Again, my lovelies, this is Deep Ocean: Diaries of a Pink Giraffe's Companion piece, not a stand alone story.
All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
This takes place the same day than the previous EPOV. January 5th around noon.
After talking to Eva, Edward goes back to his hotel, while Bella wakes up decided to talk to Mike and ask him for some time to think. (Chapter 10 of the main story).
I arrived the Twilight's knowing that I wouldn't be able to concentrate to get some work done, so instead of heading to my office upstairs, I decided to make a round, and see how things were going in the hotel.
As soon as I entered the lobby, Lauren started making gestures for me to approach the entrance desk where she worked. I reluctantly started to walk toward her, mentally preparing myself for her rant. How I ever dated her was something beyond me, but accepting hiring her after that was, to put it squarely, the most stupid thing I did in my life.
Scratch that. Second thing.
The most stupid thing was letting her convince me to hire her boyfriend the previous month.
I knew Lauren wasn't the sharpest tool in the toolbox, so hoping her boyfriend would be any better had been a big mistake. She had played the 'victim' card, and ultimately, she had played me. She said she had loved me, and I had dumped her without thinking twice about it. She wasn't entirely wrong, I had started dating her without giving it a second thought, and that was my mistake, dumping her had been a very informed decision.
I had met her in the opening night of one of the Twilight's new lounges.
Rosalie kept nagging me to dedicate a part of the new renovated wing to offer other kind of entertaining aside from the gambling, she said it was working in Vegas, that it'll be good to offer all kinds of amenities for the non gamblers to secure us the visit of spouses and significant others too. I wasn't very excited about the idea, but we settled for a few concessions operating under contract as almost independent businesses, so the investment was minimum, and I didn't have to pay much attention to them.
That regrettable night, I thought that I could just relax and enjoy the opening, so I let my guard down.
It was all it took.
Next thing I knew I was in one of the suites with a very tipsy and agreeable blonde. Somehow I must have thought that having her warm body next to me in the morning was a good thing, so instead of being a jerk and getting rid of her, I started dating her.
In the beginning she was sweet and solicitous, but soon she began demanding. Of all her demands, the ones that I could fulfil easier were the ones that involved buying her stuff, so I shut down my brain, and bought her whatever she wanted. I couldn't really dedicate her all the time she wanted, and I really couldn't find it in me to even take her to my penthouse.
The penthouse was my shelter, I had never thought of bringing girls there, until Bella, it felt too intimate, and it made me feel vulnerable. Deep inside I knew that I wasn't willing to share the real me with any of the girls, but I always ended up convincing myself that none of them usually stayed around for long.
Lauren hadn't been my first mistake; I've learnt the hard way that when you inherit two casinos and a solid bank account, the female population starts to want a piece of you. I had experienced all the variations they gave to the word 'piece', and 99% of them weren't as flattening to my masculinity as one would think. They mostly wanted the money and the status, which brought the situation to a whole different level; they would either try to get me to marry them or to knock them up. Sometimes one thing was closely associated to the other.
Then there were others who wanted to climb the ladder, so I was a nice step in their way to bigger fishes.
And the last group was the most distressing one, the cougars. Random rich old ladies, some of them married, some of them not even interested in relapsing, but all of them wanting some eye-candy to parade on their arms in events, and to warm their beds at night.
So when Lauren started eyeing engagement rings instead of the usual jewellery she went for in the past, and her demands suddenly included a trip to Vegas to meet my family, I knew I had had enough.
Of course that wasn't the last thing I've heard of her, a few months after we broke up, she insisted in talking to me about something important, and that was the talk that got me to hire her. I wasn't really the asshole everybody thought, when she said she was about to get evicted from her apartment and asked for a job, I couldn't deny it to her.
Apparently I had some big trouble saying no to weeping girls, because she won again when she asked me to hire her current boyfriend.
I yet had to determine the reasons behind that relationship. Yorkie wasn't anywhere near the kind of guy she would date, so our theories were crazy. Jazz, always the pervert, insinuated that he must have been hung as horse. I tended to think he was wrong, but then again, it wasn't something I was willing to find out…
Rosalie's theory seemed more realistic, though I didn't want to think Lauren still held any hope of dating me again. In spite of what I wanted to believe or not, Rose thought she had Yorkie to try to make me jealous.
Anyway, knowing how Lauren's delusional mind worked, it made sense.
"Edward! There you are! I thought we've lost you," she said in that sugary tone that always made me nervous. I could handle bitchy, but pouty, honey coated shit made me wary.
"Lost me? How did you even know I wasn't upstairs?" I replied defensively.
"That's for me to know and for you to find out," she teased, batting her eyelashes in a way she must have thought it was sexy, but looked as if she had something in her eye.
I wanted to gag. And to get the hell out of there. Not sure in which order.
"I really don't care, Lauren, stalking is your thing, not mine," I told her dryly. It was a big fat lie considering my latest hobbies, but she didn't need to know that.
"You're being mean to me again, Edward," she pouted. "Eric told me you had a woman in your suite last night. You know I'd forgive you if you asked me nicely, you don't need to go around looking for a hooker…"
And that sealed the deal. No way in hell she was referring to Bella as hooker.
"Lauren, let's get this straight," I told her in my lowest, most menacing voice, "what I do in my suite is none of your business; and if you ever call Bella anything other than her name again, you'll find your ass in the street, and I'll do everything in my power to make your life miserable. Understood?"
She stared at me with her eyes wide open; her expression was almost a grimace as she nodded.
It was going to be the hell of day for the looks of it.
I headed to the security room instead of going to the gambling area as I have planned before. The last thing I needed was strangling a croupier before lunch.
I briefly thought of Bella while I was walking there. How she had bared her soul to me, how it hadn't felt uncomfortable taking her to Eva's or having dinner together in my suite. There was something about her that made me feel at ease, something that beckoned me to show her parts of me I had never wanted to share with anybody.
Jazz was all over the computers as usual, listening to that crazy ass music he usually played when he was alone. It was a haunting melody with a plunking piano, and it sounded vintage, though I was sure it wasn't real 60's pop.
A raspy voice sang "I can't breathe underwater like I used to, before I met you…" and the true of his words wasn't lost to me.
I was falling for the girl, and she belonged to another man.
The Playlist for this chappie is:
Duran Duran ~ All she wants is
Mad Season ~ River of Deceit
Man Man ~ Doo Right
A/N: Thanks to the lovelies notthatamanda and neyvada for suffering me in Twitter, and giving me ideas for the story. If you want to join us, the link is in my profile.