Sunday, 10 January 2010

The Billion Dollar Girl  What do you think when someone says, “I go to the gym”? You think, “Wow”, don’t you? You think, “Wow, isn’t she sporty? I wish I were as sporty as her. She must be really fit. I wish I were as bothered about my fitness as her. She must be a cheerleader”. What if someone said, “I met him in the gym”? That’s just like a double-whammy, right? You think, “Whoa. She goes to the gym. He goes to the gym. They’re both fit. They both enjoy lifting heavy things, and running while not really moving at all. They’re totally perfect for each other.” Right? Because I just wanted to start this story with, “I met him in the gym”. I could’ve also started it with “I go to the gym”. But I don’t want you to get the wrong impression. I hate exercise. I hate running, walking, swimming, cycling, dancing, jumping, throwing, catching and climbing. I could go on, but this is not a book about how I hate sport. This book is about him. The love of my life. *** I met him in a gym. I wasn’t there for fun. God knows that. God respects that. Yet, he makes me go there practically every day. I worked in the gym. “Why don’t you scrub harder?” my Boss said, over the inter-com. Well, you fat, dumb, lazy bastard, I thought, as I rubbed a sponge over the metal joints in the treadmill. Why don’t you come down here from your little office, so I can scrub your face off? Or better yet, why don’t you come down here so I can hack your head off? Okay, I knew I was complaining, but to be honest, this was the best job I could ever find. Fifteen bucks an hour. Twenty hours a week. But it still barely covered my school fees. I went to the Charlotte Private School for Girls, and every week it cost my family nearly nine hundred dollars. I did what I could, but at the end of the day, I was a minor, and the best job I could find was on campus. In the school gym, mainly standing behind the desk, for three-hundred bucks a week. (But sometimes I cleaned when the cleaner didn’t turn up. Like tonight. Whatever, I got paid double for over-time.) Okay, maybe that was better than almost any other job, but still. It was pretty humiliating. You know when you were younger, and you dreamed of being Cinderella, and you were waiting for the day your prince came, to whisk you away from your boring life, so you could finally become the princess you’d always deserved to be? When you came to a certain age, you realized that was utter bull. But the way I found that out hurt. A lot. I still remember my first day in this damn school. I was so excited. Finally, I could meet the real princesses. The beautiful, smart, rich girls who’d always had it all. Yeah, right. I was such a naïve little prick. But now I was a cynical big prick that got bullied. “Work!” I started. I’d just stopped working, and started reminiscing. Damn it. I tied my long, wavy ebony hair up – long, because I don’t have enough money to get a decent haircut. I pulled a strawberry lollipop out of my pocket, and shoved it into my mouth. A lollipop to me is like a coffee to a regular guy. I’m totally addicted. And then I started working again, the essay I had due tomorrow hanging over my mind like a big black cloud. My eyes slid closed every so often, but I tried to shake the sleep out of my head, and get this job done. About half-an-hour later, my boss came down the stairs, and left, tossing me the keys to the gym, and as always, telling me to clean up properly or he’ll fire me tomorrow. What a nice guy. He switched the lights off to “save electricity”, so I had to work by moonlight. Bastard. There was a thud against the left window. I debated whether or not to bother to go to the window and tell them we’re closed, or to just carry on cleaning. I checked my watch, a watch I got on my twelfth birthday. Eleven PM. They should know it wasn’t open. I just carried on scrubbing the floors, trying to get the mud out. Smash. I froze. What was that? It sounded like…smashing glass. Slowly, I looked up. There was a brick next to the now broken window, surrounded by broken shards of glass. A sudden rush of wind came through the broken window, raising goose-bumps on my skin. My heart thudded so hard against my ribcage my chest hurt. Who did that? The Billion Dollar Girl I stood up, cautiously, all my senses in hyper-mode. Oh my God. Someone’s broken in. They were going to kill me. They were going to – A black shadow came through the window, kind of circular, but bumpy. It took me awhile to realize it was someone coming in. I slid behind a treadmill, as slowly as I could. My foot brushed against a bucket, and it toppled over. The sound echoed through the gym, resounding beautifully, in a way I could have appreciated, if I were not in a life-or-death situation. Crap. The shadow in the window froze as well. The guy shifted into the moonlight, and I saw that he had pale blue eyes the color of the ocean, and my heart started thumping again. My hand went to my chest. What was wrong with me? “Don’t worry,” a deep, husky voice whispered. My head snapped up, and for a second I thought he was talking to me. “No one’s here. That was just the wind.” Who was he talking to? The guy slid in, slowly so the shards of broken glass wouldn’t cut him, one limb at a time. My heart hammered against my chest when I saw the baseball bat in his hand, and as he came through the window, the bat was illuminated just for a second. I let out an audible gasp. The bat had been nailed with dozens and dozens of nails, sharp little twists of metal that glinted subtly in the moonlight. He was here to do some serious damage. When he was through, I saw his teeth reflect the moonlight for a split-second – he’d just smirked. His silhouette looked well-built. I probably couldn’t take him. He walked over to the door, his footsteps echoing around the empty building, and opened the door. Three others walked in. Whoa. If I thought he was well-built…well, the other three guys were mountainous. Literally. Like the Hulk. But bigger. And they were all carrying bats. Oh my God…Oh my GOD! “Well,” the guy with the pale blue eyes, smirking again, “shall we get the fun started?” He swung his bat at the treadmill next to him, smashing the plastic. The rest of them laughed, and joined in. I closed my eyes, and slapped my hands over my ears, trying to block out the noise. Stop it. Stop it! They can’t do this. I was going to get blamed for it. I was going to get fired. I couldn’t… Then the sounds stopped. A couple breathless moments later, I opened my eyes. Everything was pitch-black. The moon had gone. No. I was wrong. Someone was standing directly in front of me, blocking my light. I opened my mouth to scream. And he clamped his hand over my lips. “Shh, Cleaner girl,” he whispered, smirking again. My heart thudded fast, and I tried to push him away, but he was much too strong. His arms pinned me against the wall. I shiver ran up my spine. Under the paint, the wall was brick and cold. His eyes twinkled at me. Pale blue. “Do you know who I am?” I shook my head. He smiled. “Good. Now, when we go, you will not tell anyone about –” I bit down on his hand, hard. I tasted the copper-y taste on my mouth before he drew his hand away. “Fuck!” “Ash? Are you okay?” Suddenly, everything was illuminated. It took me a while for my eyes to adjust. How did they switch the light on? You needed the manager’s pass to do that. I looked up, at the guy in front of me, sucking on the bite mark of his hand. He was about six foot, with wavy blond hair, a straight nose, red lips, and about eighteen. His face was perfect – completely too perfect to be human. He looked kind of like a God. And he was glaring at me. “You just bit me,” he said, his tone layered with anger. My pulse raced with fear. He was dangerous. He still had his baseball bat in his other hand. But I didn’t look afraid. In fact, I made myself look as scary as possible. Or so I tried. I had to pretend to be confident.  “Who are you?” I asked, trying to distract him as I rolled my mop an inch closer to me. At least that meant I had a weapon. “Why are you here? Are you…thugs?” He laughed. “Yeah, right." “How did you switch on the lights?” I asked, looking up at the taller men. I was trying to distract them. “No one’s meant to be able to do that apart from the manager.” One of them tossed me a key. It was a Universal one that could open up any part of the school…I’ve only seen teachers with these, and they had to rent them out. How the hell did these guys get this key? The Billion Dollar Girl I looked up at them. They all looked dangerous – very dangerous. You know the type. About thirty, with quadruple piercings and multiple neck tattoos. I weighed them up. I’d taken a couple Judo classes, and knew the basics – but these guys looked like professionals. I could never take them. They were looking me, like they were about to annihilate me. I shivered, not from the cold this time, but from fear. The eighteen-year-old guy next me stood up, grinning a little. Was he an idiot? Or was he really going to kill me? “Come on, cleaner girl. Do you want to leave?” Leave?! As in, leave from this Earth?! My heart thudded, and I was terrified again. He was going to kill me, he was really going to kill me. The nails glinted on his bat, and I bit my lip. It was now or never. I shoved the hard end of the mop into his chest. He went ‘oof’, and took a couple steps back. I jumped up, and ran, ran towards my freedom. Come on, I had to go faster. Why didn’t I wear the new shoes I got for my birthday, instead of them worn-down, pumps with ruined soles? Why couldn’t I bear to wear my new shoes? Why the hell was I so frugal?! I was vaguely aware that a couple of the professionals were following me. I pushed my legs to their limit, and I closed my eyes and I sprinted blindly towards the door. Glancing back, I saw that the eighteen-year-old guy was running after me, incredibly fast. Oh God, why did I hate sports? Why did I spend so much time studying? What was the point of knowing the Theory of Relativity if I couldn’t run away from a guy that was about to kill me? I promise, if I survive this, I will buy one of those Stairmaster things, and train to run. He was catching up to me, fast. Come on, one more second, and I’m out. One more second. I turned, about to sprint out of the corridor, when I tripped. The smashed window was right behind me, and I knew that I was falling back, onto the broken glass. It was going to cut right through my spinal cord, and kill me instantly. In that split-second, my life flashed before my eyes. So many regrets…so many things I didn’t try…so much of my life wasted… And I closed my eyes, waiting for the impact and certain death. A moment later, I opened my eyes again. I wasn’t dead. How? He…the boy was next to me, his hand under the place my neck would’ve been sliced. I gently stood up, looking at him. His pale blue eyes inspected his hand. The gash was right over the bite mark. The one I’d left. I bit my lip, suddenly feeling guilty. “Are you…okay?” I asked. “Fine,” he replied, his voice taut. “It’s just a surface wound.” He looked up at me, and stared at me for a second. Suddenly, his hands were cupping my face, and he was kissing me. He aggressively crushed his lips against mine. At first, I tensed up with shock, but then his tongue gently traced my lips, forcing my body to relax in the most unfair way. The electricity started with a gentle tingling from my lips, but then I was on fire, burning, electrocuted – but at the same time, it was passionate and beautiful. There was everything I’d watched in movies, everything I’d read in books, everything my friends had told me – the fireworks, the butterflies in your stomach, the violin music in the background. Everything. The perfect fairytale kiss. But only lasted for about five seconds. He pulled away. “Cleaner girl,” he whispered. “Meet me in Masa, tomorrow?” I slapped him. “You…dick!” I screamed, running out of the Gym, tears streaming from my eyes. I was sobbing uncontrollably all the way to my dorm room. I can’t believe a bastard like him stole my first kiss. *** ῼ Ash Castillo ῼ I touched my lips, as I slid into the black limo that had pulled by to collect me. “Master Castillo? What happened?” I wrapped my hand into the piece of ripped shirt, and watched as blood stained the material. “Nothing,” I replied to my driver. He started driving, and I watched the school disappear into the distance. Her amber eyes…they were so deep. And she was kind of funny. Right, I’ve decided. The Billion Dollar Girl “Myles, can you call my father for me? I’ve found my wife.”   *** One week earlier ***   ῼ Ash Castillo ῼ “I’m not getting married!” I yelled. The old man didn’t reply, but just stared out of the window of the New York skyscraper, at the people, buildings, and city that he owned. “Hello? Are you even listening to me?” “Do you know why I’m making you do this?” he asked, turning around. His face was as lined and as wrinkled as ever. He looked at me, with his pale blue eyes – eyes I’d inherited. “No! I’m nineteen, for God’s sakes, you should let me live a little first!” “You have to settle down, Ash,” he said, sitting on his chair. Suddenly, a mahogany desk stood between us, the way it had for most of my child life. “You’ve been living wild – too wild. Almost every morning, you’re mentioned on the front cover of some newspaper. You’re giving my company a bad reputation.” “Do I care?!” I yelled. “It’s not my bloody company!” “But it will be, Ash. Remember that.” “Never! I will never own that thing! It’s the thing that drained all the life out of you, the thing that made Mother leave! I will never own that company!” My Father slammed his glass of whisky down onto his desk, the liquid inside jumping. I jumped a little as well. “You will get married,” he said, his tone final. “And that is that. I have prepared a fiancé for you already. She suits our background. You will meet with her next week. I have booked you a table in Masa already.” “I’m not marrying a stupid Beverly Hills drama queen!” He smiled at me, an empty smile. “Why don’t you pick a girl, then? That way, you can’t complain, right?”   *** Now ***   ῼ Ash Castillo ῼ Yep, I’ve picked the perfect girl, I thought, squeezing my fist hard. I winced, and relaxed my hand. Not smart to be squeezing the hand that I’d injured twice tonight. The look on my Father’s face, when he meets that Cleaner girl…priceless. Of course, I’ll have to really marry her, to get the full effect. But it’ll be worth it. Maybe then, after we divorce, I’ll never have to get married again. *** The Billion Dollar Girl Ͼ Ella White  Ͽ I tapped my pencil on my notebook, staring into the distance. My chest constricted at the thought of going back to work tonight. He was probably going to fire me, right? I was doomed. He wasn’t going to believe me. He would think I made up some story to cover for the fact that I’d forgotten to lock up (which I had. I was so desperate to get out of there, I didn’t realize I hadn’t locked the door), and so some drunk seniors or something came in, and trashed the place. I bit at my cracked lip, staring out window, at the school garden. Nothing moved. Everything was completely still and silent. The green, so rare in New York, was plentiful here. The last haven I had left. Glancing to my classmates, I knew they wouldn’t agree. They were the kind of girls who wore shoes so high, they would sink about a foot into the grass outside, and their real height would be revealed. Sometimes, when I’m in a crowd of them, I feel like a total dwarf. The teacher gestured at the graph, and I forced myself to concentrate. Come on, I told myself, for about the hundredth time this academic year. You paid so much for this education. You have to value it, and take this chance. I pulled myself into the real world. Habitually, I rubbed at my nose, over the splattering of fading freckles. I’d gotten those when I worked at that outside market by the beach last summer. The teacher – Mr Vann – was explaining something about economic growth. I took notes, with the same nonplussed expression I always had. To tell you the truth, I liked it. I liked school, I liked taking the notes, and I liked the classes. But if I ever voiced that…well, the girls here would destroy me. I glanced up at the window, and I froze. Something had moved. I stared out of the window, hard. Something had moved. I was sure of it. In our garden – the school garden that was off limits to everyone during class. I craned my neck, trying to see further than the window would allow. There it was again! A flash of black, that was gone in a – “Miss White? Would you like to explain what you are doing?” I spun my head around, suddenly realizing the whole class was looking at me. Most of the girls looked smug, and they nudged each other. They could sense some drama approaching. Blood rose to my cheeks. “I’m sorry, sir. But it was just that, outside, a –” “I am not interested! While you are in my classroom, you will concentrate on nothing but what is being taught, understand?” “But –” “Do you understand?!” “I understanding, sir,” I muttered, looking down. My cheeks were red from everyone’s gazes. I wasn’t the type of person to do this. I was shy, reserved. I had to be, just to survive. “Good. Then we shall proceed.” He turned around, and started annotating the line. I bowed my head, and waited for everyone to look away. There was a tap on my shoulder. I turned around. “Are you okay?” Lucy said, smiling at me sweetly, tossing her blonde hair, letting it catch the light. She did an amazingly good job of looking like she cared. “He was being totally harsh!” The girls around her smirked. “I mean, all you were doing was looking out of a window!” she continued, her eyes widening innocently. “Just because you family are poor, doesn’t mean that you’re a delinquent. Oh!” she said, covering her mouth, as if she’d just realized. “I didn’t mean it like that! I only meant that your family aren’t as…well off…Sorry,” she said, completely unconvincing way. She was pretending she hadn’t said it on purpose. It was smart of her. She could say the things everyone else was thinking, yet appear nice at the same time. I forced a smile, and opened my mouth, about to say something back. “Miss White! Will you please turn around?! If I see you play up in my lesson one more time…” I turned around, as all of the girls giggled. “I’m sorry, sir,” I muttered, stabbing my piece of paper with my biro, mutinously. As soon as he turned back to the board, Lucy whispered to me, “He’s so over-reacting”. Her friends laughed. Mr Vann spun around, throwing his pen to the floor. “Right, Miss White, OUT!” “But –” “I warned you twice! OUT!” I gathered my stuff, shoving the books and paper into my bag, my face burning again. Tears threatened to swell up, but I bit at the side of my cheek, forcing them back again. The whole class was snickering, and as I glanced to the back of my class on the way out, Lucy was laughing right along with them. The Billion Dollar Girl I forced myself to walk as evenly as I could, controlling my face as I made my way down the corridor. I can’t let them see me break down…I can’t let them know they’ve won… But as soon as I was out of sight of the classroom, tears streamed, and I ran, as fast as I could in my old tattered shoes. That’s right, I was poor. I was poor. But did that make them better than me? I ran into the garden, the last safe place in the world, and collapsed at the wall. I kept out of sight of the classroom window. The last thing I needed was to give them more ammunition against me. My hands squeezed into fists, as the feelings of shame and anger washed over me, again and again, unrelentingly. It was like this, every single day. I was the loser girl. I was the one who lived in the slums. I was the freak. There was another scar on my heart. One more pain to deal with, one more cut to go alongside with the thousands of other cuts that had mottled me already. I closed my eyes. When will they ever heal? Suddenly, black enclosed me, and I couldn’t see. I opened my mouth to scream, but no sound came out. I struggled. Then I was gone. *** “Botox?” I was slowly coming to consciousness. The first thing I noticed was a gentle kneading sensation at my back. I felt someone pass me, and a breeze flow over my bare skin. Wait…bare skin? “Those lovely pink lips? No, just exfoliate them.” My brain slowly worked, connecting the works, trying to make sense of the words. What were they walking about? Bo-tox? Bo…tox? My mind tried to recall the meaning. “I was talking about her forehead.” I felt fingers at my temple, squeezing my head hard. There was a “tsk”ing sound. “So young,” the voice sighed, and the hand left my forehead, “and developing wrinkles already. Go on. Not too much, though.” I felt someone draw closer to me, and there was a gentle squirt of liquid. I was preoccupied, though. My mind was still trying to remember… Bo…tox? Bo-tox? BOTOX?! A sharp prick of a needle brushed against the skin of my forehead, and I pulled back, screaming. “Get the hell away from me!” The bright lights almost completely blinded me. When my eyes adjusted, I surveyed the surroundings. Where the hell was I? The walls, floors and ceiling, were all completely white. It had the feel of a hospital…and yet… “We’re under strict orders, Miss White. Mr. Castillo requested it.” I tried to lift my head, but someone pushed it back into a hole in the table. “What the hell do you think you’re doing?!” “Quiet, now,” a voice said, as they massaged my shoulders. “You have a lot of tension there, we’re just getting rid of it.” “Of course I have a lot of tension there!” I yelled. “I’m being touched by strangers!” “Hush, now.” “Do you thinks she needs a liposuction?” one of them said to the other, completely ignoring me. “No!” I yelled, thrashing. Someone held me down. “I don’t think so,” another one answered. “Her waist is thin enough.” “Let me out!” I screamed, but they didn’t answer. “Before I…sue!” “That is not our concern, Miss White. We were told to give you a…make-over.” What?! Make-over? There were several snipping sounds, and a couple wisps of my hair fell to the floor. They were cutting my hair? *** I caught sight of my own reflection in a window, and I stopped to gape at myself. I was completely different. My skin was translucent-looking and smooth. My lips were shiny and soft. My eyelashes were thick and long, and they framed my eyes perfectly. Every single strand of my hair was stuck to my head, making up an elegant hairdo. I looked…abnormally perfect. “Miss White?” I ripped my gaze from my reflection, and turned to follow the waiter, who was leading me to a table. I walked awkwardly into the restaurant, the high heels clacking on the wooden floor of the polished, high class restaurant. I was getting quite a lot of stares, as I stumbled my way across the floor, lead on by a waiter. I blushed hard under my make-up, and resisted the urge to run my fingers through my carefully straightened hair. The Billion Dollar Girl I was being Punk’d, right? Okay, I had no idea who this “Mr. Castillo” was, but after getting a Gucci dress, and a pair of Christian Louboutin ankle boots…well, I guess I had to sit it out and talk to him. I had to pay him back, at least. How expensive could strappy Gucci dresses be, anyway? I thought, adjusting the strap slightly. Sixty bucks? “This is your private dining room,” the Waiter said, opening the door for me. I hoisted down my dress slightly, and almost fell over. He gave me look. How condescending could he be? He was a waiter, for God’s sake. “Mr. Castillo will be around any second.” “He’s not here already?” I asked, kind of taken aback. The room, closed off with glass walls, was empty. It was a large space, completely deserted apart from a table in the middle of the room, with two wooden chairs. I managed to make my way across the room, but I grabbed the table as soon as I was in reach – I didn’t want to fall over. Again. I pulled out a chair, and plonked myself in it. I looked up, to see the Waiter pulling out the other chair for me. “Am I meant to sit there?” I asked (I had no idea what restaurant etiquette was), jumping back up again, and banging my knee on the table, making the little candle on the table shake, and the flame flicker. “OW!” “Um, no, it’s okay,” the Waiter said, pushing the chair back in. He left the room, giving me a backwards glance that clearly said “I can’t believe she got into this restaurant”. I sat and waited for “Mr. Castillo”. I picked up the chopsticks, and stabbed the napkin with them. I was getting bored, waiting. I felt kind of on show here, in this dress. It was definitely not the kind of thing I normally wore at all. I wasn’t the kind of girl bothered with her appearance. Sure, I did the basics – I brushed my hair, clipped my nails, and dabbed some cheap drug-store lip balm on when my lips got cracked. But I didn’t do pretty much anything else. I didn’t do the whole make-up thing. It just seemed…redundant to me. Maybe I was just poor. I tapped my newly-manicured fingers on the table, my eyes gazed and staring off into the distance. My eyes kept drooping. I wasn’t used wearing false eyelashes. I closed my eyes for a second, drifting off. God, I was tired. After last night, that horrible night, I couldn’t sleep for hours. My elbow, which was propping up my head, slipped, and I banged my head against the table. I was fully awake again. Rubbing my forehead, I looked up, through the glass wall. And into the pale blue eyes of the guy who’d stolen my first kiss. He was wearing a black tux, paired with an open-collar white shirt. It made him look…devastatingly handsome. “Come in, Mr. Castillo,” the Waiter said, ushering the guy into the room. He pulled out the chair, and the guy…Mr. Castillo, lowered himself into the chair. Then he sat down, and looked straight into my eyes. And smirked. *** The Billion Dollar Girl   Ͼ Ella White Ͽ “What would you like to drink?” I glared at him, and didn’t answer. “We’ll have the 1975 Dom Perignon Oenotheque,” he said to the waiter, choosing for me. His tongue rolled over the French, and I wondered if it was meant to impress me. “As for appetizers…” He tapped at the menu (evidently, he was unable to pronounce the Japanese words), showing the waiter. The waiter wrote it down, nodded, and left. I tapped my fingers on the table, waiting for “Mr. Castillo” to start talking. He had to tell me what this was about – he’d kidnapped me, dolled makeup onto my face, and almost made me have plastic surgery. He had to have a good reason for this, or God help me, I will kill him He didn’t meet my eyes, but just tapped on his little Blackberry like his life depended on it. Another way he was like those spoilt brats – obsessed with their gadgets. The waiter was back with our drinks (wow – fast!), along with our appetizers. He placed the dishes in front of us, and I breathed in the delicious smell of crispy spring rolls and wasabi. I wanted to smell some more, but at the same time, it made my nose sting. I tried not to look too impressed in front of Mr. Castillo. He glanced up, gave the waiter a quick smile, and then carried on tapping away on his Blackberry. The waiter poured out the 1975 Dom Perignon Oenotheque, which turned out to be champagne, bowed, and left. After a couple more quick taps at his Blackberry’s screen, “Mr. Castillo” stowed his phone away into his jacket pocket, and picked up his chopsticks. “Eat,” he commanded. I picked up my chopsticks, and was about to eat when I realized – hey, I don’t have to do what he says! He doesn’t own me! I chucked my chopsticks back down, and glared at him. I don’t know why I was about to do what he commanded – there was just this certain confidence to his voice. “No. I won’t eat until you tell me why I’m here, Mr. Castillo.” “Ash,” he said, with a slight wince. “Not Mr. Castillo. Call me Ash.” “Whatever,” I said, impatient, “Just tell me why the hell I’m here!” Ash didn’t answer straight away, but picked up a spring roll with his chopsticks, and brought it to his mouth. I watched him take a bite, chew, and swallow. He was taking his time. “Hey!” I yelled, kicking him under the table. A couple people in the restaurant glared at me, but I ignored them. “Tell me why I’m here!” He took a sip of champagne, and looked at me over the rim. I tried not to get sucked into his pale blue eyes. He gave out this aura of confidence and power, so it was almost impossible for me to look away. “Do you have a boyfriend?” I frowned. “Um, what?” “Oh, sorry. Girlfriend?” “No!” I yelled, flushing red. “Why would you ask something like that?” “Marry me.” I looked at him, for a couple seconds. Then I exploded into laughter. “You’re killing me,” I said, wiping a tear from my eye. His face was so serious, I decided to go along with the joke. “I knew you were dumb, but I didn’t know you were funny!” He glared at me. “I’m not joking.” “Oh, right,” I chuckled, popping a fried shrimp into my mouth (kind of like popcorn chicken, but with shrimp), and chewing. “Why would you ask a girl, you’ve only met once to marry you? You have to be kidding. I’d have to be insane marry the guy who trashed the place I worked, kidnapped me, and almost gave me Botox.” He just looked at me. “Is that your answer?” “Um, yeah!” “You don’t like me?” “Of course I don’t.” He looked into my eyes. “Then I’ll buy you.” I choked on wasabi, and suddenly my eyes were streaming. “Excuse me, what?” I spluttered. “I’ll buy you. How much do you want? Ten million?” “Are you kidding? You trashed my gym. You probably don’t even have a dime.” He smirked. “How do you think I could afford this?” he asked, waving at the restaurant around him. I frowned. “I don’t know. Credit fraud?” He laughed. “Right. Come on, give me a number.” “Are you kidding?” I asked, annoyed now. Did this guy really think he could just buy me? The Billion Dollar Girl “Fifty million? A hundred?” I glared at him,  an angry blush rising in my cheeks. What was I, a prostitute?! How dare he! He was just another one of those rich, stuck-up girls at my school who thought they could buy the Universe with money. What the hell is money, anyway? It was nothing but paper! I slapped him.  “I would never, ever, ever marry someone like you!” I spat, standing up. “I hate people like you who think that you can do anything in the world, just because you have a platinum card! You think you can do everything? Without your family, you would be nothing! Your life would be meaningless.” Every dirty thought, remark, or sentence I’d been saving up in my mind, for the past year, was poring out now. “You can’t make everyone do what you say, just by waving some green paper around!” I screamed, tears coming to my eyes. The guests in the restaurant were all staring at me now. “It’s disgusting the way you people act! You should be ashamed!” He rubbed his cheek, and looked up at me. He smirked, which annoyed me so much more. “In this world…there is nothing you can’t buy with money.” “I’ve got one for you, Mr. Castillo. Me,” I said, smiling though my tears. I grabbed my drink, and chucked it at his surprised face. It would’ve been quite cool, if I left like that – me, walking out on a spluttering guy, his face dripping in champagne. But this was me. I tripped in the stupid high heels, grabbed onto the table for support, and it came tumbling down with me, the food flying into the air. Next thing I knew, I’d collapsed onto the floor, sushi tangled in my hair, a champagne splash on my dress, my heels broken, my make-up smudged. The customers around us had all turned to stare at me, gaping like I was some kind of zoo animal. Broken plates and food surrounded me. Slick, Ella. Really slick. *** ῼ Ash Castillo ῼ “Bill, please,” I said vaguely, waving at the waiter. “Don’t worry, I’ll pay for any damages.” She’d run away, trying to keep her dignity. Some champagne trickled down my forehead, and I caught it, just before it touched my lips. I looked at the tiny drop of glistening liquid. I switched my phone on, and dialed a number. “That girl…find out her family’s address.” I hung up, and smiled at the reflection in the champagne flute. She’d just gotten a lot more interesting. ***

8 comments:

  1. I'm so sorry that your story has been plagiarised. I loved it and if I'd known it was I'd've reported and stopped reading. You're a really good writer, despite there being no paragraphs. xD Again, I'm sorry for not knowing and I hope you get more readers and followers. :)

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  2. Please look at this link and decide. Look at the person's own comments she has made. https://www.wattpad.com/user/31081997ll/activity

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  3. 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

    ReplyDelete
  4. 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

    ReplyDelete
  5. 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

    ReplyDelete