Chapter Forty-Nine

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TRISTAN

"There you guys are," Arden yelled over the loud music that was blaring throughout the private venue.

Leilani and I had just arrived to Cardi B's album release party. It was a little awkward between us. The last time we saw each other was a couple of days ago when Leilani got me high and we almost had sex. I had stopped things before it went too far so now things were a bit weird, but not weird enough for her not to accompany me to the event. I could tell how eager she was to possibly meet Cardi and hear her new music. She was in such a good mood that she actually agreed to meet Arden despite her abusive past.

Leilani was looking as beautiful as ever in a white, revealing dress that had lace like material. Her hair was half up, half down the way I liked it and after some convincing, she put back on my Cartier bracelet that she had given back to me. Though we weren't together, I still loved her and paid a good amount of money for the bracelet. I didn't want to give it to anyone else or let it go to waste.

"So, this is the infamous Leilani. Tristan talked so much about you during our time in the studio. She loves you a lot," Arden told Leilani. I awkwardly cleared my throat while Leilani smiled a bit uncomfortably. We didn't publicly break up so Arden had no idea. "I'm Arden, by the way." Arden went in for a friendly hug and though Leilani was hesitant she hugged back.

Mira who was standing beside Arden with a grin went in for a hug as soon as Arden and Leilani pulled away from each other. Leilani seemed a little more comfortable with this hug and even squeezed Mira. The Hungarian girl giggled as she let go of Leilani. "You're so much more beautiful in person. No offense! Your photo shoots are breathtaking, but you look even better in person," Mira gushed to Leilani who blushed like a little girl.

I was happy for her. Mira was one of her role models and she was getting so much praise from her. "That photo shoot you did back in 2014 for Gucci was phenomenal. You're a huge inspiration to me, Mira," Leilani told Mira as the two women held each other's hands. They were grinning at each other and giving compliments back and forth.

"Seems like our women are really hitting it off, huh," Arden told me with a smirk as she nudged my shoulder. I laughed lightly as I scratched the back of my neck.

"Actually, we're not together anymore. Lani and I broke up. Well, we're taking a break," I told her as nonchalantly as I could.

Arden gave me a worried look and mumbled an "oof" under her breath. "No way, mate. You two seemed to have so much love for each other."

"We do and that's why we're still friends," I replied with a shrug.

Arden put an arm around my neck and even rubbed my shoulder soothingly. "Yeah, mate. I can see in your eyes you're a hurting a bit, but I'm here if you need me, yeah?"

I gave her a soft smile and nodded my head. "Yeah."

The party was filled with celebrities. While Mira and Leilani seemed to be infatuated with each other and their conversation, Arden led me around the venue and introduced me to some of the hottest musicians in the media. She talked me up as if I was some outstanding vocalist that they had to hear and teased them about our upcoming collaboration. I grinned, laughed and engaged in conversation but Arden did most of the talking.

While I was making connections, Leilani was enjoying herself at the bar and on the dance floor. Cardi was playing tracks from her album and Leilani was showing her newfound love for them by shaking her ass. Of f-cking course, she became the center of attention and guys began crowding her to try to get a dance. I kept an eye on her since she was getting drunk but at the same time, I didn't want to be overbearing so I kept my distance.

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