I honestly didn't think I was going to be back so soon but here I am! If you haven't read part one, Buried Revelations, you should because this is a direct sequel and you might be a bit confused. I admit that the first one is not my best but I am hoping that this story makes up for it. I've been working furiously on this with lots of ideas flowing. I'm happy with it. Anyway, the story begins just a few weeks after the ending of Buried Revelations and will continue from there. This is just something to start off with and is very short but important to the whole story. I hope to get the first chapter in by next week as well. It's written, as is the second chapter, but I need to get it onto a computer and edit (free write by hand, computer, edit, publish is the flow here). It all depends on my kids, especially my older one since she's off school on Monday. Enjoy and don't forget to leave a review, good or bad. Oh, and if you're in the path of the snow that's coming this weekend, stay safe. Tootles!
"Sir, are you sure this is what you want to do?" Brenda Carlton asked cautiously. She was sitting in a plush chair across from couch where a man in his early forties sat in a crisp suit. A roaring fire warmed the room in the ornate fireplace between them.
"As I told you before, Ms. Carlton," Mr. Preston replied after a sigh. He took a sip of the glass of brandy in his hand before continuing. "This is what I envision and I know what I want. Also no one knows that I am back and I intend to keep it that way until the moment is right. With the exception of you, of course."
"Are you sure we shouldn't bring Mr. Nickerson in on your real identity, though? Brenda asked. "He's putting a lot of effort into the framework and he even got Nancy to sign the papers. Shouldn't he at least understand who he's working for and why?"
"I understand what you are saying, Ms. Carlton." Preston leaned back in the couch and put his feet up on the coffee table in front of him. "He will know in good time. If I wouldn't know any better, though, it sounds as if you actually like the man."
"Um, no," Brenda replied, rolling he eyes. "He's a pig in my book, chasing after women for sport. He's still doing it, you know."
"I know but it keeps him away from her for now."
"But she's still in Arizona. He's been lying low like you told him to do until everything is cleared up with the courts." Brenda made a noise. "I just wish he wouldn't bring just ANY woman into his room."
"Let him be, Ms. Carlton," he ordered. "I will allow it until everything is in place. The only reason why I needed him was because he was involved with her. Who knew he would be so easily corrupted? Too bad he's not so bright. He shouldn't have gotten himself into trouble that we have to fix to make sure our plans go on without a hitch. Only now I think his motivation is to get back at her for humiliating him, which isn't that the same reason why you're here?"
"You know why I'm here, sir."
"Oh, stop calling me that." Preston waved his hand in annoyance. "You make me sound like I'm your boss or something."
"You are my boss."
"Whatever, don't call me sir. I hate that." He put his feet down and leaned toward her. "Did you get the information I wanted from New York?"
"Yes," Brenda nodded looking down at the file in her lap. She handed it to him and watched as he flipped through it. "As you can see, there may be an opportunity arising within the next year or so. The time is right to get started."
"Wonderful," Preston flopped the folder on his desk. "Get someone in there but don't have them do anything until I tell them to. By the time they figure out something is going wrong, it will be too late. When this is all over, they will finally know who they are dealing with. I underestimated them years ago but I don't intend to let it happen again. Is everything ready here in Chicago?"
"Yes….Mr. Preston," Brenda hesitated. "It will be a matter of days before everything here is in place. I hope, though, that you know who you are dealing with this time. The Drews are very resourceful and unpredictable when you least expect it."
"I know that!" he snapped causing Brenda to flinch. "It gets on my nerves every time someone tells me something that I already know. I assure you that they are not going to be able to do it again!"
"Yes, sir," mumbled Brenda, lowering her head.
"I'm sorry, my dear," Preston said calmly after seeing her demeanor change. Rising from his chair, he walked over to her. Preston helped her up and tenderly kissed her on the forehead. "I shouldn't have snapped at you like that. You know how they make me feel."
"They do the same to me," she smiled sheepishly.
"Well, we just have to make sure that they don't figure everything out before we want them to." Their conversation soon turned into pleasantries, speaking to each other as if they were old friends.
As Brenda listened to Mr. Preston, she thought about how she got to where she was. Her sheer and utter hatred for Nancy was only masked by his hatred of her and the Hardys. Just as Ned and Preston were, Brenda too was humiliated by Nancy. Nancy defended the innocence of a man who Brenda fully believed was guilty. She wrote stories with evidence to convict the man in the public eye but Nancy eventually cleared his name. Brenda's father was furious when he had to write retractions for each one of Brenda's articles about the man and screamed at his daughter for hours before demoting her to a lowly columnist. Though she was furious, Brenda never officially left her father's newspaper, choosing to work from home instead. She still kept up the charade by sending her father her columns but she hadn't set foot inside her father's newspaper since. That was a few months before Preston reached out to her for help from prison and her life was forever changed. And now, a year later, the lives of the three who put him there would be changed as well.