“I’m really sorry, Lev. I love you but it’s our future that we’re talking about here. I’m still chasing my dreams and you don’t seem to care about your own stability. I love you. You know that. It’s just that we really can’t get married when we’re both like this…”

Lev chuckles on his own and lights his cigarette. He shouldn’t be remembering that but it wasn’t easy when their client is from a wedding couture house. He never really liked having clients that has to do with weddings but it’s not like he can reject big projects like that.

“When are you going to claim ownership of this company?

He grins, it’s his cousin and business partner Joss. “It’s my company whether I announce it or not. Besides, Devika is doing a great job handling everything.

Devika was simply his secretary before and now he promoted her to become the acting president.

He truly owns the very company they are in right now. An advertising company that focuses mainly on visual advertisement. Billboards, TV commercials, social media ads—name it and they’ll do it for you. The thing is, he just doesn’t want everyone to know that he owns this successful business. He just wants to remain and label himself as the freelance writer and photographer that he also is.

And that’s exactly what’s ticking his cousin off.

“It’s time to slap some of our relatives with the truth, man.” Joss gets one of his cigarettes but didn’t light it. “No offense to auntie and uncle, I still love them as my godparents, but they are the ones first in line to the people who needed to be slapped with your achievements. Also, with that ex of yours.

That made him laugh. “Nah, she deserves to know it last.

They are talking about the woman he was just remembering a moment ago. His ex-girlfriend and supposed-to-be fiancée, if she gave him a chance. Hell, she could have been his wife by now. But like what he said, she didn’t give him the chance to prove himself.

She hated his job being a “freelancer” and always argued about his, their, “stability”. Every single time that they did, he remained patient and understanding with her. He tried every single time to explain to her that he is doing what he loves and what he is actually passionate about. But she never listens to him and grew more and more anxious especially that she is making her own name with the modelling industry.

He was too blinded by love to see how toxic their relationship has become. All she can think about and say to him then was that he is just “not enough” anymore and he just accepted everything. That was his mistake. By this time, his start-up company has landed its very first project—a project that was big enough to ensure the future of his company. He was so tempted to tell her that but something is holding him back. He can’t even say to her that he owns a company.

Then comes the day that he proposed to her. He was ready to tell her everything, and all he needed to receive was her ‘yes’. But she rejected him with the same old reasons—right there and then, he knew that the woman he once loved is not the same woman anymore. But he didn’t want to give up. He even thought that he could try it again next time with a better plan to tell her everything. What he didn’t know was that he doesn’t have a next time.

A few days after his failed proposal, he received a break-up text from her and if it wasn’t cruel enough, she told him that she is never going back because she was about to get married with the director that she once introduced to him as her “good” friend.

“We could destroy her career and that’s even the smallest thing that we could do. But to hell with it! Your kindness is beyond explanation and it’s annoying.

He shakes his head and takes a long puff of his cigarette. “Let’s just let her be and thank her for what she did. It’s a blessing in disguise. At least, I didn’t end up with a person like her.

Good thing that his cousin decided to drop the subject. Joss excused himself to go back in the conference room to meet with their team who will handle the latest project.

He wanted to smoke another one when someone clears her throat, it was Devika. No smoking is allowed when she’s near even if they are in the smoking area.

“Hey, pres, anything I can do for you?

Devika rolls her eyes. “Stop it, Sir Lev, or I’ll quit so you would have to claim your position.” He immediately holds his palms up in surrender making the woman laugh, but she clears her throat again. “I’m just here to inform you about our meeting with the MS Entertainment’s CEO later.

Ah, yes, that company that has been the home of his ex-girlfriend since the end of time.

“Actually, I can’t come with you later because I have a date.

The woman raises her eyebrow at him.

It isn’t even new to him whenever Devika doesn’t believe his “dates” anymore. He chuckles. “I really am going on a date.” It’s at least half-true. “Remember that rude neighbor I told you about?

“The one who bought the entire floor of your apartment?

That is exactly the one.

He has four, five units available and has his own properties outside the city. It’s not like he can’t leave the apartment he is currently staying in but he just loves the place. It’s lowkey and comfortable and is perfect for him is quiet life—well until the said neighbor that he has come into his floor.

He never knew a person could as annoying as that person. What he hates the most is unwanted noise and that person can surely bring it to him in the most irritating ways. He misses his peace and quiet so much that he is actually willing to just pay the guy to leave.

But that would be impossible because what Devika has said is true—the guy owns the whole floor except for his space.

For the two weeks that he tried to be the most civil neighbor in the world, he finally surrenders and he is willing to meet the guy once and for all.

“Okay, then I’ll just inform Mr. Joss to be with me in the meeting.

He smiles widely. “You’re the best, pres.

He looks at his watch. Time for him to meet his neighbor.

Next chapter