''O-ours?'' I frantically asked, my eyelids fluttering as if I wanted him to disappear. The beating of my heart doubled its pace, my mind racing with so many thoughts on why we would share the same room. Wait. Are we gonna share the same bed?

No, no, no. This can’t be it.

I mean, this man in front of me is not such a bad choice. Luscious looking lips, nice long fingers, well-defined biceps, perfectly toned and broad shoulders, eyes that could turn any woman into a putty with just one glance. He’s drool-worthy and all but, what about love? 

The gorgeous Italian didn't even spare a glance at me, as if he wasn't aware of my confused state. My feet were glued to the floor while I watched him move around the balcony. Placing down all the things in his hand one by one on the outdoor table. He moves gracefully like he’s been doing the chores of waiting tables regularly. Taking off his leather jacket, I got a good view of his figure in the fading darkness to dawn.

After a few moments of me literally drooling over him, he stood straight facing me, arms crossed over his chest. His biceps and chest screamed from his fitted black shirt in his stance. He titled his head to the side, motioning for me to sit on the outdoor couch by the balcony. Reluctantly, I followed his unspoken command.

When I was settled on my seat, he sat on the single sofa across from me, all the while never breaking eye contact with me. The dawn breaking in front of us, the sun peeking from the darkness of the night, swallowing the dusky black sky with its light. Sunrise and sunset never fail to amaze me all the time.

''Eat'' Gorgeous Italian pushed the basket of fruits in front of me and placed the green liquid beside it.

I wasn't hungry, all I wanted to know was this deal he was offering me, getting into business as they say. Plus, I wanted to ask him why he said this is to be our room earlier but I took one green apple anyway. This green liquid was confusing me as he opened the canister and offered - demanded - for me to drink it.

Taking the canister from his hand, my brows creased as I gag on the bitter, gooey taste of the green liquid.

''What is that?'' I coughed, slamming down the canister back on the table. Too bad there wasn't any water close to me.

''Finish it'' the man in front of me bossed. He grabbed the canister and pushed it to my face.

''No'' I raised my hand to stop him. He glared at me - yes he glared - and I glared back. We are now glaring at each other.

''It will bring your strength back'' he said in a monotone, I shake my head. ''It's either you drink it or I'll force this into your throat. Either way, ‘this’ will go in you, no?''

Oh boy, demanding fucking punk?

''Fine'' I snarled, downing all the liquid in one gulp. I shake my head, my face scrunching in the gruesome taste, taking a bite of the apple I was holding in my hand.

He didn't speak until I finished almost half of the fruits from the basket in front of me. ''What're your terms?'' he asked while I wiped my mouth with the back of my hand.

''What exactly does this ‘work’ entail?'' I leaned back on the chair, feeling the sun hit my skin for the first time in a long while. Hmm, freedom, fresh air, and sunrise.

''You'll do whatever I want you to do'' that actually made me laugh, so hard that I was clutching my stomach as I threw my head back.

''I'm not a puppet'' I mumbled after my laughter died down, wiping the side of my eyes.

''No, you are a slut, no'' he smirked as my face contorted with disgust ''you'll be my slut that is.''

Even the tip of my ears must be as red as tomatoes. The anger building inside me with his words was enough to match Mt. Pinatubo's eruption. He had insulted me twice now, first, he said that I am not pretty enough and now he’s degrading me? I don’t mind women using their bodies however they want, as long as it is what they wanted to do, and as long as no one is forcing them to do those things. The owner of that body is the sole decision-maker of how they wanted to use it.

Heaving a sigh, I controlled my anger. I need to know his intentions, there must be something that he wants from me. ''Do I get to know your name?''

The knowing smirk plastered on his lips widen ''Ace Romano.''

''Ace'' I echoed, his name does not ring any bell so I only bob my head ''what's your rank in the Italian mafia?''

The crease on his forehead verifies my assumption ''how did you know?'' I shrugged my shoulders as a smirk played on my lips now. ''I'm the Don.''

My eyes widened at his confession. He was intently watching me as I stuttered. ''T-the... D-Don?.. You... you're too young... H-how... S-Shit...''

Here I thought I escaped my faith from the Russian mafia only to face another crime family's offer. Say-yes-or-die kind of thing. Why did my life have to revolve around these people? With every escape I make, another person draws me back in and now I'm too deep to reject his proposition. Knowing too much about someone in this world can get you killed. By now I know enough to get me killed.

''I don't have all the time in the world to babysit you'' he said standing up from his chair. ''I'll be back tonight.'' He took two steps away from me only to hear him say ''just remember. You'll be dead before you could even step out of this room, gattina.'' (kitten)

I was still recovering from his revelations and here he is, threatening my life as if I was a little mouse inside the lion's den who'll try to escape.

‘’What did you just call me?!’’ I realize that he just threw another insult but the door in his room already slammed shut. ‘’Ugh!’’ I rubbed my face roughly with my hands, wondering what hell fate is planning for me now.

I still believe that someone is watching over me, Mom would be so disappointed in me for having my life tangled with these mafia families. First the Russians and now the Italians.

This was nothing new to me, I was just shocked to know that he was the Don. I thought the Don of the Italian mafia was Santino. This doesn't make sense because his surname is Romano.

I don't know how long I stayed on the balcony, savoring the glimpse of the sun and letting my body take all the vitamin D it needed.

The slamming open of the wooden door startled me, I stood up and hid behind the wall of the room, preparing my body to defend myself. Footsteps are closing in on the balcony, shoes clicking silently on the carpeted floor, and I was about to hit whoever the intruder was when an old lady screamed. Her shriek so high and pitchy that it made me wince, my eardrums must’ve bled. She held her chest, wide-eyed breathing raggedly.

She was wearing a black and white maid uniform, her black hair tied neatly above her head. The old lady's blue eyes glimmered in amusement as she raked my appearance from head to toe. I was still wearing the black sweatpants they gave me in the cell and a loose white tee which made me look like a human clothes hanger.

''Dios mío'' she murmured after her breathing calmed ''you scared me, niñita.'' (little girl)

Her Spanish accent made me remember my mom. Even the way this lady’s blue eyes look at me with no anger but pure curiosity made my heart throb for my mother’s affection.

''lo siento, Señora'' heat crawled to my cheeks as the realization hit me.

The old lady gave me a sheepish smile ''call me, Agatha'' she raked my appearance again, a small smile painted on her lips. ''I'm here to ask you what you want for lunch.''

''Oh, I'm Lian'' was this a perk of being Ace's fake fiancé. ''Pizza would be nice.''

The old lady's brows arched ''if I may. Pizza doesn't seem to be a good choice. You're too skinny already. Mind if I prepare a much healthier meal?''

I shake my head ''not at all.'' She gave me a handheld radio before walking out of the room. It was the first time someone in this place didn't try to kill me the moment they saw my face.

Ace said that I can't leave this room but he didn't say anything about me using his bathroom and clothes, right? A smile crawled on my lips as I planned to spend my day in the bathroom. Making sure that Agatha already left, I simply sniffed my armpit and gagged at the stinky smell.

Ugh. I will use up all of his body wash!

° ° °

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