Luca you will be mine.., p.2
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       Luca - You Will Be Mine (Sicilian Mafia #2), p.2

           Jaimie Roberts
 
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Though she was getting on my last nerve, I gritted my teeth and sat down. “Sure. Eat your heart out. Belinda will show you where Luca is.”

  With a nod of her head, Isabella was out the door, leaving Tony standing there with a horrified look on his face. “Why didn’t anyone tell me?”

  Tony, having sensed my anger, started to panic. “It’s complicated. It’s not what you think. I’m sure Luca can explain.”

  I threw my pen on the desk and stood up again. “I’m sure he could. I have no doubt in my mind that this marriage is a sham. Her turning up almost four weeks after he was shot tells me as much. But it doesn’t take away from the fact that he lied to me. You’ve all been lying to me.”

  Seeing the pain in my face, Tony reached out for me, but I backed off. “I don’t need your fucking sympathy. I needed the truth.” Realising something, I started to laugh. “He asked me to marry him, knowing full well he was still married to someone else. God, can it get anymore fucked up then that?” I threw my hands in the air.

  “You don’t understand about Isabella. She trapped him. She forced this marriage. You have to believe that.”

  I smiled. “Oh, I can believe that all right, but tell me something. If she has him trapped, then how on earth was he going to get out of it in order to marry me, ha? Was he planning on having two wives? Because I certainly don’t play that way.”

  Tony shook his head and grabbed my shoulders. “No, of course not. He would have figured something out. I’m sure he would. I’m sure he will.”

  I was about to tell Tony I didn’t want him figuring anything out when Belinda came through the door. “Oh, Clara, I’m so sorry. He wants to see you. He’s being quite vocal about it actually.”

  My eyes widened. “If he thinks I’m going up there with her in the room, then he has another thing coming.”

  Tony looked even more panicked. “If you don’t go to him, then he will come and find you.” Tony’s eyes were pleading with me to do the right thing. What was the right thing? Luca had betrayed me. He had opened his heart to me the same way I had opened mine to him. I thought we held no secrets from each other. I could handle him killing his father; he did that out of self-defence. What I couldn’t abide by was him being married to another while he slept with me. I refused to be that woman—no matter what the circumstances were.

  “I need to get out of here.” I moved toward the door, but Tony blocked me. “Get out of my way, or so help me God, I will squish your nuts so badly that Belinda won’t be talking to me for a week. Do you get me?” Seeing I meant business, Tony reluctantly moved out of the way.

  “Where are you going?” Belinda raced down the stairs beside me, panic rising in her face.

  “I can’t stay here. Not now. I need to get away.”

  “What about Luca?”

  As I reached for the door to my car, I turned to Belinda. “He needs to take his meds at one o’clock. Make sure he gets them. I’ve left some food in the fridge for him if he wants to eat it. Isabella told me she was here to get her husband back. I suppose she can have him now if that’s what they both want.”

  Looking tenderly into my eyes, Belinda shook her head. “You and I both know that’s never going to happen.”

  I sighed. “Even if that’s not what Luca wants, it still doesn’t take away the fact that he’s married, and he failed to tell me. Whether this marriage is a sham or not, he is still someone else’s husband.” That thought alone tore my heart in two.

  Stroking my arm, Belinda smiled. “Where will you go?”

  I closed my eyes for a moment. “I don’t know. I just have to get away for now. I can’t be here, knowing that his wife is in there with him. I just can’t face him right now. I know I will have to, but I’m worried that I’ll do something stupid—like rip his heart out—if I stay.” I smiled at Belinda to try and lighten the mood. I was dying inside, but I didn’t want Belinda to think I was suffering as much as I truly was.

  Belinda rubbed my shoulder tenderly. “Okay, but don’t leave it too long. We’ll all miss you otherwise.”

  I suddenly felt guilty. “I’m sorry I’m leaving you with this. Maybe if you call my Aunt Trudy…”

  She squeezed my shoulder. “We’ll be fine. Go away for a couple of days, take some long deep breaths, and when you feel less murderous, come back.”

  Chuckling, I took Belinda into my arms. “Thank you—again.”

  “Don’t mention it, sweetie. Go. I’ll talk to Luca.”

  “Thanks.”

  Climbing into the car, I turned the ignition straight away, and I was off. The only things I had with me were my coat, bag, and phone. I dialled the number quickly and had to wait a few seconds before he answered.

  “Jeffrey?”

  “Clara, is that you?” He sounded shocked to hear from me.

  “Yes. Can I come and see you about something? You said if I ever needed any help I should call you.”

  “Of course. I’m on holiday in Scotland at the moment, though.”

  What is it about Scotland lately?

  When he heard me hesitate, he took a deep breath. “What’s the matter? Something’s happened. Where are you?”

  “I’m leaving The Castle. I’m not sure where I’m going.” I suddenly started laughing. This was a mess!

  “Listen, if you need somewhere to go, then come up to see me. You can stay here as long as you want. I will be leaving tomorrow anyway. It can be all yours, no questions asked.”

  My God, that sounded tempting. If Luca always holidayed in Scotland when he needed to think, then maybe that was where I should go too.

  Without my brain engaging, I found myself saying, “Yes, thank you. That would be lovely.”

  “Great! Are you going to fly?”

  I panicked again, but soon realised I had my passport in my bag. “I suppose I should.”

  “Okay. See if you can get a flight out to Inverness. I think there will be one in a couple of hours you can catch if you hurry. Text me the flight time, and I’ll come and pick you up.”

  I felt really bad. “I really don’t want to trouble you.”

  “It’s no trouble, Clara. I’ll see you soon.” Jeffrey abruptly put the phone down, and that was my cue to go like the wind.

  The whole journey there, my phone wouldn’t stop bloody ringing. I knew it was Arsehole, but I had decided I wasn’t ready to speak to him yet; I didn’t want to. I was too consumed with rage to see or talk with him.

  Once at the airport, I ran like the wind to the counter where I found I was in luck and able to catch the next flight out. Maybe that was fate’s way of telling me that was what I needed to do.

  It was only when I was sitting on the plane, waiting for it to take off, that I started to think more clearly. What if Jeffrey only invited me because he thought he could get me to play Mistress? Oh God, what had I gotten myself into?

  I was stewing on this for the whole bloody journey. Every time I thought about it, I just grew even angrier with Luca. He was the one who had put me in this situation. He had even made me run away from the one place I had always called home. The one place that was all mine until a few months ago. He had been taking over and taking everything from me for far too long.

  Now, it was time I started taking things back.

  Once I landed and went out into arrivals, I found Jeffrey looking unusually casual in a pair of jeans and a striped jumper. It seemed strange to me at first, but then I realised it was just because I normally saw him in a suit.

  “Clara, how lovely to see you.” Coming in for a hug, Jeffrey kissed my cheek.

  “Hi, Jeffrey. I’m sorry I’ve sprung myself upon you like this. I didn’t know where else to go.”

  He regarded me for a moment. “I must admit, this is the first time I have ever seen you look so troubled. Come with me. I have my car not far from here.”

  As we walked towards the car, I turned my phone back on. No matter how much I didn’t want to speak with Luca, I couldn’t completely shut myself off. Besides,
a part of me wanted to see if he had called. Sure enough, my phone alerted me straight away that I had a voicemail waiting. A part of me didn’t want to hear his voice, but the biggest part—the one that won out—really wanted to hear him.

  “Baby, please pick up. I need to see you. I need to explain. I knew you wouldn’t want me if you knew I was married. I wanted to tell you, but I was frightened of losing you. I don’t love her, Clara. I never have. She tricked me into the marriage; I've been trapped ever since. In the time we’ve been married, I haven’t touched her even once. Please, you must believe me.” Pausing a moment, he sighed. “I need to make you mine again.”

  I listened to the phone click and nearly sank where I stood. I had only been gone a few hours, and yet my body ached for him. My heart ached for him.

  “Tell me what’s happened. You look so distraught.”

  As Jeffrey drove, I looked out of the window pensively. “Is that one of Scotland’s famous lochs?” Jeffrey nodded. “It looks beautiful. Now I know why Scotland seems to be a favourite place to get away.” I sighed, realising I had to have this conversation with Jeffrey. He deserved an explanation after going out of his way to help me. “To be honest with you, I don’t know why I rang you. I just got a bit carried away.” Looking towards Jeffrey, I could see his frown. He didn’t utter a word. He just waited for me to explain.

  “Luca now owns a large portion of The Castle. It frustrates me that he has come into the one place I call home, and has completely taken over. I have no sense as to where I stand.” I buried my head in my hands and laughed. “I don’t even have any legal documents.” I shook my head at myself. “It doesn’t matter anyway. I just needed to get away.”

  He looked concerned. “Something’s happened between the two of you.”

  I laughed again. “You could say that. We were supposed to be getting married.”

  Jeffrey hitched his eyebrow. “Were supposed to? And, now you’re not?”

  “Well, it would be a bit difficult, since he’s already married.”

  Jeffrey looked pensively out of the window. “Oh.”

  I nodded. “Yeah, exactly. Oh.” I slunk myself back in the seat, feeling guilty. “I shouldn’t have done this to you. I’m sorry. Maybe if you could find a hotel for me, I could stay there for a couple of days.”

  Jeffrey shook his head with a smile. “Don’t be silly. I have a perfectly adequate home you can stay in. I would like to have someone in there anyway. It will just be empty otherwise. Just stay as long as you need. You will have to tell me when you leave, though, as I have a cleaner who comes in and does all the washing for me.”

  Remembering I had no clothes, I started laughing again. “I didn’t even bring a toothbrush. What a silly cow I am!”

  “Well, I think you can safely say that under the circumstances, your actions were perfectly normal. You’ve taken quite a bit of a shock today. Go easy on yourself.”

  Pulling over into a parking space, Jeffrey got out of the car and opened my door. “I’ll take you to some shops. You can get yourself an extra pair of clothes and whatever toiletries you need.”

  And, that’s exactly what we did. I had to hand it to Jeffrey; he was really sweet underneath that dark, hidden persona of his. He didn’t once try to flirt or show me that side of himself. It was almost as if the only time he changed was once Belinda shut that door.

  When we got back to the car with all my bags, I thanked Jeffrey profusely. “Don’t mention it,” he said with a wink of his eye.

  The rest of the journey to wherever we were going was made mostly in silence. I was too busy staring out of the window, appreciating how beautiful everything was. My phone wouldn’t stop interrupting me, though. Every time it rang, it was Luca. I had to switch the damn thing off in the end because if it was annoying me, then it must have been annoying Jeffrey too.

  “You will have to speak with him at some point. Even if it is to tell him it’s finished.”

  Just the mere mention of the word “finished” had my guts twisting. I didn’t want to finish with Luca. I loved him too much to let him go.

  My God, how sick and pathetic did that sound? No matter what the circumstances, he had made me his mistress—the other woman. I just couldn’t do that to myself. I had more pride in myself than that.

  Coming up to a gravelled driveway, I spotted this rather large, elegant-looking house. The house looked amazing, but that was not what I had my eye on. What I had my eye on was even more spectacular.

  “Jeffrey, this is beautiful. You have a house overlooking the loch.”

  Jeffrey smiled brightly as we came to a stop. “I know. As soon as I saw it, I had to have it. Apart from The Castle, this is my only form of escape from it all. I stay here, take walks, and read. I just completely shut myself off from the rest of the world.”

  Getting out of the car, I shut the door behind me. “Looking at this, I can see why you would.”

  Jeffrey smiled my way. “Let’s get you settled in, and then maybe we can have some lunch and go for a walk. I think it may be just what you need.”

  Feeling eternally grateful, I stared at him. “I really appreciate all this. You’re looking after me, and I’m grateful for that.”

  He waved his hands in front of him in a show of friendly dismissal. “Ah, it’s nothing. It’s actually the least I could do after all of the times you’ve looked after me.”

  I saw the glint in his eyes and smiled. “Let’s get going then. I have a feeling I’m going to pull your ear off with my chatter.”

  Hearing the blatant innuendo, we both walked towards the house, laughing loudly as we went. It felt good to laugh. Well, for a split second anyway.

  Walking in the door with all my bags in tow, I was immediately greeted by a great big Bernese dog. “Whoa there, tiger.”

  Jeffrey rushed towards me in a panic. “Sorry. He can get a little bit carried away with people at times. He’s being friendly, but some people can get frightened when they see this huge beast running towards them.”

  I dropped my bags and bent down a little to give his belly a rub. “That’s okay. He’s gorgeous. Aren’t you, little fella? Yes, you are. Yes, you are.” I giggled as he licked my face, and I almost fell over.

  “You’re a dog lover I take it?”

  I looked up to Jeffrey and nodded my head. “I always wanted a dog when I was little, but I was frightened to ever ask for one.” The minute I said it, I wished I hadn’t. Of course he was going to want to know why. “My parents were a bit strict. I knew they wouldn’t let me have a dog if I asked for one.” I looked sheepishly up to Jeffrey, and he just nodded his head. He didn’t question me, and I was glad of that.

  After having some lunch, we took a stroll outside with the lovely Benjie in tow. It was lovely to just run around, throwing balls and watching as he caught them in his mouth. I didn’t realise how much fun having a dog could be.

  “You know, my mum and dad never let me have a dog either. It was something I corrected once I left home. They weren’t the most loving parents either, shall we say.”

  Looking into Jeffrey’s eyes, I immediately saw the sadness there. In that moment, we shared something quite significant. Call it a bond, perhaps, but it definitely seemed we had something significant in common.

  Thinking about it some more, it made me wonder why Jeffrey was the way he was. I had grown into a domineering cow because of my parents. Jeffrey… Well, he seemed to go to the other extreme for some reason. It got me wondering about him. “Do you mind me asking a personal question?”

  Jeffery looked at me and smiled. “No, go ahead.”

  “Do you have a girlfriend?”

  Jeffrey laughed and threw the ball for Benjie. “No. I have no time for commitments. I’m totally committed to my job at the moment. I did kind of make a pact with myself that if I ever fulfilled my dream of becoming Partner, then I would settle down. I guess what I have is just hard to break out of. When I come to The Castle, I can just totally let go. I don’t think
I could ever be able to find a woman who would be willing to do the things that Belinda does for me. I think all women would run a mile from that, and I wouldn’t blame them.”

  I paused to think for a second, wondering how to answer him. “In truth, I think it would take a special someone to be willing to take control like that in a committed relationship. I can’t believe I’m saying this as I would lose you as a client by suggesting it, but I suppose some things are just more important. Have you ever looked on the Internet?”

  Jeffrey frowned, pausing momentarily. “You mean online dating?”

  I nodded. “Yes, exactly. I’m sure there is an online dating service which focuses on the more unconventional sides of relationships, shall we say? You don’t have to do it now, but it could be something you might want to look into when you think you are ready.”

  Jeffrey grabbed my shoulder and pulled me into his chest for a swift hug. “You know, I always thought you were a special lady.”

  Lightly punching him on the shoulder, I said, “Aw, shucks. Thanks, Jeffrey.”

  It was morning, so I stretched my arms out wide and yawned. I could actually hear the birds tweeting, and the sun seemed to greet me on this beautiful sunny day. But, in that brief moment between blissful, ignorant sleep and wakefulness, I remembered all that had happened yesterday. My gut twisted as I recounted the events from the moment Isabella stepped into my office. Things were never going to be the same again.

  On another note, Jeffrey had been nothing but a gentleman since my arrival. It was lovely sitting by the fire, eating, and just talking to someone. Surprising even myself, I actually had a proper, adult conversation about life—and even love. I felt more mature during those few hours with Jeffrey than I ever had. We just listened to each other, and it was nice. No judgements. No discrimination. Just being there for each other.

  The only problem I had was falling in love with Benjie. They were both leaving first thing in the morning for the journey home, and I knew I was going to miss him.

  Once I was ready, I ventured downstairs to find a suitcase at the foot of the stairs and a frantically wagging tail. “Benjie! Come here, boy.”

 
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