After a few more days, Drew is getting used to the routine he has at the orphanage. Of course, he is still very bored. Solidad had called to check up on him as well as congratulate him on surviving without complaints. Betty has been clinging around him more, like she'll talk to him during lunch.
He's also been eating the lunch recently because he's getting used to it. Plus, it's a warmer meal than the microwavables he's been eating. May is slightly nicer to him, but she's usually too busy with the other orphans and paperwork to interact with him; hence, leaving him in Betty's care.
On this particular day, May sends Drew, Betty, and a teenage boy out to get groceries for the orphanage. Betty introduces the 16 year old boy as Tyler, and Drew recognizes him as the one who almost hopped into the fight. Tyler doesn't say much. He has his hoodie up over his head as he just focuses on the task.
"Yeah, Tyler doesn't talk a lot, but he's very helpful and responsible!" Betty tells Drew as she helps him pick the correct groceries. Tyler is off getting fruits and vegetables.
"Cool." Drew responds. He's used to Betty's constant talking by now, but with nothing else to do, he just listens.
"He may seem like he doesn't like you, but he's very nice. He always helps May as much as he can. One time, this angry kid came into the orphanage and hit May, so Tyler beat him up." Betty then sheepishly laughs. "But May got in a lot of trouble because the government thought she allowed us orphans to fight, so now Tyler watches what he does."
"Seems like a good kid." Drew mumbles while grabbing the pasta.
"Did you know, May is an orphan like us?"
"Hm?" Drew really could care less; however, he doesn't have the heart to tell Betty to stop talking.
"Yeah. Apparently she's been here since she was 5, but I don't know her story. No one asks each other why we're at the orphanage, but some people just tell, like me."
"Okay." Drew nods as they're checking out their items. Betty, of course, has the card to pay, and soon, the three make the trek back to the orphanage.
Later, as Drew is sweeping the lobby, a thought comes to his head. He looks at Betty. "You said no one asks why others are here, but how come you asked me why I'm here?"
She looks up from her homework and shrugs. "You're not an orphan, so it's not a painful reason you're here."
"How would you know that? I could be an orphan, which is why I'm volunteering here."
"Because everyone knows you're Drew Hayden of Hayden Corporation." she then looks back at her homework and Drew chuckles while resuming his sweeping. Betty is pretty good company.
Since Drew has finished his tasks early for the day, he decides to head out to the back to check it out. He hasn't had a chance to fully explore the orphanage, not like he would want to. The backyard is full of grass and one small area of concrete for a basketball hoop.
"Can you play with me?" a little blonde girl asks him.
Drew smiles as he looks down in her pleading green eyes. "Sure." It beats having to sit around and wait to leave. The girl is 8, and her name is Helena, but she wants to be called Helen. Drew plays house with her and 2 other girls around her age. Normally, he wouldn't enjoy something like this, but he's bored.
"You know you've been off the clock for an hour now, right?" the voice shakes him from his thoughts as he looks up to see May holding Benny. She tells the children to head inside for dinner and hands off Benny to one of the older kids.
Drew Hayden doesn't get startled, though, so he flicks his hair as he stands up. "Maybe I just wanted to see you."
Sighing, she turns around to walk back inside. "We talked about the sexual harassment."
He chuckles as he runs up to walk beside her. "It's not sexual harassment if I like you right?"
She blushes but remains cool headed. "I don't think that matters, Drew."
Once they're inside, Drew notices the kids are eating steamed vegetables and stir fried beef. The aroma makes his mouth water as he hasn't had a home cooked meal in a while. Betty had mentioned how May and the older kids will cook dinner since the government only provides lunches.
Noticing the man eyeing the food, May giggles. "You can stay for dinner, Drew."
He gives her a grateful smile before running off to grab a plate of his own. It's probably from the lack of a good meal in a while, but he loves this food. May laughs while sitting next to him, which makes him give her an annoyed look. "I've never seen you ever finish food here before."
Shrugging, he says, "That lunch mush is disgusting."
"Well, that's all they can really eat." she sadly responds, which earns her a curious look from him. "The city continues to limit funding for us, Drew." She then narrows her eyes at him. "And don't even think of trying to bribe me out of working again."
He chuckles while raising his hands up in defense. "I can't even do that if I wanted to." Sighing, Drew looks at the orphans enjoying their dinner. "My parents cut me off until I'm done here."
"That's why you always buy frozen food." May nods understandably now. Drew sheepishly rubs the back of his neck since he isn't proud of his new food situation. "I can teach you how to cook if you want to stay for dinner duty? Then you can come in later."
As much as Drew likes to finish his work and get out of here, he is sick of frozen meals. "If you just want to spend more time with me, you can say it, May." He smirks.
This makes her roll her eyes at him, but when she says, "Okay. Guess not."
He quickly tells her, "Thank you! I'll switch my hours!"
May giggles at the arrogant man. He always wants to come off as needed and independent, but so far, it's been him needing something from her. Since she's done eating, she gets up. "See you tomorrow, Drew." she smiles before leaving him.
Drew can't help but grin on his walk to his apartment because he feels so relaxed. Being rich, he's always felt like he had to put on this facade to the world, which also helps him avoid being taken advantage of. People would swoon at his looks and confidence, but the orphanage treats him like a normal person. He doesn't feel judged at all by them, and it's nice to relax for once. Maybe this year won't be so bad.
After about a good month at the orphanage, Drew has learned how to make simple dishes. He's growing comfortable with life there, and the orphans are accepting of him, for the most part. May has allowed him to interact with them more, but he still has chores to complete. Speaking of May, the two still bicker, but it's more playful now than serious. Since spring break had ended, most of the orphans are gone for school during the day, which just leaves Drew, May, and Benny.
During this particular day, Drew finishes cleaning rather early. He's been finishing the tasks quicker since there aren't as many kids around during the day to make a mess. Plus, May hangs out with Benny most of the time, which leaves Drew with a lot of free time. He decides to go check if she wants him to do anything else. Despite being a wealthy playboy, Drew knows when he needs to complete tasks, which makes him an efficient businessman.
When he walks to the lobby, he hears Benny crying. Knocking on the door to the office makes May call him in where he sees a bawling Benny in her arms as she tries to bounce him. "What happened?" Drew asks her.
"Sometimes Benny will get fussy." sighs the brunette, and when Benny extends his arms out to Drew, May drops him in the man's embrace. "Can you take him? I need to finish these taxes."
It is now that Drew sees how stressed out May is. She does so much for this orphanage, and only has the assistance of the older kids. Nodding, Drew says, "Okay. We'll go for a walk." He then takes the fussy toddler out where Benny begins to calm down in his arms.
Eventually, Benny falls asleep during the walk, so Drew takes the boy to his crib. There are a few rooms in the orphanage, and each room has about 2 bunk beds. Betty had also mentioned that May sleeps at the orphanage in case the children have any problems during the night. Her room is usually locked as it is the only single bedroom in the building.
After tucking the boy into the crib, Drew sits on the ground exhausted. These rooms only have beds and shelves for furniture. They're small, way smaller than his little studio apartment. He chuckles to himself as he remembers complaining about his small apartment while these kids share this small room with 3 others. Gosh, he's so self centered.
His phone vibrating shakes him from his thoughts and he sees May is calling. Quietly stepping out of the room he picks up.
"Where are you?"
"Benny's room. He fell asleep."
"Okay. I'll be right there." the call ends, and soon, he sees her walking down the hallway. Smiling up at him, she says, "Thanks for doing that."
He smirks as he flicks his hair. "I can do more for you."
Unfortunately, May doesn't understand the dirty reference as she tells him, "Can you wipe down the toys? It's allergy season, and the kids keep sneezing on them."
Ruffling her hair, he laughs. "Okay, boss."
"Just call me May."
Drew chuckles again as he walks away. "Okay, May."
As the students focus on their homework, Drew and May cook dinner. Fortunately, he's a quick learner, so he's figured out a lot of things from the past month. Also, it's given him more time to hang out with May, who he realizes isn't so bad. She cares deeply for the orphans, and just wants to protect them from any pain, which is why she didn't want him near them at first.
"You're getting better." May compliments his chopped onions.
Winking at her, Drew says, "Thanks."
"Give me some credit. I did teach you."
"But I'm a great student. You can even check out my transcripts." flaunts the man.
Rolling her eyes, May replies, "Good grades don't necessarily mean you're smart."
"That's what those who got bad grades say."
"Actually, I was at the top of my class." she smirks while grabbing the cutting board from him to toss in the onions. When she walks back to put the cutting board in the sink, she hits the knife on the counter and it falls to the ground. Fortunately, Drew pulls her to the side so they both avoid the sharp object.
"That was close." He breathes out a sigh of relief as the woman in his arms blushes.
"Can you let me go?"
As if realizing she's still in his embrace, Drew quickly releases her as he jumps away. Normally, Drew Hayden would make a snarky comment, but his heart is beating too quickly for that. He opts to turn away as he hides his own slight blush. Picking up the knife to gently put in the sink, he says, "Sorry."
May is surprised to hear him apologize because he has never said that before nor has he ever thanked anyone. "It's fine. Thanks for uh, saving me again." She sweat drops.
"Just make sure to tell the courts about what a good job I'm doing." he grins, which makes her heart skip a beat. Gosh. Why is her body reacting to this arrogant man like this?
"Drew! Someone is here to see you!" Betty exclaims as she runs into the kitchen to see the two blushing adults. "Were you guys kissing?" Her mischevious grin makes May run over to her and push her out of the kitchen.
"No we were not, Betty!" the woman quickly replies. She then heads back into the kitchen while the chuckling Drew follows Betty. He likes seeing the embarrassed May. She's a lot more fun, and it makes him feel more carefree. When Betty leads him to the lobby, he is surprised to see Solidad.
"Thank you, Betty." Solidad smiles at the girl who nods back before continuing her homework at the counter.
Drew walks over with confusion. "What are you doing here?"
Solidad grins at him as she pulls out her tablet. "We managed to get a new deal! Since you helped out with that incident last month, and there have been no complaints, the courts agreed to lower your community service to 6 months! I mean, you'll have to keep doing a great job without complaints, but you'll be done in half the time now!"
If Solidad had come to him about this a month ago, he would've been excited, but why is Drew finding it so hard to smile now? Does he want to leave? He does miss having people cater to him and having money to spend as he pleads. Plus, walking everywhere is such a drag.
"Drew?" Solidad's voice shakes him from his thoughts and he gives her his usual smirk.
"Great." he tells her as his chest aches. Is it really great?
"Aw. I'll miss you, Drew!" Betty chimes in from behind the counter, which just makes his heart ache some more.
He shoots her a warm smile before returning his attention to Solidad. "I'll be good." he reassures his friend who nods.
"I hope so, Drew. Anyway, I need to head back to the office, but I wanted to see how you were doing. You look different."
"How?" It's only been a month. What could've changed about him?
Solidad puts a finger to her chin as she narrows her eyes at him. He looks different, but she can't pinpoint what it is. "You seem less reckless."
Drew chuckles at his friend. "What does that mean?" How can someone look less reckless? Besides, Drew doesn't consider himself reckless. He just enjoys life.
Shrugging, Solidad puts the tablet away. "See ya, Drew!" she gives him a hug before leaving.
As Drew turns back to head into the dining area, Betty eyes him suspiciously. "Is she your girlfriend?"
"I don't think you're allowed to ask me that." he knowingly tells the teen.
"Well, you shouldn't date multiple women at once."
Drew ruffles her hair as he smirks at her. "She's just a friend. I don't have girlfriends. They're too needy." He then walks back into the dining area where he helps May serve dinner.