I shut my alarm even before it had a chance to complete one ring.
To be honest, I hadn’t slept a wink last night. It had already been three thirty in the morning when I’d arrived home and it had seemed pointless to sleep for a mere two hours before I started working as Lancelin Eustein’s Scribt, or as the modern tern goes, Personal Secretary.
And it had felt like a good idea to go over the documents that Acelin’s team had compiled on his brother’s habits, likes and dislikes instead of sleeping. Working with Acelin and BlueStar had already prepared me for countless sleepless nights as well as numerous jetlags, but I had a feeling that Lancelin was going to be a whole other story.
Getting up at exactly six in the morning, I went straightaway to the bathroom for a warm shower to wake me up from the slight fatigue I was feeling. Once I had showered, I put on my robe and blow-dried my long black hair before combing it back and twisting it in a French twist on top of my head. Thanks to my Indian descent, my hair was naturally as black as midnight and it grew out faster than any of my friends.
For today, I chose to go neutral and subtle and chose a full-sleeved shirt in badge and paired it with a white pencil skirt and a jacket. After dressing up, I put on two pink pearl ear studs, small enough to not be noticeable and yet, elegant at the same time. Wearing white on my first day of work might be a bit risqué, but you only live once, right? At least that’s how it is in the world of us mortals.
I could have never imagined it myself even five years ago that immortals lived among us; that evolution had never been a straight line and we had always been deluding ourselves by thinking that humans were the only species that had evolved to be the creatures we are today. Demons, Incubi, Vampires and what not…not only do they exist, but they are far stronger and more intelligent than we can ever be. In fact, there were so many creatures that I was sure were way above my authorization level to know about…and to think that I would be starting work for the next Incubus King from this morning.
It all sounds so unreal. Even now, when I wake up some mornings, I sometimes feel like maybe it had all been a bad dream and today, things would be different. But it never is. I’m still the woman who works as an Incubus’s Scribt; I’m still the woman who has to keep the dangerous secret of the immortal world from the ones who are most dear to me…and I’m still the woman whose heart had been crushed so badly that even after five years, I’m still trying to piece the shards back together but to no avail.
I rimmed my eyes with the liquid liner, making sure to point the ends upwards to give a slight lift to my eyes. It was surprisingly Acelin who had told me to put on makeup right after I’d joined BlueStar as an intern.
“Beauty is a weapon.” He’d told me. “Use it to your advantage. You could be a plain Jane if that’s what you prefer; you’re intelligent enough to be brilliant at what you do even from the sidelines. But don’t you want to take control? Don’t you want to make the opposite party just stop and listen to what you have to say and make a lasting impression?”
And I had listened to him.
I didn’t know how he had figured out my constant need for control in my life at that moment, but he had and it was something I will forever be grateful for. Acelin had come into my life as a knight in shining armor when my life had completely fallen apart and instead of firing me because of the mess I’d been, he had instead helped me get back on my feet and start anew. But this morning, as I painted my lips a delicate pink in contrast to my usual reds, it wasn’t Acelin who I had in my mind, but his dauntingly sexy younger brother, Lancelin Eustein.
The look he had given me last night, as he exited the elevator, it was akin to the look a predator gives its prey before he devours it. I didn’t know why I had compared that look to that of a feral predatory animal, but there had been nothing distinctively tame about that look, nothing humanly in its hunger. It made a shiver of pleasure run down my spine, but my mind snapped me back to the present.
I’d met Lancelin before, several times. The first time had been at The Ritz hotel at a charity dinner hosted by a celebrity client of both ReefWood and BlueStar. He had looked dashing in a black on black Armani suit, his hair gelled back and his amber eyes looking like those of a Greek God. The only thing I’d done was fetch him and Acelin a glass of Champagne each and when I’d given him the glass, our fingers had brushed lightly, a feather light touch that couldn’t even been considered as a touch, but I had still felt it to my very core.
No! Not only was he my boss, but he was also an Incubus--a demon that feeds off sex. Not to mention, Lancelin was the next Incubus King! An immortal King for God’s sake! And if I kept this up, I will be jobless by the end of this week. Not that BlueStar wouldn’t appoint me back in a heartbeat, but there had been open challenge in Lancelin’s eyes as I left the office last night, and I never back down from a challenge. He can try his best to get rid of me, but getting fired was not an option for me. Because mortals were not supposed to know about the immortal world unless we were bound by a non-disclosure agreement.
And this was no simple ‘pay-for-the-damage-you-caused’ non-disclosure agreement. If I was ever fired because of some kind of negligence on my part, my mind would be wiped clean to preserve the secrets of the immortals and I would lose everything that I had in the last five years. Which is why I had trained myself to be the best at what I do. I had put Sanaya Johnson and Sana into two different worlds.
Sana was scared of the dangers that lurked in the shadows. She was scared of going to work the next day and becoming someone’s prey. Sana was filled with insecurities and flaws and she was trying her best to survive in this new world that no one had any idea about. Sana was trying her best to mend her broken heart and take care of her broken family.
But Sanaya Johnson was the exact opposite of everything Sana was. She was confident and brave. She faces the world head on and she makes people stop and stare. People believe her, people like her and people trust her. She does everything the Incubi want her to do without complaints. But most importantly, she does not mix business with pleasure. She knows her place and she knows exactly what dangers lay in front of her.
If Lancelin Eustein thought he could ruffle up my perfect image and throw me out like he had so many others, then he better think twice. He might have intimidated Sana, but Sanaya Johnson was not an easy prey.
“Bring it on, Lancelin Eustein.” I told my reflection in the mirror, ready for whatever challenge the day might bring forth.