Chapter Nine

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I watched with intrigue as the architect described his plan on the screen, showing us various slides of the diagrams and virtual visualisation. It was nice, but that was just his first impression, there were going to be numerous changes in the design and ideas based on what Winston, Clifford, my father, and the other executives reviewed.

As he finally drew his final slides, the assistant architect stood with his iPad in hand, ready to copy and note what they wanted in the next presentation. I looked around the table at all the executives giving their input, refusing certain ideas and asking them to explain some terms.

Winston looked intently at the papers in front of him before fixing his gaze on Floyd - the head architect, "How many floors did you assign for the atrium?"

"The design is for ten storeys, the stack effect will raise the waste air into the heat exchanger from the aerodynamic system for recirculation, but we can change that if you will," he explained.

"Make that twenty, and I want you to aim for a high BREEAM rating, possibly the highest."

Everyone went back and forth with the suggestions, some technicalities were difficult to understand for me, others like the photovoltaic cells and solar panels on the rooftop, sensors for carbon dioxide and oxygen were easier to take in and interesting too.

When they'd established what everyone wanted to see in the next meeting, Floyd started typing on his laptop while his assistant was supposed to round up the papers but I noticed him hovering near Winston, hands resting on the table as he leaned towards him to almost talk into his ear. I sneaked glances at them for several minutes of their conversation till Winston stood from his seat, speaking a few final words to James before making his way to me at the far end of the table. The assistant regarded us with an assessing look for a few moments before I looked at Winston to find him leaning into me for a kiss. It wasn't long, but it was enough to let the man know he didn't have a chance as we went out of the conference room together.

"Why are you always attracting such attention? It would be interesting to have some eyes on me too..."

Winston turned to me with a raised brow, "You want attention?"

"A couple of admirers of my own," I said with a pleased sigh.

"And what would I do when the admirers throng to you wanting your time?"

"You can get in line," I joked, watching him get amused.

"Of course," he agreed as he steered me towards the waiting car, not waiting for James like I thought he would.

"Where are we going?" I asked, looking at him as his expression sobered a little, not quite as animated as moments before.

"Home, I need you to meet someone. "

"Some sibling I don't know about?" I questioned half serious.

"I have no siblings," he said gently.

I didn't question further, since we were already on our way to the reveal.

When we reached his penthouse, he took me to his office and made me take a seat as he left the room. I waited for several minutes, accepting the juice his housekeeper brought and wondered what was taking him so long. I started fiddling with my phone, continuing my conversation with a friend as I waited, almost lost in it when I heard the soft thump of a folder being dropped on the table.

I looked at Winston with a questioning frown as he took the chair near mine and gestured to the folder. I picked it up, looking at the exterior for a second before opening it to find it full of papers. Hospital papers of an expecting woman - Claire Grant, 32 - patient history, appointment records, prescriptions. I raised my head to him momentarily before returning to the folder, picking out an envelope which contained sonogram pictures and had Winston and Claire's names.

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