Sweet Temptation

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Messy

Chapter 2. Messy

Chloe stood on the sideways, frozen. Her empty looked was gazing at what’s left in front of her. It was her cakeshop that’s no longer has its rooftops. The cute-simple-elegant Sweets Cakeshop that designed with white and purple-pastel color dominant paint, was now mostly covered in the grey-black burnt on what’s-left-of-a-wall.

All her equipment had broken-burnt, especially the crucial ones; ovens, freezers, and mixers. Not only that, the Sweet Cakeshop’s van was ‘parked’ in the middle of the space—also burnt. They were lucky the fire didn’t spread to the other buildings and there were no other people who got hurt by the accident.

Chloe crossed her arms on her chest, hugging herself with tears on her cheeks. Her dreams had gone, just like that. She stared up to the night sky, closing her eyes, and tried to soothe herself in her mind.

Don’t worry, this is what insurance for, right?

Wait, are the insurance contracts already activated to cover this all up? They must be active, or she will never be back on her feet.

I have to call all the clients whose projects rely on the cakeshop. I have to cancel all the big projects.

She ran her fingers on her hair, feeling frustrated before wiping all the tears on her cheeks. It’s late-night and she couldn’t do anything there anyway. She looked down at her feet before slowly walked home.

***

“So, how it’d goes with the insurance company?” Amy said from the other end of the phone. Amy had been checking on Chloe since early in the morning, it’s the third checking-call from her in the afternoon. Amy was her best friend for years. She often helped Chloe in many projects or even in any other aspect of Chloe’s life, Chloe considered her as her own sister.

“Uhm... No luck..” Chloe sighed while putting her coffee mug inside the microwave. She quietly sniffled. “According to their policy, every contract will be active—automatically, after a month from signing the paper... Since I just joined them and signed the paper last week, they can’t cover my shop.”

“Have you tried to speak with someone more—”

“Yes, I did.” Chloe cut in, desperate with the fact that talking with the superior from the insurance company didn’t help. “But still.. they said it is what it is..” Chloe touched her forehead. “Anyway, I had canceled all of the big projects that we can’t handle anymore, you know since we can’t use the shop’s equipment... But, the project with Jeremy is still up..”

“Of course it is..” Amy said. Chloe could sense Amy’s smile from the way she spoke.

“It’s not like that, his project is our closest schedule and I still can handle it with the regular oven in my apartment—”

“You don’t need to explain... Besides, I didn’t say anything..” Amy smiled again.

“When will you’re gonna stop teasing me with him? He’s just a customer.” Chloe weakly scoffed.

“When you start accepting his offer to date him.” She slightly laughed. Chloe was about to reply when she heard another incoming call tone.

“Amy, I have to take another call... It’s Mel..”

“Okay.. See you on project Jeremy! Take care!” Amy partly shouted.

“Thanks, you too!”

After hanging up with Amy, Chloe quickly picked up the call from Melanie. “Hey, sis.. When will you get here? I need to talk.” Said Melanie.

“Um, I’ve got a lot of things to do, I don’t think I can go there today.. Sorry.” Chloe quietly sighed. “How are you, today?”

“Better, thanks.. So, Scott is awake and he said his brother is coming.” Melanie said, Chloe could hear her chewing from the phone.

“And you’re telling me this, because..?”

“I need you to meet him.. Scott’s brother will take care of everything about our cakeshop..” Something in Melanie’s voice was telling Chloe that she was more than better, Melanie sounded happy. Too happy for someone that should’ve been feeling guilty about what they did. Not that Chloe blamed her for being happy, but that was just typical Melanie.

Irresponsible, sometimes ignorant. –Chloe thought inside. She kept quiet for a while.

“Hello? Chloe..?”

“Y-yes, I’m here.” Chloe shook her head.

“Scott said that you have to meet his brother in his office.. Tomorrow morning, at Kingston Tower. Scott had spoken to him, so he knew that you’re gonna be there.. You do know about Kingston Corporation, right?” Her questioning tone was very obvious for Chloe.

“Actually, I don’t.” Never heard of it. Who’s following all the rich guys from a different world, slash, every owner of the big companies in the country, anyway? I’m too busy dealing with my own world.

“Besides, aside from the fact that our shop does need to be restored.. Shouldn’t you and Scott, be the ones that need to meet him first? Why doesn’t he come to the hospital first?” For a second Chloe was not pleased by the fact that she had to take responsibility that not hers. She knew her sister too well.

“Scott had told him everything.. He’ll be arriving in the town early morning... I don’t know why he decided not to meet us first- - at the hospital instead of his office.. Scott said his brother wants to take care of our shop first. I guess that’s the first reason he goes here in the first place, to help Scott. Please, you know all about this and the shop better than me..” Melanie sighed before saying, “Chloe.. This is my way to make things right..”

“Okay!” Chloe slightly raised her voice when she cut in and took a deep breath when she realized it. Some other time, one day, she really got to speak to Melanie about what’s burdened her. “Just send me the details..”

“Yes! I’ll text you the details.. Thanks, sis!” Melanie lightly squealed.

***

Liam Kingston threw the magazine to the seat near him inside his private jet while looking outside the window. He still couldn’t believe what his brother, Scott did. –Got his girlfriend pregnant. How could he be that stupid? –Liam thought inside.

As the firstborn of Kingston Family and Kingston Corporation, Liam always was the man who protects both the family and the company. He protected the Kingston family legacy, what his father had built from ground zero, exactly from the people who had been craving and waiting to find their way to exploit his family’s wealthiness. And when he said the people, he was particularly referring to the gold-digging people—that in Scott's case, the gold digger girlfriend.

In all his life, he knew too well not to cross the line when you had to ‘have fun’ with the girls. Especially the gold digger type of girls. Don’t get him wrong, he loved girls. But to trust them was another story. He’s not having self-pity-party at the moment, sure he had some bad experiences with both good girls and bad girls, but there were no old wounds that would make him have a self-pity-party.

There are no wounds at all. Only lessons.

And from the look of it, Scott hadn’t learned anything.

Liam took a deep breath, feeling overwhelmed for a second. He tired of the fact that he always had to clean up his brother’s mess. Maybe if Scott his only brother, he wouldn’t be so overwhelmed, but he had two more brothers who were younger than Scott, Jackson Kingston, and Marley Kingston.

Liam had been taking the role of his father, along with the obligation to keep his family steady and he always was the son that his mom counted on.

In fact, the reason he’s on the jet to Alvero City and help Scott was for their mother’s sake too. There’s nothing that Liam wouldn’t do for his mom, Elouise Kingston. Liam knew how his mother had been struggled alone, ever since his father had died a decade ago.

It’s been a rough life for the company and the family, but he’s not a fan of any nostalgic thoughts or self-pity. Liam just couldn’t believe when everything got better in the past year, one of his brothers just have to make a new problem. Again.

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