Finale: Heart Beat Part 23!!

George quietly left the room and went to his study. His walk to the study made him realise the reactions of the helps. He had not really noticed them when he carried Maria up. He smiled to himself. He was beginning to feel like a ghost. He got to his study and could definitely feel his wife. Her scent lingered heavily in the room. Robin had informed him that she spent a lot of time in here. He sat down and just bent his head. He did not switch on the light. He just wanted to think. He cast his mind back on how all of these started. Well, he may have found out the paternity of his son but what had he lost in the process? A lot! He had successfully angered his wife and daughter. He had revealed the true story behind Martin and that just hurt him. His absence had opened the Saint Morgans to danger. He might have been able to salvage the situation now but what if Robin had not appeared at the very moment he did and saved him from that attack? What if he had truly died? What would have become of his family in the name of playing an expensive prank? One day, he would eventually die but he hoped that he would not cause this much damage a second time. He thought about Zee and concluded that she really wasn’t a bad girl after all. She was just carrying a lot of anger and Martin managed to break through to her.

After George visited Maria that other night, he visited Martin. Martin got to have his shocked feat in private as well. He smiled as he remembered how emotional his son was. They spent the night just talking and catching up. Martin opened up to George about his paternity and George said he knew. In that very moment, George assured him that he would always be his son. He had full rights to the Estiamo name and nothing would change. If he wanted, Maria and George would formally adopt him and Martin was so happy about that. In the beginning, George wanted to kick both Martin and Cecilia out but now he loved Martin because he knew Maria loved him like hers. He could not even imagine trying to go against Maria one more time. He would be asking for real death and a divorce. He loved Martin because his daughter loved him as hers and honestly because Martin felt like his. They were a family. After having the heartfelt chat, he co-opted Martin into his plans. He needed Martin to find out what Zee knows. So they planned the most sophisticated kidnap ever. They got her to be where they wanted when they wanted and kept her there for a few days in the guise of a vacation. It gave Martin the opportunity to get close to her and pry into her dealings. After some time, Martin knew he could trust her and decided to be honest with her. And truly, she agreed to do the video. She was done with her father’s behaviour. She was prepared to testify against him everywhere and anywhere. The rejection she got from the Saint Morgans struck a nerve considering the fact that she was only doing it for her father. She was done feeling like a pawn and Martin could definitely relate with that. They bonded as half siblings and George hopes they would actually get along forever. Martin lived a very lonely secluded life for a long time, the more sweet people he has around him now, the better.

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Back to reality, how does he solve the current problem? He decided to atone for his sins one day at a time starting with his wife. He was not eager to go to the office. His children had that on lockdown. It felt so good to think of his ‘children’. Then it occurred to him that Daniella could decide to walk away from the company. He began to pray a silent prayer hoping that Daniella would find a place in her heart to forgive him. He ended up sleeping in his study, from thinking to sleeping.

The next morning, Maria got up feeling much better. She looked around her and discovered what room she was in. After the supposed death of her husband, she had stopped sleeping in this room. The room had George’s things, smelt like him and just had him all over. She was not prepared to take out his things ever. So, she moved into a different room and left this one. Somehow she found the strength to smile. Her husband was back. Then it turned into a frown. He should have never left to start with. She got up and walked to the bathroom to freshen up. She couldn’t help it, the smile returned. She had missed the room and everything the room represented. She went ahead to freshen up. She had a few lounge wears in the room so she wore one of them and was about to leave the room when she remembered her daughter. ‘Oh good Lord’, she murmured as she searched for her phone. She found it and dialled Daniella. The phone call woke Daniella up from her sleep. She picked the call and heard her sweet mother say, “Good morning Ella.” Her mother had not called her that in a long time. “Good morning mum. How are you feeling? I am sorry for tiring you out yesterday. I know you hate it when I have an emotional breakdown but I just….” Daniella explained. “I know baby and it is okay. I can totally understand. I just wanted to check on my babies. How are the guys?” Maria asked. At that, Daniella realised that the sitting area was empty. There was absolutely no sign of M square. “Errr I want to believe that they are fine.” Daniella said a bit dazed. “What is wrong Ella?” Maria asked concerned. “It just that I could have sworn that we were here altogether but now, I cannot seem to find them.” Daniella explained. Maria laughed and said, “If I know them well, then I am sure that they are right around the corner. Get some rest baby and you do not have to hurry back home. Just do you okay and remember that mama loves you plenty!” Maria said sweetly. “And I absolutely love mama beyond the moon.” Daniella replied smiling. The call ended and Daniella continued staring around her apartment.

Eventually, she found the strength to get up and look around the house. They were indeed not there. She looked outside her window and saw that her car had been properly parked but the second car was missing. They had truly left her. She started trying to think if she drove them away without realising it. Anyway, she decided it was a good time to freshen up. They had slept without having a bath and brushing their teeth. She felt extremely dirty. She raced to her bathroom and had a deep cleansing shower. She came out feeling like a baby. She threw on some grey sweatpants and a grey free tshirt. She could not be bothered about feeling pretty today. All she wanted was pure cruise. She approached the sitting area and heard voices. She peeped and saw her men. They were back. Clearly, they had gone to Michael’s place to get some clothes. Coincidentally, they were all wearing a shade of grey sweatpants and they had brought breakfast. She was excited. “Where did you both go to?” Daniella asked sulking. They both laughed and Michael replied, “Sounds like sleeping beauty missed us.” “Of course I did! I thought you both had abandoned me.” Daniella said still sulking. “Like that could ever happen.” Martin responded and Daniella started smiling again. “Right! I have the best guys in the world!” Daniella said as she made for the food.

In the Estiamo mansion, Maria came downstairs to an already set dining table and her husband waiting for her. It felt nice to use the words ‘her husband’. His presence still felt very unreal. “Hey Baby G”, George said with a smile. Where was her zeal to remain mad at him? She became overwhelmed with gratitude. He was back! “Hi George! You want to tell me what all of these is about?” She asked looking over the table. “I know I have years of making up to do. I want to make sure every second of the day I am making it up to you starting with breakfast.” George explained nervously. He half expected her to turn around and walk away. Maria said nothing and just walked to her seat at the table – the one to the left of where George will sit. “Well, let the making up begin. I am extremely hungry.” Maria declared. George was so excited. He dashed to Maria and hugged her. “I will never ever hurt you again. I promise!” George said. “I will hold you to your word.” Maria teased. “Now please let us eat.” She instructed and dug into the food.

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Martin eventually returned to his house and left the lovebirds at the other side of town. He had to check up on Zee as well. He was also eager to meet Crystal. Interestingly, in the midst of this mess, he might be the luckiest one. He was gaining siblings and parents from every corner and he loved it. He also was hoping that Michael and Daniella would finally decide on what they were. He regretted ever trying to tank their relationship and maybe if he had behaved himself during their vacation, they would have been defined by now. He would have to apologise for his behaviour one day. But for now, he would give them space to gravitate towards each other.

Michael and Daniella decided to go for a walk for the first time in a week. Michael was tired of Daniella just holing up in her apartment and refusing to step out. She had even refused to go to work. He on the other hand has been shuffling from the office to their end. All of these had to end today and this young woman had to come out of this shell before it goes beyond redemption. They ended up walking towards the park Michael had found Daniella the last time they were on this end of things. They sat on the swing and just let themselves enjoy the fresh air and serenity of the area. “What did you want to tell me when we were on vacation?” Daniella asked out of the blues. “Oh wow! I was definitely not expecting that question.” Michael replied nervously. “I have just been curious and seeing that I have been a jobless bee, I have been thinking about it a lot.” Daniella said fiddling with her fingers. She really hoped that what he had wanted to say was something about them because with everything that has happened, she could not be too sure. “Okay. I guess here it is. I like you Daniella. Actually, scrap that, I absolutely love you. At first, it felt like everyone else but us saw it. But then I started seeing it and I felt guilty. More like I felt scared. We have been friends all our lives and I did not want to ruin that. But again, who is the best person to spend the rest of your life with other than your best friend? I can be me with you. I do not have to be a perfect Saint Morgan. I just have to show up and be Michael and that has always been okay with you. Every time you cry, I break within and when you smile, I bloom within. I want to wake up every day to that smile. I just want to do life with you like we always have.” Michael said and paused to look at Daniella. She was smiling and tearing up at the same time. “You know what? Here it is.” Michael said as he dropped to his knees and brought out a ring case from his pocket. “I have been carrying this ring in my pocket for a while now wondering when I would actually muster the courage to ask you. Daniella Estiamo, would you be my heart beat forever? If you ever stop beating, then I am done for.” Michael said with the cutest smile ever. Daniella looked at him smiling and now the tears were pouring down. “Yes, I will be your heart beat and you will be mine.” She said laughing. At that Michael slipped the ring on her finger. It was the most beautiful ring ever. The stone was carved as a heart and the stone was red, Daniella’s favourite colour. It was all beautiful. Michael got up and picked Daniella into a wonderful hug. They were both so excited.

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It had been over a week since George’s return and he decided to plan a family fun day. His daughter had still not returned home and Maria had prevented him from chasing her. If he cannot go to her, he has to bring her to him. So, he planned the family fun day and reached out to Michael to get her there. Maria was glowing. He could not remember his wife ever looking this radiant. Maybe he should consider disappearing and appearing again. Something told him to kick off the devil from his shoulders and he smiled at his wife.

First, Patrick and Janet arrived. It was always so good to have them around. Then Martin arrived with Zee and Crystal. For people that never liked the Williams, they were extremely pleased to have Zee and Crystal join them today. A car pulled over and George prayed hard that his daughter had actually obliged his invitation. He was right. Michael and Daniella stepped out of the car and walked towards the family. Maria and Janet looked at themselves with absolute joy and made for Daniella. Oh they could spot a rock from a distance. Before Daniella could greet anyone, they demanded where the ring was from. Daniella simply blushed and said, “My heart beat finally popped the question” looking at Michael who could not contain his joy as well. The mothers screamed in excitement and buried both of them in hugs. It was finally happening. The most anticipated wedding of the century. “Maria, we have a wedding to plan.” Janet announced joyfully. They all got together and just enjoyed the day. After a while, Maria disappeared for a little while. No one seemed to notice but George.

She appeared later with an additional guest. “Martin my boy, before you say anything, I want you to listen to me. You have every right to be upset. You have every right to turn around right now but I want you to really look at her and tell me she has not been a good mother to you. Tell me that she has not loved you in her way. Tell me that she has not been there for you. Tell me that you do not love her. Tell me that you really want her out of your life. She has been your mother your whole life and not once did she treat you like you weren’t her son or you were a tool. I am certain that she did not even know what Philip’s grand plan was. She just wanted the best for you in her twisted little way. Martin can you please find a place in your heart to forgive Cecilia for my sake?” Maria pleaded. In-between crying, Cecilia said, “It is ironic that it is the woman that I hated for no reason that has been there for me in the last few days. I want to take the opportunity to publicly apologise to you Maria. You indeed have a heart of gold and I am sorry for every harsh word I threw at you. I was stupid. To Daniella, I am sorry that I saw you as a threat to my son when you were only offering him what he had craved his whole life, a present family. I am also sorry for how I treated you and Michael when you came to mine in search of your brother.  George, I am sorry for deceiving you and becoming a weapon that could be used against you. You were good to me and I did not even deserve any of it. Most importantly, Martin, I am sorry for being so selfish and greedy. I am sorry that I inadvertently opened you up to a lot of hurt. I was never going to tell you that I was not your biological mother because even in my sleep, I am convinced that I gave birth to you. With every time I held you, I fell more in love with you. I am sorry that I was not the best mum and I was reckless and I can understand if you truly never want to see me again. I just want you to know that I am truly sorry.” She concluded, turned around and began to walk away.

“Mum”, Martin called out. Cecilia could not believe her ears and she froze in the spot and just cried some more. Martin walked up to her and said, “I forgive you and I will always love you for indeed you have been the best mother to me in your own way.” And he held her as she cried till she was a bit calmer. “I am so sorry Martin.” Cecilia murmured. “I know mum. I can clearly see it.” He teased. “I really love you.” Cecilia replied. “I really love you too.” Martin said smiling down at his mother.

Maria was so full of joy at the sight. She walked towards George, pulled him up and pushed him towards Daniella. “Your turn.” She said. George stood in front of his daughter perplexed and playing with his hands. “Elle baby, there is a lot I want to say but words fail me. I thank God everyday for the gift of you as my daughter. I would not have it any other way. I am sorry for my outburst that day. I am sorry for faking my death. I am sorry for putting you through hell. But I am hella proud of the woman I see standing right in front of me. You handled everything with impeccable grace. No one could do it like Elle. I am so sorry that I put my baby through all these. Please forgive me if you can.” George concluded looking nervously at his daughter. “You looked at me and told me that I was not your daughter.” Daniella said with tears trickling down her cheeks. “I am so sorry Elle.” George replied. “I stood in front of a mirror and questioned my very existence. I did not know what I was anymore. Then you die on me and I had to bear all of that guilt. Why? What did I ever do to deserve all of that?” Daniella asked. “The truth is the reason I did all of these does not make any sense anymore. I was depressed when I said what I said to you and I am incredibly sorry that I did that to you. I will spend the rest of my life making up for it I promise.” George offered. “We have uncompleted stories to complete.” Daniella said. “What better time to finish them than now?” George replied. “I have always been a daddy’s girl. I never want to feel like I do not belong there anymore.” Daniella said. “I will never make the mistake of doing that to you again.” George confirmed. “I am still CEO.” Daniella teased. “You can have and be everything. All I want is for you to forgive me and be my girl.” George replied with a smile. Daniella sniffed and said, “I forgive you dad.” “Thank you so much Elle.” George said and hugged his daughter. Everyone was so happy.

Finally, there was unity. Maria murmured a prayer of thanks. Coincidentally, Janet did the exact same thing. It is safe to say that family fun day was a success and the leading families were stronger than ever before with a grand wedding to plan.

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“I wonder what we shall name this new heart beat of ours.” Daniella asked with a broad smile. “I wonder why you have to wonder. She shall be called ‘Bella E. Saint Morgan’.” Michael declared.

A big thank you to everyone that has shown consistent support throughout this story. It has been beautiful. I appreciate everyone that has reached out to me with comments. I am glad you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it. Thank you so much. Till the next story. We what? We meuvee!!

Ebubechukwu Natalia Ajufo

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