162 Chapter 162: Summer Beverage.

[Edward POV]

"What's wrong with you all?" Uncle Jim was confused when he got back to the deathly silent table after emptying his small bladder.

"NOTHING…EVERYTHING'S FINE!" Maggie replied with an ashen face, and her tone became weirdly high pitched. Her chin quivered, as if to prevent herself from crying, but she still tried to hide the matter.

"A-Alright then. Let's go- Wait. I'll smoke my cigarette first."

"Then we'll stay right here." I replied with a smile, and a better acting than Maggie was currently doing. Uncle Jim was a bit relieved and said, "Okay. You cousins catch up! I'll call you when I'm done."

"Alright." I nodded at him. He wanted to speak to Maggie and Amy, but he saw that they were ignoring him, so he just awkwardly walked away.

The second Uncle Jim was gone, Amy and I scolded at the same time.

Amy whispered angrily, "What the hell were you thinking?!"

" How could you not notice it was for porn!?" I scolded.

"I-I…THEY GAVE ME A LOT OF MONEY!" Maggie tried to defend herself, but we rolled our eyes at her in disbelief.

I kept reading the contract in concern while asking, "Did they have any videos of you yet?"

"WHAT? NOOO!" Maggie answered in disbelief.

"Hey you're the one who signed up to be a pornstar! I'm just trying to fix it!" I scolded her angrily.

"Can it still be fixed?" Maggie asked with teary eyes. "I didn't even take off my clothes when I got to the audition before. They just said that they liked me, gave me the money, and next thing I know they are saying they want me in Europe next week."

"It's their common M.O." I explained. "They got a clause in here that said if you want to cancel the contract, you need to pay 10 times the signing fee."

"And also, flying you to Europe is to isolate you from people that could help you when they try to pressure you later. 'Cause they can't really force you to do it. But they can pressure and blackmail you. It's morally wrong, but it was still legal within the scope of the law." 

(Based on a true syndicate in our world that still roams free even though they had ruined the lives of countless girls.)

Amy cried and said aggrievedly, "How can they get away with it?"

"Simple. Money. Maggie, although I do think you'd make a decent pornstar, is it really something that you want to do?" I asked with hesitation as I met her gaze.

Maggie was furious, "HOW CAN ANYONE!?"

I nodded and said coyly, "Right. Also to be honest, if I had a cousin who actually did this thing, it would be horrible for my own image. So…I'll help you cancel the contract."

Maggie grabbed my arms tightly and gazed into my eyes, "Are you sure?"

"Yeah. Give me the signing fee. I'll do something about it." I said with a sigh. This situation made me thankful that I had come to Wisconsin for a break. Or else, I might have caught a huge blow when I saw my cousin in an adult videos website.

Maggie then avoided my eyes guiltily. I narrowed my eyes at her and asked in suspicion, "You still have the money right?"


Amy interjected, "They gave you 20 grand. Of course it's still there…right? I mean. You can't spend 20 grand in just a few days. It's impossible…isn't it?"

Maggie's chin quivered again and she said, "It…it's gone."

"ALL OF IT?!" Amy shouted in confusion. "What did you do with it?"

"Prada, Gucci, Channel, or all of the above?" I asked.

"All." Maggie lowered her head. "But that isn't all there was. I also put down a deposit on a house, and paid the rent for 6 months!"

"Oh. So you're still sensible with your money." I nodded as I heard it. "Wait…This is all a part of your fake college thingy right?"

"Yeah." Maggie replied in a tiny voice while Amy glared at her. "I also used that money to pay off the student guide to trick Dad..." 

"Impressive." I muttered mockingly while I glared at her.

"Well if it wasn't a pornstar contract, it COULD have been." Maggie dropped her head on the table.

"You know if I want to cancel the contract, I'd have to fork out 200 grand plus legal fees. How are you going to pay me back?"

Maggie and Amy froze.

I continued, "You don't think I'm doing this for free do you?"

"W-W-" Maggie stammered and couldn't find the words.

"If you can't, then I'm going to have to get the money from your dad-"

"PLEASE Don't! I'll try to get the money! Please Help me Ed!" Maggie begged.

I sighed after I was done teasing the almost crying girl. Even though my dad and I just won the lottery, and I had over 30 millions dollars in my personal account – after making investments here and there, I didn't think I had it in me to do some more charity.

"Girls. Ed. Let's go." Uncle Jim called, causing the conversation to be halted. 

As we got into the car, Uncle Jim suddenly said, "Now that we've filled up, it felt a bit cramped in here. Amy, why don't you get into Edward's lap so that we can have more space."

"I'm not doing that." Amy replied begrudgingly. "Maybe Maggie can do it."

"Yeah. Like the beginning of a very…special…video." I muttered whisperingly, causing Maggie to blush.

"Huh? What was that?" Uncle Jim asked in confusion.

"Nothing." X3

We smiled awkwardly at him, and were silent on the whole ride home before we continued the conversation in Amy and I's room.

[General POV]

Inside the Entertain Company building, CEO's office.

"Okay. Email me the contract. I'll handle it." Harvey said while she was on a call with Edward.

"I can dig out the dirt on these guys. Can your prosecutor friend get them locked up? They are targeting a lot of people." Edward asked Harvey with concern.

Harvey shook her head, "These types of people are like eels. They are slimy and dangerous. It's better to just cut the ties with them. Who knows what kind of backer they have." 

Edward sighed.

Harvey then continued, "Your album release is tomorrow. I don't think you should get involved in this Ed. Because legally, they are untouchable unless you can destroy them at the root."

"Hmm… Then, if I tracked down the entire network, maybe we can do something about it right?"

"I'm not recommending you to do so. It'll take a lot of money to hire private investigators-"

"It's okay. It's just a thought. Maybe I will do something, maybe I won't." Edward muttered with a chuckle.

Harvey nodded in satisfaction and asked, "What did the doctor say? A lot of people on the internet are already praying for you who died a few days ago, so I'd like it if you can get back on screen soon."

"There's no rumours like that. Don't lie to me." Edward scoffed.

"Yeah. You should know. You're the source of all the rumours after all. My mistake for trying to trick you." Harvey laughed while teasing Edward.

After Edward talked with Harvey for a while and explained about what the doctor said, Harvey fell in disbelief.

"The doctor really let you pick the name?" 

"Yeah. I'm just going to go with Sleeping Beauty Syndrome. People already know about that. And I don't want to let my name be famous that way." Edward explained.

Rare diseases usually use the name of the first patient who got it as the term, so Edward wanted to avoid that.

While Edward was talking on the phone, Amy and Maggie were staring at him from afar, through the gap of the door, after he kicked them away to speak privately with his lawyer.

Amy whispered, "He's been speaking for a while. It must be difficult to get you out of the contract."

Maggie's face was ashen and she replied nervously, "Is there really no other choice? Should I come clean to dad-"

"Come clean about what?" Camila and Jules- The grandmother suddenly appeared behind the girls, causing them to flinch.

"What are you guys doing?" Jules asked before she took a glance from the girl's previous point of view. "Why are you peeping on Ed?"

"We're not peeping!" Maggie defended herself.

"You need to come clean about what?" Jules asked before Maggie could prepare herself mentally.

Caught off guard, Maggie accidently muttered, "About porn-"

"ABOUT HER PORN ADDICTION!" Amy interjected quickly and loudly. To their luck, Ted and his sister were walking with Uncle Jim, and heard what they were saying.

"Maggie?!?" Uncle Jim and Aunt May exclaimed in bewilderment. Maggie glanced at Amy in shock, and she was stunned speechless about the whole situation. 

"NO! I don't have a porn addiction-"

Amy whispered at her, stopping her from continuing, 'which is better? Being a porn star, or having a porn addiction?'

"I-I-" Maggie teared up from the helplessness. Uncle Jim and Aunt May nodded their heads in understanding and hugged their daughter sympathetically and lovingly.

Aunt May muttered, "It's okay. The first step to get better is admitting that you need help."

Amy snickered beside Maggie while Uncle Jim said, "Of course, this matter should be handled privately. But I'm grateful that you trust your family so much that you made an open declaration about it."

"What's going on?" Edward asked while he was on hold on the call. The commotion outside the door caught his attention, so he let Harvey read up on the contract first alone.

"Maggie and Amy told us they have a porn addiction." Grandma Jules muttered with a concerned expression. "You should follow us to church tomorrow Ed. I'll ask the pastor to pray for you so that …this doesn't happen again."

"Grandma! I didn't-" Amy was speechless when she heard her name included in the addiction stuff, and tried to defend herself, but Uncle Jim and Aunt May pulled her into the embrace too and said, "It's okay. You're okay."

Edward smiled and returned back to his call, "Sorry about that. Where were we?"

"Your album release. Pulling the dateline forward is a great way to prevent Pepper from getting all fussy over you. (After he collapsed) But right now, Pepper's almost losing his mind from the mountains of work he needs to settle before tonight."

"That's still good-"

"He got drunk yesterday and roleplayed Marilyn Monroe the entire time after we clocked out." Harvey added, causing Edward to burst in laughter.

"You laugh now, but wait till he starts calling you, intoxicated at midnight!" Harvey muttered in annoyance as she spoke from experience.

"Ah. So he disturbs you and Donna's intimate hour huh?"

"Don't talk about that." Harvey said angrily. "Anyway, your album is basically ready. Are you prepared for what comes after?"

"I am." Edward muttered casually. 

"Good. As you know, including the tour and all the interviews, you might not meet your family again for at least 3 months." Harvey warned. "It'll exhaust you mentally and physically. It will also take a toll on all of your relationships-"

"I already said I'm prepared for it. You don't need to keep selling it." Edward muttered self-deprecatingly. 

"You're sure that you can handle the cooking video on your own? Should I send a film crew there?" Harvey asked again after having the initial discussion with Edward on how to show people that he was still in great health.

"You underestimate me. But I guess, I still need a professional tool. An HD video camera. I can edit the 1 minute video on my own and upload it tonight."

"Are you sure? You know you're supposed to be resting." Harvey asked in concern.

Edward paused for a while and muttered helplessly, "...Yeah."

[Edward POV]

I confiscated the luxury items that Maggie had splurged on and gave it to my grandmother and aunt May as gifts, earning me the position of the most loved from the young generation in the house.

Maggie was almost crying, but she had to keep a smiling face as she congratulated her mother and grandma, which caused Amy to snicker again.

Luckily for me, Uncle Jim had indulged himself by buying a 2300 dollar Panasonic Camcorder, which earned him more than a week of sleeping on the couch with his wife. 

I borrowed the camera and recorded a short video of me making a special summer drink to be posted on my instagram account.

"Umm… You're purposely trying to be sexy right?" My uncle Jim asked in confusion after he saw me wearing an apron with no shirt on.

"I'm not trying. I just am." I replied teasingly. Unbeknownst to me, Amy and Maggie couldn't keep their eyes away from me, and Aunt May was already reacting the same way as them.

"What are you making?" My dad asked curiously.

"It's called Rosella Green Grape. It's nice and refreshing to drink in the summer, and that is what I'm aiming for."

"First, we need to crush the shine muskat at the bottom of the glass, before adding 20 ml of apple syrup. Then, put circular ice inside of the glass, before adding one serving of Yakult drink, and then top it off with Rosella tea. Lastly, We garnish it with some mint leaves." I explained to my family while making the drink.

"Give it a taste." I slid the glass of 3 coloured drinks in their direction. From the top, it has Red, white, and green colours, and it looks aesthetically pleasing.

"Umm..Delicious." My grandmother tasted it first, and gave me a thumbs up. "We'll drink this at dinner today."

I nodded, but then she added, "Ed will make it for all of us."

I almost stumbled and asked Maggie aggrievedly, "Didn't I just explain the way of making it?"

"Yeah. But I couldn't catch a word of what you were saying. Your nipple is trying to get out of the apron-" Maggie blushed as she pointed at my chest.

I rolled my eyes before starting the recording. As for the video, I shot it in a food aesthetic style before I recorded myself drinking it.

"Give it a try this hot summer." I said with a smile before ending the video.

It took only a few minutes of editing, and then I posted it on my instagram. After I was done, I didn't even check the notifications and spent some time with my family. 

I helped my grandmother in cooking dinner together – more like I was captured and guilt-tripped into, 'because I was already wearing the apron'. Although in the end it was a nice moment I could share with her.

Right after the very early dinner, which was at 4.30 pm, Maggie and Amy told Uncle Jim and Aunt May that they wanted to spend some time at the ranch rather than going back to their house in town.

Amy looked around and shut the door after making sure that no one was paying attention to us. We put a monopoly game in the middle of the room, and sat surrounding the board.

"So, what did the lawyer say?" Maggie asked hesitantly. "Also, should I roll the dice? Or just pretend we are playing?"

"We have already taken it out. Just roll it." I muttered before casually playing the game. Amy became the banker, and I went against Maggie.

"Amy. The money." I said annoyedly to the blanked out girl.

"Oh. Right." Amy was startled and she did her role quickly. 

"Well the lawyer said she's going to take care of it. So you can take your mind off it." I muttered as I bought land and built a house on the board.

Maggie just rolled the dice absent-mindedly and said, "Oh. Okay. Good. But what about the money?"

"What about it?" 

"How am I going to pay it back?" Maggie asked while biting her lip in frustration.

"You're an adult now. How do you think you can pay it back?" I asked.

Amy was silently watching the whole thing, and felt that the atmosphere there had become a little bit weird.

Maggie thought deeply for a while, and Amy and I could almost see the smoke coming out of her flushing face as she never used her brain all that much.

"I give up- Wait. I can be your girlfriend. And then the debt is off!" Maggie suggested her brilliant idea.

I scoffed and said, "Are you forgetting who I actually am?? If girls were what I wanted, do you really think I couldn't just get them? "

Amy rolled her eyes at me and muttered, "That's douchey."

"A little bit. Yes." I turned to Amy while nodding a bit in agreement. "See Maggie. Not only do you owe me, you also turned me into a douche."

Amy was silent for a while before she spoke, "Maggie. I know you don't want to hear this, but I really think you should tell mom and dad."

"Why? So that they will disown me?" Maggie teared up again. 

"No. But, it's better than letting Ed take the responsibility. He's the same age as me, you know?" Amy coaxed.

I had no objection to what Amy said. To be honest, it wasn't my burden to carry. It was Maggie's. 

I was only helping her because I could. Even if I really had a cousin who became a porn star, I don't think it'd matter much to my reputation– except with the conservatives in this country. But who cares what they think?

Maggie was silent for a while before she realized that she had been dependent on me. 

"Of course, you can still wait to tell them after I break the contract. No rush." I muttered.

Maggie nodded a bit before she smiled softly and said, "Are you sure you don't want me to be your girlfriend?"

"Ewww…Isn't that like incest or something." Amy curled her lip in disgust as she shot Maggie a dirty look.

"It's not. We're not really related. We are half…related…right?" Maggie asked me.

"How should I know?" I retorted.

"Well grandma is not your dad's mom, so he and my mom are only half-siblings. So it's like, we're half cousins. If you don't want me to date me alone, you can add Amy into the mix." Maggie instigated.

"No thank you." I muttered quickly. Amy looked at me in bewilderment before arguing, "I was going to say no, but why did you say no? Am I not pretty enough for you?"

"Yeah." I nodded calmly, causing Amy to sulk and Maggie to burst out in laughter.

"Alright Maggie. You land in my plot. So you need to pay rent." I said after Maggie rolled the dice.

"Oh. I don't have enough money for rent." Maggie said in a teasing manner. "Do you accept other methods of payment?" She said while unbuttoning the top of her blouse, revealing her supple-white chest. 

"Maybe. What kind of payment are you thinking of?" I didn't back down. Maggie crawled purposely while locking eyes with me, and before she could touch my thigh, Amy interjected by kicking her body away, causing her to fall on her side.

"STOP THAT YOU SLUT!" Amy shouted.

I laughed before I said to Maggie who was in pain, "By the way. You really have acting talent."

"Oh. You think so?" Maggie asked in excitement.

"Yeah. Acting talent for pornography." I added, causing Maggie to attack me with her legs. However, as I fend myself off, I accidentally elbowed Amy's chest.

"Oww It hurts." Amy said while rubbing her boobs.

"Sorry. But I don't feel anything." I muttered.

"WHAT? Do you mean that there's nothing to feel? Are you saying I'm flat chested?"

"Get him!" Maggie shouted before she and Amy lunged at me at the same time.

It turned into a 3 way fight between Amy, Maggie, and myself, and it ended with me locking both of their limbs, causing them to beg for mercy as they asked to be released.

[General POV]

On Instagram, Edward's social media page was trending after he posted the short video with unnecessarily high quality on his account.

[Edward Newgate – 1 hour ago]

<Video >

Caption: As you guys can see, I'm still alive! Don't forget to support my debut album which will be released tomorrow! 'Breaking' will be available for sale worldwide after a good night's sleep! 

However, you might feel uncomfortable sleeping peacefully on this hot summer night. So try this drink, it always helps me to beat up the summer heat!

Likes: 114, 000

Comment: 12,232

The video was also shared around countless times on the social media platform, and it popped up on the [Explore] page.

Some of the comments on the video were pinned after Edward read them.

@EdwardFanclub : Edward! Glad to see you're healthy!

@RDJ: Is the naked apron thing really necessary? 

Edward replying to RDJ: YES.

@Taylor: I'm thirsty now.

Edward replying to Taylor: I know. (Wink wink)

A lot of comments were wishing for Edward's well-being, and little was about the drink itself. The video was then shared to MTV, and a few talk show programs – after the broadcaster negotiated with Entertain company. 

The legal department of the company had to be doubled to handle the extra workload brought by the Instagram app, the Whatsapp app, and also his album sales. 

Not only that, the company itself expanded quite rapidly after the development of the new apps, tripling the numbers of employees in their departments l.

However, before Harvey could finish her work for the day, an unexpected – yet a bit expected guest visited the company.

The man who looked a little like Ryan Reynolds flashed his badge to the security at the main entrance to the building and said, "FBI Agent Wayne Bruce. I came here to see Mrs Harvey Spectre."

The security guards looked at each other before deciding that the matter was outside of their pay grade and contacted Harvey for instruction.

Harvey sipped the refreshing Rosella Green Grape drink and ordered, "Let him in."

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