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Sophia Walker is a determined young woman who faced countless adversities to survive. Abandoned in an orphanage at an early age, she struggled to support herself by waiting tables in a coffee shop. However, fate has an unexpected twist in store for her. During one of the days of her hard work, Sophia crosses paths with the enigmatic Dominic Salvatore, a man who, at first glance, appears to be just another customer. However, fate has other plans for Sophia. Dominic, a ruthless mobster who spares no effort to get what he wants, becomes obsessed by her beauty and proposes a dangerous contract. Sophia is then drawn into Dominic's criminal underworld, where the line between survival and dangerous passion becomes blurred.

Chapter 1


The insistent alarm clock pulled me out of my dreams, reminding me that I needed to rush to the cafe as quickly as possible. I opened the door of the trailer bathroom where I lived and brushed my teeth quickly. I really wanted to have a cup of coffee to wake me up, but time was running out since the bus stop was far away.

My body exuded exhaustion; after all, my job required me to clean all the tables before leaving and to leave the space where I worked spotless. Yet, it never seemed to be enough.

I put on my coat, hastily threw on some clothes, and hurried out. Just as I stepped outside, Gabriel was standing at the trailer's door. He was the owner of the place, and I had to pay rent, of course. Believe me, it was the cheapest option I had managed to find in New York.

"Sophia. Good morning, first of all," he said with a faint smile, though I knew his visit wasn't purely friendly.

"Hi, Gabriel," I replied, feeling uncomfortable because I knew his visit was related to the rent.

"The rent, Sophia," Gabriel spoke with a serious expression, as if he already knew the answer.

I sighed, feeling the weight of the situation. The rent was overdue, and I had no idea how I would come up with the money in time. My job as a waitress barely covered my basic expenses, and the bills were piling up frighteningly.

"I know, Gabriel. Things have been tough lately, but I promise I'll get everything sorted out. I just need a little more time."

He looked at me for a moment, as if evaluating my words. Gabriel was a middle-aged man, with a hardened expression from life. He also knew that I was one of the most reliable tenants he had, but money was money.

"Sophia, you know I have my own expenses to cover, and I can't wait indefinitely," he finally said, with a softer tone. "I'll give you one more week, but that's the maximum I can do."

I mentally thanked him for this small concession, even though it wouldn't completely solve my problem. I promised myself that I would do everything I could to find a way to pay the overdue rent and prevent Gabriel from taking more drastic measures. I had nowhere else to go.

"Thank you, Gabriel, and forgive me. I will figure this out, I promise."

He nodded and walked away, leaving me with the burden of financial responsibility on my shoulders. I knew I needed to give my best at the cafe to gather the necessary money. So, with one last sigh, I continued my way to work, hoping the day wouldn't be as tough as it seemed to promise.

Tears threatened to well up in my eyes, but I held them back with determination. I couldn't afford to cry at that moment; every workday was crucial for my survival. I was exhausted and just wanted to lie down, but I was determined to find another job.

I was an orphan. My mother passed away when I was just six years old, and as for my father... Well, I knew very little about him. His last name was Walker, the same as mine, but I had no more information. Growing up in the orphanage was a terrible experience I wouldn't wish on anyone. I could barely remember my mother; there comes a point when you're so calloused that the good memories simply fade away.

The only thing she left me was a small locket, a worn-out memento of her presence.

Growing up there taught me to be strong and independent. I learned not to depend on anyone and to face life's challenges with determination. The job at the cafe was just another chapter in my struggle for survival.

As I walked towards work that morning, I remembered my mother fondly, even though her features and voice were slowly fading from my memory. The promise I made to myself that morning was that I wouldn't give up, no matter how hard life might be.

I wondered what I had done so wrong to end up living like this.

I arrived at work, and the manager, the always grumpy Mrs. Rodriguez, was already ready to chastise me. I sighed tiredly, but I knew that the little they paid there was all I had to survive on. With a forced smile on my face, I grabbed my notepad and pen, ready for another busy day.

"Come on, girl, there's no time for slacking; clean these tables. We have important customers, or do you think this is the dump where you should live?" Mrs. Rodriguez's words were as sharp as ever, and I had to restrain myself from cursing her out.

While jotting down orders from the tables, I moved quickly between the customers, trying to ensure everyone was served as best as possible. The cafe was packed, and the pressure was constant. It was hard work, but it was what I had to do to pay the rent and put food on the table.

Suddenly, the doorbell rang, announcing the entrance of a majestic man. His blue eyes were like the sky, and his black suit was impeccable. He exuded an aura of wealth and power. However, I didn't have time to admire attractive customers. I continued to take orders and rush around.

It was during a moment of stress, as I balanced a tray full of coffees and pastries, that I accidentally bumped into the man. A cup of hot coffee threatened to spill, but he agilely caught it in mid-air, avoiding an impending disaster.

"Sorry, really sorry. I was distracted, please forgive me," my cheeks flushed with embarrassment as I hurriedly apologized.

The man just smiled, a smile that seemed to hide something deeper. His blue eyes met mine for a brief moment before he gracefully stepped away and took a seat at a nearby table. I breathed a sigh of relief, but something told me that this encounter wasn't just a casual coincidence.

I continued to serve my orders as usual, until the man called me over to his table.

"Ragazza," judging by his accent, he was Italian. "I want a cappuccino."

His eyes continued to stare at me, and I felt embarrassed and disconcerted. It was as if he could see through me, as if he knew about my deepest problems and secrets. I stood still for a moment, but then rushed to take the order.

"Of course, a cappuccino. Right away," my voice quivered slightly, but I was determined to keep my composure.

Chapter 2

The smell of fresh coffee filled the air as I prepared the cappuccino for the mysterious man. Steam rose from the cup, creating a fragrant cloud around me. When I served the drink at his table, he thanked me with an enigmatic smile, and to my surprise, he slid a generous tip in my direction. I looked at the money, and my heart skipped a beat. It was a hundred dollars, an amount I had never received as a tip in my entire life as a waitress.

To be honest, I didn't even receive one.

"Wait, this is too much, I..." I began to protest, but he simply gestured for me to accept.

"A gift for the beautiful waitress," he said in a deep voice, accentuated by his Italian accent.

I was stunned, speechless, as he turned his attention back to the cappuccino. What was happening here? Why had he given me such a generous tip? I could hardly believe it, but one thing was certain: that man was becoming increasingly myster


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