Interlude: Perspective

“Ughhh…” Zayne groaned as his alarm went off for the second time. Damn it. Part of him was so tempted to hit the snooze button yet again, but he knew he had to start getting ready if he wanted to make it to the restaurant on time.

He sat up and swung his legs over the side of the bed with great reluctance. As a heavy yawn passed his lips, he made a mental note to never work the opening shift the morning after he closed ever again.

This time though, he’d had no choice. Victoria was back in the US for a wedding and would not return until Monday. So for the past week, it had been up to him and Simon to run the kitchen on their own. Taking a Saturday off when it was just the two of them was out of the question. If he wanted to spend his evening with Abigail, the opening shift had been his only option.

Zayne reached over to finally turn off his alarm, and immediately noticed a flood of notifications popping up on his screen. He furrowed his brow curiously. He’d been expecting to wake up to a handful of birthday wishes, but this seemed a little extreme.

It wasn’t until he began reading them that he understood.

Holy shit… Poor Simon!

Despite his sympathy for his coworker, Zayne felt almost guilty for how frustrated he felt too. His six-hour opening shift had just turned into a fourteen-hour double. Ugh… Happy Birthday to me.

He’d nearly made it into the shower before he realized that there was a much bigger problem he’d nearly forgotten about. Fuck. Abigail.

How the hell was he supposed to tell her that they had to cancel their plans? Abigail seemed so excited about celebrating Zayne’s birthday with him. She’d gotten them tickets to see Cardinal Sin headlining at Windenburg Stadium that evening, and they’d been looking forward to the concert for weeks. But now…

God, she’s gonna kill me. Zayne told himself miserably. Abigail always took everything so personally! But it’s not like it’s my fault or anything… What choice do I have?

He spent his entire shower rehearsing how he’d break the news to her, but when the time came to make the call, his mind went completely blank. His heart pounded violently in his chest, and his mouth had gone so dry. Maybe it won’t be so bad? Zayne mentally crossed his fingers as Abigail finally picked up. He hoped he hadn’t woken her.

“Hey, Happy Birthday!” He could almost hear the smile in her voice.

“Thanks.” He croaked back. Zayne swallowed nervously.

“This was a nice surprise… I thought you’d be headed in to work by now.” Abigail continued.

Zayne nodded, forgetting for a moment that she could not see him. “Yeah, I’m just about to head out. I just needed to talk to you about something first… It’s kinda important.”

“Sure. What’s up?”

He took a deep breath. This is it. “Look, I’m so sorry, Abs… But I can’t go to the concert tonight.”

“W-what?”

“I know. It fucking sucks.” Zayne sighed. “But I have to work a double tonight… Simon’s mom’s in the hospital. It sounds really bad.”

“What about Victoria? Can’t she cover it?” It was clear from the tone of her voice that this was going to go just as badly as he was expecting. Shit.

“She’s still in the US til Monday. I’m the only one who can run the kitchen today.” His voice was almost pleading as he continued. “Believe me, I’m upset too. And I promise I’ll make this up to you. I just really don’t have a choice right now.”

“No choice. Right.” Abigail replied softly. “I guess I just don’t see why you can’t work something out… I mean, you’re the owner! Couldn’t you like, close early or something? Just for today?”

God, this shit again. Why couldn’t she ever understand? “I can’t. You know I wish I could, but I can’t.”

“You can… But you won’t.”

It was getting harder and harder to keep his cool. “Can we NOT do this right now? Come on, Abs… It’s my birthday.”

“Yeah, and you’re choosing to spend it working all day instead of spending time with your girlfriend.”

“Christ, are you for real right now?!”

Abigail did not answer his question. “I guess I should let you go. Don’t wanna be late, right?” She asked sadly. “Have a nice birthday, Zayne.”

She hung up before he had a chance to reply.

——————————————————–

Worst birthday EVER… Just kill me now. Zayne slumped down in the chair, holding his face in his hands.

He’d already been dreading this particular birthday for years now. It was such a strange feeling, knowing he was officially older than either of his parents ever were. For the rest of his life, Zayne would look at pictures of their smooth, youthful faces while he looked in the mirror and watched his own grow old and wrinkled. He’d experience things they never felt. He’d see things they never got to see. It was so painful to think of.

Zayne had been looking forward to spending his birthday at the concert with Abigail — Relaxing, having fun, and being able to take his mind off the pain the day would bring.

Instead, the entire day had been a disaster.

He was sick with worry about Simon and his mother. He was sorry for hurting Abigail. He was angry that she hadn’t been more understanding. He was exhausted and stressed from his hours of work. He was frustrated with all the mistakes the new waitress had made during the dinner rush. He was sad he hadn’t had time to say more than a brief ‘hello’ to his family when they’d come to visit him that afternoon. He was overwhelmed and miserable. He was ready to go home.

And thankfully, he finally could.

Zayne bid one last goodbye to the staff who’d stayed to help clean up, let them out the back door, then headed to the front to finally lock up and go back to his apartment.

When he finally stepped out into the cool night air, he was not expecting to find someone waiting for him.

“Happy Birthday!” Hope smiled warmly at him, rising to her feet as he drew closer.

His eyes widened slightly in surprise. Zayne hadn’t seen Hope at the restaurant since her date with that guy from the gym a few weeks ago. In fact, he’d barely seen her at all since then. Their paths usually crossed a few times a week — at the gym or the grocery store or on the street… But not nearly as often anymore. Just like what Abigail wanted. What had changed?

“Hope?” At last he found his voice. “What are you doing here?”

She just shrugged. “A little bird told me you were stuck working all day, so I decided to try and make sure your birthday doesn’t completely suck. I know Abigail didn’t want us hanging out anymore…” Hope bit her lip guiltily as she spoke. “But I thought maybe it would be okay to make an exception on your birthday?”

“It’s fine.” Zayne assured her, though he had a sinking feeling that wasn’t entirely true. He did his best to shake the thought away. “So… A little bird, huh?” He smiled playfully at her as he drew closer.

“Maybe more like a little Facebook stalking.” Hope confessed with a laugh. “I saw your post about missing the concert, and then the message your aunt left on your wall. Plus, you hadn’t been answering any of my texts. It wasn’t too hard to put the pieces together.”

“Yeah, my phone died like halfway through my first shift. Sorry.” Zayne smiled warmly at her. “But I’m really glad you came. Thank you.”

“I would have come sooner, but I had a feeling you’d be too busy. Luckily it’s still your birthday for…” Hope paused and checked her cellphone. “Seventeen more minutes. Just enough time to celebrate!”

“Celebrate?” He raised an eyebrow, finally noticing the bottle and paper bag sitting on the table. A warmth washed over him at the sight. Hope still knew him all too well. “With wine and cheap Chinese food?”

She smiled. “Is there any other way?”

After the hours he’d spent there that day, Zayne felt sick and tired of being at the restaurant, so they decided to share their meal at the park down the street. They didn’t say much to each other while they ate. Zayne gave her a quick rundown of how his day had gone, and Hope nodded in sympathy. But other than that, they just giggled as they struggled with their chopsticks and passed the wine bottle back and forth, amused that Hope had forgotten to bring glasses with her.

It wasn’t until they’d both finished eating that they finally addressed the elephant in the room. “So… I guess Abigail must have gone to the concert without you?” Hope asked softly.

Zayne simply shrugged. “No clue.” He sighed softly. “I tried texting her before my phone died, but I never heard back. I haven’t talked to her since this morning.” A strange mixture of sadness and anger stirred within him. “God, she was so pissed at me. And I mean, I get she was disappointed, but did she have to make me feel like shit about it?”

“Mmm… Sucks, doesn’t it?” Hope looked at him significantly as she spoke.

It only took a moment for Zayne to realize what she meant. He couldn’t help but laugh. “I know, I know… I’m a total hypocrite, right?” He shook his head slowly.

Even years later, it was still painful to remember what a jealous jerk he’d been when Hope had scheduled a photoshoot on his birthday. But only now did Zayne truly realize just how deeply he must have hurt her back then. It was so strange looking back on it, now that he was on the other side of things.

“I mean, I get where she’s coming from.” Zayne continued. “I’ve been there… As you know.” For a moment, the corner of his mouth twitched into a smile. “But I wish she could understand my side of things too… I dunno.” He shrugged helplessly. “I just hope we can talk it out and fix this…”

“You can. I know it.” Hope assured him with a smile. “Especially since you’ve been in her shoes before…” She paused for a moment before continuing. Her face glowed softly in the moonlight, and her expression was so thoughtful and beautiful… Zayne couldn’t help but marvel at the sight.

“It’s amazing what a little perspective can do, huh?” She asked at last, lifting her gaze to meet his.

Zayne nodded, saying nothing. For a moment, it was so tempting to continue holding her gaze and allow himself to get lost in her beautiful eyes… But he couldn’t.

With a bit of reluctance, he tore his eyes away from her to instead stare up at the thousands of twinkling stars above them. It had been so long since he’d taken the time to truly enjoy the calm beauty of the night sky. It was breathtaking.

He rose to his feet and took a few steps forward, his eyes drinking in the incredible sight. Beside him, he could hear Hope do the same. For the first time all day, he felt so relaxed. So at peace. Maybe his birthday hadn’t turned out to be so shitty after all.

“Look at those stars…” He whispered. “It’s a beautiful night.”

“Yeah… It really is.” Hope replied softly. “Happy Birthday, Zayne.”

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48 thoughts on “Interlude: Perspective

  1. I’m on edge with what I feel about Abbie. It’s his birthday, let him celebrate his own way. I have a really bad feeling she went to the concert with another guy. Not sure, we’ll have to wait until wednesday to find out.

    Zayne, poor Zayne. He missed out on celebrating with his gf, and a real tough birthday as well. I’m glad he got to celebrate somehow. He still has feelings for hope though. I wonder how Abbie will react when she finds out he spent time with Hope and not her on his birthday. At least he understands how she feels.

    Hope. At least she let him have his space with his girlfriend and stopped stalking him (as much). But the facebook stalking turned out good this time as it meant Zayne got a chance to celebrate his birthday. +points to Hope. -Points to Abbie.

    I think @WitchHazard would agree Hope won round 2.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Interesting theory about what Abigail did at the concert… we will see! And yes, I really felt for Zayne in this one 😦 His birthday was kind of a mess. Luckily Hope saved the day though 😉 I’d also maybe agree that she won round 2, but we will see what the WitcHazards think!

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  2. It’s HIS birthday though. Abigail could have been way more supportive. She could have done what Hope did. I’m sure he didn’t want to pull a full day but he’s the owner and if his business fails it’s mostly on him. The restaurant is his baby and his livelihood. I really thought some sparks were going to fly and they were going to realize that they were ready to give it another go. #TeamHoZey Get out while you still can Zayne!

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    1. This is so true. It’s his birthday and she made it about her 😦 It’s really unfair!

      As for sparks flying… I think they flew, but they didn’t catch anything on fire 😉 hahaha

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  3. Nooo! Kiss her you fool! Maybe next chapter will be a continuation of his birthday….One can dream….and they go back to his place or Hope’s and fall into bed and Hope gets pregnant. Yes…dreaming again.

    I figure Abigail will find out that he spent the rest of his birthday with Hope and go off on him. Maybe she was even more pissed because she wanted to share a little red-headed birthday surprise. God I hope not. 😦 I am soooo not liking Abigail. All she does is make Zayne unhappy. He has to cater to her and walk on eggshells around her to not piss her off. That is not love dear boy. And HE called her first thing in the morning – of course he had to break their date, but still, SHE should have been calling him so she would be the first to wish him happy birthday….Witch.

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    1. Hahaha Zayne is too good of a guy to ever cheat. He wouldn’t do that, sorry 😛

      Interesting that Abigail acts a lot like Zayne used to, huh? 😉 Zayne is kind of getting a taste of what Hope went through back when they were together. So he at least understands why Abigail acts this way. We will see what happens from here!

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      1. He may understand why she is acting this way, but that doesn’t make it okay. It didn’t make it okay when Zayne did it either. He went through a lot of hell to change. Will he confront Abigail with this insight? He has to do something. He can’t just pretend like it didn’t happen because she is the one that’s upset and he has to figure out how to deal with it – or not.

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  4. Abigail just lost a whole bunch of points with me, not that she had much to begin with. I don’t think she understands what it’s like to be a business owner. You can’t just close early especially since the restaurant is still new because the money made in those few hours will make a huge difference. She should have found someone to give the tickets to and go to the restaurant to be with him, even though he’s busy. I would have sat in a corner sipping on a cup of coffee and snacking on appetizers until his shift was over. At least he would have been able to check in with her every few minutes and she could help relieve some of his stress even for a few minutes. Or she could have done what Hope did and meet him after with cheap Chinese food and wine. Abigail really dropped the ball on this one and I hope she didn’t go to the concert anyway without him cause that would be a dick move to ignore the man all day and go to the concert with someone else when it’s HIS BIRTHDAY! I’m reading her reaction and I’m like ‘is she for real?’ I could understand Zayne being upset that Hope had to work on his birthday (even though he overreacted) but why the hell is Abigail so upset? It’s not her birthday, it’s his! She might be pretty and have some nice traits about her but to me I think Zayne should start running. This chick has turned into a jealous controlling girlfriend. First it was his friendship with Hope and now the restaurant. Next thing you know she’ll be telling him he’s spending too much time with his family!

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    1. I really like your idea for what she should have done on his birthday instead. (And honestly? That’s probably what Hope would have done if they were together haha)

      Abigail has a definite selfish streak, and is super jealous/insecure. Some of this comes from her situation/backstory (which unfortunately I am not at liberty to share LOL She’s a character from a friend’s legacy who is still just a baby in her story, so I need to safeguard some secrets until Abigail is a fully fleshed-out character 😛 )

      Thank you for reading and sharing these insights, Eddie!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I had a feeling this one might draw some strong reactions from readers 😛 Abigail definitely seems to have a selfish streak, huh? :-/

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  5. I’m angry at Abigail. She seems really selfish, and doesn’t understand what the restaurant means to him, and how it works. Plus, it’s his birthday, not hers. I love how Hope decided to give him a little company, to make sure it wasn’t a terrible birthday. I have a feeling Abigail either went to the concert with another guy, hooked up with a guy at the concert, or hooked up with another guy at home, simply to make Zayne jealous. She seems like the type. I think I’m gravitating back to ship SS Hozay, but we’ll see how the next few chapters go. And poor Zayne, officially being older than his parents ever were. Sounds tough.

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    1. Yeah, I don’t think Abigail won a lot of points with people in this chapter… Hopefully she didn’t go quite as far as you’re predicting though! Guess we’ll see…

      And yes, this birthday was really hard for Zayne 😦 I can’t even imagine what that would feel like, but I get the sense it would be really hard.

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  6. Dark WitcHazard: Hello friends due to the events of the Part One Finale of No Stars Over Uptown Lover finds her self a little under the weather since she’s quite squeamish so Justice will be a temporary fill in she will back next week so I’m interested to see Justice’s perspective on the situation that is Round 2!

    Justice WitcHazard: I don’t see why this is such a big deal all he’s trying to do is have Nooboos for tax rights offs anyway so who cares who he’s with!

    Dark WitcHazard: Like I said interesting perspective! So what did you think of Abigail’s poor fighting this round especially after her take down in round one?

    Justice: Well the entire phone call I was like why you hitting yourself? Why you hitting yourself? Then I realized how hilarious it was and decided why stop her it’s entertaining!

    Dark: I agree that phone call didn’t do Abigail any favors! It didn’t go over well with her fans or her haters!

    Justice: She seems to be one of those people who think big gestures makes for the best memories yet it’s so sweet quite moments people remember the most so I don’t see why she avoided him the rest of the day I mean it was still his birthday!

    Dark: She won’t say anything if Zayne’s business becomes multi million dollar franchise! But okay so he’s the owner that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have to work either!

    Justice: If this lasts and makes it down the isle she’s so getting a prenup!

    Dark: You think they’d still get married!

    Justice: People have dumber things than married the wrong person!

    Dark: Agreed! Although Hope sorta took Lover’s advice and went on the defensive! Dropping off the face of the earth making Zayne develop a new sense of longing! Then laying down that major upper cut with the cute birthday surprise something he really needed!

    Justice: Amazing tactic on Hope’s part! I mean to although it has all the makings of a perfect date but Hope made sure it stayed nothing more than a perfect evening between friends! If she keeps this up she’d make a great mistress! Not the ones that you want to take your husband to court for infidelity but the kind of mistress you want to even though it’s wrong still come out on top!

    Dark: Well if it wasn’t obvious Hope surprised not only Zayne with the perfect remedy for his birthday blues but an also unexpected win! We’ll be back with the play by play for Round 3 thank you Justice for coming!

    Justice: I’d say it was a pleasure but you didn’t pay me enough for that so I guess it was alright!

    Dark: Okay that’s all the time we have folks see you next time!

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    1. Another great analysis from the wise Court of WitcHazards 😉 Hope as a mistress though, huh? LMAO Not sure if Zayne would be up for that or not… 😛

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  7. Heh, everyone is getting a taste of karma this week, eh? It must be on sale. XD

    These two make me so nervous these days. Glad Zayne decided to stay focused and not do anything stupid…cuz ol girl would let him!

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  8. Oh, and uhhh, perspective? Yes. Not sure if Zayne has the complete picture yet, but seems like Hope does. Maybe she’ll stop stalking him and let things run its course now. However, her being there for him was very sweet. I have a feeling that gesture will be a very important memory later on.

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    1. Hope most definitely gained a lot of perspective since that ate with Parker haha and I think you’re right about Zayne. He’s getting there, but he doesn’t 100% ‘get it’ yet. And yes, for once, Zayne didn’t do anything stupid! 😛 For all his faults, I honest-to-God don’t think he’d cheat on Abigail, no matter how tempting it was. That boy doesn’t have the “good” trait for nothing 😉

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  9. Oh, Abigail should know that, a job is a job, even when your’ the owner….and, i’m just waiting for when they kiss and say that they love each other…But I do wonder, do they truly belive theat the other moved on, and that they are the only ones feeling something, or, they can see that there is some romantic tension in the air, but aren’t with the other because….of something?

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    1. That is a good question! I think from Hope’s perspective, she feels like Zayne has moved on and she (after having her moment of immaturity last chapter) has decided to not spoil that. I think Zayne knows Hope still has feelings for him, but he’s also trying hard to make things work with Abigail right now and move on from his past with Hope.

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  10. I feel with Zayne, it has to really suck for him to not only be treated in such a way but to see what a jerk he has been to hope, he had exactly the same attitude. But that may not only be his “punishment” or a sign for him he has learned, but it it also something that might compel him into sticking up with Abbys attitude, finding excuses for her and showing understanding, talking things out but missing the point where she crosses the line. Sticking longer with her than it is good for him, because he understands her and is convinced she can change like he did (but he learned through painful experience and not Hope always excusing his attitude).

    We have already seen the first signs of how Abby thinks in previous chapters, but now it shows in a way that is really hurting. I don’t know how much Abby understands how Zayne feels about his birthday, and how much of a stress it is for him. It should be obvious he would rather go to a concert than spending 14 hours at the restaurant at his birthday, which won’t run away from him. He really might want to close the restaurant for the day. But that would mean more trouble than no income for a day. He would have to pay his employees, the already ordered fresh food, he would disappoint some loyal customers. Zayne has learned a lot about how to lead a restaurant, how important it is to keep it running and profitable, and he has already lost a lot money when quitting his first try with Greg. I bet he has tried to tell his new Girl how important these things are, and she still feels set back.

    Abby wants Zayne to completely center around her, which shouldn’t even be requested in a marriage and is ridiculous to demand from a boyfriend. Everyone needs his little private space, his own interests. Zayne won’t love her less because he owns a restaurant, but Abby wants to always have the upper hand whenever there is a conflict of interests. She tries to control him, and if this doesn’t work she punishes him by ignoring him and letting out her moods at him. I already wait for the moment she tries to get pregnant just to have him secured and to get a lever to force him spending more hours at home and leaving restaurant work to someone else. She will only be satisfied if he gives up basically everything he likes and values other than her and adapts her friends and hobbys (or stays completely at home), even if she wouldn’t admit it (maybe not even to herself).

    It will lead to a big crash right now if Abby decided not to go to the concert but instead seek out Zayne at the restaurant (and watched him and Hope secretly). Those two talking together in the starlight, sharing jokes and whine, with Hope showing off she understands what Zayne needs at the moment, Zayne complaining about Abby. Zayne might behave like a gentleman today, but it sure as hell looks like a date, and Hope clearly shows she doesn’T “respect” Abbys unfair demand.
    I nearly wish for it, because a clear cut might be better for Zayne than keeping up with this game.

    But I really don’t think Hope should facebook-stalk Zayne. She isn’t over him, and clinging to him like this makes things more complicated not only for her, but for Zayne too. He doesn’t want to lose Hope as a friend, but he can’t keep fair to Abby if every talk and meeting with Hope feels like a freaking date.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for this awesome comment! You bring up so much great points about Abigail, and a few about Hope and her behavior too! This is a huge mess right now for everyone. And I felt bad for Zayne in this cone. Like you said, Abigail is being very controlling and unfair right now!

      And, at the same time… it defintely always seems to feel like a date when Hope and Zayne are together, huh? Hmm… We’ll see what happens from here! 😛

      Thanks again for this awesome comment!

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  11. I was so expecting Abigail to show up when Zayne was with Hope… Damn that would have been super dramatic 😀 well… I see this is headed towards a Zabs breakup and a Hozay revival? 😀

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  12. SS HOZAY! Clear skies and waters are close, crew. *points* we can see it from here. Just a little more out of these shaky waters, and the SS HOZAY will be in the clear.

    Oh and look, the sinking of SS Zabigail is almost complete. We did it! But just to make sure, fire another cannon at them.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I had a feeling you’d like this one 😉 We will see if the course is truly as clear as you think though 😉

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  13. Ugh, unpopular opinion maybe, but Hope was so out of line here. Leave the dude alone and respect his new relationship. Get on with your life.

    Also, Zayne, I’m sorry buddy, but you’re not treating your new girlfriend too well, either. Abigail was definitely overreacting and out of line here, but it is not fair for Zayne to keep her hanging like this when he OBVIOUSLY still has feelings for Hope. I feel like Abi would be a much better girlfriend if she wasn’t constantly feeling threatened and like she was not Zayne’s main priority.

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    1. Haha I appreciate that you have a unique perspective on the situation! 🙂

      Hope was honestly not acting out of any kind of desire to win Zayne back in this chapter. Like he said, she’s been avoiding him for like a month. She’s learned her lesson from the last chapter and is trying to honor Abigail’s wishes. But when she found out he had to work 12+ hours on his birthday, she decided to do something to make it special for him. 🙂

      As for Abigail, she is naturally an extremely jealous/possessive person, but you are right that those feelings are probably amplified by seeing the way Hope and Zayne interact with each other.

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  14. Zayne and Hope both do a really good job of making the exact wrong decisions to fix their issues, and it’s so fun to read.

    I just found your legacy a few days ago, and I’ve been binging it so hard. Keep up the good work! 🙂

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    1. Oh thank you so much!!! I really appreciate you reading ^_^ And yes… these two are both pretty good at doing the wrong thing 😂

      Thank you again! ❤️

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  15. That Abi woman…yeah not a fan. She should have been way more supportive of Zayne who had to give up HIS birthday to work because of what happened to Simon’s Mother! Shit the woman is fighting for life in the hospital after a car accident, of course Simon needs to be there. She’s acting like Zayne blew her off to go skateboarding and see a movie instead!
    Sorry, but things are not going to last…she’s too possessive!!

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    1. Hahaha I don’t ever recall such intense A2A shipping feelings(on both side) from my readers… I’m loving this haha

      You’re right that she really didn’t handle this well at all. And especially on Zayne’s birthday! I felt really bad for him in this one. We will see what happens from here… thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts! ^_^

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  16. Okay, I now officially have major issues with both Hope and Abigail.

    Hope: Quit stalking Zayne! It’s not cool. No, not even if he’s happy to see you. You’re chasing him to the gym, you’re taking dates to his restaurant, you’re waiting for him after work… You’re broken up and you know this will strain his relationship with Abigail. Reverse the genders and you can maybe see how creepy this behavior actually is. And you definitely shouldn’t be leading other guys on! That’s all sorts of wrong too.

    Abigail: No. He really can’t close early “just because,” not if he wants to try to make a profit. And he’ll be lucky to even break even on the first year. That half a day could make a huge difference. I mean, I get that the concert tickets were probably super expensive and you were looking forward to attending with Zayne, but you can always find a friend to tag along with you with that extra ticket and still go. Zayne doesn’t exactly have the resources to start up another restaurant if this one fails, and he has no one to pick up the slack. Besides… haven’t you ever had something unexpected come up at work? Coworker gets sick, or YOU get sick? Or worse, someone’s family member dies or is sick? Do you think it’s OK to leave work on the busiest day of the week just because it’s your birthday and you don’t want to be there? Zayne doesn’t just have to worry about the business and profits for his own sake–he’s also got employees on his payroll. That’s a big responsibility. So owner or no, at least until he’s sure he’s making a good profit, no unnanounced early closings. And the place is busy enough I doubt he’d need to shut down because it’s just too slow.

    Zayne: Seriously, dude? You’re picking right up with Hope again and you know better than to do that when you are still with Abigail. I’m pretty sure you blew it with Abigail, though–more accurately I’d say she blew it with you because she doesn’t comprehend work ethic or covering for your coworkers. Nevertheless, I think you’ve actually gotten a bit more mature and you can do so much better than either Hope or Abigail! You know, someone who doesn’t stalk you or get angry because unexpected stuff happens and you choose to be an adult about it. Everyone has their flaws, it’s true, but these two ladies are just crazy. So… find someone maybe less stalkery or controlling? Please? Is Victoria still single?

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    1. I have to disagree with you about Hope’s behavior here 🙂 In the chapter, we actually learn that Hope has stopped going to the gym. Zayne hasn’t seen her in weeks, because she has been respecting Abigail’s wishes and has been leaving Zayne alone. It was a very brief mention in the chapter, so I do see how you might have missed it though! 🙂 She came to the restaurant on his birthday with genuinely good intentions. She didn’t want him to spend his birthday stressed and alone.

      I do agree with your assessment of Abigail though! 🙂 She’s being very unreasonable and unfair 😦 Glad you appreciate Zayne’s growth as well! Thanks for reading, Buckles 🙂

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    1. I mentioned it in reply to some other comments, and we had a talk about it on my thread too (some people supporting Zayne, some insisting he could have closed it haha). There are several reasons why Zayne could not close his restaurant for the day:
      1. That would leave all of his employees scheduled to work that day unexpectedly without a day’s worth of pay. For people who support a family and rely on their income, losing out on that pay would make them unhappy.
      2. The restaurant is still very new and every bit of revenue is extremely important right now. It takes most restaurants a year or more to even pay back the startup costs. If Zayne truly wants to start making profits on his restaurant (plus his investors, who are relying on him!) he can’t afford to lose the thousands of euros of revenue the restaurant would make that day.
      3. Customers would be very unhappy with a 100% unannounced closing. Especially ones who had reservations (and, as LuzLicht is a bit upscale, I am sure they had some!). Again, as a new business they really need to make the best impression on their customers right now.

      Obviously if it were a 100% emergency where there was no possible way to keep it open, Zayne would have had no choice. But in this case, he did have a choice, and he chose to disappoint Abigail (and himself) rather than let down his employees, investors, and customers. It was a painful decision, but the one that he saw as necessary. 🙂

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    1. Yeah and I think Hope knew she was pushing it, but she really didn’t want Zayne to have a totally awful birthday. She wanted to do something to make it special for him 🙂

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  17. “You can… But you won’t.” Abigail was a b*tch here ._. (I usually don’t swear, but damn I disliked that girl fast). She really deserves to be with someone who probably doesn’t have much going for them in their lives, so they can spend all their time on/with her. Zayne is not that guy.

    Liked by 1 person

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