Journal 19: The Weight Of The World

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Aug. 26, 2016 A/N: This is a repost because this journal entry has been having problems. I can see it perfectly fine on my iPad but it seems to be missing everywhere else. 

Let me know if you're still having problems.



I am so bloody tired.

You know how Atlas felt when he had the world on his shoulders? Imagine it felt like that except it's almost an entire universe instead of one little planet.

I'm used to some level of crisis management. After all, I deal in a vast variety of commodities and stocks—in a multi-billion dollar scale. There's always something going wrong. If nothing's going wrong, then something's wrong.

But with one crisis after another this week, I feel like bashing my head through a wall. But I can't because as Brandon Maxfield, the only way out of a crisis is resolving it. And I can't say I've had terrible luck with it before. In fact, I excelled at problem-solving. But the stakes now are way higher than they've ever been. One wrong move and I could lose the people I cared about—people I had to shelter from the greed that's eating at my cousin like cancer.

At a visit with Dad after the Championettes brunch, he told me that he was officially retiring at the end of the year. I was going to be named the newest CEO. While that was something I've always wanted for a long time, and the very thing that drove me to Marlow's to find the girl that suddenly became critical in securing that title, I wasn't buzzing with excitement. It meant a few things I wasn't sure I was ready for yet. First, it meant accepting the fact that Dad is finally getting too old to rule his empire. Second, I'd have to deal with even bigger responsibilities that would demand so much of my time and attention—two things I'd happily devote majority of to Charlotte, and maybe our own new family, for at least a few years. But there's nothing to be done about it now.

Then the first day back to work, just when I finally had some interest in dealing with the threat Simone warned me about, Francis showed up, strutting to a seat across from me with the smugness of a man who already believes he's won.

He appeared empty-handed but I knew he had something the moment he recited a clause in my contract with Charlotte word for word. Then he pulled a folded photocopy from his pocket and carelessly tossed it on my desk .

That son of a—.

I'm not going to finish that statement because that will be disrespectful to my dead aunt but I very much want to put Francis into the ground next to her. The bastard knows about my deal with Charlotte, no doubt about it. I'm not nearly as surprised as I should be that he does. The question I'm more interested in is how.

Francis has been trying for some time now to find leverage against me. I've just always managed to be a step or two ahead of him. And there had been no dirt for him to find—until I struck an unconventional deal with Charlotte and suddenly found myself with something of immense value to lose.

There are a lot of things Francis would want for whatever leverage he could find. Knowing he'd take his time as a predator would with his prey before it went for the kill, I just sat back and waited for him to start.

But surprisingly, he only asked for one thing.

And unfortunately, it's the one thing that's not negotiable.

I'll admit it now that I'm overprotective. And that I sometimes go overboard with my attempts. But in my defense, I did what I thought was best at that time, not knowing whether Francis was going to spiral down even farther into a hell of his own making where he'd be in too deep to even know he's taking others along with him into the fire.

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