Saturday arrived sooner than I had expected. Throughout the week, I had been a nervous wreck. I had never been to any high end social gatherings and now Gideon wanted me to accompany him to a charity function. Did he not know, by taking me along, he would most probably be subjecting himself to total public humiliation?!
“Do I look all right?” I asked Gideon who looked delectable in his suit.
Gideon turned and put his hands on my shoulders. “You look beautiful,” he complimented. I blushed at his words but gave him a small smile nonetheless. Gideon calling me beautiful tugged at my heartstrings. I really didn’t want to fall in love with him.
I was wearing a gorgeous sea green dress, exactly like the color of Gideon’s eyes. The dress was strapless, made of chiffon and had a sweetheart neckline. It was so pretty, and the color was exactly like Gideon’s eyes. I had a feeling that my baby bump was showing, but Gideon told me that it wasn’t that noticeable, I just hoped he was right.
Just like he had promised, Gideon took me shopping for a dress. We were doing fine until the time came to pay for the dress. I didn’t want Gideon to spend any more money on me than he already had. I wanted to pay for my dress by myself. However, Gideon was not having it. He wanted to pay for the dress, and both of us started arguing over the fact that who was going to pay. In the end, Gideon won, simply because the store’s cashier threatened to kick us out if we didn’t stop arguing. Gideon quickly slipped her his credit card and she wasted little time in checking us out.
Now, the day had finally arrived when I would accompany Gideon to a charity function, I just hoped I did not look like a charity case. Would people notice that I wasn’t like them—rich. Would they notice that I was from the lower class? Was it possible for someone who had been poor their whole lives suddenly manage to blend in with the rich and powerful? Were there any rules on how to act like a rich person?
“Are you sure you won’t rather take someone else with you?” Even though my heart ached when I asked this, I had to make sure.
“I’m a hundred and ten percent sure that the only woman I want to take with me to this function is you,” Gideon replied. Then without a word, Gideon took my hand and led me out of the room.
“Wait, I have to go see Nico. Why don’t you wait for me in the living room and I’ll be down in a couple of minutes?” I told Gideon.
“All right, but make it quick.” With a kiss to my forehead, Gideon sauntered away. Not wanting to waste my time, I headed to Nico’s room.
I knocked before entering Nico’s bedroom. He was sitting on the bed, a bunch of textbooks opened in front of him. Nico studied way too much; he was determined to follow his dream of becoming a doctor.
He looked up when I entered. “Hey Alice, you’re leaving now?” Nico asked.
“Yes, I just came to tell you that you should be in bed by eleven,” I said. Even though it was a weekend, I didn’t want my brother staying up late.
“Yeah, don’t worry. I’m almost done with my homework and revision, and I’ll sleep after doing a bit of reading,” Nico responded with a smile.
“Good, and if there is anything you need, let me know immediately. I have my cell phone with me so don’t hesitate to call me,” I said.
“Don’t worry, I’ll be fine.” Giving him a small smile, I left his room and went to meet Gideon in the living room.
He was swiping away on his cell phone when I arrived. “Ready to go?” I asked.
Gideon smiled before putting his phone away. “Yes. Let’s go,” he said, and together we left the castle and headed to the function, my nerves a jangled mess.
When we arrived at the grand hotel, I was in awe. It was a lofty building with a red carpet flowing down the stairs. A few cameramen were standing around, snapping pictures of influential people filtering out of the cars and entering the hotel.
The chauffeur opened our door and Gideon and I slipped out. To say I was nervous would be an understatement. It was one of those moments where I wished I had my necklace; although, if I did have it, I would’ve twisted it to breaking point.
We entered the grand hall and I had never seen so much glitz and glamor in my whole life. There was not a single spot which wasn’t glimmering in the light. It was breathtaking. There were a considerable number of tables which were decorated to perfection. Across the tables was a cleared space, which I assumed was a dance floor.
“Gideon, you finally arrived!” A man who looked to be about Gideon’s age walked toward us and gave Gideon a brotherly hug. The man had shaggy brown hair and bottle green eyes and a strong muscular body.
“Jared, you sure know how to throw a charity function,” commented Gideon as he returned the hug, while I just stood there by Gideon’s side, observing the two of them.
“Thanks mate,” Jared said before his eyes landed on me. “And you must be the beautiful lady who managed to snag Gideon’s heart.” Jared took my hand and placed a small kiss on the back of it. “Hello, I’m Jared,” he said.
Snag Gideon’s heart?! Yeah right!
“Hello, I’m Alice, nice to meet you,” I said softly.
“I’m glad to finally meet you. This arsehole over here has been hiding you from the world. Now that I’ve finally met you, I can see why,” Jared stated.
Yes, because I’m poor and he is embarrassed of me.
I didn’t reply, because I had no idea whether he was praising me or insulting me. However, I did start to get uncomfortable. Gideon sensing this, wrapped his arm around me, securing me to him.
“Don’t scare my girl, Jared, go and see if Laura is here.” Gideon told him.
“That woman seriously messes me up,” Jared commented before turning on his heels and walking away from us.
“Is he your friend?” I asked Gideon, who was led me to a group of people, all dressed impeccably, their attire screaming wealth. I just hoped that I looked the part of rich and powerful.
“Yes, but a very irritating one,” replied Gideon just before he greeted other people.
For the next thirty minutes, Gideon greeted and introduced me to almost everyone who was present at the function. I tried my best to smile and talk to people, but it was like the people had their hearts encased in a block of ice. No one truly smiled; I tried to talk one lady and she gave me a look that said ‘Why are you talking to me, woman?’.
The next hour consisted of a wonderful dinner with a four course meal and Jared announcing the outrageous amount of money that had been collected, which would all be given to the children’s hospital. I was touched knowing that rich people weren’t that bad. Sure they were snobby and mean at times, but at least they donated money to charity—even if it was only to show the world.
As soon as we finished our meal, Jared announced that it was time to dance, and the orchestra started playing their instruments, and soon everyone was dancing. I wanted to dance with Gideon but he was dancing with Trish and he had promised another lady that he was going to dance with her after the song finished. It was then that I decided to go to the lady’s room and to call home and make sure that Nico was in bed.
So with a final glance at Gideon, I made my way to the bathroom. Once inside the pristine walls of the bathroom, I entered one of the four empty stalls and quickly relieved myself. This pregnancy was loosening up my bladder.
Once relieved, I stood up and fixed my dress. Just as I was about to exit, I heard voice. It sounded as if two ladies were conversing. And by their tone, I could tell that they were not happy.
“Did you see that woman he brought along with him, she resembles a dwarf. They look ridiculous together,” said a high pitched voice which belonged to lady number one.
“I know and she is already pregnant, did you see that bump. She doesn’t even know how to dress up to hide that bump,” said a slightly deep voice which belonged to lady number two.
“Well I’m glad the pip squeak would not stay with Gideon forever. Just wait till this year ends and we won’t have to see that midget again,” lady number one stated.
My heart cracked at hearing them. They were talking about me. I placed a hand on my tummy; Gideon said that the bump wasn’t noticeable, but clearly he was lying, these two had definitely noticed.
“What do you mean? He’s going to divorce her?” Lady number two questioned.
“Obviously, did you not see the ad? Gideon only married the ugly dwarf because of a baby. Once the baby comes, Gideon is going to get rid of her. Good for him, he deserves someone much better,” stated lady number one.
“Who do you think he’ll marry then?” Lady number two enquired.
“I don’t know, hopefully it’ll be someone with class and a personality, and hopefully she won’t resemble an ugly dwarf,” replied lady number one. “By the way, just between the two of us, Gideon did say that he would like to take me out sometime,” she said.
“Wow, lucky you. I can only dream about being with a man like Gideon,” lady number two said with a dejected sigh.
Lady number one chuckled. “Come on, we should get going. Hopefully I can get Gideon to dance with me before this night is over,” lady number one said and then I heard the clacking of retreating high heels.
Once I heard the bathroom closing, I exited my stall and went straight to the sink. A sob broke through me as I replayed the conversation in my head. Time was passing away rapidly, and at end of December, Gideon was going to kick me out. I would watch him marry someone else—someone who would be rich and knew how to dress up. She would be tall and would not look ridiculous standing next to him. Gideon would have a herd of women, begging him to marry them, while I would have no one.
You’re a strong woman. Since when did you need a man? My subconscious sneered.
Since the moment I started to fall for my husband.
Quickly opening my clutch, I touched up my makeup and forced myself to stop crying. If Gideon saw that I had been crying, he would get upset and his night would be ruined, and I was not going to let that happen.
As soon as I had pulled myself together, I took out my cell phone and dialed home. After talking to Suzy and making sure that Nico was in bed, I gave myself one final glance in the mirror—to make sure I did not look like I had been crying—before exiting the bathroom.
I looked around for Gideon only to see him dancing with a strange woman. I bit my lip as my heart ached at the sight of my husband laughing and dancing with another woman. It was clear that he did not miss my presence.
Looking around for a place to sit, I started making my way towards the chairs when a deep voice stopped me.
“Why is a beautiful woman like you not dancing?” I turned around and saw a man around twenty eight standing with a smile on his face. I didn’t remember the man’s name, I just knew that he was one of Gideon’s business partners, because Gideon had introduced me to him.
“Uh—I’m a little tired,” I said, not wanting him to know the real reason I was not dancing.
“Too tired to honor this man one dance?” He asked.
“I’m sorry?” I blinked at him in confusion. His dark blue eyes searched mine.
“I’m asking you if you’d like to dance with me, if you’re not too tired,” he replied.
His request took me by surprise. I didn’t think anyone would want to dance with me—even Gideon didn’t. But with surprise came hesitation; Gideon wouldn’t be mad, would he?
Right now, he has no idea that you even exist, and even if he did, he doesn’t care. You should dance with him, at least he wants to dance with you. My subconscious stated.
“Sure, I’d love to.” I gave the man my hand and he led me to the dance floor.
“So, did you like the charity event?” He asked me as we swayed to the music.
“Yes, it was amazing. If you don’t mind me asking, what is your name again?” I questioned.
“My name is Justin,” he replied.
“Oh, thank you for telling me. It’s just that Gideon introduced me to so many people I lost track of names,” I explained.
“That’s all right, no worries. It’s a shame that you’re married,” Justin stated.
“What do you mean?” Was he saying that Gideon made a mistake by marrying me?
“I mean, if you weren’t married, I would’ve asked you out, maybe even ask you to be my girlfriend. Gideon is one lucky man,” Justin said bluntly.
“Oh.” His words took me by surprise. I had no idea anyone would want me to be their girlfriend. Justin’s words made me feel happy for some reason. But I couldn’t tell him about mine and Gideon’s contract and that our marriage was only for a year. I wished I could though, I wouldn’t mind having Justin as a boyfriend either.
“If you don’t mind, I’d like to have my wife back,” Gideon said, his tone firm, his eyes hard.
Justin released me and stepped back. “Of course, Gideon, it was nice to see you,” Justin said before giving me a small smile and leaving.
I eyed Gideon with confusion. What was he playing at? Not only he didn’t want to dance with me, he didn’t want anybody else dancing with me either. And now he was looking at me like he wanted to do something rash.
Before I could utter a word, Gideon took my wrist in a tight hold and dragged me away from the dance floor. I had no choice but to follow, bewildered. Gideon dragged me up the stairs and pushed me inside the first room he came upon as soon as he reached the second floor.
“Gideon what’s wrong, why are you acting like this?” I asked, as I saw Gideon discarding his suit jacket and rolling up his sleeves.
“That was the last straw, Alice. That’s the last time you are going to be with a strange man,” Gideon said, his eyes glowing with fury.
“What are you talking about? I was only dancing with Justin,” I stated.
“Exactly. How dare you dance with a strange man when you’re married to me?!” He all but shouted, he pushed me on the bed and climbing on top of me.
“You were dancing with strange women all night long, I didn’t say anything to you,” I responded angrily.
“That’s different, I know those women,” Gideon stated.
“And I know Justin,” I replied.
“No you don’t. You’re my wife! The only man you should be dancing with, is me,” he said.
“Yeah well, you didn’t want to dance with me. I know I’m an embarrassment to you, I told you before you’re better off taking someone else with you, but you didn’t listen,” I said, tears welling up in my eyes.
Gideon frowned. “What are you talking about? You’re not an embarrassment. You’re perfect,” he said with conviction.
“Then why didn’t you want to dance with me?” I asked, tears flowing from my eyes. I knew I was pathetic and weak, but I couldn’t help loving Gideon.
Gideon kissed my tear stained cheeks before placing his forehead on mine. “Oh my little fairy, you’re not an embarrassment, far from it actually. I was going to dance with you. I saved the last dance for you. I was going to dance with you in the center of the dance floor and after the dance I was going to kiss you in front of everyone and tell everyone you are my wife.” Gideon told me.
“Why the last and not the first?” I enquired, my heart swelling with happiness at his words.
“Because you pregnant with my baby. And if I had danced with you first then I would’ve never stopped dancing; you would’ve been tired, and I can’t have my pregnant wife exhausted.” Gideon kissed me tenderly, pouring all his sincerity and emotions in that kiss.
“Justin said he wanted me to be his girlfriend.” I told Gideon, secretly wanting him to be jealous.
Gideon kissed me deeply. “Poor man. You belong to me, forever,” Gideon stated.
“Not once this year ends,” I reminded him.
“We’ll see, little dove, we’ll see. I’m never letting you go, not now, not ever,” Gideon responded, kissing me in a wildly possessive manner.
I wanted to tell him that I would leave him once this year was over, but I never got the chance. Gideon kissed me until I forgot everything but his presence and that feeling of his lips as they molded with mine and made me feel loved.
Oh Gideon, what were you doing to me?