friend laughed. “You’re kidding, right?”

I shook my head.

“Jeff Skilling.”

I had just come from school and so was dressed inappropriately. I was wearing a blue jean skirt that barely covered my butt and a black t-shirt. Flat shoes. When his eyes found me, I felt that he must surely be wondering why I was so out of place. If he noticed at all, he didn’t indicate it. His eyes – Enron blue, the blue of the building, the blue of the letter E – just smiled vaguely and turned to answer someone who had approached him.

Something so special about him. Power, I thought. That’s what power looks like.

I went home that night to an empty house. The contrast to the screaming intensity of the trading floor made my room thrum with vacancy. I undressed and collapsed into soft, overlaundered, alien bedsheets and dreamed of something vast and deep and very blue.

Well, not the something.

Just the blue.

Cara Ellison

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