The Girl who Fought to Provide

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Chapter 20

Soft breathing into my ear was the first thing I woke up to, the musk scent of Zade drifted through my nose, his hand rested on my stomach with his arm under my head.

“Good morning.” I said softly as his eyes fluttered open.

“Morning.” His sleepy voice did things to my insides and so did the crooked smile he had on his face.

“How was your sleep?” I asked as he wrapped his arms around my waist.

“With you in my arms, the best.” He smiled cheekily.

“Such the charmer.” I rolled my eyes playfully.

“Only for you.” He teased, laughing lightly.

“What’s the time?” I asked, stretching my body.

“12pm.” He said, staring at the gold watch on his wrist.

“JESUS.” I yelled, jumping out of his bed and running over to the door.

“What is the matter?” He asked, alert.

“Hair and makeup stylist will be here in a couple of minutes.” I groaned, dreading the long process Nadia explained.

“Have fun.” He called out as I rushed out of his room and into mine.

I showered quickly and got dressed in a t-shirt dress and threw my vans on before running out of my door and down to Nadia’s room.

“There you are, I was just coming to see where you were.” She sighed in relief.

“Sorry, I slept in.” I blushed.

“Don’t be, I’m jealous I didn’t.” She laughed. “Glam teams here, it’s going to be a very long afternoon.“.

Oh goody. I thought.

The ‘Glam Team’ consisted of three people, Jess the nails tech, Sal the hairstylist and Polly the beautician. Everything was set up in one of the huge lounges downstairs, it looked like a beauty salon was brought to us, well that’s what it was actually.

“What color is your dress?” Jess asked as she was deciding what color to paint my toe and fingernails.

“Red, it’s a bright red.” I answered.

Polly put three different facemasks on my face for different reasons, though those reasons weren’t explained but they did feel nice so I wasn’t complaining.

It was hard sitting here for hours getting pampered. I thought.

The three of them rotated between me, Nadia and Kenna. Nadia was getting her hair done and Kenna was getting her makeup done. I was next in line to have my hair done, I didn’t know what kind of hairstyle I wanted but it definitely had to be simple since I didn’t want to overdo the dress.

“I can’t tell if you’re enjoying this or you’re hating it.” Blaine laughed as he and Zade walked into our little salon.

“Hating it.” I sighed.

“Why?” They said in unison, tilting their heads to the side.

“I don’t know how they do this, it’s tiring and plain Boring with a capital B.” I huffed, pointing to Kenna and Nadia who were listening to music.

“I wish I could save you from it.” Zade laughed, giving me sympathetic look.

“I wish you could too.” I laughed.

“I’ll see you soon.” Zade kissed my forehead and headed out the door with Blaine.

An hour later I finally decided what kind of hairstyle I wanted, a tight slicked back bun, simple but very elegant and Sal added little diamond studs into the bun to give it ‘a little something’, his words exactly.

“What kind of makeup look are you going for?” Polly asked, the other girls were done and both looked stunning.

“Something natural with a little depth.” I said, hoping she’d know what I was talking about.

“Got it.” She said before getting started.

It took her all of 10 minutes to do my makeup and I was a little worried since it was so fast.

“You have perfect skin and you have natural contours to your face, everything about you is flawless, I didn’t need to do much and I figured you weren’t the type to wear so much makeup so I kept it minimal and sexy.” She explained with a genuine smile.

Nadia and Kenna rushed up to their rooms after they were done.

“Thank you, I appreciate all the work you guys did.” I said to the three, “You guys are great.“.

They all stared at me with slight shock but I didn’t give them much time to reply since I waved and quickly went up to my own room to get ready.

First thing I did was check my makeup for the first time, it was beautiful and everything I wanted, my skin looked flawless and radiant, my eyeshadow was simple with a light brown and dark brown fading into each other seamlessly and my lashes looked a little longer than normal making my warm honey colored eyes stand out more then they already did before, my lips were a nude-pink shade and my cheeks were enhanced more with a little bronzer and blush.

I quickly changed out of my clothes and moisturized the whole of my body, giving my legs and arms a slight glow in the light. Sliding into my dress, putting my diamond studs in and the matching diamond studded bracelet on.

“Ava, we got to go.” Nadia knocked on my door.

“Coming!” I yelled back, slipping my heels on and grabbing my clutch.

Swinging my door open, there stood Nadia in a baby blue grown, long in the back, a little shorter in the front. Blue butterflies and flowers covered the bottom of the dress, her hair in soft curls and her makeup was simple and very Nadia.

“You look beautiful.” I gushed, staring at her head to toe.

“You’re gorgeous.” She rushed out, clapping excitingly.

“Your dress is so different from what everyone else is going to wear, I love it! Come on, everyone is waiting.” She jumped before pulling me along with her.

Surprisingly the heels I wore were actually comfortable so it was easy to walk in them. I was a little nervous at the mention of my dress being different, I wanted to blend in with the crowd, never seen and never heard.

We descended the stairs, my arm wrapped tightly around Nadia’s for support; I really didn’t want to face plant right now.

“You two look stunning.” Silas and the rest of the boys complimented, their eyes wide.

“Every time I see you, it’s like I’m seeing your beauty for the first time all over again, so stunning.” Zade whispered, pulling my waist towards him.

“Have I ever told you that you look dashing in a navy blue suit? Even better in white sweats.” I whispered back, attempting to walk away from him but he soon pulled me back, a low groan resonating from his throat.

“Tease.” He whispered huskily.

“Only for you.” I said, flicking him off and walking out of the house with Nadia.

We all got into the waiting cars lined outside, two men dressed in all black suits sat in the front of each one so none of us had to drive. Nadia explained it was our security; they always had them when they went to public events like this one, for safety precautions.

Me, Nadia and Kenna rode together while the boys rode together.

Kenna looked stunning too, her hair in a braided updo, makeup was dark and full on and it suited her well, her dress was black and fitted her body perfectly, though it was too showy, it looked good on her.

Nadia filled me in on how the event worked and what to expect, to Nadia the event was going to be boring but I was giddy about it all, I couldn’t wait to see all the cars. The smile stayed on my lips the whole way there, butterflies filled my stomach to see Zade in his tailored suit again, he looked dangerous and sexy as hell in a navy blue suit, his dress pants, and dress shirt were a dark navy blue, his jacket was a velvet material and also a shade lighter than the rest of his outfit, his bow was red to match my dress, the navy blue went along with my red dress perfectly, our colors complimenting each other.

“What are you smiling at?” Nadia asked as we slipped out of the car.

“Nothing.” I said quietly.

“Come on let’s go in.” She said looping her arm in mine.

We arrived at a professional racetrack, the place was decorated grand with red carpet and fairy lights, the sun hadn’t set yet but everything still looked beautiful. The actual event was being held in the middle of the huge arena, as we got closer to the entrance I could see Maceo and Christopher waiting patiently, security at their sides.

Nadia didn’t wait for the others, so they were far behind the two of us.

“Dad!” She yelled, jumping into her father’s outstretched arms.

I smiled at their exchange, making me miss mine more, I wish he could see the person I’ve become.

“You two girls look stunning as always.” Christopher and Maceo said, smiling at the both of us warmly.

“Thank you.” We both blushed, waiting for the others to come.

The boys, Maceo and Christopher did the formal handshake to greet each other before we walked towards the entrance. Zade tried taking me from Nadia’s arm but Nadia threw him a dirty look every time he tried and I couldn’t stop giggling at the faces he pulled at her.

My phone started ringing as we were about to enter, it was Grayson so I excused myself from the group telling them I’ll see them in there and one of the guards hung back with me as I answered.

“Hey sis, I miss you.”

“I miss you more, how are your classes?” I smiled brightly into the phone.

“Everything’s great, I love it here.” He said, guilt clear in his voice.

“Hey, I’m so happy that you do, don’t worry about me Gray, I’m good as long as you’re happy.”

“I just wanted to give you a quick call, I missed your voice but I have to go, I’ll ring you tomorrow okay, love you.”

“Love you too, be safe.” I said before the line went dead.

And now I miss my brother. I thought.

Putting my phone back into my clutch, I walked back into the huge ballroom with the security guard behind me. I stood in the entranceway looking around for familiar faces.

“Do you know where they went?” I whispered to the security guard.

“No clue.” He said back.

Everyone turned to stare at the two of us, probably because I didn’t look like I was in the right place as every woman and girl in the room wore full-on gowns and here I was in my little red dress.

“Let’s walk around so we can find them.” The security guard said and I agreed by walking deeper into the room, eyes still watching me closely.

Maybe I have something on my face? I thought.

“Do I have something on my face?” I asked him.

He chuckled, shaking his head before guiding me deeper into the room, it was beautiful, huge chandeliers hung from the ceiling, waiters rushed around giving out the champagne and mini food, tables decorated fancy and the music in the background was a live band performing on a stage in the back.

“Ava, over here.” Zade’s deep voice called out.

I spun around and headed right towards him, he stood with Maceo, Chris and other people I didn’t recognize but I kept my eyes on Zade, his arms flexing every time he moved.

Where’s the champagne, Charles. I thought.

“Hey, who rang you?” Zade asked, his voice soft as ever.

“Gray, he just wanted to check up on me.” I smiled as his hand rested on my waist.

“Ava I’d like you to meet our good friend Lucian De’vore and his son Killian.” Maceo said, gesturing to two men standing next to him and Chris.

“Hi, it’s nice to meet you.” I smiled, waving at the both of them.

Lucian stared at me as if fascinated by my presence, a charming smile stretched across his face before he held his hand out for me to shake. I shook it firmly like any other handshake I’ve done, the surprise in his green eyes was visible.

“Pleasure to meet you Ms. Vice.” He said, his voice strong with an accent.

“Likewise.” I blushed, nodding.

“Nice to meet you.” His son Killian said, his hazel eyes searching mine.

Killian looked a lot like his father, tall, face structure to die for and dirty blonde hair, the pair of them were extremely attractive but Zade for sure held my interest more than anyone I’ve met.

“And you too.” I smiled.

“I’m going to sit with Nadia and the boys.” I ran my fingers over Zade’s and squeezed.

“I’ll be over soon.” He gave me his breathtaking smile, letting me go over to the table the rest sat at.

“Ava tell them that black isn’t a color.” Nadia huffed as I sat down next to her.

“Black is not a color.” I said, laughing at the face she pulled at the boys.

“Although you are right, we consider black a color.” Jasper spoke, his English accent was strong when he said certain words.

“You five are impossible.” She sighed frustratingly.

“I had the same argument with your brother, just agree and walk away.” I laughed.

We all engrossed in conversation about everyone’s fashion sense, the boys and their opinions on the girls who dressed in tight and uncomfortable dresses were hilarious though we snickered to ourselves so no one could hear us, people stared at us from time to time but we never paid them any mind. Kenna was off talking to some guys with a friend she made. Zade stood talking to Lucian, Killian, Maceo, and Chris still at this point. Zade had his back to me, so the intense stare I felt couldn’t be him.

“Ava want to come check out the cars?” Blaine asked he and the boys stood.

“Yes!” I jumped from my chair giddy.

“I’m staying here, you guys go ahead.” Nadia said, playing on her phone texting Emma.

“Let’s go.” Blaine and Silas said holding their arms out to me so I slipped my arms in both of theirs and walked between them.

We went through a door leading out into the racecourse and cars lined in an empty car park next to the building, slipping my arms from out of theirs; I rushed towards the cars examining them closely.

“I’ve never seen anyone so happy to see a car.” Silas deadpanned, staring at me strangely.

“Me and my father use to go out for ice cream and go sit on the highway to see if we could spot cool cars, it was a hobby of ours.” I explained, switching between each car that caught my attention.

They followed me around the car park as I told them a little on each car we passed.

“This car looks awesome.” Drew gushed a few cars over from where we stood, rushing to where he was I squealed in awe.

“Are you okay? I think you might be coming down with something.” Silas joked.

“This car looks rare.” Drew said, running his hands along it before I slapped his hand away from it.

“Because it is rare, don’t touch it we don’t want to damage it or something, this car costs more than the other cars put together.” I said, putting my hand on my hips.

“What do you know about this car?” A deep voice asked from behind us, making me spin around to the source of the voice.

“Oh hi, we didn’t touch it.” I said, holding my hands up.

“Don’t worry, they have enough money to buy another one.” Zade laughed, winking at Lucian and Killian.

“There’s only two in the world and the owner of the other won’t let it slip from his hands so really they can’t.” I teased, sending Zade a sly smile.

“You seem to know much about this car, tell me about it.” Lucian said, his eyes held a glint in them.

“Koenigsegg CCXR Trevita, Aluminum V8, double overhead camshaft. 0 to 100 per hour in 2.8 seconds. Top speed is over 410. The fuel tanks are integrated for optimal weight distribution and safety, the hardtop is detachable and it’s designed for track racing but it’s legal to drive on roads too.” I beamed, placing my hand into Zade’s.

“Anyone can get that knowledge from Google.” Killian rolled his eyes.

“I suppose they can.” I shrugged.

“Have you driven one before?” Lucian asked, amazement was covering everyone’s face, including Zade, Maceo, and Chris; I thought I told them I liked cars.

“How in the world would I be able to drive one if there’s only two? And I sure as heck haven’t driven the one that’s currently sitting in Dubai.” I laughed softly.

“Good point.” Lucian laughed along with me and everyone else soon joined in.

People exited the building and into the car park to look at the cars as well as we talked.

“Would you like to test drive it?” Lucian asked, his eyes lighting up.

“What! No! She’s not driving my car.” Killian interjected.

“You’re too sweet but It’s okay.” I smiled at Lucian, acting as if I didn’t hear Killian.

“You can definitely take it for a test drive now.” Lucian said through clenched teeth towards Killian.

“Fine but I’m coming with.” Killian said throwing me the keys.

A big smile broke out on to my face as I jumped in place making everyone chuckle.

“Be safe and go slow please.” Zade said, pulling me closer to him.

“Always.” I whispered, pecking his lips and running towards the car and sliding in.

“Do you even know how to drive this?” Killian asked from the passenger seat.

“I guess you’ll find out soon enough.” I said, driving the car to one end of the racetrack.

The racetrack was very long, almost like a plane strip but I guess it needed to be since it was, of course, a racetrack for track cars.

“Why are you going so slow, I know you’re a girl and all but at least go over 30.” He said, staring at the side of my head.

“Ready?” I asked, raising an eyebrow.

He only scoffed and I smirked in reply, revving the engine and I quickly dropped the hammer. The tires scream for every ounce of grip they can find, using the paddle shifters to switch gears, the car responded effortlessly. This car was ridiculously fast and since it has a supercharger as opposed to turbo, there isn’t a kick every time I shift. The car zoomed down the racetrack.

Killian watched me with an intense gaze, “Slow down.” He called out.

“We haven’t even reached 400 yet.” I argue.

“Jesus!!” He calls out.

I push the car, easing my way up to 410.

“Jesus!” He yells out again.

“What don’t trust me?” I asked, slamming on the brakes and drifted the car around the curves of the track.

“No, you’re a girl.” He says flatly but his eyes held an emotion I couldn’t decipher.

I finally get the car to 420, my heart fluttered at the excitement coursing through my veins.

Once I got close enough to where everyone stood, I slam on the brakes, downshift and swing the car 180 degrees to prove a point to him and got out, I walked around to his door with my heels clicking against the pavement.

“Thanks.” I smiled, throwing him his keys back and walking to Zade who stood next to everyone, their mouths slack.

“What was that?” Zade asked, his voice husky.

“I told you I like fast cars.” I smiled sheepishly.

“God, you’re sexy.” He whispered in my ear, pulling my body close to his front.

“So are you Mr. Noels.” I winked.

“You didn’t say you could drive like that.” The boys said, their facial expressions were in a hurt kind.

“Hey, I don’t give away all my secrets.” I said, laughing lightly.

“Jesus, what can’t you do?” Maceo and Chris stared at me wide-eyed.

“I can’t bake, baking isn’t my strong suit.” I joked at the two.

“You’re a very interesting young lady.” Lucian said, his smile small.

“You’re a badass.” Killian whistled, staring me up and down.

My badass.” Zade said with an edge to his tone, his eyes narrowed.

Someone’s mad. I thought.

Zade guided me as we all got ushered back into the ballroom for speeches and what not. I tried to listen to the speeches but Nadia and the boys were distracting as we played a game of knots and crosses, childish but at least we were having fun. Nadia kept pointing to Killian every time she caught him staring at me but I never paid him any attention, he was starting to creep me out.

The speeches finished and the waitresses soon served dinner, it was a 7-course meal, by the 3rd I could not eat any more and the boys weren’t letting me hear the end of it, saying I was a weakling for not pushing through all the food but I saved space for dessert. I badly wanted to kick my heels off and sag down into my seat, it’s been a long day and all I wanted to do was go to sleep with Zade next to me.

“Want to go dance?” Zade whispered as I straightened in my seat.

“With you? Always.” I breathed, placing my hand in his, my heart fluttered against my chest.

“That’s what I like to hear Ms. Vice.” He laughed teasingly.

We dance close, his hard body pressed against mine, his lips against my ear and his hand on my lower back.

“You’re tired aren’t you.” He laughed as I nuzzled into his neck, breathing in his scent.

“Yes, it’s tiring doing a whole day of ‘preparing’.” I said, fighting against a yawn.

“We’ll be leaving soon.” He said, pushing me away from his body and making me spin in a circle before pulling me back towards him.

I laughed as he dropped his hands to my waist, his grey pools gazed down at me, wrapping my arms around his neck, and he dipped down, his eyes asking a silent question, nodding a quick yes, he presses his soft-luscious lips to mine in a passionate kiss.

“Mmm, watermelon.” He winked as I reached up, wiping my lipstick off of his lips.

“You’re so silly.” I pushed at his chest, giggling at his playfulness.

We soon returned to the table where Nadia gushed saying she shipped us from the start, we both shook our heads her way and smiled at her enthusiasm towards us.

“Thank you all for coming.” Lucian said after giving Maceo, Christopher, Zade, and the boys a handshake each.

“Thank you for having us.” Nadia said and I soon thanked them too.

I looped my arm into Nadia’s as we started walking behind our security guards. The both of us were exhausted.

“Nadia, can she ride with me this time?” Zade plead but Nadia hung on to me and I didn’t mind, I was too tired to interact with their antics.

“See you at home.” Zade kisses the side of my head and disappeared with the boys.

Kenna got in first, Nadia and then me, as soon as I got into the car, I was out like a light switch.

I am jostled awake as Zade lifts me into his arms.

“Hey.” He murmurs, “You fell asleep in the car.” He softly kisses the side of my jaw.

“Sorry, I was so tired.” I say sleepily, wrapping my arms around his neck and breathed in his scent.

Oh, you smell so good. I thought.

He carried me back to my bedroom and laid me down, pulling my shoes off and also my jewelry.

“Can I sleep in your room tonight?” I asked between a tired yawn.

“I was hoping you would.” He said, his cheeks coated with a shade of pink.

“Are you blushing?” I gasped, running my hand over his cheek.

“You blush all the time.” He pushed me down and hovered over the top of me.

“Pink looks good on you.” I winked, laughing lightly.

“Kiss me then.” His eyes darted between my eyes and watermelon-covered lips.

Wrapping my hands around his neck, I pull him closer so his face is only a breath away from mine.

“This is the moment where you kiss me but I do admit the view from up here is the best I’ve seen.” Zade said, his eyes resting on my chest area.

Pressing my lips to his, he responded fully. Running my tongue along his bottom lip, he gives me entrance and a low growl rumbled from his chest as we fight for dominance but he of course wins before we both pull away breathless.

“Go shower and get into comfortable clothes, I’ll go shower too.” He said huskily against my lips.

“Okay.” I nodded, as he pulled me upright.

I headed into my bathroom and showered quickly, taking all my makeup off, changing into an oversize t-shirt and blow-dried my hair so I wouldn’t dampen Zade’s pillows or anything.

Opening Zade’s door slowly, he laid in his bed sleeping already, his chest moving up and down slowly as he breathed. Shutting the door behind me quietly, I tiptoe my way over to him, climbing into bed.

“Hey, come here.” His voice sleepy, he pulled me to his side, tucking me under the blanket comfortably.

“Go to sleep princess.” He whispered, kissing my head.

I fell asleep almost immediately.

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