The Job Offer - By Eleanor Webb

Chapter 1

"Thank you for your interest in Stanford Enterprises, Dr. Conner. Your resume is excellent, and we have been impressed with what we have seen and heard in your first two Skype interviews. If you are still interested in Stanford Enterprises, I would like to, at this time, schedule your next interview with us. As you know, the next phase of the interview process will be for you to meet with us in person here at our headquarters for an interview with Mr. Winfield, Vice President of Engineering, Dr. Rudolph, Vice President of Research and Development, and Ms. Tomlinson, our Human Resources director. If we would like to call you back for a final interview, you would meet with them again. Mr. Stanford will also be there. Stanford Enterprises will cover the cost of your airfare, of course. Interviews will begin on June tenth. Will you be able to fly in on the morning of the tenth? I can reserve a seat for you on American Airlines Flight 691. Dr. Conner?"

"I'm still here, Ms. Iverson. Let me check my calendar, please. It will be just a moment." Dr. Jane Anne Conner put the call on hold, waited several seconds, and then pressed the "Hold" button once again. "Yes. The tenth will be just fine. What time is the flight scheduled to leave Boston?" Anne asked the Stanford Enterprises hiring representative using her best professional voice. At least, she hoped she came across that way. Anne was far too excited about making it into this next round of interviews, and her voice tended to rise when she was excited. Looking down at her computer tablet, she pulled up the calendar app and blocked out the full day for the tenth of next month. She already knew the day was free; therefore, there was no need to check it. It was nice to finally be able to put something in it

"Flight 691 is scheduled to leave Logan International from the main terminal at 6:40 am Eastern time and will land at Sea-Tac International at 8:35 am Pacific time at Concourse B," Ms. Iverson informed Anne stoically. "We will have a car waiting to meet you at the terminal. Your interview is scheduled at 10:00 in Building One here at our facility. The interview is expected to last until 11:30 and will be followed by a brief tour of our campus. Then you will have a few hours to have lunch and have some time to yourself before the car returns you to the airport again. Your return flight on American flight 1901 will leave at 3:10 and land in Boston at 11:05 pm. I will email the flight information to you, and your ticket to Sea-Tac will be held for you at the American Airlines' counter. The fourth round of interviews will begin on the eighteenth. I will contact you again if we decide that we would like you to return for the final interviews with Mr. Stanford. Do you have any further questions that I can answer about the next interview, Dr. Conner?"

"No, Ms. Iverson. You’ve been very helpful. Thank you."

"In that case, good luck, Dr. Conner. I wish you well."

"Thank you, Ms. Iverson."

Anne Conner, known professionally as Dr. Jane A. Conner, but called Anne by family and friends, pressed the "talk" button on her phone to disconnect the call and placed the handset down on the kitchen table where she sat. She could feel a laugh bubbling up from her gut, and she let it loose and followed it with a loud cheer. Then she stood up and danced a happy little jig over to the refrigerator where she pulled out a bottle of water from the interior. She took a quick swallow then took a couple of deep breaths to calm her racing heartbeat. Getting the phone call today was an answer to her prayers.

Her latest consulting contract job ended that Friday just before the Memorial Day weekend, and she did not have another one lined up. The adjunct courses she taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology finished up two weeks ago, and no courses in her field of study were being taught over the summer break. Thinking about what she had still left in savings, she estimated that the longest she could go between pay checks was four months. After that she would need to ask her father for the money, and she was determined never to do that.

The interview on the tenth of next month came at