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Chapter Four

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"It is better to be feared than loved, if you cannot be both."

Niccolo Machiavelli

"Isaac!" Madison's shrill voice vibrates my ear drum and the fine china set out on the table. She shoots up from her chair, drops her phone which had been glued to her fingers a mere moment ago and runs towards the two boys.

She stops infront of the boy on the left. The snooty expression on her face leaving without a trace.

She's smiling.

"Let's go!," she whispers but loud enough for everyone to hear.

Uncle Elijah and my grandmother, I notice, subtly shift their positions. Uncle Elijah positions himself infront of me, shielding me from the two boys and his daughter and my grandmother does the same with Lucy.

Lucy and I share a look of confusion. Again I find myself questioning their motives.

Are they ashamed of us?

We definitely didn't look like we belonged here. It was early in the morning and these people were prepped as if they were about to step into a full-blown photoshoot.

And then there was Lucy and I.

Lucy with her hair all over the place, wearing old pyjamas and worn out sneakers. And me, wearing nothing but a cheap black dress that looked like it was used to making rounds in a strip club.

Yeah, I could see why my newfound family wanted to shield us from their friends and neighbours.

Who are they? Lucy mouthes and I shrug my shoulders in response. A sudden feeling of helplessness spreads through my body.

I felt powerless and I was scared because this isn't like me. I do what I want to do. Not what others expect me to do. Nor, do I feel a need to impress others.

So what if I was wearing a skimpy black dress and sky high stilettos so  early in the morning?

These people, although family, are complete strangers. If they were worried about our wellbeing then they would've found us a long time ago.

They would've found us when my mother died.

Rich people have a way of doing things. Making things happen. Who better to know this then someone who has experience in dealing with them?

Anger surges through me as I stare into the backs of these traitors. How dare they bring us into their home only to hide us?

As if we're skeletons in a closet!

I stand up straighter, push back my hair, prop my hand against my hip and tap my heel repetitively.

"Aren't you going to introduce us to your company, grandmother and uncle dearest?" My tone is sickly sweet although I'm internally raging.

Uncle Elijah and grandmother jolt upwards, looking like they've recieved an electric shock.

I smirk and Lucy giggles beside me. She winks at me, the innocent action is a signal that we'd agreed on a few years back. A wink, shared by either one of us was an approval of a sort. Kinda like an all clear to go ahead with whatever the other had planned.

Slowly our two relatives part ways, like stage curtains they move to one side, revealing what they failed to conceal.

This time the two boys note our presence. One, the boy Madison wasn't hanging off, stares at Lucy and I, a perplexed expression spreading across his features.

The other one, Madison's Isaac, kept his gaze solely on me. I couldn't tell what he was thinking because his brown eyes, at least I think they were brown from where I was stood, give  away nothing. He watched me as if I was an object to be surveyed, inspected, to be worked out.

I wasn't sure why but he made me feel uneasy. I hadn't seen this boy before, I had no idea who he was but why was I feeling the opposite?

Uncle Elijah clears his throat, "Aiden and Isaac," he starts, "this is my niece Nova," he nods in my direction, "and this is my niece Lucy."

"Pleased to meet you," Aiden, the boy with the pretty features says politely. My hearing, however, detects a slight restraint in his words.

"And you." I reply, not bothering to hide my anger. 

"Aiden and Isaac live in the house next to us. Their parents are close friends of ours. They have been for a very long time."

And there it was. My grandmother's subtle warning for me not to say or do anything out of line. I will abide. For now.

"When did you find them?"

Ah, so Madison's Isaac does speak.

"Early this morning."

Something flashes in Isaac's eyes. Something cold. And then he smiles. It's a calculating smile, one that doesn't reach his eyes. His gaze lowers, travelling the length of my body, halting on my dress.

"Sure looks like it," he responds smoothly, flashing another heartless grin. Madison's roar of laughter fills the silent room. Aiden spares me a quick glance, and my grandmother, uncle and Eleonor share a look of horror.

Everyone in the room knows what he's insinuating and they'd be pretty darn stupid to think I was going to take in his words without a fight.

Who did he think he was? He knew nothing about me. Nothing!

I step forward and open my mouth, ready to divulge into a colourful rant but Eleonor gets there before me.

"I think it would be best if you leave for school. Traffic will be a nightmare at this time. You'll be late if you wait any longer," she says in a rush and shoves Isaac and the other two out of the room.

I impatiently wait for them to leave before I speak.

It seems like I have to set a few ground rules.

"If you want us to stay," I say slowly, maintaining eye contact with Uncle Elijah, Eleonor and my grandmother, "then you'll make sure that son of a bitch doesn't take a single step in this house. One step and we're," I look down at Lucy who purses her lips, nodding at my words, "out. Any problems with that small request?"

Uncle Elijah and Eleonor look at my grandmother for an answer. Eventually, after a few sighs and incoherent phrases, she replies, "No not at all," she turns to her son, her voice taking on an authoritative tone,"Elijah inform all staff, including chefs, that Isaac Royal is no longer allowed entry into our household."

Uncle Elijah retorts to a simple nod, "Yes, mother."

"This is ridiculous! What will Raina say?" Eleonor whines loudly, "How am I going to explain to her that we banned her son from visiting our home?"

"Leave Raina to me, Eleonor," my grandmother tells her and then switches her gaze to me.

When she speaks again her voice is loud and clear, "Our priorities have changed."

Authors Note:

Hi my lovelies!

What do you think of this chapter?

And most importantly...Isaac Royal. 🙊

Until next time

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