Chapter 28 - Negotiation
When I mustered up my courage and admitted having talked to Elisa, Keith didn’t say anything. Watching him cowering and burying his face in his hands made me instinctively want to ruffle his thick hair. I spaced out for a moment and didn’t understand what he had said. A moment later, I blinked as I finally snapped out of it and processed his words.
“I’d never seen girls fight like that.”
He sounded tired, but it merely turned out to be my imagination. When he violently ran his fingers through his hair and looked up, Keith’s face was tainted with irritation. He must have only paused to give himself time to suppress his emotions. I wanted to ask him what in the world had happened, but I held back. Telling myself that I would search for a news article later, I kept my curiosity at bay.
I calmly replied, “I saw it on multiple occasions.”
Keith stopped his hand from sweeping up his hair and looked up at me. “Girls fought over you?”
His expression of disbelief was extremely rude, but I nodded with a straight face.
“Yes. Very often.”
Of course, I didn’t tell him that those “girls” were my little sisters. I glanced toward his doubtful face and creased brows.
I added nonchalantly, “All I’m saying is that not just good-looking men like you experience such things, Mr. Pittman.”
To my surprise, Keith smiled. As I flinched at his unexpected reaction, he continued like it was nothing.
“Your looks aren’t half bad. I just didn’t think that you would be involved in any girl problems.”
“And why is that?” I asked, unable to hold back my curiosity.
He replied without hesitation, as if it were the most obvious thing in the world.
He must have thought that he had been so humorous and witty. I wanted to completely object, but instead, I regulated my breath.
I asked coldly, “Is indecency supposed to be fun?”
“Gotta enjoy what you can enjoy.”
I took comfort in the fact that he at least didn’t deny that he was indecent. Instead, I chose a different question.
“You’re an only son, aren’t you, Mr. Pittman?”
Keith looked up. “What does it matter?”
He subtly avoided the question, but I didn’t notice. It would be meaningless to lecture him about the responsibility of an eldest son, anyway. I shook my head.
“It’s nothing. Why did you come here at this hour, anyway? It can’t be that you ran away because you got scared of the girls fighting, right?”
Before I knew it, I had replied sarcastically. Keith squinted, not smiling at all this time. I let out a dry cough and changed the topic.
“Would you like some tea?”
“No, it’s fine.”
My thoughts trailed back to the cheap tea bags that were stashed away in my pantry when Keith thankfully refused. It was about time he stated his business. I stood there nervously, and Keith finally opened his mouth.
“I can’t do five percent.”
“Pardon me?” I asked, confused by his sudden remark.
Keith buried his body deep into the couch and slung his long arm on the backrest.
“I heard that you asked for five percent of P Entertainment’s shares. I can’t do that. Give me a different condition.”
“I heard from Emma that that’s what you told her.”
Only then did I remember what I had said that day. I never expected my nonsensical comment to bite back at me like this. I looked down at him in disbelief. Keith was still awaiting my answer, with patience that I never knew he had.
“Are you asking me to come back?”
“Am I not?” Keith asked back, mockingly as always.
At this point, my curiosity was driving me insane. What could this man have gone through to come to me with a proposal like this? If I heard the reason, however, it felt like I would be obligated to say yes. Besides, I couldn’t imagine that he would bother putting together an entire story just to explain everything to me.
All he would do was get angry and demand an answer.
Since I already knew the outcome, I desperately suppressed my curiosity that was now simmering like lava. I feigned composure and opened my mouth.
“What if I refuse?”
“There’s no way you would.”
“Because the deal would be unprecedented.”
I squinted. “Even if I told you that I wouldn’t back down from the five percent share?”
Keith fell silent for a moment before letting out a deep sigh. He rubbed his temples in contemplation. It was truly a rare sight.
I jolted at his low mumble. He shifted his gaze onto me and gritted his teeth.
“I can’t go any higher. Tell me anything else you want other than that.”
At that moment, I bit my lips and managed to swallow my word. Screw shares, I was almost just choked to death by that man.
That was one way to kill myself.
I took deep breaths, trying my best to remain calm. Just then, my nose that had been dulled caught a whiff of his pheromones. I realized a little too late that it was about time the effect of the medicine faded. I quickly raised my arm and blocked my nose with my sleeve.
“What?” Keith asked. He seemed to really not understand what I was trying to say.
I replied frantically, “Your pheromones. Do something about it. If you really want to hire me again, please stop exuding those goddamn pheromones whenever I’m around.”
I was speaking rather crudely, but Keith didn’t say anything. All he did was slightly crumple his brows. Still blocking my nose, I scurried across the living room and opened the window wide. Just as I did, exhaust fumes rushed into the house. I had no choice but to close the window again.
When I had returned to my original spot after this sequence of meaningless actions, Keith opened his mouth.
“Is that all?”
When I looked up, he asked again with an apathetic tone.
“Is that everything you’re asking for? Nothing else?”
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