The next week became crazy, we barely had a minute to ourselves, my grandfather was keeping me busy. I hadn’t been able to get near my brother Jason and now it was the night of the gala.
The dress I had been given was a corseted deep blue floor length dress which hugged every curve and showed a little too much than I liked of my breasts.
The lace on my corset bore the family crest, a sign of my grandfather watching every move I made and making sure everyone knew whose property I was.
“This has to be a joke” I sneered as Taylor dropped by, ready to take me to the gala.
“If that corset goes down any further, we will see your nipples…” He grumbled trying to help me pull it up, but it was no use, it wouldn’t budge, at least I knew it wouldn’t fall and show my whole breast.
“Bradley’s going to go nuts” I state, and Taylor grimaced knowing his temper.
“Is there a jacket or something?” He asked looking around me, but all that was left was the Blue rose mask that went with the outfit. Taylor sighed.
“Have you seen my brother?” I asked.
“Which one?” He whispered as we left the room.
“He’s downstairs with your uncle. He’s sticking to him like glue” I nodded happy that Jason wasn’t alone with Gregory or Grandpa.
“Samantha, don’t you look a vision” Grandpa smiled predatorially catching us talking at the top of the stairs.
“Looks just like her mother” Gregory answered as he joined him.
I felt sick, I knew they were just seeing the money signs in their brains, thinking they could sell me off to the highest bidder.
“Is that Louisa’s dress?” Karlos called out as he looked shocked up the stairs, his look told me this was the dress they had use to sell my mother off.
“Yes, and doesn’t she look the spitting image of her mother. Now may I have a moment with my granddaughter alone, we will meet you in the car” He ordered, and they all nodded doing as they were told. My brother looked at me, searching my face for a sign I was ok, I nodded, I needed to get him on his own.
“Let me put on your mask for you” He began as he spun me round placing the mask on firmly.
“Tonight, marks a very important night for me Samantha and I do hope you will behave. The men you are to woo could be potential partners…”
“Business partners?” I interrupted and he glared at me.
“Yes, a type of business partner, and I do hope that you mingle with these men at all times, you are to accept all offers to dance and I will be watching your every move. I do, however, have a little treat for you. In the basement there is a man that is responsible for part of your mothers’ death” He smirked as my eyes widened in shock.
“What?! Who?” I hoped it wasn’t Luka, I prayed it wasn’t him.
“Let’s go take a look, after the party he will be killed, by you” He boomed as we walked down to the basement.
My head was reeling, I was suddenly more scared than I had ever been before.
As we neared the bottom of the stairs a slumped over form was sat tied to a chair. My grandfather walked up to him and lifted his head by the hair.
I gasped before trying to hide it quickly.
In the chair was Trent Jennings, my real father.
“Something the matter dear?” Grandpa grinned evilly.
“Who is he?” I tried to distract him, but Trent was looking at me, recognizing my face I could see the color drain from his face.
“She looks like her mother doesn’t she, Trent? Beautiful and will raise quiet a few heads at the gala, just like her mother did.” Trent wriggled hard beneath him trying to talk, to shout at him.
Grandpa hit him hard in the face and I grimaced.
Grandpa caught me though.
“Do you feel for this man? He’s the reason your mother is dead!” Grandpa got in my face before landing a slap on my cheek.
“I’m sorry” I lowered my head, hoping he would take it as submission.
“Good girl, now you will come to the party and you will do as you are told. Then when the party is over you will kill this man. Only you will do it” He ordered as he dragged me back up the stairs, I got a final look at my father as he screamed for me, but I had to ignore it.
Grandpa was going to have me kill my father.
This couldn’t happen.
We were in trouble.
He straightened his shirt and tie, wiped a tear from my face and led me out of the house and up to the blacked-out cars outside.
This was going to be a long night.
I was in the back of the car with my Grandfather while Taylor drove and Greg in the front, Karlos had Jason and Brian in the other car. I hoped that Karlos took this chance to talk to him or we were screwed.
Greg turned on the radio.
“Witness reports finding the body of Tracey Reys, nurse from the local hospital, in the lake this morning, police conclude that she committed suicide…” Greg turned it back off.
“Oh dear, sorry dear, we don’t need to hear that dreadful news do we” Greg didn’t think I noticed his smirk that he kept on his face.
Tracey, my mothers’ best friend was dead, and I know they had something to do with it!
I tried not to look at Taylor, so not to give us away.
I took out my phone and went to text Bradley.
“Why would you bring THAT with you? Put it away now!” Grandfather shouted at me, I flinched.
“I was just making sure the boys were all doing their jobs properly, they are still my men after all” I tried.
“Taylor. Are you all quite capable of working without my granddaughter to coddle you all” He challenged.
“Yes sir. The others are in separate cars in front and behind us. It’s all taken care for. Even Shaun is back” He answered quickly.
“What!?” I shouted. It was way too soon for him to be back.
“Shaun knows how to do his job Sam, he will be fine, we caught him up on tonight’s proceedings” Taylor added with a knowing look before looking back at the road.
“See? Now put the phone away or I will take it from you like a child” Grandpa ordered as I slid it into my clutch bag.
Tonight was not going well at all.
We soon arrived at the mansion that the gala was being held at and I looked all around me as I got out, surveying the area.
I watched as Karlos got out of the car behind us, searching my half-covered face for a sign of whether I was ok.
I shook my head slightly while Greg and my grandfather weren’t looking.
“Dad, would you mind if I have a quick chat with my niece for a moment, its just she looks so like her mother, I need a moment” Karlos tried.
“Must you? You have one minute” Grandpa ordered and Karlos grabbed my hand and quickly walked me up the path out of their range of hearing.
“What happened? Why the hell is your cheek red?” He looked angry.
“Trent, he’s got Trent in the basement, he wants me to kill him after the party, I accidently gasped when I saw him, I think he knows I know, he slapped me. What about Jason? Did you tell him? Why is Shaun here?!” I said quickly and Karlos’ got angrier.
“Shit. I will deal with Trent… somehow… He will pay for that slap. Jason knows, he’s a little shocked but he took it well, I have Brian on him all night and Shaun was James’ fault. He blabbed and Shaun wouldn’t take no for an answer.” He said before straightening up quickly looking behind me.
“Samantha, come now” Grandpa ordered again, and I gave my uncle a quick squeeze and whispered in his ear.
“I’m scared, I love you uncle” then I turned swiftly towards Grandpa and Greg who took one of my arms each.
“Ready?” Greg asked his eyes peered through my mask.
“Yes, let’s go” I said straightening my back with a fake confidence.
The guys were not dressed in masquerade as they were security, so I spotted Bradley straight away and he looked furious as he took in what I was wearing.
“Doesn’t she look a peach Bradley” Greg smirked, I winced, they knew, oh shit they knew.
The guys would have to move quick.
“Hadn’t noticed sir, I’m busy doing my job sir” he tried to pull it off but failed as Greg noticed his gaze.
I saw my Grandfather go for his gun but grabbed his arm quick as a flash.
“Who am I wooing first?” I sidled up to him, dragging him and Greg with me. I breathed a sigh of relief as we got into the building and away from Bradley.
The huge hall was decorated in beautiful black and blue roses, the sign of our crest
“Good evening Sir, would this be your lovely granddaughter?” A man sauntered up to us bowing slightly at him.
“Yes, would you like a dance with our girl?” He looked at him calculated.
“Aye, I would, ma’am?” He offered his hand and I took it as he led me to the busy dance floor, a slow orchestra filling the air.
“You look beautiful tonight” The man whispered as he brought me tight to his chest, feeling my breasts against him made me feel sick. His hand began to creep towards my ass as he squeezed. I tried to pull away and his hold got tighter.
“Don’t you dare” He growled, hurting my fingers he held in one hand squeezing the fingers that had just healed up.
I nearly cried every minute he held me like that, his hands drifting all over me.
“Excuse me, may I have a dance with the lady?” Another voice called as he was tapped on the shoulder. I breathed a sigh of relief as the man gave the other daggers of a look before releasing me into his arms.
“Is your hand ok?” The man asked, I looked into his masked eyes and that’s when I noticed who it was.
“Luka. I thought he was going to break them again” I breathed, realizing it was my other brother.
“I saw as soon as I got in. Karlos told me dads in your basement. I’m leaving soon to get him. I just wanted to see you first, make sure you were ok. We haven’t been able to talk since that night at Bradley’s” Luka spoke quietly as not for others to hear us, speaking in my ear like a lover might whisper sweet things to trick Greg and my grandfather.
“Get to him quick and get out. Don’t worry about me. Get him out, take Bradley, he doesn’t need to see this” I said as he looked into my eyes with a sigh.
“Ok. But we will be back for you. I will not lose you again” He sighs again.
“Can you get Jason out?” I ask worried about my other brother.
“I don’t know Sam; it would be difficult. Bradley might be difficult as it is”. he replied.
“Just try, promise me you will try and get them all safe. Damien’s waiting at his house ready if shit hits the fan. Take Jason there if you can at least” I answer but I am soon tapped on the shoulder for another dance.
“Thank you for your dance Ma’am, you truly are a sight to behold, I hope your night goes well” Luka said leaving with a kiss on my hand as I was turned briskly round to another heavy handed man who liked feeling me up.
My grandfather was watching eagle eyed at me, watching my every move as I went from man to man and after every dance, they met him and talked quickly. Taking what I guessed were their bids for me.
“Excuse me, I need to go to the ladies’ room” I said quickly needing a break from the octopus that wouldn’t stop groping me.
He looked at me with anger filled hatred as I walked briskly off.
“Where are you going?!” Greg shouted at me as I went past him and Grandpa.
“Ladies room” I said, and Grandpa nodded as I sighed in relief.
I turned into the empty hallway near the toilets, hidden from the crowd.
“Sam?” Shaun said rounding the corner behind me.
“What the hell were you thinking?” I whisper shouted.
“I had to do this. We have to keep you safe. No way was you leaving me out. I will be fine; pain meds are helping the ole’ wounds” He stated.
“Idiot. What’s going on out there? I haven’t had a minutes’ breath. Luka danced with me, said he would try to get Bradley and Jason out to get my dad from the basement” I rushed hoping no one was going to start looking for me.
“Luka got out…” He began before suddenly he was knocked out cold.
“Grandpa…” I stuttered at his looming form.
“My, my girl, you have had quite an evening. I have decided to bring forward tonight’s festivities, join me now Samantha!” he growled dragging me with him to a stage at the foot of the staircase.
“Good evening ladies and gentlemen! Welcome to the Midnight Rose’s annual gala. Tonight was the chance for my granddaughter to meet her potential partner and this shall be decided by the highest bid, which I have taken into consideration and after this festivity I will announce who gets my granddaughters hand in marriage!” The crowd applause and I look panicked to the edges of the room, seeing some of the guys in shock at the scene unfolding.
My uncle, Brian, Rob, Wayne and James all stood like statues.
I couldn’t see Bradley or Jason anywhere and I knew Shaun was out cold. I looked straight at my uncles dread written face as he caught my eye, I kept swiping my eyes to the corridor, to which he followed and whispered something in Brian’s ear and Brian slunk slowly out the room without notice.
James’ eyes went wide as he heard something in his earpiece. His eyes darting towards the hallway. A tear slid from my cheek.
“Now! To the festivity! My darling granddaughter has no idea that her father, Gregory is himself a well-known member of our society, heading his own gang to which our members were integrated since his marriage to my daughter. Now we are here to initiate his two children Jason and Samantha!” He booms as Greg drags Jason out from behind the stage in a panic.
“No” I shook looking at my brother with fear in both our eyes.
“Now many of you know the story of my fair daughter and her disgusting ways with an opposition named Trent Jennings” The crowd booed pantomime style.
“So we have bought a very special treat for you all” Greg continued from my grandfather.
Three people were dragged out with sacks on their heads, their legs swiped from below them as they fell to the ground.
“Don’t do this” I whimpered as grandpa slapped me hard it caused the crowd to cheer.
The sacks were taken off the three peoples heads to show my worst nightmare.