“I prepared a lot of extra food,” I lowered my head and said with a grin. “Greg, why don’t you join me for dinner?”
“Okay.” Ashton accepted as soon as I had finished extending my invitation.
He spoke extremely calmly but quickly as though he was very eager.
Ashton’s buffet lunches probably cost him tens of millions. I wouldn’t be surprised if his dinners were in the millions as well. Why would a wealthy man like him want to share the dinner of an ordinary citizen like me?
“Okay!” Gregory cheered as he pulled me by the hand into my own house, leaving me no time to spare any further thought to the matter.
I was a little worried that Marcus would not like the way I led the party in while he was still having his dinner. To my surprise, he did not express any dissatisfaction. Perhaps it was due to the virtues of hospitality that he embodied. “I’ll get two more sets of cutlery,” he said courteously.
Gregory was well-mannered too; he hurried after Marcus to help.
Marcus bent down and patted him on the shoulder. “Young man, just have a seat and make yourself at home,” he said as he turned and walked into the kitchen.
Ashton suddenly walked over to Gregory’s side. “Did you forget what we talked about yesterday?”
“What did he talk about?” Gregory replied, nonplussed. Perhaps they talked about a lot of things and he didn’t immediately realize which one his father was referring to.
“You mustn’t disturb Weird Ms. Stovall,” Ashton said coldly.
“Yes, I remember,” Gregory said with an obedient nod.
“It’s the same with Weird Mr. White. In the future, you have to read the situation better. Understand?”
Marcus emerged as Ashton concluded his speech. It was so awkward for me that I drew deep breaths to calm myself.
Not only did this temper have a temper that was difficult to grasp, but it also seemed that he didn’t know how to accommodate others. How could someone eat and drink for free in another’s house and teach their kids to ignore the owner of the house?
I held my head and cringed on behalf of Gregory. With a father like this, the child would have plenty of hardships to endure in the future.
It was a good thing that Marcus had plenty of patience. He stared Ashton down for a few seconds before looking away and taking his seat. This episode was a small incident to him.
“Have a seat wherever you like, make yourselves at home,” I said to our guests as I resumed my own seat.
Marcus dropped some potatoes onto my plate. “Have some more. If I get off work late again, don’t wait up for me.”
“It’s no trouble. Dinner is no fun to have alone,” I said with a smile. I recalled that Gregory had a sweet tooth, so I gave him a piece of caramelized pork.
Gregory held his cutlery and eyed the pork without moving. He looked toward his father as though awaiting his approval.
Ashton’s expression was inscrutable. “It’s Ms. Stovall’s treat, eat up. There are no rules to follow today.”
Gregory did not spare his father. “But Daddy, you always look angry…”
He helped himself to the pork, chewing slowly with satisfaction.
Without noticing it, he had gotten the sauce all over his lips.
Ashton caught sight of it. Instinctively, he reached for his handkerchief from his jacket pocket and wiped his son’s lips with a practiced hand.
Gregory took the opportunity to present his father with the pork he bit in half earlier. “Daddy, try it. It’s delicious!” he said coyly.
Ashton frowned and resumed his seat. He held up his hand in a gesture of rejection.
Gregory stuffed it back into his mouth. “Daddy is so petty to be jealous of me,” he mumbled to himself. “He wants Ms. Stovall to give him a piece too.”
“No talking during meals,” Ashton reminded him.
Gregory covered his mouth nervously. He had overstepped his prohibitions again.
With this gesture, even his hands were dirty from touching his saucy mouth.
Ashton frowned resignedly but leaned over and cleaned Gregory up with patience.
I couldn’t help but laugh at their antics.
Ashton was a macho man, but also poured his heart and soul in caring for his son.