By Design – Chapter 41

Eli read over the notice one more time, just to be sure. The amount of relief he felt at the words on the page was more than he ever could have imagined simple black text could create. He could have kissed Ken for bringing him such good news, but he refrained.

“So that’s it then. The case is settled.”

“It’s settled,” Ken assured him. “The other party agreed to the terms we presented. The paper work has already been submitted. Now it is just one less thing we have to worry about. And now we can move past it and start looking to the future.”

“The future,” Eli agreed. He mused over the idea. The future had always been something that frightened him, from worrying that he would one day turn into his father to worrying that his business wouldn’t survive. But his outlook had changed a lot over the last year. The future had a lot in store for him, he realized now. It had more possibilities waiting for him than he ever would have dared hope for.

“Ken, I was thinking this news deserves a celebration,” Eli told his assistant.

“A celebration?” Ken seemed surprised by the idea.

“Of course. I think we owe it to our loyal customers and partners to thank them for sticking with us throughout all of this and believing that we would get it resolved.”

Ken nodded slowly as he contemplated the idea. “That’s not a bad idea, actually,” he said. “I think they would all appreciate the recognition and the gratitude.”

“Check our schedule for next month,” Eli told him. “I think a thank you event in time for the holidays would be a perfect gift for our supportive network.”

“I agree,” Ken said. “A thank you for the holidays would be perfect.” He left Eli’s office to begin working on the preparations.

As Ken left, Eli reclined in his chair, feeling rather content with himself. It was an excellent plan, Eli realized. This party was exactly what he needed. Their customers and partners would appreciate his time and effort toward them, raising his company’s image even more. But that wasn’t his only reason for wanting to bring everybody together. Eli has something else brewing in the back of his mind.

Inside his top right desk drawer was a small box. A box for Gracie. And he wanted as many people as possible to be present when he gave it to her.

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