False Pretense Episode 17

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Ise watched Kite, trying to read her. She obviously didn’t have a boyfriend at the moment but why didn’t she just answer, it was a simple question, yes or no! Couldn’t she tell that he liked her? Or how was a guy supposed to show his intentions to a girl these days? He shook his head.

“What? Why are you shaking your head?” She asked him.

“ Girls and their fronting things.” He shrugged.

“What? I’m not fronting.” She denied immediately “I just don’t see it as your business.”

“So you’re telling me that you’ve not noticed that I like you? Or do you want me to sing it first before you’ll understand?” He saw her pause as what he’d just said sunk in. She’d really had no inkling, he thought.

“You like me how?” She asked frowning. This wasn’t going how he would’ve liked. The expression on her face wasn’t raising his hopes. She was looking at him like she suspected him of being up to something.

“How else do you figure?” He asked her back “I like you how a man likes a woman, why’re you looking at me like I have dubious intentions?” She seemed at a loss for words, she opened her mouth as if to say something but closed it back. “ You’re acting like I just said something strange? Is it so unbelievable?” He asked her and then added “I’m very attracted to you and if you wouldn’t mind I’d like to have a relationship with you.” He said. Finally finding her tongue, she said

“I…I just came out of a relationship six months back,” She began, stammering a bit “ I’ve not really gotten over it yet so…ummm..I don’t think I’m ready to start something else yet.” She said, not able to look at him. Their meals had been long forgotten by now as they hadn’t touched it for a while.

Where was the confident woman who’d approached him not so long ago back at essenza? The one who’d been defiant and bold, stealing his things and talking back at him? The girl he saw here was shy and not at all in her element, what in the world was the problem? Could it be her mother’s illness getting to her? He sighed. He wasn’t happy she’d rejected his advances but what could he do?

He knew very well there was no point pushing the issue. If she didn’t want, then that was it. He was going to have to accept it and move on, but he really would have loved to know her better, there was something about her that got to him and he really would have loved to explore those feelings. He smiled slightly trying to reassure her

“ Maybe I chose the wrong time to tell you this but I respect your decision.” He told her, his hand going over hers on the table. He saw her eyes take it in before she looked at him, he withdrew his hand. Not many women would reject his advances like she’d done which should say something about her personality. One of the reasons he was wary of the opposite sex was because he wasn’t sure if they wanted him for him or his money.

“So….your break up was ugly I take it.” He said She snorted

“If you could call it that.”

“What?” He asked to be sure he’d heard right.

“If you could call it a break up.” She repeated.

“Do you care to go into details?” He asked. There was a story here, he wished she would share so he’d know why she wasn’t ready to go into a relationship yet, might even help him in the long run. She looked up at him

“No, but I’ll say this, men can be such douches. As in how can one throw away a relationship of seven years and just disappear so strangely? Without an explanation? How does that even happen? I’ll never understand men.” She said more to herself than him. Ise raised an eyebrow, there was definitely a story there, she must have been hurt really badly if her boyfriend had just up and left her like that. He wasn’t sure what to say next but he didn’t have to.

He saw Sal approaching with Kenny. This meant something was up. He sat up and as if Kite sensed something was up followed his gaze.

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“What’s up?” Ise asked when they got closer.

“ Not good.” Were Kenny’s first words

“TANOIL are backing off the merger.”

“What? Why?” Ise spat. Tanoil was an Israeli company they were partnering and working with in order to delve into oil sector.

“ Yoav Efrait is reneging on signing the agreement, he’s not giving any tangible excuse but I guess AXEL has something to do with it. They might have given them a better offer, we’re going to have to be in Tel Aviv by tomorrow before they back out completely. Here are the complaints you need to go through.” He handed a folder over to Ise, who got up as he received it. Ise’s mind began working immediately, these AXEL guys just wouldn’t quit, they were WOLCORPS biggest competition. He and Kenny had to leave immediately. He turned to Sal who was with his phones

“Have Princess arrange for the Jet and cancel all my appointments till I return, I’m not sure how long we’ll need to be away.” Sal turned immediately and began making the necessary calls. Turning to Kenny he said “we don’t have time, we have to leave in the next two hours, rendezvous at the airport? You’ve notified your P.A, haven’t you?” Kenny nodded.

He turned to Kite, he’d not forgotten her, how could he? It was too bad they were cutting short their conversation.

“I’m sorry Kitty, Duty calls. Have you met Kenny…..” He said then remembered they had.

“Oh…Sorry.” He thought he saw a look pass between them as they both murmured some sort of greeting, if he wasn’t saddled with the present issue he would have taken the time to analyse what that had been about, but it was obvious the two didn’t really care for each other. Hmmm, a memory of their cosy dancing flashed through his mind, now they acted like they couldn’t stand the sight of the other, he wondered briefly what had happened but didn’t dwell on it. There would be time for that after this TANOIL business was resolved.

“Sal will have you dropped off, after he drops me off at the airport.” He said. He was going directly to the plane since he had all he needed on board. A change of clothes, travel documents and all.

The Pilot and flight attendants were outsourced and their company would have been notified by Princess, he was sure they would be at the private jet even before he got there. He would just have to wait for Kenny to rendezvous with him and then they’d be off.

“Ummm..no really, you’ve done enough already…I can find my way.” Kite said but he was having none of that. He couldn’t just leave her to find her own way, it was a pity they couldn’t finish lunch but he wasn’t going to leave her without a ride.

“No way, no argument about this, I’ll feel bad if I don’t. come on, lets go.” He beckoned while Kenny watched them with interest. It was a pity, Ise wished he could have spent more time with her. Anyway when he got back, they would continue where they’d left off. He’d decided he wasn’t giving up on that relationship yet. Something told him she was meant to be his.

She got up and followed, walking by his side as they left the restaurant, while Kenny and Sal walked ahead. He didn’t bother about the bills because he had a tab with the restaurant and they would send whatever bill he’d incurred over to his office for settlement so he didn’t have to bother with the payment.

“I’m sorry this had to come up.” He began saying to her “The perks of my job,” he said sarcastically.

“it’s okay.” She smiled “I still enjoyed lunch.”

“So you’ll see the HR tomorrow, I’ll leave a message, they’ll let you know what your job will be, okay? And every other thing, Job specification, pay and other benefit’s.” She smiled and he felt his insides go all churny again, and then he changed his mind, he had to have this girl, bad break up or no, he was pursuing her until she agreed to date him.

“Thanks so much, you really don’t know how……” Her voice trailed as her gaze landed on someone, she stopped in her tracks. They’d been walking through the outer hallway leading to the exit of the building. He followed her gaze and it stopped on a guy. Ise guessed him to be in his late twenties, light complexioned, about the same height as he was, but was a bit heavier.

“Izu.” He heard her breathe.

Kenny and Sal who’d been in front of them had continued on their way without noticing they’d stopped. The guy, also shocked at seeing her and was making his way over. Ise looked at her

“You know him?”

“That’s my boyfriend……. my runaway boyfriend.” She said, her voice barely a whisper.

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