“Beloved youths of today,” the DJ screams through the sound system, “Here is your favourite song of the year! Extra Ordinary!”
I pour myself a glass of water and down the liquid as everyone starts screaming, dancing and grinding. I lean over the wood of the bar... and it’s polished enough to show my reflection. I see my frown and I’m not surprised. This job was hard work and I was counting down the last three minutes of my shift.
“Darlin’, don’t look so sour.”
Wait... okay, what? I didn’t expect to be interrupted. Everyone had already left or was on the dance floor for the last song.
I spin to look to the side of the bar, where the voice has travelled from. My narrowed eyes now open wide when I spot a man leaning on the bar, after stealing a bottle of vodka that wasn’t put back on the shelf and out of the way of thieves. Now, he rudely drinks from the bottle.
This could only be one of the guests I was told to look out for.
“Up the stairs,” I snap and point to the staircase, after a while, I lower my arm and watch him stand up with the vodka. He seems to take a moment to let my words sink in before he walks off. I don’t think he can comprehend I just snapped at him.
As he finally leaves the bar, a line of men barge through the front doors and quickly bypass me to catch up to him.
That should be the last of them.
I watch as they follow him to the staircase. They wind their way up to head to the offices above while I watch, bored. I was new here, but, I was told when they came in, to just direct them where to go.
Business deals. Drugs or something. Probably.
I watch, sipping my water as the company of suspicious men ascend the stairs and then one man remains at the bottom.
The one who yelled out and called me sour. Of course. I roll my eyes and turn my back to him when I see him start towards me again.
What a typical, well-groomed fuck boy, who should probably be doing something better than clubbing when he looked at least twenty-six years old.
Once I hear the glass bottle clink onto the wood of the bar, I turn to face him once again.
“Listen,” I start off, “You stole a drink and now you want to talk to me... that’s not going to work.”
“Rough night?” he asks, raising a brow. Just as the song comes to a quick end, a co-worker turns on the lights and my eyes blink in the sudden intensity of luminescence.
Damn, it was so bright–
My eyes clear up and I focus upon the man I’m speaking too. Now I can see him properly. He had the face of an angel... or a demon, depending on whether you preferred to imagine him to look like a bad boy or a white knight.
Regardless, it was a face of trouble for women. Some types of hotness just were. Especially if you looked too long and started to imagine... other things.
“I’m just tired,” I explain after hesitating while staring at him. The more I look, the more I feel triggered... by a memory... not sure what... but... there was something about him.
“So, you’re sour when you’re tired,” he summarises me easily while crossing his arms across the bar bench before looking me up and down. I go from assessing his blonde hair, green eyes and perfectly muscular body... to looking down at myself.
I was wearing black flats, an old black skirt and a new blue, slightly slutty tube top.
I glance up and flick my hair over my shoulders and straighten my skirt.
“Am I sour and a mess?” I ask this to myself, laughing while feeling my hair again and knowing it’s boofy and sticking up everywhere from the humidity of the club.
“You tell me,” as he murmurs I look up to him again and glance towards the stairs. His friends weren’t coming down anytime soon, so I guess I’d have to just tell him I was cleaning up now, and didn’t have time to talk.
“My shift’s over now,” I nod and smile at him professionally and I see a little spark in his eye... was he... psychopathically angry that I just started to dismiss him or... was I imagining things? “So... I can’t talk and you have to leave, it’s three am... oh, wait... your friends, I forgot,” I point to the stairs some more, “You’re all friends with the owner, right? I must be tired because I knew that but forgot and... never mind... you can stay... there... if you like... I just need to clean and get going. So, uh, nice chat.”
“I wasn’t aware our chat ended,” his next words are low and threatening and they catch my attention once more just as I’ve tried to turn away.
I open my mouth to respond and shut it... then open it again.
I mean, it was cool to be chatted up by the hottest guy I’d seen this whole night... but seriously, I wouldn’t deal with creeps, no matter how attractive they were.
“If a random guy is going to try and chat me up and force me to stay longer after my shift, every time I work, maybe I’ll have to get a different job,” I smile as I say this, hoping I play it off as a joke.
He manages to smirk and chuckle but I’m not sure if that’s real amusement... or something else.
I’m pretty sure he was laughing at me.
I try to ignore it.
“...and what’s your name?” he asks, raising a brow.
“Uh... it’s um, Jess-”
“Your real name,” he cuts me off and I’m shocked how quickly he catches on to my lie.
I give him points for that.
“Lucy,” I say it before I think twice.
“Lucy,” he rolls the name on his tongue while I lick my lips and look anywhere but at him.
Stop staring into the green eyes... argh, why were green eyes so attractive, damn it? Just, clean. Get out of here. Stop talking to him.
I try to tell myself this as I turn from him and start to put things away. As I go about my work, I clean the whole bench except the part under him. He doesn’t leave. He just stays and watches me the whole time, which makes me feel uncomfortable... but I couldn’t just tell him to leave when he was a guest.
And to be honest, he seemed to be the stubborn kind.
Eventually I turn to him, to reach for the glasses on the bench and I see my water. I reach over, my mouth dry and my eyes downcast so I don’t have to make eye-contact. I grab the glass and take a sip before pushing it aside as I reach forward to clean the rest of the bar under him. Unfortunately, as I get within arms reach of the ridiculously hot man, I hear, see and feel the vodka bottle being emptied onto the bar... and slowly raised up higher so it pours down my tube top.
“That, Lucy, is a new definition of spilling a drink on a girl,” as the guy mocks me, I slowly glare up at him but I am truly speechless. I don’t even know what to say. But he does, “My name is Zac. Where do you live?”
“Hey, you can fuck off now,” I smile sarcastically and lean down to pick up the remaining glasses. As I do so, Zac’s eyes have widened again at my cursing. He can’t quite believe his offended ears. But I couldn’t ignore a half bottle of vodka poured all over me.
For the moment I push his action to the back of my head. I needed to clean. I could cry and rage when I got home.
I mean, seriously, why were the super hot guys always the bad boys and alwaysmajor douchebags? Why? Every single time I met one, they turned out the same.
Now, I clutch the the glasses to me as I go to the sink on the back bench. I hear a stool scrape across the bar floor. I turn to see Zac stand. He mutters some angry curses to himself, before abruptly turning, stalking off and leaving the club.
I sigh in relief and a minute later, the other men descend the stairs and exit through the front as well. I clean up with the other staff who are cleaning the floors and eventually I grab my phone and purse.
I run to the toilet before I head off, and once I’m done relieving myself and staving off a wave of dizziness, I’m the last to head home.
I exit the front doors and come to a halt on the city street.
The streets were usually pretty empty this time of night.
Not full. Like it was now.
I have taken a step outside the door and as it swings shut and locks... in the corners of my eyes I see the men from before hanging around.
One group to the left, one to the right.
They seem preoccupied with something.
In front of me, I see a familiar face leaning back on a black limousine.
“What’s...?” I start to ask but I hear a girl half scream and when I glance to the side, I see the men are busy surrounding a group of innocent boys and girls, hustling them to busses on the side of the road, “What’s going on?” I ask, confused.
“I’m not meant to take the staff,” Zac explains, shrugging, “But you pissed me off.”
“Ah... this is a joke, right?” I ask, raising a brow, “Like a... an initiation for new staff members, isn’t it? You’re all trying to scare me. Are you a manager of the club or...?”
“No,” Zac shakes his head and opens the door to the limousine, standing back and holding out a hand for me to take, “My name is Zac. That’s all you need to know.”
“Zac the tooth fairy? Zac the prankster?” I try to make a joke of it by waving my hands about nervously, “I’m not interested in you, Zac the tooth fairy. Now, I need to go home.”
“How much of that water did you drink, darl?” he asks, raising a brow.
Huh. All of it. It’s thirsty work bartending.
“What water...? Oh, that water...” I drop my hands and smile sarcastically as I try not to stare at his face too long again.
Those green eyes were giving me a headache. Like, an actual headache.
What the heck was wrong with me?
I was quickly going from feeling a little yuck to really yuck.
“Get in the limo,” he asks me again while smirking, “Before you face plant into the ground and ruin that stunning face.”
“Where does the tooth fairy want to take me?” I ask, grinning and winking, while still sounding sarcastic, “Because I have an appointment with the dentist... bye!” I turn to dramatically leave, but my head almost spins off my shoulders.
I try to steady myself but I stumble step by step, closer to Zac.
“That’s convenient,” Zac holds one of my arms to steady me as I fall into the leather seats while giggling.
“The tooth fairy’s chariot!” I sit up and put on my seat belt, still smiling... until I feel dizzy again. I close my eyes, “Wooooah... stop flying so fast through the air...” I jerk my eyes open when I hear a door slam shut and feel a warm body slide up to sit next to me.
I turn to see Zac but he is spinning in my vision.
“I hate talkers,” he growls this as I close my eyes, confused... and then I feel a cloth against my mouth, nice and tight between my teeth as I bite down on it, “Welcome to the Black Market, darlin’.”
I turn to him now, my hand on his thigh and my eyes wide as I look into his face.
Limo. Stranger. Black Market. Not good.
I continue to stare at him intensely, hoping he tells me more.
“Oh, don’t worry, darl...” he shakes his head at my anxiety, “You’re not going up for sale. You’re mine,” I narrow my eyes, confused. What? He sees the question in my gaze and he repeats, “Mine. Lucy... you’re now nothing. But mine. Do you understand?” I shake my head and he smirks, “It won’t take long with you, darl, not long at all.”
I don’t know what he means.
I almost pass out, my face falling straight into his lap and into his groin.
I think I hear him laugh and I don’t know what’s going on anymore but I like the warmth of his lap... so I turn my cheek into his thighs and cuddle up to his leg.
I close my eyes, nodding off with the motion of the limo.
As I fall asleep, my memories also fade.