F**kg Sh*t! I groaned when I received another kick on my thigh. I was thrown off balance and landed flat on the floor.
Damn this big kid! My opponent was a previous Mushin Mixed Martial Arts Champion, Dick Reed. He was really good, so good. Donovan invited him to be my sparring partner this morning.
Kickboxing was a stand-up combat sports. I practiced it for self-defense, general fitness and as a contact sport. Donovan, who was a previous kickboxing champion, was my mentor. He taught me everything he knew about it.
I never experienced joining any kickboxing competition and was not interested of doing such. I had other priorities in life and many people relied on me. I was contented of inviting professional kickboxers, once in a while, to be sparring partners. We did it, thrice a week, early morning.
I sat down and slowly stood up, conserving my energy. I faced my opponent and through right timing, I whipped a jab on his face, again and again, until he became frustrated and more aggressive. He made several counter attack on me but I evaded. I was dancing around him, landing jab after jab. The technique to distract, counter attack, unbalance and gauge the opponent’s reaction before applying a powerful strike.
Then, I made a swift glance to the wall clock, it was already seven a.m. time for my coffee … I faced my opponent squarely, who already looked upset. In a speed of lightning, I gave him a fast jab that demoralized him and allowed myself to execute powerful follow-ups with my other weapons, superior speed punches and kicks.
Instantly, my opponent fell on the floor, beaten.
After fifteen minutes, I was in my bedroom, removing my clothes, to take a shower. At the same time, I was watching at my 84-inch Internet TV that was also connected to the CCTV of the entire building.
I saw Jade in the kitchen, sitting there all alone. She was probably very sleepy because her head kept on falling off her shoulders. I grinned and went directly to the bathroom.
I removed the towel on my hips and turned the shower. I let the cold water ran all over my body for a while before I shampooed my hair.
I recalled seeing Jade entered the building earlier. My eyes suddenly focused on her. I didn’t understand why I found everything about her, amusing.
I was at the back corner of the lobby talking with Dick Reed, the kickboxer. She obviously didn’t notice me, because she was focused on answering the questions of the security guards. She looked like a scared rabbit surrounded by big wolves.
I immediately called the head security of the building, Rod Brent. “Cut the interrogation, you’re scaring the girl. Let her in, now.”
In a flash, Jade was escorted by Rod, in going up to my penthouse.
Finally, I was able to sleep well last night. Our family dinner ended early because mom had a headache. I knew it was just her alibi. She obviously noticed the tension that escalated between Kendra and me.
I knew I hurt Kendra’s feelings. I have to. She knew from the very start that falling in love was not part of our deal. She asked me a question, and I just answered her honestly.
I remembered the mixed emotions that played on Kendra’s face when I said NO . She suddenly looked so pale, despite her heavy make up. I thought she was about to cry and get hysterical. But, she cleared her throat and lifted her chin up. She appeared fully recovered. Then, she gave us her practiced smile, like she always did in her print ads.
“It’s okay, Eros. You will love me sooner or later.” She confidently said, with her thick eyelashes battering on me.
You’re wrong. My brain answered. I chose not to argue with her statement. I didn’t want to pursue the issue anymore.
I took Kendra home. The truth that I didn’t love her, had no effect on her behaviour towards me. She still clung like a leech! And this time, she became more aggressive.
This should stop before she will expect too much from me. She crossed the bounderies we set in our relationship. She even looks determine to take it to a higher level.
“Kendra, we should stop seeing each other. It’s time to part ways.”
“Why? You found another f*cking buddy? HA! Men don’t discard me, Eros. I do. I’ll be the one to call a halt, not you. Remember that.” She suddenly went out of the car and banged the door forcefully.
Damn, this is my favorite car. I gritted my teeth, when she left.
She was furious. Good! It was better that way. I hope, she would leave me alone now.
I was watching Jade on the TV screen,
sleeping. She looked so tired. I continued observing her while I put on my white Tshirt and trousers.
Yeah, I pitied her, waking up so early to come here for work. But, that was her job. She was well paid for it. Work should be valued. It was a blessing and a commitment that one should take seriously.
I may be rich. But still, I rose early, worked hard and stroke a business opportunity. That was my formula for success.
I checked the time on my watch, it was eight a.m. I went out of my room and strode directly to the kitchen. Then, I saw Jade, sleeping quietly. Her arms pillowed her head on the counter table.
I observed her for a while, studying her face while sleeping. My thoughts suddenly drifted to the past.
No. She couldn’t be her.
I went to the fridge and took some eggs and sausages. Yup, I cooked my own breakfast, sometimes, dinner. I enjoyed the liberty of scanning the fridge and chose my own meal. I was a big man with a big appetite, besides I was conscious of what I ate. That was part of keeping fit and healthy.
After I toasted some bread, and fried the eggs and the sausages, I put the food on the kitchen table. My breakfast was ready, except for my coffee. I was really anticipating the taste of my coffee since I woke up.
I looked at Jade, and she was still sleeping peacefully. I went closer to her to wake her. Then, I noticed the hi-tech CCTV camera blinked with a faint screeching sound and moved slowly to focus. Damn!
“Where’s my coffee, Miss Collins! I’ve been calling you in the intercom, three times already.” I lied. “I don’t tolerate my employees sleeping while at work!”
Her eyes suddenly open wide. Shock and terror was visible on her face. She immediately scrambled off her seat and rubbed her eyes, fixing her hair and her dress.
“I… I’m sorry, Mr. Petrakis. That won’t happen again… promise.”
“Make sure you keep your word, because next time I’ll caught you sleeping, you will be automatically fired .”
“Er… I won’t do that again, sir… I swear.” She was flushing with embarassment.
I nodded and went to the kitchen table to sit down. “I want my coffee now.”
“Yes… yes sir.” She replied and ran towards the coffee machine.
I started eating my breakfast while waiting for my coffee. After about three minutes, Jade put my coffee in front of me. The aroma of the coffee was glorious and delicious. It gave me a very pleasurable feeling.
Huh? What did he say? “Er… what, sir?” I asked him again, making sure that I heard right.
“I said, sit.” He said again, pointing at the chair in front of him. Hmph! I suddenly remembered dad saying Sit! Doggy, sit! When he was trying to teach, Shaggy, my dog to sit down.
Just like an obedient dog, I sat in front of him, in the kitchen table.
“Eat.” He said, pushing a plate of two toasted bread, an egg and two sausages.
My temper suddenly rose. He was talking to me in monosyllables, like I was a dog, or a
toddler. I thought he was so smart and studied in an exclusive school. Where’s his manners?
“No, thank you. I… I’m not hungry. I already had my breakfast.”
He suddenly put down his spoon and fork, then glared at me. “And what time was that?”
“Um… around 3:30 a.m.”
“It’s already 8 o’clock Miss Collins. Stop talking and eat.” He firmly said and continued eating his breakfast.
I slowly took the spoon and fork. I felt so awkward, having breakfast with my boss. I looked at the food… hmmm… it smelled so delicious and my stomach suddenly gurgled.
This was really embarrassing. Mr. Petrakis caught me sleeping in my first day of work. I wondered why Doris didn’t wake me up when she cook his breakfast.
I ate my breakfast with gusto. I didn’t realize I was so hungry. I was halfway done when I noticed him watching me, while sipping his coffee. With a swift glance, I looked at him then on his plate. It was empty.
This is getting so weird. Why am I eating breakfast with my boss?
“You should eat plenty, you are so thin. You can’t perform your job well with an empty stomach.” Preach! Oh my goodness, and he was even looking at me like I was a stray pet, eating his scraps.
I didn’t have a choice but to stay quiet. He was my boss, and I was at his mercy. I need the job or else, my family and I would starve. But – if only… if only I had a choice…
Be calm Jade… take a deep breath. I said to myself.
I was surprised when he suddenly stood up and said. “When you’re done. You can go.”
What? I’m done here? My eyebrows lifted up in surprise.
“Sleep early tonight, so you won’t be sleeping at work tomorrow.”
“Er… yes, sir.”
He nodded and immediately left me alone in the kitchen.
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