Working To Live

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Robert Peyton made his billions from tech, oil, real estate, and pharmaceuticals. He isn't the typical arrogant, showboating billionaire and prefers to keep his circle tight and remain out of the spotlight. Robert's family and friends decide to throw a surprise luxury yacht party for his 35th birthday. Robert was bored out of his mind during the event and prayed something would happen that would force him to call it a night. He barely finished his train of thought when a waitress clumsily spilled a glass of champagne in his lap. She was immediately fired on the spot and ran below deck in tears. The softie in Robert had him seeking out the young woman.. One thing led to another and Robert found himself inviting the melancholy woman for an impromptu trip to Lake Charles for a night of gambling and debauchery. Sasha Greene left Austin, Texas broke as a joke for a night of wild fun with a billionaire and returned two days later Mrs. Sasha Peyton. The pair mutually decides to keep their marriage a secret while they adjust to their new lives in the spotlight. The couple will have to overcome overwhelming media attention, threats to Sasha's life, Robert's family who want them separated, and a lovesick bodyguard who wants Sasha for himself.

Romance / Drama
Age Rating:

Employment Woes

“Are you sure you’re not hiring right now? I can work graveyard shifts. That’s not a problem,” Sasha frantically rushed out before receiving the harsh click, followed by the dreaded dial tone.

“Eff my life,” Sasha sighed, flopping back onto her less than comfortable mattress. Sasha closed her eyes and mentally calculated the hours and pay she needed in order to pay her “living” expenses. The alarm sounded on Sasha’s phone, alerting her she needed to check her sugars. She ended the alarm and grabbed her monitor off of her nightstand.

“158. Not the worst, not the best,” she muttered to herself, climbing off the bed. Sasha marched to her nearly-empty fridge in her studio apartment, which was only a hop, skip, and a jump from her bed, and retrieved the last of her insulin. Sasha’s sugars were high because she had only been giving herself half the recommended dosage every other day in a desperate attempt to prolong the medication until she could afford to buy more or plead with a doctor to give her a sample to last her another week.

Sasha works three jobs; correction, worked three jobs until she recently lost her temp job working as a cashier at a retail store during the holiday season. Sasha should’ve been prepared to be let go; however, she thought her winning personality, excellent customer service, and punctuality would’ve earned her a permanent spot on the team. Sasha loathed the fact that she was let go over the tenured employees who sat around and did the bare minimum while she worked her butt off. Still, Sasha had no one to blame but herself and should’ve had another job lined up.

Sasha was no stranger to poverty. She grew up her entire life with parents who robbed Peter to pay Paul. There were no family vacations to Disneyland, brand new clothing, piles of Christmas presents under the tree; all Sasha had to look forward to were promises that things were “going to get better.” But, better never came.

By the age of 16, Sasha had to fend for herself. The pressure and stress of working long hours with little to no sleep and poor nutrition killed her father. Sasha’s mother couldn’t survive the grief of losing her husband. She selfishly took her own life, leaving Sasha behind to support herself. Sasha was handed over to the foster care system and remained there until she aged out a year and a half later. Sasha didn’t hate foster care. In fact, she was living better in foster care than she did with her parents. Sasha received three square meals a day, wore nicer clothing and shoes, and while she shared a bedroom with another girl around her age, her bedroom was spacious enough to comfortably house the both of them without them feeling they were squished on top of each other. She didn’t have her own bedroom living with her parents. In fact, Sasha slept on the futon in the living room.

At the age of 18, Sasha received the good ol’ heave-ho and was released unto the unforgiving world. Sasha saved just enough from part-time babysitting jobs over the past year to pay the security deposit and first month rent on her studio apartment, along with small pieces of furniture she picked up from the local thrift store. Because of the economy and the rising housing market, Sasha’s tiny 400 square foot apartment still cost her $800 a month, and that was NOT including bills. Realistically, Sasha knew she should probably relocate, but rent was expensive anywhere you went, and she just couldn’t see herself leaving Austin, Texas. Austin was the only home she knew.

Sasha was doing okay for herself. Her bills were paid. She managed to buy a little car that got her from point A to point B, and she was taking online courses at the local community college. Everything was going well until she fell ill from a mysterious illness. Sasha passed off her symptoms as simply fatigue due to work and school but was brought to the swift realization her condition was far worse. Sasha was diagnosed with Type I Diabetes on her 19th birthday. At the time, Sasha’s insulin was covered by Medicaid.

A year ago, everything changed when Sasha’s insulin was discontinued, and she was prescribed a new brand. This brand wasn’t covered by Medicaid and cost more than her rent. So here she was, scrimping and saving to live another day. Sasha needed to find another job, and quickly. Her life literally depended upon it.

Sasha administered her dose and snorted at the little bit of insulin left at the bottom of the vial. Despite how hard life was growing up, and even now, Sasha enjoyed living, and she didn’t want her time cut short simply because she was poor and couldn’t afford her medication. At her lowest, Sasha almost considered sleeping with a doctor for free samples of the drug. He was handsome enough, and Sasha didn’t have to worry about him blabbing his mouth because he would lose his medical license if anyone found out. He proposed the forbidden arrangement and gave Sasha a week to consider. It only took two days for Sasha to give him her answer. She refused to spread her legs for a basic human right to have access to affordable healthcare, and she also couldn’t give a man that kind of power over her. It might’ve started out as casual sex, but no telling what else he could demand from her once she took a trip down that rabbit hole.

A knock on Sasha’s door pulled her away from her self-pity.

“Hey, Mama-san. What are you doing here?” Sasha asked the elderly Japanese woman.

“Business was slow tonight, and I brought you some leftovers. I made you some stir fry and dumplings.”

Sasha was almost in tears. “Thank you so much. You didn’t have to do this,” Sasha expressed, accepting the hefty brown paper bag.

“Of course I did. It would’ve been tossed in the trash, and I figured you missed my cooking,” the woman chuckled.

“You have no idea. I’ve been dreaming of your cooking, Mama-san. Is everything going well at the restaurant?”

“As well as to be expected. We miss you. You know you always have a place there.”

“Does Parker still work there?”

“He’s my grandson. Even when he’s not working, he’s there. You two need to behave like adults and get over things.”

“I know, Mama-san, and believe me, I tried, but Parker makes the work environment uncomfortable. He always has an attitude and is hostile toward me, and I have a lot on my plate, and I don’t want to deal with that.”

The elderly woman let out a heavy sigh, upset that her grandson made Sasha feel this way. She considered Sasha family and hoped Parker and Sasha made it official again.

“I understand. Don’t be a stranger. The more you come by, the more you get fed.”

“Thanks, Mama-san. I’ll come have tea with you soon.”

“Don’t keep an old woman waiting.”

Sasha nodded in agreement and gently shut the door. She ran to her coffee table and pulled out the overladen containers, and ripped apart her chopsticks.

“Mmmmm,” Sasha groaned after shoveling an entire dumpling in her mouth. Sasha surveyed the food spread out on the table and mentally portioned it. If she took it easy, she’d have enough food for the next four days.

Sasha used to be a waitress at the Tea Garden Japanese restaurant, where she met her ex, Parker Yamada. Like a fool, she mixed business with pleasure and got burned. The two of them dated for nine months when she finally broke off their relationship. Parker had a jealousy issue and constantly accused Sasha of flirting with male customers and went as far as accusing her of sleeping with them. Sasha admits her smile was extra big at times, and she would playfully laugh at their jokes, but it was only for the money.

Sasha was spending the night at Parker’s apartment after a night of bar-hopping after work. Things went south when Parker started degrading her by calling her a slut, whore, and every other name in the book. Sasha decided she had enough of the verbal abuse and attempted to leave. Parker claimed he wasn’t done “talking” to her and blocked her exit. The aggression and hostility in his tone scared Sasha, causing her to cry. She imagined Parker would do the unthinkable and lay hands on her.

Sasha agreed to stay, and the verbal abuse continued well into the night until he passed out. She immediately left and formulated a plan on how she would break up with him the next day. He called several times throughout the day, but Sasha wasn’t ready to speak to him. Sasha left her apartment to go to the store when she ran into Parker, who behaved as if nothing happened last night. He attempted to hug and kiss her but instead received a look of disgust from Sasha and a shove. Sasha was appalled that Parker behaved as if nothing happened the night before. Parker claimed he “blacked out,” but Sasha knew better than that. Parker had a few drinks, and she’ll be the first to admit he was beyond tipsy, but he wasn’t blacked out drunk by a long shot. Sasha ended things with Parker right there in her hallway. He didn’t take too kindly to the split and claimed she made things up and overreacted. Ever since then, Sasha and Parker were unable to be within 10 feet of each other. She tried to be an adult and ignore Parker’s underhanded remarks at her while they worked, but it became too much. Sasha left the best money-making job she had for her peace of mind.

Sasha was halfway through her teriyaki chicken when her phone rang.

“Hello?” Sasha mumbled with a mouth full of chicken.

“Is this Sasha Greene?”

“This is her.”

“Good evening. This is Rebecca from Express Careers Temp. Are you free to speak?”

Sasha almost choked on her food trying to respond to the woman.

“Absolutely,” she gasped, placing the container on the table.

“Great. We have a caterer looking for servers and waitresses for a yacht party tomorrow at Lake Travis. The pay is $10.00 an hour, plus tips. You will be required to work from 4:00-12:00 AM. Will you be able to swing that?”

“Yeah, that’s not a problem.”

“Great. I will forward you the details. There is a possibility to stay on staff. The $10.00 is the temp pay, but if you’re hired, the pay will increase to $14.00 an hour.”

“ Thanks so much for thinking of me.”

“Not a problem. Have a great night, Ms. Greene.”

Sasha hung up the phone and breathed out a sigh of relief. Things may be looking up for her after all. All she had to do was show up on time, be courteous, and flash her pearly whites. The $14.00 an hour, plus tips, might create enough cushion where she could work two jobs instead of three.

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mils_28: You never disappoint!!!This was a great Novel, with a perfect ending!

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