Seduced By The Billionaire
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Having his undivided attention is unnerving. I take a deep breath, move a little then start belting out lyrics. Since he is completely focused on me, I follow suit. I watch him the whole time as I sing. Soon, the mood in the room becomes romantic. Our gazes are locked as I sing and he watches. It feels almost surreal, as if enchanted, and it makes me give my all. I lose control of myself at some point and find myself drawing closer to him. His intense gaze is still on, his eyes have become darker and I find that I'm enjoying too much. I move on to the second song without stopping. Its only when I finish that my senses return to me and I walk back to where I started from. Mason doesn't say a thing. "What do you think?" I ask him. "Good," he says with a slight nod. "You can go now. Your payment will be sent to your boss." What? Just like that? I wanted to vocalise my thoughts but decide against it. I'm mad but I pick up my purse and storm out of there. I hate that I gave him the performance of my life, and that was all he said.... *** In which a billionaire is determined to have a beautiful musician to himself by all means.
Jenny slid into the room and did a twirl in front of everyone, her costume swirling around her lithe body.
“Are you ready, girls?” She asked with a wide smile on her face.
“Yes!!” the small room erupted in loud cheer as my colleagues stood up.
I managed a small smile, and glanced at the ecstatic faces. I wished I could be like them, happy and excited. Instead I was a nervous wreck, constantly twisting the ring on my middle finger.
Jenny had been helping me to manage my stage fright since I joined the group, but I had not made much progress. She said I was the best singer which was why she stuck me as a main lead for the upcoming gig. As if being the main lead was not scary enough, we were going to perform in some rich drug lord's mansion.
Officially, he ran a tech business but many people thought it's just a front for money laundering. Most of the world knew that Mason Steele was a tech billionaire who was as ruthless as they came. There were even rumors that he had killed people.
Dancers and singers who had ever performed at his house said he could make you cry if he didn't like what you were doing so everyone had to aim for perfection. He wanted nothing but perfection. It had been said that he occasionally choose women from the performers and pursued them. Not that they complained. He was rich and handsome, a dream boyfriend for many.
Except me. Knowing that I was not beautiful enough to capture his attention was a good thing. The only problem was that if I messed up, I'd capture his negative attention and who knew what the punishment for that would be. Our performance was tricky because we had to sing and dance at the same time. If it was one or the other, I wouldn't have been so worried about messing up.
Deep within, I had a feeling that something would go wrong on that day. I wondered if those were my instincts warning me or it was just anxiety.
Jenny made her way to me. She was a thirty-five year old woman who looked twenty five because of her baby face, soft skin and great figure, but was tough as nails. “You seem pretty much shaken. April, you have to be strong.”
“How can I be strong when I'm about to be handed over to the wolves?” I wanted to say. Instead, I only rolled my eyes at her fake concern. She knew my condition and yet she gave me the lead role.
“I'll be alright,” I told her. “Just nerves, I guess.”
“Okay, whatever this is, you need to sort it out because the limo is already here. I'll get you some tea when we get there. We can't afford to mess this up because Mason hates sloppy performances.”
“You're not helping.”
“I'm beginning to regret choosing you. But, you know what, it's alright. If you can't get your act together, we shall have to perform an older song led by Kara.”
The last thing I wanted was for Kara to take my place and she knew it. This was my first time taking the lead and I needed it more than anything. It was a great step for my career.
Jenny turned away from me. “Girls, carry all your things. The limo is already out waiting.”
Taking a deep breath, I rose, and went to take one last look at myself in the mirror. Blue eyes surrounded by black eyeliner and mascara stared back, then studied the smooth skin and red lips and shiny black curls falling by the sides of my face. The makeup still looked good. The artiste wanted to create a sharp contrast of midnight black and crimson red to match my dark hair and red dress. I was always more on the cute side due to my cheeks but this hard look made me look sexy and gave me way more confidence that I thought was possible.
“I can't wait to see you freeze on that stage,” Kara Rodriguez, my arch nemesis said as she ruffled my hair and smiled at herself in the mirror. She pulled out a tube of red lipstick from her purse and reapplied it on her plump lips. Kara was beautiful, the prettiest among us all, but she was also the most evil one.
Due to all the venom she spat out, sometimes I wondered if she a vampire whose fangs were always waiting to come out. She had made my life a living hell since I joined the group and I would have quit if I could easily get another job. I hoped to get the freedom I wanted some day but meanwhile I was stuck with the devil.
“It won't happen,” I grabbed her hand and pushed it off my head. Somehow her words had given me a rush of confidence. I wanted to prove that I deserved my place in that band. “Everyone is going to be mesmerized.” I said before walking out of the room, heels clicking against the marble floor.
It was my second time sitting in a limo. It was spacious but a bit overwhelming because of the different perfumes the occupants were wearing. Five minutes later, the limo set off, cruising down the Miami city street. While the others chattered away, I practicing the song in my head. We have had a lot of time to practice but I was too nervous to focus on anything else.
Soon we reached the residence. Everyone turned to look out and voiced their admiration for the mansion. It is getting dark and lights had already been turned on.
“Wow,” Olivia said, staring at the beautiful two storied mansion. The large gate we had just entered through opened into a long driveway, shaded by beautiful trees. The grand building was built in European style with arched doorways, a huge motor court in the front. There was a two story guest house beside the mansion big enough to have roughly two bedrooms and kitchen.
A woman dressed in a black pant suit came to meet us. “Welcome everyone, I'll show you to your preparation room. Before we go, I have to tell you the rules. You are not allowed to loiter around the house on your own. There is a restroom next to the room you have been assigned therefore you don't have to go anywhere. When the guests are ready for your performance, you will be invited to the back gardens where the event will be hosted.
The sound guys are already present and your leader is the only one allowed to move out and talk to them. You'll be given snacks and drinks. After your performance, you'll have dinner with the guests.”
The rules didn't sound hard to follow. As we followed the lady, I wondered where Mason Steele was. Was he in one of his rooms making evil plans with his partners? The rumors about him being in the drug business seem solid but then again they were rumors so I didn't know if they should be believed or not.
We walked through the arched doorway in awe. The inside of the house was even more glorious than the outside. A large white staircase greeted us, with two sets of stairs. Under the landing was a table with a vase full of fresh flowers.
The chandelier was white in color with bits of gold. Long grey pillars supported the large staircase from underneath. I followed the lady, climbing up the stairs on the left. Some of the girls were about to use the right side but the appearance of an elegant couple set to use it made them turn back. The rest of us snickered.
The lady and gentleman descended the stairs like royalty while we climbed up. Have they been in a meeting with Mason, I wondered. The lady with us doesn't say a word about them.
The room we found ourselves in had everything we needed. There was a mirror on the wall, two couches and a large table perfect for our makeup. There was a small fridge. I dumped my bag on the floor and sat on the couch.
“No sitting,” Jenny said. “We have to practice.”
Everyone groaned while standing. We did two rounds of the dance routine and then sat down to wait while Jenny went downstairs.
An hour later, Jenny opened the door.
“It's time,” she said.
My heart started thumping hard against my chest. I was about to come to face with one of the most feared men in Miami.
We were in the foyer when I remembered that I had left my ear monitor in the room.
“Shit,” I told my roommate. “I forgot my ear monitor.”
“Go back for it, but don’t let Jenny see you. Make sure to return before we go on stage.”
I waited for Jenny to go through the door and quickly ran up the stairs. I was walking along the hallway when I saw two men walking in my direction. My heart skipped a beat when I recognized one of them. Mason Steele, the host of the party.
The most handsome man I had ever seen was wearing a dark blue suit and strolling casually along the hallway. My heartbeat skyrocketed as I wondered whether to return or continue. Well, he has already seen me so it was better to get on with it.
I stopped moving as they drew closer.
“Good evening, gentlemen.” I said not quite meeting their eyes.
“Who are you?” It was Mason who spoke. His voice was laced with authority.
I managed to snatch a look at his perfect face. His perfe
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