Heart Beat Part 20!!

Daniella sat in the comfort of her office as her mother and Robin presented the proposal of merging with SMG. She could see that it was a well thought out move but she did not understand why. Why should we want to merge with SMG? Both companies were thriving well. When they needed manpower, she understood why they would merge. But right now, she did not seem to understand it. They had purposely omitted the debt that SMG was in. They did not want her to worry. They were trying hard to make her look at the merger as a good thing but her instinct knew there was more to it. In addition, she would have to work with Michael and she did not want that for herself right now. It was better if they maintained their distance. He needs to focus Zee and she needs to focus on her company. Having them constantly bumping into each other was neither beneficial nor smart.

At that, Daniella’s P.A. announced the arrival of Michael Saint Morgan. ‘Speak of the devil’, Daniella murmured inaudibly. “I guess my work here is done. I will leave you and Michael to work out the details.” Maria said as she got up from her seat, and maybe they could work out the other problem. Michael walked into the office and greeted Maria with a hug. “My dear son, you look burnt out. Do you guys know how to rest at all?” Maria asked really worried about how drained Michael was looking. “I am positive that I am about to rest more starting from today.” Michael responded with a smile. “You better!” Maria chided as she finally left the office. Obviously, Robin left with her and it was down to Daniella and Michael.

Daniella did not feel the need to play nice. This was a business meeting and it would remain so. “Hello Daniella”, Michael said calmly. “Hi Michael. Please take a seat. Your shadow is not with you today?” She asked sarcastically. “As you can see, she is not.” Michael responded as he took a seat. “So, I was instructed to come and talk to you about the merger.” Michael informed. He had been eager to come and see her but now that he saw her and her demeanour, he was pissed again. He may not have to marry Zee but whatever he had for Daniella was done at this point. He would concentrate solely on business. They seemed to be good at that and nothing more. “Yes, the merger. Is it just me or do you feel like that there is something more to it? I mean a merger is beautiful. They were times I have wished that our offices were just right beside each other but I just feel like there is more to this merger.” Daniella said actually thinking of it. “They did not tell you?” Michael inquired. “Tell me what?” Daniella retorted. “So, you really do not know why this merger is happening?” Michael asked again. “No, I honestly do not. Apart from it apparently being one of my father’s wishes before he died, I do not know why our companies are merging.” Daniella explained. “Well, that is just classic. Do you know why I intended to marry Zee?” Michael asked. “Intended?” Daniella asked hung on that word. “Yes, Daniella ‘intended’. It was because The Williams ran my company into a debt and I could only salvage the company by marrying Zee. I have been overworked thinking of a way out but Philip really tanked SMG and I do not know how none of us saw it coming. Today, my dad came to me telling me that we had secured a merger with the Estiamo Group and it was the most relieving news I have had in a while but I guess that does not work for the Princess. I will get back to thinking of a way out!” Michael snapped, got up from his seat and walked towards the door. “Michael!” Daniella called and he stopped in his tracks. Daniella got up from her seat, removed her heels and walked to Michael. Then she hugged him and just held him. “I am sorry. I am sorry you have had to deal with all of these alone. I am sorry that I was not there for you. I am sorry that it sounded like I did not want the merger. I am sorry that I did not know. I am sorry that I possibly drove you off the cliff just now. I am sorry.” Daniella uttered sadly. She really felt guilty. She has been mourning and Michael had been there every step of the way and when he had crisis, all she did was compound it. She released him from the hug, walked to her table and signed off on the merger. “Here. It is done. The Groups would be merged and we will get through whatever the Williams have up their sleeves.” Daniella said placating. Michael simply looked at her intensely. After what seemed like forever, he walked up to her and hugged her. Today was the first time that Daniella had voluntary hugged him first. He could not get over it. His heart was beating a bit too fast and he just wanted to continue hugging her for a while and that is exactly what he did.

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Maria’s drive home was riddled with flashbacks.

“You cannot be George. I have started seeing things!” Maria squeaked at the sight of George. “Baby G”, George said sweetly. “Do not call me that. Only my husband calls me that and I do not know what you are.” Maria retorted backing away from the being in her front. There was nowhere to run. What had she got herself into? Why is she seeing things? She closed her eyes and shook her head as if she was trying to get rid of a terrible thought. She opened her eyes and George was still standing in front her. Her heart started racing. She was convinced that she was about to have a heart attack but no, she had a daughter to remain strong for. “Who are you? What do you want? Who let you into my house?” Maria asked in-between her palpitations. “Maria, I need you to calm down and listen to me.” George urged. Maria laughed. “Listen to you?” Maria snapped. She was looking him dead in the eye now. She picked something up from her table and flung it at him. It hit his shoulder and he winced in pain. “Ah! George! Ah!” She yelled with her hands on her head. “What is this? Are we acting a movie in this life? George, I buried you! I held your cold body and you did not wake up despite me begging you to. Three months later you appear to me in my room.” Maria said. She was shaken and was crying. “I can explain but first I need your help.” George pleaded. “No o you are bad all by yourself o! You killed yourself and rose yourself up. Mini Jesus is that you? George please leave my room. In fact, leave my house!” Maria instructed. “Wait Maria, this is something that affects your children, Daniella and Michael.” George explained. Maria paused and asked, “my Michael and Daniella?” “Yes, please listen to me and afterwards, if you want, I will leave you alone.” George said contritely. Maria wiped her tears and sat down at the edge of the bed trying hard to calm herself down. She was certain that her blood pressure was skyrocketing. When she was eventually calm, George proceeded to give her a breakdown of everything that had happened and was happening. He threw in an apology in-between every few sentences and each time it irritated her. All she cared about were the children. George can go back to his underground house and stay there. After he was done, Maria agreed to play along and lastly she said, “if you know what is good for you, make sure Daniella does not see you till everything settles.”

Once again, she shook her head rigorously. She still wasn’t sure that this was the land of the living. George did her dirty like this to find out something that she could have found out without breaking a sweat. It really could not be true. She did not want to be alone at the moment so she decided to go and see Janet.

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“I thought I was having a bad day but you look beat up. What is wrong Janet?” Maria asked worried about how downcast her friend was looking. “Maria, have you ever felt like an incompetent wife and mother?” Janet asked honestly looking at her friend. “Are we ever confident that we are absolutely competent? I thought we agreed to always do our best and leave the rest to God? We have been there for our husbands through thick and thin. Why would you be questioning yourself now?” Maria placated. “M my husband is in debt and I did not know. Like my husband has been dealing with a lot and all I did was rant. Even my son knew. My son was ready to make a sacrifice for his father and I did not even know.” Janet uttered with tears running down her cheeks. “I think you are being a bit hard on yourself. You cannot know everything. He clearly did not want you to know J.” Maria said comforting her friend. “But you always know when George is going through things. I always aspired to be as perceptive as you are.” Janet stated. “Do you think I am always 100% right? George was severely depressed before he died and I had no clue. I was busy travelling that period and fulfilling Mrs Estiamo duties. I was thinking of hosting them to a meal and I did not know my home would not be waiting for me. Husband dead and child was missing when I returned.” Maria said tearing up, but she was crying for a different reason. She had gone through a lot in the last three months. The pain, the emptiness, all the negativity and the silly man did not even die. “I guess you are right. You must have been broken and probably still hurting. I am sorry about everything you have had to go through Maria.” Janet offered wiping Maria’s tears. Maria smiled. “You are one of my truest friends. Now stop being sad and go and be the rock you need to be for your husband. You did not know before but now you do. So what are you waiting for?” Maria asked with a raised brow. “I was embarrassed but you are right. I am going to my husband right away. Stay here and eat as much as you want. It is on the house love.” Janet said, getting up, hugging her friend and dashing out of the restaurant. All Maria did was laugh until she remembered George.

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All the way in the Williams Mansion was a troubled Crystal, Zee’s mother and Philip’s wife. “Why are you so stressed?” Philip asked irritated by his wife. “This is funny to you right? Your daughter has not been home in two days and it is okay to you.” Crystal retorted. “Do you realise that she is an adult? She can be at her friend’s or something.” Philip replied unbothered. “Really? I have called everybody and nobody has seen her Philip.” Crystal snapped. “Woman watch your tone with me.” Philip replied his wife while staring her down. “Gone are the days when I was afraid of you Philip. Those days are sooooo gone. As of today, my daughter is missing and I want her found. Since you have decided not to remove your hand from other people’s cookie jars, at least guarantee the safety of your daughter. Rubbish!” Crystal said and walked out on Philip. He was amazed at her audacity. Crystal had never spoken to him like that. He would need to teach her a lesson but for now, he is occupied with finding Peter. Where in the world was Peter and why has nobody trying to find him? If he got involved in locating Peter, it would be suspicious. He did not want the unnecessary attention. He had worked so hard to get to this point where he can reign supreme. George and Patrick would be nothing compared to him. He would be the richest, most influential and potentially, the next President of the country if he played his cards right. But for now, he really needs Peter to give Martin control over the Estiamo wealth for him.

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Daniella decided to have dinner with the Saint Morgans as it did not look like Michael wanted to let her go ever. He was holding her hands and honestly, if felt good. She was not over that peck he gave Zee in her presence. How dare he? She won’t bring it up today because he needs to chill and if being around him gave him energy, then she will stay around him as long as she can. Then it occurred to her that she had not seen Martin in two days. They had not even bumped into each other at the office. Was he even present at the office? She had been so holed up in her work that it had skipped her mind to check up on her brother. Knowing Martin, he was probably low key sulking somewhere. She made a mental note to check up on him on her way home. Janet came bursting into the house to meet Patrick, Michael and Daniella discussing. Daniella immediately got up to greet and hug her. “Hello Daniella love.” Janet said joyfully. She was definitely extra joyful because she had caught a glimpse of her and Michael holding hands. After greeting Daniella, Janet hugged her son, and then she flung into her husband’s arms and hugged him tightly. Michael and Daniella simply smiled at her show of affection. On the other hand, Patrick was surprised because she had been giving him the semi-silent treatment. Janet looked at her husband and said, “I love you!” Daniella and Michael chorused “awwwn!”

…to be continued

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