What happens when you are the daughter of an important businessman and his mistress? Believe me when I say that it's not a good situation. My mother got pregnant by a powerful businessman, and four years after giving birth to me, my grandfather gave her a lot of money in exchange for me. She wanted to sell me to anyone with money, and my grandfather agreed to give her the money. Then he took me to my father's house, where he lived with his wife and daughter, my older sister. He said that men in our family take care of their children, regardless of who the mother is. So he forced his son and his wife to accept me into their home as their daughter. In front of my grandfather, everything seemed loving, but when he left, I was beaten and mistreated. I wasn't allowed to sit at the table with them; I was treated worse than the house staff. At the age of five, I had to start preparing my own meals. Do you know how many times I burned or cut myself? There were many times I went to bed without eating because I didn't know how to cook. The lady of the house would threaten to fire any employee who helped me. I have a small room next to my sister's, with only an old bed and a small closet filled with dresses previously worn by my sister. The owners of the house say that I am worth nothing to earn money, so when I turned fifteen, I found a small job as an assistant in a café. The pay is not much since I'm underage, but it helps me save money for when I'm of legal age and can live on my own. My grandfather visits once a month, and that day is the happiest for me because I can sit next to him at the table. They serve us food, and we get to eat dessert, something they don't allow me to have when he's not around.
My relationship with my sister is non-existent. I'm forbidden to talk or get close to her. If, for some reason, we come face to face in the house, I have to quickly move away. She has never done anything to me, I suppose she just wants to obey her mother and not make her angry. When I was six and she was seven, she gave me a piece of her chocolate cake, and her mother punished her. I guess she had no choice but to do what her mother told her.
As for my father, I don't even know if I can call him that. We never talk, and he never even looks me in the eyes, which are the same as my mother's. I suppose I remind him of his mistakes. The only time he touched me wasn't a loving gesture. When I was ten, I saw the piano in the house and it caught my attention. I always wanted to play it but was too afraid. One day, I gave in to the temptation and played it, but it was not a good idea. My father gave me a severe beating and screamed that he would never allow me to touch the piano because I would surely become a whore like my mother. It seemed she used to play the piano. After leaving bruises all over my body and spending a month unable to move due to the pain, that man who claims to be my father never spoke to me or looked at me ever again. And I never went near the piano again. It just stood there as another decoration because nobody played it.
"Get changed, you bastard. Your grandfather is coming for breakfast," says the woman whom I am forced to call mother.
- Yes\, ma'am\," I said\, feeling happy as I changed because I would see my grandfather\, the only person who cared about me. I put on a simple and comfortable dress. Unlike my sister\, who has tons of makeup\, I don't wear much. I only have a second-hand lip gloss and a bit of blush for my pale cheeks. My skin is very fair\, and my eyes are hazel. My hair is black\, and I'm not tall but not too short either; I measure 1.65 meters. My body has developed nicely\, although my breasts are still a bit small. But I have good legs\, a small waist\, and a stunning backside\, as my friend Carmen\, the only friend I have to confess\, says. I met her at school\, and she is the other person\, besides my grandfather\, who cares about what happens to me. Although she's a bit crazy\, she's a very good friend.
- "He's almost here\," Lucrecia\, my father Fabián's wife\, said.
I didn't say anything; I just sat and waited when the doorbell rang. A smile appeared on my face; I thought it was him, but it wasn't.
- "Who are you?" my father Fabián\, the man who created me\, asked.
- "I am Mr. Vicente Rodríguez's lawyer. I am Attorney Julio García\," the stranger replied.
- "And what are you doing here? Why didn't my father-in-law come?" the witch asked.
- "Mr. Rodríguez sent me for his granddaughter\, Alana. He is at the hospital\, dying\, and he doesn't want to leave without talking to his granddaughter\," the man said\, and my tears started flowing.
- "That's not true! My grandfather can't die\," I said\, crying.
"There is nothing untrue about that. Now, if you could please accompany me, I would appreciate it. Your grandfather wants to say goodbye," the man said.
I went with the lawyer in his car. Fabián, Lucrecia, and Lucía followed us in their car. I could only ask goodbye, not to take my grandfather away, the only person who mattered to me in the world, the one who has given everything for me. Crying, we arrived at the hospital. The lawyer took me to a room in the intensive care area, and there he was, my grandfather, with his eyes closed, looking very tired. I didn't know what to do or say. I simply approached and sat by his side, holding his hand. The lawyer told me not to worry and that I could stay as long as I wanted, with no one else entering the room. Those were my grandpa's orders.
I spent several minutes holding my grandfather's hand, waiting for him to wake up. And when he finally did, I could see the fatigue in his eyes.
"Hello," I said, tears welling up in my eyes.
"Hello princess," he greeted with a weary voice.
"The man you sent for me says you're very sick. That's not true, right? You'll be just fine, and we'll go for ice cream every Thursday like we always do, right?" I asked, crying.
"I won't be able to, my little princess. But wherever I am, I will always watch over you because you are my most precious treasure," my grandfather expressed.
"I don't want to be alone," I told my grandfather, clutching his hand.
"And you won't," my grandfather affirmed. "You will know in due time, but I want you to know that no matter what happens, never doubt that this old man loved you more than his own life, and I will always protect you." As my grandfather spoke, the machines began making strange noises.
I ran out and called the nurses, who summoned the doctor. But after several attempts, they couldn't do anything. I collapsed to the floor, crying in despair. I had lost the person who loved me the most in life. He was the only one in my family who took care of me. What am I going to do now? I still have a year until I come of age, and I don't know if I can bear living in that house without my grandfather's occasional visits to rescue me from that hell, even just once a week or a month. And now, who will I talk to about everything while eating ice cream on Thursdays?
The rest of the family acted as if nothing had happened. The only one who shed a few tears was Lucia. Mr. Fabian never cried for his father. I always knew he was devoid of feelings, but I had hoped it would be different with his father. When I finally managed to calm my sobbing, the lawyer spoke to us and told me that my grandfather's last wish was to be cremated and have his ashes scattered at the nearest beach. So, tomorrow, the lawyer will come for me to carry out his final request. When we arrived home, I went up to my hideout, which is what I call my room. There, I broke down again, feeling like my life was slipping away as I cried. Eventually, exhaustion took over, and I fell asleep.
The next morning, someone woke me up by splashing water on my face with a glass.
"What's wrong with this crazy person?" I spoke, annoyed, as the cold water drenched me.
"You better show some respect, you wretched girl. The lawyer is downstairs with the old man's ashes. Hurry up so they can leave quickly," Lucricia shouted, gripping my hair, and then stormed out.
I started to cry. I had hoped it was all a nightmare, and that my grandfather would be fine, but it wasn't the case. He left me alone. With a heavy heart, I stood up and went into the bathroom to go through my daily routine. I put on a black dress, tied up my hair, wore comfortable shoes, and went downstairs. The lawyer was there along with Lucricia and Fabian, pretending to be kind in front of him. We all had breakfast together at the table, but I could hardly eat. Afterward, I left with the lawyer. In my hands, I held a small urn containing my grandfather's ashes. We arrived at the nearest beach in Miami. The lawyer gave me some privacy as I scattered my grandfather's ashes on the beach. After a few minutes, I finished and got back into the car with the lawyer. I didn't feel like talking, but I realized the route was different from the one that led home.
"Where are we going?" I asked the lawyer.
"To an apartment your grandfather left for you. I will explain everything that will happen from now on," the lawyer explained, and I nodded. I have no idea what plan my grandfather had before his death, but I know whatever it is, he did it for my well-being.
Upon arrival, I saw that it was a luxurious place. We entered and went up to the top floor. There, I saw a very spacious apartment filled with luxuries. I swiftly explored every room—it was beautiful. It had four bedrooms, a large kitchen, an office, and a spacious living room.
"This place is beautiful," I expressed to the lawyer.
"This is where you can live after your divorce," the lawyer said, and I turned to look at him as if he were crazy.
"I'm not married, what are you talking about?"
"Please sit down and let's talk." I obeyed and sat in front of him.
"What's going on? What did my grandfather do?"
I asked, concerned.
Alana, you are the greatest treasure your grandfather had. A few months ago, he ordered an investigation into his son and his wife to know how they treated you. He had suffered two heart attacks before and knew he didn't have much time left. When the investigators provided him with all the information about how badly your father and his wife treated you, including the times you were physically abused, your grandfather couldn't bear it and had a third heart attack. That's why he ended up in the hospital. I don't know how he managed to sort everything out before he died, but he did."
the lawyer explained.
"So, he died because he found out how badly his son and his wife were treating me?" I asked, tears welling up in my eyes.
"Yes, that's why he arranged your marriage to a very powerful man. You're underage, but your grandfather had legal custody of you. Your mother had handed it over to him before she left. But when your grandfather died, your father would have obtained custody of you. The only way to ensure that your father doesn't have control over you or the fortune your grandfather left you is for you to get married. Your husband will be the one taking care of you, and your grandfather's will won't be read until you turn 21. In the meantime, a group of lawyers and you, your sister, and your father will receive a monthly allowance from the company." the lawyer clarified, leaving me unsure of what to think.
"I understand that he did it to protect me from my father, but who will I marry? I don't want to be with someone without love." I expressed my worries.
"Don't worry, this is just a contract to protect you. Your grandfather granted me custody so that I can authorize your marriage. I can't take care of you as I travel all the time. The wedding will take place tomorrow, and it will only be you, the groom, the groom's family, and a few of your grandfather's friends. If you want to invite someone, just let me know. Furthermore, the marriage contract ensures that your husband won't lay a hand on you or mistreat you in any way. He won't force you into intimacy if you don't want to. And, after three years, if you wish to divorce, you can do so, and you'll be able to live in this apartment. Additionally, you can study whatever you desire at the university. Of course, this contract is confidential and only known by you, your future husband, his lawyer, and me. No one else knows about it, which is why you'll have to behave like a normal couple in public and even kiss each other." the lawyer explained.
Upon thinking about it, if I stay with the man who fathered me and his wife, I'll be beaten and insulted daily. They probably won't pay for my university either and will try to keep the monthly allowance that I'll receive. So, getting married seems like the best option. But who will I marry?
"I accept the wedding with the terms proposed by my grandfather, but who will be my husband? Please don't tell me it will be an old man." I asked nervously.
"No, he's not old. He's 27 years old but looks younger. Believe me, many have tried to capture him but failed. Although he was married four years ago, he had an accident that left him in a wheelchair. Luckily, he underwent surgery two years ago, started his rehabilitation, and now he's as if nothing happened. However, his wife left him because of the accident, she didn't want to be married to a man in a wheelchair, and he suffered a lot because of it. He never wanted to get married again, but this is a favor he owed to your grandfather, whom he loved dearly. That's why he agreed to marry you." the lawyer told me.
"It's unfortunate what happened with his ex, but I'm glad he has recovered. Does he know what Fabian and his wife did to me?" I asked, feeling uncomfortable.
"No, he doesn't know. Your grandfather only told him that he wanted to protect your fortune and didn't want your father to take over the company. That's why the reading of the will won't happen until you turn 21, so that no one knows the percentage each person is entitled to until you can manage your share alone." the lawyer commented.
We talked for a while, but she never told me the name of the man who will be my husband, so I will have to wait until the wedding tomorrow. The lawyer left, not without telling me that tomorrow he will bring my wedding dress and they will come to do my hair and makeup. He also told me that he will speak to Fabián and his wife. I don't want to be in his place when he does.
I'm nervous, the lawyer arrived very early with a stylist and my dress. It is a simple yet beautiful and elegant dress. I called my friend Carmen to accompany me. At first, she was surprised, but when I explained everything in detail, including the life I had with Fabián and his wife, she understood. So, my friend supported my wedding, knowing that this man can't harm me in any way and can't touch me if I don't want him to. Therefore, not only did my friend accept to accompany me, but she also agreed to be my witness in the ceremony. It will only be a civil ceremony since my future husband is divorced and had a bad experience with his previous wife, who was most likely in it for the money and ran away when she realized she had to act as a caregiver. But that's none of my concern.
"Friend, you look beautiful," says Carmen, who arrived very early at the apartment to be there for me and find out everything from me.
"Thank you, friend. I don't know what I would do if you weren't with me," I say nervously.
"I'm here, and no one is going to separate us. We'll go to university together, and if your new husband misbehaves, you just give me a call, and I'll make sure he won't have any descendants," says my friend while we both laugh.
"Are you ready? The ceremony starts at ten," says the lawyer entering, and I'm dying of nerves, but I know my grandfather would never let me marry someone who could hurt me.
"Yes, I'm ready," I say, standing up, and the three of us head to the wedding venue.
"The wedding will take place in the mansion's gardens, where you will live from now on. As I mentioned, there won't be many guests, just the groom's family, close friends of your grandfather, and no one else," says the lawyer.
"Well, I hope everything goes well. I'm very nervous," I say, concerned about what kind of man I'm marrying.
"Relax, my friend. We're with you," Carmen tells me, and I smile at her.
We arrive at a grand mansion. I can't believe how huge it is. It's immense, and the gardens are so green and beautiful. God, they must spend a fortune on gardeners here. I hope they pay them well, and hopefully, many of them because this place is enormous. After a few minutes, we finally reach the entrance of the mansion. Upon entering, an employee informs us that everyone is in their places to begin the wedding. My friend goes with an employee to take her position as my witness, and after a while, the employee returns and indicates that we should enter. I walk hand in hand with the lawyer, and thank God, he's holding me because otherwise, I would probably have fainted. When we reach the judge, the lawyer hands me over to my future husband, and I can't believe how handsome he is. He is about two meters tall, with gray eyes, a well-toned body, full lips, and a firm-looking rear. Just by looking at him, I blush. He takes my hand and helps me to sit in front of the judge who will marry us. The judge starts speaking, and both of us sign the papers, as well as our witnesses. Finally, we are declared married, and they tell him that he can kiss the bride, meaning me.
I had forgotten about this detail. The lawyer did mention that we would have to kiss in public, but the problem is that I have never kissed anyone. He stands up and extends his hand to me so that I can do the same. When we are both standing, he takes my hands, leans in, and our lips meet. At first, I didn't know what to do, but I respond to his kiss, and the applause of the guests fills the air. Amidst the nerves, I didn't pay attention when the judge said his name. I will ask Carmen as soon as I can. She was probably paying attention to everything.
"Come, let me introduce you to my parents," says my now husband, taking my hand, and I follow him. A couple in their fifties, he looks just like the man, but younger, while the lady is blonde with green eyes.
"Dad, Mom, this is Alana, my wife now," he says, taking my hand.
"Pleasure to meet you, sir and ma'am," I say, not even knowing their last name. What kind of wife am I?
In my defense, it's your fault. No one told me that the man I would marry would be so handsome, let alone that he was created by the gods themselves.
"The pleasure is ours, young lady. We didn't think our son would get married again, but when he told us he would marry Vicente Rodriguez's granddaughter, we were very happy," the man says. I suppose he didn't mention his name because he assumes his son already told me. Ha, if he only knew that I don't even know his son's name either.
"I am also very happy," I said, putting on my best smile.
"Well, I'm even happier that my son has such a beautiful and young woman by his side. I'm sure you'll be very happy together and have a beautiful family," the woman says. If only she knew how this marriage came about.
"Thank you for your kind wishes, parents, but I want to take Alana to meet the most important person in this house," he says, and I don't understand anything.
"Where are we going? Who do I have to meet?" I ask nervously.
"Our son," he says as if it's nothing. I'm only seventeen, too young to have a child.
"Our?" I ask, unable to understand anything.
"Your grandfather arranged the contract because he wanted to protect you. I don't know from what, he never told me, and I accepted because I needed a mother for my son. I always work and I'm not very expressive (as if I didn't notice that I married a Greek god who is colder than the North Pole at Christmas), so when we signed the papers that the lawyer gave you, adoption papers were among them. So, yes, he is our son," he says without any emotion on his face. No wonder he needs a mother for his child, growing up seeing that expressionless face cannot be good for any child. But now I'm worried because I have a son I don't know.
"How old is he? What is his name?" I ask as we continue walking. This mansion is much bigger than it appears from the outside.
"He's three and a half and he has the same name as me," I had to contain the urge to laugh. If he only knew that I didn't even hear his name when the judge said it.
We arrive at a room and enter without knocking. There's a little boy crying under a table in the well-decorated room.
"Christopher, I've told you not to throw tantrums. What will your mom think? She came to see you and you're crying," he says with his cold voice, and even I am afraid. But now I know his name is Christopher.
"You won't have time for me anymore. You'll have children with her, and they won't love me," he says, crying, and my heart breaks.
"Christopher, come out of there," he says sternly.
"Wait, let me," I said, approaching the spot where the little boy is hiding. I sit on the floor as close to him as possible.
"You know, Chris, I understand that you're scared, but I promise I won't take your dad away from you. Plus, now you and I can play together, and for now, there won't be any more kids in the house. But if there ever are, I promise we'll always have time for you," I said, and he approaches me a little more.
"Do you promise?" the little one asks, wiping his tears.
"I promise. What do you say if we wash that beautiful face of yours and then go downstairs? We haven't cut the cake yet, so you could help us," I said with a smile.
"Yes, Mom, I'll help you," he says happily and comes out of his hiding place. I get a better look at him, he's identical to his father: his gray eyes, his hair, his skin, everything's just like him. Of course, he's even cuter. Now that he's within my reach, I embrace him.
"You're beautiful. Let's wash that red face," I said, getting up. His father helps me, and we take little Chris to the bathroom to wash his beautiful face. When he was ready, the three of us return to the party.
At the party, I met Carmen's little one, and just like me, he fell in love with me. She told him that she was his Aunt Carmen, and he happily accepted her. The little one never left my side; he always called me 'mom' and gave me little kisses. It's so beautiful; I can't believe that after all the suffering in the house of the man who fathered me, there's now a little one calling me 'mom' and giving me kisses. Mrs. Cristina is my husband's mother. I discovered her name because the little one called her Grandma Cristina. And the man is Fernando, I knew this as well because of the little one.
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