Benedict ordered an espresso and said, “You haven’t changed a bit, Xavier. Still the swinger surrounded by women, I see.”
Xavier chuckled and nodded. “Haha! Spare me the pleasantries, buddy!”
“So, what do you need from me?” Benedict asked.
“Oh? What, a guy can’t just catch up with his friend?” Benedict sure is a sharp one! Xavier thought to himself.
“I know you, Xavier. Now, how about you get on with it?”
Xavier figured there was no point in hiding his intentions anymore, but he didn’t want to confront Benedict directly either as he might not admit to doing it.
“Do you know about what happened to my scarf factory a while back?” he asked.
Benedict nodded and waved as he said, “Yeah, I heard it was shut down all of a sudden. You should’ve put more effort into that factory of yours, you know? It was a real waste of potential!”
“I know, right? What a shame!” Xavier cursed at Finnick in his head. My scarves were selling great! If it hadn’t been for Finnick, I’d still be in business right now! It pisses me off just thinking about it!
“Say, what happened to that scarf I gave you two years ago? You didn’t lose it, did you?” Xavier asked.
Benedict wasn’t sure what Xavier was playing at, but he could tell that he was hiding something.
“I don’t even remember what I had for breakfast, and you expect me to remember what happened two years ago?”
Xavier sighed. He knew he had no choice but to ask him directly instead.
“You’ve always been the smarter one, Benedict. Fine, I’ll cut straight to the chase with you. I gave you a scarf two years ago, didn’t I?”
Benedict admitted to having received a few scarves from him.
Xavier pressed on, “Do you remember being in Century Hotel, then? Did you sleep with a drugged woman there and lose your scarf?”
Benedict realized how serious it was and quickly said, “Hold up, what is this all about? Could you at least explain to me what happened? What drug? What woman?”
Xavier didn’t want to tell him everything about Vivian so as to not embarrass Finnick.
“Just answer the question. Have you been to Century Hotel two years ago?”
Benedict recalled the important events that took place two years ago and replied, “Yes, I have.”
Xavier went wide-eyed when he heard that. “Did you see a woman that was drugged?”
“No. I did see plenty of women that were charmed by me, though.” Benedict replied.
“And you didn’t sleep with any of them?”
Benedict gave Xavier a strange look upon hearing that. What the hell is wrong with him today?
“Come on, you know me. I may like women, but I don’t sleep around like you do.”
Xavier agreed with what he said. Benedict is indeed well-known for keeping his distance with women. Being the sophisticated scholar that he is, he always turned down invitations to parties and never had any scandals whatsoever. Heck, even Finnick is impressed by that!
Benedict found Xavier’s questions boring and didn’t understand why he was asking about such things.
He had other interests in mind, like Finnick for example.
“What has Finnick been up to lately?” he asked.
Xavier decided it was a good time to change the topic too as he didn’t want Benedict to ask him about the incident.
“Oh, that guy? He’s enjoying life with his beautiful wife so much that he’s forgotten about his friends! That guy has become a family man now!”
Benedict frowned in concern. “Finnick is married?”
Xavier nodded. “Yeah, his grandfather forced him into it.”