The next day I spent getting ready for the fight and my interview at Kingsley Publishing. I was nervous beyond belief and the boys noticed it.
The added stress of Oliver and his gang was getting to me too.
I had been agitated all day and even Jay had tried to keep me calm but all it ended up being was me in a rage with my punch bag as I took it out on something inanimate. His constant flirting wasn’t helping me at all as I still felt the sting of Lucy cheating on me and I just wasn’t ready. Or maybe I just didn’t like him the same way… I was confused, I had so much going on my brain was a mess.
Soon enough it was the day of the fight and I woke up groggily as I made my way down the stairs to find the boys sitting up at the breakfast bar.
“There she is” Toby smiles.
“I don’t think I can do this today Toby…” I sigh.
“Yes you can, you’ll smash the interview, go for the fight and smash King. Then we’ll bring you home and celebrate” He says.
“I mean, you don’t have to fight…” Nathan says as I chuck a spoon at his head, that misses and hits the fridge.
“Violent much?” Bobby laughs.
“I’m doing the fight, it’s the interview and Oliver that I’m worried about!” I growl as Nathan raises his hands in mock surrender.
“You will be fine in the interview, you’re smart, they’d be stupid not to take you. I still can’t believe you refused university you could have been anything you wanted to” Nathan replied.
“University was not me Nathan” I reply as I thank Toby for the food he passed me.
“Eat then go shower and get dressed. Your new suit is hanging on the back of your door. We’ll have to leave soon” He says as I nod, my stomach was filled with butterflies of nerves.
“Stop worrying. You’ll be ok” Bobby places a hand on mine with a smile before I start eating.
An hour later and Toby is driving me to the interview in my tailor-made ladies suit. The black trousers and jacket fitted me perfectly, I looked great and I felt incredible in it as I thanked the boys as they had bought it for me.
“There it is” Toby points to the huge building in front of us, it was a recently built building, it was still shiny and looked grand in between all the old-fashioned shops.
“Wow…It’s huge” I gasp.
“That’s what she said…” Toby mumbles with a smirk as I laugh and smack his arm playfully.
“You’re so gross” I smirk, and he laughs.
“Go on kid, go smash the interview, you’ve got this. I’ll be right out here when you’re done” He smiles as I hug him quickly, grab my bag and head into the building.
“Can I help you dear?” An older lady says at the front desk with a kind smile.
“Oh, yes please, I have an interview here today, my name is Katrina Smoak” I answer, she smiles and begins tapping at her computer.
“Oh, for the personal assistant job for Mr Kingsley, you’re a very lucky girl, he isn’t seeing many people, he’s a very picky man” She smiles.
“I didn’t know it was for an assistant for him personally, I just thought it was for the company…” I bit my lip, suddenly more nervous than before.
“Don’t worry dear, he’s very kind, I promise. Don’t be nervous. Now go up to the eighth floor and take a seat in the waiting room, you’ll be called on soon” She smiles and waves as I make my way to the lift.
I was beyond nervous, I had never had an interview and didn’t know what to expect and now knowing it was to be his own personal assistant, I felt like this was absolutely crazy!
“Hold the lift!” A man says as I stop the doors from shutting and he smiles at me.
He is drop dead gorgeous, his smile makes my heart melt as I look over his body, he’s built, like his muscles must be struggling under that suit, I’m pretty sure there are tattoos peeking out from underneath but I can’t see them enough, he winks as I blush that he caught me looking and begins adjusting his tie with a cocky smirk as I notice we are going to the same floor.
“Interview?” He says, his voice deep, but weirdly familiar.
“Yes” I nod with a smile.
“Well, good luck sweetheart” He says with a smirk as the doors open and we get out.
Something about that smirk seemed awfully familiar too, he walks into one of the offices and I completely disregarded it.
I found myself alone in the waiting room, my leg bouncing with nerves.
“Miss Smoak?” A tall, gorgeous, red-headed lady comes from an office nearby as I smile and follow her to another office.
The same office the man had gone into from the lift…Oh shit…
“Good Morning Miss Smoak, I’m Mason Kingsley. Pleased to meet you” He says with a smirk as I shake his hand and take a seat opposite him as the woman leaves.
“Thank you Jenny” He calls out to her with a smile as she shuts the door.
“Nice to meet you too” I stammer.
“Are you nervous Miss Smoak?” He smiles as I take in his face, he has brilliant blue eyes that sparkle with a mischievous glint, his face was perfection, except for the small bruise that seemed to be fading against his eye…
“Yes…Sorry” I answer.
“No need. I looked over your application and although you lack in degrees from university, I see you have a lot of passion and that was what I liked about you. Now, in this position, if you are to get it, you would be doing many different tasks, from setting up meetings, to me needing your opinion on a book. Sometimes I need a little help. Now one thing I would like to ask which might help me decide is… What is your favourite book? And why?” He asks as he crosses a leg over the other and waits for my answer.
Was that really the all-important question…
“I can’t give you one…” I answer and he looks at me confused.
“Why ever not?” He asks, his brows furrow as he leans forward.
“I don’t like pick favourites when it comes to books. Every book is different, and you should be able to love them all without picking a favourite. It’s like judging a book by its cover, it’s a bias that shouldn’t exist. People might say they have a favourite, but opinions can change, and every person is different, why choose one book to favour and not just say that you enjoy all books. You may like certain aspects of the book but there will always be something you may not like.” I answer and hope I didn’t make a mistake.
“Do you judge books by their covers?” He raises a brow with a smile as he leans back in his chair once more.
“Never, you never know what it is beneath and why it is that way. If you don’t know the back story, you shouldn’t judge by the cover” I answer.
“Do you believe the same in people?” he questions.
“Yes, I believe the person that we show to the world and who we really are can be very different.”
“Do you show the world someone different to who you really are?” He sits forward with a smirk as my eyes dart around and spot a hoody in the corner of the room, I recognise that hoody from somewhere…but where…
“It depends on who I am with and where” I answer, and he nods.
“I understand…Katrina…” His eyes zero in on my name on the sheet and then they dart over my face as he frowns.
“Is there a problem?” I ask.
“Oh, no… I just recognised your name…Are you the daughter of Jacob Smoak…Niece of Benji Smoak?” He asks.
“Yes…” I answer.
“My apologies for your loss…They were great men…Miss…Smoak…” He begins chuckling.
“Is there something funny with my name?” I ask getting frustrated at this man.
“Are you a fighter like your family?” His eyes glint.
“I…Uh…No sir” I answer, I didn’t need my fighting to get in the way of this job opportunity.
“Good, not a good life for such a beautiful girl. Now, I’ll admit something, you were my only interview today…I wasn’t impressed with any other applicant, just you. So, having met you and talked to you, I’d like to offer you the job Katrina” He smiles as I sit back in shock.
“You’re serious…Just like that…” I gasp.
“Yes Kat, do you mind if I call you Kat?” He asks with a smirk.
Where had I seen that smirk before?!
“That’s fine” I smile as I blush as his eyes wander over me once more.
“Good. Now, I would usually start with paperwork straight away, however, I have another engagement tonight and need to get ready for that. So, how about we start Monday afresh?” He stands and comes to my side of the desk.
“That would be fantastic Mr Kingsley” I smile and shake his hand.
“Call me Mason” He smile.
“I can’t thank you enough, this means the world to me”
“I’m sure we’ll make a very good partnership here Kat. May I ask, have you ever been to one of your families fights?” He asks.
“No” I shake my head.
“Would you like to?” He smirks as if challenging me. But I can’t go with him, I’m fighting King tonight.
“I’m not sure. You don’t seem the type Mason”
“What did you say about not judging covers? Maybe my cover hides something a little more risqué” He winks.
“I don’t usually go to fights…My brothers don’t like me to go” I answer without looking at him.
“Just one, there’s one tonight, quite an exciting match really, between a man called King and a girl called Smoke. Said to be the fight of the year…I think he’ll win easily though; she seems a little weak” He smirks and it’s taking everything not to say something, he seems so cocky about the fight.
“Smoke…Interesting name…Not all girls are as weak as they may look. There’s a tale to every person, maybe you just haven’t heard her story yet” I smirk.
“Come to the fight, let’s figure out their stories together”
“Sorry, I can’t, I have plans” I smile.
“Shame. Maybe one day” He opens the door.
“Maybe. See you Monday Mason, enjoy the fight” I smirk as his eyes glint in the light.
“I’m sure I will. But shh, this is our little secret, no one else knows I go ok?” He puts a finger to his lips.
“Every book has secrets, I’ll keep yours” I smile with a nod.
“I hope to find out some of yours too Katrina Smoak” He says with a wave as I take a deep breath and get into the elevator.
As the doors close all I can see is his smirk…where had I seen it…King! That hoody was Kings too, he’d worn it at the fair… Mason Kingsley was King!
I was going to be fighting my new boss tonight…Did he know who I was? He saw me at the fair, but I didn’t know if he would put the rest of the pieces together.
“How did it go dear?” The lady at the desk asked.
“I got the job” I smiled at her, suddenly excited.
“Oh congratulations! My name is Rose by the way, if you ever need anything do come see me” She smiles and waves me off as I thank her and exit the building.
I’m stunned, my heart is beating like never before. King was my new boss… But there was no way I could let him off easy tonight because of that, I hope he didn’t take offence to me beating him at the fight…
“Well?!” Toby exclaims as I have been sat in the car for a minute already.
“I got the job…” I said.
“Woohoo! Congrats little sister!” He says and hugs me tight.
“What? Why are you not more excited?” he frowns.
“I am, I can’t wait to start…But I know who King is…Who he really is…” I say and his eyes widen.
“How?” He asks.
“I’m pretty sure he’s my new boss…” I gulp.
“Holy shit…King…Kingsley…That fits…Kat, we have to be careful, King doesn’t like his real life out there, he’s very secretive about it. We can’t tell anyone else. I will be talking to him tonight about everything with Oliver, but we will keep it our secret for now, ok?” He says as I nod, and he begins the drive home.
“He’s my boss…Can I beat him knowing I have to work with him on Monday?” I mumble.
“If anything, a little healthy competition might do you some good. Leave business separate from the ring, two lives just like your disguises” Toby says and I nod in agreement.
A different book cover for different lives…
Smoke and King, then Kat and Mason…What could go wrong?