Invitations To Passion [8]

On the upper level, from the gallery floor to the ceiling, the walls were lined with books. There were a few comfortable-looking chairs and reading tables on the gallery, while the main floor was furnished in classic, comfortable, overstuffed furniture. There was one grouping of four easy chairs bracketing a marble-topped coffee table with ornate brass legs. Another grouping was made up of a long sofa that faced two easy chairs with no coffee table to separate them. All were upholstered in rich, burgundy brocade. Small tables with lamps on them sat one at each end of the sofa and a small table separated the two easy chairs from each other. Maris began at once to set up her equipment while Sondra explored the room.

“Do you like it?” Truman Garrison’s authoritative voice came from the open doorway and travelled easily to the far side of the grand room where Sondra was looking at a portrait of a young man. Both women snapped their heads toward the door. Garrison was leaning on the doorframe casually, with his legs crossed, and it seemed he had been observing them for a few minutes before he spoke.

“Mister Garrison,” Sondra said. She hurried across the vast room with her hand extended in greeting. She hid her excitement while she took in formed her first impressions of the great Truman Garrison. He had not been photographed in more than a decade, and Sondra was eager to see how the past decade had changed him. He was much more attractive at fifty than he was in his pictures from ten years earlier. Sondra had dug deeply into any history of the mysterious entrepreneur/philanthropist in preparation for this opportunity of a lifetime. She had immediately been attracted to the image that she gleaned from her research. He was of much greater substance than a mere over-achieving businessperson.

Sondra introduced Maris, who asked about the location of the interview so she could light for it. After a brief discussion it was decided that the grouping that didn’t have a coffee table dividing the space would lend a more comfortable atmosphere. Maris set cameras that would run constantly on Sondra seated on the sofa and Garrison in an easy chair across from her.

“No, I don’t want this arrangement,” Garrison said.

“Oh, I’m sorry,” Sondra said. “How would you like it to be?” Sondra said.

“I want you in this chair beside me, so we can be closer while we talk,” the handsome gentleman said. Sondra looked at him long and hard. His face had clearly defined planes and his dark grey hair was in tousled disarray over his furrowed forehead. He was clean-shaven, and in both pierced ears he had small, plain, gold studs.

Sondra set herself in position in the chair beside Garrison’s. The small table between their chairs was the only separation, and the chairs were angled slightly toward each other. Maris showed some exasperation while she moved all her equipment to light the new positions and set up the automatic cameras that would record Garrison and Sondra independently throughout the entire interview.

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