"Sir." I looked up from the where I sat on the couch engrossed in dozens of files in front of me at Carl's voice. Carl is my personal secretary. He is fairly middle aged with sharp looks and smart brains who handles everything around me and keeps me from snapping on my patience which is as strong as a blade of grass. He is pretty much my basic need. I have no idea what would I do with out him on my side. With him keeping a tab on everything for me around the company is always a good amount of an extra hand for me. I dearly respect his work.
"Yes, Carl?" I asked getting up to fetch myself some beer from the kitchen.
"Mr. James is here." He informed and I nodded beckoning him to send him in. "And I'll be taking off."
"Good night, Carl."
"Good night, Sir." He greeted back and went away. On the cue Valentino came in.
"Don't kid me Hyland!" He exclaimed before I could ask him what was he doing here. I gave him a confused look.
"What do you mean?"
"I get it you wanted to break, away from all the drama but this? This is too much." He said flopping down and making himself comfortable already. "Valerie called today and apparently his son does not appreciate anyone seeing him without making a prior appointment with his so called personal secretary. Nice moves jerk."
"Mom likes to be dramatic." I shrugged and waved it off making it perfectly clear that it was not a big deal for me.
"Really? What about me? Why was I made to wait while Carl came in to inform you first?" Val said giving me a look to try and challenge him on this one. I sighed.
"I moved down to here for a reason. I do not want anyone to come and bug me here to go back. Enough for you?" I said through gritted teeth, my temper simmering already under my skin.
"Shutting everyone out is not an answer." He said under his breath but I caught it anyways and chose effectively to ignore it as well.
Every one has been on my case lately. My mother worries about me when I have made it clear at least a hundred times not to. I am not depressed and certainly do not need any psychiatric help that may help me ease off my thoughts. Its not her that runs alone on my back but the whole family turns sensitive when and where I am concerned which actually got me to leave my home in the first place and find a small space for myself where no one would come and annoy me by making me feel like I am a fragile piece of glass work, ready to break on the first touch that comes my way.
"What are you doing here anyways?" I asked taking a turn from the conversation which was bound to come up.
"Visiting Mae." He informed cooly and I gave him a smirk.
"You two hitting it off huh?"
Valentino shrugged smiling.
"She is nice." He said.
"Valentino James describing a girl nice and not hot. Shoot me." I joked but happy at the same time. Its not really his nature to date and be serious about it. Considering the other day when he would not shut up about Mae, I like to think she would subside his one night stands.
"I fully intend to when I buy a gun." He said giving me a blank look. "Anyways call home for once. Whenever you feel like it okay mate?"
I nodded as he got up to go. I made my way to my room. This place is like a rabbit hole compared to the mansion I used to live in only a couple of weeks back then I left when I could not bear to have anyone treating me like a baby anymore.
They think that they know what bothers me but they are wrong. They never understood why I acted out the most when he died.
Two years ago I was in Boston, away for my music studies at my dream college. Berklee College of Music. I was the happiest person in the world when I finally had my acceptance letter in my hand. That life looks like a century away now. All gone and buried in past. I was in my class when I got the news of my father, realising how oblivious I had been towards my family. He was gone and I could not even make it to his funeral on time. I hate myself for that. Since then everyone has been walking on floor full of needles around me, careful, in fact too careful to not set me off and they do not understand it is exactly that which has driven me away from all of them in the first place.
I changed into my night clothes. Since it was only midnight, I was not really sleepy. My sleeping schedule is fucked up, completely awful. I hardly get any sleep that could compensate the amount of hours and energy I spend on my work.
I put on my glasses and picked up the book from my night stand which I had left lying last night and continued my reading.
I looked up from my book and my eyes locked with hers instantly. It took all the efforts in my facial muscles to not give away the stupid smile that always threatens to show whenever I see her small pretty face. Instead I smirked at her to acknowledge her presence.
"I hope sexy was silent in your new name for me." I said getting up and walking up to the window that separates our privacy. Well not really.
"Pfftss come down from your high pedestal Mr. I need to be cocky even at midnight." She said making a face and scoffing at me in the most un-womanly way I have ever seen.
I like her. I like her the way she tries to be nonchalant around me even when I catch her looking at me through the window at times and smirk at her failed attempts to look away quickly and pretend like nothing happened. She is really cute when she tries to hide her blush. I like her being careless around me, like now when she stands across from me and laughs without any hesitation whatsoever. It puts me in a much comfortable stand knowing she does not see me for some mess that can not be controlled. I look at her and all I see is amusement, not yearning for my fixation.
"Then what can I do for you Ma'am?" I asked making sure to give my sarcastic voice a little too much stress.
"Tomorrow is weekend." She said giving me a flat look.
"So put on some clothes." She said folding her hands across her chest. Which made me look down on mine and I noticed my lack of clothing.
"Why, is this bothering you?" I asked smirking at her. I almost expected her to blush and squirm to satisfy my own appreciation but surprisingly she did not.
She shook her head chuckling.
"No but you will be cold if you do not. We are going to get some ice creams." She said grinning. If not for me standing in front of her she would have definitely jumped up and down while clapping her hands with the excitement which is quite evident in her face. I can almost picture her doing that.
"Yes Charles now. Unless you would much rather go back to reading Harry Potter?" She said walking backwards to the door of her room with a smirk on her face making me almost stumble and fall through my window.
She exited her room laughing and I Shook my head when I caught the picture of Daniel Radcliffe on the book cover.
She caught me with you buddy.
Real smooth Charles.
I changed back to my casual clothes and made my way out of the apartment. I contemplated taking the keys of my car but then decided against it. She would freak out anyways if she saw my Maserati. Instead I took another set of keys. Time to have some fun.
When I exited the building, I found Stella already perched on staircase that led upto the entrance of this block of apartments. She was engrossed in her phone and I took this opportunity to check her out.
What? I am man. Get over it.
Besides she was a hard case to go unnoticed. She was wearing an oversized hoodie which almost hid her denim shorts, innocently exposing her long toned legs. Her long hair was left open down her back and for a moment I just stopped myself from approaching her instantly.
I do not know what is it with her. Usually a girl with that amount of chirpiness would have gotten me annoyed in no time but here I am, standing behind her all confused as to why did I agree to go get ice cream with her?
I saw her thumb tapping on the camera icon on her phone and before I could comprehend her intentions, she clicked a photo of me standing behind her, caught in middle of my check out sessions. She laughed and turned to me holding the picture up for me to see.
I was totally looking dumb with a blank face while she had her tongue stuck out at me as if trying to tell me, 'gotcha!'.
I shook my head.
"I know right!"
"Slow down hyena." I said chuckling when I heard her loud excited voice. It almost echoed around the neighbourhood which was mostly empty.
"Oops." She said slapping a hand over her mouth stifling her laughter.
"Are you drunk?" I asked nearing her. She was almost acting comical at this point.
"Why you twat, I can be fun without alcohol in my system." She said trying to look hurt but it was hard for her with the smile that was gracing her lips so intently.
"C'mon." I grabbed her hand and pulled her into the direction of building's parking space.
"But the google map says ice cream's this way." She gestured with her free hand in the opposite direction while I dragged her with me.
We made it to the spot where I had my fun part tucked away safely.
"Charles?" She gave me a questioning look.
"Hmm?" I looked at Stella and then uncovered my motor bike. She gasped and I smirked.
I hand her an extra helmet. She took it and we stood back gazing at my Harley Davidson street 750 in total admiration. Its my babe after all.
"Are you kidding me?! This is so cool!" She started to jump in her steps just like I had imagined her earlier making me laugh at her quirkiness.
"Do you like it?"
"I love it!" She went near my bike and ran her fingers on the seat cover like she was caressing it.
I put on a helmet and slide over the seat, initiating the motor. The engine came to life, roaring, making a satisfactory noise in wake.
"Get on." I gesture for Stella who was looking at me with wide eyes, waiting for me to sweep her away on it to some ice cream store.
"But promise me you will drive slow?" She asked me with a sincere look and I nodded.
I did not want to ruin anything anyways. I am actually having fun after a long time.
"I promise, princess."
She fastened the helmet belt and swung her leg to get on behind me, her hands going around my waist to hold herself in place.
Her warmness had a whole together different vibe and I liked it more than what was good for me.