Azure Fen’s gaze fell on Nola’s timid form. Seeing her in person and not in the realm of dreams, made him incredibly excited. Nevertheless, he had to quell his excitement and regard her with an air of professionalism.
Now that he was in his human disguise, he would have to make sure that other humans within the vicinity didn’t recognize his true form. Azereth smiled and offered a hand to the woman.
“It’s a pleasure to see you, Nola,” Azereth said, feeling her shiver at his touch before he shook it. No doubt the mark he left on her shoulder left her feeling hot and bothered upon seeing him. It would be fun to see her squirm during a contract signing.
“Follow me, we’ll have the signing at the conference room,” he said and walked around his desk, slowly making his way towards her as he rested a hand on the small of her back.
He guided her down to a pair of glass sliding doors at the left side of his room. After switching on the lights, he then walked her towards the seat right next to the director’s chair. After making sure she was comfortable, he then took a seat and tapped on the smooth wooden surface with a finger.
“Open the drawer beneath you. You’ll find a copy of your contract,” he said and opened his own drawer. He pulled out a thick copy and a pen, waiting for Nola to do the same.
“Read through the terms and conditions carefully. Take your time. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask,” he said, boring his eyes into hers.
“Yes mast—sir,” she stuttered. Azereth pretended not to hear her slip of the tongue. Her cheeks reddened and she read the contract in complete silence.
How cute, he thought and clicked his pen. Despite seeing him in the flesh, she still couldn’t bring herself to call him by his preferred title or look at him directly in the eye.
Whatever the case, he certainly made it a point to make the contract as tempting as possible. Humans were deceptively simple when it came to money and status. While Nola was also human, Azereth knew from her dreams that she didn’t care much about money, more so, she just wants to be useful.
Yes, useful. She was alone and she had been alone for a long time. With no one to care for her and no lover to warm her bed, she was just ripe for the picking. A lonely girl. Every second they spent in close proximity would be sweet torture for his meal. His supernatural hearing picked up on the reverberating thumps of her heart, the sound of her shallow breathing, and her nervous cues.
“Cute,” he said softly, knowing full well she heard him.
“Sir?” Nola looked up; her innocent eyes boring into his own.
“Any questions?” he asked, refusing to acknowledge what he said earlier.
She shook her head. “Not yet, please let me continue.” She gave him a shy smile and went back to reading.
Azereth smiled and rested an elbow on the table. He didn’t need to read the contract. He pretty much compelled a lawyer to make it as iron-clad as possible and with a little bit of magic, he made sure that such an agreement would be completely ironclad.
Nola sighed. She raised her gaze and looked at Azereth.
“I really think the amount is too much,” she told him honestly. “The only other job I have is freelance work and while I appreciate the generous offer, I really think this should go to someone else.”
Azereth frowned. “Do you require more?”
“No!” Nola shook her head, eyes widened. “No, not at all. If anything, I think the best for me would be . . . half of this,” she admitted and played with her pen, mulling over her words. “I live alone in an apartment at a pretty quiet neighborhood. I don’t really have plans to move out soon, and I’m pretty much all by myself. This kind of amount is for experts, and I’m pretty much a novice.”
Azereth shook his head. Typical, the interviewee before her wanted more and Nola herself wanted less. Lucas was talented, sure, and he had way more experience than Nola but he was an arrogant prick and Azereth hoped his blonde secretary, Gretchen, had knocked his ego down a peg or two.
“Just because you live humbly, doesn’t mean you don’t deserve a few extra,” Azereth reasoned with her. “You can use the money to go on vacation, maybe get a pet, or save it for a rainy day. You have to think of your future, Nola,” he said gently. “Money is not the end-all-be-all. What’s important is that once you had all your basic needs taken care of, you can finally look for your purpose.”
Nola’s eyes widened. “My purpose?”
“Yes,” Azereth said. “If you aren’t sure what you’re meant to do, consider working here to see if you’ll figure it out,” he suggested. “I’d be happy to be your mentor if it will help you.”
Nola’s lips parted. A look of recognition crossed her features at the word, “mentor” and Azereth knew he just jolted a very vivid dream of hers from earlier. The memory of her receiving his mark was now fresh in her mind and as she examined his face, Azure gave her a wink.
“Any questions, pet?” he purred, leaning closer to her.
Nola gasped. Without another word, she raised a hand and gently pulled down the sleeve of her blouse. Right on her shoulder was his mark—red and purple—on her soft and delectable skin.
“Master?” Nola’s eyes watered, and Azereth knew she finally recognized him.
He reached over and placed a finger under her chin.