Modern Architecture (attn: Yuu)
It was a testament to his vision and the skills of his selected laborers. The project had taken bits of his free time for almost a year - but now it was nearly complete and their were already interested parties. He'd taken the recovered landfill area near the waterfront - a previously undesirable stretch of land and put it to a wide variety of uses. The excavation and recovery to the coastline's natural contour allowed much of Tacharan's unpleasant business to be dragged with the clean waste into Nachton harbor in the name of environmental renewal. The areas of dirty waste were reprocessed inland and disposed of more conservatively. One environmental group's head had begun to sniff around, but a bit of industrial espionage had tipped her off to a local shipping firm that was transporting toxics locally and had seriously substandard safety practices. The issue of the land developers using very eco-friendly and unfriendly processes was forgotten, and Alec amassed more wealth.
The second phase was the breaking and laying of foundation, which was easy - the site was perfect, once re-contoured, for a sizable single family estate with pleasant coastal views and quick downtown access. The view, after the ocean had scrubbed away the last of the filler material, was lovely. Even in the rough it had been nice - once the landscapers had their way with it, the gardens would be spectacular. He knew, due to the location, that he would never want to live there - it was far too high profile. With that in mind, he thought outside the box and set his folks to work.
Importing the team from all over, he put them to work on a modern, edgy design he'd been playing with. The design was simple - an expansion of the tiered beach houses of old, modernized with new layouts, materials and scaled upward. He'd opened up the interior significantly by using typically corporate styled materials - steel and glass of all varieties. The exterior looked almost like a small corporate building - steel and mirrored windows covering the majority of the structure. The rear of the house was the solid state of the structure, along with the roof - otherwise, the building was pure glass to maximize the views.
The interior had done away with traditional walls as well - they were high frosted glass supported by steel framework...and used sparingly. The interior effect was quite open - high, vaulted ceilings with an offset floor plan so that from almost every area of the house one could look out at the excellent ocean view. Built on a bit of a natural rise, the bottom floor was below entry level and extended out past the rest of the house, containing the spacious master bedroom and office space, which were accessed from a single spiral staircase. A small bathroom and a large filled the spaces at the back of the lower floor along the solid face of the building - spaces that would not appreciate the view the rest of the house afforded.
The top floor was arranged as an over-sized loft space and opened to the same awesome views available from the private floor below. The open counter kitchen spread seamlessly into the wide space of the dining room, separated from the rest of the space from the highly polished steel and frosted glass. The bathroom on the top floor was more of an indoor jacuzzi, designed so that an individual bathing would also be able to enjoy the view away from the biting cold of Nachton's winter months. At the rear of the viewing bathroom was also a water closet for more private use.
The final plans included a floral garden to be spread beneath the viewing window on the Atlantic, but the late cold had prevented their planting. The security was also incomplete, but would be finished in short order now that the place was finally coming together. The garage had been a bit problematic, but with a bit of creative exterior work, it now looked like a separate wing to the sprawling floor plan from the road. When taking a ride down the short private drive, the changing perspective broke the illusion, but also revealed the greater artistry of the design.
Various firms had contacted his agents for purchasing or brokering right to the property, and all were firmly rejected. The architects would be handling the selection of prospective buyers personally. After all, it was a shopping list of the city's human elite - due to the unique location and construction, it would not be a safe haven for a nocturnal occupant from the sun's rays. The solid rock it had been perched upon also eliminated the possibility of easy expansion downward, ensuring that a select clientÃƒÂ¨le would not be interested.
The list of buyers, however, would be Alec's new shopping list. Each would be an individual with hearty sums of fluid assets. Those were the types that had things worth taking. Yes...he'd handle the files personally on this one.
She could not afford the beautiful piece of architecture on her assistant district attorney's pay alone - her trust fund however could afford it. Yuu had seen the home in recent architectural reviews of very affluent residences and immediately fell in love with. A work of art in almost all glass and steel nestled comfortably, and privately, along the coastline of Nachton's perch into the Atlantic. It was secluded, private and more importantly, exclusive.
The Liefde towers, although lavishly furnished and close to her work, slowly made her feel cooped up and needed a larger place to call her own. Sharing space, granted a lot of space, with other affluent neighbors was making her claustrophobic and the minimalist design and beautiful scenery called to Yuu immediately. Exactly one minute after seeing the picture of the house, Yuu had her broker on the line tracking down the owner and now she stood in her lobby, giggling like a school girl. Her broker had managed to wrangle a viewing of the home in hopes of submitting an offer to the owner.
Yuu hurried out of the lobby and to her office to give the financial information that the owner was requesting.
The first step was easy - strike from the list anyone already owned or influenced by Tacharan. It didn't whittle many names, but it was a start. With any luck, after the next development was complete some of the names from this list would be removed from the next one. Smiling at the possible expansion of Clan influence, he looked over it again. Top tier officials were removed as well. They were likely controlled by either Anantya or Evenhet, given their positions. Individuals at the top were targets and therefore not useful to him in this scheme. Their names went on another list - the Victim list. Whether for theft or removal, they were the influential folks in the way of Tacharan development.
The next phase was a bit more fun. Arbitrary selection. Some people would find their names on one side or another based on whimsy alone. Others would be included for their usefulness as both a buyer and an expansion of personal influence. Skimming, he found several names to include on the tour list - a local professor of genetics, the assistant district attorney, a cutting edge hemotechnologist relocating to the area, a first term member on the city council and a senior clerk in the city planner's office. Any one would certainly fit the bill.
The professor or hemotech would be gifts for Nova - she'd have fun adapting them to tailor their studies to support her work at Duibne. A council member would be a long term investment for their political teams to shape the future of the city. The assistant district attorney would pretty much cinch the Clan's control over the DA's office, and would prevent reduced influence should someone else remove the incumbent. The clerk would have access to many notes that Alec would find useful in addition to brushing over any difficulties with certification that Tacharan might have while going through otherwise legitimate channels. All could be useful and no one else was likely to get uppity should their status change.
Sending his instructions on to Dess Architecture, he arranged for the five people on the short list to be given a grounds tour by the human head of the firm. They were similar enough in appearance that everyone assumed them relatives. Portions of the event would be filmed by the marketing team to increase sponsorship and expansion of the subsidiary businesses. What they would not know is all of it would be filmed, especially reactions to the property. Alec felt a bit of attachment to the place for some reason, so he wanted to make sure it went to the right person. Pondering the connection, he considered the next step and sent an additional instruction. The internal tour would be given to the selected buyer only, and he would conduct it personally. A little unorthodox, but it would also guarantee to draw out the most sincerely interested party.
Sitting in the back of the CL600 Mercedes coup, she had specifically asked for a white model to go with the outfit she selected for the walk about. As the car slowed in front of the, Yuu pulled out her sunglasses and slipped them over her eyes. The driver promptly ran around and open her door; her shapely leg dipped out from her perch in the car and with the help of the driver, she exited the Mercedes.
Yuu's pink Christian Dior dress contrasted perfectly against the white of the luxury coupe. A wide collar fit snug against her neck with the length of the silk material reaching down to the tops of her knees. She was bare legged but wearing pink closed toed sandals that matched the shocking pink of her ready to wear outfit. It shimmered in the dull sunlight of the dying east coast winter and it screamed money and spring and if that didn't give the impression of money and elitism, the faux draped 3/4 covered sleeves did. Her hair was done up in a tight bun with no accents but her soft pink lipstick. She looked like a Japanese princess bored out her mind and dripping with money - a wonderful package.
Waiting in the front as promised was the head of Dess Architecture, rather she assumed it was. Her broker had mentioned his name but honestly Yuu didn't care to remember it. And so began her adventure with buying architecture instead of just a house. Yuu swung her matching Dior back slightly and grinned happily.
His college degrees were all paid for at graduation, much to his surprise. He'd worked hard and done very well in his theater and business programs, and could have been well on his way to a mediocre acting career, when he was given an offer that he couldn't refuse. Uncle Joe had a very strange acting assignment for him to carry out. The pay and benefits would be more than he'd be able to imagine, but he would have to lead an air tight double life. For three years, he did so without any further conversation. He lived as both Robert Balesteri and Robert Dess.
Three years ago, Uncle Joe had called. He'd a new aspect of the assignment. He would be essentially an underutilized and overpowered secretary for an eccentric architect. He accepted without hesitation. He had met Kevin Dess and was honestly a bit creeped out by his new boss. Though they looked very similar, they were clearly very, very different individuals. And Kevin...he never seemed to blink, and always seemed to stare just a little...too long.
Still, as a twenty-something, he was already well on his way to being fantastically rich. The latest oddity was Kevin's new modern house - a huge departure from his traditional restoration work. It was alarming, and a bit over the top, outside of convention, and exactly what the doctor ordered. When the list of buyers started coming in, Robert could taste their money and influence. When Kevin gave him the short list of people to be interviewed, he was thoroughly excited. A chance to truly rub elbows with the elite. Their time had come.
As the final prospective buyer arrived, Robert checked himself in the reflection of the setting sun on the side of the house. Well dressed man with an aire of hard work about him. Someone who got his hands dirty but cleaned up adequately. He'd nailed the image, and today was no different. Pressing a small button in his pocket, he cued the filming to begin. Kevin hadn't given him any indications that he had a favorite yet...perhaps there would be a second round of interviews and grounds-walking. Robert hoped so.
Walking forward as an image in pink was helped from her vehicle, he smiled and extended a hand.
"Good afternoon Miss Shiroi. I am Robert Dess, the financier behind the work here. I will be showing you around the grounds and answering any questions you might have."
'Shiroi is my first name, Mr. Dess.' Keeping her fingers on the card, she tapped the front of it to get his attention because she was only going to say the next thing once. 'My name is Shiroi Yuukaku, Miss Yuukaku.'
She deposited her business card into Mr. Dess' hand and walked past him, taking in the scenery and squinting slightly at the sun's reflection off the glass house. The warmth of the sun was pleasant, especially for the tail end of winter that Nachton was experiencing. Nachton seemed to only function at night so having a day tour was exquisite to say the least.
Taking off her sunglasses, she hooked one of the arms in her mouth and walked around the side of the property, thankful for the walkways since her heels would have certainly sunk through the grass. She wasn't above slipping off her shoes - but again it wasn't quite spring yet. She would though, during the summer when the temperature rises; she'd run circles in the backyard just living it up, alone and free.
Yuu was absolutely certain she'd get the house, it was the snob in her that had such confidence and until now it had never let her down.
"My apologies, Miss Yuukaku. Please, avail yourself of the estate grounds. Due to the late frosts we have held off on completing our planting of the oceanfront gardens, but as you can see the heartier brushwork and screening trees on the landward side are planted and flourishing."
Following just a way behind her, he allowed her to take in her surroundings at her own pace. Kevin had been very, very specific about that. Everything at their own pace.
From the live feed, Alec watched the woman walk through the grounds as the sun began to set. Initially, he had been uncertain about her, but as she walked the paths and darkness fell, he knew that she was the one meant to own it. She was the only one who behaved as if it were already her home, the least likely to treat it as a simple commodity. The others looked with an appraiser's eye, she merely walked as if it were simply her own.
Who was he to disappoint her? Reaching forward, he sent the message on to Robert. Miss Yuukaku would be the owner of the house by tomorrow night, when the second phase of the tour would commence and final arrangements would be made.
With a slight start, Robert reached into his pocket and read the message. If she was the right person, she was the right person. Her driver was receiving a folder with all of the pertinent information - she would not be interrupted. He just wished he hadn't messed up her name. He knew he was going to catch some shit from Kevin over that.