Ch.1| Sneak Peek
“If you do not agree to this contract Alaiyah, your marriage to Lincoln becomes void, and the Mafia will no longer support you financially. Your family will also have a permit target on their backs because the Mafia will not back you,” Lead Capo advised.
“And if Lincoln still wants to marry me without a binding contract?” I raised my eyebrow to meet his arrogant one.
“Alaiyah, my sweet girl. No mafia man has ever married a woman without a binding contract. We aren’t that stupid. We all know that a binding contract prevents you, women, from acting on your whorish impulses and prevents you from taking a single dime from us. Plus, no respectable man will have you as his wife. Your body is now used goods,” he said, winking at Lincoln.
“Fine. Well, if I must live In Holy Mafiamony...” I took a deep breath as I built up the courage to say the next words.
“I. Choose. Divorce.”
“Alaiyah!” My heart was beating out of my chest as I flung myself out of my chair and started chasing my wife down the hall.
“Alaiyah, stop!” I begged, quickening my pace as I tried to catch up to her.
“ALAIYAH!” Finally, I reached out and grabbed her hand, stopping her in her tracks.
“What, Lincoln?!” Her beautiful ice-blue eyes now looked darker than ever before.
“Hey, talk to me!” I tried to reason.
“Talk to you? What do you want me to say? They want a contract; I want a divorce. There’s nothing else to say!” Hearing those words broke me.
“Alaiyah,” I choked out in a whisper as I fought back the tears.
“Baby, you don’t mean that.” I nodded my head side-to-side as I looked her in the eyes, hoping she would hear the sincerity in my voice.
“Lincoln, I do. This... us... it was all a mistake and what happened in there-” she pointed down the hallway, “what happened in there just proved it. You all think of no one but yourselves, and you men only want what’s best for you and your stupid Mafia!” Her voice was getting louder with each word.
“You know that is not true! You need to calm down!” They say two wrongs, don’t make a right, but she was starting to lose control.
“Yes, it is, Lincoln! You’ve always told me about YOUR goals, YOUR dreams, YOUR wants—but when have you EVER asked me about mine?!” I was taken back by her question.
Alaiyah was so headstrong, so there was never a doubt in my mind that she was born to be a Mafia Queen—she had to be, right?
“Lincoln.” She took a deep breath.
“Before I met you, I had dreams and goals and a life. I wanted to go to college; I wanted to be a nurse; I want to get married in a small white church and wearing a white dress as my father gave me away; in fact, I wanted to be as far away from this life as I could possibly go.” All I could do was stare at Alaiyah in shock.
She was right; I never once considered that she wanted a different life than the one she was forced to live. I never took the time to get to know her like that. Looking back on the past four months, it dawned on me that I never really gave her the floor to talk. When we would go out, she would typically just listen as I spoke, agreeing here and there or offering her advice. I guess deep down I was afraid to know her truth. I figured—no I hoped, that if I opened up to her, that she would want to stay. To love me. To be proud of me, but now knowing that this girl, in fact, wanted anything other than to love a monster like me—broke me.
“Just take me home, Lincoln...
Lincoln!" I sprang up from my bed, covered in sweat.
I looked over to Alaiyah only to be met with an empty bed. It’s been a month since she left me, and that night plays on rewind in my head. Every second. Every mistake I made. Every word I didn’t say. The moment I let her walk away.
“Bro, you good?” Luca whispered. I didn’t even realize he was standing there.
“Yeah, I’m fine!” The words came out with more anger than I intended.
“You should just call her.” My brother was really starting to piss me off. He moved in with me the day after everything happened, and although I knew he’s just trying to help, he really wasn’t.
“She doesn’t want me. She’s made that clear.” I clenched my jaw as my dream replayed.
“Lincoln, I saw the way you both looked at each other... you don’t look at someone like that one day, and then decided you don’t love them the next,” Luca whispered as he tossed my phone on my lap.
“Just call her.” Luca walked out of my room, and I rest my head against the headboard—our headboard.
I picked up my phone, and as I went to go unlock it, my eyes began to water. There on my lock screen was a picture of us. Alaiyah was genuinely smiling as I kissed her on the cheek. It was taken two days before I lost her on a horse-drawn carriage ride. That night, we laughed at anything and everything as we tuned out the world. I remember because I couldn’t take my eyes off of her, and she made me feel like the world’s luckiest man. I had pure-love for her, and when I told her I loved her, and she said it back. I never thought in a million years that it would just end as it did—in a car with her handing me her wedding rings.
“FUCK!” I yelled out as I threw my phone at the wall.
Throwing the covers off of me, I jumped out of bed and threw on a pair of gray sweats. I needed to get out of the house; I needed to clear my mind. I walked to the closet and threw on a hoodie and some sneakers. When I turned around, I paused. There was her side of the closet, the empty side. There were no shoes, no purses, no dresses. If a stranger were looking at the scene, Alaiyah would have never existed. I just shook my head and left.
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