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Arc 1.6

Of course, drinking outside was not an option. He disliked socializing at the best of times, let alone when drunk and likely to be unwillingly accompanied by even more drunks at some bar. So here he was, raiding the cabinets of his kitchen for wine, all the while mentally cursing his patron/stalker.

He was well into his second bottle when drinking started to become boring. So he went to his secret stash of chocolate — a secret stash of chocolate was a must, that was just common sense — and grabbed all sorts of expensive chocolaty things. It occurred to him, at that moment, that his secret stash was not so secret anymore due to the cameras.

“Stupid pervert,” he ground out, deciding then and there to move his stash somewhere safer at the next opportunity, which was as soon as he became sober.

He took the chocolate and the wine, placed them on the table next to the very soft sofa, before picking up some blankets and making sure he became a drunk human burrito with a sweet tooth.

Scrolling through the channels, he hoped to find something interesting to hold his attention, but he ended up listening to the news. Ah, it seemed the mayoral elections were coming up. Why was he listening to this again?

“..., while favoured candidate Stephen Pruitt is the chairman of the Pruitt Foundation. He has stated that if he were to win, he would leave the Foundation in the hands of his niece, Brigitte Pruitt, who is known for her charitable contributions,” the anchorwoman spoke.

Well, that answered that question. Brigitte Pruitt continued to be a surprise, though. At first, when he had checked the people with the money and the means to be his patron, he had thought her brother, parents, or uncle to be more viable candidates. However, her uncle, although gay, appeared to be happily married; her parents were both unhappily married but each had a string of lovers that they made little effort to hide from each-other; while the brother was painfully straight. Tristan had even thought that maybe James Pruitt’s ever-growing list of unsuccessful relationships was a cover for his more perverse undertakings but his personality appeared to be too impatient and petty to be as successful and anonymous as his patron was.

So, Brigitte Pruitt, had not been a candidate until he met her for the second time in the Gallery. He had been expecting for his stalker to make a move for a month and was losing hope, when she appeared. Smart, patient and rich. More importantly, interested in him —or “his work,” as she would say. She then became a prime candidate. But nothing seemed to suggest her actual involvement. His research had not shown anything more beyond what everyone else knew. Former heiress of the Pruitt fortune, left her family home after a conflict with her parents. Her brother hated her for being passed up as an heir, even though he was older. Her parents had seemed to have favoured her even though she was a woman in their otherwise traditional household. Quite enlightened of them. Everyone only had good words for Brigitte: genius, beautiful, self-made and of perfect lineage. Really, one couldn’t ask for anything more. Tristan had despaired for a while before finding out about her biweekly meetings with a psychologist. A “complete disinterest in other people” and “underdeveloped empathy” seemed like just the things to describe someone psychotic enough to deviate into stalking if she were to suddenly find an obsession.

But with the way the meeting earlier that day had gone, she appeared to be even more patient than him. Perhaps he should just literally thank her and make a run for it. Waiting for a confession of her being his patron seemed to be plain impossible.

“Ugh, stupid woman,” she had brightened like a puppy when he had accepted her invitation. “More like a stupid puppy.” Yes, that was right, he thought, as he drank. She was not a woman but a puppy— no, no, a wolf pretending to be a puppy, or was it a sheep? He couldn’t quite remember the expression. Whatever. He needed more chocolate.

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