Chapter 1

2228 Words
I stared at the group of people as they danced wildly to the beat as if they have nothing to lose. Nothing to be worried about. Nothing to regret. I gritted my teeth. Of course, I too have nothing to lose. What do I own in the first place to lose it? A drunkard man whom I call father? Well, I certainly don't own him and I, for sure, will lose nothing if he decides to get rid of me. Which is almost next to impossible because he needs me to survive, financially, I mean. I shoved the thoughts about my father aside and marched towards the people who are causing a scene here. I cleared my throat and not even a single person spared me a glance. Surprise, surprise! Who would even look at a teenager working in a restaurant? I plastered a fake smile and walked towards the source of their music. I smiled down at the man who was sitting next to the portable audio speaker before turning it off. Almost instantly the cheers stopped and I heard groans of disappointment as the little group of people turn around to glare at me. "Hi, you guys can't come into the restaurant and turn into a disco just like that," I said in a clear voice, still with a fake smile plastered on my face. The blonde guy with brown eyes huffed, "This place belongs to us, we can do whatever we want here. Heck, I would even plant a pole and hire strippers to pole dance here" He crossed his hands against his chest, glaring down at me. My left eye twitched a little in anger at his attitude. Who the f**k does he think he is? "This restaurant's owner never mentioned he had anyone other than his wife-" I started confidently and he started to shake his head- "Oh, you mean that old man who sold this place for a hefty amount?" He smirks, "Thomas?! Where the f**k you're at?" He called out Thomas making me confused. Thomas sold this place? Thomas literally ran into the restaurant, huffing for breath. He looked apologetically at me and then my colleagues who are at the counter. "Old man, didn't you tell your workers?" The brown-eyed man seethed to which Thomas shook his head, "Well, you tell them now to pack their pieces of stuff and leave this place right now. You know how our boss is right?" That man ran his hand through his blonde hair. By now my colleagues came to stand behind me, preparing for the worst news that we will ever hear in this restaurant. Thomas looked slightly troubled, "Guys, I sold this place and I am sorry I didn't inform beforehand" I could already see his eyes getting glassy, "My wife is in hospital and in a very critical condition so I had no choice but to sell this place" He wiped away that tear quickly. I looked at my colleagues and they nodded sadly, "It's okay, Thomas" I placed a hand on his shoulder and gave it a gentle squeeze, "Hope she gets well soon, alright?" I gave him an encouraging smile. "Thanks, Hazel" He sighed, patting my hand that was on his shoulder. Great. What are you going to eat until you find a job, Hazel? Dirt? I sighed internally and turned around to face that man, "You!" I pointed my finger accusingly at him, "You can at least give some respect and treat him kindly. Kindness costs nothing!" I told him while taking off the hat and apron. I gave a small smile to Thomas and my colleagues before walking out of the restaurant that was the only source of income I ever had since I was sixteen. I took the bus and went home. All the while thinking about my future and how am I going to find another job. I'd rather join a college. After all, I was the valedictorian of my batch. A poor valedictorian. My father was not at home and I felt slightly relieved that I don't have to confront him for the time being. I took a shower to calm my nerves and got dressed in something much more comfortable. When I walked out of my room to make some food, I noticed my father sitting on the sofa with a bottle of whiskey in his hand. I pretended to be oblivious of his presence. I was in the middle of pouring some milk into a bowl of cereal when I saw him come into the kitchen. "You're home early" He grunted out, "Someone bought the restaurant and I am jobless now," I told him, not sugar-coating anything. His mouth fell open in shock and for a moment he was speechless, "You're kidding, right? How we're supposed to survive?" He asked me the question that I kept asking myself for the last few hours. "I don't know" I answered him truthfully taking a spoon of cereal and stuffing it into my mouth. "I used up the money under your floorboards" He informed me out of the blue and that made me choke a little as I was eating. That was my savings money! "What the actual f**k? I worked nights and days for the money you used!" I stood and glared at him. Heck, I would even flip the table right now but that will only result in me buying another table. And I am broke as f**k now. "I was going to return the money but I couldn't win that f*****g game!" He said as if it was not a big deal. I opened my mouth to argue back at him but I thought against it. I know for the fact that no matter what I tell him it's useless. My money is gone and I will only get it back. Ever. So closed my mouth shut, balled my fists, and walked to my room, and shut the door behind me. And then I broke down. Silent sobs wrecked from my body as I thought of my fate. No matter how I try to get a grip around my life together, it feels like it's slipping through my fingers. I cried for what I felt like hours. I felt very tired and I was starving as I only had a spoonful of cereal. I wiped my cheeks furiously with the sleeve of my t-shirt and willed myself up. I pulled on an old ragged hoodie and grabbed my bag before getting out of this suffocating house. It was dark outside and I let my feet carry me to wherever they go as I had no idea where am I going. Eventually, I went to stand in front of a bar that's not far from my house and also it's just a walking distance to the beach. I stood there and eyed the bar warily. They will know that I am underage for sure and I will have no chance to even buy a drink as I had only a few dollars with me. I sighed. But there is something inside me telling me to just try my luck. Oh, look at this irony, me talking about luck. I was the unluckiest person to ever walk on this planet. "Get out little girl" Then bulky man literally shooed me away like a cat when I pushed the door to go in. I knew this was trouble when I walked in. I sucked my breath in and started to deny, "I am not a little gir-" He cut me off!, "Yes you are. Now get out!" He glared down at me, trying his best to look intimidating. Our little argument attracted attention and from the corner of my eyes, I saw a few head-turning around to look at us in interest. "Listen, I just had a bad day and I really need a drink or two" I sighed, my shoulders slumping in defeat. "Show me your ID" He held out his hand in front of me. "I am almost nineteen," I told him feeling a little ashamed to admit that I want to get drunk at this young age. "Still an underage girl to be drinking" He commented, "Get the f**k out before I call the police" He threatened me. With a sigh, I walked out of the bar. I took out a few dollars I had with me and bought myself some street food and walked to the beach. I sat there listening to waves crashing to the shore feeling a tinge of peace. I took my food out and began to chew absentmindedly as I watched the waves crash. How could God bless me with such a fate? No mother. Irresponsible father. No money. No friends. No love of my life. The list goes on pretty long, actually. I finished my food in a few minutes but I sat there enjoying a sense of peace until a man plopped down to sit beside me. "Who the f**k are you?" I seethed at him, ready to smash his nose to his face just in case if he tried to do something that he shouldn't, "Heard you back at the bar and thought of helping a little" He held a carton of beer cans, not even slightly intimidated by my reaction. "Are these drugged?" I asked him, feeling suspicious. But he simply shook his head before opening a can and taking a sip as if to prove a point. "Why are you doing this?" I whispered. I am actually taken aback by this complete stranger. Never in my life, someone ever gave me even a second glance. "I don't know either. May it's just your face looks so sad that it made me buy a few cans of beers" He answered me the took a gulp of the beer, "Now drink or give it to me before the police come and arrest me for helping a minor to drink" He whispered but I can sense a hint of amusement in his voice. "I am not a minor" I argued, getting annoyed, "Yeah, sure" He turned his head to look at me for the first time and I felt like my breath caught in my throat. He was actually the most attractive man that I have ever laid my eyes upon. His face looks like sculpted by the god himself. Strong and sharp jaw. Jet black hair and brown eyes are definitely the cherries on top. He must be at least twenty-five years old. I pull myself together and cleared my throat. I am happy that it's dark now and he cant sees my now pink cheeks. "What's your name?" I asked him, surprised that my voice is steady. "Enzo" He gave me an award-winning smile, "And you are?" He raised his eyebrows. "You don't even know my name but here you are buying me beers. This must-have costed a fortune" I waved my hands towards the cans, "As for your question, my name is Hazel" I gave him a small smile of my own. I was still a little wary of him. Just because he is handsome doesn't mean he is a good guy. Who knows he might be a thief or even worst, a rapist. "It suits you" He grinned, noting my hazel irises, "I could say the same but I have no idea what Enzo means" I retorted, opening a can of beer. "You look really familiar," He remarked to which I rolled my eyes. I get that a lot. I took a sip and choked, "What the actual f**k?" I gagged as the liquid went down my throat, "It burns my throat! How do people even enjoy this?" I asked no one in particular as I set the can down on the sand. Enzo was clearly amused when he watched my reaction to the alcohol, "You never tasted it before?" He asked me curiously to which I shook my head, "You'll get used to it, eventually" He patted my shoulder,"I hope not, I don't want to be a drunkard too" I blurted out without thinking. Enzo raised his eyebrows, obviously noting the change in my tone. But I pretended to be oblivious. "So why is this little lady badly needs a drink?" Enzo asked me, trying to make a conversation. "It's a sob story, really" I waved it off. I do not want anyone to pity me. "Well, the night is still young and I am all ears" He pressed. "I lost my job and went home only to find out my father used up all the savings that I hid under my floorboards," I told it in one breath. And it actually felt nice to let it out. To talk to a person about it, it feels like the weights lifted off from shoulders. Not much but maybe 2kgs? "That sucks" He replied to me, looking in front. "It does" I agreed looking at my watch, "I have to go," I said standing up and dusting off the sand from my jeans. "Thanks for the drink, it tastes like crap but I appreciate it" I fished for my wallet inside my bag and took a twenty-dollar that I 'hid' from myself. "Nope" He shook his head as he pulled himself to stand, "The drinks on me. Besides, you only had a sip" He smiled down at me. Woah he must at least a six-foot-tall. "I insist" I waved the money in front of him. "Nope" He grinned, "Alrighty then" I smiled, a little grateful because I do not have to lose the money to him. "See ya" He waved as I took the rubbish I made while I ate and threw it into the trash can. "Yeah, sure" With that, I walked away from Enzo. But something tells me that I would definitely see him again.
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