He's majestic; there's no other word to describe him. Even as he sits still, his power is evident. The look he passed around the room, like a predator with its prey, sent shivers down the spines of all who gathered there. His presence in the small room was overwhelming, and a waft of nervous energy scented the air.
If this were a different time, another place, he would've been a king sitting at his council or a warrior directing his troops before heading into battle. Such is the way he carried himself, as if he were a head above all those around him, both literally and figuratively speaking.
Men feared and revered him, while women flocked to him like moths to a flame. It's that aura of mystique that surrounds him, the strength that emanates from him with his every move. He has such a way about him, an essence that commands the admiration of both men and women.
Each man now avoided his glare. They'd learned in the short while since he's been here what folly awaits any who think themselves bold enough or strong enough to square off with him. So none dared look into those eyes, eyes that convey much without speaking. Those eyes can spell disaster, or warm the coldest heart, according to the mood he's in.
His look could be deemed one of beauty if such a soft flowery word could be applied to a man of such obvious masculinity and strength. But anyone would be hard-pressed to find a more fitting word to describe him. There isn't one. Though he oftentimes wishes it were so. He'd long given up trying to get people to quit describing him in those terms like he was a damn female.
His looks are the first thing people whisper about wherever he goes. Long before anyone sees what lies beneath all that perfection, they're usually taken in by his appearance. Something he'd learned to live with and had even come to appreciate since it kept others from seeing the real him too soon. Who would believe that the model handsome Ivy League graduate was anything but what he appeared to be?
Dark shoulder-length hair tied neatly at his nape into a ponytail, with not a strand out of place. High, perfectly formed brows and the most beautiful green eyes that shone with some inner light no man could account for sat above a chiseled and well-defined jawline.
His dimpled cheeks coupled with the cleft in his chin just spared him from being beautiful and instead made him the most handsome man in any given room. It was hard, even for his enemies, at first sight, to look away. And most were left wondering how anyone could be so perfect, not only in face but in form. Plastic surgery was their best guess, but leaked photos from his youth showed the same unnatural beauty.
Those who met him after hearing of his reputation could never reconcile the two. He looked like he belonged in a boardroom somewhere, what with his air of sophistication and his penchant for getting things done in even the most impossible situations.
It has caused many to underestimate his true essence to their own detriment because they fell for that veneer of gentlemanliness he used like a weapon. Like a cobra that strikes when least expected, so is he. They never see him coming, and some unsuspecting souls had bled out at his feet by the time they realized just what it was they were dealing with, and all because they'd been deceived by his appearance.
So, it was easy to see why the men in the room had once mistaken him for just another city slicker with more money than sense when he first appeared. They'd relaxed their guard, secure in the knowledge that the wet behind the ears son of their previous boss would be easy to manipulate; they'd been worried for nothing.
He'd ignored the looks that passed between them, guessing accurately at the thoughts in their heads. It was his way always, to give his prey a false sense of safety. To a man, he was sure they saw him as a pretty face simpleton that they could easily walk all over. That usually lasted for as long as it took some idiot to piss him off.
Now he sat at the head of the table where more than a few of the men that waited outside had wished to be before his arrival, more sour grapes. Beneath the short sleeves of the black silk, tee was revealed even more of his beauty, in the form of his well-defined muscular arms that were now folded across his chest with the tattoos that told a story on full display.
His thighs were also well-formed beneath the black leather of his pants, making for one hell of a gorgeous beast at six foot three inches tall. But more than his face and body, it was his relaxed pose, legs outstretched, and the one-finger playing across his lip that added that air of sophisticated savagery.
Those who knew him could only guess at what was the real him, let alone a group of unknowns that he'd only just met. They were still trying to figure him out, something that would never happen because he wanted it so. He hadn't set out in the beginning to have the rep he now carried, but over the years, it has kept him in good stead.
The room had been silent for the last few minutes while he sat in contemplation. No one dared utter a word before he did; no one wanted that type of attention drawn to themselves. They'd all learned in the last few days not to even get close to the tiger, let alone pull his tail. When he finally spoke, there was an audible sound of relief.
“How many times is this now that he's been warned?" His voice, though calm and unhurried, sent a ding of warning to those in the room that the beast was not to be trusted. That slow drawl they'd come to learn hid the sharpness of a wasp's sting.
“Three at my count, boss." That finger ran across his lip again, and a calculating gleam came into his eyes. “Bring him in." Chair legs scraped across the floor as his men jumped to do his bidding. Those of his dad's men that he'd allowed to sit in on the meeting were stiff as a plank of wood, wondering what spectacle they were about to witness
They were pondering even more the question of why their old boss had never told them the truth about his son. This was no city-raised, educated idiot like they'd expected. And days after his arrival, they were still coming to grips with the surprises that kept on coming.
The boy never seemed to stop, and with each move, he was steadily dismantling the life they'd built here. For some, this was a good thing and a most welcomed change, but for others, it was anything but. They didn't need some suit who knew next to nothing about the life stepping on their toes, but no matter what moves they made, the plebe always seemed to be two steps ahead of them.
Most of the old crew could only stand around outside waiting for the outcome as the newcomers ran the show. It's been this way ever since they showed up, and so far, there is never a dull moment. No one told them anything anymore; they had to learn what was going on through gossip and listening in on conversations that had nothing to do with them.
It wasn't like the old days when the boss treated them all equally and with respect. This son of his didn't seem to trust anyone, except for the men he'd brought along with him, which was bound to make things hard for some of the old crew who were accustomed to being in on whatever was going on in the chapter.
There were murmurs and grumbles when they caught wind of what today's meet was about, and some were even brave enough to let their displeasure be known out loud, their voices carrying into the room where the beast as they'd come to think of him, sat waiting.
That's the name they'd collectively given him within days of knowing him. Not because of any beastly thing he'd done; he's too smooth for that. But it was the way he moved and that air about him, like a tiger ready to strike. Then there's the way he turns his head to look at you, and those eyes that burn with displeasure whenever he looks your way as if he could see inside your head, read your true thoughts even as you smiled in his face.
Within the first few days, the name had stuck, and they'd learned to walk carefully in the presence of the young man. There was a lot of rethinking to be done since things weren't looking quite the way they'd expected. It seemed more to them that he was there to get rid of most of them than to run things in place of his old man like they'd thought was the case.
Life around here has been tense since the first of them tried and failed to overstep. It was then they saw his true mettle, then they learned that he might be more than they assumed. His coldness left them stymied as they each wondered secretly who was next? How soon before he turns that scalpel-sharp gaze their way.
Now another of their own seemed to be heading for the chopping block, and so their words were a little harsh in their anger. The scent of fear was heavy in the air as they wondered who was next and when it would end. At this rate, no one would be here next week. And since when was it anyone's business what another man did with what's his? This last was said especially loud so that the man himself would hear.
He didn't move, didn't acknowledge in any way that he'd heard or that he even cared. He tapped his finger on the table nonchalantly as he waited for his team to return with his prey.