Tea Leaves and White Pearls


Match Eleven: Game:

This isn't a healthy game that they play. However, she does not know how to stop it before it gets out of hand. They will have a long night going over papers tonight. She knows they have crossed the line once before. Ju's determined not to do that again. Yet, attraction has a strange way of working itself through its victims.

Yao placed the documents on the table. "That wedding last week put us straight into the black." Ju nodded at him as she had her lips pressed together.

"Yes," she replied. Yao tilted his head with a perplexed look on his face.

"Am I making you uncomfortable somehow?" he asked. His partner jerked her head upwards with a blank stare.

"Hm?" she asked. The young clan leader's ponytails swung back and forth as she shook her head. "No, no!" she tried to lie. Yao rested his hands on hers and the game began again.

"If something is on your mind," the man calmly told her, "Talk to me." She tried not to look into his nurturing brown eyes. You're trying to snare me again. I won't fall for it this time; I won't! His touch made her heart race faster than her brain.

"Could you please not touch me?" she asked in a small voice. Yao's mouth dropped into a little frown.

"I'm sorry?" he asked. Ju pulled back her hands and shuddered.

"What's the matter?" Yao asked. She rose to her feet and rushed out of the office.

"Ju?" he asked as the door swung closed. She held in the bathroom for close to ten minutes. Ju ran the water in the faucet to clear her head. She took in slow breaths to regain control. The poor soul isn't doing too well with this game. Ju wished that she had the advantage in this tango. Her main problem in this case was age; she's too young to fully master attention and box it away. Yao on the other hand has had thousands of years to possess control. That itself made this game all the more dangerous.

I don't think I can handle this, Ju thought as she shook her head. She dropped her head as she figured that the only way out of this was to tell the truth. No stalling with it; just come out and say it. Ju gave herself a minute before marching back out to the office. Yao looked up when he heard the door close. Ju held onto the door knob behind her.

"Have you calmed down now?" her partner asked. Ju lifted her head and tightened up her resolve.

"Listen, it's about the other night," she began in a steady tone. Yao raised an eyebrow at her.

"What about it?" he asked. Ju clutched onto the door knob tighter behind her.

"That…" she started to say as she struggled with her words. They sounded so much better in her head. However, she would feel much better coming out with it now than never.

"That was a mistake," Ju began again, "And it will never happen again; alright?" To her surprise, Yao gave her a small nod.

"Fair enough," he said, "I understand." A confused look came over his younger partner's face.

"You do?" she asked.

"Yes," Yao said, brushing it all off. Ju took a huge breath out.

"Okay then," she said, "Thanks." The young partner walked over to the desk and took her seat. Yao pulled out a planner and shoved it open before her.

"Panda Luck is ordering ten rolls of silk from and want it delivered to them by Monday," he told her. Ju read over the order for herself and nodded.

"Anything brand in particular that they want?" she asked.

"They only said they wanted the most expensive brand that you had in your storage building," Yao answered.

"I think I have just the thing that they crave," she said with a proud nod, "When do we get to meet with them?"

"Saturday morning," her partner said, "Is that okay with you?"

"That will work just fine," she said sitting back in her chair. They avoided this round of the game today, but next time does not look so promising for the Wasteland is hungry and wants to drain everything that these lovers have to afford.

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