Chapter 1 We're Going to New York
Caroline King was going down the elevator when she kept receiving and declining calls from Liam Sabbatini. Her cellphone stopped ringing for a brief second, then she received another call. She looked at the caller ID and angrily declined the phone call. “Fucking asshole.” She felt nothing but rage at him.
When Caroline arrived at the garage, she stepped off the elevator and walked to the cars. She touched the button on the key to know which car key she had chosen. The light of the black Lamborghini Urus went off and she started walking towards it.
As Caroline approached the SUV, Liam ran towards her. “Caroline, stop. Caroline!” She got on the SUV and drove away. Liam got on the Porsche Cayenne next to the Lamborghini Caroline just took.
Caroline drove through the streets of New York City with eyes blurred with tears. Her cellphone rang nonstop. She began to speed, and Liam continued to chase after her. She answered the phone call to stop the maddening sound of the ringing phone. “What do you want? Leave me alone!”
“Please, listen to me. I don’t have anything to do with her, I promise,” said Liam over the phone. “I am sick and tired of your promises and your lies. If you had nothing to do with her, why is she staying at the penthouse? Why did you give her my room?”
“Caroline, you are going too fast. Slow down.” Caroline shouted, “I told you to leave me alone!” Liam exclaimed, “Caroline! Be careful! Caroline!” Liam stopped the car and got off. He instantly called an ambulance.
In the hospital, Caroline laid in a hospital bed whilst the doctor told her the bad news. “We were able to save you, but we couldn’t save your baby.” Caroline placed her hand on her abdomen and remembered what happened right before the accident. Tears started streaming down her face. “I am sorry, Ms. King.”
When the doctor stepped back into the room hours later, he gave more shocking news. “Ms. King.” The doctor took a deep breath before speaking. “Ms. King, your uterus suffered some irreparable damages due to the accident.” Caroline asked, “meaning?” The doctor paused before answering the question. “Meaning you might never be able to have children.”
Four years later, Caroline stood out on the terrace whilst holding a mug of the perfectly brewed butterfly pea flower tea. The warm wind of the Miami breeze brushed against her smooth skin as she looked out the horizon. She was lost in thought, remembering the incident of four years ago. “Mommy!” The loud call of the toddler approaching her brought her back from her thoughts. She placed the mug she held on a nearby glass coffee table and walked closer to the toddler. She couched down and extended out her arms. She picked up the toddler and gave her a sweet kiss on the cheek. “Good morning, Mia.”
“Good morning, mommy.” Caroline smiled at the sound of her little girl’s voice. “Where is your brother?” Caroline walked out of her bedroom and made her way towards the giant spiral staircase. She walked all the way to the breakfast room while carrying the little girl. She stepped inside and said, “good morning.” She walked closer to the oval-shaped dining table.
“Good morning,” Mark answered. “Good morning, mommy.” Caroline smiled at the sound of the toddler’s cute voice. She leaned in and placed a peck on the little boy’s head. “Good morning, Ian.” Caroline sat Mia on the chair then she took a sit, in the middle of both children. Taekyung walked inside the breakfast room, brightly illuminated by the sunlight coming from the windows, and said, “good morning.”
“Good morning, uncle Tae,” said both children at the same time. Taekyung took a seat next to Mark. Mark smiled and spoke, “good morning.” Right then, Elizabeth stepped inside the breakfast room and said, “good morning, everyone.”
Now that they were all gathered at the table, Mia and Ian picked up their forks to eat their food. “It’s so great that we are all here like one big happy family,” Elizabeth commented. “Yes, I am so happy that we are all here like this,” Caroline agreed. “I am happy that you agreed to live here, Taekyung. The kids love playing with Chocolate.”
Taekyung look up to meet Caroline’s gaze and said, “I can’t believe you let me live here because of my dog.” Mark laughed. In that instant, Caroline felt something rubbing against her ankle. She looked down under the table and giggled. “Brownie, what are you doing there?” As soon as Caroline called the sable-colored ferret’s name, the toddlers instantly looked under the table. “Caroline.” Caroline looked up to meet Elizabeth’s gaze. “What is it, mom?”
“What do you know about your cousins or Sebastian and Persephone?” Caroline responded, “mom, I lost contact with them four years ago. I don’t know anything about them.”
“You haven’t tried reaching out to them?” Caroline shook her head. Then Mia interrupted, “mommy, can you take us to school today?” Caroline looked to her left and met eyes with the cute little girl next to her. “You don’t like your uncles taking you to school?” Mia shook her head. “My friends always go to school with their mom and dad. I want you to take me to school.” Caroline placed her hand on Mia’s head. She softly stroked her silky fawn-colored hair and said, “okay, I will take you to school today.”
Caroline smiled, unable to say no to her little girl. Though she was aware of how much she was spoiling her, she did not care. She would do anything for her children. Since the children started going to school, Mark and Taekyung have taken care of taking them to school. They took it more as part of their routine rather than a task they were obligated to do. Caroline did not take the twins to school that often. She did not want to be recognized. After all, she wanted the twins to have a normal life, away from gossips and the fame she has earned through the years.
After having breakfast, Caroline was about to leave when Taekyung offered, “I can take them to school.” Caroline smiled and looked down at the twins. “Who do you want to take you to school? Uncle Taekyung or mommy?”
“Mommy!” Mia exclaimed. Caroline laughed. “Sorry, Taekyung. They prefer their mother.” Taekyung gave her a glare. Caroline turned around and started making her way towards the door while holding hands with both children. As soon as she stepped out of the mansion, the chauffeur fetched the black Range Rover.
The chauffeur parked the SUV in front of her and she opened the door back door and sat Ian on the car seat. She closed the other door and walked to the other door. She opened the door and sat Mia on the car seat. She sat on the driver’s seat and drove away.
When she arrived at the private school, she parked the SUV and got off. She opened the door and unbuckled Mia’s seatbelt. She helped Mia off the SUV before going to the other door. She opened the other door and help Ian off the SUV. She held the twins’ hands and led them into the preschool. Her radiant smile, her natural beauty, and the beautiful children alongside her caught the attention of many parents.
"Everyone is starting. This is why I don’t like to take the twins to school,” Caroline thought. At the entrance, Caroline crouched down and looked at the twins. “Your uncles will come to pick you up, okay?” Ian nodded. “Okay, mommy,” Mia responded.
Caroline pressed a sweet peck on Ian’s forehead then Mia’s. “Okay, go inside. Ian, take care of your sister.”
“Yes, mommy.” They said their goodbyes and the toddlers went inside the preschool. Caroline stood back up and turned around. She was going to make her way back to the car when she was stopped by a woman with highlights on her hair, heavy makeup, and brightly colored long nails. “Hello, I am Gloria Gonzalez. Nice to meet you.” Caroline looked at the woman with a confused look on her face. Caroline shook the woman’s hand and said, “Caroline King.”
“I have never seen you here before and I never forget a face. I can guarantee I would never forget a face like yours. Are you a model?” Caroline chuckled. “I saw you were with the twins. Are you the mother of Ian and Mia King?”
“Yes, I am.”
“I am the PTA president and I am just surprised to finally meet their mother.” Caroline at the dazzling diamond watch on her wrist and said, “I was nice meeting you, but I must go.” Caroline was about to leave when the woman stopped her again. “You know, my daughter is friends with Mia and Ian. Why don’t we get together sometime so the kids can play together?” Caroline did not want to seem impolite, so she lied, “sure.”
“Great. How about we-.” Caroline looked at her ringing phone and was relieved when she saw the caller ID. “Now I can get rid of this woman.” Caroline answered the call and told the woman, “I have to go.” Caroline placed the cellphone on her ear and said, “what is, Joseph?” Caroline walked away as she continued to speak with her assistant.
When Caroline arrived at the mansion, she got off the SUV and went inside. She went to the living room where she found Mark leaning back against the sofa. “Shouldn’t you be at school right now?” Mark looked at her and responded, “shouldn’t you be at work right now?”
“I am the boss. I can go whenever I want.”
“And I have one lecture in the afternoon.” Caroline thought for a second then said, “when you go drop the kids at school... have you ever encountered a weird woman? She said she is the PTA president.” Mark laughed. “She saw you?” Caroline nodded. “She is annoying. Try to avoid her. Whenever Taekyung and I go to take the twins, she is always there. Just waiting to talk to us. I don’t know but she is weird.”
“Yeah, I noticed.” Caroline sat down next to Mark and said, “where is Taekyung?”
“He left after you left.”
“Oh, okay.” Caroline moved closer to Mark and said, “when are you going to shoot your shot?”
“Oh, come on. Don’t pretend like you have had a crush on him for the longest time and haven’t done anything about it.” Mark pinched Caroline’s cheek and said, “could you not stick your nose where it doesn’t belong?” Caroline slapped his hand off and responded, “I’m just trying to help my little brother. Don’t you think it is time for you to start dating?”
“I say that to you, too. It has been four years-.”
“Mark, I don’t need anyone. I am happy the way I am. From now on, I will only focus on raising my kids.” Caroline stood up from the sofa and left the living room. She went up the stairs and went to her bedroom. She walked inside her spacious closet filled with designer clothing. She grabbed a designer handbag and went to the entrance.
The chauffeur fetched the red Lamborghini Urus for her. Caroline got on the latest SUV model and drove to her company.
When she arrived, she got off the SUV and the valet took her car. She walked towards Joseph, who was waiting for her outside of the building. They went inside the building together. Employees were making way for Caroline as she passed by.
When Caroline entered her office on the top floor of the building, she sat on her chair and Joseph began telling her today’s agenda. As soon as he finished, it was time for a meeting. Caroline stood up and made her way towards the elevator as she read some documents. As they walked to the meeting room, Joseph delivered the bad news, “the New York branch seems to be doing worse.” Caroline let out a sigh. “What is the CEO doing?”
“He is on vacation right now.”
“At a vital time like this? Clear my agenda for tomorrow. We’re going to New York. I will personally solve this problem. And get me in contact with Mr. Parker after the meeting.”
“Yes, Ms. King.” Caroline handed Joseph the iPad and walked ahead to the meeting room. She stepped inside the room filled with other executives. “Gentlemen, please. Have a seat.” Caroline sat down at the corner of the large rectangular table and the meeting began.
After a long day of work, Caroline drove back to the mansion, just in time for dinner. As soon as she walked in, Mia ran to her. Caroline crouched down with her arms open to hug her little girl. Then, Ian walked closer to them. She spread her arms, inviting his son to her hug. “I missed you, my little angels.” She placed a kiss on both toddler’s forehead. “Did you miss mommy?” They both nodded. Caroline tightly hugged them once more before saying, “come on, let’s wash up to have dinner.”
After washing their hands, they made their way to the dining room table. They took a seat where Elizabeth, Mark, and Taekyung were waiting for them. “How was school today?” Asked Elizabeth. “Good, abuela,” responded Mia. Elizabeth smiled as she admitted, “I love it when she calls me that.”
“What about you, Mark? How did it go?” Mark answered, “it was alright.”
“You know you have to study and work hard, right?” Mark looked at Taekyung and said, “yeah, I know. But it’s hard... I do study, and sometimes it’s barely enough.” Caroline looked at Mark and said, “it’s not hard, you just have to study more.”
“That’s easy for you to say. You became one of the fastest-growing business tycoons. Your name is in almost everything. Your children will never have to work a day in their life.” Caroline laughed. “But they will. I will not raise them to be spoiled. Though I can give them everything, I will not spoil them. Right, Mia? Ian?”
“Yes, mommy,” replied Ian. Caroline smiled. And reached out her hand to caress Ian’s head. They continued to have their routine family dinner. This became their routine since Caroline and Taekyung moved into the mansion.
When Caroline found out she was pregnant, she continued to travel the world and expand her business. She continued with her work until her stomach grew enough to show. She then moved into the mansion with her mother. Then, she asked Taekyung to move in with them. Caroline did not want to raise the twins alone. She wanted them to be with their grandmother and uncles. They wanted to stay together as a family.
After having dinner, Caroline got the twins ready for bed. She tucked them both in and was about to leave when Mia said, “mommy, can you read me a story?”
“Of course.” Caroline grabbed the twins’ favorite book from the bookshelf and sat on the giant teddy bear in between both beds. She opened the book and read, “Le Petit Prince.” Caroline wanted the twins to learn as many languages as she did. It would be a shame if they only learned one language. Thanks to her brother and mother, the twins caught both English and Spanish rather quickly. They manage to learn both languages and now, Caroline took the task to go for French.
When the twins fell asleep, Caroline put the book back on the bookshelf after placing a peck on both Ian’s and Mia’s forehead. She opened the door and left the dimly illuminated bedroom. She went down the stairs to get a glass of water and found her mother sitting on the outdoor lounge. Caroline walked out to the lounge and sat on the armchair next to Elizabeth.
“Mom, I have to go on a business trip tomorrow. Can you take care of the twins?”
“Yes, muñeca. Where are you going?”
“New York, I will go for a few days. I should be back before Sunday.” Elizabeth looked at Caroline with a surprised look. Just before Caroline could say anything, Taekyung and Mark joined them. Chocolate was also behind them.
Over the years, the dog’s name changed to “Chocolate.”
Taekyung sat next to Caroline and Mark handed Caroline her ferret. “I will be away for a few days on a business trip. Please take care of Brownie for me. You have to be very careful with her. If anything happens call her caretaker.”
“Caroline, you are more worried about your pet than your kids,” Mark commented. “She is not only my pet. She is our pet. Well, she is mainly mine, and I also care a lot about my children. I know they will be in good hands.” Caroline petted the ferret on her lap. “Also, remember to take the twins to their piano lesson tomorrow.”
“They are three years old, Caroline. Don’t you think they are a bit young to learn how to play the piano?” Caroline countered, “Mark, I was four when I started learning.”
“When do you plan on leaving?” Taekyung asked. “Tomorrow after breakfast. I can’t leave before saying goodbye to my little angels.” Caroline yawned and said, “I will go pack. Good night.” Caroline stood up from the armchair whilst holding the ferret in her arms.
“Why did you let her get that ferret, again?” Mark uttered while looking at Elizabeth. Before she could say anything, Caroline spoke without turning around, “I heard that.” Caroline continued making her way towards her room. She placed the ferret rest on the bed and then she went to her closet to pick out her outfit. She did not plan on packing that much since she would go to her penthouse, which was still intact.