Mike rose to his feet. "Come now, let's go to our suites and rest for a while then we will get ready for our trip later. I already arranged a car for us so that we can survey the whole land without interruption. I also informed the owner of the land that we want to meet him in person so that we can discuss everything..." he said.
Caroline smiled, impressed by Mike's hands-on approach in helping her securing the land. Then she has to remind herself that they are going to become business partners soon, that's why he is very supportive in helping her with all the steps in acquiring the land, besides he had a huge crush on her.
They exited the restaurant after settling the bill.
After lunch, they start their journey to see the piece of land that Caroline was planning to buy. While onboard the rented car, Mike was busy supplying to Caroline all the info about the land.
They finally reached the starting marker of the land and the vehicle moves slowly so that they can watch the view outside without missing anything. They no longer venture outside the car because the scorching heat of the sun is damaging to the skin and they forgot to bring an umbrella.
It was a flat land. Some areas of the ten-hectare land have abundant trees growing on it such as coconut trees, mango trees, banana, acacia tree, and etcetera. It was easily accessible by the road.
"This land is perfect for a theme park...then let's built a luxurious hotel and the crowd drawer is the pristine beach. You need to see the beach!" Mike raves.
Caroline likes his grand idea.
Thirty minutes later, they finally reached the end of the land that was situated near the beach area.
There were towering coconut trees lined up on the beach. Mike instructed the driver to park the car so that they can get out of the vehicle.
They stepped into the sandy powdery white shore and inhaled the salty breeze fanning their faces. Mike and Caroline found shade under a coconut tree. They stand there for a while scanning the entire length of the beach that was entirely secluded. They can't see a soul on the beach.
"So, what do you think?" Mike asked her.
"The land is huge and teeming with green life, I super like it. And this sandy white beach here is fantastic! It's the icing of the cake," Caroline observed with delight.
"I will buy it!" her final answer, her eyes flashing with excitement.
"Alright, I will call the owner Mr. Fernandez right now for confirmation," he said.
Mike placed a call for Mr. Fernandez on his phone.
The call was answered promptly at the other end. "Hello..." the male voice said.
"Hello, Sir... hope you still remember me, Mike Santos. I have a buyer for your land, she is very interested to buy the land. We're surveying the land now and we're almost done. Can we proceed to your house to discuss some important things related to the land?"
"Yes, I will be waiting for you here at my house," the voice said.
"Okay, we're heading there now," Mike replied and ended the call.
Mike looked at Caroline. "Let's get back into the vehicle and proceed to the owner's house, he's waiting for us."
"Let's go!" Caroline replied enthusiastically.
They ambled towards the parked car and get inside the vehicle. Mike told the driver to bring them to the address of the owner's house.
Twenty minutes later, they finally arrived at the said address.
Mike texted Mr. Fernandez informing him that they finally arrived at his doorsteps.
A moment later, a middle-aged man emerged from the door of a bungalow type house. He wore a pleasant smile on his lips.
"Welcome to my humble abode, guys!" the man said and opened the gate wide for them to enter.
Mike and Caroline entered the gate while the driver parked the car under the shade of the tree beside another car.
The owner smiled pleasantly at the newcomer.
"Sorry to say this...but another buyer is also here intending to buy the land...he just arrived ten minutes earlier ahead of you guys," Mr. Fernandez said.
They entered the house and proceed to the living room.
Mike and Caroline were stunned to see Daniel sitting on the sofa.
Daniel, in turn, was faking surprised to see them there as well. "What a small world! What are you guys doing here?" he asked wide-eyed.
"Daniel, what a coincidence to see you here also," Mike responded.
"Guys, please have a seat," Mr. Fernandez offered the sofa to the newcomer. "So...you guys know each other?" he scanned their faces.
Mike nodded his head. "Yeah...sort of," he answered.
There was an uncomfortable silence engulfing between the visitors, they were looking at each other, both preoccupied as thoughts were running rampant on their heads.
"Guys...since you both are here with the same intention to buy the land...let's just make friendly bidding. I will sell the land to the highest bidder," Mr. Fernandez declared thinking it is the only way to know who is the rightful owner of the land that he and his siblings inherited from their deceased parents.
Caroline went silent for a moment. She looked at Daniel's face trying to gauge what is his plan and how far he will bid for the land. Is his money bottomless? Because if he is extremely wealthy then she will lose the bid within five minutes of the start of the bidding. "Do you want us to bid?" she found herself asking Mike absentmindedly.
"Do you like to own the land? I mean how far you would go just to have it?" Mike asked her instead of answering her question.
"Yes! I wanted the land. I want to own it!" Caroline answered without hesitation.
"Okay, we will officially start the bidding," Mr. Fernandez said.
"I will start my bid at 8 million," Daniel said looking at Caroline straight into her eyes.
"I will go for 9 million," Caroline uttered bravely feeling like a millionaire. She never thinks that the time would come that she will fight for a piece of land and would willing to lay her precious millions just for this sole purpose of obtaining something grand for her bright future.
"My next offer is 10 million," Daniel said, smirking. This time his whole focus was on Caroline's face. He wanted to see her expression when she can no longer continue to bid further because she already had no money left. The girl has little money but the guy on her side is loaded, Mike is the real wealthy individual between the two, certainly not Caroline.
Caroline holds her breath in defeat, she only has 10 million cash in the bank. She looked at Daniel...so this mysterious guy is rich? eh?...why she had a feeling that she's gonna lose the bid to him. She wanted to wipe that smug on his face badly. She glanced at Mike sadly.
Mike reached for her hands and clasped them in his, he can feel her sadness. She was already contemplating defeat in her mind and he knows it. But since she's the apple of his eyes, he doesn't want to see her feeling sad and defeated. Well...he can always top up her money. He was about to bid for 11 million when they were interrupted by the ringing of the phone coming from Daniel.
"Excuse me, guys. I will just answer the phone," Daniel said and went outside.
He answered the caller. "Hello...yes...what about...whaaat? You bring...? in the hospital...why? Attempted suicide?" his face gone pale while gripping the phone with his hand.
Whys is this happening again?
"Okay, I will catch a flight today. I will be there as soon as I can!" he said panicking.
Daniel went back inside the house in a hurry. "Guys, I'm sorry. I can no longer continue the bidding," he looked at the owner for understanding. "Mr. Fernandez...I will call you later or tomorrow. I have to go back to Manila because of an emergency, family matters," he explained quickly.
He throws Mike and Caroline a friendly nod and then left the house in a hurry, he entered the waiting car outside and was gone in split seconds.
Mr. Fernandez, Mike, and Caroline were left inside the house processing slowly what just had happened.
"So...what will we do now?" asked Caroline in bewilderment.
"We will postpone the bidding and wait for Mr. Daniel Lopez to contact us again," Mr. Fernandez said.
"Okay, we're going now, Mr. Fernandez. Please give us a call if Mr. Lopez is finally ready to resume the bidding," Mike said.
The landowner nodded his head. "Yes, I will."
Caroline and Mike rose to their feet and exited the house. They entered the car and instructed the driver to bring them back to the Green View hotel.
"Whew, what a day!" Caroline released a deep sigh.
Mike pinched her nose playfully. "Cheer up, sweetie! You will eventually get the land in the end," he said.
Caroline smiled wanting to get rid of her worries for Mike's benefit.
Suddenly, her mind wandered towards the mysterious Daniel.
Who is Daniel?
For a short time that she met him, he messed up her mind quickly.
And now he's going to take the land away from her?
Something is not adding up.
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