“Mr Inferno said he will be coming over tonight and so, you should be wearing this, by then.” Felix, Cainan’s driver said as he handed over the shopping bag to Jasmin who silently collected it from his hand, looking as confused as ever.
Jasmin glanced through it and saw a silk red gown and three-inch silver heel. “Where am I going to?” she asked with her brow rising as she stared at the tall, dark man in his mid-forties standing at her door.
“He said to not tell you if I still hope to keep my job. I am sorry, ma’am,” he replied.
“This time I’ll let you off but if you come next time with a package from Cainan with that speech, I’ll not accept it.”
“That’s understood, Ms Whyte.” Felix nodded and took his leave.
Jasmin closed the door and took the package into the bedroom to further reveal it and as she did, the long, red, elegant gown is revealed and it took a lot of effort for Jasmin to not let her mouth drop in the process of beholding it.
Her phone began to ring that very moment and seeing Cainan’s name as the caller ID didn’t surprise her, he had a very strange way of knowing exactly when to call these days.
She picked the call and waited for him to speak, “I’m guessing you have gotten my package from Felix.”
“I have,” she said, dropping it down on the bed, turning to the window and looking through but not seeing his car anywhere near. “I have no idea what to do with it though,” she mumbled because Cainan gave her no heads up before dropping the package on her.
“Figuring out what to do with it shouldn’t be difficult especially when gowns are made to be worn.” there was humour in his voice.
Her cheeks grew red and she rolled her eyes, “You know what I meant, so screw you.”
“Wear that gown tonight and we just might,” he instantly responded as if he had anticipated those words.
Her cheeks grew hotter and she ran out of her usual comebacks.
“I’ll pick you up at exactly seven-thirty, no later than that.” with that said he ended the call.
George got his job back last week as well as an apology letter from his employer who stated how he had wrongfully terminated his job. Jasmin didn’t miss the happiness that was on Anita’s face when she disclosed the news to her. George had been miserable since he lost his job and getting it back felt like an answer to his prayers. He didn’t get his old position as the event planner back, he was given a new one that was higher than the last. With his old position gone, he would no longer be able to find extra jobs for her, but Anita didn’t mind, the job was more important and Jasmin couldn’t agree more.
At seven-twenty nine, she was already dressed in the red gown and the red platform heels. The gown was beautiful, it wasn’t too clingy and for that alone, Jasmin was grateful. It was also decent, covering all the needed parts of her body and as much as body positivity was concerned, she didn’t want to be on that train today.
Her hair was in a neat bun and a few curls she allowed to fall to her face, her lips she added red lipstick to and watched as it glowed in the mirror and although she didn’t know where she was heading to, she knew it was an important outing considering the fact that he got her this dress that must have cost a lot.
The doorbell went off and she didn’t have to think twice about it. She picked her silver purse in front of the dressing table and made her way out of the bedroom and opened the door. At her door stood Cainan in a black suit and red tie, matching the exact fabrics of her gown. His hair was neatly parted in the middle and brushed to the side, giving him a boyish and mature look at the same time. His face was smooth and she could smell the still lingering smell of the aftershave he used.
She wanted to taste him.
His eyes were wide and happy causing her to raise a brow, wondering if he had heard her. “What?”
“Nothing, you look gorgeous that’s all.” he complimented, stepping forward and kissing her cheek.
Her face flushed.
“You look like yourself.” she mumbled to herself, but when his eyes flickered she knew he heard her, “You look good.” she flashed him a crossed smile.
“Well, thank you. Even though that was not genuine, I can work with that.” he offered her his arm and she wrapped her hands around it.
“I’m your contracted girlfriend, it’s kinda ironic that you will look forward to anything real. I will do my part because of the money I will get paid at the end of it all, but nothing more.”
She felt him stiffen and she knew her words had gotten to him even though they shouldn’t.
He took her hand and entwined their fingers, “Well, I’m not paying you to play a role when you’re alone with me, you can always be yourself, but when the world’s eyes are on you, you play your role. It’s very simple.”
Not really, but she didn’t dare say that, so instead her reply was “Got it. Where are we going tonight?”
A smirk appeared on his face at her question, “I knew you weren’t going to keep your curiosity to yourself and just trust me, Ms Whyte.”
“Once I’m surrounded with people, I will, but I need to know. I can’t help that I was born with an acute curiosity,” she said with a small pout.
“It’s eight years since Inferno group of company went public,” he replied and it wasn’t as bad as she had thought.
“Okay,” she trailed off, hoping he’d continue.
“It’s one of the biggest parties of the year and everyone invited gets to come along with a date and that’s why I’m bringing you. I also chose today as our first official outing as couples after two months of dating and I will be formally introducing you as my girlfriend.” for someone who was going to be making a huge announcement today, he looked reserved and composed.
Could she be surprised? He was already used to doing such after eight years.
Going public was a huge step, but she knew it was bound to come and two months was enough time to make official what they had. She saw the look on his face and he seemed a bit excited and she wanted to feel that way with him as well.
She fidgeted with her fingers, not wanting her nervousness to show but being unable to help it. “Tonight is going to be a huge step for me, Mr Inferno, you should have given me a heads up. I would have prepared and better equip myself for what’s to come.”
“You do better when you’re less prepared anyways, just being yourself.” He winked at her.
She digested that for a moment and wondered if he had mistakenly said those words, but he looked nothing like someone who had said something wrong.
She felt a bit of ease and squared her shoulders, “For a while, I wondered if you were dressing me up for the slaughter or worse to sell me out.”
He was visible amused even though his eyes displayed a bit of disbelief. “That could also be arranged and that depends on how the night goes.”
She shrugged, “Yeah, thank God I’m wearing a free gown, I’ll easily make a run for it.”
He laughed harder and he turned to look at her, his eyes not denying his amusement of her words, “I wouldn’t expect anything else.”
They arrive at the company building where she had visited over a week ago and she scrambled to open up the door when she felt Cainan’s hand on her upper thigh and it stilled her.
“Relax, sweetheart, the driver always gets the door.”
Her cheeks heated up partly at his words and partly at the feel of his hand on her thigh. If he felt the response her body gave, he didn’t show and soon he withdrew his hand and she turned away from him.
The door opened and she wasted no time before stepping out only to be swapped by the men and women flashing their lights and cameras in her face, taking pictures. She drew an agitated breath, taken back with what was happening but decided to put on her brave face and smile instead, all the while cussing Cainan in her heart. Cainan was beside her in seconds and he held out a hand to the annoying cameramen and entwined their hands in each other’s before and together they made their way into the building which had fewer camera surprises.
They were making an official outing as a couple, confirming the rumours which had been going on around them for a few weeks now and Cainan had informed her it was also his company’s eighth anniversary and so though she didn’t anticipate this, she should have. She dragged in a deep breath as they both stepped into the event hall as yet another chapter awaited her and she clung to Cainan arm as though her very life depended on it. She was never good with crowd but she didn’t tell him. He was right if he had informed her about the event yesterday or a week earlier, it would have wrecked her from the inside out but now she just had to worry about the next couple of hours to come.
“Take a deep breath, it will be over before you know it.” he let go of her hand and placed his hand on the small of her back and she almost leaned in, wanting more from his touch.
She held herself together and just nodded.
She needed to keep this body of hers under control and he needed to keep his hands to himself if they hoped to get through the night in one piece.