Hi, I'm Meghan and my current alter ego is the Irish chef and CEO of Murdoch Enterprises Inc., Leland Murdoch. I love reviews. I squeal with delight when I see that I have them. I know people are looking at it because we can see how many views we have on each of our chapters. c: so please, leave reviews if you take the time to read through our story. Like Christine said, it does get good. You'll be introduced to some LOVELY new characters in the upcoming chapters and we hope you love them as much as we do. We love all of your readers 3. Ciao.
Chef By Trade
"Anja, where's my-"
She stuck the papers in my face and waved them around.
"They're right here, Herr Murdoch. I told you they were on your desk fifteen minutes ago. The menus and the dates are finalized. The charity event is tomorrow evening at The Fortress at 7 p.m. You are to be there at 5:30 for preparations and you're scheduled to work at Apollo's tonight in…fifteen minutes", she leaned against the doorway to my office and checked her fingernails as she talked. Her bleach blonde hair was short and cut at a sharp angle that framed her slender face perfectly. The skull tattoo on her neck was clearly visible and I smirked at it. She knew I had rules about these things, but she chose to thoroughly ignore them; one of the reasons I liked her. Anja Bashe was a damn near perfect assistant. I stood up from my desk and nodded at her, picking up my coat and briefcase.
"I guess I'll be leaving now then, Miss Bashe", she rolled her eyes at me and returned to her desk. She always chose to wear the edgiest clothing. The swirling lines that were tattooed across the side of her face spoke more loudly than her words. She was quick and concise; did the job well as I advised her to. She also got me coffee when I wanted it. She made her way back to the desk and turned her attention to the incoming call that showed on the wall display. It was Janna Khari. She was a small invester in the company and had made her investment in The Reef when it first opened.
"You'd better tell Marcus that you're leaving or else he might flip his shit again. Murdoch Restaurants Incorporated, how many I-", she muttered as she answered the ringing phone. "Herr Murd-"
"Take a message. Tell Janna I'll get back to her as soon as I can", I walked into Marcus' office and knocked on his door. He looked up from whatever documents he was going over and smiled at me. His black hair was swept to the side and "gelled to perfection" as he liked to call it. Marcus was my best friend and advisor of Murdoch Restaurants Incorporated.
"Leaving so soon, Leland?", he folded his glasses and placed them parallel to the papers on his desk. Always so incredibly neat.
"Yes, Apollo's is waiting for me", a slow smile stretched across my cheeks and I couldn't keep the excitement contained much longer. Cooking was what fueled me…and owning three restaurants allowed me to do so.
"Well, get out of here then!" He chuckled and put his glasses back on, shooing me out of his office. "I'll see you at home." I left quickly and headed out into the streets of Pangaea waving down a gridder as fast as possible. I got inside quickly and instructed the driver to take me to Apollo's. The driver smirked and put on the gas, speeding through the city until we reached Dawn Boulevard. We drove three blocks down and Apollo's was seated quaintly on the corner of Dawn and Center. I paid the gridder and hopped out, rushing in through the back entrance and to the bathroom.
Once inside, I relaxed. The white washed bathroom walls were all too familiar and brought back memories of when I first designed the restaurant about a year and a half ago. Apollo's was a greek restaurant, made in commemoration of my adopted brother: Iason. He lived back in Ireland with my parents and was currently nine years old. The restaurant was given worn wallpaper and the chairs were black wood imported from Greece. The tables were black and covered with an ivory tablecloth. The waiters wore white button ups and black dress pants along with shoes approved by the manager. Yes, we had waiters despite the fact that the world was propelling forward into the service of the newly invented AI Robot Models. Everything was crisp, clean and perfect. Greek music played softly in the background as people settled in to eat their genuine Greek meal. I'd spent two weeks in Greece simply studying how to cook Greek style food for this restaurant only. I wanted to make sure it was perfect.
Occasionally, I would hire musicians to come and play live music during their dinners, but that was only when Marcus could convince me to do so. The top floor of Apollo's was my current magnum opus. It was completely made of the glass/steel bi-product that was developed by some German chemist in the last twenty years. Most of the buildings in Pangaea were made of this. The Glass Dining Room overlooked the Pangaea skyline and had a fantastic view of Lake Oxida just outside the city. It was normally rented out by wealthy businessman or sometimes even used as a dance hall.
Tonight, it was rented to a man by the name of Ian Hawke; a friend and business partner. He hired me to cater his charity event in the night to come and I was all too pleased to oblige. How could I say no? He did own part of my company.
I examined myself in the mirror and pulled my black bandana out of my bag, tying it around my forehead. I waved my hand underneath the faucet and lukewarm water, attuned to my favorite temperature, came out immediately. I washed my hands and then splashed my face.
"Tonight's going to be a long night…" I whispered to myself, wiping off the water and leaving the bathroom. It was, but I was ready for it. After a long week in the office, no one really knows how much I need to cook.
My black chef clothing was put to good use on nights like these. The restaurant was overflowing with people and I couldn't wait to get to work. I went to my office quickly and set down my briefcase and dufflebag, before heading off toward the kitchen.
Dinner service had started an hour ago and several of the appetizers had already been served; the kitchen was moving onto eentres which meant it was my turn to cook on the meat station.
"Mr. Murdoch! What a surprise…I didn't know you'd be here", Pippa said. She was the appointed sous chef at Apollo's and she did a wonderful job. I smiled at her.
"Yes, Pippa and tonight is going to be…smashing", I smiled and raised my eyebrows as I said it. I pulled out my knife kit from its place on the wall.
"Smashing…" She smiled as she chopped a rack of lamb.
"Next order, Pippa?" I looked at her expectantly. She snapped out of her daze and whistled at Rocky; the sauce man. He was standing near the slips of paper that had the orders written down on them.
"One gyro and a side of couscous, egg lemon, and a kleftiko", he shouted at me. I immediately shouted to Andrea to get the couscous ready for Swift and I began to sear the meat that would go in the gyro.
"Five minutes out, Rocky. Is the sauce going to be ready?" I asked him. He nodded stirring around a mixture and tasting it. He brought his fingers to his lips and kissed them. Several more gyro orders racked in.
"Andrea, you're making the bread, right?" Swift called from his corner of the kitchen. He took care of sides. She answered yes and checked the oven for her bread.
"Thirty seconds to plating?" I called out.
"Swift, is the couscous ready?" Andrea asked him. He shook his head up and held up a finger, signaling he needed one more minute. I stirred the thinly sliced meat I'd cooked in the pan and covered it, sticking it in the oven. I pulled out three plates and set them in a row, adding a bowl to one of them for the egg lemon soup—Avgolemono.
"Couscous and egg lemon, ready."
"Kleft and gyro ready. Pita?"
"Plate it", I told them. I pulled my kleftiko and gyro strips from the oven and set them next to the plates, going over to the list of orders that waited. Several more read the same thing and I mentally prepared myself for a repetitive night of cooking. It had been almost an hour and I was in the zone. Nothing could disturb me. Except Axis.
"Sir, we have a customer that wants to see you. He's in the glass dining room", he muttered to me, distracting me from the swordfish that I was searing.
"Tell him I'm terribly busy, but I send my regards", I answered him, flipping the fish over to sear the other side.
"Well then tell him: Fuck you. I'll see you tomorrow night", I smirked to myself and added a little bit of salt to the fish.
"Are-are you sure?" He said almost timidly, scratching the side of his head.
"Yes, Axis. Now get the hell out of my kitchen", I rolled my eyes and looked at Swift, tapping my watch. Axis opened his mouth and then closed it before leaving me be.
I knew which order was Ian's too. He always ordered the Patitsio with tzatziki sauce on the side. It was a terrible flavor combination, but he insisted on it. Along with his order was an order of moussaka…perhaps he brought Lleida with him? I shrugged and continued my cooking until the last few orders were filled. The seventeen of us celebrated afterwards with a new bottle of wine, one I'd had Anja pick up earlier that day.
"You never cease to amaze me Mr. Murdoch-"
"For the thousandth time, call me Leland", I scolded Pippa and the rest of the crew. She smiled sheepishly and took another sip of her wine. Her hair was slightly matted to her forehead, but she was a longtime friend and co-worker. I'd hired her when I first opened the restaurant. Swift was another new edition and then he convinced me to hire Rocky.
"Tomorrow is the big charity event for The Reef, yes?" Rocky said, swirling around the liquid in his glass.
"It's not FOR The Reef. It's to benefit kids in Africa who are starving to death. I honestly think he's going to put the money into some local farming projects throughout villages", I answered.
"Africa? Why Africa?" Pippa asked. Her voice was as high as her name suggested. She was like a small mouse.
"I don't really know. Ian does with his money what he wishes."
"Like make it possible to open this restaurant?", Swift smirked. I punched him in the shoulder and shook my head.
"That smart mouth of you could get you fired", I said, snorting.
"Yeah, right", Swift shook his own head. I chewed on the side of my tongue because it was only so true; Swift was one of my best.
"Well, if Monica will take care of the sales today, I'll be off. Keep your tips. You worked hard for them", I nodded at them and headed off toward my office to grab my things. I quickly pulled off my bandana, now soaked with sweat, and shoved it into my bag along with my apron. I stepped out of the back of the restaurant walked up to the corner of Dawn and Center, flagging down a gridder. It came to a silent stop in front of me and I directed him to take me to my apartment on Fitzgatan and Duke. The driver nodded and sped off in the direction of my apartment. The city was just beginning to come alive, despite the fact that it was closing in on midnight. It was Friday. I paid the gridder handsomely and got out of the hover mobile and walked through the sheer glass doors of my apartment building.
It was floor to ceiling with grey marbled stone and the beautiful, black-haired receptionist waved at me with a wink, nodding toward the elevator on the ground floor that led up to my room. I slid my key card next to the elevator button and pushed it, stepping in and pushing floor 130. I waited patiently as the elevator ascended and opened into my room. Marcus was sitting on the leather sofa eating popcorn and he waved at me as I walked in and threw my stuff into the nearest chair.
"Welcome home, love!" He shouted at me with enthusiasm. It almost caught me off guard and I wrinkled my nose at his choice of words. I noticed Ann was next to him.
"Marcus. Ann", I nodded to them and headed toward my room.
Ann was Marcus' boyfriend. He dressed like a woman all the time. He always wore striped tights, pleated dresses and high heels. Not to mention make up. And a lot of it, but Marcus adored her…him. I wasn't really sure anymore.
I peeled off my chef attire and jumped into my bed wearing my boxers. Tomorrow was Ian's charity event and in order to direct a kitchen from a seated placemat at a table for four hours straight and then some…chefs needed their rest.