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Chapter 3: Carlos Ronaldo, The Devil

“After a two-hour finale at The Australian Open, The Devil on court, Carlos Ronaldo achieved his eighteenth Grand Slam win,” reported Roman, a news anchor of BNC Media.

“Exactly, Roman,” said the other news anchor, Denis, “And we could not be more proud, knowing that Carlos was born and raised in Braeton City!”

“Yes, that’s right.” Roman acknowledged. “Carlos Ronaldo is the son of the former veteran tennis player, Manuel Ronaldo. What happened to his father was a shock to everyone. His father died in a car accident, and his family lost everything. His mother, Agnes Ronaldo, became ill, and out of depression from Manuel’s death, she also passed away.”

“Despite how tough life was for him, that did not stop Carlos Ronaldo from rising into fame, giving his father the honor he deserves, and using tennis, a sport his father loved the most!” Announced Denis. “I’m sure his father would be proud.”

“For years, Carlos fought against odds, starting at the lowest ranks playing tennis. In his first year, he played feature tournaments to challenger tournaments. In his second year of playing, Carlos finally reached ATPs, the Association of Tennis Professionals, ranking at around two hundred. And it was six years ago that he entered the most prestigious tennis events in the world, the Grand Slam tournaments. Finally, after three years of playing the Grand Slam, he won the US Open and remained undefeated on his home court to this day! Then, he became widely known as The Devil on court.”

BNC Media aired a video of Carlos’ old matches in that program. It was Roman who reported, “He is one of the most fierce. He had such powerful, fastest serves -”

“And let’s not forget about the backhand, Roman. Carlos Ronaldo’s backhand stroke earned him the title; The Devil!” Denis pointed out. He shook his head and added, “They are unrelenting.” 

“You know, Denis. It’s funny how it started when his opponent called his backhand as The Devil,” the news anchor revealed. “And since then, Carlos Ronaldo had been named The Devil on the tennis court!”

“And now, at twenty-eight, Carlos Ronaldo has achieved his first-ever number one rank in the world!” 

Both Dennis and Roman, the news anchors, cheered for Carlos, proud of a Braeton local. 

“Although, in the world of tennis, we don’t know for certain how long this ranking will last, but we will keep applauding Carlos for his achievements! Besides, there are three more Grand Slam tournaments this year, and so far, he had had his winning streak,” Roman added. “We are proud of you, Carlos Ronaldo!”

“On another news, still about The Devil on court, our favorite tennis superstar announced his separation from William Mckenzie’s management,” reported Dennis. “This came about after his birthday party.”

Kate was at her twin brother’s penthouse, watching the news. She agreed to watch over her nephew while Kaleb attended an evening meeting. 

It wasn't long ago when Kate swore not to listen to anything about Carlos. She closed that part of her life and no longer wrote in her “Carlos” journal, but it was so hard to switch off the television when the news about him was so interesting. 

She may still be hurting because Carlos was in a relationship with Hailey Mckenzie, but she was still proud of his accomplishments. Hearing how he would no longer be managed by William Mckenzie, Kate’s eyes widened. She could not believe her ears. ‘Why would he want to separate from Mister Mckenzie’s management?’

“Papapapa! Papapapa!” 

Kate became distracted, following her nephew’s blabbing. She turned to Liam, hushing him, “Liam, baby. Be quiet. Auntie is going to listen to something important -”

“Papapapa - Hwah! Huuwah!” With her nephew crying, Kate sighed in surrender and took the baby in her arms. She called his nanny. It was only after giving his nephew to the nanny that she searched online about Carlos’ decision to separate from William Mckenzie. 

She first found the press release coming from William Mckenzie. It read:

[I am saddened by Carlos’ decision to have control of his career, but it is understandable. He is someone who can already stand on his own two feet. Everyone, at some point, wants independence. Carlos is like a son to me. My family and I will always be grateful for sharing his success with us. He does not owe us anything. He has paid me back in waves unimaginable. 

I managed Carlos for nine years, even at the start of his rigorous training. We had nine years of relationship, but sadly, all good things end, and I am also getting too old to travel with Carlos in his matches. I wish Carlos all the best, and he knows he can always come to me. He has a home in my family.]

Browsing through the internet, Kate read about the possibility that Hailey Mckenzie and Carlos were in a relationship. Still, she could not find any statement coming from Carlos confirming this. She found it strange that such an eventful public display of affection did not reach the internet. She speculated, 'Are they really a couple?'

Kate groaned, contradicting her thoughts, “Of course they are, Kate! They kissed!”

The following article Kate saw was about Carlos, expressing his thanks to William Mckenzie. In that article, it read:

[I cannot thank William enough for all the help. When my father and mother died, I lost everything. Our neighbor became my shelter and my second family, and while my second family supported me with my dreams, I pursued them with Mister Mckenzie.

William brought me to places I never thought were possible. He introduced me to the best tennis training facilities, further enhancing my skills. Without him, I would be nothing today. For that, he and his family will always have a special place in my heart. However, the time has come for me to move on with the next chapter in my life. I have ventured into business and have a new team to handle the more considerable pressure of my daily routine.]

Kate stopped reading at that point. All that lingered in her thoughts was how Carlos mentioned his second family. Her jaws clenched, thinking, ‘He could not even say our names.’

Kate's forehead creased at the thought of Carlos naming the Mckenzies as the family with a special place in his heart. She felt her chest congesting, just utterly upset. “Did he never think about us? About me? Was all that for nothing?"

She threw her head back, asking, “Why did you go to the Mckenzies, Carlos? Why?”

Filled with these questions, Kate left and merely called his brother, telling him that she could no longer wait for him. Then, Kate went home and sought her father. 

Kate quickly found him having tea with her mother. When Kate's father turned to her, giving her his attention, she asked, “Dad, why did you never offer to sponsor Carlos’ training? Why did you let him go to the Mckenzies? He would still be with us and not with them. Why Dad? I don’t understand!”

Her parents, Ethan and Samantha, looked at each other. Then, urging her daughter to sit with them, Ethan suggested, “Kate, it’s not what you think.”

Kate remained standing there, waiting. When she could no longer contain the heaviness in her heart, she cried, asking again, “You are rich enough to give him what he needed. Why did you never give him that chance back then, dad? Why?”

“Kate, I did,” Ethan revealed. “I offered to send him to the best tennis schools.”

“What?” Kate asked, her brows knitting. 

“Your father did, Kate. I was there when he offered Carlos,” Samantha reported. 

“The first time I offered it to him, he was still sixteen. He said he would think about it. When he was seventeen, I asked him again,” Ethan divulged. “He said… he did not want to be away from you. He said he would rather work for me at the company and not pursue tennis if it meant being away from you, Kate.”

Somehow, that did not surprise Kate. The Carlos she knew in the past would do anything for her. However, learning of this further crushed her heart. 

“So when he took that offer from William Mckenzie, trust me, Kate, I was equally hurt,” Ethan admitted. He paused briefly before asking, “I don’t mean to bring this up, Kate, but I think… the better question is… What did you and Carlos talk about that made him go to the Mckenzies?”

“Knowing Carlos, he would never leave you, Kate. What exactly happened?”

After listening to her father’s words, Kate sucked in a breath. She wiped the wetness on her face and replied, “I - I hurt him, dad. I hurt him.”

Kate’s mouth opened, ready to tell. 

Comments (3)
goodnovel comment avatar
Aep Saefuddin, Lc.
it's great
goodnovel comment avatar
Sonia Aka Debs
So Kate dearie what did you expect by hurting him? He had to make a name for himself.
goodnovel comment avatar
Genevieve Mendoza
Great story
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