♠ RIA ♠
EPISODE •• FORTY ••TWO
THEME:COVERED UP AND CLEANED ????
RIA POV ????♀
Ethan led me to his car and he opened the car door for me to go in. Then I saw an old picture on the seat.
A picture of a boy and a girl.
I sat in the car still staring at the picture.
“When did we take this picture?” I asked Ethan
The girl in the picture was me. And I could recognize myself because right after i came back from China I saw the pictures Andrea and I saved up when she was alive.
The boy in the picture looked like Ethan.
We looked happy
“On your 15th birthday”
I sat in front of a cake with a birthday cap on. Ethan stood behind the chair with a bright smile on his face.
I remember vividly, that year Ethan brought a cake very early that morning. My parents couldn’t afford to buy me cake cause there was not enough money. They only managed to give me gifts. Mom made a dress for me which I wore on that day while my dad bought me a new sandals.
Ethan didn’t mention it the day before that he was going to buy me a cake. He just showed up with one that morning.
I couldn’t see it because I was blind but I tasted it. Ethan was 19 years old then and he worked as a Janitor in a Bank and at night in Gas Station.
“You still remember?”
He asked and I nodded
“Ethan perhaps.. Do you still have my parents pictures with you? I don’t have any..and I haven’t gotten the chance to see their faces and how they looked since I had my surgery done”
I’d appreciate just one! A picture of us together.
“I do..actually I have a lot of them. And that was why I said we have a lot to talk about”
Happiness surged through me at Ethan words
Finally, I can see now..how my parents looked before they both died.
I smiled at him
Ethan started the car and it moved Into motion.
“Remember I was out of town when -”
“That incident happened”
I completed his statement
Ethan left town that year..just two days before the incident. He had always wanted to be a Model..that was why he worked on his body at the local gym center in Idaho. He had tight muscles, strong arms and well sculpted chest..just like how he is now..but he wasn’t this big back then. I could tell cause I knew what he looked like with my active sense of touch. The way I used to recognized my parents.
Ethan didn’t get the chance to further his education in college. He was raised by his Grandma. His parents died in a car crash when he was 8,only him survived the crash.
His plans was to work and save up for his Tuition fees.
He didn’t have any idea how to become a model until Ethan came to our house one night and said that his dreams was going to come true soon. He explained that a man came to the Gas Station and and asked if he was a model? He told him no but that was his dream. The man liked the fact that Ethan was fit and well built-in. Then he gave Ethan his card and it happened that the man runs a modeling agency.
He couldn’t express how happy he was when he came to our home that night. And we were all happy that everything was working out for Ethan!
He met with the man and in the end Ethan had to leave town to pursue his dreams of becoming a model.
“My Grandma called and told me that your parents were shot and you were missing. I spoke with my boss and begged him to allow me come back to town. And Grandma couldn’t explain what happened until I watched the news. A witness who called the cops told the police that she saw the truck outside your home and she also heard gunshots too. No one could tell what really happened but every in town suspected that it could be the notorious gang.. MML. I went to the station and spoke with the detective in charge of the case but he couldn’t say much too. But The man was determined to find you and the whoever killed your parents. I worked with him secretly to find evidences in your home and it was there I took out some pictures”
“So what did you find?”
Ethan was silent
She said seconds later
“No evidence but I told Derrick what was on my mind”
“The Inheritance. I explained to him and told him your dad’s plans to take over the inheritance his father left him. And the call he had received from the lawyer that he has the permission to posses the money. I suspected Mr Frederick..cause I remember your dad wasn’t able to get a job because of his connection with the companies in Idaho. Derrick reasoned with me and said Frederick knew about the death of your parents. He promised to tell his boss about his findings so they could summon Frederick as a suspect”
“So they summoned him?”
“No” he replied after a long momentary pause
“Derrick got fired at work. I begged him to work undercover that I would pay him but he said he didn’t want any more problems. And not only that..he said there was a strong force behind the case..someone who was ready to do anything to cover up the case but he didn’t disclose the person to me. And I never saw Derrick after that day until two years ago when I travelled down to Idaho”
“Is that all?”
“No Ria. To my greatest surprise, Mr Frederick arranged your parents funeral. They were buried in The Robert cemetery. Then I knew Mr Frederick was somehow involved in the case. I had no doubt about it”
Ethan looked at me before focusing his attention on the road ahead.
“I searched Ria..I looked for you but didn’t find you. And few days after the funeral,the news had it that the cops found the body of a sixteen years old girl in the woods. It wasn’t your body but they confirmed it to be you. I have no idea how they managed to find another girl’s body. An almost decaying body…they staged it cause no one could recognize it..but I did. I never believed them cause I wondered how you made it to the woods alone and I was very familiar with your body -”
“It was lame. Everything they said wasn’t true”
I wiped the tears that dropped down my left cheek
“What happened after that?”
“A week after that day – they apprehended two men who confessed that they killed your parents”
“The leader said your dad refused to pay back the money he borrowed from him”
I shook my head slowly
“That wasn’t true”
“Yes I know cause the Mr Nathan I know never borrowed any money. He was contented with the little he had”
“And the cops believed them?”
“But what about the witness that testified that she saw the truck,heard the gunshots and called the police”
“Exactly Ria.. The woman said she saw five people in black outfits but later she confirmed it that it was those two men she saw that day. She claimed that she wasn’t really sure of the number…She Changed the story to prove that those two people killed your parents. And the leader confessed that he took you away when he heard the siren and they killed you in the woods and left your body in the woods. They closed the case after the confession and no one knew what they did to those men”
Frederick covered up his crimes neatly
“Do you know the witness?”
“Yes..she was your neighbor”
She lived next to our house. She was a single mother of two kids. I wonder what Frederick had given her to make her change her words.
Probably he offered to pay her kids fees and provide their needs.
“How did you find me?”
“I saw you on TV. I hardly believe it. I thought it was mere coincidence..like she was your look alike..but I became convinced when you mentioned that you used to be a blind girl with a dream of becoming clothe designer. The Ria Robert I knew was blind and she had the same dream too. And also the new Ria looked like my Ria. The dimple,the smile and hair..those things was enough to prove that she’s the old Ria but in the grown up version. The lady I saw on TV looked exactly like Mrs Madison. It couldn’t be coincidence..so I decided to find out. So I went to your store today and followed you to the institution and waited for you”
“Why didn’t you come to me?”
“Ria you were blind..you never saw my face and I wasn’t sure if you would believe me if I walked up to you and told you I was Ethan. And I was feeling guilty that I gave up on you easily.. I shouldn’t have given up on my search”
Ethan would never find me even if he didn’t give up on his search.
“Don’t feel guilty Ethan..you did your Best. And you couldn’t find me because I was locked up”
I was locked up by Lucas cause I never stepped out of that room until the day Andrea saved me out of that den
“I don’t know the location but I was in a den”
“Tell me what happened Ria”
I shook my head slowly
“You don’t want to know Ethan”
I blink back tears
He stopped the car. And I looked around, we were In a street with few passersby. It was getting dark.
I checked my watch – 6:45pm.
Ian will be worried about me
“I want to know what happened Six years ago. Ria what I’ve wanted was exposing Fredrick’s secrets because I know he was involved in your parents death. Tell me the truth Ria. If it was Frederick.. We can still make him pay.
” how? It been six years now”
“I will tell you how..after you tell me your side of the story”
“Yes Ethan.. Frederick killed my parents” I said
“I knew it” his hands tightened around the steering
“And he sent the MML gang to us”
He looked at me
“The money make life gang”
“Yes..and the witness was right. I was awakened by my dad’s loud cry that midnight.. I made my way to sitting room and I sensed five presence. They didn’t come for money -” I paused
“They asked my dad to sign some paper works which contained the transfer of inheritance to someone. Mom was shot at Dad’s refusal to sign those papers -” my voice trailed
Tears rolled down my cheeks
“The leader of the gang was Lucas..he told my dad to sign the papers to save me and along the line I figured Frederick sent them. I begged him to sign it and forget about the inheritance..though I had thought signing it would make them leave but I was wrong. Lucas shot my dad after he signed those papers. And I almost got shot too but Lucas didn’t pull the trigger at me. We all heard the sirens and while they debated among themselves what they would do to me”
That was the last thing i heard before i felt a sharp pain on my head and I blacked out.
“I woke up in strange place..i didn’t feel at home and I couldn’t accept that my parents were dead. Ethan it was hard and I wished Lucas just killed me”
“Where was that place?”
I sniffed and wiped my tears with my finger tips
“MML Den..Lucas took me with him” I paused
I wasn’t sure if I should tell Ethan what Lucas did to me
“Lucas kept you in his den?”
“That means he saved you and took care of you”
And I wished that was how it was…that Lucas saved and took proper care of me without touching me.
Out gaze met but I looked away quickly.
I rubbed my palms together and tried to control my tears but it won’t stop..it flowed again.
Ethan placed his hand on mine
I withdrew from his touch and wiped my face
“Tell me what happened in that den”
“Lucas saved me and took care of me” my answer was immediate, concluding that Ethan doesn’t have to know what Lucas did to me.
“that’s all” I said In a low tone
“No” he muttered
“Ria you’re hiding some -”
“I think I should head home now”
Ethan grabbed my arm when I was about to open the car door
“Open up to me”
His voice was clear and his jaw tightened
My heartbeat rapidly
“There’s nothing to open Up about -”
I said shakily
“Nothing? And you want to leave…Ria look at me and tell me nothing happened in that den”
I shook my Head.
I couldn’t look at him.
“Perhaps did Lucas -”
I swallowed hard and cut him off
“Lucas saved me and took care of me”
And this time I looked at Ethan.
His hand dropped from my arm
“Okay…Ria I guess the six years of separation made us like this”
“No Ethan I don’t want to talk about it”
“I want to know” he said sternly
Then I heard the sound! Ethan locked the doors!
“And you’re not leaving until you tell me about it”
Ethan was stubborn! And he hasn’t change!
Totally different from Ian!
Ian Won’t pressure me to tell him stuffs I don’t wanna share with him.
“Ethan open the Car now”
“I want to go home!”
I was becoming aggressive.. And I feared what I would do if Ethan he doesn’t open the car.
So I controlled my myself and calmed.
Ethan won’t hurt me. He is not Lucas.
I chanted in my head
Ethan called in a soft voice
“please let me go” I whispered
“I know you want to tell me about it but something is holding you back – free yourself and open up to me”
And there was no arguing with him. Ethan won’t let me go if I didn’t tell him about it. He hugged me
“Lucas..Lucas came -”
“You can do it Ria..tell me”
“To me..and -”
I paused.. More tears dropping now.
Ethan held me tightly.
My body trembled as I worked the courage to tell Ethan.
“He force himself on me” I muttered
Ethan tensed up but he still held me tightly.
“Just that day?”
He asked and I sobbed
“No Ethan..I was with him for months and I became Lucas sex slave… He came to me every time he wanted to -”
“No..no Ria don’t call yourself a sex slave”
He released me and cupped my face in his large hands
“Then what would call someone who was used by a bunch of criminals. A sex machine or a sex toy cause it wasn’t…. just Lucas”
And I can’t possibly change that fact about myself. Lucas used me to pleasure himself..many times that i lost count. That even Lucas once called me his sex machine and speedy said I was Lucas sex pet the day he tried to force himself on me too.
I want to tell Ian about my past too but i just can’t each time I remember being a sex slave to Lucas..it tears my heart. And I feel that Ian will hate me.
That was why I said he deserved a better woman.
“You were not A Sex slave”
Ethan was silent
“I’m sorry”he said
Even a prostitute was better off than me! Because you don’t have to force on a prostitute..they come willingly as long as you’re ready to pay for their services.
“I’m so sorry”
He hugged him again
“I should be blamed..I shouldn’t have left town”
“No it wasn’t your fault Ethan..it would have happened even though you were in town”
“It was Frederick not you”
I saw the tears ony his face when I came out of his embrace.
“Even though once when I was in Lucas’s den I prayed for you to find me. And I never got mad at you because you didn’t find me. You were good to me Ethan”
I wiped his tears with my fingertips and he did the same to mine.
I drew in a deep breathe after we calmed.
“Frederick must pay for his crimes”
“Yes Ethan but how? It being six years now”
“Justice not revenge”
“Is that possible?”
“100%” he replied
“We just have to hire a private investigator here in Chicago to reinvestigate the case cause I don’t trust the cops on Idaho”
“But..the case has been filed and closed in Idaho”
“Yes..but we can still do it”
“I met Frederick’s son weeks ago..Drake Robert”
“I know him..I didn’t stop checking on Frederick’s profile”
“And isn’t there another way to get back at him?”
“What are you thinking?”
“Oh Ethan.. I wanted to kill him..myself”
“What?! That will cause problem for you..taking law into your own hands. If you kill Frederick you will end up in jail”
Well i never thought of the consequences.
But if I end up in jail what will happen to my kids,RRC and Ian?
I may never get to see them again.
What was I thinking?
Probably because the thought of revenge was foremost in my mind and it didn’t allow me think straight.
“You’re successful Ria..and you can’t just let His death bring you down”
“Yeah you’re right”
“Don’t worry the reinvestigation will work out”
“But..Frederick is powerful in Idaho..and I don’t see myself winning against him”
“I will check if we can request for transfer of case from Idaho to Chicago. Ria I promise you…Frederick won’t get away this time”
He grazed his knuckles on my cheek
“And I’m happy to see you again”
He smiled now
“I’m happy too Ethan”
I smiled back at him..a half smile though.
“You still have to tell me the rest of the story”
“It a long story Ethan”
“I want to hear it”
“Or someone is waiting at home?”
Ian is waiting for me!
“Yes..but at the store”
He look away and nodded.
Ethan started the car and it glided Into motion.
“You can still tell me the story..make it brief. We’ll discuss the rest of it another day”
Ethan hit the highway and I told him the rest of my story!
I’ve seen you at your worst and yet I still come around..
I remember I would tell you things I never shared with anyone cause I thought you would keep it safe..
My old friend! ”
♠ RIA ♠
EPISODE •• FORTY •• THREE
THEME: INTRODUCTION GOES WRONG! ????
°°°°°°° IDAHO °°°°°°°
FREDERICK POV ????
Phone conversation ????
“How are you doing Jack?”
I said to Jack Bryant as soon as he picked the call
“Oh! I’m fine Frederick”
“Well I just called to confirm the news that has been moving around like a wild fire in Idaho”
“It about this..clothes designer in Chicago”
“Oh! You mean Ria Robert?”
“Oh Yes! Ria Robert.. Do you know her?”
“Yes but I haven’t met her in person. I watched the news too and she’s pretty famous now in our state”
“You don’t know her?..but I heard it that your family is solidly behind her”
Jack rolled into laughter
I wanted to know if they were supporting Ria to know my stand. If she’s alone then it will be more easier to destroy her.
“Not all my entire Family Frederick.. Just my wife and son. Ian is in love with the lady. And he has done a lot for her”
I shut my eyes on hearing Jack’s words.
His son loves Ria. And his wife is also supporting her.
“And don’t you think Ria is just trying to extort from your son?”
“I’m just saying. Jack you know how women are..and talking about this women that used to be poor and hopeless…they are opportunists and I see them as gold diggers. And who knows Ria might be one. Don’t be surprised if she ends up taking all of your son’s money and use it to establish her business.. And then she will leave him”
Jack was silent
I couldn’t figure what he was thinking but I hoped that what I said was enough to convince him that Ria Robert shouldn’t be with his family.
“I don’t think Ria Robert is that kind of woman. She is not bad and she can’t be a bad influence to my son.. Or whatever it is you’re trying to say. I know my son Frederick, Ian won’t fall in love with a deceiver and my wife is always quick to sense deception..like she is sensitive. Perla would have figured out by now if Ria meant any harm for my son”
“Then what about you?”
“Me? Well I’m not so concerned about Ria Robert. But as much as my son loves her then I don’t have any choice. I have to accept her too. She’s apart of our family now”
“Okay” I muttered
I wasn’t expecting Jack to accept Ria. It seems she have all of them wrapped around her fingers.
How long has she been with Ian?
And I doubt it if they all knew about her past.
“So what about that deal you told me about?”
“Yeah..your son is yet to sign the deal”
“Frederick..let’s stay out of it.. I’m sure both of them will handle the deal..but I will still try to talk to Ian”
I hang up and threw my phone on the floor.
I shouldn’t deal with Jack or his wife..Ian should be my main target.
He is in love with Ria and I’m sure he will be willing to do anything for her just to win her heart.
I’m sure she hasn’t told him about me that why he hasn’t come for me.
So let’s see if he will keep loving her after he finds out what she used to be.
A Sex Slave to a Heartless Criminal!
I grinned wickedly
° RIA ROBERT COUTURE °
IAN POV ????
I paced Ria’s office. The time was 7:30pm and she hasn’t returned to the shop. Ria said she was in the taxi when I called around 4:45pm from the office to pick her up. I shouldn’t have believed her when she said she was in a taxi!
Or was she stuck in the traffic?
No! I passed the same routine and no traffic even the devise on my phone signified that there was no traffic on the highway.
I stood up and walked out of the office.
I shouldn’t sit around and wait for her.
“Mrs Elise -” I called
She was handling the supplies my company delivered a while ago while Loretta was taking stock of dresses with one other lady.
“Yes Mr Ian”
“I will have to go and check on Ria at the institution”
“Why don’t you just call her?”
“She is not picking up my calls when I called her earlier”
“I tried calling her too but it switched off. And it unlike her to come late to the store”
I nodded in agreement
“Please let me come with you to the institution”
“No you don’t have to Mrs Elise.. Just finish up your work”
I motioned toward the huge glass door and stepped out of the building.
Then I saw her. Ria was in a car that just pulled up in front of the shop.
My forehead creased when I noticed it wasn’t a taxi.
It was a BMW!
I frowned deeply when I realised Ria lied to me again.
And most of all she was with a man!
Pang of anger and jealousy shot through me as I watched her smile at the man in the car.
Then our gaze met but I didn’t smile back at her.
She turned to the man and said something to him.
Ria came out of the car and the man did the same too. And I couldn’t move from where I stood cause different questions flooded my mind.
Who is he?..
Why was she with him?
Why was she in his car instead of a taxi?
She was smiling at him..like she was happy with him.
It struck me that she was with his..that was why she didn’t want me to come and pick her up.
“Ian good evening”
Ria said when she came closer. The man stood behind her
I didn’t respond to her greeting.
I just stared at her.
I better be wrong this time!
I want to believe she must had a good reason For being with this man. And I hope it not what I’m thinking!
“Ian,meet my Friend Ethan Dantes” Ria introduced
“And Ethan this is Ian Bryant”
He reached out his hand for an handshake.
I looked at him.
Friend? And when did Ria started having Male friends?
The man was well built in than I was but we are the same height.
I shook hands with him
“Nice to meet you Ian. Ria already told me about you”
Wow! And she even told him about me!
For how long has she been meeting up with him?
“It a pleasure”
My answer was sharp
But Ria didn’t tell me anything about him.
I gave him a stern handshake and we both stared at each other for seconds before Ethan let go of my hand with a smile.
I gave him a half smile. I’m sure Ethan was wise enough to understand what the stern handshake means.
“I should head home now Ria”
He said to her
“Don’t you want to meet my team and get to see my shop?”
He wants to leave but she wants him to stay and introduce him to everyone.
Ethan looked at me and then back at Ria
“It running late..let’s do that some other time” he responded
“Okay” she said in a low tone
I studied her expression
She was Disappointed.
I tucked my hands in my pocket and clenched my fist.
I’m starting to sense some connection between them. Ethan entered his car and drove off.
Ria turned to face me
I drew in a deep breathe and relaxed
“You told me you were in a taxi”
“Yes I was in the taxi when you called -” I chuckled
“And you still ended up in a BMW. Now just tell me that the taxi broke down on the highway and Ethan offered you a ride. You accepted and talk to him in his car and now.. he is your friend”
She shot me a confused look
“No that didn’t happen” she said
“Then what happened? How did you end up in his car?”
I tried to keep my voice down.
I was annoyed or maybe jealous.. I don’t know!
“Why are you so mad at me?”
“Mad?now you think am mad…you didn’t allow me to come pick you at school but you let him drive you instead -” I pointed to no one In particular.
“Ian..stop jumping into conclusions and give me a chance to explain” Ria answered
“Who is he?”
“Ethan is my old Friend”
Now he is an old friend not a new one. I admit that I don’t know much about Ria.
“We grew up together in Idaho”
Yeah I know her hometown is Idaho! But she never told me she had a friend!
“So how long have you been meeting him?”
“I just him met him today”
Wait today?..oh! Maybe I’m just over reacting!
Wait up..Ria grew up blind so how did she recognized him to be the same old friend?
And as if she had read my mind when she said
“I didn’t recognize him when he stopped his car right in front of me. I thought he was one of those men who always offer women free ride so I just ignore him..but he chased after the taxi and when I couldn’t stand it..i went to him. I heard his voice and he also said some things that made It clear to me that he was my old friend”
“Okay..so you were with him all those times?”
“Yes” she replied sincerely
She was telling the truth
I over reacted.. And tried to make a big issue out of it.
It shouldn’t be!
I leaned in
“I was worried about you when I came to the store around 5:30pm and Mrs Elise told me that you were not in yet. And I should have called earlier before..but i didn’t want you to think I was monitoring you. I only called around 6:50pm and you didn’t pick up”
I flicked her hair from her face and tucked it behind her ear.
“Yes I saw the missed call but my phone went off when I was about sending you a text to inform you that I was with an old Friend”
She stepped backward and brought out her phone from her bag
“Look at it”
It was dead
“Yeah Mrs Elise told me”
“Ian I’m sorry I should have called the Moment I saw Ethan coming after me”
“It okay..and I’m sorry too.. I’m sorry for misunderstanding you. I was only surprised to see you with him”
I don’t want to think that Ethan will cause problem between me and Ria.
He better not get ideas in his head..cause I’m not going to let her go to him even if he is her old friend.
I pulled her in for a warm embrace.
I don’t Want us to be in a situation like this again..whereby I will be doubting Ria..or thinking that she’s lying to me.
Trust! That should be the major thing between us. We still have to learn to trust each other.
“Can we love now?
Cause I don’t wanna wait until the sun is down”
And Frederick is just planning ???? like Father like son ????