Million Dollar Charm - 9 (UNEDITED DRAFT)
“You’re doing lovely. I like that dress where did you get it.”
Frasia’s mouth pulled up with delight when she heard Vivica’s soothing low voice caress her ear.
“He’s a lucky man to have you, you know.”
She shrugged. “I do feel pretty spectacular tonight thanks to you.”
The woman waved her off in the careless casual way that she did. “I can honestly say I never thought I’d see you like this. You look like a grown ass woman. Now I know that you are, but you know you just look it tonight.”
“Surely hair and makeup couldn’t do all that.”
“Oh darling,” She moved her hair back away from her shoulder. “It has nothing to do with the make-up or the hair or even the cleavage sharing dress.”
“Excuse me ladies and gentlemen may I have your attention please?” Frasia’s eyes easily found Lex standing on the stage behind the podium.
Vivica was behind her now. “You’ve been glowing since L.A. I’ve noticed.”
Frasia quickly found the woman’s mischievous, knowing smile and they held each other’s eyes as the room quieted. Then Vivica whispered. “The sun down there is hot.”
“Thank you all for joining me tonight for the seventh annual Stacey Clide Enrichment Gayla. It’s so good to see so many familiar faces and many new ones as well this year.” Lex took a short pause. “I actually had another speech prepared for this evening.” He folded up the piece of paper and looked out at the attentive audience. “I was going to tell how much I believe in this organization to help recognize early signs of dyslexia and get young people the tools they need to succeed. Support, graciousness and understanding. But the truth behind my motives tonight is purely selfish. I want these young people to have the opportunities that I didn’t.” He took a deep breath. “I spent half of my education trying to hide the fact that I couldn’t read. Hide that I thought I was stupid because I couldn’t grasp a lot of the information when it depended heavily on reading. I, nor my teachers or parents, had any idea that I had dyslexia or even what it is.” Low whispers murmured out throughout the room. “I’m saying all this to say that access to knowledge can unleash the next scientist that cures cancer, or the next astronaut that puts entire colonies of humans into outer space, or be the next president of our country. All I’m asking you to do today is unleash these young people’s potential by giving them the tools they need to learn and tap into their fullest potential. I managed to do it, somehow, but there are hundreds of thousands who get left behind, who are trapped in a place where they’re only able to tap into a small amount of their destiny. Here, in this place, you have the power to change their lives. You have the power to give them something that is priceless: hope. This next part isn’t planned either, but for every dollar donated tonight Lexicon Social Solutions will match it dollar for dollar. Thank you gracing me with your presents and thank you for helping me change someone’s life.” The room erupted in cheers making Frasia look around at the people gazing at the man on the stage as if he were the second coming.
It was a great speech especially to be on the fly. She wondered how much was actually on the fly and how much he thought about beforehand. He was gifted, gifted at bringing people together, of capturing their attention, of earning their trust and leaving them in awe. She could easily see him running for office. Mayor, governor, or even president. She could see that. She crossed her arms and cocked her head to the side watching him from the back of the space as he smiled, shook hands, chatted people up.
The corner of her mouth lifted being the observer. There was a sense of pride that spread through her that he chose her, that he desires her presence, her affection, her attention, when he could have anyone's.
Where did she fit into his world though? It took so much self coaching to make it to that point in the evening where, when she stopped thinking about he own anxiety and focus on him she was able to find peace in it. She liked not having to be the smartest genius in the room. It was exciting to be honest. Just being arm candy, just being the one everyone was talking about, but their chatter having nothing to do with her merit, the last paper she wrote, the next conference she was speaking at.
She stood up straight when Lex approached her. The big smile turned into a mischievous smirk the closer he got to her. Her insides moved like heaven melted rock and she took a deep breath. Her eyes glided over his tall slender form in the three piece suit. He was so handsome.
His hands slipped around her waist and he pulled her a little closer to plant a kiss on her forehead.
He gazed into her eyes and she into his.
“I’m so lucky.”
She frowned. “I’d say. You’re gifted with words Mr. Law.”
He laughed stroking her jaw line with his thumb. “Not about that.”
The corner of his mouth lifted and his eyes assisted her with a measured calm like they had an eternity to be in that place. “You.”
Shock flashed across her face. “Me?”
He nodded. “You’re the most beautiful woman in this room.”
She dropped her gaze to hide the heat that was pushing up to her face. “Lex--”
“I’m serious.” He clasped the nape of her neck so she’d look up at him again. “You’re pretty tonight certainly, but your beauty is in your presence. If you think any of the conversations I had making my way to you from that stage had anything to do with my speech you’d be wrong. Everyone wants to know who you are.”
“What?!” More shock.
He laughed. “Don’t sound so surprised.” He pulled away and offered his arm to her which she took with little thought and they started walking. “I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to call it a night.”
She smiled up at him before her gaze fell to his mouth. “That’s the most profound thing you've said all night.”
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