Matthias hated to admit it, but he knew immediately what was going on. The moment Guinevere told him the story, his mind came to a quick conclusion. Based on what she said, someone needed a scandal to weaken Wayne’s position in the bank. A divorce, due to a false claim of infidelity, would do the job. After which, Wayne would be thrown under the bus with another false accusation that had already been set up. Once Guinevere left him, he was done for.
“You’re the start,” Matthias told her.
“Thank you,” was all Guinevere said over the phone.
Guessing from her reaction, she wasn’t a dirty player after all. He had assumptions of her, but they seemed to have changed. Matthias was surprise that she entrusted him with such private information. But the more he thought about it, he began to realise how all of them had grown comfortable with sharing secrets. He briefly wondered if he would share his own. Even though he couldn’t be certain, he was glad people found him trustworthy.
After Guinevere ended the call, Matthias began to ponder over the extra information she shared. She confidently stated that the clubhouse challenge was manipulated. His first belief of it being a show was debunked. There seemed to be something more devious going on and he wanted to find out what. He needed to know if he was going to be played too. Unfortunately, he did not need to do much digging.
That Friday morning, Matthias was called to his boss’ office. He expected a secret meeting with a few directors, as they schemed to out a fellow director they disliked. But when he entered the leather-scented room, he found no one. His boss was missing from his desk and only the Newton’s cradle greeted him from it.
Finding the situation a little odd, he cautiously took a seat among the armchairs. He patiently waited for the office door to open, but after an hour, no one came. Wondering if he got the message wrong, he decided to double check. Just as he got to his feet, the heavy wooden door finally pried open. And in came his boss and a man he had never seen before. The man and his boss exchanged smiles before turning to Matthias.
“You’re here,” his boss said.
Matthias nodded. He was about to greet them both when his boss added, “I have something to do.”
“Should I come back later?” Matthias asked.
“No, you stay.”
Without an explanation, his boss turned on his heel and exited his own office, leaving Matthias with the stranger. The man gestured for Matthias to take a seat before joining him.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Matthias. I’ve heard a lot about you,” the man said.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you too, Mr…” Matthias trailed off, hoping the man would finish his sentence.
“Never mind how to address me. I’m just here to chat,” the man replied.
“I see.” And indeed he saw. Matthias had a sinking feeling that it was finally his turn. Everyone else already had theirs, and now it was his.
“I heard your sister has taken a trip outside of the country,” the man stated.
“Yes,” Matthias simply replied. Maddie had followed her course mates on a class trip. She wasn’t going to go initially, but the sudden scholarship fund made it possible for her to join in. At the reminder of that, he saw how everything was put into place. Matthias knew the man wanted something, and he wasn’t going to sit around playing dumb.
“I heard she’s having trouble returning home,” the man added.
It was an obvious threat. Matthias had not heard anything from Maddie. In fact, he had not heard from her in awhile.
“How do I help her get home?” Matthias asked, as he kept his cool composure.
“The personal case you’re working on is doing very well.”
“And?” Matthias prompted. The only personal case he had then was Jodie’s.
“It must be tough work. Perhaps you might want some help?”
He saw where the conversation was going. Matthias was making good progress on Jodie’s case. With all the inside information, he could actually help her. But it seemed somebody did not want to lose, and they were resorting to blackmail.
“Send the information to me and I’ll make everything run smoothly,” the man suggested.
“Everything,” Matthias repeated.
“Everything,” the man confirmed.
Matthias didn’t know how serious he was, but he didn’t need to question it. If the man got to him through his boss, he was dealing with a big gun.
“Let me think about it,” Matthias said.
“Don’t think too long,” the man replied. He then reached into his jacket and pulled out a name card. After handing it to Matthias, he left without a word.
As the day continued, Matthias thought over and over again about his decision. The choice seemed to be an easy one – Maddie was family and Jodie was not. It shouldn’t be difficult to choose his sister, but he had a conscience too. Despite having done things for his boss he was not proud off, the victims of his actions were not people he knew personally. Matthias was not sure if he could betray Jodie.
When night finally came, he needed to make a pick. Whoever the man was working for probably had little patience. After attempting to call his sister and failed, Matthias took it as a hint that he did not have a lot of time. So, he placed the name card and his phone before him. He was going to do one or the other: call Jodie to tell her about what happened or send Zach with the case files to the address on the name card. Matthias had to choose.
The Clubhouse © 2014 – 2015 by Jeyna Grace.
All rights reserved. No part of the series may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission from Jeyna Grace.