Doug stands a few metres from the window, just far enough that if Josh looked up, all he’d see is the reflection of the afternoon sun.
Just the sight of him brings a flood of emotions, and his resolve ebbs away in the riptide that is their history together. Neither of them would be who they are today had they not meet all those years ago.
He takes a deep breath in. This is how it must be. The retrospective will go ahead. No matter what tantrums Josh throws at him, there is nothing he can do to stop it.
A retrospective that will reignite the value in Josh’s work, and even create additional revenue streams. It is, after all, all about the gift shop.
If it can’t be packaged up as a poster, a mug or a fuckin tea-towel, then it ain’t going to pop. And Doug has it all. The prototypes are neatly hidden away, and if Doug really wants to land a fatal blow, all he needs to do is bring out the Lucy keyring.
Josh looks up, but Doug can’t read his expression because he’s wearing sunglasses.
There is a point in his staring that Doug swears they are looking at one another, sizing each other up. That was always the risk of relentlessly pushing Josh’s star ever higher, that one day he’ll outgrow you. Watching him now, Doug sees the future, and it scares him.