Two months later.
Luna convoked an employees’ meeting. The Firm was going to be sold to Mrs. Müller’s corporation. New employees were going to join the staff and others were going to be promoted.
Mrs. Müller wanted to created several divisions within the main corporation. She was going to keep Luna’s office as the visible head of the big firm, adding over the following months other offices spread around Spain, opening new offices in Portugal and Morocco. As a direct consequence, Luna was going to retire, enjoying unexpected endless vacations.
The biggest party ever took place at Luna’s place. All the employees were invited with their wives, husbands, girlfriends or boyfriends. Mrs. Müller with her husband was present too, as was M.
Luna was wearing a silky turquoise dress that hugged her body like a second skin and impossibly high heels. M had forced her to look stunning for that special night.
Luna had rolled her eyes in annoyance, but after a long moment, she had given up. She’d do anything to make M believe that she was fine and that she had gotten over LA and Vin Diesel.
Luna was walking from group to group, talking, laughing and making jokes, with a diet coke permanently in her hands.
M was watching her all the time, fixing each and every single move of Luna and making mental notes about her behavior.
From the very first time since they had met more than five years ago, Luna hadn’t asked M for her help or advice. She had just pretended that she didn’t really care about Vin Diesel. Luna hadn’t shown her deepest feeling and emotions to anyone, not even to M.
Honestly, M didn’t need to hear it from Luna’s lips.
M knew full well that Luna was pretending and if she would have been an actress, that night Luna would have won the Oscar for best female performance.
M knew that Luna had always been a tough woman, but she was also extremely fragile. M knew that inside of Luna was living her worse enemy, herself.
M was sure that Luna’s pain was killing any emotion or feeling that was fighting to be released from within her core with every new fake smile and laugh. M also knew that sooner or later all that pain and sadness would end up destroying Luna.
M knew that Luna was lost in a dark place, scared to death and alone, but she also knew that the only one capable to release that sorrow was Luna herself. Luna had to find her path again.
She knew that Luna had to find that damned voice that lived within her, killing it forever so that she was able to leave her sorrow behind. And until that day, Luna wouldn’t be able to be Luna again. So M moved backwards and waited for Luna to be ready to face her fate again.
M had shown Luna her path and had started to guide her along it, but without warning, Luna had decided that she wasn’t going to follow that path. Luna had chosen to listen to her interior voice instead of M’s.
Luna had made the worst mistake in her life and now she was paying for her behavior. That was the only reason why Luna hadn’t asked M for her help or advice.
M understood Luna and respected her decision, and waited just like she had many times before. M waited in complete silence at Luna’s side because M was her best friend.
Luna was in front of her closet thinking about what to wear. It has been almost more than half an hour. Suddenly Luna started to hum a song while trying to make up her mind between two different outfits, not even realizing that she had started to sing.
After getting ready Luna headed toward her car and searched inside the glove compartment. She pulled out a hard rock CD and started the engine of her turquoise SL600, then drove to the main street, singing at the top of her lungs.
“Buon giorno per la matinaaaa.” Luna mocked while pushing the glass door. The receptionist snapped her head up and fixed Luna with a surprised gaze.
“Good morning, madam.” Ana replied, her brows arched. In response, Luna rolled her eyes smiling.
“Don’t call me “madam”, Ana. My name is Luna.” Luna corrected her, grinning as she continued walking to Susana’s desk. Ana followed Luna’s moves as a huge grin spread on her lips.
When Luna reached her assistant’s desk, she smiled even more broadly, and that smile actually reached her eyes.
“Buon giorno per la matinaaaa.” Luna repeated as she headed directly to the small room, searching for a diet coke.
Susana’s eyes almost popped out of her head at the sound of Luna’s greeting. After the initial shock, she smiled broadly.
“Buenaaaas.” Susana said. Her voice full of joy.
“Any messages?” Luna asked, pulling out a can of diet coke from the small fridge.
“Yes. Mrs. Müller’s flight is delayed three hours. Luis is in the meeting room with a…” Luna cut her off.
“Mrs. Müller is late? Great. I’ll be able to lunch with M.” Luna said as she opened the can. Susana looked at her, grinning and continued.
“Luis is in the meeting room with a client. The Architect…”
Luna didn’t let Susana finish the line, again.
“New client?” Luna asked then took a sip from the can.
Susana frowned slightly, and pretended that she was starting to be annoyed with her even though she was fighting the urge to start bouncing up and down.
“Yep, new client. The Architectural Studio sent the drawings of M’s guesthouse. It seems that…”
Luna once again didn’t let Susana finish the sentence.
“Oh, Fuck! Don’t tell me that there’s a problem with the drawings?” Luna whined, frowning deeply. When Susana didn’t answer but continued staring at her, pretending to be mad, Luna knit a brow puzzled. “What?” She grinned wickedly.
Susana shook her head, rolling her eyes.
“No, there are no problems with the drawings. They wanted to be sure that M really wants those final changes in the interior design.” Susana said, tilting her head to one side, grinning.
“What a great fucking day for rock and roll!” Luna exclaimed, laughing. Susana laughed with her.
“Oh yeah, baby. It’s more than just fucking great.” Susana teased, as she extended her hand, giving Luna the notes with all the messages.
Luna grabbed them and headed towards her office, humming a song and shaking her hips slightly with the rhythm.
Susana shook her head, smiling broadly. Some things seemed to have returned after six months.
Los Angeles. Vin.
The promotion of “The Chronicles of Riddick” had started two weeks ago. The Studio had planned the tour around Europe carefully. The Distributors were rubbing their hands, waiting for Vin Diesel to visit the main capitals of Europe presenting TCOR.
Some of the cities had been confirmed already and some were still on hold. London, Paris, Berlin and Rome were already waiting for Vin Diesel to come. Madrid and Budapest hadn’t confirmed their interest in the movie yet.
Vin Diesel was ready and able to play his part in the show.
Premiers, press conferences, photos, interviews on TV, more photos, more interviews, premiers, more press conferences, more photos, more premiers and more photos.
Countless autographs were signed. Vin Diesel was smiling as if his life depended on it, pretending that everything was okay and that he was having the time of his life, presenting his movie around the country.
Again, everybody started to ask him about his private life.
There weren’t any pictures of Vin Diesel kissing the lips of any woman or grabbing their bottoms. No pictures of Vin Diesel with chicks coming to openings. If he appeared with a woman it was to be his sister or Amanda. The rest of the pictures were showing Vin Diesel surrounded by bodyguards or Valentino.
No more rumors about wild parties at his place where only women were allowed to come. No more “private parties” with chicks that he used to pick up with Val in the clubs. Consequently, the rumor about Vin Diesel being gay started to make the rounds.
Vin Diesel was more than used to those kinds of rumors, so he acted as he had been doing since the beginning.
Vin Diesel said that he wasn’t homophobic and that he had always respected the private life of everybody concerning their sexual orientation as long as they were respecting the laws. Then he continued speaking about the movie, about the others actors and actresses that had contributed to TCOR and about his next projects.
Any question regarding Luna, the Spanish woman, was automatically wiped away from the list by Amanda. If any journalist asked a question about Luna, Vin Diesel always had the perfect way out.
He used to grin, answering that he still hadn’t found the perfect woman for him, but he was still looking for her. Then he used to fix his beautiful chocolate brown eyes on several of the women that were around the press conference, making jokes about not to forget to leave their cell phone numbers so that he could call them later.
Vin had spent almost all of the morning reading a new script lying under the sun in a hammock. Roman had been uneasy since the day that Luna left.
Vin frowned as he lifted his head. It had been almost half an hour and he hadn’t seen Roman around.
He got to his feet, looking around, searching for where his pet was. After a moment, he spotted Roman playing with something in a corner of the garden. The dog was biting and licking a small turquoise piece of fabric.
Vin heaved a hard sigh and headed to Roman.
“Hey, big boy!” Vin called. “What’cha got?” He asked, narrowing his eyes in suspicion. Roman lifted its head, barking loudly. Vin fixed his gaze as an unconscious grin graced his lips.
Roman was playing with Luna’s turquoise top; the one that she was wearing the first time she came to Vin’s house.
It seemed that the dog had stolen it from her as soon as she came back the second time. At this point, the top had been reduced to tatters.
Vin remembered that back then, Luna had asked him if he had seen her turquoise tank top around as she was looking for it, naked as the day she was born. Luna told him that she was sure she had left it on the armchair in the bedroom.
Vin grinned, thinking about what he had answered while tapping a spot at his side, and his own words echoed faintly inside his brain.
“Who cares? I like it when you’re naked around me. So, move that killer ass to my warm bed, babydoll. I want you here with me.”
Vin crouched next to his dog, petting his head. “You miss her, huh, Roman?” Vin asked absently. In response, Roman let out a pained howl, rubbing his head against Vin’s knee.
Suddenly, Luna’s laughter echoed inside of his head and Vin’s eyes filled with tears. He blinked a couple of times and two single tears rolled down his cheeks.
“Papa misses her too, big boy.” Vin whispered sadly, fixing his gaze in a spot only he could see. “Don’t worry, Roman. I will find her.” He added and continued stroking his dog.
“Yo, Vin! Where are you, bro?” Val’s voice called him.
Vin sniffled slightly, wiping his tears away, then swallowed hard and cleared his throat.
“Here, Val.” Vin yelled back, getting to his feet.
Valentino headed directly to him and hugged him tightly. Vin frowned, puzzled, and looked at him in amusement.
“I love you too, man. But what..?” Vin asked as Val let him go smiling broadly.
“I found this.” Val said, pulling out a paper from his back pocket. “Here, bro.” He added, as he gave it to him.
Vin narrowed his eyes in suspicion and took it, then unfolded the paper and his eyes widened.
It was a picture of Mr. and Mrs. Müller, M, Luis and Luna. At one side there was a small text written in Spanish.
“What do they say about her?” Vin asked, without taking his gaze off Luna’s eyes.
Val grinned as he leaned against his shoulder and started to read aloud, translating the text.
“M surprised us one more time, hosting one of the biggest parties of the season for her best friend the executive Miss Luna Andrade, in Málaga. In the picture from left to right. Mr. and Mrs. Müller (German contractors), Luna (Owner of UC Constructions), Mr. Jose Luis Santaella (General Manager) and our beloved M. It is official now. ‘Müller Corporation’ had acquired ‘UC Constructions’, becoming one of the highest investments on the coast of Málaga.”
Vin stared at Luna’s face, frowning slightly. Luna was smiling from ear to ear, but her smile wasn’t reaching her eyes. Vin noticed the brightness had vanished completely from those beautiful green eyes he remembered and missed so much. He then looked under the picture and saw that they had added a small interview with Luna.
“What’s she saying, Val?” Vin asked, looking back at Val.
In response Val started to read the interview for himself until he found the question he was looking for. Grinning wickedly, Val answered.
“Luna’s saying that she’s going to retire prematurely because she’s exhausted. And she has to deal with unfinished matters that have been postponed long enough.” Valentino summarized, smiling slightly. Vin knit a brow. “And…that’s great news, bro because Luna got rid of one of the obstacles that was in her path.” Val added as he tapped Vin’s shoulder, grinning.
“And what the fuck does that mean, bro?” Vin asked, puzzled. Valentino laughed, shaking his head.
“Fate, man. Fate.” Val answered as he moved backwards. Vin growled, annoyed.
Fate had cost him more than just a few tears.
“Are you ready?” Val asked as he turned on his heels, heading toward the house.
“For what?” Vin retorted, following him, frowning deeply.
“For the European tour of TCOR, bro.” Val answered, grinning wickedly. “And to finally face your fate, Vin.” Val added, laughing hard.
Vin shook his head, rolling his eyes.
“One day, Valentino. I’m gonna beat the shit out off you.” Vin teased, putting the paper in his back pocket, following Val inside of the house.
“Sure, Vincent. You and who else?” Val mocked, laughing loud.
Vin shook his head and laughed with him.