Luka is ready to head home. "You can leave. I'll meet you back at the compound," I say.
He shoots me a look, and I ignore it. I'm still searching for whatever account paperwork Mark must have left behind.
"That's not going to happen," Luka says.
My original plan had been to offer the account with the money to Mikhail and his men. In exchange, they would leave Bay and me alone.
But that doesn't seem likely. Luka is determined to keep Bay in his life, and I see his point. She's already smitten with him, and he is her biological father.
It's what I've wanted, his involvement in her life—in our lives.
But his involvement with organized crime doesn't quell my nerves or anxiety. How am I supposed to look the other way? What about the safety of my daughter? I could never live with myself if something happened to her.
"Then give me a hand," I say.
"What exactly are we looking for?" he asks and puts Bay down on the sofa. She climbs off and latches herself to his legs. They are inseparable, and it's only been a few days.
"Daddy." Bay clutches onto his legs, and he lifts her into the air, flipping her upside down before putting her back on the sofa. "Again."
"Again?" Luka asks, giving Bay his undivided attention. He's smiling, his eyes bright, and it's honest and genuine. Without a doubt, he loves my daughter—his daughter.
It's as though Bay has realized what she's missed out on and is making up for it, stealing his attention every second that she gets. She's too young to understand why he wasn't around, and leaving would inevitably hurt her.
I don't want that for Bay, and dare I admit that, I don't want Luka out of our lives, either. I just need stability. I can't constantly be looking over my shoulder, worried about the danger we might face because there are men who want him dead.
I hope I'm wrong, and it's nothing more than my fears and insecurities standing in the way of what could be.
"Oh, right." I've already combed through the desk, coffee table, and television console. The bedrooms drawers were also empty. "If Mark stole money from Mikhail and has a foreign account, wouldn't there be paperwork?"
Luka lifts Bay into the air, flipping her again before letting her gracefully fall onto the plush sofa. "It could also be on a laptop, thumb drive, or cloud server. There's no reason he would have had to print the documents unless he planned on wanting copies because he would flee the country."
"He mentioned us moving because of his job." I pinch the bridge of my nose. My head is throbbing, and I could use a heavy dose of caffeine to ward off an oncoming migraine.
"Maybe he did print the documents. Where does he keep his passport?" Luka asks.
"The top drawer in his desk but the passports and papers weren't there. Mine are gone too," I say.
His jaw clenches, and he is as grumpy as he looks.
"What is it?" I ask. My stomach sinks. What does he know?
"Could be nothing. I'll call Mikhail and have one of his men check the office where Mark used to work."
"You might have been adamant about not wanting to leave the country, but I suspect that Mark planned to flee and take the two of you with him."
I'm done searching the apartment if Luka doesn't think what he needs is in this place. I plop down onto the sofa. "Why take the documents to the office? What purpose would that serve?"
"He may have needed them to book plane tickets out of the country. Of course, he could have just taken a photograph with his phone to capture the information, but no one said Mark was smart."
Luka places Bay on the sofa beside me, and she climbs into my lap. The girl has an endless amount of energy. At least while I'm at work, she's usually at preschool and is socializing with other kids her age.
"How about we head home?" Luka says.
While his place hasn't quite felt like home to me, the cold apartment brings back memories of Mark's threats and his recent death on the living room floor.
And while I had only imagined it before, a glimpse at the video is enough to give me nightmares.
I can't live here.
"Okay," I say and lift Bay, glancing down at her bare feet. "Where are your shoes and socks, little miss?"
"I'm a tiger," Bay says, showing me her most enormous roar and hand gesture to prove her toughness.
"Did you teach her that?" I chuckle, glancing at Luka as he follows me into her bedroom and grabs her shoes and socks from the floor.
"I may have endeared her with the nickname tiger."
"And what about me? What does Zaya mean?" I ask. I'm confident it's a term of endearment. I just haven't figured out quite what it means.
Luka smirks, his eyes bright and twinkling with mirth. "I can't give away all of my secrets."