36 | The Ball
I was applying highlighter on my cheek-bones when Ava burst inside my room with a grim expression on her face.
I stop mid-way with the brush still in my hand and before I can ask her what’s wrong, she blurts out saying, “I slept with Andres”
For a moment I thought I went deaf after hearing what she said. My eyes widen with a shock when I finally register her words and I stare at her dumbfounded.
What the actual fuck?!
“When…how?!” I wave my hand at her and she sighs like a child who had her first kiss. Except she wasn’t happy, she looked torn with her deeds.
“I know I know it sounds so… I don’t even know what to name it. I was angry with Noah when I saw Camille exit his room last night when I was fetching water for myself. Andres also saw it, we were talking, then I kissed him, then we were making out and it felt so good to kiss him, that I totally…had sex with him” She whispers the last part so softly that I almost don’t hear her. Her face looked baffled as if she can’t believe what she did.
I totally understand her. Andres was a real catch and I couldn’t blame her. If it wasn’t for Blaze, I would’ve totally shagged him. No wait, never mind. I wouldn’t do that. He was hot but not my type.
Suddenly a thought enters my head and I question her.
“Were you guys by any chance were at the library last night?”
“Library? No, we weren’t” She answers me with a frown and I rest my chin on my hand thinking.
“Why, Pheebs? Is everything alright?”
I turn to look at her and say, “I don’t know. It’s just that Blaze and I were there last night and I had this feeling that we were being watched”
I could swear that there was another person present in that room last night. I even probed Blaze with this question but he brushed it off nonchalantly saying that it was nothing and that I was being paranoid for no reason.
Suddenly, my phone vibrates, alerting me of an incoming text and I decided to check it later. I had a feeling that it was from Blaze which was exactly the reason why I was avoiding it. Last night was just a distraction from my momentary resolve. I was also avoiding him because I knew that as soon as I’ll see him, I’d be itching all over to lure an explanation out of him. As much as I was desperate to know the real story behind his past behavior, I dreaded the truth.
Also, I wasn’t going to let him off the hook so easily this time.
Focusing my attention back on Ava, I frown when I see her smirking at me widely.
“What’s with the look?” I ask her bemused and she throws her head back laughing which confuses me even further.
“I can’t believe this. Phoebe Carter, you are such a naughty bitch. I mean the library really? People go over there for reading and acquiring education for fuck’s sake! By the way, I never asked. How good is he?” She asks with curiosity and scoots closer to me by sitting on the edge of the bed.
I place my fan brush on the vanity table in front of me and laugh.
It was true. I wasn’t very keen on having sex because it was never my top priority but I did have a plethora of fantasies for sure. What went down last night wasn’t predicted and it just simply happened in the heat of the moment. After we came down from our post-coital high, I exited the library as soon as I could.
A part of me ached to be close to him but the rational part of me swatted away that idea from my head.
“I legit get wet seeing him I think that’s enough to know how good he is. Anyways, what happened next? You know…after you and Andres did it” I wiggle my eyebrows at her suggestively to steer the topic away from me which works when I see her cheeks stain with a blush as she tries to hide her coy smile.
“He was such an expert, ugh! I think I almost forgot my name while he was fucking me. But I kind of freaked out after we were done, so I rushed out of his suite” She says dejectedly.
Before I can ask her why she continues, “I just felt so confused. Sure he was good fuck and all but he wasn’t Noah. He will never be Noah and now I hate myself for being so vulnerable. Is it wrong for me to want someone so badly? I mean I just don’t understand. Why is he still with Camille after all the ways she made him suffer? They are in a toxic relationship for fuck’s sake!” She bursts out and I instantly feel bad for her.
If anyone deserves to be happy, it’s Ava. The girl has gone through a lot of bad things. Heck! She keeps up with my fucked-up ass. Someone should give her a damn award for that.
I scratch my dark brown hair; feeling confused and cupped her face to make her look at me.
“Do me a favor. Forget about Noah, forget about Andres. You don’t owe any of the shit. All of you are consenting adults. So act like one. I get it that you love Noah and trust me when I tell you, one day he will come begging for your love but he’ll be too late to win you over. This is reality Ave. Life isn’t a fucking fairy tale. Relationships are not a bed of roses. Everything isn’t rainbows and sunshine. We out of all the people know this better. One day you will find someone who will love you for who you are. It might even be Noah too. You just never know. But don’t waste your time thinking about them. Just live in the moment” I say to her gently and she sighs.
Just live in the moment…
My words hit me right back and I think vaguely, should I also just live in the moment?
“You’re right. Although whoever this guy is, he better hurry up. I’m not getting any younger you know” She states and I howl with laughter at her humor and soon she joins me.
I inwardly sigh with relief knowing that my best friend is back to her happy self.
I know many will think that I’m being an ungrateful bitch for cursing Noah even after he was with me through a lot of things and specifically for offering me this project along with Ava.
I was more than grateful for that but justice was justice. Both of them were my closest fried but what Noah did was wrong. Maybe I was over-reacting but insulting someone in front of everyone for a person as bitchy as Camille was a very low blow.
“Why the fuck aren’t you dressed yet?!” Ava’s screech breaks me out of my reverie and I look at her with horror when I notice that she is sporting a stunning pale pink Dior gown. The fabric draped her petite frame and her raven black hair was styled artfully on one side of her shoulder making her look like a goddess whilst I was still in my silk robe.
I looked at myself in the mirror and smiled with approval. The color of my green eyes was popping thanks to the smoky eye look and my face blended perfectly with the correct amount of makeup. I wasn’t a huge fan of makeup but during occasions like this, I made sure to transform myself with the help of it.
The upper part of my wavy hair was straightened and the lower part was falling in loose ringlets thanks to the hairstylist who arrived during the afternoon.
“Stop worrying, I just need to wear my dress and heels. My make-up is already done” I reassure her and she sighs with relief.
“Thank fuck for that. By the way, you are going to the venue with me. We’ll be riding the same car. I don’t want to be around anyone who isn’t you. Not for the next two days” She points her finger at me sternly and I nod my head to show my agreement.
In fact, I wasn’t in the mood to go with anyone else either. Not even Noah. Just like Ava, I was kind of ignoring him too and decided to let him stew for some time. Knowing him, he’ll dump Camille as soon as he notices me avoiding him.
I know I sounded a bit unfair but then again, I was never the type to live with a book of morals.
The palace was truly a sight to behold, especially at this time of the night.
This whole lavish ball from the outside looked just like some normal event with rich people flashing their money and trying to gain the title of being the highest bidder. The Hunter’s and the Russo’s were ruthless but they weren’t heartless. This auction ball was just a façade to get money for people in need and the best way to acquire that money was having useless greedy men cowering at your feet from all the intimidating power. A trap to strip them of their money, it was obvious that these worthless fools wanted to flash their money over women and useless things like artifacts just to get some attention from powerful businessmen. But to me, it all seemed like a scheme.
A good scheme
Those idiots would do anything to grab people’s attention, even if it meant throwing away millions of dollars for things they can’t even pronounce.
Well, that was my psychology but whatever the real deal was. It didn’t matter as long as poor people were receiving help.
Breaking out of my daze, I grin with satisfaction when I scan the place. Expensive lines of cars were parked outside in the directed spot. The drive was decorated with orange and yellow lanterns. In the early evening light, they looked magical as if I stepped inside some enchanted fairy world taken out of a children’s storybook.
Walking past the lawn, I was grateful to see the guards holding the paparazzi outside. I wasn’t a huge fan of pestering press.
I mean who wants their personal life captured for the whole world to see?
It was surprising to see such few amounts of reporters given to the lavishness of the Ball but then I remembered Blaze mentioning that we both shared the same type of opinion towards the press.
Speaking of Blaze, I noticed my phone filled with his voice-calls while I was riding with Ava inside the Audi SUV that escorted us here.
Ava was steered away by Andres in a heated conversation as soon as she stepped outside the car, which left me alone to face the ball all by myself.
After getting my picture snapped by one of the photographers at the entrance, I look behind me to check if the train of my midnight blue dress.
The dress was quite simple but alluring nonetheless.
The midnight blue color of the fabric contrasted perfectly with my pale cream complexion and hugged my curves perfectly like a second skin. The bordered sequined plunging neckline of my dress showed just the perfect amount of cleavage teasingly which was enough to make men stop their conversation just to get a look at me and this did not make me comfortable. Instead, it only boosted my confidence up a notch. The slit of my dress showed off legs but apart from that, I was grateful for it because at least I can roam around freely and quickly. Just perfect for quick getaways in case I see someone I want to avoid.
One of the passing waiters offers me a flute of champagne which I accept gratefully to calm my raging nerves.
I was feeling extremely nervous for the first time in my life. I wasn’t a stranger to these types of events but I always attended them with my parents or with my friends by my side. But being stranded alone in midst of such glamor, I felt a bit uneasy.
Sipping on my glass of Cristal lightly, I almost choked when my eyes land on the gorgeous duo descending the staircase.
Blaze looked absolutely mouth-watering in his tux. His normal messy straight hair was swept to one side making him look regal and sophisticated hot beyond words.
But that wasn’t what irked me, what made me boiling with anger was the woman who was beautiful blonde plastered by his side. His arm was around wrapped around her waist possessively and the sight made me crumble with pain on the inside.
They looked like they were sharing some private joke as they laughed discreetly and when his eyes landed on mine, I looked away feeling a piece of me die right then and there.
A/N - Who do you think this new woman is? Let me know your thoughts. Also, I'll be posting a bonus chapter with Blaze's POV soon.
Stay tuned for the next update!