Chapter One: Choices, Choices, Choices
Fayth Day contemplated some very bad thoughts that involved the steak knife in and suicide or homocide. Her very young step-mom Claire went on and on about how she should wear a dress while a slime ball reporter eyeballed her.
She did not wear dresses like her new stepmother, who seemed to be a reincarnation of Barbie. Fayth wore blue jeans, teenaged expressional t-shirts, and tennis shoes. She was very low maintenance, and she was well known for being amusingly random and food-obsessed. Thanks to the high metabolism kick-boxing and martial arts gave her; she didn't have to worry about weight. Like any good stepdaughter, Fayth didn't like her stepmother Claire or her wicked stepsister Erica, whose main obsessions were stealing other people's boyfriends, shopping, fashion, gossiping, and torturing her stepsister whenever she was home.
Fayth had returned home from her trip with her mother from Africa earlier to find her boyfriend Clay in her bed with her stepsister Erica and had ended up throwing a book at him. He sat there at the table during the dinner currently with a big bump on his head, while Erica clung to him. Everyone at the important dinner was watching her, waiting to gauge her reaction.
She smiled, as she attempted trying not to cut something other than her food and not to lose her mind. It didn't work because she was already crazy. Fayth was daughter of Carl Day, the big time billionaire/fashion designer/businessman. As an heiress, Fayth made good news even if she didn't do anything but stay up in her house. The Days were even better known for being enemies with the Ashtons, and they had been enemies since Fayth's great-grandfather had started the business.
Her father Carl had been acting nervous all night. Fayth knew something was up and was wondering if it had to do with a certain mysterious family member that rarely came to visit.
The doorbell rang and she jumped at the chance to get out of what she termed the 'dinner and a show'. Knowing it was her friend and fellow med student Lee Michaels, that she invited so she ripped open the door. "You have to save me!" she exclaimed and fell into a pair of muscular arms. "Take pity on a poor soul and get me out of here before I restore turn to dramatic measures, like using that steak knife." Then she realized the arms weren't Lee's. She looked up to see unfamiliar face. "Oh, I'm sorry. I thought you were someone else."
He felt bitter at the words 'I thought you were someone else'. Here was this beautiful redhead bombshell, and she thought he was someone else! His ego was insulted. It was if she had ripped it from him, stomped on it, and spat on it. Those pretty emerald eyes brought on a new attack. He had never felt this way before. Dang! Now he sounded like a lovesick fool.
"What kind of desperate measures?" he whispered seductively, bending nearer to her.
The press cameras started flashing, and he did what any insulted guy would do. He went for revenge. His lips were on hers before she could protest. She was amazing soft and inexperienced, he noted. His revenge was stealing a kiss and making a scene within the press that neither one of them would ever live down.
"Who are you?" Fayth asked.
"Cade Ashton," he responded with a cynic smile.
Dang! He's a good kisser. Uh-oh. The press is going to have a heyday with this because of the whole family mortal enemies thing. And what is he doing on my porch? she thought.
Fayth dragged him inside and slammed the door in the photographers' face.
"I've never seen a girl work so fast," Cade teased.
"Ha. Ha. Ha. Har," Fayth said in false amusement. "That kiss wasn't funny, C—" His gray eyes captured her green ones as he moved closer. She stood still while the black-haired hottie came near. His hand caught from her neck, and he kissed her again.
"Are you saying that wasn't good?" he whispered huskily when she pulled away.
"I wasn't saying it wasn't good. It was. Not that you need to know with your ego. I wished you wouldn't have done it in front of the press! Now we're even bigger news." She pushed him away, stumbling in the process. They both fell into the coat rack.
The rest of the household came to find them wrapped in each other's arms. Fayth wondered if it looked as bad as she thought it did. Oh, well. At least he's hot, she thought in mild, random amusement.
"CADE!" Cade's dad, Alan Ashton, exclaimed. Everyone was staring at Fayth like she was a nut, which was really nothing new for her. She untangled herself from the Ashton and stood.
Her father had an amused smile on his face and was trying to hide it. "I'm glad to see you have met your new housemate Cade Ashton." She heard Everyone gasped at the word 'Ashton'. Fayth's gaze landed on Cade, assessing the situation.
"Are we being punk'd?" Stepmother Claire asked. Fayth knew Claire wasn't as simple or clueless as she let everyone believe. She knew Claire was hiding something.
"No, we aren't. Alan and Cade are going to live here while their house gets refurbished," Carl informed them. Now Mr. Day was getting the 'you're-crazy' looks. Fayth was only too happy to pass them off, but she would have rather have given them to Cade.
Admittedly, Cade was hot. Well, better than hot. More like a sex god. No wonder he dated models. They were probably the only humans that came near to his beauty. He was cocky, which was to be expected. Fayth knew immediately that the player wanted to play a few games with her before this little stay ended. If he wanted to play games, he could bring it on. She could play them just as well. Her life was starting to get a little too boring for her despite the cheating boyfriend, wicked stepsister, evil stepmother, plotting father, and matchmaker mother. A girl needed more in her life than that if she wasn't driven insane first. Too bad the people were more complex than Fayth would ever realize.
"Fayth and Abe Carl's secondhand man, please follow me to my office." Carl Day instructed. The five were escorted the five into his Carl's office. Fayth loved her father's gay secondhand man. Tonight, Abe was dressed in an outrageous Hawaiian t-shirt and dress pants. He had not obeyed the formal dress code Claire Day had set forth because he, like Fayth, instinctively did not like the new Mrs. Carl Day. Besides that, he was very spontaneous, fun-loving, and extreme.
"We don't need to concern ourselves, Erica. They are discussing men's business," the old fashioned Claire remarked. Fayth ignored the insult that was directed at her and entered her father's office.
"This is for publicity, correct?" Fayth asked as she took a seat. She felt like there was another presence in the room, but she didn't bother to examine her surroundings. It was dark and gave the setting of a creepy office where a bad guy meeting would take place.
"Yes. Once again, Fayth, may I suggest that you take up modeling for the company?" Carl Day said.
Carl and Abe had cooked up some crazy scheme that if they had Fayth model for the Day Fashion like Cade had started to do for the Ashton's, they would bring in loads of money. Despite her dramatic flare, Fayth hated cameras ever since an incident involving a photographer and did not like the spotlight despite her dramatic flare. Carl and Abe had it in their heads that they required Fayth to model for the company.
"As I have said a hundred times, I will model for Day Fashion the day you wear high heels and a dress and Abe wears a hula skirt and coconut bra." Fayth's usual patient response came to her lips again.
She tried to refrain from laughing at the image of a powerful business tycoon dressed in a dress and high heels. Abe pretended not to notice the slight smile forming on his boss's lips.
"My daughter has a strange sense of humor," Carl said with a sigh. "Alan and I have decided that the Ashtons living with us for a temporary period would be the best publicity scheme we could cook up for both companies."
"What does Grandmother Day think of this?" Fayth asked. Her grandmother could be quite a character, and her hatred for the Ashton family was well known. She was a formidable person.
"Mother is on vacation in the Tropics for now so we have nothing to worry about," Carl stated.
Fayth laughed. "Until she hears from one of her cronies, comes back here, and turns you over on her knee to spank your butt," she remarked honestly. Carl nodded because he knew it was true. He could be quite a wimp when it came to his mother, but so could just about every person on the planet who ever met Ms. Adeline Day.
Fayth's beeper went off. She was part of Med Corps, a program similar to the Peace Corps. They went to deprived, third-world countries offering medical support and also offered medical programs in America. She flew off to different countries to help out there during different times. It was a very hands-on program and where students, doctors, nurses, and others could assist in helping out in different aspects of the medical field. It was a great opportunity and required a heck of a lot of work and dedication. She had been called on more than once to find a cure for certain infections, diseases, pathogens, etc. Members of the Med Corps always knew they were going to be called in to save the day.
Right now Fayth's team was trying to find the crazy person who was killing people and threatening one of the Med Corps' own—Fayth's mom, Dr. Sandy Carmichael. The serial killer would by torch buildings and set off bombs. Then he would call the Med Corps' office and report want had he done to mock them. about how many lives they could save if they would have arrived in time. Yes, he was that insane. Of course, her dad or anyone outside of the Med Corps team did not know this. They just thought a run-of-the-mill crazy person was running around their city hurting random people.
"I really must go," Fayth remarked when Carl gave her a disapproving look. "Dad, it's an emergency."
He sighed and motioned for her to stay. Immediately she took concern because of the tired look in his eyes.
"Fayth, do you remember Uncle Davis?" her father asked.
"The uncle who wore the bright plaid patterned shirt, danced with fire, and called me 'fat one' in Swahili because his Swahili was so bad?" Fayth asked in confusion. She couldn't remember or distinguish her uncles, who rarely visited.
"Oh, the CIA guy," she recalled nonchalantly. She had mastered the art of acting unaffected years ago.
Med Corps was a tough place to grow up.
Someone choked in the shadows, disturbed by her knowledge. Fayth turned around to see a man half masked by the darkness. He was striking, in an intense, incredibly dangerous way. His eyes, blue with golden flecks, regarded her with suspicion.
"How do you know Davis was CIA? Did you tell anyone? Do you know what the consequences of sharing that information with anyone would have on Davis's life?" the dark figure did not reach out of the shadowed area when he interrogated her angrily. The minute he reached into a barely reached the light, he jerked back as if it stung.
"I would never tell anyone. No one told me. It was kind of obvious with the dark clothing, shades, and mysterious persona. What is the American saying? 'I wasn't born yesterday.' I knew not to tell anyone," Fayth said challengingly to a man that knew how to kill her in a second and dispose of her body so it would never be found.
"Davis's cover was blown and some pretty bad people killed him. He left everything to you in his will. Now those bad people think you have something Davis had, and they want it horribly," Carl Day confessed.
Why would a family member I've only met twice leave everything to me? Fayth thought.
"They would kill you to get it," the figure who was late Davis's former partner-turned-bodyguard Carter Mitchell stated bluntly. He had no affection towards the girl sitting before him. At the moment he hated her for his physical attraction he was feeling towards her. He had tried to denounce those urges long ago.
"Fayth, this is Carter Mitchell. He was Davis's partner, and now he is your bodyguard until they find who killed Davis," Carl Day told his daughter in a tone that left no room for argument. He knew Fayth would protest strongly against a bodyguard. She didn't like the idea of putting someone's life in danger to save her own or the thought of being followed around everywhere.
Carter stepped out of the darkness. The man had a scar running down his cheek, an incredible amount of height, dark skin, and a five o'clock shadow. He looked positively lethal. Fayth could imagine him able to break her into two pieces without blinking, but he was hot, too. He appeared to be more comfortable in the dark because he didn't want anybody to see his scar.
Fayth leaned back in her chair and sighed. "There is no point in arguing," she stated.
The question was: who was she going to fantasize about tonight: the bodyguard, the sworn enemy, or a glazed donut?
Ah, definitely the glazed donut. She hadn't had one in a long time. I guess I do miss America.
Character Chart (Contains Foreshadowing Clues)
Fayth Day: a girl that was dangerous to men's hearts whether she was aware of it or not. She had a sort of a charismatic effect on most people that drew them to her. Sometimes it was a good thing, but more than often it was not. She was random and perfectly capable of defending herself whether people wanted to realize it or not.
Cade Ashton: a high society future businessman that will do anything for the sake of a buck or the business. He seemed like the perfect guy even though he had an ego. Lover of challenges, he thought of winning Fayth as a challenge. Is he doing it for the business or for love?
Carter Mitchell: It isn't a well known fact that the owner of a well-known security business is also has other interests. Our angry guard of Fayth's safety quit the CIA for a reason, but he owned loyalties to Fayth's uncle since he saved his life. What happens when money hungry people discover the bodyguard with a past was a billionaire?
Lee Michaels: He is concerned for Fayth. He seemed like the big brother and protector of Fayth. He was one of the rare people Fayth trusted completely. Sadly he was too good to be true. He had to have some faults.
Adonis Standon: a scarred and scared prince that fell deeply in love with Fayth, but he made a mistake that caused her to abandon the notions of ever loving anyone. Are his attentions of winning Fayth back true or does he have an ulterior motive?
Claire Day: Fayth's new stepmother is trying to be as mean as possible to her. Is that because she wants Fayth to hate her or is she trying to protect her by creating distance between her? And why would she have to protect Fayth if she was trying to do so?
Erica Clinton: At first glance, she seems to be like your average sinisterly wicked stepsister. Perhaps she has a good reason to have a vendetta against Fayth even if it was only in her mind or for real.
Abe Dalton: the secondhand man to Fayth's father. Fayth and her father trust him completely and consider him family. He was keeping secrets. Could those secrets hurt Fayth and her dad?
Author's Note: (07/10/07) I did some improving. Added some detail, etc. To make it a little better than the original revision of the chapter.
Please be kind enough to review and tell me if you want to see more of this story so I will update. Otherwise I won't update for a long time. I like to hear people want to see more of my story before I continue it so I know if my introduction is good or not.
Thank you to my lovely reviewers:
Kendyl Burch : found.eventually : Wayward Ballerina : sir write alot : Iccle Fairy : the1theonlyshinchan : FallenHero: YuudaiPrincess : Daenerys : Kristie Marie
And a special thanks to HanglidersWing happens to be the reason I re-edited this chapter. I didn't do much to this chapter, but I'm going to do a lot more editing in the second one and so on.
26.03.08- Thanks to GRAYTEXT for being a beta!