Chapter 680 Atonement
Sonia’s voice was soft and raspy with sleep, and given that her eyes were still closed, she clearly wasn’t fully awake yet.
That being said, for her to ask for the time despite having not fully awakened meant that she knew she was lying next to him all along. Otherwise, she would have bolted upright and demanded an explanation for his presence, and he didn’t think she would do it kindly either.
Toby glanced at his watch on the nightstand and said evenly, “It’s 10:00AM.”
At that moment, Sonia’s eyes flew open as she exclaimed, “What? It’s already 10:00AM?” Judging by her high pitch, she was more than astonished by his answer.
He nodded slightly. “Yes, that’s right.”
She scrambled to get up. “Oh, no. Oh, c**p. I’m late! I have a meeting that I’m supposed to get to this morning.”
She raked her fingers through her hair and made to throw off the covers, but just as she was about to tumble out of bed, Toby reached out to pull her back into the confines of his arms. Startled, she tried to pry his arms off as she asked urgently, “What are you doing, Toby? Let go of me right now. I have to wash up and get to work!”
“Hold your horses,” he said with a low chuckle. “Your secretary called earlier, probably to ask why you haven’t gone into work at this hour. After she found out that you were with me, she hung up, though. She didn’t urge me to wake you up so you could rush over to Paradigm Co., which means the meeting this morning isn’t really that important, is it? So, why don’t you just relax and have some breakfast before you head over?”
“But…” Sonia trailed off hesitantly. She knew the meeting today wasn’t that important, but she had never been one to bail on company matters, or on anything in general.
Toby took one look at her frown and immediately knew what she was thinking of. He reached up to massage and smooth out the divot between her brows, then muttered softly, “I know what you’re thinking, but sometimes, being late and bailing on a company meeting aren’t necessarily bad things. On the contrary, it will only add to your authority because you’re the chairman of the company and you have the privilege of showing up late.”
It was only after she heard this that she calmed down and the panic that had seized her moments ago slowly ebbed. With a nod, she relented and responded, “Well, if you say so, then I guess I’ll be slacking off today for the sake of it.”
He was the president and chairman of Fuller Group, so he couldn’t possibly lie to her about these things. Besides, she knew for certain that her tardiness today wasn’t going to hurt Paradigm Co. in the slightest.
Now that she was consoled, she figured that if she was already running late as it was, she might as well just enjoy her half-day off. “I know I’m not in a rush to get to work, but I still have to get up at some point. I mean, aren’t you starving?” she turned to ask the man who was hugging her from behind.
Toby had his head dipped as he toyed with her hand, which was right on top of his own. Her hand was soft and delicate, and for some reason, he found it one of the most enchanting things about her, so much so that he couldn’t bring himself to let go.
“I’m fine, but we should probably get up,” he decided, releasing her hand.
Sonia could sense his reluctance as he detached his hand from hers and she was highly amused by it. What’s so fun about holding my hand? She brought her hand up before her and inspected it from every angle; she hadn’t sprouted an extra finger overnight, and she couldn’t find anything remotely interesting about her hand that could enthrall him so.
Without dwelling too much on this, she lifted the covers and crawled out of bed before heading into the adjoining bathroom.
Toby fell in step behind her, resuming his role as her shadow as he made to wash up with her.
They had done this together the night before, so in a show of acceptance of his behavior, she did not stop him from following her into the bathroom. After all, she was in his territory as a guest, and certainly there had never been a guest so bold as to forbid their hosts from going anywhere in his own home.
After washing up, Toby sauntered into his own walk-in wardrobe to put on a fresh change of clothes for the day while Sonia went out to the balcony to retrieve her laundry.
She had already thrown her laundry into the tumble-dryer last night, and she wasn’t too concerned that they hadn’t dried in time.
Presently, he emerged from his bedroom after wearing his clothes, and Sonia was done putting on hers as well. She was sitting on the couch in the living room and holding up a hand mirror as she applied her make-up.
“What do you feel like having for breakfast?” she asked, casting him a sideway glance as she tried to draw in her eyebrows.
He walked up to her, his gaze falling on her clothes as he suggested, “Why don’t we dine out?”
Sonia put down her hand mirror. “Okay.”
“Since you like the sausages at Royal Restaurant so much, we’ll have breakfast there,” he said as he straightened his necktie.
He noticed that she was wearing her clothes from the day before. He had told her that he would have Tom send over a new outfit for her, but she rejected his offer, saying that she wasn’t sure how long Tom would take with the delivery and that she wouldn’t mind wearing the same clothes.
However, Toby suddenly had a feeling that it was time he had some of her clothes here for nights she decided to stay over.
At the thought of having her clothes inside his wardrobe, he started to tingle all over with excitement. He swallowed, and when he saw her checking through her purse to make sure she had all her stuff, he said hoarsely, “Let’s go.”
“What’s wrong with your voice?” She slung her purse over her shoulder and looked at him with genuine concern, then pressed, “Is your throat still fried from all the alcohol you drank yesterday?”
Sonia tilted her head to the side, a little confused as she thought, That can’t be it. He sounded fine when he woke up this morning.
Toby avoided his eyes and lowered his gaze while mumbling, “It’s nothing; I’m just thirsty, that’s all.”
He was not going to tell her that he grew a little too excited at the thought of having her clothes in the wardrobe along with his. He knew she would not let him live this down, and would make fun of him mercilessly.
Sonia did not doubt him at all when she heard his reason, seeing as he truly had not taken a sip of water since he woke up that morning.
She bent over and poured out a glass of water for him. “Here, drink some to soothe that throat of yours before we leave.”
He hummed in response and took the glass before he gulped down the water. He couldn’t very well refuse, because that would mean he wasn’t thirsty at all and that he had been lying to her.
When he was done with the water, they walked toward the door. They had only just reached the threshold when the bell rang.
Toby turned on the intercom, and through the camera, he saw that the person standing outside the door was none other than Tom. He was pacing around and wringing his hands with a long sigh every now and then; he looked worried and nervous for some reason.
Seeing this, Sonia frowned and guessed, “He’s probably here to apologize to you.”
“Apologize?” Toby was about to open the door for Tom, but he stopped when he heard this.
She tucked a loose strand of her hair behind her ear. “Yeah. It totally slipped my mind, but Mr. Brown was here with me as well when you were drunk yesterday. Grandma called and asked how you were doing and I’m not quite sure what Mr. Brown told her, but she fainted on the spot after that.”
“She fainted?” Toby’s eyes widened, and a shrewd expression etched itself upon his face.
Sonia reached out to pull his hand. “Hey, don’t get mad and don’t worry, she’s fine. The stress probably got to her and she collapsed after panicking. Mr. Brown called me the same afternoon to tell me that she was coping well. I was going to tell you about this after you sobered up, but I was busy taking care of you that I forgot, until Mr. Brown showed up here looking like a bundle of nerves.”
Upon hearing her explanation, he felt his heart calming in his chest and finally lodging itself back into place.
All that matters is that Grandma is fine, otherwise… A dark gleam flashed in his eyes as he tightened his grip on the doorknob and opened the door with much more force than needed.
Outside was Tom, who straightened up and stood to attention when he saw the door open. “President Fuller!” he greeted with utmost respect and what appeared to be contrition.
Toby merely stared at him icily without uttering a single response, and at the sight of this, Tom felt a bitter chuckle bubbling up behind his throat. Well, looks like President Fuller has already found out that Old Mrs. Fuller collapsed out of shock yesterday.
Tom was not the least bit surprised that Toby had learned of the incident. Even if Sonia hadn’t broken the news, he would have shown up and ready to atone for his grave mistake. In fact, that was precisely what he was doing right now.
With that in mind, Tom took in a deep breath and bowed apologetically at Toby. “I’m sorry, President Fuller. Whatever happened to Old Mrs. Fuller was my fault. I’ll take any punishment you deem fit.”