by Simon Graham

Dirk’s ad for an assistant didn’t ask for a CV or cover letter, just a short email explaining one’s interest in writing. I said I liked the idea of learning a little bit about a lot of things, rather than a lot about one. Perhaps a pedestrian mentality for someone fresh out of high school, but Dirk told me my message stood out. “All the other applications were bullshit,” he said.

Dirk was in his mid-thirties. He had sandy curls and, despite now working as a finance writer, the firm hands of an Australian raised in the country. He wore dark sunglasses the day we first met, but this funereal veneer was betrayed by his mouth. His lips were quicksilver. A warm smile could morph into a vicious sneer and back again. 

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