The phone was vibrating silently on the bedside table and Emily Clarke saw the caller and picked it up.
“The fish is out and is heading towards your house, you better be careful. I am trying to send reinforcement as soon as possible.” After that, the call was disconnected.
Emily’s body shivered but she felt a warm hand encircle around her and she heaved a sigh of relief.
“Is everything all right?” Richard Clarke whispered.
“He knows everything. And has already arrived outside, we are covered from everywhere.” Emily whispered.
“Hey, don’t worry everything is going to be all right. I am going to cover up outside, till the reinforcement arrives. You go and take care of Callie.” He said and he hugged her tightly as if it was their last hug. And both walked in a separate direction.
“Callie…” Her mother whispered her name and she woke up from her sleep and looked at her hazily as she was half asleep. Her mother hugged her and carried her to her bedroom and made her sit on the bed and whispered.
“Callie , honey come along, we will play the game of hide and seek and you will have to hide behind the secret door that I had shown you that day. You are not supposed to come out till mommy comes and gets you, okay.” Her mother said excitedly.
she was fully awake now and was excited about the game, as she loved hiding when her mom and she played the hide and seek game, on the weekends and the secret door was a secret between her mom and herself but the main reason was, she could see everything from the peephole inside it and no one would be able to see her from outside.
“But mommy, you know I am hiding here so you will find me in no time. It will be so boring” She said unhappily.
Her mother smiled at her lovingly and hugged her, “That’s the fun for today as we will both hide and daddy will look for us. So how do you think the game is interesting?’
“la la la la la, ………..that would be great” Callie sang happily. “But where is daddy?” Callie asked her mother.
“He will be with us any moment. Now quickly go and hide and don’t come out till you are told.” Her mother instructed her and made her go inside and the secret chamber and tied a gold chain around her neck. And kissed her forehead and said. “Just remember this Callie, mommy and daddy love you and Jayden and you should always listen to your brother, okay?”
“Okay mommy, I will always listen to my big brother but when will he come back,” Callie said innocently.
“He will be back soon, love. Now quickly hide and don’t come out till we call you.”
Callie was excited as daddy would be searching for them. It was so much fun. It was late at night and she was surprised that mommy wanted to play a game before they slept.
She sat comfortably and looked out through the peephole on the cabinet door to see if her daddy was looking for her but she couldn’t see anything as the room’s light was very dim. She was giggling thinking he must be looking around the house for her but was not being able to find her.
The rays of the moon fell from the night sky and entered the secret chamber and it looked bright inside.
She was bored to death and thought of giving a hint to her dad about her hiding place and was about to open the door of the secret chamber when she heard a loud noise.
She quickly peeped from the hole and saw that her mother was lying on the bed and she thought daddy had caught mommy and now he will find her and so she stood there quietly and looked outside eagerly.
Callie saw that her mom was lying on the bed and a man who did not look like her dad was naked and was approaching her mom. She panicked, as she saw him slapping her mom, she opened her mouth to protest but no voice came out. Then she tried to open the door, but it could not be opened. She looked at that man who was forcing himself on her mom, as she struggled fiercely not allowing him to touch her.
Then she saw her dad coming in and grabbing that man and they started fighting, hitting each other. she tried to see the face of the man but failed miserably as it was dark outside.
Then she saw the strange man pointing something at her dad and he staggered back and fell, she could see her mom struggling and trying to hit that man but all of a sudden even she collapsed back. She was shocked and puzzled as to what was happening and tried to shout but no voice came out of her mouth. She stared at her mom, motionless in her place.
And then she fainted.
When she woke up, she was lying on the bed and her granny and brother were sitting beside her. Jayden hugged her tightly but no sound came out of her mouth.
Hudson Ford managed a perfunctory grunt, but his gaze stayed riveted on the specs for the Clarke project and his mind was fixed in it. He glanced at his watch, as he had to go to the board room for a meeting with Jayden Clarke the CEO of Clarke group in less than ten minutes and he wanted everything fresh in his mind.
He had worked day and night putting ideas for this project, aware that it would be a great milestone for and Associates' Architecture to get a good go-ahead.
And it would be an even bigger coup for him personally to be asked to head up the team. He had done a lot of work. Using his ideas. Hudson had spent the last two months putting together plans and the public space layout for the Clarke project. High-rise hospital and condo buildings. And last week while he had been to San Francisco working on another major project, he received a call from Jayden telling him to come back as they needed to start the project soon.
Jayden had left a message on my mobile phone last night while he had been flying back from San Francisco to say that he will be coming to meet me the next day to discuss the project.
Which meant, I thought with a quickening excitement that they had surely won the Clarke project, as he said he wanted to discuss.
He had spent long hours working up a design for the forty-story hospital building and a park for the kids to play. It would also have shops, offices and living space for the staff on the other end. And he had gone and met Jayden personally and told him about his ideas, as he wanted to be the head of architecture for the project. So he tried to keep improving and revising the general plans, as this project was started by Jayden’s Parents but had to be drooped, as they died and the project was just lying there and as soon a Jayden took over his dad’s company he proposed the idea of starting the project, it was his parent’s dream project.
He sighed and went towards the window and looked at the view outside, as a chopper just passed through his window noisily. He wanted to take a break and go hiking but work had been a bigger and more tempting mountain to climb. And there had always been more peaks, bigger peaks, tougher ones. And he had realized the challenge, determined to prove himself. And to make his fortune to go with it.
His family had a fortune, of course. The hotel empire that his father oversaw guaranteed that. In another family, that fortune and those connections could have paved the way for a struggling architect. But he had refused to associate with him and had his own name. In fact, he doubted whether his father even knew what he did for a living, much less had ever wanted to encourage him.
His father did not even care. As he owned buildings, he did not create them. And he had no interest in my desire too.
The one time they had discussed his future, when he was eighteen Leo had said, “we can start you in the Los Angeles project I think.”
And Hudson had said, “what ?”
“You need to get a taste of whole business from the ground up, for when you come to work for us.” he had said as if it were given to him freely.
When Hudson had said. “I am not interested.” Leo had raised his brows and given his eldest son a long disapproving stare when turned on his heels and walked out of the room.
End of the discussion.
Hudson would have said it was the end of the relationship, except they had not had much of one before that, either.
At least Leo’s indifference had provided a wonderful incentive to do things in his way and to make his mark.
I was standing in my office, feeling the cool spare elegance of the surrounding, admiring the spectacular view which also happened to include over thirty buildings, my company has been responsible for creating it and I felt that surge of determination all over.
I opened my portfolio and began laying out the sketches, I had done so we could jump right into things and the door burst open and my assistant informed me that Jayden’s car had already arrived downstairs. I thanked her and stood up from my place to go to the conference room.
As I entered the conference room, I was met by strange indifferent glances around me, as this was my company’s conference room but many people who were involved in this project have been invited by Jayden as his base was in Budapest and he had just come here to finish up the project. So he had been using my office as a base.
I acknowledged everyone as I went and took my seat.
After a while my secretary walked in with Jayden Clarke and everyone looked at him with awe, as he was an extremely good-looking guy, with blue eyes, I saw my secretary looking at him with interest and I don’t blame her because Jayden was handsome.
He smiled at me and after acknowledging everyone, came and sat beside me.
Everyone was nervous, as they wanted to know who would be the chief architect for the Clarke project and were waiting for Jayden eagerly.
Jayden looked across everyone and then spoke very clearly. “ Gentleman, as we have gathered here to officially start up the Project, which my parents had started. I would like to congratulate Mr. Hudson Ford, as I have decided to hand over the whole project to him.” He said and turned towards me and held on to my hand, before congratulating me.
I was elated as this was my dream project. I could see the people around me trying to forcefully smile at me and I was least bothered, as I had worked really hard for it.
“But Mr. Clarke who would be the chief architect of this project? As it a collaborated project we would like to know, with whom will we be working?” Said Mr. Mark Dawson. Who was the chairman of the F.W.N enterprise? He was a very shrewd man and was not happy with Jayden’s decision and it was evident in his face.
“Well, Mr. Dawson, I was about to go there and gentleman I request you to please cooperate with each other as it is a very important project for me and I don’t want any sort of animosity amongst all of you.”
Having made his point clear he continued. “This project is very close to my heart, so I have already decided that the chief architect for it will be, Callie Clarke. You must have heard about her. She is an upcoming, top-rated architect around the world and has won many awards internationally. And of course, not to mention that she is my younger sister.” He concluded proudly.
“You mean to say the “Callie Clarke”, who recently won RIBA International award.” One of the board members asked curiously.
“Yeah, that’s her,” Jayden confirmed. “Please wait a moment, she will come any moment, you can meet her personally and she will give you a demo of whatever she has planned.”
I was a little disappointed but was happy that I had gotten the project in my pocket and it doesn’t matter who will be in charge. I had heard about Callie Clarke and was curious to meet her, as I was googling about her but there were no pictures available.
Suddenly I heard the heels cracking on the floor, as someone entered the conference room. I looked up and saw those beautiful eyes and I was awestruck and shocked. I had always dreamt about this day of meeting her again but did not expect that I would meet her in these circumstances.