Chapter 26 - First Day at Work
As I left the Chancellor’s room, I saw the Chancellor’s Operations Department, where I’ll be working from now on. About a dozen officials were busily moving and busy with their work. I gulped down nervously, which Count Clove noticed and cheered me with laughter.
“Don’t be so nervous, Secretary Harrant. You’ll be one of them soon enough.”
I wasn’t sure if it was encouragement or a warning. I just awkwardly smiled and was led to a man.
“Good morning, director. Oh?”
A handsome man greeted Count Clove, then stared at me. Hmm… I think I’ve seen that sly face before.
“Do you guys know each other already?” asked Count Clove.
The man then slyly shook his head and responded, “No, sir. I was just mesmerized by your beautiful company here.”
Count Clove then scolded the man for his flirtatious comment, “Don’t make any scandals, or you will pay for it.”
“Of course, of course. So, will you introduce me to my associate here?”
Count Clove frowned slightly at the man’s slightly disrespectful behavior and pressed his finger on his forehead to suppress his anger. “Senior Secretary, this is Associate Secretary Harrant.”
“Good morning, sir. I am Secretary Marina von Harrant.”
“Nice to meet you, associate Harrant. I’m Rave von Harsen, Senior Secretary and Policy Officer of the Operations Department here.”
I bowed politely at his quite respectful manner but soon heard a rather excited voice that followed.
“I was wondering about who was the famous perfect scorer, and I sure didn’t expect a beautiful lady such as yourself to be the one! We’ll have a flower among our stuffy department!” said Rave.
He was a smooth talker, just like his suave looks. I laughed at his exaggerated compliment, then gave my hand to him when he reached out towards me, thinking it was a handshake. But he immediately bowed and kissed my hand, which surprised me. Fortunately, I didn’t show my surprise and had a blank expression. I’m sure a man like him will surprise me as a joke.
“Hahaha. Secretary Harrant is quite a lady. We had many female officials from other departments who were surprised by his actions, but she didn’t even blink! Our department is going to be fun,” commented Count Clove.
I laughed, pretending to be embarrassed by their compliments, but I swore in my mind. I rubbed the back of my hand on my clothes. ‘Flirting brute, trying to win me over or something?’ I realized why the chancellor told me to train promptly. To think a flirtatious man like him to be my superior…
“Hahaha, that seems right. Hope we make a good team, Associate Harrant,” said Rave.
I brightly smiled as Rave talked smoothly and replied, “Of course. However, I do wish for you to keep in line as a senior officer.”
I smiled while directly warning him. I was about to grin at Rave, who seemed to be astonished by my words but had to freeze my expression when he looked at me meaningfully and winked. Dammit. Why do I have to be stuck with a man like that?
Rave then whispered softly, “You’re pretty cute, Marina. Just call me ‘Rave’ if you want.”
No, thank you. I’m pretty sure he considers many women cute. He’ll probably say anyone’s cute as soon as he talks to them. ‘You are now Punk Rave in my mind.’
Count Clove shook his head as he saw us and said, “Follow me.” Then, he took me to the center of the department office and shouted, “May I get everyone’s attention please!”
Every official who was working turned to focus on me. I was embarrassed by it but tried to smile calmly, pretending as relaxed as possible.
“This is Marina von Harrant, our new Associate Secretary and Policy Officer. Officers above the Secretary ranks should take good care of her as seniors, and lower-ranking members should treat her as your superiors,” said Count Clove.
They went right back to their work as soon as they answered. While I was astonished by how busy they were, Rave came over to me with a grin. “Alright, our cute associate. Shall we go teach you about our work? Follow me.”
He took me to the National Affairs Arrangement Office, where they select pending issues from each province. Rave, who acted playful as a joker, became a serious officer when he began to teach me about work.
“My associate, you will need to review issues that have been raised through here and report to me. I will review it again and report it, which then will go through the director, then to the chief advisor, then finally to the chancellor,” said Rave.
That’s easy to say, but it seems difficult with all these documents piled up. Then I asked, “What are the criteria for review?”
I felt a bit dazed at the load of work. Rave stroked his chin and smiled triumphantly, then he answered my question. “That is up to you, my associate. Mark the important issue with red, yellow for postponement, and green on a general issue. The management office should have sorted out the useless ones and discarded them, but you have to check to make sure it’s not here. For general issues, we can approve it on our own, but report to me just in case.”
I reflected on his explanation and tried to remember about classification as he continued, “Oh, and there’s a meeting every morning. You, me and another secretary will join to record the meeting. We can’t let general clerks record as there’s a risk of information leak. It is our role to formulate, plan and review policies, manage the officials and officers under us and operate the Internal Affairs.”
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