“Oh my God, Mother.” Lilly did laugh this time. “Bewitch me? This isn’t the Middle Ages, you know, and Travis Caine isn’t some sort of wizard.”
“He’s a criminal is what he is,” her mother argued. “An element that has always attracted you. You were forever attempting to converse with the less desirable elements that attended any party you were invited to. No matter where we went it seemed you were attracted to the shadows. I warned your father you would come to a bad end if that habit continued.”
Arguing with her mother was fruitless. She and her father had often discussed her mother’s inability to ever admit she was wrong, and the trials in loving one who perceived that they had no faults.
“Lilly, you’re not fully healed,” Desmond said softly, his expression still filled with censure as he watched her. “Until you’re well enough to understand the decisions you’re making . . .”
“Don’t patronize me, Uncle Desmond,” she warned him then. “I’m not a child, nor am I a simpleton.”
“Then stop acting so foolish!” her mother said.
“I’ve had it.” Lilly turned for the door and began walking across the room. “This discussion is over.”
“Don’t you dare walk out on me, Victoria!” her mother demanded furiously. “I won’t have it.”
Lilly ignored her.
Striding from the room and up the stairs, Lilly couldn’t help but wonder if perhaps her uncle had somehow managed to deceive her father. Or worse, could he have killed his brother?
Stranger things had been known to happen, she thought. Desmond had obviously wanted his brother’s wife. Desmond had never married. He had no children. He had dedicated himself to his brother and his brother’s family. Or had he simply dedicated himself to his brother’s wife?
That was sickening. The thought of it had her stomach churning as she stalked into her bedroom, slammed the door closed, and locked it.
Could Desmond have actually killed his brother?
God, she couldn’t imagine such a thing. And knowing her mother’s complete obsession with appearances, she simply couldn’t imagine Angelica would have gone along with something so horrible.
That didn’t mean she hadn’t done it.
Pacing to the window, she stared beyond it into the shadowed, cool depths of the gardens below and fought to make sense of what was going on around her.
It was obvious Travis felt Desmond or Jared was involved in her father’s death, and the attempt on her life as well.
Now, why would a “facilitator,” a man who was no more than a criminal, really, care about proving whether or not anyone was involved in anything?
She frowned at the thought. That didn’t truly fit the personality of the man known as Travis Caine. A blood-monger. A man who had no problems killing in the name of his so-called job.
A mirthless smile twisted her lips at the thought. He acted more like an agent than a criminal.
But he’d made several good points. One being the fact that her father had trusted her with much more information than anyone had ever suspected.
Part of that information were the login and passwords for the Harrington financial vault that they kept on a secured server in the Harrington Manor.
She turned and stared at the laptop on her desk.
It wasn’t secured. Anyone could have tapped it and could spy on any information she pulled up. She needed the ability to secure it, and she needed to do so quickly.
Was anything in this house secure though? She turn
ed slowly, her lashes lowered, her gaze taking in the areas that could possibly hide a camera. Finding electronic bugs would be much harder . . .
The memory flashed in her mind. She had stored a secured laptop as well as a variety of devices used to detect audio or video surveillance.
She remembered wrapping them in protective pouches and placing in the cabinet that sat in the corner.
Sitting down on the bed, she pulled her boots off, careful to keep her demeanor cool. Something warned her that her bedroom was indeed bugged in some manner. She was more prone to suspect the audio versus the video, though. Not that video bothered her over much.
She almost laughed at the thought. She had visited the French Riviera more than once and made use of the nude beaches there. She had never been particularly shy about her body, just rather picky about sharing it.