AN: Okay so this is the new version or New Dawn although you probably will hardly see any similarities. Sorry for all the mess this has caused and hope you like this story and don't forget to review at the end.
From a young age I never saw myself sitting here, I promised myself I would never be the cold-hearted bastard Grandpa Masen was. By the age of twenty-one those plans had completely broken through. By the age of twenty-three I had taken over Grandpa Masen's stone-cold company and turned Masen Security into Cullen Security. It was a surprise my mother turned out so sweet, the devil being her father. But my gracious mother had taken after her mother, bless her sweet-soul. Grandma Anne had gone to an early grave no doubt due to Satan.
So here I was, listening to men nearly double my age drone on about a new mall in New York City. Hah, like anyone they need yet another place to shop in New York. Although I could practically hear my sister, Alice, screeching, a sound only dogs should be able to hear, when she finds out there would be a new place to shop next time she went to New York. Which would be soon, very soon.
Being the owner and CEO of Cullen Security I normally paid people to attend meetings like this. But this one was important; this deal could seal my breakthrough outside of Chicago and I didn't need someone fucking it up. After changing ownership and name, Masen Security didn't hold as much power and value as it once did and it was my duty to put Cullen Security at the top.
"I need floor plans and individual shop plans." I stated.
A bald-headed man spoke up while pressing a few buttons on his laptop. "We have detailed floor plans and we've marked where jewellery stores will be placed for extra security but I'm afraid we don't have individual shop plans, Mr Cullen." The projector sparked up showing the floor plans with shops marked as numbers.
I snorted internally, God these people were useless. "I need individual shop plans, that way I can have a general idea about where security equipment should be placed."
The men nodded again and the bald headed man spoke again. "Of course Mr Cullen, we'll get the plans out to you as soon as possible."
"I'll also need to fly out to New York to see if the plans are viable."
A dark grey haired man, who wore a suit that matched, passed his iPad over to me so I could see the timeline of events for the mall. "As you can see we're planning finishing development for the mall by December. We're also planning the opening for February. So hopefully you will be able to fly out sometime during the end of December."
"That would be perfect; we would be out of your hair by mid January."
"Great we have a deal." Baldy said gleefully, I could see dollar signs in his eyes as he thought of the bonus he would be getting for Christmas. He reached over to his briefcase and took a neatly clipped bundle of legal formalities. "Now all you have to do is sign here and here." He said and pointed to two lines. "You can take your time to read through the papers of course." Baldy said excitedly as he slumped back into the chair.
"Actually" A smirk graced my lips as baldy sat up straight in his chair. "I would rather my lawyer look through these. You'll receive the papers by the end of the week."
Baldy and I both needed each other. I needed him to make my breakthrough and he needed me to get his hands on his paycheque and at the moment I had the upper hand.
"Of course, Mr Cullen. We understand." Baldy and his pal got up to take their leave. "It was great doing business with you." Both of them shook my hand firmly as I muttered a small "Same here."
I made my way to an empty elevator and hit the 48th floor button. The entire top floor was my personal space. Of course it was entirely too large, only holding an office for myself, a lobby and my PA's desk. I loved the finer things in life and being the second richest in Chicago, falling slightly behind Sam Zell, I got the finer things in life.
"How was the meeting?" Leah questioned catching me before I couldn't make a sneaky entrance to my office.
"Meh" she laughed at my lack of response instead of taking offence
"Alice called." She stated and laughed again when I groaned "Oh come on she's not that bad plus she offered to help around here."
"The only thing that woman's good at is shopping and party planning. She'll destroy my office!" My hands flapped about trying to emphasise my point. I did not need another renovation.
"And talk." Leah snorted. "How could you forget the talking?"
"How long were you on the phone to her?"
"An hour..." I huffed "and a bit...maybe." Leah let out slyly
"Shouldn't you be working instead of gossiping with my sister?"
"Oh Mr Cullen, you maybe be able to boss around a lot of people but you can't boss around a pregnant lady. Especially one who you would be nothing without."
"Getting a bit ahead of yourself aren't you."
"No defiantly not, I'm your, what you call it? Oh yes right hand women. I'm your right hand women. If I weren't your cousin you could probably call me your work wife." She gleamed happily as I smirked at the term she used.
"So work wife, what have you got for me today?"
Leah went straight into work mode and joking went out of the window. "Jenks called asking about today's paperwork."
I handed Leah the paperwork "Make another copy and post one over to Jenks."
Leah nodded before continuing "I've left the post in your office and you have a few unimportant emails. But remember your meeting with the board of directors and 3pm sharp." I would just have to show them the copy of the agreement for the mall and make sure they agreed. Should be easy.
"LEAH!" a voice screeched. Oh sweet lord! Not today!
"Hey Allie!" Leah screeched in the same tone.
I turned around to greet my sister but instead she flew past me and took Leah in a deathly looking hug mumbling something about being so excited but she spoke so fast it was hard for me to understand.
"What's got you so excited?"
"Hello to you to dear brother." I rolled my eyes at her choice of words. What? She ignored me first. "And to answer your question, if you hadn't been so busy with your work you would have seen Leah sporting around this."
Alice lifted Leah's left hand to show me the gleaming diamond on her fourth finger.
"Wow I guess my congratulations are in order." I gave her a hug and she mumbled a thank you against my chest. "So he knocks you up twice before popping the question. That man doesn't run in order at all." I joked.
Alice gave me a dirty look, one she had inherited from my mother which made me want to crawl away. "God you men are so insensitive."
I decided it was best to change the conversation. "So what are you doing here?"
"Party time!" Or maybe not.
"Well me and Jake only want a small wedding before the baby comes, so I'll probably be as fat as a whale then and wouldn't enjoy it much if we had a reception so we're planning on having a big engagement party." Leah explained. I nodded and made my way to my office.
"Edward wait!" Alice called out to me.
"Well we're kind of holding the party next week."
"So we kind of need a venue quick." Uhoh where is she going with this.
"So we're kind of using your house?" Her last statement came out as a question.
"No you're not." Hell no! She must be crazy. My house will not ruined by random people.
"Oh come on Ed, we won't be able to find a suitable venue for next week." Alice whined, yes a twenty-five year old grown woman just whined at me like a child. She even stomped her foot.
"Delay the party or use mum and dad's house."
"Their house is used all the time for parties, we need a new scene and your house is perfect. I mean you're only there on weekends so one weekend at the condo won't hurt right? Plus if we clear the living room and dining room and use the hall way it would look like a ball room."
"Oh come on please." I couldn't resist the puppy dog eyes my sister gave me. It looked ridiculous considering she was in her mid 20s but she was as small as a pixie.
"I want everything cleaned"
"I want everything put in exactly the same position.
"I want everything back in one piece."
"Okay." Alice jumped up and down on the spot and then squeezed me in a hug before jumping up and down again.
"Thank you so much Ed, you won't regret this." Leah chirped.
Alice ran over to where Leah sat and they stared talking 'colours' while jumping up and down. I stared at the both of them and tried hard to figure out how I got roped into this and scolded myself for saying yes. Although I didn't actually say 'yes', but there was no going back, definitely not with my sister involved. Oh I'm so going to regret this!
I made my way to my office and slumped in the chair and banged my head on the table. I was now sacrificing my sterile house for a party. I groaned for the umpteenth time today and continued to bang my head on the table.
After an exhausting day and the fact that next week-end my house would be ruined, the last thing I needed was another knock on my door.
"What?" I growled.
"Cheer up you grouch." Leah chirped as she sat on the black coach against the wall with the feet propped up on the coffee table making me wince but I decided not to argue with the pregnant lady.
"Are you here to tell me that you've magically found a venue where you engagement party has to be so you can leave my house alone?"
"Er no." She answered like it was the stupidest question in the world.
"Then I won't cheer up."
"Oh come on, I promise it will be as good as new."
"It better!" I muttered.
"Okay I'm not going to argue with you. The party is at your house deal with it!" Leah huffed out.
Arguing had proven useless and pregnant lady was scary. "What did you need to talk about?"
Leah sat up straight and started picking at her nails, a nervous habit of hers. "What's wrong?"
"Nothing's wrong as such it's just...You know how my materiality leave starts in two months?" I nodded not knowing where she was going with the conversation. "Erm...the thing is I need time off from now and I won't be coming back." She let out in a rush before I could interrupt.
"What do you mean?"
"About what?" She asked letting out a nervous laugh.
"The whole thing?"
"Well the thing is Jamie is nearly one now and he's too much for Jake to handle at the garage. You know he keeps touching things which might hurt him and he's walking now too. Of course we have enough money to pay for a minder or something but...you see Edward I came back to work one month after he was born when in reality I should have only started working a couple of months ago. I haven't spent much time with Jamie, he's always with Jake. I want to spend a little time with my boy before this one comes along." Leah said lovingly as she caressed her stomach. "And after the baby's born I've decided to carry on being a stay at home mum."
The room was quite as I digested the fact that was PA was now quitting on me. The day was just getting worse.
I should have never got out of bed