Los Angeles—the city where all of your dreams come true. Rosie Jones couldn’t have imagined a life better than the one she’s currently living. She had just moved into a new apartment and meets a guy from across the hall, who has a secret of his own. Everyone warned her about him, but she didn’t listen. What happens when all of your dreams comes crashing down?


7. Six

That Saturday, a funeral was held for my dad. Many of our close family and friends said their condolences. It was nice hearing how much of a great person my dad was to them. When I went home after the funeral, Harry had come with me. I entered the Master bedroom, which my dad had shared with Rebecca. I had two different piles. One was for donations and the other was for safe-keeping.

Rebecca entered the room and said someone was here to discuss the terms of the will. I went out to the living room with Harry. The two of us sat down on the couch. Rebecca, Hannah, and Chloe joined us to hear what my dad had left for each of us. The three of them had their fair share of money, but it seemed like that wasn’t what Rebecca truly wanted.

My dad left the house under my name. Dad always said it was a family home and would only be passed down through a certain bloodline. Mine. Before us, my great-grandparents owned this home and my grandparents after them until it came down to my parents. “Why does she get the house?” asked Rebecca.

“Guess it’s clear to see who my dad loved more.” I answered. The looks on their faces were priceless. Harry and I flew back to Los Angeles the next day. A car had picked him up but proceeded to drop me off in front of my building. I headed up to my floor with my luggage and stopped in front of my apartment to unlock the door.

“You’re back.” I heard the door open behind me. Zayn had opened his door and leaned against the door frame. I wondered if he had heard me arrive. I nodded and proceeded to open my door. I walked inside and set my luggage in the living room. Zayn followed me into the apartment. “You didn’t call. I was worried.” said he.

I turned and faced him. It was hard for me to imagine that he was. I told him that I needed some time for myself. I was still coping with the fact that my dad had passed away. He reached out and pulled me into a hug. It was nice considering a hug was all I needed from him, from anyone really. “I’m just glad to be back here with you.” I looked up at him.

He smiled and kissed my lips. “So, I spoke with my manager about your demo. He’s taken an interest and wants to meet you next Wednesday during lunch.”

“You’re serious?”

“I am.” I wrapped my arms around him to give another hug. I couldn’t have been any more grateful. The next day I went to work and was back on the grind. I told Jane about my trip back home. She gave her condolences. I didn’t tell her that Harry flew out to see me. I have yet to tell her about Zayn. I did tell her that I may be getting somewhere with scoring a record deal. “See, good things do happen to good people.” Jane smiled.

The two of us were enjoying our lunch break when Cheryl walked it. Almost never does she walk into our break room since she’s always at her desk. “Rosie, can I speak with you in private?” I got up from the table and exited the break room with her. I could tell by the sound of her voice that something was wrong. I didn’t want to question her. Instead, I waited for her to tell me. “Anything you need Cheryl?” I asked.

“My husband, Jack asked me to help him get his restaurant more recognition. The only problem is that I’m a fashion magazine editor and can’t exactly write about it. Would you do me a favor by going there and interviewing him? I had a friend who was lined up to interview him for a local magazine, but they had caught the flu.

It would mean a great deal to myself and Jack. You’re a great writer and I trust that you’ll send me a copy of the finished product by Friday.” I agreed to doing her that said favor. Cheryl smiled and gave me a hug to thank me before walking away. Jane exited the break room and walked up to me. “What was that about?” she asked.

“I’m going to interview her husband, Jack about his restaurant.” After work, I was just finishing up when I had bumped into someone on the way out of the building. To my surprise, it was Zayn. He told me to get in his car. Without any hesitation, I got into the car with him and drove on down the street. “Where are we going?” I asked him.

There was nothing familiar about the environment. Maybe this was just another part of Los Angeles or somewhere on the outskirts. He said we were heading somewhere private. It was a place where he doesn’t take many people to. I wonder if he has taken other girls there. I don’t know why I’m thinking that, but Zayn seemed like the kind of guy that would. He parked in front of a house. “Do you own this place?” We got out of the car together and walked up to the front door.

“Also, I own a condo back in New York City, Seattle, and I lived in DC for a while. I traveled to Europe, some parts of Asia, and took cruises to Hawaii and the Caribbean.” I stared at him in awe. He chuckled lightly and began to unlock the door. I didn’t know what awaited for us inside. I was getting nervous just thinking about it. The door opened and I just stood there in amazement. “I’ll give you the grand tour.” said he.

I entered the house and he followed me inside. He started with the living room, the kitchen, and then we went down the hallway to the Master bedroom. He showed me the second floor that contained five guest bedrooms. He said there were two bathrooms—one on each floor. Afterwards, he led me outside to the patio. He explained how he would come out here to watch the sunset. Lastly, he showed me his garage. Okay, so he owned more than just an Aston Martin. “You never said you were this rich.” We exited out into the kitchen.

He took out two glasses and a bottle of wine, which he opened. “The manager I was telling you about…” He poured the wine and I nodded. He motioned to himself. I couldn’t believe it. My mind literally just exploded. Guess it was going to take more than just a minute to let everything sink in. “Why do you own a house like this and live in a ratty old apartment?” He took out a few items from the fridge. Does he cook too?

“It’s the reaction I get from other women. If I brought them here on the first date, it defeats the whole purpose of me being a normal person. Yet according to all of this, I’m not exactly normal, am I?” I shook my head in response to his question. He smiled softly and continued on with preparing his dish to cook. “I just don’t want you to think that I’m some hot shot millionaire who owns yachts and fancy cars. The record label is just a side job. Yes it’s a business that I own, but not the only business.”

“Then, why did you take me here?”

“I like you Rosie. You’re smart, beautiful, and talented. I want to sign you, but there’s a few things we have to cover. One, we have to go over the contract. Let’s just say it’s… insurance. There are certain terms and limitations before jumping into this whole industry. There’s a lot of competition out there. I just want to make sure that you’re willing to put in that time and effort. Two, you have potential. I’d like to test that.” Zayn had those playful eyes once again.

Sometimes I would like to know what he’s thinking. Then again, I wouldn’t have the courage to even ask him. Sometimes I feel as if I would regret my decision immediately if I asked. Zayn made us dinner and for the rest of the evening, we finished up the bottle of wine. “You have a piano?” I walked over and sat down. He told me that he doesn’t play all that much. I ran my hands across the ivory keys and started to play the melody of an original song that I wrote. It was from way back during the talent show days in high school. I remember winning first place.

“I won my high school talent show with this song and fact, this song doesn’t have words to it.” I told him.

“Let’s see if I can do something to change that.” he smiled. I started to play the song again, but with Zayn creating verses on the spot. Eventually my original song turned into a duet. Luckily, he had a notepad and pencils on top of the piano to write down the words. “Another song to put on the album, what should we title this one?” I was too drunk for my brain to function properly. All I remember was that I had stood up from the piano and blacked out shortly after. 

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