Friday, 29 January 2010

“Shall we, my lady?” It was like nothing had changed. It was like she’d never accidently found me in bed with Lucy. It was like we hadn’t had a fight. It was like we were whatever we had been before – husband and wife. I’d spent my life dreading commitment, dreading having to marry some girl who I was sure I was incapable of loving, dreading having to spend the rest of my life with her… but as I gazed into Ella’s green eyes, I realized she’d changed everything. Ella took my hand and electricity buzzed through our fingertips. “Of course,” she said, smiling. “My Lord.” *** The Billion Dollar Girl Ͼ Ella Castillo Ͽ I stared out of the carriage window for a few moments, just indulging in the feelings tingling against my skin. The soft moon was one, the huge round orb hanging in the night sky that cast a gentle light onto the surrounded. The second was the warmth of the blanket Ash and I were currently sharing (I wondering if Ash had quickly made a call while I was in the bathroom, and asked them to include something to keep me warm. It wouldn’t surprise me. Ash thought of everything). Or rather, Ash’s warmth. And the third was the taste of champagne against my lips. It electrified my whole body, making me feel alive. “So how is it?” he said, over the gentle clip-clop of the horse’s hooves. We moved through the carefully maintained path slowly, but I was in no hurry. This was one of the best, most romantic moments of my life and I intended to savor it… no matter Ash’s true intentions. I turned back to Ash. He was smiling. Ash looked so perfect under the moonlight it was almost criminal. His skin shone, the red lips of his especially dark and even his hair, though messy and untamed, looked good. Not for the first time, I wondered why Ash seemed to like me. He was funny, rich and damn handsome. So why was he doing all of…this…for me? His face blurred a little and I blinked, suddenly feeling dizzy. His grin slid off his face when he noticed the tears shining in my eyes. “Hey,” he said, sounding concerned. He leaned in to brush away the drops of liquid. “Hey, Ella, what’s wrong?” I didn’t reply and just stared at Ash’s face. I cried a lot lately. I used to think of myself as a strong, independent woman who could take on the world. It was only recently that I realized how truly weak I was. I depended on Ash. No, it as more than that. I needed him. When I couldn’t look at him face any more, I just looked down. “I don’t know,” I mumbled through cracked lips. “I just…” Ash seemed to understand. Slowly, gently, he pulled me into his arms and I just lay, my head on his chest, listening to his rapid heartbeat. He was so warm. Almost unconsciously, I held my fingers over his heart. Was that me doing that to him? How? I had no idea what I was doing. I wanted to know, so badly. After all, it was only fair since he seemed to know what he was doing to me. “Do you want me to sing for you?” Ash said, his deep voice making his chest rumble against my cheek. I smiled. “No.” “Oh.” “Don’t take it personally,” I laughed. “I just don’t want to hear you sing.” “I’m an excellent singer, actually.” “Is that what your Mommy says?” I teased. Ash froze, his whole body tensing up beneath mine. Even though my mind was woozy and I couldn’t think straight (a side-effect of the alcohol, perhaps?), I could tell I’d struck a nerve. I looked up, at his face and saw him wear an expression I’d never seen him wear before. It was a mix of sad and hopelessness. That face made me want to hold him and never let go. “I’m sorry,” I muttered, under my breath. I squeezed his chest clumsily and rested my head on Ash’s shoulder again. “I shouldn’t have said that.” “It’s not your fault,” he sighed. “I should be less touchy about the subject.” He glanced down at me and frowned. “Hey, Ella, are you okay?” “I’m fine,” I laughed. It sounded weird, even to me. Then I frowned too. “Wait, why are there two of you?” “Ella, are you drunk?” “Maybe.” “But I only gave you a few glassfuls…” he said, looked panicked. “Ella, how do you feel?” “Dizzy. Worn out. Tired. In fact, I think I’m going to go to sleep…” My eyelids were suddenly feeling very heavy and I let them droop again. “Ella, I’m sorry for doing this to you,” Ash said quickly, as if he wanted to tell me everything before I blacked out. “I’m sorry the night hasn’t been the best, what with the temperature on the roof and for making you cry and for getting you drunk. I’m sorry I –” I shut him up by pressing his lips to mine. His mouth was pleasantly warm against my lips and he tasted of champagne. He smelt like his cologne, the way he always smelt. Even with my numbed senses, I could feel our hearts beating against each other frantically, and the delicious feeling I always felt on the rare occasions we kissed. A moment later, I pulled away and glared at him. The Billion Dollar Girl “You talk too much,” I complained before I let myself succumb to the sleep. *** ῼ Ash Castillo ῼ Her head fell back onto my chest. I sat frozen, on the bench, my lips still throbbing from the gentle kiss. It suddenly occurred to me that Ella had never kissed me before. I’d kissed her, of course, several times before, whether it was because I was angry or simply because she looked so damn cute. Nevertheless, though this kiss was soft, a lot softer than any other of our kisses, it seemed different somehow. It meant something. It was Ella who wanted to kiss me this time and not the other way around. Just this fact had my heart racing. I enjoyed the carriage ride for a few more minutes, enjoying the feel of Ella’s body pressed against mine, her flowery smell and the beautiful expression on her moonlit face, before telling the carriage driver to quickly get us back to the entrance. I’d had a whole event planned with fireworks and violins serenading us, but somehow that kiss was a hundred times better than any cheesy romantic thing I could have planned. When we were at the entrance, the carriage driver opened the door for us and I thanked her. Scooping Ella’s body up with ease, I carried her back to the car. The driver opened the door and I got in, gently placing her into the seat. I got in as well and we were driving. I watched Ella’s sleeping face. She looked so peaceful, so childlike I almost fell for her again. As I brushed a wavy tendril of hair away from her eyes, Ella gave a little groan that sounded a lot like, “Ash”. I froze, staring at her intensely. Was that what she’d really just said? Had she just said my name? Was she dreaming about me? I watched her carefully the whole ride, but she didn’t say anything again. *** The Billion Dollar Girl Ͼ Ella Castillo Ͽ When I opened my eyes after the long, unexpectedly blissful night sleep, I noticed three things. Firstly, the pounding headache. You know, one of those headaches that made you want to curl up into a ball and cry. It took me a while to stop noticing that, and notice the other things around me. Namely, the bare muscular arm that was draped over my chest. I stared down at it, my brain too slow and sluggish to realize whose it was. But before I could even attempt to work out whose arm it was, I noticed something else. The ceiling. An ornate but understated wooden ceiling, carved with delicate little flowers that wound around the corners of the room. It was beautiful, the kind of thing you would find at in an upper-class house. And it was something I’d never seen before. Which raised the question…Where was I? The owner of the arm mumbled something and I turned to him. It took me a few more seconds to realize who I had in fact slept next to. Ash. And he was naked. Giving a strangled shriek, I leapt away from him, clutching the silk sheets to my body. Looking around, I tried to pinpoint exactly where I was, but it was impossible. Had Ash kidnapped me? “Why are you screaming?” Ash mumbled sleepily, turning away. “Because…we’re in…bed…” I stuttered, unable to accurately express my anger. “Us…naked…” “You’re not naked,” Ash pointed out as he sat up, revealing more of his sexy chest. I couldn’t help but stare at the wall of hard muscle Ash had just managed to expose by “accidently” letting the covers fall. It took me a while to take in what Ash had said. I looked down and realized that he was right. I wasn’t naked, but in what I roughly remembered as having worn yesterday. “And technically, I’m not naked either. I’m wearing boxers.” I looked down at the part of Ash I’d been avoiding and saw cute little red boxers with chickens all over them. Then I blushed, realizing that I’d accidently been tricked into staring at Ash’s crotch. “You’re right,” I mumbled, quickly looking up at the ceiling again. “You are wearing boxers.” “You sound a little disappointed,” Ash said and though I wasn’t looking at him, I could tell he was smirking. “Did you want to see more…?” “No!” I protested, pulling the sheets over my face so I couldn’t see anything, should he decide to flash me. I winced when my loud shout made my head throb. I could hear Ash laughing. The weight shifted on the bed and I could tell that he was right next to me. I clutched the soft sheets to my face even firmer, not wanting my innocence to be snatched away in such a manner. “I was just kidding,” he said, his voice muffled as he pressed his face into the pillow. He tugged gently at the covers. “Ella, let go.” Slowly, I let go of my grip on the sheets and felt them slide out of my grasp. I glared at Ash’s smug face, bemused by my innocence. “Not funny,” I snapped. “Don’t worry, Ella,” Ash said, quickly leaning in to press his lips against my forehead. He put his lips to my ear. “We’ve got plenty of time for that in the future…” I felt myself blush again at his lewd words. Even in the warmth of the cozy bed, I could feel Ash’s body heat against mine. A shiver ran down my spine. The way Ash smelt in the morning was even better than the delicious smell of his cologne. Ash smelt of the sun. That was the only way I could explain it. He smelt like the sun and the grass and the flowers and the trees. Ash smelt like everything I could ever want, or had ever wanted. He smelt amazing. I found myself burying my head in his neck and inhaling deeply. When I came to my senses, I froze. Damn. I still might be little drunk. “Ella…” Ash rumbled, sounding amused. “What are you doing…?” I had no idea what to say, so I did that only thing that my hung-over brain could think of, something I would never ever have usually done. I bit his neck. Ash pulled away sharply, glaring at me. “What the hell was that for?” he said, rubbing his neck. I hadn’t bitten him hard. It was just a little nip, but apparently Ash had no tolerance for pain. I stuck my tongue out. “Payback.” Ash just stared at me for a few more moments, before grinning widely. “I think I like drunk Ella,” he said. The Billion Dollar Girl *** ῼ Ash Castillo ῼ “Where are we?” Ella asked, her voice muffled by the door. I took this as a sign that she was ready and so I re-entered the room. She was stood by the window, brushing her long hair. She turned to face me, raising her eyebrows questioningly. I felt my heart thumping. Did Ella really not realize how beautiful she looked in that dress? I shook my head. Concentrate, Ash. You’re not an inexperienced little virgin any more, so stop acting like one. “I bought this place when my Uncle died,” I said, joining her at the window. We both stared out at the lush lawns, decorated in a sense that could only be described as Parisian Chic. It was one of our best properties in Europe and I sincerely wished that I could visit more. I pointed at the circular fountain in the middle of the grass, with delicate white lilies floating on the surface of the water. “Those were his favorites.” I stared out at the gardens, a flood of memories engulfing me again. I no longer felt sorry for myself about what had happened. I was the last person who deserved sympathy. I just felt sad at what had happened. To my surprise, I felt Ella take my hand. I turned to her, astonished and saw her sad smile. “I’m sorry,” she said softly, squeezing my fingers. “I had no idea how lonely you were.” I stared into those honest green eyes, and in that moment I almost didn’t believe that a girl like Ella would be capable of deceit and betrayal. Well, I had to take responsibility for some of it, I guess. I hadn’t told her the truth about the Lucy incident yet. But now wasn’t the time. But there was something in Ella’s face that made me feel so loved, yet so alone at the same time. For the first time in a long time, I felt unsure. I didn’t have my usual self-confidence. Which was why I was prompted to say the next few words. “Do you promise to never leave me?” I whispered, the words so quiet even I could not hear them. “Do you promise?” Ella stared at me for a few moments, and those lucid green eyes clouded over. She looked away. “I promise,” she lied. I grit my teeth. Ella, one day, I’m going to make you promise to me for real. And that day I’ll hold on to you and never let go. *** Ͼ Ella Castillo Ͽ “We are we going today?” I asked as Ash sprinted through the lawn. With our joined hands, I had no other option but to run along with him. “Hey! Ash! Slow down.” “I’ve got a surprise planned,” Ash yelled. He seemed to enjoy running a lot more than I was. Well, I guess the son of a multi-billionaire rarely got the chance to really let go and run around like a madman. He also seemed surprisingly nimble in a suit. “We’re going shopping until lunch, then I’m going to take you somewhere you’re going to love.” “Shopping?” I repeated, panting a little from the running. I usually hated the word. Did that surprise you? Probably not, since I totally come across as the type of girl who loves shopping in malls. “That sounds nice,” I lied. “Oh, don’t sound like that,” Ash said, not out of breath at all. Now that we were closer to the entrance, I could see the car. It still seemed very far away. I wondered if I would die of exhaustion before I reached it. “Girls should love to shop.” I rolled my eyes. Had Ash met me? “Plus, I have to get you something for our one month anniversary,” Ash laughed. My heart skipped a beat. He turned back to look at me for a moment. “What, did you really think I’d forget? James tells me girls take the whole thing very seriously. He helped me plan the whole thing.” Despite myself, I smiled. To be honest, I’d been too caught up in a whirlwind of events to dwindle too long on the fact that we’d been married for a month already – has it really been a month? It seemed to be a lot shorter than that. “What, you’ve never celebrated a one month anniversary before?” I teased. We’d reached the car and Ash finally stopped. I tried my best to stop panting. “Not with a girlfriend before,” Ash said. The way he said it made my heart beat fast. Girlfriend? Did that mean Ash was my boyfriend? I’d never had a boyfriend before. I’d been so distracted by the enormous words like contract, marriage and husband that I’d never even thought about the smaller, sweeter words. I smiled. Boyfriend. It was a nice word. “I’ve never gone out with a girl for as long as a month.” The Billion Dollar Girl I raised my eyebrows. “Really? Do you realize how much of a playboy you sound?” “Well, I’m just honest about my emotions,” Ash said, opening the car door for me. I loved how is eyes twinkled as he smiled. I slid into the car. “I’ve never liked a girl long enough to go out with her for a month.” At this, I gave a little gasp. I couldn’t help it. The way he had said it made me feel special. “I’ve never liked a girl long enough to go out with her for a month”. It was stupid, I know. Ash was only staying with me because the contract was binding us together. That was all. That was everything we could ever be. But still, those words made my heart flutter. “So what do you want for our anniversary?” Ash asked. I smiled at him, drawn back into the simple world where nothing mattered. Where we were two lovers, not two business partners, where Ash’s life hadn’t been ripped apart years ago, where I wasn’t married to Ash simply for the money. I just smiled at Ash and replied teasingly, “Shouldn’t the guy come up with that?” “Well, it’s hard,” he said, hanging his head. His blonde fringe fell over his blue eyes. “I’m not smart enough to know what kind of books you would like. Maybe something on Quantum Physics?” I rolled my eyes. “Jesus, you’re just like everybody else. Do you how many books I got at Christmas? It was completely ridiculous. Go with something pretty. You can’t go wrong with pretty.” “As you wish,” Ash said, smiling. He turned to the driver. “Go to the nearest jewelry shop, please.” *** ῼ Ash Castillo ῼ I watched Ella’s eyes widen at the beautiful multicolored gems and the bands of gold at platinum that surrounded us from all sides. I loved seeing that look on her face, that expression of awe. It made everything worth it. The shop had the air of an upper-class French boutique and was one of the most unique jewelry shops in world. We walked through the cabinets filled with prize jewels. Ella gaped at each and every one, her eyes never leaving the gleaming jewelry, but I was too busy watching her reactions. “Which one do you want?” I asked, staring at her face. “Uh…” she mumbled, tearing her wide eyes away from the displays long enough to give me an awestruck look. “I don’t know…they’re all so pretty…” “Do you want to try anything on?” Ella bit on her lips, her eyes still looking around the shop. Her eyes fell on a small butterfly pendant hanging on a simple chain and I could almost sense her falling in love with it. I would’ve been jealous if it hadn’t been an inanimate object. “That one?” I prompted. She nodded, wordless. I turned to the lady behind the counter, who smiled and reached for the key behind the desk and unlocked the cabinet in the wall. She gently lifted the necklace from its stand and passed it to me. I softly urged Ella to turn around so I could fasten it onto her neck. I enjoyed the goosebumps I unintentionally left of her skin, and may have taken longer than I could’ve to fasten the chain. Once I was done, the delicate butterfly hung there, over her sharp collarbones. We both stared at her reflection in the mirror, overwhelmed. In this lighting, it looked as if the wings themselves were flapping. “It’s Italian,” the lady said in a thick French accent. “Handcrafted. It’s one of a kind, made by a master jeweler just before he had died. The delicate butterfly, a single chiseled piece of diamond, symbolizes the transition between captivity and freedom. The blood-red rubies symbolize sacrifice. It’s a prized piece of mine, and there are not many women out there who could pull it off, but I have to say, it suits you immensely. You have good taste, madam.” Ella was still wordless as she looked at herself in the bright glow of the lights. The butterfly’s wings cast a long shadow onto her creamy skin. Since she could not speak, I spoke for her. “We’ll take it,” I said to the woman. “What is your price?” Ella turned to me, mouth open, about to protest but the woman beat her to it. “Monsieur,” she said, shaking her head. “This piece is completely priceless. It is a unique masterpiece and cannot sell it to simply anybody.” The Billion Dollar Girl “I am not simply anybody,” I insisted, confidently. “I’m Asher Castillo, soon to be CEO of Castillo Corporations. I own a business empire that stretches all over the world. Surely you have heard of me? I ask you again, madam, what is your price?” Ella tugged at my sleeve, shaking her head, but I ignored her, focusing on the woman, who gave me a long, searching look before speaking again. “Two million Euros,” she said. I smiled. That was more like it. “Then we’ll take it. Check okay?” The woman disappeared behind the counter to find a suitable box for the prized jewel and I pulled out my checkbook. Ella stared, open-mouthed at me. “Are you crazy?” she hissed. “That’s almost three million dollars! Ash, what were you thinking?” Grinning at her, I signed the check. “Don’t worry about it,” I said, kissing her forehead. She blushed as usual, despite her panic over my spending habits. “It’s a present from me, okay? Plus, you’re worth a billion dollars now. You should at least look like it.” Ella did not appear to be calming down, but it was too late. The woman reappeared and quickly but efficiently unfastened the chain from Ella’s neck. The platinum chain fell, along with the pendant and the woman carefully placed it into the smooth velvet box. She handed it over to Ella as I passed her the check. “Thank you,” I said, giving the woman a polite smile. She returned to her spot behind the desk, just as I turned to face Ella. “Now,” I said, smirking at her face – the perfect mixture of adorable confusion and shock, “do you want to buy anything else?” It was amazing how fast she dragged me out of that shop. *** Ͼ Ella Castillo Ͽ I sat in my seat of the car, sulking. I knew it was a stupid thing to sulk about and it made no sense for me to sulk, but I was still sulking. Ash glanced over to me a few times, but kept looking away, bemused. That just made me want to sulk even harder. “Ella…” he finally said. I turned my head away from him and glared gloomily out of the window. “Are you sulking?” “No,” I snapped, crossing my arms. “Because you’re pouting.” “So?” “Because that just made me think that you were sulking. Was I wrong?” Ignoring his smart-ass little comment, I just stared out of the window harder. “I’m going to take that as a ‘no’,” Ash said. “So. Care to tell me what you’re annoyed about?” “I’m not annoyed about anything.” Ash sighed and grabbed onto my arm, forcing me to face him. “Ella,” he said seriously. Those blue eyes bore into mine. “Please tell me what you’re upset about. When you’re sad, I feel sad as well.” I bit on my lip, but that puppy face weakened my resolve. Damn, was Ash a smooth talker. “It’s just…” I said, in voice. I was aware that I sounded like a whiny child, but I couldn’t help it. “I don’t like you spending that much money on me.” “Oh,” he laughed, as if it wasn’t really important. I frowned. “Is that it? Well, would you mind telling me exactly what you find so objectionable about it? Don’t you like the necklace? I saw the way you were looking at it. I paid for it, so you shouldn’t worry about the price.” “It’s not really about the money…” I said, looking down at my shoes. “It’s just…whenever you spend money on me, I’m just reminded of the fact that you bought me with money too.” Ash didn’t reply, so I decided to look up to him. His face had a hard, unreadable expression. “I mean,” I continued. “That’s all I am to you, right? Just another plaything that can be easily purchased, as long as you flash that fancy checkbook. That’s all I could ever be.” We stared at each other for a few long moments. Ash’s eyes were filled with sadness and an emotion that scared me as much as it excited me. His beautiful face, the face that haunted some of my better dreams, was serious, and when he opened his mouth I knew he was going to say something that would change our relationship forever, for better or for worse. And he would’ve said it, if only the driver hadn’t chosen that exactly moment to stop the car and wind down the window that separated us from him. The Billion Dollar Girl “We’ve arrived at the helipad,” he said brightly. His cheerful expression disappeared when he saw both of us quickly away from each other, the tension still tangible in the air. “Thank you,” I managed to choke out, before I opened my car door and stepped out of the car into the cold air. When I saw car’s weight shift, I knew Ash had done the same thing. When the driver drove away again, there was suddenly no barrier between us and we both stared into each other’s faces, wondering what the hell to say. Then Ash’s face broke into a small smile. “Do you like helicopters?” I blinked, surprised by the sudden change of subject. “Yeah, I guess.” “Well, today’s your lucky day,” he said and, flashing a quick grin, pointed at something behind me. I turned around and gaped at the huge black mass of metal and blades that I had somehow missed. When my back was turned, he had somehow gotten really close to me. I jumped when I felt his hot fingers touch my skin. “Because you’re going to ride this beauty,” he whispered, into my ear, his smooth voice making me tingle that way it always did. Then he was gone from my side and I saw Ash again, walking towards the helicopter. He turned around, giving me a beautiful smile that played havoc with my pulse rate. “Come on!” he called. I watched him leave for a second, slightly disappointed that he hadn’t been able to say the thing he had wanted to say. But should I be disappointed? I could already imagine what kind of thing Ash could’ve said at that point: “I’m sorry I mislead you, but I’ve always thought of you as an employee.” “Well, you were certainly were easy to buy, weren’t you?” “I’m never had any feelings for you. Sorry.” I tried to work out if this way was better. But I hated never finding out the truth, always hanging in the balance, unsure of how he truly felt and where I stood. It would’ve been better if he’d been able to tell me the truth. I sighed. “Hey, Ella,” Ash called again. I looked up and saw that he was by the helicopter already. “You want to come or not?” Unable to help myself, I smiled at him and started making my way towards Ash. Who cared if he never really loved me? I should stop over-thinking everything and just enjoy the now. Ash grasped my waist and help hoist me up, into the helicopter. I ignored the hot flush I got from his touch, and just put on the noise-cancelling headphones that Ash had passed to me. I nodded at the helicopter pilot, who nodded back. Ash gave me two thumbs up. “Ready to go?” he mouthed. “As always,” I mouthed back. *** The Billion Dollar Girl ῼ Ash Castillo ῼ I watched Ella stare down at the snow-capped peaks we were currently flying over. I loved that part of her, the childish part that seemed to be capable of taking normal, ordinary life and making it something exciting. But even I had to admit the view from the window was impressive. That was the thing I loved about flying in a helicopter. You felt like you were above the world, looking down on it, gliding over it. You didn’t get that feeling in a jet or a private plane…or God forbid, a commercial flight. We were nearing our destination and the pilot was dropping altitude. Already, I could see the ski slopes of Chamonix. I glanced at Ella, who was gaping down at the ski resort. “You didn’t,” she mouthed, wide-eyed. I didn’t move back, just smiled at her and looked away, watching the resort getting closer and closer. I could see the ski lifts already, and smiled approvingly when I saw they were empty. I’d had to book out the entire ski resort, of course, since I absolutely despised the idea of skiing down a slope surrounded by fat teenagers and their obnoxious parents. We landed gently onto the helipad that had been especially built for our arrival. The blades slowed down and I pulled off my headphones. Leaning it, I did the same for Ella. As soon as the headphones were off, she started spewing a torrent of words. “I can’t believe it,” she gasped. “You brought me skiing! Ash, I can’t believe you actually brought me here…Ash, I –” “Don’t worry about it,” I said, smiling. “It was nothing. When you have money, the whole world is within your grasp.” But as soon as I said this, I remembered the conversation we’d had in the car. Ella clearly remembered too, because the excited expression on her face slipped for just a moment, before she hitched it back on. “I don’t think I’m dressed suitably, though,” she confessed, as if it was a great sin. She was shivering violently in the tight-fitting dress she’d put on this morning, and I cursed myself for not considering the temperature. “Don’t worry about it,” I smiled. “I have some warm clothes for you, and all the ski equipment we’ll need.” She nodded, looking overwhelmed. I glanced at the pilot, who was pulling out the bag of equipment I’d asked to be packed into the helicopter with us. He tossed me the bag and I caught it easily. I glanced over and saw that the ski resort’s manager had arrived as well. “Greetings, dear visitors,” he said, his voice deep and calm. Though his words were fluent, it sounded rehearsed. “And welcome to Chamonix, the leading French ski resort with some of world’s most –” “Save it,” I said, interrupting him. Ella’s lips were turning blue. “Just tell us were the changing rooms are. And they better be warm.” *** Ͼ Ella Castillo Ͽ I came out of the room I’d used to change in, feeling very bulky in the padded clothes Ash had handed me. When Ash saw me, he doubled other, laughing. I glared at him. “Shut up,” I muttered. “It’s not funny.” “Sorry,” Ash smirked. “But you look like a snowman caught in a paint accident.” Ignoring him, I decided to make my way out of the changing rooms and started following the signs to the entrance. In the unusually empty resort, I easily heard Ash run after me and a few moments later, he appeared beside me, the equipment bag slung over his shoulder. “Are ski resort usually this empty?” I asked. “I hired it out,” he replied simply. I rolled my eyes. Typical Ash. He wouldn’t survive five minutes with a regular credit card. I stepped out of the building, the cold wind immediately biting into my exposed neck and face, though thankfully my body stayed warm under the thick, insulated clothing. Then I started walking, moving towards the direction of a ski slope I’d seen. “If you keep going that way,” Ash said, still behind me. “You’ll fall off the mountain. Beginner slopes are that way.” He pointed in the opposite direction. Trying to maintain my dignity, I turned around and walked in the direction he was pointing in. Pretty soon, my feet left the concrete and I was enjoying the feeling of snow crunching under my boots. Snow didn’t happen often in a city like New York, and when it did, it was pretty much guaranteed to turn into disgusting brown mush in about five minutes. So the pure white snow made a nice change. The Billion Dollar Girl I almost slipped, but Ash reached forward quickly and grabbed onto my arm, keeping me upright. We both stared at each other for a moment and I blushed under the intensity of his stare. “What are you looking at?” I finally asked, shy all of a sudden. “Your ears. They’re bright red.” Oh. Romantic. “Hang on a second,” Ash said, dropping the bag to the floor and quickly unzipping it. I watched him curiously as he rummaged around the bag. Finally, he produced a bright orange hat with a giant bobble on top that was clearly not chosen by my fashion adviser. He pulled it onto my head, so low it covered my eyes as well as my ears. “There you go,” Ash laughed. I pulled it up again to glare at him. In moments like these, we were so close it made my heart warm. I wished every day could be like right now. *** ῼ Ash Castillo ῼ “I haven’t given you poles, because they’re really for turning and all you’re going to be doing is sliding,” I said, in instructor mode, “but what you have to do for the basic position, is to first turn your skis in, like this, making a V shape, and press down. This stops you from moving. You want your knees to be bent a little, like this.” I demonstrated. “But if you want to move, turn your feet out your skis are straight.” I did this, and started to glide down the snow slowly for about a second. “This move is called something I can’t actually remember, but I think it’s one of the beginner moves. Why don’t you try?” Ella stared at me dubiously, as if to say, ‘Are you joking? I can’t do that.’ “Go on,” I prompted. “I’ll hold onto your waist until I think you’re ready to go it yourself.” I unlocked my skis and grabbed her waist. Ella gave me worried look before clumsily positioning her legs into the pose I’d taught her. I held onto her waist as she slowly started sliding down the slope. This was one of the reasons I wanted to teach her myself, rather than have an instructor. I didn’t like the idea of anyone touching her. “I’m doing it,” she gasped. “Ash, look at me, I’m doing it!” I grinned at her childlike innocence and nodded along. “Yes, you are. Now go into the second position.” “Okay…” Brow furrowed with concentration, Ella bent her knees, gliding a little faster. “Wow,” she gasped. “Look how fast I’m going! Ash, am I doing it right?”

12 comments:

  1. you stole the story you son of a bitch stop lying the date on the blog and the time stamp in the url is different.

    go fucking do sonething with you're own imagination and stoping using someone elses

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    Replies
    1. ? Really? Who is the real author?

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    2. https://www.wattpad.com/user/hisracingheart here is the profile of the actual author who wrote the story. I hope this gets removed because she is just plain plagiarizing another author's work. she deserves to get sued, not bitch-slamming another author that she herself copied.

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    3. You Son of A Bitch. Stop lying that someone stole your story. The time period is Different in the URL. Let the real writer complete the story.

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    4. This motherfucker's the biggest plagiariser. Disgusting.

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  2. Please take this down, you are plagiarizing.

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  3. U fucking bitch honestly I don't even know how the fuck you even have the heart to do that.You just steal another person's story and then say it's yours? Honestly,how do you even live with this?And,you say that you are gonna sue her?? You do realize that she can sue you right?

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  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  5. You bitch you plagiarized @hisracingheart how dare you

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  6. This entire blog is just messed up! It's just sick that you would even think of plagiarizing one of the best authors on Wattpad and think you can get away with it. People work hard on their stories! @hisracingheart deserves all of the credit! It's one thing to plagiarize and another to claim the real author has plagiarized.

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  7. Fucking plagiarized, you need to go take this shit down cause @hisracingheart is the real author
    Im pretty sure the only reason you fucking plagiarized is cause you cant write for shit, how about you go find something better to do in life

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  8. Omg, as im looking over it i can see all you did was copy and paste, wowwwww thats a real bitch move

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