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The CEO and the Pepsi Girl

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The CEO and the Pepsi Girl

It was a late Saturday afternoon, and the 9-year-old actress Hallie Kate Eisenberg was trying to escape through a swarm of adoring matinée-goers at the American Airlines Theater in Times Square, where she currently co-starred as Little Mary in Claire Booth Luce's The Women.

"Oh, sweetie, you were adorable!" a gray-haired woman cried upon spying Ms. Eisenberg. She looked as if she wanted to pinch one of the four-foot-tall actress's dimpled cheeks and give it a grandmotherly twist.

Ms. Eisenberg, who was wearing a flouncy giraffe-print jacket and a matching hat that sat upon her flowing dark brown curls, thanked the woman and pushed onward. Reaching a back door, she stepped outside and skipped down 43rd Street to a Ben & Jerry's, where she ordered her usual: mint chocolate cookie in a cone, with rainbow sprinkles. When it came, she reached into her purse and pulled out a five-dollar bill, which she placed on the counter before picking up her ice cream cone.

That was when it happened.

"Is that the Pepsi girl?"

Hallie turned to see the owner of the voice, and saw him sitting next to her. He was wearing black slacks and a long sleeved black shirt that was without buttons and had a bit of a turtleneck. The belt around his waist had a beveled engraving of KC.

The main piece was a large flowing purple colored trenchcoat with pronounced shoulders, wide arms, and long flowing bottom.

He also wore a pair of steel cuffs about the forearms. On his feet were very high black boots with a slightly raised heel in the back.

It was then that her dark brown eyes widened as he smirked.

"Seto Kaiba," he purred. "And you are-?"

"Hallie Kate Eisenberg," she replied.

Kaiba studied her with his intense sapphire gaze. It was as though he was Humbert Humbert from the 1997 film Lolita, which he had seen a few weeks ago, and she was Dolores Haze, aka Lolita, the title character.

Oblivious to the intense cobalt gaze trained on her - the gaze that belonged to the man sitting next to her - Hallie simply turned to her mint chocolate cookie cone. She began licking at it, her crimson-red tongue darting in and out of her mouth, and her ruby lips often coming apart to take a bite of the ice cream.

On a long and lonesome highway,
East of Omaha
You listen to the engines
Moanin' out its one old song
You think about the woman,
Or the girl you knew the night before

But your thoughts will soon be wanderin'
The way they always do
When you're ridin' 16 hours,
and there's nothin' much to do
And you don't feel much like ridin',
You just wish the trip was through

Here I am, on the road again,
There I am, up on the stage
There I go, playin' star again,
There I go, turn the page

As the notes from the song Turn the Page by Metallica flowed from the speakers, Kaiba couldn't help but look at the beautiful child star.

The clothes she was wearing, in his opinion, enhanced her beauty. Her face, framed by dark chocolate locks, was really enchanting, as were her dark brown eyes.

She will be a real heartbreaker someday.

Instantly, he growled mentally at the thought, and his cobalt eyes immediately narrowed. Luckily for him, this went unnoticed by Hallie, as she was very busy eating her ice cream.

Gazing intently out to a mysterious world. Waiting for an enchantment to being. She is my China Doll.

Her beauty is fragile, never to be touched by human hands. Never to be seen by human eyes. She is delicate, my China Doll.

As the sentences from the poem China Doll by Jacie Rae flew through his brain and then settled there like a robin, Kaiba couldn't help but smirk secretly. To him, Hallie sure was something special.

So you walk into this restaurant,
all strung out from the road
And you feel the eyes upon you,
as you're shakin' off the cold
You pretend it doesn't bother you,
but you just want to explode

Yeah, most times you can't hear ‛em talk,
other times you can
Oh, the same old clichés: "Is it woman? Is it man?"
And you always seem outnumbered,
you don't dare make a stand
Make your stand

"Hallie."

Having finished her ice cream cone and wiped her fingers and mouth clean with a napkin, Hallie then turned to Kaiba. "Yes?"

Kaiba smiled. Then he got off the bar stool he had been sitting on, stepped up to her until he was 3 feet away, and then bent down so that he was looking up into her eyes. "You know, a young lady like yourself can be quite... charming."

Hallie blinked. Charming? she thought. Now that's a new one. I've never been called that before.

As she looked down at her hands, Kaiba got to his feet, and then walked a few feet away from her. He was now quiet, and seemed to be musing over some things. Then, he turned back to her, and offered her his hand.

"Come with me, Hallie," he purred.

Hallie looked at the hand that was now in her line of vision. She was experiencing an inner struggle with her conscience. She knew she was a sucker for adventure and drama, among other things. But this... well, this took the cake, at least in her opinion.

Finally, having made up her mind, she got off the stool, reached up and put her hand in his. Then, they walked out the door.

To passers-by, they looked like a big brother and his little sister out for a walk. But Hallie thought it was so much more than that. She thought it was something different.

Better.

And yet, she knew that all those Pepsi commercials she had starred in could not have prepared her for something like this. Or an encounter with a character she had never met previously.

But one thing was for sure in her mind.

Life was full of surprises.

Here I am, on the road again,
there I am, up on the stage
Here I go, ah playin' star again,
there I go, turn the page

Out there in the spotlight,
you're a million miles away
Every ounce of energy,
you try and give away
As the sweat pours out your body,
like the music that you play

Later in the evenin',
as you lie awake in bed
With the echoes of the amplifiers,
ringin' in your head
You smoke the day's last cigarette,
rememberin' what she said

What she said

Yeah

Here I am on the road again,
There I am, up on that stage
Here I go, playin' star again,
There I go, turn the page

And there I go, turn that page

There I go, yeah
Here I go, yeah, yeah
There I go, yeah,
Here I go, yeah
Here I go-oh-o,
There I go

And I'm gone