The predator

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It was a dream job. It was her dream job.

When she called the number on the advertisement, the man asked if she was good looking. Surely it was just an image thing; after all he was a high profile professional photographer. The receptionist was the first point of contact. Good looking certainly would be a benefit to his business, wouldn’t it? Maybe she should have known better.

She was one of many interviewed. She was offered the job. It really was a dream position. Or was it?

She left her other position and started, full of enthusiasm and dreams for her future. All was great to begin with. He was so kind, so lovely and generous. He even drove her home sometimes in his expensive Porsche.

Celebrities visited the studio often, lovely couples came to plan the wedding shoot of their dreams, families came for memorable portraits. Her job was wonderful. Or so it seemed.

A few weeks later he began teaching her more about photography, she loved it. One day as he was showing her how to mask negatives in the dark room, he kissed her. She didn’t know how to respond at first. Shocked, surprised and maybe just a tiny bit flattered. After all she was barely 17 and he was almost 40.

Next time it was more than a kiss; it was touching and in ways that no 40 year old should touch a 17 year old, in places reserved only for very intimate relationships. She was torn. She loved her job, she sort of liked the attention, but at the same time it made her feel a little sick in the stomach. She was not a virgin or even slightly naive, but it felt wrong, so very very wrong.

He was engaged, she had a boyfriend. “What they don’t know won’t hurt them” he used to whisper in her ear, over and over.

He started asking her to perform lewd acts in the studio while he photographed her. She laughed him off, but deep down she know she couldn’t do that for forever.

But her job was so amazing, most of the time. Surely she could avoid being in the dark room with him and just do her job? There was another photographer that worked there, should she tell him? Should she tell her mother? Her boyfriend?

Eventually one night, she told both of them. Shock, horror, disgust, upset, terrible emotions and distressing conversations followed.

She never returned to her job again.

He was a predator.

Maybe she should have known better.

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