His Ink

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Chapter Twenty-Six

Erika Nadine

Three days since our return from Tricia’s home, and we still didn’t go back to New York since Ryan wasn’t done with his business yet. The past three days were awful because I had to spend all my time alone in the hotel suit watching Netflix. I was almost tempted to cook something, but knowing my cooking skills, I decided it is advisable to sit idle rather than to set the suit on fire.

Ryan however was a different case. He was always on his toes, checking his emails and answering calls. We had barely got time to talk. I still couldn’t understand why Tricia didn’t even give her a goodbye kiss. She was anything but hostile towards me, but she went all mute on her son and that hurt him. He wouldn’t talk about it but I noticed how much it affected him. It slumped him in deep dejection.

Although he restrained himself from breaking down, he drowned himself sooner in his business as if it was his escape from this world.

“No, Liam! It has to be done in an hour by all means.” Mr. Kingston huffed as he ran a hand through his hair and flopped on the couch beside me.

Do you understand that you are dumping me with not only the marketing executive work but also your assistant work? ” heard Liam whine, and I bit my lip, expecting Ryan to snap. I didn’t know why that bothered me, but it did.

“If I were in Manhattan, trust me Liam, I would have done it all by myself, also you know this deal is very important so I just can’t back off now.” He sighed and kicked his shoes off his feet.

Listen lad, I’ll do my best but I’m only a human and I sure as hell don’t want to work myself to early grave so no promises.” Liam’s reply came cool, however the man beside me was from being cool.

“Liam Cromwell!” My fake fiancé growled, and I glanced at him.

I also suggest you the same.” Liam’s laughter filled the room and Ryan rolled his eyes.

“It’s easier said than done.” He scoffed and hung up before his friend could reply.

“How was your day?” I asked him, my eyes still on the screen.

“Good, how was yours?”

“Boring! Watching Netflix and sleeping all the time is boring. When can we go back to New York?” I asked him, internally hoping him to say tonight or tomorrow morning.

“I don’t know, maybe a week more. I have this ball to attend and a deal to take care of.” He answered me blankly, and I cursed when he said another week.

“Why won’t you just let me go?” I offered and turned to watch him shake his head.

“And leave you to be chased paps with their nosy questions?” He cocked his head to the side, and I rolled my eyes at him.

“I hate London. Don’t ask me why because I just have unpleasant experiences.” I admitted and turned back to watch the movie. He scooted closer towards me and I glanced at him suspiciously.

“You mean the Shirako one?” He beamed, laughing, and I rolled my eyes.

“It’s really not fun—”

“It’s for me, anyway to save you from your boredom I thought I’ll take you to London Eye or Madame Tussauds London or London Dungeon or Kew Gardens or National Gallery or Piccadilly Circus And Trafalgar Square or Hyde Park or Buckingham Palace or the British Museum or St Paul’s Cathedral or Tower Of London or Hampton Court Palace. Anywhere you wish.” He suggested.

“I don’t want to go to any of those places.” I declined his offer.

“How about shopping in Knightsbridge or Bond Street or Notting hill or Oxford Street?” He suggested again, and I shook my head. He scratched the back of his head and threw a weary glance at me. “I’m running out of options if you have something on your mind, then speak up.”

“Well, if I tell you, will you take me there?” I arched my eyebrow, and he pulled his lips into a thin line, contemplating my words.

“Well... If that helps with your boredom, yeah, I’ll take you anywhere.” He cleared his throat, but the hesitation in his voice told me he wasn’t trusting me enough.

“Take me to work.” I demanded, and he stared at me with wide eyes like I have grown two heads.

“Work?” He snapped his mouth shut after managing to utter a single word.

“Yes, sir!” I smiled, and he regained his composure.

“And?”

“Let me work for you.” As soon as the words left my mouth, he shook his head.

“Listen, I appreciate your efforts to work for me but if you just want to work for me since there is so much on my plate then don’t do it. I still feel bad about the way I lashed out on you.” He sighed, and I frowned at his words.

“I want to work for you because I really want, I just don’t want to sit idle. Besides, I got a mail last night; Grayson is offering me a job.” I told him the truth and watched his expression change to a serious one.

“You’re not working for him.” He snapped, and I nodded my head.

“If your offer still stands, I’ll work for you or I can’t stay broke.” I smiled at him and got up from the couch. I let out a squeak when strong arms pulled into a lap by my waist.

“Fúck! Woman, you’re going to be the death of me.” My employer mumbled as I stared back at him with wide eyes.

“Make sure you’re not dying sir, you should be alive to sign my paychecks.” I grinned, and he looked at me with an amused expression. He didn’t utter a word as he brushed his lips softly against the soft skin of my neck and I couldn’t help but to moan when he bite on the skin.

“The way you call ’sir’ is just so amazing. It makes me want to do wrong things.” He whispered the words in between the trail of his kisses all the way towards my collarbones, “in a wild way.” I snapped my eyes shut and tangled my fingers in his thick dark hair. I couldn’t help the raising of heat to my cheeks.

“Then what is stopping you?” I whispered the words and ran my hands down his chest.

“Me, myself and I.” He wouldn’t stop planting kisses as he trailed his fingers on my bare skin beneath the sweatshirt.

“Admit that you’re just scared.” I decided to piss him off and he arched an eyebrow.

“Scared of what?” He snapped and pulled his devious lips away from my skin, making me groan in frustration.

“Scared to do the wrong thing.” I pressed my lips against his and he didn’t stop.

“And you’re not scared?” He pulled back, making me frown.

“With you..” I let the words trail for a good few seconds and opened my mouth again. “I’m not scared.” I finished my sentence, and he was quick to seal our lips together in a bruising way.

He gripped my thighs fiercely and pulled me closer to him, earning a squeak from me. He didn’t waste time in wrapping my legs around his waist and getting up from the couch. With me in his grip, he walked towards his bedroom, his lips never leaving mine.

“I’ll only till this once, Miss Nadine this is wrong.” He growled as he tossed me on the bed and stood in front of me, effortlessly looking like a hunk.

“This is not the first time!” I grumbled, and he flashed me his smirk, I watched him climbed on the bed as he undid his dress shirt and tossed it on the ground.

My eyes ran shamelessly all over his torso, admiring his tattoos as he maneuvered over me, pressing his fists into the soft mattress beside either side of my head. I bite my lip and slid my fingertips over the black heart tattoo right above his v line.

“Fuck, Erika!” He cursed and snapped his eyes shut only for a minute and later attacked my lips with his, claiming his dominance over me.

~

~

~

I watched Mr. Kingston from my position on the bed, lying on my chest with my arms crossed below my head and cheeks resting on my arms.

I gazed at the man in front of me. He was beautiful. Perhaps no one could ever describe this man’s beauty. That beneath the rude demeanor he’s a kindhearted guy was undeniable. I really meant that when I said, ‘He would make a girl feel beautiful and blessed to be his.’

No man had ever made me feel the way Ryan Kingston did. There were times when he was an asshole, but he was also the only man who hadn’t exploited me.

My moments of admiration were however stopped when the sound of his phone ringtone filled the room. I watched with a faint smile as he rolled over his side and picked the cell phone from the nightstand with a low groan.

“Hello?” His voice was sharp, that it annoyed him since it disturbed him from his sleep was obvious.

I heard that you’re selling your penthouse, I’m grieving that you haven’t bothered telling me about it.” Ana let out a dramatic sigh at the end in a way only she could.

“I didn’t know I have to ask your permission.” My rude employer snapped at his friend, and I could practically picture Ana rolling her eyes at his reply.

Don’t be rude!” Ana scolded him and now was the time for my employer’s eyes to roll.

“Okay, Mom!” He scoffed and I bit my lip at his reply.

You’re being asshole for no reason.”Ana’s whine was even more dramatic than before.

“You shouldn’t have disturbed me.” His reply came cool.

You sound like I have called you when you’re fucking with someone.” Ana mumbled.

“Unlike you, I do not lift calls when I’m doing the deed.” My employer grinned, and I swatted him at his crudeness, but I couldn’t stop grinning.

RYANNNNNNNNNNN!”

“Yeah?” He raised his eyebrow, gazing at nothing in particular.

I really really really miss Rodger!

“I’m not Rodger.” He replied flatly, making me frown at him. He hung up the call as if he was annoyed with the conversation and tossed his phone on the bed before closing his eyes, I glanced at him as he raked his tattooed hand through his hair.

“What is the deal you wanted to do?” I asked him and his eyes flitted towards me.

“You know the UK brand R&A right? Since the 2018 it was slipping repeatedly into receivership as debt piled up yearly. It filed for bankruptcy on January 22, 2020. On February 28, its last manufacturing plants in the U.S. were closed down. I’m planning to purchase the company from bankruptcy and rename it as Kingston Textiles.” He explained.

“As in the company will be under Kingston Industries?” I said the statement more like a question and he nodded his head as the answer. “How much does it cost?”

R&A was one of the most popular and oldest brands in UK, it’s such a shame that it’s bankrupted.

He glanced at me with a passive expression before gazing at the celling for few seconds and opened his mouth to speak. “1 Billion dollars.”

My jaw was hanging.

“That’s twice the net worth of Kingston Textiles, where are you going to get this 1Billion from?” I arched my eyebrow at him.

“I’ll just have to sell a few of my properties.” He shrugged as if it was nothing.

“Why wouldn’t you add industry partners and get loan? Oh wait, by properties you meant the one under Kingston Industries right then I think that’s fine.” I said, and he gave me an unbelievable look.

“You have a wrong perception about Malik Industries.” He sighed, “why do you think Kingston Textiles was about to be bankrupted before I took over?”

I didn’t have an answer for his question.

“Kingston Industries net worth is 110 Billion dollars as of today, 8 years back when my dad was still the CEO of Kingston Industries, our shares were 70%, Andrew’s were 15%, 5% were Perrins’ and his minions’ and the rest 10% were the public’s.” He explained, and I nodded my head.

“But today our shares are 40%, Andrew’s remained 15%, 30% shares are Perrins’ and his minions, the rest 15% is public’s.” I couldn’t help but to frown at his words.

“Wait, why did you father let this happen?”

“He wouldn’t have let this happen if he was alive.” Ryan snapped his eyes shut and his expression felt like a kick in my stomach.

“I’m sorry! I—”

“That’s fine! Perrins and his minions would come to mom every year and ask her to sell the shares since the company was running at loss, mum would sign and sell our shares because she had to, there was no other man to look after the business, there were too many happenings internally but we didn’t know what was going on.” He mumbled and I bite the inside of my cheek.

“Imaging loosing 30% of shares in just 4 years. The fifth year was however different, we didn’t sell the share, I objected it and surprisingly my mum didn’t despise that idea, I demanded Perrins to leave the CEO post because with him as the CEO the company was constantly running in a loss, Andrew supported me as well and Perrins left the chair, but a year later when I was proposed as the new CEO. Perrins was the first one to object. His minions said, my tattoos will make everything seem like a joke.” I watched as a muscle in his jaw twitched.

“After a lot of bickering, they agreed to let me take over Kingston Textiles was about to collapse completely, since it was at the verge of bankruptcy I needed money for turnover, but they weren’t even willing to give horseshit. Kingston Industries a single month profits could have saved Kingston Textiles from drowning but no the assholes wouldn’t let me get a single dollar as a fund or even as loan, I had 40% shares under my name but Perrins’ and his minions’ had 30% so they would always object.”

“That’s unfair.” I muttered in annoyance.

“It wasn’t just that they pushed me into a whole new work field, but it was also that they wouldn’t give loans, I had to sell my private properties to clear the debts and invest the money in business. It’s just pointless to ask them to give loan so I can buy R&A and rename it as Kingston Textiles. So I’ve to sell my NYC penthouse and few more assets.” He stared at the celling.

“So will you shift Kingston Textiles to London after this deal?” I asked him, ignoring the uneasy feeling in my stomach.

“No, R&A companies and shops will be made as branches for Kingston Textiles. However, the New York one will be the headquarters. Liam and Ana will move to London after this deal. They love here in London.” I frowned at his words.

So I was the only one who had terrible experiences in London.

“If it fails, it wouldn’t affect Kingston Textiles’ income, right?” I asked him and he nodded his head. “But it would affect you, since you’re the investor. Oh my god! That’s risky. Have you gone crazy? It’s 1 Billion dollars.” I scoffed, but he was smirking.

“I know I’m taking up risk, but this is the only way.” He sighed and picked up his phone when he heard the sound of a notification.

“This is a colossal risk. What if it fails?” I growled.

He scrolled through his phone, ignoring me. I rested my cheek on my crossed arms and tried my best to glare at him.

This wasn’t the appropriate to appreciate him, but Ryan Kingston really didn’t have bad angles, like really.

After a few seconds, he scooted closer to me and ran his hand in my hair, brushing aside the strands which were falling on my face.

“I don’t know what if it fails, and I don’t want to think of failure. My dad always used to say this, no matter what, your hard-work never betrays you! The day when I took over Kingston Textiles that was my only motivation and I worked hard, it never failed me. I’m confident I won’t fail again because—” his words were cut off by mine.

“We will work hard.” I smiled at him. If I hadn’t already been swooning over his ridiculously alluring features, I would have now. The look on his face was priceless.

He mirrored my smile before grabbing my chin fiercely and locking our lips together. I smiled into the kiss when I felt the tingling sensation, and his fingers cupped my cheeks.

When he pulled back, I gazed into his chocolates eyes as warmth spread within me.

He has the most beautiful eyes!

═∘♡༉∘ ═

LMAO! I know this is not the best chapter, but the next one will have tea.

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