Airy hums emit from machines whirling together blends of cotton. Dark brown eyes observe the process before darting back to industrial factory doors. Several trucks full of ink are being delivered today, and Gail, the newly appointed manager needs to sign off on the exchange. The purchase was made a week before she began working, so she’s never made a transaction with this company. Custom made steel toe boots thud against concrete as she approaches a group of men standing beside the exit. This is her delivery crew, but today they’ll be directing another company’s team. Gail straightens her posture, and lowers a hand from her hip, “The trucks are due to arrive in five minutes, so let’s open the doors.” Used to her impassive demeanor when giving orders, the delivery crew wastes no time lifting the doors. Making her way outside, she gestures for one of her assistant managers. Her slender frame slumps against the wall. She’s wearing a bright purple blazer with black skinny jeans. “Well, we got all the dollies out, so there isn’t much to do besides wait,” an older man chuckles before standing beside her. “It would be nice if the Penny Blots’ trucks arrived soon. It’ll me bothersome if we’re put behind schedule again,” she crosses her arms. Conversation is slow between them but eventually fills the time. Two minutes after their expected arrival, the trucks roll into view. Satisfaction stretches across her light red lips. Things are running smoothly. Once the first truck is directed into the factory she follows suit. A man exits through the truck’s passenger door. Yellow fabric hangs over his shoulders, suggesting he holds a different position from the men exiting through the truck bed. His eyes sweep across the factory floor, skipping over Gail to the assistant manager beside her. “Ah, you must be Mr. Summer. I have paperwork for you to fill out,” a clipboard is held steadily in his hand that he offers it over. Gail’s eyes widen for a second as she follows his movements, “You have the wrong person. I’m Ms. Summer, this factory’s manager.” She points at her chest, as if to reinforce the point. Red dusts the delivery man’s cheeks as he reads her name tag. “Oh! I-I thought you were an inter- Ahem, that doesn’t matter. Take this pen.” He stutters, somewhat unnerved by her stoic expression. Her eyebrows quirk up, before the pen and clipboard are handed over. Come on, I’m not that imposing, she thinks. The assistant manager chuckles after witnessing their exchange. “I need to see the barrels before signing anything,” she gestures to the trucks, expecting to be led to the cargo. “Of course!” After adjusting his vest, the man heads for the first truck. Gail saunters behind him while flipping through the paperwork then abruptly stops in place. Her head shoots up, and the man turns around. His eyes are squinted, showing confusion. She looks down and flips to a specific page. “Ah…” her lips press together as she re-reads the page’s header multiple times. The delivery man clasps his hands together before approaching her, unsure of what to think, “Is something wrong?” “Someone mixed up the paperwork. Another textile company’s name is listed on this page’s header.” He springs up into a straight position, “Let me see!” After confirming someone mixed up their paperwork, the small group rushes to check if the correct barrels arrived. Men unload several barrels then proceed to check their labels. The delivery man looks down and gulps before meeting eyes with her. “It seems barrels were mixed up…” Gail chews the inside of her lip before taking a deep breath. This isn’t the delivery crew’s fault, “Can you please call your director?” A nervous smile etches itself onto his face as he reaches into his back pocket. He pulls out his phone and dials a number. It takes a few minutes for him to explain the situation before the mobile device is handed over. The director’s voice is low, and he offers to accredit their account. Apparently it would take a month for a new shipment to arrive. “This is beyond a mere refund. I’ll need to delay deliveries this month,” her voice could cut diamonds. The line goes silent for a few minutes, “Penny Blots can issue statements to the companies you’re working with. My supervisor also gave me permission to remove delivery fees for this company…” Sighing, she massages her temple with frustration. Nothing can be done about spilled milk. “Those terms are fine, but a few more points should be made. If this company decides to quarry another ink maker, we will be at a loss. Those free deliveries would be pointless. Let me contact headquarters, I’m not in the position to finalize a financial agreement like that. In the meantime, I suggest you contact my buyers as a courtesy, not a negotiation.” Their conversation ends after the director agrees. Gail huffs before turning toward both delivery crews, “I don’t want my men anywhere near the barrels that were unloaded. Penny Blots’ workers can load the truck.” It would be a disaster if one of her subordinates damaged a barrel, so she’s avoiding that issue by eliminating the possibility. If something happens, cameras will show who damaged the goods. Penny Blots is in debt, and she doesn’t want to give them a reason to fine this company. Luckily, everything is put up without error and the delivery team leaves as soon as the chance arrives. It’s beyond her how they could load several hundred barrels onto the wrong trucks. Does nobody at that company look over files? This is giving her a headache. Ah, files! She looks toward her office, deciding it would be a good idea to email the corporate office before making a call. After all, it’s hard to deny things stated in emails. “This is going to be a fun week,” her voice drips with sarcasm as she walks past her assistant manager to the office.