Chapter 2

After I cut the cake and ate it all by myself and the guy Raymond, or Ray, or whoever the hell he was, stared at me disgustedly, I let out a big burp and looked at the old woman.

"I believe I deserve a few explanations," I growled.

She smiled and I cursed at myself for ever feeling sorry about her age.

The guy perked up, but still managed to sulk and look moody.

"This was an agreement which had to be made because of a bet that I've lost to your grandmother."

"What?" I spat out. "A bet?"

"It was about whom your grandfather would propose to and he chose her. So to compensate for this bet, your grandmother asked me to promise either all my property or my grandson to her grand daughter. I opted the latter," she shrugged.

"You decided to sell me off instead of your money?" Ray yelled and I chuckled.

"Well, I secured you a wife in a way," she shrugged again.

"I have many girls dying to be my wife!" He protested.

"One should never be so overconfident," I snickered.

"And you should just shut your mouth," he growled and turned towards the old ladies. "Can't you just cancel the entire bet?"

"I'm afraid I can't," the old woman said.

"Why not?"

"Because in case I fail to give her my grandson, then our entire property would belong to her, leaving us on the streets."

"I don't care where you go," I smirked. "I'll at least get the property."

"That's unfair! Why don't you cancel the marriage?" Ray argued.

"That's not possible as well," Grandpa sighed. "If the marriage is cancelled from our end, then we would be on the streets. It is a two way agreement. You should stay together."

"Why did you guys have to make this stupid bet?" I yelled. "And Grandpa, weren't there any other women instead of these two that you could choose from?"

"Had I known this earlier, I would have done things differently." He sighed.

"Ugh! So there is no way for us to cancel this deal?"


Ray's phone buzzed and he took his call. "Hello? Yeah, man? What? Not this weekend!" He yelled. "What if I don't submit it?" He waited. "Fail? They can't fail me for that! No!" He groaned. He heard what the person on the other line told, and sighed. "I'll come back. Okay, thanks, mate. Yeah, bye."

"What happened, son?" His mother asked worriedly and he simply sighed.

"I have to give my seminar, or else they are going to fail me this semester. I need to go back to the university by tomorrow."

"Tomorrow? I can arrange to it," the father spoke. Also, we can get you admitted in the same university tomorrow! It will all be done, fear nothing as long as I am here!"

"Same university? What?" I stepped back. "I am not going anywhere! I'm not leaving this college!"

Well, I tried to protest against their wile decisions, but in the end, they won. My bags were packed overnight, the tickets were booked and I was shipped off to another country, right after my birthday and also my so called marriage. I was made to sit next to the sulky guy and my grandparents were before us and his parents, behind us.

"Listen," he whispered. "This thing about our marriage, keep it a secret. I don't want it spreading all over the university. Also, deal with this for the time being. I'll try to find out a loop hole in this entire deal so that we can get off this marriage. Okay?"

I nodded. This was unexpected. He didn't talk much while I was the one yelling on the top of my voice and now, he was the one who was trying to rectify all of this. Maybe he wasn't all half bad.

Soon we landed and the reality of the present situation hit me in the gut with all the force I couldn't imagine. I was right now in a different country, away from all that I have, and I am being forced to live with a man that I didn't even know till yesterday. Ah, is that living going to stop someday? No! I am stuck with him forever due to my marriage to him!

It was all a blur to me. We were zooming down the roads in a car and were hurried into a house which seemed good enough for two people to live in. I might be a little too stingy in calling it good enough, but in reality, the house was brilliant. It was a villa with a swimming pool in the backyard. Of course, the Kingsley's were loaded, but I didn't know that they were loaded until this extent that they could provide such housing to their son who is just studying.

"I wonder how much rent you guys pay for this villa," I mumbled as I entered it.

"We don't. We own it," the mother smiled as if it was a small issue and walked inside. "We can't let our son live in a cheap apartment, so we bought this. He seemed satisfied."

"Which student wouldn't?" I mumbled rolling my eyes.

A phone started ringing again and Ray pulled it out of his pocket and put it to his ear. "Yeah, I'm here," he smiled. "Now?" He looked at all of us and his eyes landed on me. "No, not now. I'll come and meet you there. Will you wait for me?" His eyes softened as he looked down smiling. "Me too. I'll come there. Bye." With that, he hung up. As soon as he looked up at me, his smile faded away, replaced by disgust. He walked away from there and into a room, which I figured was his. I flopped down onto the couch and sighed. That call should have been from his girlfriend.

My Grandma came out of the kitchen, nodding in satisfaction. Of course she liked the house and especially their wealth. She would be satisfied, why wouldn't she? But then, if she ever considered my feelings, she would know that this was not at all close to satisfaction and that this wasn't something I wanted. I had so many things that I needed to experience and it was all cut off by a bet which wasn't even something I made.

Ray came out from his room after a while looking refreshed and dressed. He wore a white wife beater and a blue button up shirt, blue denims, sneakers and also had a bag slung across his shoulder and a set of keys around his index finger. He was ready to go out and his father stopped him asking where he was headed to.

"My friend wanted me to return his books. I'm going to the university," he replied.

"That's good. Take Angela along! She'll want to see how her new university looks like, doesn't she?" His father said and he looked troubled.

Yep, my guess was right. It was his girlfriend he was going to meet and it would be plain awkward for me to tag along with them. He looked at me with pleading eyes and I sighed. "I guess I'll skip today, Mr. Kingsley. I feel jet lagged and want to rest for today," I smiled a little and Ray sighed in relief.

"See, she doesn't wanna come. I'll be off then!" He waved and took off in his car.

That thankless son of a bitch. I just saved him from a great deal of embarrassment and he just took off making it seem like I was the one who was disinterested and not him. Deciding that I was not going to help him out again, I turned away.

"And, Angela," Mr. Kingsley called. "Call me father, not Mr. Kingsley. You are my daughter in law, now!"

"Ah, yes. F- Father," I cringed internally.

That single thing made me feel like this situation was even more real and a never ending nightmare.

They began showing me around the house and how things worked around there. I was never the one to take care of bills when I was at home. My Grandfather often did that job and made me do all the miscellaneous things. But now, when I was listening to all the words which made me the owner of the house, it felt different. I had a family now, it was no longer my grandparents and me. I had an extended family whom I never knew of and a man whom I had to live with. Whoever said this, said it right - Everything changes in the blink of an eye.

It was evening and I sat alone near the pool in the back garden, enjoying the slight breeze. I wasn't all that in high spirits, anyone could tell by the way I looked. My Grandma slowly made her way to me and sat down quietly beside me. After a few moments passed in absolute silence, she spoke, "How are you feeling?"


"That's a big word to use."

"Well, not my fault that I feel this way."

"See, Angela. Things happen for a reason and you should learn to go with the flow. Sulking over things and losing happiness will not give you anything. I was 14 when your Grandpa chose me. That old hag and I were neighbors back then. He married me when he was 24 and took me off to another state. We had a ten year difference between us and I was basically a kid and didn't know anything. The language and the culture in that state were all different. I still didn't back down. I strove hard and we worked up our differences. It does take time, but in the end, it all turns out for the better," she smiled at me.

"But I was tricked into the marriage! I wasn't even told of the marriage!" I whined.

"Would you have accepted if I simply put down the truth before you?"

"Not really," I grudgingly accepted.

"Trickery is not always bad. I gave you a good life, a good husband. Don't you understand that?"

"There is no love, Grandma! Why don't you understand that? Also, these are responsibilities that I am not yet ready to take," I sighed.

"Love comes naturally with time, my sweet Angel," she smiled like a wise old woman after a long time. "When you truly start to accept and forgive someone in your life, love blooms naturally. But if you don't and keep grudging a person, the seed of love will die before it gets planted."

"Accept?" I mumbled. Accepting someone was an abstract concept in my life. What was acceptance? What did I have to accept in someone? And the nature of forgiving was not in me. I never forgave anyone. If someone did something wrong to me, then I served them revenge, just as they deserved. Forgiving was a sign of weakness to me and this old woman put up two abstract concepts in my head, along with the most complicated emotion of them all - Love.

What was love?

Was liking a puppy so much that letting go was not possible, love?

Or was gifting someone because of their birthday, love?

Was liking something a lot, love?

Who would give me an answer for this? I was a relationship virgin until my birthday. I was never in a relationship in the 18 years of my life. I always crushed on people and a few celebrities, which at the most lasted a week, but then liking a guy for real that having thoughts of being in a relationship were never there for me. In fact, I never really entertained the thought of being in love. My mind was too preoccupied on things which mattered to me the most. I wanted to become rich and successful. I worked hard to achieve things which others thought were impossible to reach. I was a competitive soul and found no lure in love. So, I never inclined myself towards that. Now that I am married, people expected me to change and believe in all the things I cared not to even think of. What would make them understand that I wasn't prepared for all of this?

"Ponder over these thoughts. I'm going back inside," she smiled.

"Wait, stay with me!" I held her hand.

"I'll be there till tomorrow night," she replied. "I'll go back after I see that you've settled down."

She smiled at me and walked back into the house, leaving me alone with the slightly chilly breeze and my unanswered thoughts.

"Can someone settle down in just one day?" I asked out loud, knowing that no one was going to answer me and it was going to be an unanswered question, just like the rest.

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