It was her; he was certain. He looked over to Zeki, his new security guy, and said.
‘That girl over there, with the red hair. Follow her and whatever the fuck you do. Do not lose her. And let me know where she goes.’
‘Mr. Can. I’m supposed to be with you. There are not only press here, but there are also about seventy to a hundred people outside wanting to get a piece of you.’
Can thought he would lose his mind. Had it been Emma he saw at the club yesterday? He had thought it had been his mind playing tricks on him again. But maybe it had been her. His insides felt frozen and frantic at the same time.
‘Your job is to do, whatever the fuck I ask you too. And if you lose that girl. You’ll be unemployed.’
That did the trick. He watched Zeki run to catch up with Veronica.
It had to be her. He was certain. And this was his first lead on Emma in over a year.
His heart squeezed at the thought of her. He never let himself think of her in the daylight. The thoughts and memories of her came creeping up on him at night-time. When it was dark and silent.
Over a year, and he could still smell her scent, taste her kisses, and feel her touch.
Jesus Christ, he was going to lose his god damn mind. Over a year and no word. He hadn’t known if she was dead or alive. She just vanished into thin air.
He could still remember their last conversation before they parted. She hadn’t even allowed him to drive her to the airport. Too much attention.
She had held him close, kissed him, and whispered.
‘Don’t worry, give me a few weeks, and I’ll be back. And we will start our life together.’
It hadn’t been the start of anything. It had been the end. And it had broken him.
The not knowing was almost harder to bear than not having her with him. God. He missed her. Would have given anything, sacrificed his soul for another day with her.
For the first time in over a year, he felt hope. And hope was a dangerous thing.
Hope was the enemy of any heartbroken person out there. Because even though it should, it rarely, if ever left you. It resided in that small part of your soul; you didn’t let anyone see. That tiny hope within you was the only thing that kept you alive. But at the same time, it crushed you again and again.
Once hope was gone. If you ever managed to rid yourself of it. Then you could at least have been able to start dealing with the ashes of your burnt dreams. That would have been a start. But he had never gotten there. Never been able to fully let go. And now he felt the rekindling of that tiny light inside of him. That told him things would be ok. There would be a happy ever after all. There was no other possible outcome. It couldn’t end like this. Wasn’t supposed to end at all.
Twenty minutes went by before the call came.
‘Zeki? Where did she go?’
‘Pera Palace, Mr. Can.’
‘Was she with someone. A short blonde woman?’
‘No, she was by herself.’
‘Are you sure?’
‘Completely. She walked in on her own five minutes ago and hasn’t come back out.’
‘Then stay there, I’ll be right over. If she leaves again, you follow and let me know.’
‘I should be there with you.’
‘I can handle the press and a few fans. It may take me a bit, but I can handle it on my own. You just stay put. And do what I ask. I’ll see you soon.’
With that, he hung up.
Pera Palace. They were back to the place they’d stayed just over a year ago when he had first met her. He would go there and refuse to leave until he saw her. He would demand an explanation.
And then he would get her back. He didn’t care how he did it, what he had to do.
He could feel the adrenaline pumping through him. He was fucking furious, hurt beyond belief, heartbroken. But strip everything else away, the bottom line was.
He just wanted her back.