Marcus Yu and Valerie Alioto have no plans to get married and are quite settled into their life as it is. Megan Alioto is a happy and fulfilled child. Can Valerie maintain her cover while working for Gordon?
Valerie’s job with Gordon usually had her out at all hours of the night. He didn’t have her doing anything illicit, but their meetings had to be during the night and they always had Valerie returning late into the night. He had tasked her with keeping tabs on his grandchildren by Kit, Dominic and Nadia Knight. It was an easy job but when Gordon said he wanted to know everything, he wasn’t kidding. It took all of Valerie’s skills and tact to keep her cover while she kept an eye on her daughter’s new friends.
She also felt guilty. Spending so much time with Gordon, she had developed an unfortunate crush, one that hampered her ability to think clearly. She found herself drifting off in conversation, somewhere else entirely. It was beginning to haunt her and make her uncomfortable. She cared about Marcus and she certainly didn’t want to disrupt her daughter, but she couldn’t shake the feeling that overcame her when she saw Gordon. Maybe it was because he knew what she did and she didn’t have any secrets.
Megan became good friends with Nadia, much to Valerie’s delight. Everytime she saw Megan smile, she was reminded why her infatuation with her criminal, vampire boss was ridiculous.
Besides, it wasn’t like her life was so bad, it was great, especially compared to the majority of the neighborhood. Most were caught up in crazy dramas and scandal, but Valerie and Marcus, despite not being married, always managed to keep their heads above water. They were happy with their relationship, feeling no need to push it further. They had Megan and that’s all they needed to bind them together.
Still, there was Gordon and meeting him in crowded, dark bars certainly didn’t help damper the thrill or excitement she felt near him. It wasn’t the vampire thing, she’d never been much into that, but simply his personality. He revealed so little, yet she knew all the textbook stuff, the marriages, the scandals, what he’d done, what he didn’t do but was accused of anyway. She knew it was wrong, but anytime she was near him she forgot about her obligations as a mother and girlfriend, throwing them to wind as carelessly as a whimisical teenager might.
“Could you be anymore obvious?” Gordon scolded, glancing at her. “Stop staring, you’ll draw attention.”
“Sorry,” she whispered, turning her eyes away and focusing ahead. She watched the red, neon light of one of the beer signs flicker on and off. “Can we talk outside?”
He sighed, taking the disc she discreetly passed him beneath the bar, “I’ll leave first, follow after a few minutes.”
“What’s going on with you lately? You’re slipping,” Gordon said once she joined him outside, his tone denoting his displeasure. “If you’re going to be sloppy, I’m going to pull you out of the action.”
“No, no, don’t, I’m fine, I promise… it’s just… well, I need to ask you something.”
“This had better be about business, Valerie.”
He raised his hand to stop her, but instead of falling silent, she took it into her own. His skin wasn’t icicle cold like she had anticipated, warmth danced beneath the surface, not as plentiful as her own, but there, nonetheless. Some semblance of life behind the marble complexion.
“There’s something here, right? It’s not just me?”
He shook her off like one might a child tugging at their pant leg, wanting attention, “Valerie, I do not mix work with pleasure. Ever. You are treading dangerous ground.”
“While I have no love for my ex-wife’s memory, I bear her children no ill-will. You are her son’s girlfriend, you have a child together… if my time has taught me anything, it’s the importance of family. You would do well to remember what they mean to you and what you mean to them,” he turned away, walking towards the street. Before crossing, he paused, glancing back at her, “no more talk of this, do you understand? I will not say it again.”
Valerie had no chance to reply, Gordon disappearing across the street and into the shadows. She felt an overwhelming guilt, his words ringing true in her ears. Even so, she couldn’t push it out of her mind. It was there, a thread hanging between them, vibrating with tension. It wasn’t going to just go away.
Gordon refused to see her for several days, telling her instead to take a couple of days off and remember what’s important. His intentions were good, but Valerie had no mind for it. She spent time with Megan and Marcus, but always, lingering in the back of her mind was that single, brief touch. It was a direct contrast to the hot water surrounding her and Marcus’ warm hands working the knots out of her shoulders.
“You feeling okay?” He asked, trying not to sound too worried.
She nodded, “yeah, just… overworked. Glad to have some time off.”
“You’d tell me if something was wrong, right? I mean, we’re open like that,” he said, putting his arm around her and pulling her close. “Well, not open, but you know…”
“I know,” she said, trying to hide her guilt. “Everything’s fine, Marcus, I promise. We can’t all be nice and laid-back like you… some of us fall victim to stress now and again.”
He leaned back, looking up at the sky, “you think I don’t know stress? Have you even met my sister? Were we even at the same party?”
Valerie laughed, “oh, yeah… it’s definitely good we don’t all have people like Shelly in our life. Poor Cole, did you see how much he was drinking?”
“Forget Cole, did you see my sister’s campaign manager? Now there’s a man who knows how to party.”
Note from Mao: Poor Valerie is so conflicted. She bounces between wants for Marcus and wants to see Gordon. Gordon is staying neutral, but ACR has them flirting whenever they’re near. Despite this, I can’t see Gordon diving headlong into anything, especially not this. Which is why I’m going by wants that make sense and not ACR’s constant need for flirting.
I’m just hoping that she doesn’t drop in while I’m playing Gordon’s house, because there’s waaay too many beds and I’m never quick enough to stop WooHoo’s that totally should not be happening, lol.