Royal Pain in the Ass

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Chapter 12

Christine and I went back in and spent the remainder of the evening pretending as if nothing had happened. I noticed Angelica and Ethan were gone, so were my father and Millie. It looked like Lana and Chad had disappeared along with Ian and Amelia. Christine brought me over to Fiore who gave me a knowing smile.

“Let’s dance!” Fiore took my hand and led me out to the dance floor. I couldn’t help but laugh. Something about being around Fiore just put you in a better mood. “Ethan’s a price.” She muttered, just loud enough for me to hear before she spun me out then curled me back in. “So, for the rest of the night, to avoid other pricks like him, I am your date.”

“What about your date?”

“Eh, he’ll deal or he’ll never see me again.” Fiore answered with a careless shrug. “It’s really that simple. Besides, I owe you one anyway.”

“How do you owe me one?”

“I let you get into so much trouble. I didn’t even think. So I will scare off all, hold on…”

A cute blonde boy came up. “May I cut in?”

“No. Go find your own girl. She’s mine.” Fiore snapped as she pulled me against her and wrapped a leg around my waist. “All mine.”

I laughed at his stunned expression as he stalked off. “That wasn’t polite.”

“I’m not known for being polite.”

“How do you get away with that?”

“Because I am Fiore. And they’re afraid of me. That helps more than you can imagine. Plus, they’ve figured out they can’t stop me. Remember, I use swords on the media, just imagine what I do without cameras. Now, alcohol, I think we both could use a drink.” Fiore led me around the dance floor and kept pouring wine down my throat every chance she got. She made sure I was having a great time, and I couldn’t help but laugh around her. Fiore was really something else. She basically classified people into three categories, wankers, losers, and friends. I was pleased to know I counted as a friend. Apparently it went somewhere along the lines of wanker, wanker, wanker, pretentious wanker, loser, wanker, friend, wanker, wanker, Christine, wanker friend and wanker. Fiore liked very few people, but she was undeniably good at making others like her.

At about three, Xavier came over to us. “Lady Fiore, I must interrupt. I hate to say it, but it’s time for me to steal Lady Juliet for the night.”

“That’s ridiculous. She’s my date now, she can’t leave before I do.”

“Fiore, it’s three in the morning. I have to take her, sorry.”

“Juliet is my date, I will duel you for her.”

Xavier took my hand from Fiore and gave her a stern look. “I would prefer not to duel you. You may take her on another night soon, I promise. But a lady does need her sleep. Come now, the sun will be up soon.”

“I’m watching you.” Fiore warned. She motioned with her fingers from her eyes to Xavier as he led me away from Fiore and towards the waiting car.

Xavier helped me inside as I stumbled my way in the car. “Did you have fun?”

“Yeah, I really did.” I smiled. “I am so tired, come cuddle.” I giggled, definitely feeling the effects of the alcohol.


“Come cuddle, I want a pillow!” I laughed. I felt hot and sleepy and wanted to cuddle with someone. What can I say, I’m a cuddly drunk. “I’m sleepy.”

Xavier chuckled. “It’s almost half past three in the morning. Can’t blame you there.” Once Xavier had helped me get settled he sat opposite me in the limo. I kicked my shoes off and went over to his side. I curled up with my head in his lap. Xavier sighed, but didn’t make me move. Instead he started playing with my hair. I felt myself falling asleep. The next thing I knew I was being carried. I cuddled up next to his warmth. I felt myself falling asleep. The next thing I knew I was being carried. I cuddled up next to his warmth. “You smell nice…” I murmured. I heard a chuckle as someone laid me on a bed.

“Good night, Juliet.” I heard a soft murmur and then soft lips against my own. I was too tired to open my eyes, but I kissed them back. He pulled away too soon and he sighed. “Truly extraordinary…”

I woke up to Laurel shaking me gently. “Good morning, Juliet, you had a busy night.” She had a coy little smile on her face.

“What?” I asked as I thought back and it started coming back to me.

“You have a new headline, and your father is furious. You need to get up now.” Laurel warned as she held up a magazine.

American Debutant Abuses Aristocrat?

There was a picture with Ethan sporting my handprint. I groaned. “Awesome.” I got up and realized I was still in my dress from last night. “Will you help me out of this?”

Laurel unfastened the clasp and undid my zipper. I washed my face, threw on a pair of jeans and a t-shirt and went downstairs. James was waiting for me.

“Juliet,” He started, his voice that low, quiet anger. The kind where if you start speaking any louder it’s going to turn into shouting.

“Yes, James?”

“What is the meaning of what happened last night?” James asked as he threw down a newspaper with a similar headline and photo.

I couldn’t hold back a snort. “You really believe him? Fine, believe whatever you want.”

“Juliet!” James took a few calming breaths, his eyes showing the fury underneath. “My sister has requested me, I have an audience with the king. You do not understand what this means. I need to know what happened last night.”

“James, it looks like you’ve already made up your mind.”

“Angelica is in fits! You are my daughter, but so is she. I will not choose between the two of you, but I need to know what happened!” James demanded.

I paused and my eyes met his. “Who chose Ethan for Angelica?”

James blinked several times, as I caught him off guard. “Millie, why?”

“She made a bad choice. He doesn’t deserve her and he’s going to heart. Just thought you ought to know that.”

“Juliet, I’m losing what little patience I have left! Explain yourself.”

“I shouldn’t have to.” I muttered quietly as my own anger rose up. “I shouldn’t have to explain that the man your wife chose for your daughter is a lecherous creep. I shouldn’t have to explain that when that douche tried to make a pass at me, he insulted both me and your daughter. And then he was stupid enough to voice another insult. When I told him that I thought it was messed up, he insulted both of us again and I told him to shut his mouth and he shouldn’t talk that way about Angelica. I shouldn’t have to explain that I slapped him when he continued to mouth off and I lost my temper. And honestly, I hope it still stings. I shouldn’t have to explain, and I won’t apologize. Don’t ask that of me, it won’t happen. You can probably assume that everything he told you, except the slap, was reversed. Happy now?” I stormed off. No one wanted to believe the best of me, but they’re all happy to assume the worst.

To make my day better there was Millie, just waiting for me outside the parlor. “I will not let my daughter go through what I did. You stay away from Ethan. Do you hear me?” She growled at me.

“I don’t want to be within ten miles of the creep, not a problem. Quite frankly, neither should Angelica. I don’t know what you think is going on, but know this, the only interest I have in Ethan is if it involves a baseball bat meeting his face. I don’t think I’m being vague.”

“You are confined to your room until I deem otherwise.”

“Are you serious? You’re going to try to ground me?”

“You are going to be escorted there now. Xavier, see to it she does not leave her room.”

“Come on, Juliet.” Xavier started leading me by my elbow and I glared at him. “Really? You’re on her side?” I hissed.

“It was either I take you to your room or she has armed guards watch you.” Xavier warned as we turned the corner. “And I know you know how to sneak out of this place, she does not. I am on your side.”

“This sucks.” I groaned as I opened my door. I flung myself on the bed and sighed.

“Come now, it’s not that bad.”

“Millie is stupid.” I muttered into my pillow. I heard Xavier laughing. “And she’s setting her daughter up with a whore, well a man whore, somehow it seems less bad, but it’s not really…all I know is I can’t do anything to help…this is stupid…”

I felt the bed sink under Xavier’s weight. He started rubbing my back. “It’ll be alright, just relax.”

“What am I supposed to do?”

“For the moment nothing.”

“You’re a crappy advisor.”

“Oh? Is that so?”

“Yes. If you can’t give me the advice I want to hear, you suck at life.”

“I’m glad you think so highly of me.” Xavier laughed.

“Meh, I don’t think you’re a dunderhead anymore.”

“Oh? Well, I’m so flattered.”

“I could be like Fiore and just classify you as a wanker.”

“She said what about me?”

“Fiore qualifies people into about three categories, wankers, losers, and friends.”

“And I’m a wanker?”

“I don’t know, she didn’t classify you.” I shrugged. I looked up and propped my head up on my hand. “So I’m stuck here?”

“Yes, for now.”

“Did James agree?”

Xavier nodded. “Yes, Millie made a compelling argument.”

“Which was?”

“She said you were your mother’s daughter.”

“Which means?”

“I haven’t the foggiest.”

“Can you find out?”

“I can try.”

I nodded and flopped myself back on my bed. “I’m bored already.”

Xavier chuckled. “And what would you like to do?”

“Go outside.”

“You always want what you can’t have, don’t you?”

“Usually. Mom always taught me to shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you’ll land amongst the stars. The way I see it, if I can imagine it, why can’t I get it then?”

“Where is your mother anyway?”

“Somewhere in the Atlantic.”

“On a cruise?”

“No. I sprinkled her ashes in the ocean.” I snapped.

“Oh…I didn’t know.” Xavier mumbled.

Why was I snapping at him? Of course he didn’t know. I hadn’t told him. It wasn’t like I went around telling people about it. I took a deep breath and let it out slowly. “Don’t worry about it.” I grumbled as I turned away from him. It was still a raw wound and it stung when touched. It hadn’t even been six months yet and I still missed her terribly. It wasn’t even just her not being here physically. It was not being able to tell her how my day was, not being able to ask about hers. Not being able to tell her who I was talking to, who I missed. I missed her telling me I worry too much. Or her telling me how somehow it all works out eventually in the end. I really missed her singing…

“You’ve lost so much.” Xavier murmured. His voice brought me out of my thoughts.

“Shit happens.” I dismissed as I pulled my knees up to my chest and wrapped my arms around them. I curled myself into a ball and fought back the emotions that were rising from the empty chasm that was left in my heart.

“Juliet?” Xavier soothed. He reached for me and I flinched when his hand touched my shoulder.

“Can you just go?”

I heard him sigh and felt the bed shift as he stood up. “I’ll be down the hall if you need anything or I can do something.”

I listened for the door and let out a breath I didn’t realize I was holding until it clicked shut. I felt the tears and didn’t bother to fight them this time. I missed her like crazy. I needed her and I didn’t have her any more. I pushed myself up and rummaged through my things until I found my phone. I went through the old pictures I had of us, of her. “Mom…I miss you…it shouldn’t be like this…” I let the tears flow and let it out. I’d never felt more alone. It was one thing to deal with the fact that I didn’t know my father for twenty years. He wasn’t there and it was hole, but I never knew what I was missing. With my mom, she was my everything. My best friend, my sounding board, my cheerleader, my counselor, my mom. She taught me so much about myself and the world. I still needed her desperately. No one else had ever really accepted me completely for who I am. Mom taught me to embrace who I was and never be sorry for it. There was no reason to be. It was hard sometimes, but we are who we are for a reason.

What I wouldn’t give to hear her voice again. I curled up in the bed again and pulled the covers around me. I was cold, but wasn’t the type of cold blankets could cure. I must have fallen asleep because I woke to a soft knocking on the door.

I looked up bleary eyed as Xavier opened the door and carried a tray of food over. My head was pounding and my eyes hurt, when I wiped at them I realized the skin was raw. “I thought you might be hungry.” He offered with a small smile.

“Not really.” I declined.

“At least have some tea or something.” Xavier pressed as he poured two cups of tea.

“You English and your tea, what about coffee?”

Xavier pursed his lips and watched me.

“That was a joke…or it was supposed to be.” I rolled my eyes.

At that he let out a relieved laugh. “Ah, right well, would you like to try to eat something?”

I looked at the tray and shrugged. Tomato soup, a sandwich, water, tea, and a sugar cookie. Even though it looked good, none of it looked appetizing to me. “I’m not really hungry.”

“At least try to eat the cookie. Those always seem to cheer you up. Gwen insisted I grab one before I left the kitchens.”

I gave him a weak smile. “Gwen always has cookies.”

Xavier nodded and smiled back. “That she does. She also promised to come up after her shift. I sincerely hope the two of your aren’t planning on sneaking out.”

“I’m not planning on it right now.” I shook my head. I didn’t add that there was no telling with Gwen.

“Are you feeling any better?”

“Sort of…” I admitted. I was still nursing the effects of rubbing the raw wound, but I was definitely better than an hour ago. I was sure I looked a mess. I hadn’t even really seen myself today. I dragged myself out of bed and stretched. “Let me get a shower, then I’ll eat something.” I called over my shoulder as I retreated to the bathroom.

I looked at myself in the mirror and gasped. Hot mess didn’t touch it. My hair looked more like a rat’s nest than it did my hair. A combination of the hair spray and complicated curls it had tangled and matted together. The make up from last night had smeared and streaked from my cry fest. How had Xavier not told me how awful I was?

I scubbed my face and pulled the remaining pins from my hair and let it fall around my shoulders. Once I’d managed to get my hair down and most of the make up off my face, I felt much more human. I started the water and put it as hot as it would go and stepped in. I let the water scald my skin and it felt good.

I just reflected on everything that had happened in the past few months.

Six months ago I was just trying to graduate and get my degree. I just wanted a life of meager proportions. I was a shift manager and about to get a promotion to the first assistant. After that I’d be in line for my own store. I had an audition for the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra that I was going mad practicing for. I was studying for finals in between taking care of Mom and helping with anything I could.

Now Mom was gone and everything I’d ever known was in a country that I couldn’t return to at the moment. I was here and learning how to be something I wasn’t. I never wanted any of this. I didn’t plan it. I was just curious about a link to my mother. Suddenly, I had a father and the world knew my name and it was slandering it. I missed being a nobody. I missed how my life used to be, even if it was a little lonely.

I was angry. Angry at a lot. Angry at the fact that she was gone. Angry that my father hadn’t been there for me. Angry that all of a sudden I was being criticized for being who I was. Angry that I had to pretend to be something I’m not. Angry that Millie had chosen a douchebag like Ethan for Angelica and that I couldn’t do anything to help. Angry that I didn’t have an outlet here. Angry at the whole situation.

I looked around the bathroom and saw a crystal soap dish. I got out of the shower and picked it up. I threw it against a wall and it shattered. I felt a strange satisfaction, a moment of calmness. I looked around and saw a decorative bowl. I threw that too. I started throwing everything breakable, a porcelain soap dispense, a jar of bath beads, a candle holder, anything I could get my hands on. I was just throwing everything, smashing and breaking everything I could reach.

Xavier burst in. “What is going on in…oh my.” Xavier started his eyes were on me and lingered in shock for a moment before he turned around abruptly. “Ju-Juliet…” He stammered and it was right about then I realized I was still naked.

“GET OUT!” I screamed as I ran for a towel. Running naked on a slippery marble floor while you’re wet and the floor is covered with fragments of glass, and crystal, and porcelain is a terrible idea. I slid and lost my balance. I hissed as the shards sliced into my legs. “Shit!” I cursed as I curled into a ball and saw the crimson rivulets start.

“Here.” Xavier draped a towel over me, his boots crunching on the fragments. I felt the tears coming. “Come here.” Xavier sighed as he picked me up.

“Your clothes-”

“Don’t matter.” Xavier assured me as he carried me effortlessly over the shards.


“How badly are you hurt?”

I sighed and felt myself relax in his arms. Gingerly he placed me on my bed and went to retrieve another towel. He started dabbing at my legs and I winced. Xavier tossed the towel aside and inspected my legs. “You have the shards all over your legs, and in other places too, I imagine. I’ll be right back.”

I looked at my legs. The scrapes were still bleeding lightly and they were a mess. I started inspecting the rest of me and realized my legs had taken the brunt of the damage. I got up and went to grab clothes quickly. I managed to pull on a pair of underwear and bra before Xavier burst in again. I was still fighting with my shirt and he quickly turned away.

I covered myself with the towel again and hissed as it brushed against my leg. “All covered.”

“Let me look.” Xavier had gone to fetch tweezers. He had me sit and he went to work meticulously pulling the shards he could out. “Those seem to be all the ones I can get to.” Xavier sighed as he finished. “How about the rest of you? Are there any others I missed?”

I shook my head. “I, I don’t think so.” Suddenly I realized just how lose he was to me and my breath caught in my throat. Staring into the chocolatey depths of his eyes made something feel tight in my stomach.

“What in the world were you doing?”

I shrugged as I fought to get my thoughts back under control. “I’m not really sure.”

“Why would you start smashing things?”

“I was just…frustrated I think.”

“So you smashed everything?”

“I haven’t had an outlet since I got here.” I defended. “I have no idea what I’m doing here, and it’s been one thing after the other since I arrived. I just needed to vent.”

“That’s your version of venting?”

“Not my usual way, but a way. I have to say, I do feel a little better.”

Xavier sighed and pulled me into a hug. “You are something else. Go get dressed.” Xavier left without another word.

I stared at the closed door more confused than ever. I wasn’t sure what I was feeling anymore, and I wasn’t sure I even cared. I didn’t know if I liked it or not, but I pushed it to the back of my mind. I’d worry about it later. I rummaged through my clothes and found a loose fitting pair of jeans and a concert tee and threw myself on my bed. I wasn’t alone long before Gwen snuck in.

“Hello gorgeous.”

“Oh, Gwen, hi.”

“I hear you’re under house arrest again?”

“Something like that.”

Gwen gave me an impish grin. “Well, that’s perfect.”


“The penguins are playing tonight and Harper really wants to see you.”

“I don’t know…”

“It’ll be fun.” Gwen promised, sing-song.

“What about Xavier?”

“What about him?”

“He’ll know if I sneak out for one.”

“So we’ll be sneakier.”

“You’re not going to let me say no, are you?”

“No. You’re going to come have fun.”

“I’m in so much trouble already, Gwen.”

“So what’s a little more?” Gwen smirked with a careless shrug. “Come on, let’s start planning this.”

Gwen already had it all planned out and I was just supposed to go along with it. Part of me was convinced this was a terrible idea and part of me wanted to get so drunk I couldn’t remember any of this and I didn’t care either. It was a delicate balance and the part of my that couldn’t handle what was going on won out.

“Have you eaten? I made Xavier bring you a cookie with lunch. Did he give it to you? If not, I have more.” Gwen pulled out a pouch of cookies.

“He fed me, cookie and all, I promise.” I laughed.

“Good. So, since you’re confined pretty much to your room, I’ll have Xavier bring up your dinner. You tell him you want to go to bed early. After that, I’ll come get you.”

“And what if Xavier figures it out?”

“He won’t, he’s not that smart.”

“He’s smarter than you think. He’s already asked if we’re sneaking out before you even came in here.”

“That tricky bastard.”

“Gwen, what have you already told him?”

“Nothing important.”

“What did you tell him?”

“That is was his job to make you feel better.”

“Gwen,” I sighed. “Go get Xavier.”

“What are you up to?”

“Just go get him.”

“Don’t spoil my plans.” Gwen warned.

“I promise.”

“Alright.” Gwen grudgingly got up and went to retrieve Xavier.

I was thinking and staring at the ceiling when he came in. “Gwen mentioned you needed me.”


“What’s up?”

“I wanted to give you a little heads up.”

“What’s that?”

“I’m going out tonight.”

“You’re what?” Xavier asked, an eyebrow raised.

“You heard me.”

“And what makes you think I’ll allow this?”

“It’s your fault I got hurt.”

“Oh? Please tell me how that is my fault?”

“If you hadn’t come barging into my bathroom while I was stark naked, I wouldn’t have run for the towel or ended up sliding across the glass encrusted floor.”

“So, despite the fact that you smashed everything in the bathroom, you’re going to say it’s my fault because I ‘barged in’ on you?” Xavier asked making air quotes.

“Yeah, pretty much. You’ve got it. Should I tell Gwen to get you a cookie?”

“That is such backwards logic.”

“But it’s logic.”

I saw a look cross over his face. I couldn’t place it. Was that…no, it couldn’t be. Was Xavier feeling guilty? Now I felt bad.

Xavier pinched the bridge of his nose. “Very well, I will just have to accompany you.”



“That’s what I said.”

“And what makes you think I’d let you go unaccompanied?”

“I’d be accompanied, just not by you.”

“Then who?”


“I knew it.” Xavier growled. “You two need a chaperone.”

“I can handle myself.”

“I disagree.”

“Look Xavier, I didn’t have to tell you. I could have just run off. I’d like you to keep that in mind.”

“Juliet-” Xavier started using that same tone he’d used on the first day I’d met him.

“No, don’t Juliet me. I’m not a child. I just need some time. I’ll be able to vent tonight.”

Xavier crossed his arms and raised an eyebrow. “Like you did earlier?”

“No, in a healthier way. I made a couple friends here and I can blow off some steam with them. I’m going. You can be on my side and help me, or not.”

Xavier sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose. “I cannot believe I’m agreeing to do this. What do you ask of me?”

“Can you cover for me?”

“You do realize I could lose my job over this.”

I hadn’t thought of that. I was just thinking about myself again. I shrugged. “I didn’t, but I also didn’t want to lie to you.” Xavier started massaging his temples. “If I get caught, you can play stupid. Act like you didn’t know?” I suggested.

Xavier gave me a look that clearly said ‘shut up, that’s a stupid idea.’ “I have no intention of lying to your father if you are found out.” Xavier let out a low growl as he took a deep breath. “If you were to do this, there would be a few ground rules we need to cover. I nodded, a smile spreading across my face. I had just sealed a victory. “First and foremost, you are to go out disguised.” I nodded. That was obvious. “Second, there will be a curfew. I want you home no later than two. And thirdly, I want you to take this.” Xavier handed me a phone. “This already has my number programmed into it. It will comfort me to know I have some means to get a hold of you if necessary.”

“Thanks Xavier!” I jumped up and threw my arms around his neck. His arms went around my waist and caught me.

“You owe me.” He chuckled into my hair as he set me down. “You are going to be the death of me, I’m sure.” He sighed. “Stay in your room for now. I will come and get you when it’s safe for you to leave. I’ll assure Millie that you are going to bed early because you feel terrible for what you’ve done.”

I laughed. “That backwards old bat wants to believe I’m a monster so bad. How can she not see me for who I am? Or Ethan for that matter?”

“Your father will want to speak with you tonight. You will have to wait until after that before you go anywhere. Do I make myself clear?” I nodded, my smile wilting. I really wasn’t looking forward to that. I needed to speak with Angelica. I had to make her see or apologize or something. But if I apologize I look guilty when it wasn’t me who did anything wrong. “I know you’re worried, but it will all work out.”

“I just don’t know what I’m going to do , so I’m going to try not to worry about it yet.”

Xavier offered a small smile. “It will work out.”

I nodded and wrapped my arms around myself. Ethan reminded me of someone not so pleasant who could still make my blood run cold. The thought that something like that, someone like that could happen to Angelica made my blood boil and my stomach turn. I shuddered at the unwelcome memories.

“Juliet?” Xavier asked, concern laced his features.

“Huh? What?”

“You zoned out there for a moment. Are you alright?”

“Of course.” I nodded immediately changing my stance. I uncrossed my arms and held them at my sides. I planted my feet shoulder width apart and stood as confidently as I could. “Why wouldn’t I be?”

Xavier eyed me, suspicion in his eyes. “Is there something you aren’t telling me?”

“I’ve told you everything you need to know.”

Gwen chose that moment to sneak back in. “What did you tell him?” she asked, her eyebrow raised.

“He knows what we’re doing tonight.” I replied in a flat tone.

“Why would you tell him?”

“Because it’s his job.” I rolled my eyes. “Besides, he can help up out in ways can’t achieve on our own.”

“Mhmmm.” Gwen hummed, her skepticism plane on her face. She didn’t trust Xavier for reasons I didn’t understand. It seemed the feeling was mutual.

“Gwen, there are some ground rules.” Xavier began.

“Here we go!” Gwen threw her hands in the air. “See what you started?”

“Gwen, just listen to him.”

“Juliet!” Gwen whined. “He’s going to ruin all of our fun!”

“Gwen, stop it. He’s actually helping us.”

“Fine, what ridiculous rules are you forcing poor Juliet to live by?” Gwen pouted.

“The rules are simple.” Xavier growled. “You are to remain inconspicuous. If you are found out, it will mean Juliet is in danger. It also will means you will be at risk, not to mention your job.” He murmured the second under his breath. “Second, Juliet is to answer my calls. If I call, it’s important. End of story. Third, I want you back by two a.m.”

“Two? Are you serious? That’s so early!” Gwen whined.

“I could stop you from going altogether.” Xavier warned.

“I told you not to tell him.” Gwen huffed as she dramatically fell onto my bed, her hand over her eyes. “I warned you. He’ll ruin all our fun!”

“Gwen,” I chuckled. “You’re being ridiculous. He’s helping us out here.”

“If you say so. What else are you imposing on poor Juliet, cruel dictator.”

“That’s about it, though you need to be less of a drama queen.” Xavier gave me a look that showed Gwen was trying his patience. “Gwen, I believe you disguised her properly last time?”


“Make sure no one knows who she is.”

Gwen nodded. “Of course. I’m not stupid you know.”

Xavier sighed. “Very well, I have much to do. Oh, and Gwen, she cannot leave until after I’ve given the all clear.” Xavier warned.

Gwen rolled her eyes. “Whatever you say.”

“If you’ll excuse me.” Xavier sighed as he headed for the door. “Some of us have work to do.”

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