It wasn’t even five in the morning when I arrived at the God Complex. The sun was going to be up in about two hours. Meanwhile, it had been down for about the same amount of time back in Boston. All this immortality, and we’re still susceptible to jet lag. What’s even the point?
True to their word, Jude and Melissa had packed me a huge suitcase full of a week’s worth of supplies while we waited for the pizza to arrive. The rest of the group didn’t even let me change out of my protest Kigurumi. They kept me downstairs so that I couldn’t try to get out of my mandatory vacation time. The moment we were all done with dinner, the gang shoved the suitcase into my hands and shoved me out the door. They even locked it behind me. They were a hundred percent serious about this whole thing.
So once I could find a relatively empty public bathroom, I teleported my way to the GC. My week of forced vacation had officially begun.
Walking through the front door, I realized that I had no clue where I was supposed to go. I’d only spent time in the lounge, on the battlefield, in the garden, and a little bit of time in Eros and Clio’s place. I didn’t even know how many floors this enormous place had, let alone which one I should go to. I shouldn’t go to Eros and Clio. With the twins, they need all the sleep they can get.
There’s gotta be a directory somewhere around here. I scanned the first-floor lobby until I saw the long, three-columned list posted on the wall. There. I rolled my way over the list and started dragging my eyes over it, starting at the first floor and looking for anything that would be useful.
10th floor. Human Resources. Human is a bit of a misnomer, but it’s probably my best option. Ophelia…I don’t think that’s someone in the family. Not unless someone got busy again. Then again, that’s not exactly out of the realm of possibility. Still, even if they are immortal, I doubt they’re gonna be up at this hour. I guess I gotta go kill some time in the lounge. What the hell am I gonna do for four or five hours? If they’d let me take my work laptop, I could’ve at least kept myself busy that way. If I could stay awake. I’m fucking exhausted. Oh, well. I guess I’m napping in the lounge tonight.
I started to turn and head toward the lounge with a heavy sigh, but something caught my eye. The contents of the twenty-first floor were denoted with a temporary sticker rather than the semi-permanent letters that the other floor descriptions had. And that sticker had my name on it. Do they already have a floor for me? Were they expecting me? It wasn’t impossible. In a family of immortals, psychic abilities were par for the course depending upon who it was. Still, I couldn’t help but be surprised that they’d already prepared an entire floor for me when they couldn’t even be sure that I was coming to stay any time soon. I hadn’t even known until an hour beforehand. How could they? And what did they even put on my floor?
I had to see for myself. Maybe I would get some answers.
I trudged to the elevator, dragging my rolling suitcase. Once the doors opened, I pressed the button for the twenty-first floor. As fast as the elevator was moving, it felt like it took forever to take me to my destination. The anticipation was killing me.
Finally, with a ding, the twenty-first-floor button clicked off, and the doors slid open.
Stepping out of the elevator and into darkness, the only light in the room was coming from the light of the waxing moon. The glow that came through the entire wall of windows showed glimpses and silhouettes of a clean carpet with relatively new, modern-styled furniture.
Where the fuck is the light? I blindly felt along the wall until I found a light switch to the left.
LED lights illuminated this first room—a living room with an eat-in kitchen. The floor was dark hardwood, and there was a thick, beige area rug in the seating area. A white loveseat with matching armchairs circled a perfectly square, glass coffee table. The television across from the couch was absurdly large. Any American man would drool at the idea of watching the Superbowl on that screen. Two dark-stained bookshelves flanked the screen. They were filled with books, DVDs, some pottery and other decorative knick-knacks to give the place a bit of character. Not necessarily my character, but character.
The kitchen was out of any housewife’s dream; dark, granite countertops with flecks of gold shimmering in the lamplight. The stainless steel oven, microwave, and refrigerator were cutting edge and state-of-the-art. There was both a regular coffee maker and one of those one-cup coffee makers. There was even a tea kettle. And all of this was framed in beige cabinets and a bronze sink.
There was a note on the front of the fridge being held up by a God Complex emblem magnet. The stationary was quite nice and sported an “O” at the top to give some kind of hint as to who left it.
Welcome home! I’m the director of Human Resources here at the God Complex. Your brother and sister-in-law let me know that you had come home and asked that I get your floor prepared for you with the essentials. If this setup is not to your liking, you can come talk to me on the tenth floor, and we can set to redecorating your apartment. We want you to be comfortable here, and we want you to make this place your own. Don’t hesitate to come see me if you have any questions or concerns. That’s what I’m here for.
There were a lot of thoughts and emotions coming through because of this note. Too many to count. It had only been about sixteen hours since I had come back to the complex fuming over how Eros had interfered with the Revolt Project’s protest at the Harvard Museum of Natural History. And now I was being shown just how much that asshole loved me in his trickster way. Of course, Clio probably made sure that he didn’t go crazy with the requests. If Eros had just gotten his way, there would probably be a sex swing in the bedroom…
Now that I think about it, I should probably make sure there isn’t a sex swing in there. I left Ophelia’s note on the counter and made my way down the narrow hallway. I clicked on another light switch, revealing three closed doors in the hallway; one on the left, one on the right, and one at the very end of the hall. Well, the far one is probably the bedroom. But what are the other two? The sex swing could wait. I needed to see what other damage Eros had done.
I checked the room on the left first. The moment I opened the door, I could tell by the atmosphere that it was a bathroom. It was just a simple half bathroom with a standing water basin sink and a round mirror that doubled as a cabinet. Nothing too special or crazy.
The door on the right side of the hallway was even less impressive. It was empty. Ophelia’s note on the door was fair warning of that though.
Your brother and sister-in-law couldn’t agree on what this extra room should be. Clio thought you should have an office, but Eros wanted you to have a sex dungeon. I ultimately decided to leave it blank until you come to me with your specific requests. Think about what you want for this room as well as the rest of the apartment. This is your home away from home. So make it your own.
I had to roll my eyes when I read Eros’s suggestion. Will that man ever learn? But even the ridiculousness of me having a sex dungeon couldn’t outlast the echoing impact of Ophelia’s last words. Make it your own.
What do I even do with that? I couldn’t remember the last time I had my own room. During the gods’ hay days, I pretty much exclusively lived in a tent next to my father’s. We were on the road and fighting wars so much that the only reason I had a stationary room on Mount Olympus was for when mom forced me to take a break. After we lost our influence in the world, I kept traveling, trying to find my place in this new world without my family.
That place turned out to be Boston. I’ve lived there ever since. I either rented a property from someone else, limiting my decoration options, or I lived in hostels and houses with multiple people. Even if I owned the Revolt House, I still shared it with the gang. I couldn’t monopolize any space.
How do I make any place my own?
The dull glow of the sun rising over the horizon triggered a yawn to seep from my lungs. I can’t do anything until I get some sleep, I reminded myself. I turned away from the blank space room to the door at the end of the hallway. By process of elimination, that was my bedroom. A California king-size bed was dressed in pure white, Egyptian cotton sheets that glowed with the dawn light shining through the wall of windows. The view was gorgeous, but I wasn’t going to get any sleep with the light peaking through. So I drew the curtains. That was the last thing I did before collapsing onto the bed, still fully clothed. I don’t remember impacting the mattress.