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Dan walked into work the next day with a bit of a pep in his step. The memories of the night before had given him an extra burst of happiness which was only slightly deflated when he went into his office and saw a huge stack of new paperwork. There was a note on top that said the new papers were the latest on the Peterson Case.
The extra work made Dan puff out his cheeks but he resolved to get back to it. He sat down behind his desk and started pulling files towards himself to do the relevant work. It was only an hour later that the good mood had evaporated and Dan felt like he was slogging through mud, with a sigh of exasperation he looked at the clock and begged it to tick faster. The new paperwork was even denser than what he had been working on the previous day.
“Knock, knock.” Landon’s smiling face appeared at the open door.
“Oh, Landon. Come in.” Dan said as he pushed a particularly thick folder away from him.
“Is this a good time?” Landon asked as she walked in, “I can come back.”
“No, no, please stay.” Dan chuckled, “Anything to give me a break from this paperwork.”
“I can do better than that.” Landon smiled as she strutted across the room and sat in the seat on the opposite side of the desk, “Myers has put me on the Peterson case with you.”
“Really?” Dan raised his eyebrows. It was unusual for more than one person to work on a case, even one as big as this.
“But I’m not here to tread on any toes.” Landon said, “You tell me what you need and I’ll do it.”
Dan had to admit to being intrigued in this new working situation. He was obviously happily married but Landon was undeniably a very sexy woman. She looked like she could have gone into modelling if she had chosen to do so. He also noticed what she had chosen to wear that day, her bust was almost falling out from the low cut dress that was only barely suitable for work.
Olivia woke up late and when she rolled over she saw that Dan had already left for work. She stretched a little and felt the anxiety in the pit of her stomach, it took her a couple of seconds to remember that she didn’t have to worry about work anymore. She smiled to herself as she hugged her owl stuffie that she always slept with.
“What shall we do today, Hootie?” Olivia said.
“Play!” Mr. Hootie replied. His voice sounded suspiciously like Olivia talking like an owl.
“That’s a great idea!” Olivia said and then giggled.
Olivia rolled out of bed and then turned to pick up Hootie. She was wearing a very thin pink nightgown which she pulled over her head leaving her naked. There were two chest of drawers dedicated to Olivia in the bedroom, one was full of her regular adult clothes and the other was bursting with clothes for “Livy”. It was to this second chest that Olivia now walked.
Olivia dug through her various outfits until she eventually pulled out a pink Barbie t-shirt and a similarly colored frilly skirt which went over a pair of white panties with pink hearts on them. She took a minute to pose in front of the mirror before heading downstairs. It wasn’t often, especially recently, that Olivia woke up feeling little but now she saw no reason to be a grown-up. Being little was so relaxing, Olivia’s busy mind would calm down a little and she was able to concentrate on the things that seemed important in that headspace, things like coloring and making sure all her stuffies got enough attention.
Once downstairs Olivia made herself some cereal. After a quick breakfast she took a sippy cup full of juice with her into the living room. As she sat down she saw that Dan had left a note for her on the small table at the end of couch.
“Olivia, just wanted to leave a quick note asking if you could do a little tidying up whilst I’m at work. No pressure or anything, I just thought since you’re going to be at home all day you could work on the house a little. Love you, Dan.” Olivia read. She put the note down. Maybe later she would do some cleaning, right now it didn’t feel right.
Olivia turned on the television and switched to a channel that exclusively showed cartoons and programs for very young children. Olivia clapped with glee when she saw her favourite show was on, she loved cartoons with talking animals and this was easily her favourite. She sat on the couch with her feet up and cuddled Hootie as she lost herself in the colorful world on the screen.
Time quickly slipped away from Olivia and after a day of playing she looked at the clock to see that it was nearly time for Dan to come home. She rather guiltily looked back at the note next to the couch that had asked her to do housework. She knew she wasn’t pulling her weight in terms of chores, it just felt so difficult and the allure of being little was too enticing to resist. She would get around to her tasks eventually… probably.
Landon sat in the passenger seat of Dan’s car and considered her next move. She was sure Dan had been checking her out a little throughout the day and she had been trying to impress him with her legal knowledge. As five o’clock rolled around and it was time to go home she had suggested the possibility of her coming over sometime to get some more work done. Dan had agreed immediately and quite to Landon’s surprise had suggested that very evening.
Now Landon was listening to some classic rock songs coming from Dan’s car stereo. Dan had a nice car and he was a smooth driver, Landon didn’t know the route exactly but she knew the rough area that he lived in. It seemed to be a nice neighborhood though.
“Are you sure Olivia won’t mind?” Landon asked for the fifth time that afternoon.
“Of course not.” Dan replied without hesitation, “She’ll like seeing you again. She likes you.”
“She does?” Landon raised an eyebrow. Whilst Olivia had never been cold towards her she was surprised to hear Dan’s wife had positive feelings for her.
“How could she not?” Dan asked with a chuckle.
Landon looked out the window as the car slowed and then turned into a driveway. Dan’s house was one of a dozen or more that looked identical on that street. A two-story detached house with a garden in front that had clearly once been well cared for but had fallen into some disrepair. Weeds were popping up among the flowers and the grass was a little too long compared to the neighbors.
“Nice place.” Landon said as she took her seatbelt off and started to open the door.
“Yeah, well, you haven’t seen inside…” Dan said quietly. Landon wasn’t sure if she was meant to have heard him.
Landon sensed possible cracks in the relationship and eagerly filed it away mentally. She reached the front door first and took a step to the side as Dan walked up and put his key in the lock. He paused and looked at Landon, clearly there was something on his mind.
“Look, the place isn’t as tidy as it could be.” Dan muttered quietly, “Try not to mention it. It’ll stress Olivia out and become this whole thing…”
“Oh, the poor dear, I won’t say a thing.” Landon frowned in sympathy and then put a hand on Dan’s shoulder.
Dan looked at the hand and then turned back to the door. He turned the key and pushed the door open. Landon followed Dan inside and her first impressions weren’t bad. Dan had rather overstated the cleanliness problem, the situation wasn’t great but it wasn’t awful either. Landon was about to say as much when she heard scampering of feet from the room closest to them.
“Hello Dad-... Dan.” Olivia came bounding out of the living room with a big smile on her face. When she saw Landon staring there she stumbled both physically and mentally.
Landon could immediately tell something was up. It didn’t exactly take Sherlock Holmes to see that Olivia had been caught very off-guard. She was now looking down at the floor determinedly with a face that was turning redder even as Landon studied her. Landon raised an eyebrow when she looked at the outfit Olivia was wearing, it seemed very out of place on a thirty-year-old woman.
“Olivia, sorry, I should’ve called ahead…” Dan mumbled.
Landon could see that even Dan looked a little embarrassed. There was definitely something unusual here, perhaps something she could use. For now though she had to play the good guest.
“Olivia, so great to see you!” Landon stepped forward as if she hadn’t noticed anything unusual and gave the smaller woman a quick hug, “How are you?”
“I’m… fine.” Olivia said slowly.
Landon let go of Olivia and stepped back. She again took in the childish clothing which she had to admit looked cute on her. The three of them remained in the hallway for several silent seconds. Landon was sorting through everything she saw and trying to decide if she could use it. One of her best attributes at work was her attention to detail, she didn’t miss anything.
“Shall we go into the living room?” Dan said eventually, “I’ve got some files we need to review.”
“Of course.” Landon smiled.
“Livy, I’ll do dinner in an hour or so, OK?” Dan said, “Why don’t you wait upstairs or something.”
“Sure.” Olivia seemed thankful to have an excuse to leave the situation and no sooner had Dan finished his sentence than she was off up the stairs. Landon watched her go curiously and waited until she was out of sight.
“Livy?” Landon asked.
“What? Where did you hear that?” Dan stopped as he was opening the living room door and turned to look at Landon with wide eyes.
“You just said it?” Landon frowned.
“I did? Oh, right… Erm…” Dan swallowed and turned back to the door as he muttered, “It’s just a term of endearment.”
Landon was almost overloading from all the information she was getting. She almost felt like she had to get a notebook out to take note of all the little quirks. She followed Dan into the living room and looked around. Nothing immediately seemed to be out of the ordinary.
“Please, take a seat.” Dan said, “If we go over these customer forms now it should save us some time before the meeting tomorrow.”
“Sure.” Landon smiled and nodded. She went over to the couch and sat down.
Landon reached out for a stack of papers that Dan handed her. She put the pile on the couch next to her and pulled the top sheet of paper off. As she scanned the page she allowed her eyes to wander. The room was nice, the carpet could do with a vacuuming and there was a layer of dust on nearly every surface but it was far from a disaster.
Landon sat back with her pen and went through each sheet of paper. Occasionally she would cross something out or make a note of something but only a couple of times did she talk to Dan who was equally absorbed in his own work. Olivia was still upstairs and after hurrying up there Landon hadn’t seen or heard from her, it was enough to peak her curiosity. After forty-five minutes Landon looked up from her paper to Dan.
“So, you’re the one that cooks meals?” Landon asked conversationally.
“Usually.” Dan replied.
“I would’ve thought… you know what, don’t worry about it.” Landon looked back down at her forms but her eyes darted up. She could see Dan looking up and towards her.
“What?” Dan asked.
“It’s nothing…” Landon made sure every movement and syllable was absolutely precise. Despite what she said it was clear there was something she was itching to say. Inwardly she smiled as she saw Dan taking the bait.
“No, go on.” Dan continued.
“It’s not really my place to say but…” Landon paused for dramatic effect, “If you’re the one working shouldn’t Olivia be the one cooking and cleaning?”
“You know how Olivia is.” Dan said with a sigh, “It’s difficult for her and stopping work is a big change…”
“Forget about it.” Landon said as she held up her hands, “I’m sorry, I shouldn’t pry.”
Landon continued to work with Dan for a while before they had finished the stack of forms. She stood up and stretched, with some satisfaction she noticed that stretching her arms above her head emphasized her chest which drew Dan’s attention. She thought it was cute the way he furtively looked her way and then then focused on something else when he thought Landon was watching.
“I’d better go.” Landon said as she started putting her things back in her bag, “I don’t want to impose.”
As Landon and Dan said goodbye at the front door the woman saw some movement from the top of the stairs. Just glancing around the bannister at the top, leaning like a child trying to spy on her parents was Olivia. As soon as she saw Landon looking Olivia quickly disappeared behind the wooden guardrail.
“Are you sure you don’t want a lift home?” Dan asked.
“Thanks, but I don’t want to be a bother.” Landon said as she turned to look at her co-worker. She wanted to emphasize how independent and low maintenance she was, everything Olivia was not.
Landon turned away to walk towards the nearest bus stop with a big smile on her face. She had hoped to push herself in between Olivia and Dan but she hadn’t expected to find such fertile ground to do so. She had a lot to think about as she travelled home.
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