Nora wanted us to stay over for a barbecue that night, to which Hannah agreed readily. “No prob. Chandler can cook. He’s a good chef.”
Chandler blushed from the praise. Since everyone agreed to it, we went to get a mountain of ingredients and prepared for the barbecue, and it didn’t take too long to get the food ready. Nora said, “Call Ashton over, Scarlett. It’s quite late, so he’s probably done with work.”
Well, it was getting dark, and everyone was here, so I thought I’d invite him. It was a good chance for them to get to know each other. Then, I called him. It went through a moment later, and I asked, “Are you done, Ashton?”
“He’s still in a meeting, Mrs. Fuller. It might take a while,” a woman answered instead of him. It sounded familiar, but it took me a while to realize that it was Stella.
“I see. Tell him to call me back once he’s done.”
“Yes, Mrs. Fuller.” She hung up after that.
I frowned. Nora, who was washing the veggies, noticed it. “Oh, is he still working?”
I nodded. But he usually brings his phone with him. So why was Stella the one who took the call?
“Aw, and I thought we could have held a gathering. I just called Armond, and he said he’d come over since he has time,” Nora mumbled.
I gasped reflexively. “You guys came back from Moranta together?”
Nora didn’t seem to know what happened between Ashton and Armond in Moranta. She nodded and puckered her lips. “I don’t want to talk about it. I was going to stay here for a bit after Moranta, but he got on my nerves so much that I decided to go back.”
I stared at her. “Did you guys get into a fight?”
She shook her head angrily. “It’s worse than that. I thought he’s a gentle man, but he’s just a hypocrite.”
I froze, thinking that she might have seen his darker side, but then she said, “When we were still in A City, he promised me he’d take me to his parents when we came to K City. I got really nervous over it, but he fooled me and told me to go back after I have enough fun here. What a rascal!”
I frowned. So he’s still pretending to be a mild-mannered man in front of her, huh?
“I’m going to whoop his arse when he shows up. He sucks as a boyfriend. You know him well, so please lecture him for me, will you? He’s really too much!” Nora was a straightforward lady. Once she was done complaining, she went to chat with Hannah and Chandler.
I looked at her quietly and sighed. So Armond didn’t tell her about the incident in Moranta. But she should have met Holden, shouldn’t she? Didn’t Holden tell her anything? I texted Holden, asking him if he had told her anything about the fight between Armond and Ashton in Moranta.
The doorbell rang after I texted him, and Nora went to take it happily, despite the fact that she had just complained about Armond earlier. Even so, when she saw Armond standing outside, she snorted. “Well, look who has decided to show up?”
He looked at us before smiling at her. “I see you have a whole group here. Getting ready to beat me up, I assume?”
Amused, Nora pouted. “As if. Get in. Annoy me again and you’ll never hear the end of it.”
I was standing at the kitchen’s doorstep as he came in with her. He squinted at me coolly before putting on his warm, fake smile. “Rowdy night, I see.”
Nora snorted. “Of course, it is.” The, she introduced everyone to him.
I was still looking at him, but all I could see was that dark, eerie man in the café. That thought alone chilled me to the bone.
“He’s evil,” Hailey whispered, much to my surprise. When I snapped out of it, she had paled a bit, perhaps from shock.
I gave her a concerned look. “What is it? Are you feeling unwell?”
She shook her head and took a deep breath. “I’m fine.”
Nora came with Armond to say hi. “Why don’t you girls take a break and let him do it? He’s being punished for coming late, so I thought this is a good place to start.”
Armond was beaming brightly. He looked at me, then at Hailey. “You got a new friend, Nora?”
Nora nodded and held Hailey’s hand with a smile. “I almost forgot. He’s the boyfriend I’ve been talking about. His name’s Armond.”
In love, never say never chapter 947
Hailey still looked pale, and she nodded at Armond stiffly. She seems scared. Is it because of him?
Nora was a bit of an airhead, so she didn’t notice Hailey’s expression. She turned to Armond. “This is Hailey, my friend. She lives in A City, just like me.”
Armond smiled gently at her. “Hello. It’s a pleasure to meet you.”
Hailey was trembling slightly as she shook his hand. “Hello,” she whispered almost inaudibly.
Thinking that Hailey was just being shy around strangers, Nora smiled. “She’s a shy one, so socializing’s not her forte. Alright, let’s start the barbecue. We’re starving here.”
Armond smiled and went into the kitchen, followed by Nora.
I grabbed Hailey, then she dragged me out of the kitchen. Her hands were as cold as ice, obviously shocked from the meeting. She then downed a glass of water to calm herself.
Instead of asking her straight off, I waited for her to get a hold of herself. A short while later, she looked at me. “He’s evil.”
I paused for a moment. I knew she was talking about Armond, so I asked, “Do you know him.”
She nodded, then sat on the sofa and looked at the kitchen. “I’ve seen him before, but it has been quite a while since then,” she whispered.
I was going to ask more, but Nora and Armond were already back with the kebabs, while Hannah and Chandler made sure the flames were still roaring. Since everyone was going to dig in, I held my question.
I observed Armond while we were barbecuing, but he didn’t seem to know Hailey. How does Hailey know him and she’s even terrified.
“You’re spacing out again. What’s up with you?” Hannah handed me some food. “You have lost some weight. Here, have some kebab.”
I snapped out of it and nodded at her.
Armond squinted. “Indeed. I heard about your daughter. Tell us if you need any help.”
“Yeah, you don’t have to do everything alone, Scarlett.” Nora nodded
I forced a smile. “Okay.”
Armond had some of his juice and looked at me. “Your daughter needs a bone marrow and kidney transplant, doesn’t she? It won’t be easy to get the ones she needs. How’s it going right now?”
The moment he said that Hailey accidentally smashed the sauce bowl before her. She apologized and quickly cleaned it up, and Nora helped. “It’s fine. I can do this myself.” Hailey wiped the sauce off her clothes.
All the color had drained from her face, as if she was horrified about something. I had a strong feeling she knew something about Armond, much to my surprise.
Everyone sat back down once the mess was cleared up. Nora looked at me. “It won’t be easy to get a kidney transplant for a child, especially a matching one.” She turned to Armond. “Can you help her?”
Armond gave me a cryptic look. “I am sure there is a way.”
“Really?” Nora stared at him with excitement as she waited for his answer, but Armond only arched his eyebrow at me. “Let’s focus on the barbecue for now. We can talk about it after we’re done eating.”
Nora pondered on it. “Yeah, sure.”
I held Hailey’s hand again. Much to my surprise, it was still ice-cold despite the heater in the house. That told me the extent of her fear for Armond.
Hailey threw a look of terror at me, while I nodded at her and patted her hand to give her some courage.
Hannah gave me some greens, but I didn’t dig in. “Snap out of it, Scarlett. You haven’t touched your food. Can’t work up an appetite?”
I looked at the little mountain of food on my plate. “No. I’m digging in right now, okay?”
She beamed. “I’ve never had a barbecue before I met Chandler. It’s really awesome, you know. I can get addicted to it.”
Chandler blushed, then he gave her a piece of meat. “Dig in then. I can barbecue for you anytime you want.”
“You guys are totally gloating. That’s gross,” Nora threw shades at them, but she did the same thing with Armond with a smile on her face.
Nothing bad happened during the barbecue though. Once we cleared the table up, Hannah and Chandler went back to their place. Nora held my hand and told Armond, “Take her home, Armond. I can’t let her hitch a ride alone.”
“She can come with us then.” Hannah turned to Nora. “And her place is on our way home too.”
Before Nora could say anything, Armond interrupted, “Same here. It won’t be too much of a problem for us.”
In love, never say never chapter 948
Nora grinned. “I don’t think a happy couple like you should bring a third wheel along. Let Armond take care of this.”
Hannah wanted to retort, but Chandler whispered something and stopped her.
Then, Ashton called me. I took the call, and he said, “I just finished my meeting. Are you hungry?”
I felt more at ease after hearing his voice, then I went to the balcony. “No. Just had barbecue with my friends. Nora came today, and Hannah’s around too, so I was going to call you over, but you were working, so that’s that. Have you eaten though?” He just got out of the meeting, so I thought he must be hungry.
He chuckled. “Sounds like I missed out on a feast. Where are you? I’ll pick you up. Can you make some pasta for me?”
I smiled. “It’s not really good, you know. I’m at Nora’s place. It’s in the city center. Armond’s here too, so can you come over?”
He was quiet for a moment. “Sure.” Armond and us weren’t friends anymore, so that was the only way I could deal with Armond for the time being.
I made small talk before sending him my location, then I noticed Holden’s message. ‘Why didn’t you call me for so long, woman? Nora’s an idiot. Telling her is just going to be a waste of my time.’
Oh, it was probably about the thing I asked him earlier. I texted back before keeping my phone. I see.
Hailey sat quietly in a corner, trying to lay low. Armond and Nora were doing the dishes in the kitchen, so I sat down beside her and handed her a glass of water. “Did you come here for work?”
She took the glass of water and looked up at me. “The company needs clients.” She nodded. “I have to make the sales to keep it running.”
I looked at her silently. “Running a company doesn’t suit you. You should pursue your hobbies instead.”
“My father founded the company. It doesn’t matter if I like it or not, I have to hold the fort until he’s free. I’ll keep it running for as long as I can hold it.”
She’s stubborn. I guess there’s no point in persuading her. I nodded and shrugged. “Good luck.”
She glanced at me for a moment. “What’s your daughter down with?”
She stared down. “She needs a kidney transplant on top of a bone marrow, right?”
She pondered about something silently, gripping the glass of water. “I had a heart transplant before.”
I was surprised she’d tell me about that. I stared at her, and she smiled at me, but she still looked pale. “It was five years ago. I think my father was looking desperately for a heart just like what you’re doing now. I can’t imagine how tortured he must have felt then.”
I didn’t reply to that. For some reason, I thought there was something more to her case. A short pause later, she continued, “You’re right. Running a company isn’t what I like. I love to paint. My dream was to open my own art exhibition all over the world, but I don’t think that can be done now.”
I thought Hailey had depression to begin with, but I realized she had something worse. She looked like a normal girl from the outside, but her attitude told me she disliked human interactions.
She was more like an autistic person than a depressed one. Hailey tried her best to look normal, but she disliked talking to anyone from the bottom of her heart.
“Did you have something to tell me? Was that why you wanted to see me?”
She stared at me, her gaze clean and innocent. She had something to say, but she hesitated, so I advised, “It’s fine if you don’t want to tell me about it right now, but you can talk to me whenever you want to. I don’t know why you’re trying to talk to me even though you dislike me, but I know you have your reasons for that.”
I knew she had something to tell me, but she had no idea how to say it. All she did was stare for a while and looked down in silence. It was hard to get any information from someone with a mental illness, so I didn’t force her to talk. Then I looked outside into the night. Everyone has a battle we can’t see, huh?
“Armond is evil. Even Satan’s a nice guy compared to him,” she muttered, her voice trembling.
I looked at her again. She was pale, and her fists were red from being clenched too tightly. Obviously, she had a great struggle with herself before telling me that short message.
In love, never say never chapter 949
I wanted to help her relax, but she backed off by reflex and looked at me in confusion. “Sorry, I…”
I nodded before giving her some space. “Calm down. I won’t force you to talk. You can tell me about it when you’re ready. Don’t be scared.”
She bit her lips, her eyes tearing up. When Armond and Nora came over after they were done doing the dishes, Hailey darted into the bedroom, much to Nora’s confusion. “What’s with her?” she asked me.
I was looking at Armond, but he was still putting on his polite front. “It’s nothing. She’s unwell, so she’s retiring for the night.”
Nora nodded dumbly. “No wonder she looks out of place. Is the weather affecting her?”
I nodded. “Probably. Please take care of her.”
She nodded before going to Hailey’s bedroom, concerned.
Armond was giving me a warm smile. “You seem to be unhappy. Is it because I’m here?”
I pursed my lips. “You should end this with her if you don’t love her. Stop hurting Nora.” Armond was a mysterious man. I could never understand which part of him was real, and which was not.
He sat on the balcony’s sofa languidly. “I thought you should be more concerned about your daughter, but it seems you care about Nora more. Well, she is adopted after all, so I can see why you don’t really care about her.”
I held my anger down. “I’d shut up now if I were you.”
He smiled nicely. “I’m a talkative guy. Won’t you give me a chance, Scarlett? I don’t mind having an affair with you. I’ll tell Nora off if you’d say yes, and I’d keep it a secret from Ashton. Sounds exciting, doesn’t it?”
Armond was disgusting as usual. I looked at him coldly while holding my urge to hurl. “You’re disgusting, you know that?”
He dismissed my hostility. “But I like it and I’m having fun.”
I went to talk with Hannah and Chandler or I’d puke if I had to say another word to Armond. Honestly, I didn’t care about that psycho, but Nora was a newbie in relationships, so I didn’t want Armond to hurt her.
Hannah handed me some cut-orange. “Someone seems angry. Have an orange. It’s super sweet.”
I popped a slice of it into my mouth. “Mmm, it’s really sweet. Is Kiki with Uncle Louis today?” Kiki was still young, so Hannah usually wouldn’t be staying out so late.
The mention of Kiki saddened her, but she nodded. “John got him a nanny and had him stay with Uncle Louis. I could only visit him from time to time.”
I was surprised to hear that, since I thought John would at least let Hannah take care of the child. “He’s still young. Can Uncle Louis really handle him?”
Hannah nodded. “He has weaned, so it’s fine.”
Chandler looked at the time, but he didn’t urge Hannah to leave, though I knew he must have some work to settle. Luckily, Ashton called me. “I’m here. Come down.”
“Sure.” Then, I hung up. “I’ll say goodbye to Nora. It’s getting late, so let’s go home.”
Hannah nodded and came with me to say goodbye to the girls. Hailey was looking better, so she wanted to send us off, but I held her down. “Just lie down, Hailey.”
We went down together, and I noticed that Ashton’s car was right outside. Hannah bade us a simple goodbye before leaving with Chandler, while Armond stood beside me with his hands in his pockets. “You risked yourself to save Ashton. I’m looking forward to see the day when the roles are reversed.”
I shot a glare at him before trotting up to Ashton in silence. He was leaning against the car when I came up to him, then he hugged me. “He’s here too?”
He was referring to Armond. I leaned against his chest and listened to his heartbeats. That always gave me a sense of safety. “Nora called him over. She didn’t know about the incident in Moranta.”
Ashton looked at Armond sternly. Meanwhile, Armond was grinning eerily at us. That man was terrifying. For some reason, I had a feeling he could destroy us when we least expected it.
I held Ashton’s hand the moment we got into the car, refusing to let go. Ashton seemed slightly annoyed, but he let me do what I wanted and drove with one hand. Then, I noticed the watch on his wrist and froze. “Is this new? I’ve never seen this watch before.”
In love, never say never chapter 950
It wasn’t an expensive one. On the contrary, it was quite economical, and I didn’t remember seeing him owning a watch that cheap.
He looked at me in surprise and arched his eyebrow. “You gave me this watch, remember?”
Well, that was confusing, then I noticed the bouquet of flowers in the backseat, much to my surprise. “Why’d you put that in the car?”
He smiled at me. “This is for you. You’d say it’s too conspicuous, so I didn’t take it out. Honestly, aren’t you the one who bought this watch?”
I shook my head. “I didn’t buy anything for you lately, and this is a cheap watch too. It doesn’t suit you.”
He took off the watch and tried to throw it away, but I stopped him. Then, I took it to have a closer look. It was a niche European luxury watch, though a casual one. It didn’t fit Ashton’s air at all.
I tilted my head and arched my eyebrow. “Seems like another vixen is closing in, Mr. Fuller.”
He smiled. “Sounds like someone’s jealous.”
I shrugged. “You’re a lady magnet, so no surprise there, but this one’s interesting. She gave you a watch using my name, though it’s a cheap one. Seems like this girl’s a smart one.”
He arched his eyebrow too. “What do you mean?”
“I mean, you look like you eat caviar for breakfast, so everyone’s just going to give whatever’s expensive to you, but she didn’t. My guess? She makes four to five grand a month, so she’s probably working for you.”
He nodded. “Please continue.”
The watch looked like it was around three grand though. So the lady spent most of her pay on this, huh? “Mind if I ask you something? Why would you think I was the one who gave you this? Who told you anything of that sort?” I could just give him a present anytime I want. There was no need for the middle person, and we weren’t really that romantic, so such gesture seldom happened.
“It was already on my desk when I was done with my meeting. The writing looked like yours, so I thought you were the one who gave me the watch.” He frowned pensively.
I arched my eyebrow again. “So it’s your employee alright. How bold is that.” She pulled that stunt despite knowing that he was a married man. If that wasn’t bold, I didn’t know what was.
I wore the watch around his wrist again, but he dodged me. “What are you doing?”
I smiled. “Don’t let the lady down. She must have mustered a lot of courage to give you this.”
He pursed his lips. “Are you jealous?”
I shook my head. “Not exactly. You didn’t even fall for Rachel, let alone any other woman. I have faith in you. And we have a lot to deal with, so I won’t really care about something like this.”
He took the watch and tossed it into the trash can without even looking at it. To top it off, he didn’t even miss a beat in his driving. “Nice skills, Mr. Fuller.”
He smiled. “Thank you, Mrs. Fuller.”
That was the end of it then. It wasn’t like I didn’t care, but I had more pressing matters at hand, so arguing over something like that wasn’t worth our time.
The moment we came back to the villa and washed ourselves up, I went straight to bed. I got tired very easily with this pregnancy.
I would have overslept the next day if Ashton didn’t wake me up. I stared into space for quite a while. Then, Ashton came out from the changing room. “Earth to Scarlett. Get changed. The officers are going to take Jared to the hospital for the test. We’ll have to be there too.”
“Okay.” I nodded, but I lay in the bed, exhausted. “I wasn’t this sleepy in my previous pregnancy though. And I didn’t retch this time? Why is that, it feels odd?”
He sat down beside me and handed a bottle of pill to me. “Maybe the baby doesn’t want to tire you out this time, so it’s sitting quietly in there. Maybe it’s a girl.”
I leaned my head on his shoulder and frowned at the bottle of pills he was holding. “Why are you taking these pills so frequently anyway? What’s so good about them?”
I shook the bottle. “It improves the quality of my sperm.”
Goddammit, this pervert! I rolled my eyes before going off to bathe. Then, I had breakfast and changed. He was on the phone in the living room when I was done. I went up to him and patted his shoulder. “Let’s go. I’m done.”
He looked at me, but instead of taking me with him, he brought me back to the changing room and handed a thick grey coat to me. “Wear this.”
I shook my head, frowning. “This one’s too thick. It’s not even late into the winter yet. If I wear this now, I can’t go out for the rest of the winter.”
To my dismay, he hung up and wore it over me without giving me a chance to protest. “Lots of people are down with a cold in winter, and more so for you, because you’re not in the best of health. You have to take care of yourself.”