<Author's note: Sorry, I had to repost this chapter. I didn't like the one I posted earlier because they were already eating when Nathan arrived.>
Nathan and Twitch arrived at the terrace on the second floor and were standing at the entrance.
"Sir, this is where we part ways. I will leave now and wait for you outside your room."
Twitch turned and left.
Nathan entered the terrace.
The view from the terrace showcased the South and West areas of Haven Town.
"Nathan! You're finally here!" An excited female voice called out.
He turned to his right and saw four people seating on a round table that's enough for 6 people.
There were two waiters standing on the side and a chef standing behind a breakfast buffet table.
It was Ashleigh who called him out.
She was dressed in workout clothes.
She stood up from the table, rushed up to him and gave him a hug.
He could smell her sweet shampoo and feel her voluptuous breasts pressing against him.
"I'm so glad you're here! I was so worried about you! I thought you were dead!"
She hugged him even tighter.
'Dead?' He laughed coldly inside his heart.
"I wanted to go pick you up this morning, but Rose said that it would be better if we gather here first to celebrate our reunion. I'm sure you have so many questions to ask."
'Rose prevented you from talking with me?' Nathan's suspicion of Ashleigh and Rose working together grew.
In truth though, Rose was wary of Nathan's nature.
Given how important Ashleigh's powers are, she was very important in the group. As for Nathan's nature, Rose feared that he would kill her once he learned about what really happened. This is why she set up this meeting to ease the tension before having them talk with each other later in private.
There was also another reason why she set up this meeting.
"Well, that's our Lee-Lee, alright." One female voice remarked.
"She is a bit too kind. But that's why everyone loves her," said male voice.
Nathan patted Ashleigh's shoulder.
"Bim – Ashleigh, I can't breathe."
"Oh!" She quickly let go. "Sorry, I got carried away."
Nathan heard a few chuckles on the table.
He flashed a friendly smile at Ashleigh and pinched her cheeks.
"Do you know how worried sick I was about you? How are you? Have they been treating you well?"
He secretly glanced at the people at the table.
There were 3 people there dressed in civilian clothes: Rose, a very handsome but chubby teenager who looked like Rose, and a strikingly beautiful black woman around the same age as Rose.
Rose and the other woman were wearing a morning robe, while the man was dressed in workout clothes.
"I'm doing fine. I've also been worried sick about you, Nathan – about you and Amir. I'm so glad that you two are fine."
Tears started to well up in her eyes.
'So you knew that they have Amir?'
He wanted to strangle her with his bare hands.
He pulled her towards him and embraced her. He gently caressed the back of her head as if she was the most precious person in his life.
"Oh Ashleigh, I'm sorry for making you worry. It's okay now. I'm just glad that things are working out well for ALL of us..."
She hugged him back.
"Yes… *sob* …Thank God."
Someone cleared their throat.
"The two of you are going to make us cry," Rose teased. "Nathan, I'm glad you're finally here. Please come sit so that we can all have breakfast."
Nathan pulled himself away from the embrace and looked at Rose.
"Sure, but I want Ashleigh to heal me first."
He turned to Ashleigh.
Her eyes widened in surprise. She finally noticed Nathan's sunken right cheek.
"Oh my god! What happened to you? Are you in pain? Let me heal you real quick."
She quickly placed her hand on Nathan's chest.
Light glowed from her hand and covered Nathan's entire body.
Whatever wounds or scars Nathan had, it vanished in an instant, making his skin like a newborn baby. The teeth he lost last night also grew in a blink of an eye.
He licked his new teeth.
"Nathan, are you okay? Is there still anything wrong? I'll cast again."
"No, everything is fine already. I was just amazed. Thank you, Ashleigh. Your power is really amazing. If only I KNEW about it back then."
He flashed a friendly smile.
"Come on, you two. Let's have breakfast," said the black woman.
Ashleigh wrapped her arm around Nathan's arm and dragged him to the table.
"Come, let's have breakfast or Brezine will get mad. She can be scary if she gets mad."
They finally got to the round table and sat.
Their sitting position, starting from the left: Ashleigh, Nathan, Brezine, Rose and lastly Richard.
"Lee-Lee, what did you just say about me?"
"Nothing~" Ashleigh flashed a cute and happy smile. "Nathan, well, you already know Rose so… This is Brezine…"
"Pleasure to meet you," Brezine said.
"…and this guy is Richard. Rose's younger brother."
Both Nathan and Richard nodded at each other.
"I wonder where Derek is at. He's a bit late. He should –" Ashleigh said.
"Let's order now." Rose said.
One of the waiters approached them.
"I'll have the usual." Rose said.
"Me too." Brezine and Ashleigh said.
"The usual as well but double it." Richard said.
The waiter approached Nathan.
"Certainly, sir," said the waiter and left.
"So how was your night? Pleasant, I assume?" Rose asked Nathan with a smile on her face. She was informed about Akane.
"I've had better nights," Nathan said with a flat tone.
When the two waiters brought an ashtray along with the food they've ordered, Nathan immediately lit up a cigarette.
Brezine and Richard looked at Nathan made a frown that lasted only a moment. Meanwhile, Ashleigh and Rose didn't show any discontent.
Rose took a sip of juice from her glass.
"Nathan, you're not going to eat?" Ashleigh asked.
"I already ate around 6:00 am. I'm an early riser."
"Oh… I thought Rose invited you last night?"
"She did? Well, I must've forgotten about it. You know me, I'm always so busy worrying about things, especially about YOU and my cousin."
"So, Nathan, how long have you been here in Womania?" Rose asked.
"Got any family here, like a wife and children or something?" Richard asked.
"Nathan is Amir's cousin," Ashleigh said.
"Amir? The man you told me about last time?" Richard said.
Nathan noticed a subtle hint of jealousy on Richard's tone and couldn't help but laugh inwardly.
'This is the problem of dating young and beautiful women. There's always another man trying to steal her away from you.'
"Yes," Ashleigh said.
Nathan's eyes glanced at Ashleigh and looked at her and Richard's outfit.
'These two probably worked out together this morning before coming here. How sweet. Well, I can't blame this bimbo for choosing this fatty over my cousin when such luxuries are being offered to her.'
Amir's family was rich, but not crazy rich like Rose's family.
Also, outside was no different from hell. Sure, there are a lot of things to loot, but it's also full of dangers, mainly because of the zombies and humans.
However, between the zombies and humans, it's better to encounter zombies because at least with them, they will kill you immediately. As for meeting humans, you're at their mercy and only God knows how long will they torture you.
"Excuse me. Can you put that out? We're eating and I'm allergic to that," Brezine said.
Nathan just looked at her and deliberately blew smoke in her direction.
Nathan turned to Rose.
"So aside from Ashleigh healing me, what other important matters are we to discuss about?"
Rose put down her knife and fork.
"Nathan, do you remember what we've talked about last night?"
He looked at Richard and Brezine.
As far as Nathan knows, only Rose, Derek, Ashleigh and him were the Chosen Ones in Red Dust. The others were just ants.
"Are you a Chosen One? How about you?" Nathan asked Richard and Brezine.
Richard and Brezine frowned.
"What are you trying to say?" Richard said.
"Although I'm not a Chosen One, I'm sure I can take you on anytime." Brezine said.
Both of them said in a cold tone.
Long before Nathan arrived at Haven Town last night, Derek already returned a few hours earlier to inform Rose.
With that, she ordered the people she was close with or vital to Red Dust to head to a secret location. Ashleigh, Brezine and Richard were among those people.
Because of this, although they heard about Nathan's power, Ashleigh, Brezine and Richard have no idea what it really feels like to fight him. To them, he was just another Chosen One that can easily be brought down with their numbers if they take him seriously.
Nathan looked at Rose.
"You invited me here for this?"
"Is there something wrong?"
Rose took a sip from her glass.
Nathan put out his cigarette before getting up from his seat and walking away.
"Nathan, where are you going?" Ashleigh asked.
In Nathan's mind, this was a complete utter waste of his time.
There were only two things that he wanted here, a primary and an optional one.
The primary one was getting healed by Ashleigh which could have easily be done by just having her go to him or having him go to her last night or this morning.
The optional one was the truth about Ashleigh. This was only optional because she meant nothing to him. Their only connection is that she's Amir's girlfriend.
In Nathan's mind, so what if she had such power? He survived on his own outside, why can't he continue doing it?
And based on the setup he was seeing right now, he was betting that Ashleigh is indeed on Rose's side.
If it's true, he couldn't blame her. With the kind of life she was living here, why wouldn't she? It's not like she and Amir are married anyway. And based on his understanding and experience with people, most will choose a position where they will be most comfortable at.
As for establishing a friendship or an alliance with Brezine and Richard, it meant little to him. In his eyes, these two won't even last a day outside of Haven Town on their own. Without their group's protection, they were no different from those humans that could do nothing but hide inside buildings like rats, eating God knows what.
He would rather eat alone in peace than force himself to eat with such people he doesn't and will not care about and engage with them in small talk.
"Let him leave, Ashleigh," Brezine said.
Meanwhile, Richard was looking at Nathan with contempt.
There were three things that Richard didn't like about Nathan:
One - He killed his cousin Lester whom he was very close with.
Two - Nathan's attitude.
Three - Being Amir's cousin.
He wanted Ashleigh but he knew that he can't force himself on Ashleigh or do anything against Amir because Rose will definitely punish him, perhaps even have him killed him.
"Nathan, I suggest you have an open mind. Can't you see that I set this up for you so that you can obtain more allies within the organization?" Rose said.
Nathan stopped and turned to Rose.
"Allies? Wasn't our arrangement was only between the two of us? I don't remember agreeing to lowering myself to ants."
"Fine. Since you don't know how to appreciate help when it's being offered, I won't force you."
"Don't bother me with useless things like this ever again."
Nathan turned and resumed walking. Meanwhile, Rose continued eating as well.
"Nathan, wait!" Ashleigh called out and stood up.
She was genuinely happy to see Nathan, because she really thought he died back then.
The fact that he protected her when the zombie apocalypse first began, she wanted to at least tell him the truth of why she didn't tell him about her powers and the current situation they were on.
Unfortunately, Nathan ignored Ashleigh's call.
As she was about to chase him, Richard grabbed her wrist, causing her to stop.
"Lee-Lee, you don't have to associate yourself with people who can't appreciate good company."
"Lee-Lee, Richard is right. Don't mind him. We still have a long day ahead of us," Brezine said.
"Rose…?" Ashleigh looked at Rose.
She put down her knife and fork before raising her head to look at Ashleigh.
"Brezine is right. We still have a long day ahead of us. Please finish your breakfast."
I hope you guys enjoyed this chapter. Thank you for reading!
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