CHAPTER TWO: ADEN.
When I arrived at the airport, I felt the rush of cold air against my skin. The air was chilly and I shivered as I smelt a whiff of fresh mint. It was unfamiliar to me. All my life I've never been to London, this is the first. I looked around at the people, different races and British accents all around me. It would be no time till I picked it up. "Bollocks!" I heard a woman say "What time would you want me to be there then?" she continued asking through the phone. I noticed the way she spoke and I kept myself from smiling at her as I remembered those times mom and I always like to play around with it since I was young. I went on to the conveyer belt to collect my suitcase and gave dad a call.
"Hello?" he answered, sounding rushed.
"Hi dad, I've reached London, are you here yet?" I asked feeling quite enthusiastic about this
"Uhhh…" I heard some ruffling of papers and pens, "Soon."
"Right…" I replied disappointedly, he sure had the guts to lie right in front of me.
"I'll give you a call when I reach. I'm currently at place quite near where you are, I'll be there in a jiffy after I cover things up here." He gave a snappy reply before he cut the call. I looked at my phone and sighed. I guess this is going to take awhile.
I decided to sit somewhere nice and relaxing to wait, spotting Starbucks from a distance; I hurried there and found myself a nice table with two arm chairs. I set my luggage down and got myself a warm latte; considering how cold it was. I remember how mom used to make lattes for the two of us during the winter where she was usually at her weakest but, nothing could compare to that. I sat down on my spot and got my book out to read. The place was gradually getting noisier and crowded so I took out my Ipod. I was about to put on my headphones when a tap on my shoulder startled me. I figured it was dad since I messaged him where I was, I turned around and got taken aback. It was a boy, he looked like he was about my age. He opened his mouth to speak, "is that seat taken?" he pointed a finger at the chair across mine, "yeah, no, sure! Sit! Go ahead!" I replied, flustered.
"Thank you." He smiled and I blushed. Looked around for any other empty seats; drats, none. I looked down and continued reading my book, glancing up now and then at the boy across me. He has his laptop with him and huge headphones hung on his neck. His floppy hair was dark and curly which fell perfectly against his neck and a little over his eyebrows, his eyes were dark green and it held a mysterious feel which made him so much more intriguing than he already was. I tried to get back to my book but it wasn't easy getting distracted by my brain telling me to look up at him.
"Yes?" he asked when he caught me staring, "No, uhm… sorry…" I looked away.
"It's okay, you're not from here, are you?" he raised a brow, looking at me quizzically. His voice sending shivers down my spine.
"N-no… I'm from New York…" I replied; heart rate rising.
"Oh! What brings you here?" he asked, his head cocked a little to the side and his lips twitching upwards a little.
"Well , my father's here… my mum just passed away so, yeah" I replied, remembering the day she died a week ago. I bit my lip. "I'm so sorry… I should not have brought that up." He smiled pathetically and slowly closed his laptop screen. Seeing he did that, I did the same for my book.
"Well, on to a brighter topic, my name is Aden Millward." He offered his hand for a shake, "Kayleen Lawson." I took it and smiled. He smiled back and I felt heat rushing to my face, I snatched back my hand and managed a small 'sorry' after that. He chuckled and made me laugh as well.
"So I'm guessing your father is going to pick you up?" he asked, clasping his hands together—his strong toned hands.
"Yeah, he should be on the way…" I replied, he sure was taking quite awhile, I checked my watch. Fifteen minutes had passed since I called.
"I'm sure he'll be here soon." He smiled once more, making me flustered again. "So, since you've just met your father, have you learnt his name? Likes? Dislikes?"
"I guess, not much though, but his name is Richard Savoie. " I told him.
"Savoie…?" He repeated as I saw the color in his face drain; with a stunned expression.
"Yes, what's wrong?" I asked, concerned.
"No n-no, nothing's wrong…" he stuttered, "Savoie is… a nice surname." He smiled briefly before the color in his face returned and he flipped his laptop screen back on. I gulped and blinked. Just what had happened? Well, I guess he didn't want to talk anymore… I flipped my book back open and continued reading, but a part of me stayed curious as to what had occurred.
Awhile later, dad appeared calling from behind, "KAYLEEN!" he shouted, I bolted upright as people stared around, "Hurry up!" I stood up embarrassed and grabbed my luggage as I glanced at Aden and caught him stifling his laughter. I pouted at him and he smirked at me, "need some help with that?" he asked, "it's okay… I can manage, bye." I smiled, glancing once more at his face, smiling wryly. "See you around then..." And I went off.
Wait, what did he mean by that? I shrugged that thought off as I trudged along to where dad was. "Hurry!" he shouted, does he not realize the billions of people staring at him? Seriously, what's his problem. I sighed, swearing under my breath and rolling my eyes as I finally made it to him.
"Couldn't you be a little more patient?!" I exclaimed, looking around consciously at the disapproving stares around us.
"I would if I didn't have to rush for a board meeting at five, it's five hours from now!" he grumbled, glancing at the wall clock and back at me. I rolled my eyes at him, "It's five hours from now, you have ample time!" lowering my voice a little.
"It takes about five hours from here to Lexter, why else would you think I would rush you? Anyway, what took you so long?" he demanded.
"There was this guy at the table where I was, look! He's over th—" I stopped, noticing he was gone, my eyes searched the area for any signs of him nearby but, none.
I shrugged it off and sighed inwardly as dad complained again, "There's no one there! We have to hurry, no time for chit chat." He grabbed my luggage and dragged it along with him. I followed closely behind him as the events of today replayed in my mind. Exactly why was Aden so conscious about the surname 'Savoie'? And why did he leave right after I left? I shook my head to clear my thoughts. It isn't really my business, I only just known him for a few minutes. It could've been some urgent business he had to attend to but why—no, never mind. I doubt I'll ever meet him in the future anyway. I heaved a sigh as his last words replayed in my mind, "See you around then…"
It was a long ride to the town of Lexter, I rested my head on the window sill, looking outside at the long stretch of green before us, they were hurting my eyes; ironically. There were buildings and houses before they slowly dispersed into trees and whatnot. "Are we reaching soon?" I asked, "Soon, I'm rushing too." He stepped on the accelerator as there were no cars around. I felt a little uneasy but at least I could finally get this boring sight out of the way when we finally see some houses. The roads were wide and capacious, it was quite daunting but it is broad daylight, what could happen? I close my eyes, tapping my fingers to the song playing on the radio by the band Queen. It sure was nice listening to them after such a long time. I slowly dozed off as sleep took over me.
I woke up to a tap on my shoulder hearing a voice repeating my name, "Kayleen, Kayleen wake up" I rubbed my eyes as I slowly sat upright noticing our surrounding changed. "We're in town now, just thought you should familiarize yourself with the area." Dad said, I yawned and stretched, looking out the window, "Not much people live here, it's an average of two hundred and fifty thousand people, isn't as much as New York." He told me, well, at least now it's a calming environment. Back in New York, everywhere you go would be bustling with people. Looking outside, the roads weren't crowded with cars neither were the pavements, people smiled and waved as dad's car went by and he smiled back. "They know it's you?" I asked, confused as I raised my hand to wave back.
"Well our house is right at the core of this whole town and I did tell you, didn't I? I'm the richest in town." He bragged and I sighed mentally then he checked his watch, "I'm running out of time, I better speed up." He muttered before stepping on the gas.
We drove a long way until we finally drove into some forest-like area, enclosed with trees. The eerie feel of the area was just overwhelming; a shiver went down my spine as I looked around. There were practically no cars around, no people; maybe a few birds but that didn't change how unsettling the area was, "is this supposed to be some haunted road?" I asked, feeling my voice quiver a little.
"No, why do you say that?" he asked, chuckling a little then checking his watch again.
"Just… it's spooky" I confessed and he laughed, why did he laugh? That made me feel worse, like it was just me.
"Oh come on, didn't I say our house was at the core of Lexter?" he said, chuckling, "It's old."
Well I guess that explains it. "So it hasn't been renovated or anything? Even this road?" I asked, curiosity gaining the better of me.
"Yes, maybe the house has been from previous generations but no, I guess not."
That's the reason for the spooky feels, I sighed a sigh of relief though the place still bugged me.
We drove until the end of the road where a house came into view. Rather than a house I would say it was more like a castle surrounded by trees. "Is that… is that the house?" I asked, dumbfounded.
"Yes it is rather huge" he replied parking the car at the side.
Indeed the house was huge, humongous in fact. We got out of the car and I stood by the car awed by the sight of the house.
"Wait here." Dad said as he went back to get my luggage. I stared in awe at the intricate designs on the wall then I noticed; it was stone. My mouth jarred open, it's not everywhere you find a house made of freaking stone! I wish mom was alive to see this. Dad came back with my luggage and told me he had to rush off.
"Wait, what do I say?" I asked hastily, "That you're my daughter." He replied before driving off. I sighed inwardly, advancing towards the front porch.
I fiddled with my sweaty palms; my grandmother is probably in there, what should I do? Looking up at the house, it really was like a castle with three floors, I felt myself drawn to it the minute I stepped here. I observed the design of angel's wings on the door and wall. This is the birthmark Dad was talking about! Mum told me once that my birthmark had a unique shape maybe… maybe it really is of angel's wings. I shook my head, clearing my thoughts as I remembered Aden, feeling my cheeks burning I smacked them and proceeded to stretch out my hand hesitatingly at the gold plated door knock.
I knocked once, nobody.
Thrice, the door flung open. They do say third time's a charm. I jumped back in surprise and a young woman greeted me. "Hello! Sorry it took so long, you are?" the young woman asked, smiling at me, she had blonde hair that she tied in a bun, she was wearing a maid's uniform and was holding on to a piece of cloth, I probably disrupted her cleaning.
"Umm, sorry… Kayleen Lawson, Richard Savoie's daughter?" I apologized and she smiled brighter, straightening herself. "Ah! Young Mistress! How awfully rude of me! Come in come in!" she said and took my luggage; pushing me into the house before I could correct her to not call me 'Young Mistress'.
Stepping into the house, I felt a sense of familiarity. Which was strange since it's the first time I've been here. I looked around and found the same design of angel's wings on the carpet and walls. That's weird. I shook it off and turned to the young woman setting my luggage at the side, "So, it's only you here?" I asked seeing that no one came out to see who had come.
"Oh no it isn't just me. I'm only the maid in charge of the first and second floors, Leslie is my name. There is another maid for the third floor but she is more like Madam Lenore's personal maid. There's also the cook, James, he always makes some splendid food though he does have quite a temper. There are more of us. None of them really mind you coming in. They're all just minding their own business!" she laughed.
"Is madam Lenore my grandmother?" I asked after hearing the name.
"Yes! Nice woman I would say, though a little senile at times, she is at the third floor and it is forbidden for any of us to go up there unless it's Miranda, the other maid, James or Mister Richard." I wondered why the windows were so dusty if there was another maid on the third floor but what was even more unusual was the fact that I can't even greet my own grandmother even after I came all the way here.
I yawned and noticed the fireplace sitting across the staircase and a sofa and two arm chairs surrounded it with a glass table in the middle. The carpet was red with gold linings and the designs in white in the middle. The walls were a little peeling and the designs on the wall were a little worn off. The staircase had gold plated railings and it spiraled all the way up. The house looked a hell lot like those houses in the Victorian period, I've seen a few on T.V. but this is really a first time—"Would you like anything?" Leslie asked, breaking my thoughts.
"Ah, no it's okay" I smiled, yawning shortly after that. I was really tired after all that happened today, meeting Aden, the long car ride; even the short nap in the car didn't help.
"Perhaps you would like to go up to your room?" she asked, noticing how tired I was. I smiled at her, droopy eyed.
"That'll do, thanks." I yawn again while she showed me to my room.
My room was located at the most right of the second floor with my name encarved on it. Leslie opened the door for me and I stepped into the yellow room, it smelled like roses and the angel's wing carving was on the door from the inside. There was a desk and a wardrobe, a lovely bed was settled by the wall and the bed sheets were a simple sky blue and what was the most stunning thing about the room was a huge window leading to the balcony where I had the view of the front of the house where the greenery was a haven where the trees enclosed the area. Anyone would dream to have a room like this—I am loving it.
I thanked Leslie and sat down on my bed, closed my eyes and just laid down. I dozed off slowly with a smile on my face as a mysterious and majestic voice echoed in my head, "Sleep well, Kayleen."
That was chapter two :) Hope you enjoyed!
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