33 – Understated Dominance

This entry is part 33 of 259 in the series 1st
Chapter 33

An Understated Dominance 

by Marina Vittori
Chapter 33

“You must be kidding, right, Dad? This can’t be aged wine!” James‘ eyes were wide as dinner plates.

“Look at how yellowish it looks, though. It must be fake!” Florence accused.

“You guys must not have seen brews like this before. Aged craft brews get this color, and it only darkens the longer it’s been aging. Every wine connoisseur knows this.”

The looks on everyone’s faces quickly changed. Their accusations had just been dampened significantly, not by just anyone but by John Nicholson himself, a well- known wine enthusiast. His judgment couldn’t be wrong.

“I was blessed to be able to try such a fine wine years ago with a government official, but this brew right here must be finer than the one I had that body and finish tell me it must’ve been aged for at least 50 years!” John smacked his lips, still enjoying the brew’s aftertaste. ?

“How much would it cost on the market?” James asked curiously.

“It’s priceless. You couldn’t find a willing seller even if you offered a city’s worth. But if we judge based on recent wine auction values, it should cost at least two million dollars,”

“Two million?!” Everyone gasped. They’ve never even heard of wine that costs this much! Chris‘ Grand Cru was nothing compared to that!

“N–no way!” Florence refused to believe it. “Are you sure about this, John? How could Dustin be able to afford this?”

“Yeah! He can’t even afford a nice pair of pants, not to mention something this expensive!” James cried. His argument brought forth the table’s resounding agreement.

“He has a point. How could that vagrant have that much money?”

“Hmm… where did you get this brew, Dustin?” John asked gently.

“A friend gave it to me,” he answered truthfully.

“Gave it to you?” Florence scowled. “How could someone like you have friends rich enough to buy a drink like that? Even if they did, why would they give it to you in the first place? I bet you stole it from them!‘

“Yeah, he must’ve stolen it!” James nodded vigorously, finding a new accusation to slap Dustin with. He refused to believe Dustin could afford this sort of quality wine, whether or not it was given to him by a friend.

“Why did you have to steal this of all things, Dustin? Do you know how many years you’ll have to spend in prison for theft?” Chris huffed, appearing to be considerate.

How could that pauper have gotten a hold of something not even he could.

“Whether you believe me or not doesn’t matter to me. I didn’t steal it, and that’s enough for me,” Dustin droned.

First, they called his wine cheap. Then, after revealing it wasn’t, they find another accusation of him having stolen it. Next, they would just say he blackmailed Natasha into giving it to him.

That’s why there was no use explaining to them further.

“Hah, see? Where’s your excuse now? I knew you stole this!” Florence screeched.

“You thief! I can’t believe you stole this just to look good in front of us!” James gasped, playing along.

“Whatever. I got this wine for Granddad and Granddad only, so you guys don’t have to drink any if you don’t want to!” Dustin rolled his eyes. He had had enough of this crap.

“Enough, all of you! I trust Dustin with my whole heart, and I know he didn’t steal this wine, so stop it!” Henry finally ground out.

“But Granddad…

“Be quiet! Eat your food!” the old man ordered once again. Only then did everyone shut up.
Even Florence and James, who still didn’t believe he could have lawfully gotten his hands on the craft brew.

Dinner finally began. Even though everyone had their turn at smearing Dustin’s name, they still gladly took their share of the craft brew. Even those who didn’t drink alcohol tried a few sips.

After all, this brew cost over two million dollars on the market, a precious delicacy they had never had the luck to try before. Why pass on the opportunity?

Dustin could only snort at how stubborn this family of people was.

Dinner soon came to an end.

An Understated Dominance by Marina Vittori

Status: Ongoing

Type: Urban/Realistic

Author: Marina Vittori

Artist: Dahlia Nicholson and Dustin Rhys

Released: July, 9, 2023

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