“Are you sure you want to do this Bill?” Michael sat next to Bill on a couch in the living room. The room was still decorated the way Mary had done it. The house felt empty, in a way dead without Mary there with them.
“I can’t raise a kid and run a company at the same time,” Bill looked at the contract sitting on the coffee table. It was a deal to sell his half of the company he had started. Had he chosen to do this a few years before the amount would have been a few hundred thousand dollars, maybe less. Now, with three factories, several contract deals with businesses like Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s, and the option to expand into international markets the company was expanding in ways Bill couldn’t keep up with.
“This is your baby too,” Michael replied.
“Sometimes adoption is the best option.” Bill picked up the paper and looked at the bottom line where he would sign his name.
“There is so much more to make from this,” Michael said. “I think you’re making a mistake.”
From a bedroom down the hall a two-year-old Daisy started to cry. Bill left the couch and took her from the crib. Her nap was over and bill had to make some food for her. The girl laid her head on her father’s shoulder and clung onto his shirt as he carried her back into the living room. Without talking any further about the deal Bill signed the agreement and handed the papers to Michael.
“Where would you like the money deposited?” Michael asked.
“Just transfer it into my checking account. I’ll handle it from there.”
“All 3.5 million?”
“All of it.” Bill carried Daisy into the kitchen and started to cut a banana into small chunks for Daisy to eat. The sound of the front door closing told Bill the deal was done. He was no longer the co-owner of his own company. His half had been sold to investors and Michael who wanted to keep possession of a majority of the company.
For some reason, as he placed the food on the height chair tray, he felt more alone now than before. He had no connection to the outside world anymore. His existence revolved around himself and his daughter. As he came to this realization he watched as the little girl picked up a piece of banana and dropped it on the floor.
The day after Bill was sentenced all eyes were on Daisy. It wasn’t that she felt like everyone was looking at her, everyone was looking at her. Teachers ignored her, maybe it was their way of trying to be polite. When daisy didn’t turn in an assignment, they said nothing. The other kids were whispering and glaring more than usual. This was not the day for someone to do or say the wrong thing. The bell rang and it was lunch time.
The cafeteria was the normal chaotic mess she was becoming familiar with. Daisy moved into line and grabbed a tray. A few steps in Page cut Daisy. At first, she didn’t care, let the stuck-up bitch have first dibs on the shitty food. She was going to barf it up afterwards anyway.
“Get used to being in line. I hear cafeteria food is the family favorite,” Page said, not turning around but being loud enough for Daisy to hear.
“What did you say?” Daisy wanted the bitch to say it to her face.
“You heard me,” Page turned around and looked Daisy in the eyes. “Get used to prison food.” She never saw the white knuckles coming towards her. The snapping of teeth caught the rooms attention. Daisy landed a second left jab to Page’s ear sending the girls head into the tray rack. To finish up the job the fiberglass tray was slammed into the back of Page’s head, dropping the blonde to the floor. Daisy didn’t finish there. The words of the previous day in the bathroom came back to her and she mounted the girl on the floor with nowhere to go. Blow after blow was dropped on the girl as the whole school watched and did nothing. Skin split, teeth flew, and bones crunched as Daisy did her best to destroy something beautiful. When she was finished, she sat up and looked around breathing heavy.
“Listen up everyone,” Daisy yelled across the room. “You seem to misunderstand what is going on here. I’m not stuck in here with you, you’re stuck in here with me.” Daisy finished the girl off with a swift kick to the ribs before walking away down the hall and straight to the principal’s office.
Opening the door to the office Daisy walked inside and said, “You need to expel me.”
Once the reports came in from the school nurse and kitchen staff the principle wasn’t going to argue with her. It took the police much convincing to not arrest the girl before she went home to her grandparents. The image of the school was protected above everything else. As long as a report wasn’t filed there was nothing of public record about the beating. Pages parents on the other hand had other plans. The daughter of old money couldn’t be beaten in school and just walk away, oh no, that was when the lawyers would be called in. How would someone like Page be able to land a good husband with good genes and a prominent job if she had scars and broken teeth. This was unacceptable. Someone would have to pay.