Love or Tradition

Chapter 4

After my little outburst with Robert, I keep on walking until I find myself in one of the Amity fields. There are trees lined in a row and it looks like they are apple trees. I lean against one of the trees and try to calm myself down. "Beatrice!" I groan; I don't want to talk to anyone right now. I try to hide myself so that I'm not found. "I know you're here, Beatrice; please come out." I realize that it is my mother so I come out and face her. She notices me and smiles. My mother walks over to me then places a hand on my shoulder. "Your father is very upset right now and Johanna wants to know why you don't want to marry her son."

"Mom, I can't marry Robert," I answer. "He's not the type of man that I like."

"Why not?"

"He was talking throughout our entire conversation and when I tried to talk, he interrupted me and kept on talking. Then, Robert started saying how Abnegation was a useless kingdom and it pissed me off."

"Beatrice, language," scolds my mother.

"Sorry."

"Now, I know that you don't want to marry Robert, but he is the only prince of your age available."

I sigh; I really don't want to marry Robert but my mom is right, there are no other men that are of my age. I know that some of the council members' sons are my age-

"Wait, what if I marry a council members' son?"

My mother stares at me, eyes wide. "Beatrice, that can't happen."

"Why not?"

"If you marry a council member, you'll be downgraded to a council man's wife; you won't be royal anymore."

"I don't really care about that! I want to marry someone who loves me for me. I know for a fact that I won't be able to love Robert."

"I know you don't agree with this, but you have to try. If you don't marry Robert, the other kingdoms will think that we are breaking tradition and they will question our trust; it might start a war."

"But you were able to marry dad and you were an only child."

My mother sighs before slowly nodding. "Yes, I was able to convince my parents to let me marry Andrew. I did love your father very much and I wanted to be with him." She stares at me in the eyes before saying, "I'll see if I can convince your father to let you find a man to marry."

I am at a loss for words, did I hear my mother right? "Are you serious?"

"I'll see what I can do."

I smile before bringing my mother into a hug. "Thank you."

"Don't thank me yet; I haven't done anything."

"Still."

"Come on, let's go back and talk to your father."

I nod and follow my mom back into the palace and into the living room, where everyone is conversing with one another. Once we enter the room, all conversation stops and silence fills the room. My palms feel sweaty and the silence is driving me crazy. Someone speak already, I thought.

"Beatrice, why do you not want to marry Robert?" my father began.

I take a deep breath then let it out. "Johanna, I mean no disrespect, but your son is very rude." Johanna opens her mouth to say something but I keep on going. "Every time I tried to talk, your son interrupted me and kept on talking. Then, he started saying how Abnegation was a useless kingdom and he disrespected my parents."

Johanna stares at me with wide eyes before turning to look at Robert. "Is this true?" Robert slowly nods. "I'm very disappointed in you, Robert; I taught you better than that!"

"I know, I'm sorry," apologizes Robert.

Johanna turns to me. "Let's start this over and I promise-"

"No, I don't want to start over," I interrupt.

"What do you mean, Beatrice?" my father asks.

"She wants to marry a man out of love," answers my mother. "She wants to meet all of the sons of council members available and find a man that she loves."

Everyone got quiet and stared at us with wide eyes.

"A princess marrying a council member?" I hear Cara ask quietly. "Can that be done?"

"I don't know," Caleb answers.

"That's not going to happen," states my father. "You won't be a princess anymore but just an ordinary woman."

"I don't care! I want to marry a man that I love and not have to be sent off to some random stranger I don't know."

"That isn't happening."

"Yes it is! You don't realize it but you are basically sending your daughter off to marry a man she doesn't know to keep the peace between kingdoms. I can get away with this because you and mom have done it before."

My father stares at me, his eyebrows furrowed together in thought. We keep on staring at each other before my dad finally breaks his gaze to stare at my mother. "Are you ok with this?"

My mother walks over to him, placing a hand on the side of his face. "We were able to bend the rules to marry out of love. Our daughter should be able to do the same thing."

"But she doesn't know any of the council members; let alone their sons."

"She can travel to the kingdoms and meet them. She can get to know them and decide if that man is suitable for her or not."

"And what if she can't find that special someone? What happens then?"

My mother thinks about it before addressing to all of us. "Let's decide this. My daughter shall have one month to find a man to marry. During that month, she'll look at all of the council members' sons, that aren't in Amity and are of age, and get to know them. If she can find a man that she loves within that timeframe, she'll be able to marry him." I smile; this is what I want. "However, when the month is up and she is not able to find a man to marry…then Beatrice will marry Robert and become the queen of Amity." My eyes widen; this isn't what I want. "What?"

"Beatrice, this is the only way I can help you," says my mother. "I think this works for both sides, don't you agree?" After thinking it over, everyone nods their heads in agreement. "Ok, so Beatrice, will you take this option or will you instead marry Robert?"

I think about it for a minute before replying, "Just to be clear, if I fall in love with a man, I get to marry him. But if I can't find a man to marry, I have to marry Robert."

My mother nods.

Even though I don't really like this idea, it is better than being forced to marry Robert. "Okay, I agree."

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