A week has passed and the ambience around the house was still tense. Dad, Max and Robert stayed in Dad's study most of the time; meetings after meetings were held in private, me, Mom and Alex excluded. I barely met them twice at dinner this week, but the heavy aura around them didn't excite me for my queries.
Though I was born and raised in a mafia family, I was totally kept away from their dark world all my life; the same went with Mom and Alex. It was not that they were interested in it anyway. And nor was I. I myself wanted to do nothing with the mafia activities.
But in situations like these, I wanted to know what was happening around me. Only if they would let me. For my father and brother, I was too fragile and innocent to get myself tangled with the underworld issues.
And that's why I was currently standing next to the door of Dad's study. Another closed meeting was running inside and I was eager to know even some bits of the situation looming ominously over us.
Eavesdropping wasn't a great thing to do, but I had no choice.
And thankfully, unlike back in our farmhouse where we went to spend the weekend, there wasn't any soundproof system installed in this house. But their conversation still came out hushed due to the closed door, causing me to press my ear against it to get a better grip on their words.
"-gotta be kidding me! How did this happen, Robert? You couldn't even hold him for some days? He was our only source of getting information! How did he escape?!" Max bellowed. I could imagine his veins popping at the both sides of his temples, with his face crimson with rage.
"I don't know. When I got there, he was gone," Robert replied, his stable tone indicating that he was least swayed by Max's temper.
But who are they talking about?
"It's not good. We didn't get any information out of him yet. He could be a significant lead for us to reach him." Dad's voice was laced with disappointment. "What were the guards doing when he escaped? Why didn't they stop him?"
"Two guards who were watching over him, were found dead outside his cell. And the others didn't see anything. Nobody knows how he managed to get out."
A low gasp left my mouth. Dead? Someone killed them?
I knew I shouldn't be so shocked. People in this business died everyday. But still, when the thought of their families came into my mind, I couldn't help but feel the sympathy and sadness that washed over me. Guilty too, because somehow my own family was responsible for their death.
A silence fell over. Nobody said anything for a moment, until Max opened his mouth.
"Fuck! I can't believe this! One man who was a captive in our cell for a week, kills two guards alone and no one notices him? What kind of security is that you've hired!"
"I think someone helped him with it. Maybe someone from the security guards. Because he was too weak from days of endless torture. He can't take two guards down all alone."
"Do you have any idea who that could be? Any suspect?" Dad asked.
"No, not yet. But I found something near the bodies," Robert said, evoking curiosity in me as I pressed myself harder against the door.
"A note? What note?" Dad's voice was full of uncertainty. "What did it say?"
Another silence fell inside for a moment.
"Robert, what did it say?" Max propelled.
My heart palpitated, waiting to know what was in that note.
"It said, he is coming for…"
"What're you doing here, Sofia?"
I jumped in fright at the sudden intrusion. Whirling around in a swift motion, I came face to face with Tim.
Tim was Dad's one of the most trusted men. When Robert was Dad's right hand, Tim worked for Dad as his left. And a father figure to me since my childhood.
His grey eyes watched me with query, while I fidgeted in my place.
"Uh, nothing!" I replied too quickly. "I came down to check on Mom, and then I saw Dad's study's light was on. So, I…"
"You were eavesdropping." It wasn't a question, it was a statement.
"No! I- I was just…" I stopped when a stern look claimed onto his features. There was no hiding now. I was blasted. "Fine! I was!" I blew out a frustrated breath. "But it's not my fault that no one ever feels the necessity of telling me anything. So I had to find a way to help myself."
He let out a sigh. "Sofia, we don't mean you to feel left out. But it's for your own good. We just don't want you to get involved and get hurt in the process. This is a dangerous world."
"I'm not telling you guys to let me join the gang. I don't even want to. But I wish to know if there is something that we all should be aware of, not only Dad and Max." I tried to put my points before him. Maybe, just maybe he will understand? "I know this attack wasn't just an attack. It was small, but there's something vast hidden behind it. And I want to know what it is. Don't you think keeping us in the dark wouldn't do any good? If we know everything, at least we can be more alert."
He seemed to consider my argument and I internally crossed my fingers. But when he shook his head and a look of apology crossed over his face, my hopes died down that instant.
"I'm sorry, Sofia. I wish I could help you with it. But I don't think your father would appreciate it if I told you anything without his permission. Whatever he does, is only for your own good," he said. "But for you, I can try to talk to him. But I can't make any promises though."
My shoulders slumped in defeat.
"At least, tell me who were they talking about? The man who escaped."
A little hesitation crossed over his eyes, but then he set his lips in a thin line, as if displeased of having to answer. But he did anyway. "He was the leader of the troop that was sent to attack on the farmhouse."
Leader? I thought our men killed everyone. So, they kept him alive so that they could get information from him. But sadly, he escaped. But who helped him? Who had the guts to go against Dad?
"Now that's it. Go out from here before your dad or Max catches you. They won't be very pleased to see you here," Tim warned.
I didn't argue. I knew he was right. And I didn't want another heavy lecture from Dad in his study.
So nodding my head, I turned around and left, with a chaotic jumble of left out bits of information running in my head.
My knuckles tapped softly against Mom and Dad's bedroom door as I waited outside for a response.
I wanted to check on Mom. After the attack, she hasn't been to herself. She just closed her off away from everything. She used to get those panic attacks whenever situations like these rose in the past. I didn't know why, but it affected her more than anyone else in the family. Though she has been doing good in the past years.
"Mom?" I knocked on the door again. I waited for a moment, but the only thing I was greeted with was silence.
And when I went to knock again, I heard her feeble voice.
Opening the door slowly, I let myself in.
She was rummaging through her closet. A lot of clothes were scattered across on her bed. She took some clothes out from the closet, unfolded them, then folded them again and kept them back in there.
She did this whenever she needed a distraction.
I shook my head.
"Mom, are you alright? You're doing this again." I put my hand on her shoulder.
She didn't say anything and kept folding one of Dad's shirts.
"Mom, are you blocking me out?" I asked, turning her around.
Her face was dull, dark circles shadowed underneath her eyes indicating her lack of sleep at night. "No sweetie, I was just… you know, how those things always affect me," she said, running her fingers through her dark brown locks, identical to mine.
I didn't say anything. I understood her state of mind.
Though it sounded insensitive, sometimes I wondered, why did Mom marry Dad despite knowing his way of living life?
I think I know the answer.
Love. It was for the immense love she had for my dad.
How could a person love someone else so much that they can cross every limit, every hurdle of life for the sake of their loved ones?
"You guys must be thinking how pathetic I'm, reacting like this even after experiencing these things before." A lone tear escaped her eyes. "I just don't want my family to get hurt, and a repeat of what happened in the past."
My heart clenched at her words.
"Mom, how could you imagine that we would think something like this about you? We understand Mom, we would never judge you for anything! Because we know how much you love us." My throat tightened as I blinked the sting away from my eyes. I hated her tears. It pained me to see her like this.
Get yourself together, Sofia! You've to be strong for her.
"And it can happen to anyone. No one is immune to things like these. But everyone has their own way of showing emotions. At least you react, not like Max who always roams around the house like a robot." I tried to joke to lighten up her mood, not that I was wrong though.
My lips stretched in a relieved smile seeing her in a better mood.
"Don't worry, Mom! Everything is fine now. Those attackers are dead. We're safe. And Dad and Max will handle the other things. After all, it's not the first time they're tackling situations like these. There's nothing to worry about, alright?"
She nodded, wiping her cheeks.
Smiling, I wrapped my arms around her small form and hugged her tightly, taking in her sweet scent.
"Alright! Now, go and let me clear this mess I created. Your dad wouldn't appreciate sleeping on this mess," saying, she pulled back from the hug.
I watched her closely. "You okay?"
Her mouth turned up into a soft smile. "I'm fine. Don't worry about me. Now go and let me do my work."
Nodding my head, I kissed her cheek and walked out of the room.
Lying flat on my back across the bed, my eyes stared far away at the star grazed sky. The white curtains fluttered with the gust of wind along the feathery dreamcatcher swaying with it. The curved moon peeked through the herd of gray clouds through the window, as if winking at me.
A tired sigh escaped through my lips. Even with this magical manifestation before me, my mind was swarmed with everything that was happening around me.
There were so many questions and confusions clouding over my head, but there was no one to float them away.
Like the attack happening all of a sudden after a long period of silence. And not just any other attack in the past, an attack quite too modest for a mafia leader. Though it still managed a buckle on my knees.
And that man? How did he escape among such strong security? Who helped him? And what about the note? What was in it?
Was my intuition right? That- that it was just a show? A trailer before the movie? But why now?
Is it- is it him?
A shiver ran down my spine at the mare thought of him.
No, no! It couldn't be him. He was dead!
Then who could it be?
I groaned. All this was giving me a headache. Too many questions and no answers at all.
I think I was thinking too much. Yes, these years were quite peaceful. But that didn't mean Dad had no enemies left. Maybe it was just one of them trying to provoke Dad?
Yes, that should be it. I shouldn't think about negative things too much.
Moving my thoughts from the attack, I glanced at the dreamcatcher.
A smile stretched across my lips. Nana gave it to me. I used to get nightmares in my childhood. So, she made it for me, saying it will capture the demons of my dreams and lull me to a peaceful sleep where it will be filled with only angels.
Though there were no angels, it did take the demons away and helped me get undisturbed sleep.
I missed her. I wished she was still with us. She was a little weird and quirky, but I loved her.
The door burst opened all of a sudden, and I rolled my eyes.
Only one person could barge into your room without any permission.
"Oh God! I'm so freaking tired!" Jumping on me, she huffed. "Your asshole of a brother doesn't let me off the hook until I make holes in my shoes attaining his orders!"
"Ugh! Get off of me!" Wincing, I pushed her aside and sat up. "You're not that light you think you're, you know that? And about my brother, it was you who decided to play kicking people's ass by joining the gang at the age of eighteen."
She sat upright, her amber eyes narrowed. "Firstly, I am light like a feather! Don't you see this figure of a goddess?"
I snorted at her statement, though she wasn't totally wrong about her figure.
"And second, I decided to join my father in the gang because I thought I could get some load off of his shoulders, not to take orders from that ass!"
"Are you sure there was no other reason behind it?" I wiggled my brows, my tone teasing.
Her lips went in a straight line as she glared at me, but the pink tint that amplified across her cheeks didn't go unnoticed. "Stop right there! Or else…"
"Is that blush I'm seeing, L?" I simpered, noticing my best friend turning red with anger and shyness.
"Sofia! If you don't stop right now, I'm leaving!"
"Alright, alright! I'm quiet." I motioned to zip my lips. "Don't need to get so riled up now."
"So, how's everything going? Your online exams are coming close, are you ready for that?" She changed the topic not so subtly.
It has been like that since our childhood. She had never accepted her crush on Max. Though her regular visits to our home along with her father, Robert, overnight stays and long stares at my brother was a screaming proof. And I didn't even know if he had any idea about it.
"Yeah, pretty much. And you know how everything is. There is nothing to say."
"Hmm…" she hummed. And then as if a bulb of her head suddenly turned on, she jumped out of the bed, her eyes wide with exhilaration. "Oh, God! I almost forgot why I came here in the first place!"
I eyed her wearily. Her enthusiasm like this always ended up bad.
"What is it?"
"We're going to a party!"
Ignoring her, I slumped back on my bed.
"What?" A frown marred her forehead. "Don't tell me you're not going."
"You're right, I'm not!"
"Oh, you can take your 'no' and shove it up your ass! We're going to this club I know this weekend, and that's final!"
I sighed, glancing at her. "L, you know Dad won't allow me to go. And definitely not in this situation."
Dad was extremely protective of me, and so was Max. They didn't let me out of the house without any of their company or loads of bodyguards. So letting me go to a club in this situation at night was out of the question.
I tried to tell them many times that I wasn't a kid anymore, I could keep myself safe. But my arguments turned unheard every time when it came to my safety. I knew it was for my own protection, but it became too much sometimes to even breathe.
"Oh, shoot the situation. It's not anything new anyway. And you're twenty-two for God's sake! You don't need any permission from your dad!" She was on the verge of stomping her feet. "You need to live a little, Sofia! Now you can't spend your whole life in this cell, can you?"
I shook my head. "You don't understand, L. It's not that easy. Situation isn't that simple anymore."
"Well, when was it?" She raised a brow.
"Listen, it's not that anyone knows who you're. So there is nothing to worry about. And it's not that you're going out without informing them for the first time, anyway."
Yes, I did it before. Quite a few times, when I just needed some time to breathe. And the aftermath of when Dad found out was another story.
And yes, no one knew I was Leonardo McCommer's daughter. Dad and Max made sure of it that no one knew I, Alex and mom were related to them. Even on occasions, if we went out as a family, like to the farmhouse, they made sure of secrecy. They erased every record or photograph of our past.
They don't even come home through the front door like normal people, they use the secret door in Dad's office. We've them in every one of our properties. So that people don't know of them being connected to us.
Insane, I know. But it was what it was.
"I will be there to save your ass if a situation arises. And we will have our guns with us to defend, not to forget some of your moves taught by your trainer. So, we will be safe."
"No buts! We're going to the club this weekend and have some fun, that's it!"
I groaned. The slump of my shoulders had her smile ear to ear in triumph. Her eyes were twinkling with mischievousness.
"You've no idea who we're gonna meet there." Her mouth turned up into an evil smile.
"Wait, what?" I frowned.
"Nothing! Gotta go now! Be ready at six. See you at the weekend, bye!" she yelled out over her shoulder and raced out of the door before I could ask anymore questions.
She was definitely planning something in that devilish little head of hers.
I blew out a breath.
I just hoped this weekend would just come and go without any more drama in my life.
But who was she talking about?
"I still don't think it's a good idea." I bit my lip, staring at myself in the mirror. I couldn't even recognize myself. "Shut up! We're going and that's final! Everything is taken care of, we just have to go through the plan," Laura said, giving the final touches to my makeover. It was the day we were going to pull that stunt. The weekend had arrived in the blink of an eye. And I wasn't still convinced about her plan. Even if deep down I was quite excited about going out to have some fun, I was dreading the consequences if Dad somehow found out. "Don't you think it's too short?" I tugged at the end of the dress that Laura chose for me. It was a beautiful black off shoulder dress that reached till my mid thighs and hugged my body perfectly, showing off my curves with a little glimpse of my cleavage. "Nonsense! You're looking gorgeous in that dress! I wish I
Adrian's POV The bitter sweet taste of the wine burned down my throat as I took another sip from the glass. It wasn't as strong as I preferred, but my regular one was too expensive and vintage for a bar to keep in their collection even if it was one of the most luxurious clubs of the city, so it was the best I could get here. Wasting time on bars like these wasn't my thing, I'd rather scheme another strategy on my next project. But taking at least a night off was profitable for a workaholic man like me to keep their head going. So I needed some relaxation at least once a week. It was what Uncle Andrew believed. Thus he gave Liam, his son and my party lover cousin the responsibility to drag me here every Saturday night. To keep my head clear. Well, at first it wasn't that bad. The drinks and girls were alright. But now it was getting old for me. I
Sofia's POV My lips were firmly set as I passed through the half wasted population, away from that arrogant man with an ego bigger than the sky itself. Eyes narrowed and the irritation still formed on my forehead, I tried to ignore the racing of my heart along with the flutterings down my stomach despite the frenzy. The sudden temperature I felt in the room wasn't due to tons of people dancing around me, or my anger. It was an effect of staying too close to someone. A set of electric blue eyes still stared at me at the back of my mind, where his deep husky voice still could be heard. And among the adverse smell of alcohol and sweat, his intoxicating cologne still lingered in my senses. I shook my head, taking my mind off the outer beauty to the inner. I swear to God, I haven't seen such an ill-mannered, arrogant and infuriating man in my whole life! He really thought I was pu
Walking through the busy street, I let myself lose in the swarm of rushing people with little pink clouds of cotton candy melting into my mouth. The fresh morning breeze swayed my chestnut locks away from my shoulders as tender sunlight delicately kissed my skin. My eyes roamed around, and I felt content in my heart. I felt ordinary. Just like the moving crowd around me. No guards breathing on my neck. No weapons surrounding me. With a content smile stretched across my lips, I closed my eyes for a moment and drew in a fistful air of breath. But the smile slipped away from my lips as I stumbled on my legs due to a sudden collision against a hard chest. Looking up, I found a pair of electric blue eyes peering down at my soul. And my heart palpitated beneath my chest at the intensity of them. What's he doing here? Suddenly, a black shadow passed beside me
When we reached the penthouse, the guards took post right behind me. Loud music floated outside through the closed door. Is he working out at this time? He had a habit of enjoying blasting music while he worked out. Knowing he wouldn't hear the bell, I pounded my fist on the door several times and waited. After a moment, the music slowed down before the door cracked open. Thus a girl with wild hair and a skimpy black dress, one sleeve hanging down her shoulder, came out. Cheeks flushed, breathing laboured and lips swollen as she eyed me up and down. An annoyance set on her forehead. Well, he definitely was working out. Clearing my throat, I stretched my lips into a smile. "Hi! I'm here to see Max." She raised one of her arched brows. "May I know why?" Her eyes went to the paper bag of cupcakes in my hand. "I don't think we ordered anything." My eyes widened slightly. Did she think I was a delivery girl? Not that it was something bad. Those who did this job worked pretty
My visit to the pizza shop in a busy street, despite the guards' disagreement, reached Dad's ears. And that didn't sit well with him. I reached home to a fuming Dad welcoming me with his wrath. I didn't understand why he was so mad? It's not that I went there without any protection. And who would dare to attack me in the middle of a busy store? But that didn't deter him from insulting me before the guards, enunciating how careless and foolish I was. And that only fueled the fire of my smoldering temperament. "Didn't you think what could be the result of your ridiculous act? How can you be so foolish going between so many unknown people? Did you forget your promise that easily?" "I didn't break my promise. I promised not to go anywhere without any protection, and I didn't. They were with me all the time." "There is no point taking protection if you're t
I wiped my sweaty palm against the black pencil skirt and smoothed the royal blue blouse I chose to wear today for this special day. My first day at the office. I still couldn't believe I was standing here today, before the large office building. It's not that it was my first time coming here. I did, many times. But I didn't come here as an employee then. Though I could just work here as an owner, beside Alex. I had chosen to prove my worth before expecting people to work for me. Despite the dismay of my family, they were proud of my decision, I knew it. I saw it in Dad and Mom's eyes. It was still a matter of disbelief for me; the sudden change of my life. I still couldn't believe Dad would give me the permission to work with Alex. Even if I was going to work in my own family business, with my own brother, I was nervous. I couldn't tame the restless butterflies flutte
Letting out a huff, I slumped on the stairs, providing my butt and legs some rest. My arms held the bunch of folders tight against my chest. Sweat trickled down my spine and forehead from all the marathons I did using the staircase between the third and fifth floor. Not only me, the entire office was racing in this marathon that Adrian Larsen held kindly giving us this project. Even one minute late became a crime here now. So waiting for the elevator was out of the question. I had never seen the employees here working so fast before. That Larsen king wouldn't accept any default and sluggishness under his command. He was making sure he wouldn't have to face any kind of loss where he invested his money. He had set his eyes on here like a hawk all the time, if not him, then it would be his soldiers. I still remember the shock I got when Alex told me he was the one who gave this company this project. Though