Chapter 7 - A Bodyguarding Gig
“Doesn’t sound too appealing, huh? That’s how we feel, too.” Mark’s voice had trickled into Josh’s ears from beyond his cloudy headspace. When Josh had finally forced himself to exhale, Mark had continued, “It’s actually been about a week since we got this offer, but I was thinking about turning it down because I expected nobody to want to do it. Oh, but the contract terms are really something. It’s not often that you get this much compensation… But after all, Miller cashes out like mad.”
‘All he has is money and looks, so yeah, you bet. If only he were like 10 percent as kind as he was pretty, everyone would praise him like God,’ Josh had scorned internally, remembering the joke of the street that God must have put all his effort into making Chase Miller’s body and just screwed the personality out of exhaustion.
When Josh kept silent, Mark had scratched his head vigorously. “But, well, you know… The work is a bit… Yeah. And that Miller b*stard is real tricky to appease. I guess we’ve got nothing to say if that pay rate was offered with all of that in consideration. Otherwise, why would he be contacting us all the way from the west coast? All of them over there must have turned him down. Money’s good stuff, but Miller of all people… I did contemplate on at least asking y’all about it since the payment was so good. But since you told me that you’re in need of money and fast… The other work won’t do you much good since the payment is down the ditch. If you accept the gig, the others might have an easier time making a decision, too.”
Josh had taken a deep breath before asking, “Did you let all the other members of our team know as well?”
“I called all of them about it before I got here. Just the overall gist of it. They said they’d think about it.”
Josh clearly remembered everyone cursing through their teeth when they had last taken Chase Miller’s gig. Their receptiveness was both unexpected and remarkable.
‘Did something urgent come up for everyone else as well?’ wondered Josh.
As Josh fell silent once again, Mark had added, “It will be about six months if things get stretched out, and three months if not. If it happens to get extended, they’ll pay you more accordingly. Well… think about it if you’re really in a pinch. The entire team will be going if it gets settled, of course, so don’t feel too pressured.” Before taking his leave, he repeated, “Think about it.”
* * *
Since then, Josh had been hopping between options, unable to decide what to do.
Why did it have to be that man of all people?
The answer was obvious. There weren’t many people who were willing to pay such a large sum of money to hire bodyguards. Moreover, Josh desperately needed the money that was rotting in Chase Miller’s safe. Unfortunately, that was what reality looked like. No matter how long he contemplated for, the outcome was already decided.
As the sky hazily began to light back up, he finally managed to accept the one and only answer. It would just be six months at most. Once his contract period was over, he would refuse to extend it under any circumstances. He expected Mark to replace however many hands he needed after that.
Josh waited until Mark’s reporting hour to call and asked what he was most curious about. “Did anyone else get back to you? How many people are confirmed to join?”
‘There’s no way that they all refused, right?’ thought Josh as chills ran down his spine.
To his relief, Mark replied promptly, “Me, Seth, Henry, Isaac—four.”
That was everyone other than Josh. As Josh’s shoulders relaxed into a slump, Mark added, “That Henry, apparently he gambled his money away again. I heard he lost everything.”
He also continued by telling Josh that Seth’s contemplation ended when he heard the pay, and that Isaac had lent Henry money which Henry had lost, leaving him with no choice but to join. “Henry even poured Isaac’s money into the gambling pot. In any case, Isaac’s also partly responsible for being convinced by Henry’s sweet talk.”
Josh knew that it probably wasn’t just sweet talk; there was likely some threatening involved as well. This wasn’t the first time Isaac’s wallet had been shaken empty after losing to Henry’s vulgarities and threats.
In any case, this worked in Josh’s favor.
Josh sighed bitterly and said, “I’ll come, too.”
“All right, five including Joshua.” The way he articulated Josh’s name made it apparent that he was jotting down the name. He must have already been expecting Josh’s answer; he didn’t seem too surprised or overjoyed. Unfortunately, it was an unavoidable decision for Josh, too.
Josh asked about a few important details like the date of departure, and they ended the call after concluding that the detailed contract would be sent over email. As long as he was paid the promised amount promptly, Josh really didn’t care at all about the details of the contract.
After the decision was made, everything else followed suit. Josh called his sister right away and let her know that she didn’t need to worry about the money since he had gotten some new work. Thankfully, his work was about three to four hours away from where his mother and his sister lived. It seemed like he could leave the boy in their care and visit him every day he had off.
“Don’t worry about Pete, Josh. Mom’s also ecstatic to have Pete here,” Emma said in a livelier voice.
When Josh hung up, a sigh escaped his mouth. With this, the biggest issue was resolved.
‘There’s no way that man could find out about Pete, right?’ Josh thought to himself.
Josh became gravely buried in his thoughts. If the truth were to surface, he couldn’t even imagine the aftermath. If he wanted to open up about it, he should have done so when he first knew that he was pregnant. It didn’t make sense at all for him to confess now after all this time. How disturbing would it be to have his child suddenly appear before his eyes one day?
Hiding it wasn’t difficult. Just like everyone else, he would also think that Josh was a beta. Moreover, he would never even glance at a lowly bodyguard.
‘After all,’ thought Josh, ‘he doesn’t even remember imprinting me and sleeping with me.’
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