I have a bit of a conundrum. I work in a field that doesn't have a lot of jobs available, and we're often forced to kind of patch things together if we want year-round, full-time employment (which I do). There is one big place in my geographical area (I'm not really willing to move) that offers the holy grail—year-round, full-time. I've been hoping to snag one of the positions after I graduate this spring.

Now, here's the thing: I know a bunch of people who work in the position that I'd want, and I really like them all and would love to work with them. I also know a couple of people higher up, and same story. However, there's one lady (M), who could end up being my direct boss, who could cause some serious problems for me (even to the point where I worry that she might sway the people who would be hiring me—her superiors).

About a year and a half ago, one of my best friends (N) was unexpectedly broken up with by her long-term boyfriend (O). Around the same time, M was broken up with her long-term boyfriend as well. We'd all worked together in the past, and were kind of friendly. M and N became a lot friendlier a lot quicker, as they could commiserate and support each other through the difficult time. BUT M had always had a thing for O. She ended up gathering a bunch of information from N, using it to buddy up to O, and sleeping with him. Now, obviously N didn't have any claim on O any more, but it was a really shitty thing for a friend to do. So our group of close friends ended up stopping hanging out with M (we hadn't been especially close with her to begin with), and just generally disliked her.

M and I certainly never had any kind of direct confrontation, and I would never try to do that. But she obviously knows that what she did was wrong, and that it made some people (including me) really dislike her. Obviously, if I had to work with her, and especially if she was my boss, I could be professional and cordial and all that good stuff.

But she's been telling people that work with her that we've just never gotten along, etc. This especially sucks right now as there was rumour that they were going to contract me for a short-term project, and I don't want her blacklisting me. I also really REALLY don't want her to do that in the spring when I'll really need the job. The hiring decisions wouldn't technically be up to her, but she could hold a lot of sway.

Thoughts? Advice?