Beyond the contract
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Everything had always come easy for Crystal. Her life was easy, loving parents and a brother who would stand by her through thick and thin. Unfortunately her life came crashing down when her parents died in an unfortunate car accident, following that, years later the heartless billionaire, Ryke Sterling forces her into a contract marriage. She tries to adjust to her new life as Ryke battles with his demons. She finds out a new world exists, one of sex, power, money and betrayal. Her once perfect life is completely turned upside down as it changes pattern like a kaleidoscope. Rykes demons of his past threaten to destroy everything he had built. He struggles to overcome them while trying to keep the walls he built around himself. He watches as she tries to peel the layers off him while battling with the biggest form of betrayal from the people she loved the most. He realizes that he can't move forward if he doesn't stop running and faces his past and without it, he can't have a future to look forward to. He knows he has to make a choice, either set Crystal who could possibly be his future or let his demons of his past consume them both. He fears he might ruin her but can you really ruin someone that already lived in ruins?
Ryke Sterling stared at the city from thirty stories above. People scrambled about like little ants going about their daily activities.
Greendale was as they called it The City of the Rich and with the money came numerous scandals making headlines.
His lips curved a little as he remembered the one currently topping the news.
"Logan Steele is on the verge of losing his company".
Slowly he turned, making his way to his bar. One of the rules of the company was, never drink on the job.
He poured himself a drink, bringing it to his lips.
The perks of owning the company, he thought.
Logan was a good man, he almost felt sorry for his current predicament but like his father used to say.
"Only the mighty survive in the world".
Tomorrow was going to be an interesting day. He couldn't wait to see how it would all play out
The news came at her everywhere she turned. It was just written in a different way.
"Billionaire Logan Steele signs away his company".
"Steele Co-operations, A Lost Legacy?"
"Logan Steele on the verge of losing his company"
"Sterlings: The Future of Steele".
"Crystal, did you hear what I just said?".
She snapped out of her thoughts to meet her best friend's eyes.
"I'm sorry Bels, what was it?".
Isabella signed sadly, "I asked if Logan has come up with a plan".
"He hasn't left his study in days. He won't tell me anything. Nobody is telling me anything", Crystal finished angrily.
"He will figure it out. He is the smartest person I know".
Crystal looked down at the last headline, "I really hope he does".
"Sir you have Logan Steele here to see you".
Ryke's lips curved, "Let him in Kimberly".
He would admit, he had a lot of respect for the man standing in front of him.
Logan lost his parents at the age of sixteen, thrusting him into the business world. He had single handedly taken a multi-million company and made it into a billion dollar company while shouldering the responsibility of raising his little sister.
But unfortunately it takes little to make or break a man. In his case, it was a tiny mistake.
One might be wondering why he was going after Logan's company.
Steele Co-operations dealt with the production of machineries, Sterlings was one of the biggest accounting companies in the world. They were not competitors but in the business world, you go after what you can or in this case, what you want.
He finally raised his head to acknowledge him.
"Logan Steele, how is it that we had not met prior to this. It's a shame it has to be under such circumstances".
Logan glared, "Cut the crap out Ryke and tell me what you want. I would say you wanted my company to get the competition out of the way but we both know that's not what this is about. Our companies are in no way related. So I ask again, tell me what you want".
Ryke sighed, "Tasha was right. It is always business with you".
Logan's face turned red at the mention of her name making Ryke's lips curve higher.
Even though his father had been a complete asshole, he had been right about certain things. One of which was, "Women are vile creatures that will destroy you if you give them the chance".
An evidence of the point was standing in front of him.
"You can sit Mr. Steele"
"What do you want Ryke?" asked Logan reluctantly, taking a seat.
Ryke closed his laptop, "I'll tear up the contract that you signed handing Steele Co-operations over to me".
"In exchange for what?".
"I have a new contract, my lawyers already had it drawn and sent to me. All you need to do is sign it and you can be on your merry way with your company still in your name".
He stood up, handing Logan a sealed contract.
He watched with a small smile as he read through the details. It would be any second now, five, four, three, two, one.....
"You can't be serious", Logan sprang out of his seat.
Finally losing all sense of humor, Ryke said, "Three days, that's all I'm giving you before I start tearing down Steele Co-operations".
Logan threw the contract at him as he walked out angrily.
"Three days Logan".
Crystal scattered the last pieces of the bread crumbs.
The birds all gathered round to peck at them. She watched and wondered what it would feel like to be like them.
She would be able to spread her wings, soaring in the sky without a single care in the world.
She would be free.
"Mum used to stare at the sky too with that same wishful look. The birds don't have it as easy as you think".
She turned to her brother sharply, "How did the meeting go?. Did he agree to your terms?. Are we going to lose the company?"
"Snowflake, I told you it doesn't concern you".
"You can't say that Lo, I know it's your company but I'm a Steele too, it's a part of my legacy too".
"Don't worry about it. Everything will be fine".
He came closer, pulling her in for a hug then pecking her forehead.
"Everything will be fine Snowflake. I promise", he whispered into her hair.
She tried to make herself believe Logan's words as she tossed and turned in bed that night. Logan had gone through tough times, but never had she seen hopelessness in his eyes before.
Throwing the cover off, she got to her feet grabbing her running gear.
"I don't know what to do". Logan paused, "I heard he was a bastard but this is just taking it to another level". He paused again, "He gave me three days to sign my sister off as his property. He went quiet, "I don't care if it's just for a year or a single minute. I'm not letting him anywhere near Crystal".
"What?", Crystal burst into the study, "He wants you to do what?".
"I will call you back Derek". Logan ended the call and turned to face her.
"You should be in bed. You have school tomorrow".
"I've had enough. You are done keeping me in the dark. First of all, you go and sign a paper handing him the company, I still don't understand how that was possible. You are the smartest person I know. Now you are hiding the fact that Ryke Sterling wants to buy me in exchange for the company?"
"Crystal you are blowing-"
"No you don't get to interrupt me. We are a team Lo, or at least I thought we were".
Logan sighed, running a hand through his hair, "You want to know what's happening. Okay then. Sit and I will tell you everything".
The rain poured down, hitting the sheets angrily. It had come out of nowhere. It reminded him of her.
Another of father's words rang in his ear, "A plan will always work out when executed properly. It might take a bloody amount of time but remember, it will always work out".
He had laid out his plan, following his father's advice and executed it strategically.
It took two years for it to actualize but here he was.
He closed his eyes as he remembered how it all began.
~~Two years ago~~
Kimberly walked in holding a bunch of documents.
"Sir, I have all the papers ready. All you need to do is sign them so demolition can begin".
If there was one thing about Kimberly, it was that she was efficient and almost never wrong which was why he had hired her immediately after she graduated.
He would admit, she was a sight for sore eyes but he would never break one of his rules and that was Never mix business with pleasure.
He nodded at her. A silent indication that she could leave.
"Kimberly", he called out.
She paused but didn't turn.
"I will be going to look at the place myself".
Ryke couldn't recall why he bought the land particularly. Oh actually he could, it was because of the restaurant standing built on it.
The place was colorful, everyone and everything around it radiated happiness. It looked like it needed someone to help down the spirits.
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