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[Story] The CEO and Me – Episode 9

It’s so hard to let someone in. I haven’t even known Brian for a week and I’m already “engaged” to him. You can’t develop feelings for someone in that amount of time.

I look up and notice I have no idea where I am. I walk over to a table with a few photos on it. I gently pick one up and look at it. A man and woman that resemble Brian is in the picture. A younger Brian and a Brian look alike is between to two staring at a baby in the woman’s arms.

I study the picture for a moment and pick up another. Brian and the Brian look alike are smiling at the camera with a little girl sitting in the floor crying.

“I see you met Ben and Carly.”

The frame drops from my hand and scatters across the floor in several shards.

“Oh my gosh. Brian I’m so sorry,” I say as I get down on my knees and begin to pick up the pieces.

“Elena, don’t pick up shards of glass with your hands,” Brian says walking over to a nearby closet and pulling out a dust pan. He walks back over to me and begins to clean up my mess.

“Brian, I’m so sorry. I shouldn’t even be in here let alone looking at your things,” I state bending down to pick up the picture. I brush away the shards of glass with my hand. I wince quickly and jerk my hand back.

“What did you do?” Brian asks dropping the dust pan into the floor. He gently pick up my hand and examines the cut.

“It isn’t bad. A bandaid will do the trick. Hold this over the cut while I finish cleaning this up,” Brian says while giving me a cloth.

I wrap it around my hand and sit down at a chair nearby. He probably thinks I am crazy. I have been watching over Kade but yet I can’t even pick up a couple of glass shards out of the floor without cutting myself.

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Oh no. Where is Kade.

“Okay. All done now let’s look,” Brian begins but I’m already moving toward the door to look for my brother.

I feel a hand on my arm stopping me from continuing.

“Where are you going?” Brian asks.

“I have to find Kade.”

“Elena, he is still in the game room. I have someone watching him. He’s fine.”

I slowly begin to calm down. How have I been doing this by myself this long. Sure Mrs. Smith is a huge help but I can’t help but think that I am all alone.

“Brian, I really need to be by myself right now. I’m sorry.”

“You aren’t going to ask me any questions?” Brian asks.

“What do you mean?” I ask turning around.

“The pictures.”

“It isn’t my place to ask.”

Brian motions for me to follow him. He sits down on the couch and I follow suit. He picks up the first picture I had and points to the man and woman.

“That is my parents. This was the first picture ever taken after the birth of my sister,” Brian says smiling at the picture.

“Who is the boy?” I ask pointing at the Brian look alike.

Brian’s face quickly turns into a grieving one.

“That’s Ben. He was my twin.”

I look at him not not sure what to say.

“He was suppose to take over the company. However, when he was 14 he began acting different. He loved playing football. He couldn’t even play anymore. My father took him to the doctor and he was diagnosed with stage four leukemia.”

I continue staring at him not expecting anything that he was saying.

“He lived with it for about a year and a half. He passed away a week before our 16th birthday.”

Brian didn’t shed a tear. His face was blank as he stared at the floor.

“Why are you telling me this?” I ask.

“We aren’t that different, Elena. We both have endured loss. Does it look like I have anyone in this house? Yeah, my parents are still here but my father doesn’t have much longer. He and my mother decided to travel the world before his final days. Then they give me the company. I’m not the one who was supposed to have this. Ben was. Ben was the businessman. Even at 14 he was at the company working with our father. Carly is four years younger than us. She wanted to study abroad. At sixteen she is currently in Paris studying fashion.”

He hasn’t moved his gaze while talking.

“Brian, I had no idea.”

“You couldn’t had known. The reporters are not allowed to write about Ben. To them it’s as if he never existed. In their minds it’s only my parents, Carly, and me. No one else. We are the ‘perfect family.’”

I wrap my arms around Brian and just hug him. After a few seconds he returns the hug.

“Thank you for telling me.”

“Thank you for listening,” Brian whispers back to me.

I slowly retracted from the hug and stood up.

“I need to go check on Kade. Brian,” he looked up at me, “you can talk to me whenever you need to.”

I turned around and stopped at the sound of my name.

“Thank you Lena.”

Tears began to roll down my cheeks. Brian and I aren’t that different. However, he has money and I don’t. We both have lost. Maybe we can learn to heal together.

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To be continued…

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