“Hey! Sam! We are done for the day. Are you coming with us?” one of his colleagues called out. Sam scratched his dark curly hair and grinned while shaking his head in disagreement. His colleagues wished him the best and left the Savings and Loans building. Sam loosened his tie and packed his belongings before heading out. It was a cool windy night in Paris, but Sam loved every minute of it. He worked as an accountant at the Savings and Loans Bank and hadn’t gotten the raise he wanted or deserved according to himself. Sam Davis had travelled to Paris immediately after his graduation at England where his family resides. He had wanted to live an independent life where he could survive on his own without any family’s help. Sam Davis came from a high class family with a huge wealthy background and he’d disliked their aristocratic culture. That’s one of the reasons why he left as soon as he’d finished university. On his way home, he passed by a curly dark-haired girl with sad innocent blue eyes. Sam paused and gave her a dollar to the poor child who took it with gratitude. She immediately rushed to the dark alley behind her. Sam grinned and left while whistling a happy tune.
Once he had reached his flat, the telephone rang. Sam picked it up. “Hello?”
“Hello sweetheart, how have you been?” Sam sighed deeply.
“Mom, I told you I will be the one to call you.”
“I know, but your father and I’ve missed you so much.” “Yeah, right.”
“Don’t be rude, Sam. We raised you better than that.” “Yes, Mom. So how is Brigitte?”
“Your sister is fine and is preparing for marriage.”
“Don’t you think…she should choose her own husband herself instead of you and dad?”
“Sam, don’t start on this issue. The heir to the Davis business should never talk this way!”
“Listen, Mom. I have to go now. I’m really exhausted from work.”
“The son of the Davis family should never stooped low in a poor profession of being an accountant. You know your father would’ve made you manager of the Davis properties.”
“Yes, mom. I know, but I’m not ready to be taking up the family business yet. I will talk to you later. Okay?”
“Alright…rest well. Good-bye.” “Bye.”
He put down the receiver and crumbled his hand into a fist. He wished his status wasn’t ascribed at birth. The pressure was just too much.
The next morning, he passed the same path he took yesterday. On his way to work, he had hoped to spot the poor child, but she was nowhere in sight so he headed to his workplace with a great disappointment. As usual, Sam worked throughout the day and as always he was the last one to leave the building. He came to the familiar path and noticed the child he’d spotted yesterday, but this time, she was grinning at him. He stopped beside her and smiled. “Thanks for what you did yesterday.” a feminine voice spoke from the dark alley. Sam raised his head and squinted his eyes to see if he could spot the owner of the voice. A pretty redhead came out, wearing tattered dirty clothes and she blushed under his gaze. “That’s my sister.” the redhead spoke after pause as she pointed to the grinning child. Sam smiled at her. “She’s dumb, so she cannot speak.” she added.
Sam nodded and introduced himself. “I am Sam Davis.”
“Beatrice Dawson, my sister is Nicky.”
“Nice to meet you. Mind if I ask why two pretty girls are doing on the streets?”
“Parents died. Got thrown out of the house because of rent. Lost my job at a cafe after a rape attempt. Nothing else, but begging on the street in order to survive.”
Sam nodded quietly, feeling sympathy for the unfortunate siblings. Beatrice looked like in her late twenties, close to his age, after all he was in his middle twenties.
Both girls had different hair color, but their blue eyes showed their resemblance.
Beatrice felt uncomfortable about the silence and tucked a long strand of auburn hair behind her ear. Her long curly hair was a disaster although her sister’s dark curly hair was also a horror, but it looked better compared to hers. “Well, I just want to say thanks.” Beatrice stated as she pushed her sister towards the dark alley. “Wait!” he exclaimed and held her arm. She stared at it until he finally pulled away. He blushed. “Listen, I am really sorry about your loss, but how about I treat you to dinner?” he offered and Beatrice felt uncomfortable. Nicky kept on pulling her sister’s hand so she will agree to his offer. Then it dawned on Sam about Beatrice’s problems. Beatrice and Nicky’s appearance were horrifying and they just couldn’t suffer humiliation and disgrace at the restaurant. “Never mind. You stay here and I will get the food.” he told her and quickly left. Beatrice smiled, but Nicky frowned in anger. Beatrice assured he was going to bring the food for them and Nicky grinned.
Some minutes later, all three people were happily munching their hamburgers and French fries. Beatrice and Nicky savored the taste. They hadn’t eaten anything good for a longtime. That night, Sam became friends with Beatrice and Nicky.
A few weeks passed, Sam began to actually love going to work and his colleagues wondered at this sudden change of behavior. And now he is the first to leave the building. They all assumed he was dating somebody. Sam was excited about meeting his new friends and he took them out to the parks, museums and so many places, buying those gifts such as clothes, food and toys for Nicky. Beatrice felt embarrassed taking these gifts, but Sam insisted anytime she tried to decline his gifts. He tried to get them to live in a hotel or apartment, but Beatrice declined, explaining he had done enough for them.
One night, while they were sharing ice-cream together, Nicky went to the restrooms leaving Sam and Beatrice. “Umm…Beatrice?” he called her and she turned to him with her smile. Sam almost melted at the sight of her. Beatrice looked gorgeous with the new clothes he had bought for her and a comb to brush that mane of auburn hair of hers.
“Would…you like…to…um…go out with me?” “Yes.”
“Of course…I really…like you.”
As she confessed, she blushed and Sam felt great joy. “But who will watch Nicky?”
“Don’t worry, there is an old lady who is a neighbor at the flat. She will look after her. You can trust her. She has taken care of her own grand children while they were still kids.”
Beatrice nodded and ate her ice-cream in silence. Sam grinned at her, but turned away as Nicky returned to them. Nicky glanced at both of them and smiled as if she knew what they had discussed in her absence.
On a Saturday afternoon, Beatrice and Sam went out to the carnival and they had a lot of fun. They continued to go out on dates during the past weeks. They were falling in love with each other and they acknowledged it, but had no notion that they will be separated soon.
One night, Sam decided to introduce his girlfriend to his colleagues. Beatrice was nervous, but he assured her that everything will be fine. Beatrice met all his friends and was shy, but they coaxed her to relax. They were happy that she was dating Sam and she was delighted. Later, she excused herself to the restroom and after a few minutes, she made her way back, but stopped when she heard some comments from Sam’s colleagues.
“Isn’t she the beggar near the dark alley who allows her sister to beg?” Sam scowled at his colleague who spoke.
“She’s not a beggar. Careful with that mouth of yours!”
“Hey. Calm down. I mean I understand if she’s after your money.” “Shut up! Don’t speak that way about my girlfriend!”
“Oh! C’mon. All street girls do it every time. I won’t be surprised if she rubs you dry, leaving you penniless. Besides, she’s not on your level. A well-paid accountant dating a lowlife from the street is a disgrace.”
Soon, there were cries of pain as Sam lunged at his insulting colleague. The other colleagues had to hold him back. Sam gave him three hard punches. Once he scowled at his bleeding colleague, he raised his head to meet a teary Beatrice who fled out of the cafe. He run after her.
He caught her arm, but she shook it off.
“Leave me alone.”
“Don’t listen to him. He’s a jerk.”
“I am sure that’s what other people think of me. A gold digger.” “That’s not true.”
Sam put his arms around her, but she pulled from his embrace. “Thanks for everything, but I want this to…stop. We are over.”
Beatrice then run away with tears in her eyes. He allowed her to leave, feeling rejected and heartbroken. Sam went straight to the flat, mourning for the best thing that had ever happened in his entire life.
The following day, Sam felt like a zombie as he dragged himself into showering and dressing up for work. On his way, he took the path that led to the alley, but Beatrice nor Nicky were present there. Sam went to work with a broken heart. He’d even bought her a phone, but when he tried to call, the phone was switched off. So typical of Beatrice.
When he arrived at his workplace, he ignored the whispers and stares that he received from his colleagues. He sighed as he went to his cubicle. They had probably heard what had happened yesterday at the cafe. News travelled fast these days. He then received a call from his boss and his boss ordered him to come into his office. After the call, Sam rose up and sighed. He guessed that his spiteful colleague had reported the incident to the boss. This could cause him his job, but Sam didn’t care. His job was nothing compared to Beatrice. He arrived at his boss’ office and opened the door when his boss gave him the gesture to enter.
“You wanted to see me, sir?”
“Yes, Mr. Davis. I wonder if I should address as that.” “Sorry? I don’t understand what you mean.”
“Alright…if you say so…William Alexander Samuel Davis of the prestigious Davis Family. Am I correct?”
Sam gaped and glared at him. “How did you know?”
His boss gestured to the newspaper. Sam scowled at him and grabbed the newspaper. It read;
Heir to the Davis Empire in Hiding
His full name was recorded below and it also stated his address and occupation. Sam raised his head. “So I’m fired?” he questioned. His boss shook his head.
“No, I don’t mind at all. I just wished you had told me earlier, but I understand the pressures of having to take over the family business. You can continue to work here, but I believe your other colleagues might react differently towards you now.”
Sam left the office filled with grief. His boss had given him a few weeks to take on leave, since he couldn’t face the challenge of facing his colleagues and the press.
As he exited from the building, all the staff and their clients stared at him. The ladies were especially exchanging whispers and giggles as they glanced flirtingly at Sam. Sam blushed and bowed his head in embarrassment. Outside, he met a huge crowd of reporters who would’ve overwhelmed him. Sam sprinted, but the press followed him. He managed to make it to his flat and locked doors and windows. He took a deep breath and sighed. This was going to be torture. He wondered who might have discovered his identity. He called his younger sister, Brigitte.
“Hi, little sis.”
“Hey, big brother. What’s going on?”
“Oh, nothing much. Just that somebody discovered my real identity and I’m being chased by the press.”
“Oh boy! This is very bad! Why don’t you come home for a while?” “Actually I can’t…not now.”
Thoughts of Beatrice flooded his head and he wondered how she felt about discovering his true identity. Beatrice might hate herself the more after being called a gold digger. He couldn’t leave her, not even for his family, knowing that he still loves her.
“I can’t…leave the woman I love.”
“Oh, wow! I never knew. Give me the details.”
“Not right now, Brit. Not a good time, besides she broke up with me.” “What?! Why?! Was it after she found out who you are?”
“No. Let me tell the story.”
Sam explained the situation to his sister and she felt pity for Beatrice.
“I envy you. Mom and Dad wants me to marry some rich snob from Italy to unite our families.”
“You don’t have to do everything they tell you.”
“I know and that’s why Mom and Dad aren’t talking to me.” “What happened?!”
“I refused to go ahead with the arranged marriage…because I was already in love with Edward Walter.”
“You mean the butler?! I am so happy for you! Does he love you back?”
“Yup! He has even confronted Dad and explained about his feelings for me. And he said he didn’t care about our social status so he will go ahead and marry me.”
“Wow! That takes a lot of guts. How long were you dating?” “Since last year, but it was secret. He’s so…dreamy.”
“I am really happy for you, sis. At least, one of us gets their happiness.” “I’m sorry. So what are you going to do?”
“I won’t go to England, because of Mom and Dad. I will travel to Spain for a while…at least until everything calms down.”
“Alright! I will miss you, though. Take care of yourself.” “Okay, Bye.”
“Bye. And I won’t tell mom and dad.” “Thanks again.”
Then Sam went to make arrangements for his travel to Spain. He was going to miss Beatrice and Nicky. He’d planned to search for them before leaving. He wanted them to come with him to Spain so they could be together.
3 days of searching went to waste and so Sam left Paris with a broken heart. He’d informed his boss about his plans and fortunately his boss understood. And since his boss had connections to banks in Spain, he’d contacted his business partner that he was transferring one of his employees to work at his bank. Sam was delighted that he won’t be jobless. His boss assured him to take his time until everything dies out. Sam nodded, thanked him and left.
A month later, Sam was still grieving for Beatrice and Nicky. In his new office, he stared at the diamond ring in his palm. Sam had bought it weeks ago once he’d arrived in Spain. He had intentions to propose to her, but she was gone now. Spain was a wonderful place to him, although he is English, he’d learnt Spanish back in his college days. Some ladies had attempted to approach, but he always turned them. He yearned for only Beatrice. Nobody knew his true identity and he was relieved.
On a Thursday night, he was surprised to see Nicky standing there and chatting with a group of friends. Nicky looked very healthy and clean; her dark curly hair was in braids and she wore a knee-length green dress. “Nicky!” he exclaimed and Nicky turned her head to meet Sam. She squealed with delight and rushed into his arms. Sam held her in a tight embrace. Nicky’s friends grinned and murmured their good-byes. “Where is Beatrice?” he questioned, frantically looking around. Nicky laughed and gestured Sam to follow her. They passed by a lot of bus junctions and finally arrived at a flat. He followed herself inside and they used the elevator to go to floor 3. Nicky led him to a door number 14. Nicky knocked on the door. After some minutes, the door opened and Sam met a beautiful Beatrice with her red curly hair in a ponytail, wearing shorts and T-shirt. Beatrice was amazed to meet Sam.
“Hello, Beatrice. It’s been a longtime.” “But how?”
“Nicky made this miracle.”
With that, he pulled her into his arms and kissed her. Beatrice broke the kiss after some time and tears sprang in her eyes. “I love you.” he whispered.
She hugged him this time and spoke in his ear. “I love you too.”
But then she caught herself and pushed him away. “We need to talk, Beatrice.” He spoke, quietly. She bit her lower lip, nervously and finally nodded to Sam’s relief. Beatrice sent her sister to her room. Sam observed her flat, it was decent and neat.
Beatrice hesitated before talking. “What do you want?”
“I want us to be together.”
“That isn’t possible. We broke up.”
“You broke up with me. I wasn’t ready to end the relationship.” “Sam…please…don’t make this hard.”
“What do you mean? I love you.”
With that, he pulled into his arms and gave a soft kiss. Beatrice sighed. Before she could melt in his arms, she dropped the bombshell.
“I don’t think so, William Alexander Samuel Davis.” Sam drew back as if she had stabbed his heart.
She nodded. “Before Nicky and I travelled to Spain. We saw the headlines and I was…hurt since you never told me.”
“I wanted to leave Paris, so the answer came to me when an attorney sought me out and explained that my long lost grandmother left this house and her mini-café before she died. It seems my parents eloped when their families disapproved of their marriage. Turns out I’m half Spanish; since my father is a Spaniard and I never knew. No wonder Adora was my middle name. Nicky’s own is Agata”
“I’m sorry to hear all this and I am sorry that…I deceived you.”
“Doesn’t matter. I am glad I broke up with the heir before the headlines also stated that I was a gold digger.”
“Beatrice! Please I love you! You don’t know what I have been through especially losing you and Nicky.”
He then poured out everything that had happened after their breakup. Beatrice felt sorry for him and wrapped her arm around him. Her resolve was breaking and she knew wit. She now understood his reasons for conceiving his identity and she loved him the more. “Listen, Sam. I love you whether you are rich or poor. And I promise to stand by your side no matter what. Me and Nicky.” She told him and he hugged her before bringing out the diamond ring.
He explained that he’d been carrying this with him wherever he went, because he always of though of her constantly. Beatrice was speechless.
He went on both knees.
“Beatrice…this isn’t how I wanted to propose to you, but I am desperate…no madly in love with you. Please do me the honor of becoming my wife. Will you marry me?”
“Yes! Yes! Yes!”
Beatrice rushed into his arms and they shared a passionate kiss. They went up to wake up sleeping Nicky and broke the news to her. Nicky became wild awake and was glad for them. It was going to be tough, but they believed that they will win in the end. “Just imagine how mom will be surprised that she will be related to a half Spanish half English person.” Sam joked and Beatrice just laughed.
It was indeed a tough battle. His sister, Brigitte and Edward had won their battle and were going to be married soon, although Brigitte won’t have any inheritance. Brigitte stated she never cared about wealth, but Sam secretly vowed he will give his sister her share once he took over the Davis business. His parents weren’t delighted with his intended marriage to Beatrice, but after a series of arguments. They came to an agreement. He could marry Beatrice as long as he took over the family business and he agreed. His parents took comfort in the fact that she wasn’t fully Spanish, at least she was also English as well. Beatrice and Sam were overwhelmed and clearly happy. His mom even smiled a bit when she saw her two children being extremely happy with their life partners.
One year later, Sam and Beatrice got married. She and Nicky were going to live with him in Spain, but from time to time visit England as well. Beatrice continued her min-café business and was glad Sam didn’t interfere with her independent business. Sam respected the fact that she wanted to make this on her own and he loved her for it. A few months later, Brigitte and Edward were already expecting their first child.
Two years later, Sam and Beatrice were expecting their first child. His mom insisted that Beatrice should come to England where she could an eye on her during the pregnancy. Beatrice was grateful, but assured her mother-in-law that when things become too difficult, she will travel to England. Sam’s mom wasn’t pleased, but she respected her decision. Her daughter-in-law was a headstrong woman and she had come to admire that. Meanwhile, Nicky was schooling and was doing very well academically. Sam and Beatrice were very proud of her. They lived with their children (2 boys and a girl) filled with happiness and full of joy. THE END.
By Vanessa Brock from Ghana