Love or Tradition

Chapter 6

I am in the guest room of Candor while Christina is standing behind me, brushing out my hair. Tonight, I am meeting Al's family to get to know him. Christina wanted me to wear something else besides the dress I wore this morning so guess where we went…shopping, yay! Note the sarcasm. I do not like shopping at all so after three hours of shopping, Christina found three suitable dresses for me to wear to each of the dinners. On my first dinner date, I will be wearing a strapless purple dress with white sequence around the waist. On the second dinner date, I will be wearing a strapless indigo dress with white lace covering the top half of my dress. The third date, I will be wearing a maroon strapless dress with a taffeta pattern. Although, with the first and third dresses, I will have to wear a shawl to cover my shoulders. The second dress has the lace that covers my shoulders so I don't need to wear a shawl.

"Why don't you let your hair down?" Christina asks, breaking me out of my thoughts.

"I don't know," I truthfully answer. "We usually have our hair either in a bun or braided, it has to be pulled back."

Christina just nods then continues to brush my hair. She then starts to French braid it and when she's finished, Christina walks over to her table of accessories and grabs a rose hairpin. She pins it at the top of my braid then walks in front of me, inspecting me. "Gorgeous." She walks over to her make-up table but I stop her. "Christina, you know I can't wear make-up."

"Yeah right, I see you wearing mascara."

"Maybe, but that's how much I can wear in Abnegation. I can't wear eye-shadow, blush, or all that other stuff. My parents think that mascara is enough make-up for a woman of Abnegation."

"Oh, that makes sense." She walks away from the table. "Well, it's a good thing that you really don't need make-up; you look beautiful without it."

I smile. "Thanks, Christina."

"No problem; now, let's get you into that dress."

I nod then follow Christina into the bathroom.


My father and I walk up to one of the houses surrounding the palace. The council members live somewhere close to the palace so that if there is an emergency council meeting, the members can get to the palace in time. My father looks at my dress, which is the purple strapless dress with white sequence around the waist. I am wearing a black shawl over my shoulders to cover them. "You look beautiful, Beatrice."

I smile at him. "Thanks, dad."

He gives me a reassuring smile before knocking on the door. After a few moments, the door opens and a man with short brown hair and eyes stands at the entrance. He is wearing a black shirt with a white vest over it and black pants and shoes. "Good afternoon, your majesties," the man greets. "Please, come in." We step into the house and a woman with dirty blonde hair and blue eyes stands in the living room, smiling at us. She is wearing a knee length, black dress with white polka dots on it, along with black and white stripped heels and earrings. "Hello, your majesties," the woman says, curtsying before us.

"Hello, Anthony and Addison," greets Dad. "How are you?"

"We are well," states Anthony. "We are honored to have you in our home. Our son should be down soon."

"I'm right here, father," Al says, walking into the room. He is wearing a white dress shirt with a black jacket over it. He also wears black pants and shoes and his hair is somewhat gelled. Al smiles at me before bowing. "It's nice to meet you again, Princess Beatrice; you look lovely this evening."

I blush at Al's complement. "Thank you, Al."

"Dinner is almost ready," says Addison. "You can wait in the living room if you want."

"Do you need any help?" Dad asks. He always wants to help out even if he is the guest in someone else's home. Of course, that's what a person in Abnegation is supposed to do.

"No, no; you are our guest. I just need to take the chicken out of the oven and let it sit." Addison walks into the kitchen while Anthony and Al stay us with. My father and Anthony immediately start talking about politics and stuff like that while Al and I awkwardly stand at the side.

"So, what do you like to do for fun?" Al asks after a few minutes of silence.

"Well, I like to read or draw. Sometimes, I meet with Christina and we hang out at times," I answer.

"What do you draw about?"

"Usually I draw about how I am feeling; it's one of my stress relievers. What about you?"

Al shrugs. "I don't know; I'm usually with my parents or something else."

I nod. We stand in silence before Addison comes back in to announce dinner. We all file into the dining room and sit down in the chairs. On the table, there is chicken, potatoes, and peas. A simple Abnegation meal, I thought to myself. We take the amount of food we want before passing it around. Then we start to eat; my father and Al's parents conversing as we ate. Al and I didn't really talk as much and I could see that his parents aren't ok with it. I try to strike up a conversation with him but it didn't last very long. After a while, I gave up on trying to talk to him. I then thought about my future if I did marry him. We would probably not talk to each other at the dinner table or acknowledge each other in our own home. Soon, we finish our meal and it is time for us to say goodbye. Al's parents try to get us to stay but we had to leave. Right after we left, I faintly heard Anthony scolding his son for not trying to impress me.

"I'm sorry Al wasn't the one, Beatrice," says Dad.

"It's all right," I answer. "There are other fish in the sea."

"That's true." We go back into the carriage and travel back to Candor.


"The date didn't go so well, then?" Christina asks me while I'm in the bathroom, changing into my nightclothes.

"It was more awkward than anything," I answer. "We barely spoke to each other and when we did, it was only a few sentences."

"I see. Oh, by the way, Drew's parents called and they said that they couldn't do dinner so they wanted to know if you would come over for lunch."

I walk out of the bathroom in my purple nightgown. "So I'm having lunch with Drew and his parents?"

"Yeah, and on that same day, you'll eat dinner with Peter and his parents."

"So I'm having two dates in one day?"

"Basically."

I nod. "Thanks for telling me, Christina."

"No problem. I should probably let you get some rest now. Goodnight."

"Night." Christina leaves the room and I climb onto the bed, wrapping myself up in the blankets before sleep claims me.

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