"The vilest of men and the wickedest of women likewise may do good from time to time, for love and compassion and pity may be found in even the blackest of hearts" -- George R.R. Martin, Fire and Blood (A Targaryen History, #1)
Today is the day I am finally the owner of Pope Software and Web Development. After months of careful planning, I was finally able to acquire the majority of its shares. Christopher will never know what hit him. For years I protected him from pops but he blew that chance when he started his affair with his personal assistant. He should have just divorced Justine, paid her a fat settlement and he would have kept his company. But Christopher was too greedy; he wants to have his cake and eat it too.
"Good morning Pamela! Happy Anniversary!" Bending over, I kiss Pam on her cheek warmly handing her a wrapped box in silver paper.
"Mr. Black...you are in a...great mood, this morning." She laughs, reaching for the box in my hands. "Thank you"
"You're most welcome, Pam my dear." The shocked look on her face is adorable. Yes. I am in a fantastic mood, nothing could go wrong today.
Meanwhile at the Pope Software and Web Development Building, across town
"Hey Paul, what's happening here?"
"Morning, Mr. Pope..."
There are droves of strange people milling around, carrying boxes to and from the elevators. The sign at the front entrance has been removed.
"Paul, what the fuck is happening!" Paul is not answering my question.
"I am heading up to my office to get to the bottom of this."
"Mr. Pope." So, he has a voice then. "You cannot...not your office anymore." I glare across the desk at him. He's avoiding my intense staredown.
"What do you mean by not my office? I am the owner and CEO of Pope Software, am I not?" Stupid question really.
"Well..." Where on God's green earth did they get this moron?
"Well, what Paul, fucking out with it!"
"As of 6 am this morning, someone else owns the company"
My blood runs cold, someone bought my company. The company that took every blood, every sweat and every tear that I had. Seven long years, starting off with nothing, working 22 hours daily for five years. Who would do this vile act? Who is this heartless?
The vice tightens on my heart, slowly griping harder and harder as reality silently screams the name at me: BLACK
No...he wouldn't have. I've been his fucking best friend for so many years. His only buddy, the only person that can stomach his sanctimonious ass.
Clearly, am not thinking this through. D would not do this to me. He just wouldn't.
From the corner of my eye, I spy the company's new name: Black Software Development Co.
That black-hearted son of a bitch. Wait until I get my hands on him. He will not be getting away with this! Not at all!
My phone rings, glancing at the screen; Christopher. A small laugh escapes my lips, I ignore his call. He calls back, I ignore it yet again. It rings again, it is still Christopher; persistent little bugger. I turn off my ringer; I am really not in the mood to hear the cries and pleads of a grown man.
Then Pam buzzes me; he is still not giving up.
"Yes Pamela, this better be good, I am swamped."
"My apologizes; Mr. Black, Mr. Pope's on the line insisting to have a word with you, he's in the lobby, the security isn't granting him access to your elevator."
"I know. He's not welcome here anymore."
I hang up with no other explanation returning to my ever-increasing pile of paperwork.
Fuck him and his family! His lackey Pamela just dismisses me, like I am worthless. He will pay for this! They will all pay! I will not be treated like a fool. Damn it! Turning on my heels I exit his kingdom into the murky weather and head home to my beloved wife, Justine. She will understand, she will be on my side, her cousin is an ass; she said so, so many times in the past
"Justine my darling, are you here?" My feet trip over suitcases placed in the foyer. What in the hell is happening here?
"Justine! Justine Pope, wherein holy hell are you hiding?!" My heart beats frantically in my chest as I race through the house. She is not here. Fuck it all! Sitting on our bed, my head in my hands, I fight off the tears that threaten to fall. My world is cracking at the seams, spilling its guts out for the world to see. When a fluttering piece of paper catches my eye, I turn to see a note on my pillow. Grabbing it up I begin reading and suddenly my heart slows down and stops. Where there once lived desperation and anguish; hatred.
I want a divorce. You have broken my heart and shamed me. Your affair with Sandra, I know all about it. Demetrius told me everything. You are a vile, small monster of a man and I will have nothing to do with you.
I have packed all your clothes. Get out of my house that MY parents bought. I will be staying over at their house until you leave; you have until 6 pm this evening. After this you will be trespassing and the police will be informed.
Leblanc? Already? The divorce papers have not even been printed and she is back to Leblanc?! Words, words I tell you, I will have words with her!!
Approximately 10:20 pm on Friday 22nd June 2018
Darkness and coldness, my new best friends. A welcoming embrace from death swiftly comes. I am honoured to be chosen but saddened that I will not see her face again, feel her touch, her lips on mine; Isabetha, I have lost you again and maybe forever.
"Mr. Black! Oh my Lord, Mr. Black!"
A familiar voice screams me back off the ledge of the abyss.
"Someone, please call an ambulance; he's been shot! Someone help!"
Pamela had forgotten her first-ever anniversary present from her boss and because George was a skeptic, they swung by the office after their anniversary dinner.
She cradles my head in her lap and whimpers my name, her tears splash unto my cheek. I crack open my eyes a fraction and glance up at her.
"Thank you, God, you're alive. Hold on, help is coming. Don't die, Canaan, don't die!"
She called me Canaan, six years of employ as my personal assistant and it takes me being shot and dying for her to call me Canaan. Proper much Pamela.
The wail of the sirens on the ambulance becomes louder and louder, the closer it gets.
"They're here, Canaan."
I slip into a dreamless state.
"Good morning, Mr. & Mrs. Black?"
They stand at the same time and look wearily at the doctor. It has been ten hours of torment. Second and Noémie were at their wit's end. Their only child.
"The surgery was a success. We were able to remove all four bullets from his body. But he lost a massive amount of blood and has fallen into a coma. We are closely monitoring his vitals. You will be able to see him in a few moments."
"Thank you, doctor." Second's shoulders slumps and his voice are broken.
Someone tried to take his child from him.
They will pay for this, he vows. He will make them pay even if it costs him his life.