"You seriously don't want to date that girl?" Steven, one of the Casino dealers and a friend of mine, asked me. He's always too friendly to any girl, but he's a womanizer, and this handsome blonde guy's face and charisma always get those girls on their knees. I just shook my head, ignoring his stupid questions.
"Dude, that's a hot chick right there! You're a jerk if you don't see she's hitting on you," he continued. He is adamant that I date all of the girls who have shown interest in me. For the love of God, promiscuity is not my thing.
"Steven, I don't have time for that; now, let's just get back to work, shall we?" I walked back to my place, leaving him standing by the poker table.
L Hotels and Casino is my kingdom, and this is where I have all of my fun, but guess what? Girls aren't invited to join in the fun. Cards, numbers, money, and alcohol are all enjoyable and thrilling to me. I enjoy girls, but I'm not the kind to fall in love with someone I met at the casino, because I've encountered people who come here for a little respite from their daily life, hoping to escape reality. I'm well aware of this because I've heard enough of their stories when they try to obtain information about me, but I've never provided any. All I do is listen to what they have to say. Plus, I'm not sure they'll understand my sexual preferences.
Aside from the girls, the majority of the folks are here to have a good time and play games. Some people win, while others lose. Those who have lost in the game usually return in the hopes of making amends. I've been working here for five years and have witnessed a lot. Illegal organizations, syndicates, politicians, and high-ranking government officials all converge here. Many people have developed a gambling addiction. To the extreme, one must sell his or her property and borrow money to return here and try again.
Playing in the casino requires tough decision-making; if you let your emotions and pride control you, you will almost certainly lose everything. You can still avoid bankruptcy or even win the game if you're clever and know when to stop and go.
When it's my schedule, the table is always full, which means it's going to be a long game with six decks of cards. Everyone had already placed their wagers, so I began to lay out the cards on the table. I usually make sure I don't lose attention when I'm playing since I hate making errors. It's amusing that all of the players are female. I wasn't surprised, but I did notice the brunette in the middle -a new face.
"Welcome to L Hotels and Casino, ma'am," I welcomed her. She was taken aback at first but soon responded with a nod. She's dressed in a black sleeveless garment that reveals her creamy skin. The neckline exposed a large portion of her cleavage, which I never failed to notice.
"New here?" I asked.
"Yeah," she answered briefly.
"Hey Khali, give me a winning card, baby," the girl next to the brunette said. It's Mich. She's been hitting on me ever since, and she's become a regular here. She's the Mayor's daughter, and she doesn't seem to mind how much money she spends. Her mother is Japanese, thus she inherited her mother's features. Her smile is adorable and charming, but it wasn't enough to make my heart skip a beat.
"Let's see, baby," I smirked, and she winked at me. I'm not interested in hooking up with any of the girls here, but that doesn't mean I'm not entertaining them. I still have to be kind and pleasant to them since they are high-rollers.
We've already started the game, and I'm noticing the brunette who has been drinking heavily and is also losing. Is she even capable of playing? She's almost drunk, which is one of the biggest mistakes a player can make. If you get intoxicated while playing, there's a good possibility you'll lose focus and lose your game.
"Ma'am, you're out of chips; I'm sorry; may I know your name?" I inquired.
"You're talking to me?" she said, which I find strange but entertaining at the same time.
"Yeah, I'm talking to you," I said, "do you still want to bet?"
"Of course!" she said, pulling out a thousand dollars and slamming it on the table. My brows furrowed. She seemed to be attempting to impress everyone with her wealth. I simply nodded and exchanged her cash for chips.
"Girl, you're already wasted; go home!" exclaimed another player on the right.
"No, you go home; I'm still having fun here," she snapped at the girl, and I find her attitude hilarious.
Any person would appreciate this brunette’s beauty. Her fluffy cheeks and alluring cat-like eyes were enticing enough to make me hesitate a little. Wait. Did I just use the word alluring? I simply ignored my thoughts and continued to watch her. Her clothing is sultry on her, and I can tell she isn't your average woman. Her long hair was precisely ponytailed, and she was wearing Chanel earrings. I find her threatening in a manner when I observe her more closely, yet this does not cause me to be concerned. Yes, of course. I'm Khali Luciano, and no one bothers me. Her lips were curled in displeasure at the girl who kept telling her to go home. Cute.
I began laying the cards on the table, and she got 11. I have 10. I put another card horizontally when she motioned to double down. The card is 9 of hearts, so she got a total of 20. I was about to flip my card when she raised her hand, so I came to a halt.
She challenged me, "Wanna bet? If that card is a low-value card, you'll be mine."
My brows wrinkled in dissatisfaction. I thought she'd be different than the other girls, but I was mistaken.
"Hey, bitch! That's not fair! Khali is mine!" Mich shouted.
"Excuse me? She's never yours!" Another girl exclaimed. Security was on the lookout and had been briefed on the situation, but I told them to wait.
"Girls, calm down, please. Calm down!" I told them. The insults went on, and I'm glad they all stopped after I told them to. I returned my gaze to the young woman with feline-like eyes. Those eyes were hypnotic, but I'm not going to fall for it.
"I'm sorry, ma'am, but we only bet chips here," I explained, but she raised her hand again, leading me to stop turning the card.
"How about if the card is a high-valued card, I'll give you a million dollars in cash," everyone gasped, but I wasn't impressed in the least. I sighed and considered accepting her offer, but I'd like to tweak the mechanics. She appears to be completely wasted, which I may utilize to my advantage. I'm confident that I can persuade her.
"How about you beat me in three rounds and see what happens," I grinned. She took a moment to consider her options. I was hoping she would take me up on my offer. There's a slim chance I'll win this round and even fewer odds that this card will be high-valued.
"Nah! Let's keep it simple: if I win this round, you're mine," she said again. I inwardly pursed my lips and slowly sucked in some air before violently exhaling. Fuck!
My card is 10. I'll consider myself lucky if I get an A or a low-value card, and then I'll just keep hitting until I reach 21. But if I do that, there's a high risk I'll get busted. I can't put my reputation on the line with this wager.
"No," I said emphatically. My patience was tested by her contemptuous snort and chuckle. My mouth was clenched as I found her chuckle both irritating and fascinating. She dared to make fun of me!
"So, you accept that you're not the best in this game?" she asked, and I succumbed.
"Khali, don't listen to her, just keep playing the game; can you call security?" Mich yelled, quickly losing patience. I clenched my teeth and prepared to flip the card, but fear kept me from doing so. I was sweating profusely, but I was determined to maintain my composure. I'm in a precarious situation right now. I exhaled deeply and closed my eyes. My reputation is at stake.
"OK, if I win this round, you're not allowed to come back here again; if you win, okay, I'll agree to your condition," I said.
"What? Are you crazy?" another girl exclaimed. Steven was probably laughing his ass off at the other table, which pissed me off.
"Yes! That's the kind of fun I'm looking for!" exclaimed the obnoxious kitten, and I took a deep breath before flipping the card. It's 7. As I exhaled out, my hands were trembling, and I felt like I had run a mile. No one has ever made me feel this way before. I swear, I'm going to make her pay. When I saw the card I flipped was 7, I let out an unintentional hiss and softly swore. I should've agreed to her first stipulation. In terms of card points: 7 is equal to 0. She didn't specify any conditions for getting a 0 value. Shit! I can see her grin from where I'm standing across the room.
"I presume you want to hit?" she teased. If only I could instead hit a kitten in the face. I took another card, secretly hoping for a 3 or 4 on it. I was gasping for air when I flipped it. I can hear the gasps and whines of the girls around me. I felt like my world crumbled into pieces.
"Fuck!" I got 6. I lost. I fucking lost.
She rose and placed a calling card on the table, saying, "So, you're mine now." I can only clench my hand, quietly wishing that this is all a nightmare and that I'll wake up tomorrow realizing that this girl with feline eyes and chubby cheeks is nothing more than a figment of my imagination. That's what I wished for, but it's real! Fucking real! A newbie had just humiliated me in front of these people.
"Call me tomorrow. Don’t try to run away. I can still find you," she said as she winked and blew me a kiss before walking away from the table.
"I can't believe this! I've been here a year, and that beginner got you in an hour?" Mich complained and stormed out. I rubbed my temples and closed my eyes.
"Sorry, girls! Khali is now taken!" Steven said alongside me, his arm swung around my shoulder, but I quickly pushed it away out of irritation. I despise it when others make fun of me. He just tapped my shoulder with a chuckle afterward.
Tell me, this is just a dream! Can someone fucking slap me in the face?! I can't believe this!
"This is so fucked up!"
Steven picked up the calling card from the table and began reading it aloud.
"Jane Terranova, CEO of JT Telecom. Wow! You've got yourself a young, gorgeous, blazing hot CEO!" he patted my shoulder once more, and I pushed him away. I wasn't impressed in the least. I don't care if she's the Prime Minister's daughter or the most renowned woman on the planet. All I care about is my reputation, which has now been tarnished.
[JANE] I grumbled as I moved my position on the cold yet comfortable bed. My time in dreamland had been cut short due to constant throbbing pain in my head. The agony spread from the bottom of my brows to my temples and forehead. Ugh! I'm never going to get drunk again. My eyes fluttered open, and they began to adjust to the light flowing in through the side window. When did I get such a small window? I ignored my initial bewilderment and went back to sleep, only to be startled awake by the alarm clock's loud ringing. Before I finally allowed my eyes open wide, I snarled and ruffled my hair. The ceiling is white and blue, the covers are blue, the walls are foreign, and the door is different! Oh my fucking God! I sat up right away, but that only made my headache worse. My headache is killing me. "God! It hurts!" I sighed and cast my gaze about the room. "Where the hell am I?" I wondered aloud, disregarding the pounding of my heart caus
[KHALI] ~Flashback~ My schedule had already ended, so I was simply strolling around the casino, as usual, taking in the sights. It's a requirement of my pitboss job. I reached the slot machine section as I continued walking. Those who dislike playing cards prefer to use a slot machine. It is, in fact, simple. You just have to load up your machine, choose your pay lines, set your bet, hit the button, and have fun. Easy, right? But I couldn't fully enjoy my evening since the thoughts of that Jane Casanova— yeah, whatever her name is— irritated me. Not only did she humiliate me in that round, but I was also compelled to be her property. Nobody has any claim to me. I own myself, and I've never intended to be someone else's property. I despise it when someone forces me to do something I didn't want to begin with. I decided to leave the noisy slot machines alone and call it a night. I noticed a guy forcing a girl to get up from where she was sittin
[JANE] I can't believe I gave in to her demands. Ugh! I didn't have a choice because my father would still pressure me on dating that arrogant, rude guy—Nicholas. Nicholas Terranova is a jerk. If you believe he is a decent and honorable man. Well, you're completely wrong. He's the worst person I've ever met, and I'd never want to be around him. He was the one who approached my father and requested if he could date and marry me in exchange for them investing in our business. To be honest, I'm happy with what we have now, but my father has a lot of goals, one of which is to expand our business to other countries. Here in South Korea, we own the largest telecommunications firm. I couldn't believe my father would sell me for Nicholas' family's investment. "It's just a date," he explained, "and Nicholas' family is powerful, and he's a lovely guy." When I think of that, all I could do is roll my eyes. I'm not sure how I'm going
[KHALI] "So, what happened last night?" Jey asked while grinning like an idiot. We're here in the casino, and she's been pestering me all day about that girl; I mean, now she's my girl. No, my slave. Yes. My slave. I frowned at her for the nth time. "Nothing happened, Jey. How many times do I have to tell you? NOTHING HAPPENED. OKAY?" I accentuated each syllable in the hopes that it would penetrate her obstinate mind. "I seriously doubt it. How can you let that opportunity pass by?! Hello!" she said, snapping her fingers in front of my face as if she were waking me up. I sighed and rolled my eyes in annoyance. "Jey! I'm not like you! I'm not going to take advantage of her simply because she's drunk; plus, I'll see her again this week," I said flatly. If there's even a touch of excitement in my voice, I'm sure she'll think maliciously, but I know how her mind works. That's how she thinks all the time. "Wait! Wow! Wow! Really!?"
[KHALI] She's completely insane. Today I'm the pitboss, and I can't just abandon my responsibility for a crazy girl like her. Now that I'm here in the Casino for a hectic night. She's such a pain in the ass, and she's a stubborn one at that. I hate unplanned events, and this girl is causing havoc. She's a capricious maniac. I used to have the ability to predict people's minds. I can readily guess what's going through their heads, what they'll do next, and what their possible plans are. But this brunette is making things difficult for me. She's a thorn in my side; I can't predict her intentions if she has any at all. She's like a bug in my system, making me do things I don't want to do. I requested someone I trusted the most in terms of casino operations to keep an eye on the place for a while. I slammed on the pedal and sped
[KHALI] The ringing of my alarm woke me up. I moaned and groped for my phone, which was evidently on my nightstand. My eyes slowly opened, and I checked the time; it was already 7 a.m. What time did I sleep last night? 2 a.m? I couldn't sleep last night, so I drank myself to sleep. I can smell my breath, reeks of alcohol, feeling a little disappointed in myself. I used to be an organized person, but one girl ruined my plans. I exited my room and proceeded to the kitchen. Beer cans were strewn across the floor. "I'll just let her clean this," I murmured. I took a glass, poured some water, and chugged it down. She's supposed to be here at this hour. I furrowed my brows as I glanced at my watch. My mind flashed back to the memories of last night; her scent, her heavy breathing, her smooth skin. No! No! No! I exhaled sharply, closing my eyes. She's making me insane! I decided to first take a shower in the hopes of clearing my mind a
[KHALI] I watched the brunette as she put on the gloves and apron hanging by the sink. I was determined to give her more challenges from now on. Let's see if she can make it through the week. "Are you sure about this, Khali? Don't you think this is too much?" Jey returned shortly after escorting the chipmunk girl out of my apartment. "Yup, I haven't done anything yet," I looked at her with my brows creased. She’s still wearing her disapproving look all over her face, but I didn’t care. She leaned on the couch, shaking her head. "Okay, fine," she shrugged, then gasped out loud. Her mouth was wide open in a broad smile. I couldn't believe how quickly her mood could shift. "Oh my God! I think I'm in love!" she exclaimed, "Reese is so kind and cute!" I’m surprised that she’s now addressing her on a first-name basis. She looked at the ceiling dreamily, and I just grimaced at her reaction. I stood up and sarcas
[JANE] I was just silent as we headed back to the car. Jey must have noticed my silence after she loaded the groceries into the trunk. "Are you alright?" she asked curiously. "I can't believe Khali thinks I'm dating you in the middle of the day," I grumbled as I slipped my phone into my pocket. "What? Seriously? I'm sorry. But really, she's a nice person. It's just that after that—uhm—I don't know if I'm in the position to tell you about it, but let's say, there's something happened before that made her lose her trust in everyone. She's quite skeptical of everything, and she hates when someone humiliates her or someone looks down on her. She hates that," Jey explained. "It's normal to be skeptical of things, but she's just too