Declining Destiny

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Whore for Hire

“Don’t even think about it,” Morgan hisses at me as I try to sit down on the other side of the table, away from Brian. I take a breath in, silently exasperated and trail my hand along the edge of the polished oak on my way to my intended seat.

The ambiance of the room is a sophistication that perfectly imitates that of the pearl white spreading from the delicate swirls on the ceiling to the pristine marble beneath our feet. The exaggerated size of the walls makes those of us inside them look so insignificantly small. No matter how big they may feel in the business world. Their teeth can glisten with the same lustre as the immaculate room, but their smiles seem no less fraudulent.

Eyeing Brian, I hesitantly bend into my seat. We both ignore the business chatter going on over our heads. He’s far more focused on me and I couldn’t care less about their careers. I have even less interest in anything Brian has to say but he doesn’t seem fazed by that. He ignores the “don’t talk to me” look on my face and lifts his elbow up onto the table to lean into me.

The persistent little wretch smugly moves his eyes down to my dress, “I told you to look pretty Plum, didn’t expect you to go all princess for me.”

His shining teeth not more than a few inches from my face, create a picture in front of me. A picture of the grin that from a distance I once thought looked charming, and that now only brings a sickness to my stomach.

I jerk my head to meet his eyes and respond through the fakest passive aggressive smile I have, “I didn’t exactly get to choose but if I had known you were the one I was looking “presentable” for, I would have worn a potato sack.”

While my smile becomes more genuine, his fades slightly. He sits back in his chair, draping his arm over the back of it casually and a touché chuckle escapes through his teeth.

My foster parents pull Brian into their discussion and my head falls to my plate away from it all. Maybe they mentioned my name, their words blur with the scrapping of my fork against the ivy porcelain. The maze of spaghetti cages me, tugging me away from the conversation and the waves of the ocean fill the air around me.

“Elena?” I hear the waves crash violently against the shore as reality becomes less distant. “Elena, is that true?”
The ultramarine blue surrounding my plate jumps back into my periphery and I shoot my head up, dropping my fork to my plate with a clatter. My head snaps to the side as the question Brian just asked reappears in my head.

“Is what true?” I question blankly.

“I do apologise,” Morgan interrupts Brian’s ready to answer expression. “She can be a bit rude sometimes.” “And yes it’s true, quite a scene her mother made. A bullet to the brain. There’s no denying what happened there.” Morgan rants casually, without a symptom of sympathy.

My gaze falls back to my plate and my heart tears through my stomach. The topic of my dead mother reveals my initial drifting from the conversation. My subconscious couldn’t bear the thought of the gaping hole in my chest, left by my heart being ripped from me. And now it was lying on the table; blood leaking from its wounds for 2 strangers and three enemies to gawk at.

Brian’s hand creeps under the table and wraps around mine in an effort to comfort me, but he was the last person I wanted to be touching me right now. I shoo him off of me and twizzle the spaghetti around my fork, trying to push back the dredged-up memories of the one person I loved most in the world.

“Why don’t we pull this conversation towards something lighter,” Brian’s father suggests with an arrogant howling chuckle. His demeanour tells me one of two things: he’s never lost anyone close to him, or he has such little care for those close to him that losing one would mean nothing. I’d bet on the latter.

“Perhaps the budding romance between our two little troublemakers there.” He points his fork over at me and Brian before putting it back to his mouth to slurp off the spaghetti.

Morgan shoots me a threatening glare that instantly shuts my fallen jaw. “Maybe we could make this dinner a regular thing once they’re official, “she suggests, her glass in the air and condescension lining her smile.

“Indeed, with our families getting closer I’m certain that partnership is in your future,” Brian’s father continues about their upcoming business relationship as the sad truth begins to dawn on me.

My head travels to the smug smirk taking over Brian’s face, and as his eyes wrinkle with a cocky amusement, I realise that I’ve lost.
He knew this whole time that he’d won and he was finally letting his face brag. He knew coming here that I was nothing but a pawn to them, a chess piece they were all too happy to whore out like a common prostitute to further Morgan’s career. And he knew I wouldn’t be able to do anything about it.

He leans into me slowly, putting one hand on mine and wiping the other through my silky hair to move it out of the way. Leaning in further so that I can feel the heat of his breathe by my ear, he whispers “Brian always gets what he wants.”

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