“Bet’s a bet.”
“Alright alright. I didn’t even do much. Just gave mom a suggestion. I guess she put it to consideration.”
“Prem’s desire for horses is temporary. Mother should be very much aware of that. And who would like to spend 5000 bucks for a twelve-year-old’s birthday present? The guy can barely get on the saddle, let alone actually ride the thing.”
“Oh if Prem wants a Camarillo, let him be,” Judy defends. “What’s done is done. You said you’d do as I say, don’t you dare go back on your word.”
Prem is the nickname for our painfully stubborn, beloved little brother.
“Let Claude do it, I’ll do something else,” I deadpan.
“Butlers on my blog have been prohibited since the Imposter incident. Suck it up, Aiz. Stop testing my patience.”
This is probably a sibling thing but Judy is the only person who calls me Aiz. It’s usually Zen for the vast majority.
I’ll keep testing her patience.
‘Ah, the Imposter incident,’ I thought to myself.
“Ah, the imposter incident,” I say thoughtfully.
“There’s no way I’m risking my blog being misunderstood and almost taken down as sham by majority votes ever again. It goes against a shedload of what I stand for. My image to the nation can’t take another hit that big.”
“With great influence comes great vulnerability,” I said in my best Gandalf impression. “That was on you.”
“It was your idea, little brother,” she spoke with menacing eyes.
“And you were content with it, dear sister,” I sneer. “Besides, who was it that came up with the title NATION’S EYE CANDY and had it in bold and all caps and had it in the font size of 50, followed by the image of our butler? T is thy doing, therefore t is thy fault. Now if you’ll excuse me.”
I turn on my heel only to be pulled back by my collar, stumbling backward.
“If you agree to do this, I'll give you intel on Hudson. Where he is, what he’s doing, his schedules, his favorite food, etc.” she murmurs, a hint of I-might-murder-you-in-your-sleep-if-you-don’t-agree present in her voice.
“Pfft, why..” I choked. “Why would I want intel on somebody who carries around his authoritative demeanor everywhere like some stuck-up Prince of Who Cares. His pretentious aloofness makes me wanna gag.”
I do want intel on his demeanor and aloofness. And his secret to looking sharp effortlessly every time he’s exposed to the public eye.
“Sure you don’t. You’re like an open book Aiz.”
See one of the couple hundred things I despise about Judy, at the same time appreciate at times, is her ability to sniff things out - like a sniffer dog on the lookout 24/7 for any gossip-worthy activity or news for TEATIME, her blog, pun intended.
“Honestly, Judy. He’s an arse and he’s boring. And that’s pretty bad for the son of a globally appreciated author with a profoundly well-known CEO as her spouse. It’s a shame, really. Plus his assistant can be a total nutjob,” I say in protest, showing the slightest admiration for the two people I believe genuinely deserves respect. Their creation caused by their intimacy, however, is a different story entirely.
“You’ve met his assistant?” I spoke too much. You can hear the curiosity in her voice. Her eyes widen, her ears perked — must’ve actually been a dog in her past life.
I hesitated for a moment before forcing out the words, “In a previous engagement.” I rubbed the back of my head in an attempt to ease the tension. I can feel her burning gaze. My soul is in danger.
Her eyebrows furrow into a muddled expression. And after another moment of heavy silence, “a what..?”