"Mia, wake up", Sheema was shaking me, trying to wake me up.
I was so exhausted and sleepy I couldn't even open my eyes.
" Let me sleep", I said as I pulled a cushion beside me and covered my face with it.
"Mia it's your wedding day", Rania slapped on my arms.
" Ouch!!" I exclaimed.
"Even dogs are more loyal than you", I cried in pain.
" Fuck these functions, I never thought a wedding can be so exhausting", I said as I rolled my blankets over and sat up rubbing my face.
"Wait till you find out what happens next", Rania said giggling.
I pulled the cushion and threw it at her, she ducked it easily and it hit Umair who entered my room.
"A man is here for you, Waleed Kamal sent him", Umair said, glaring at me.
"What does he want now?", I asked surprised.
I remembered the incident from a few days back when the bastard touched me. I was surprised by this guy, he knew I was engaged and was getting married in a week and still, he had the nerve to touch me like that.
I was mad at him and I was mad at myself for not slapping him at that moment. I had never expected he might do something like that. I thought he despised me, his eyes had kept me disturbed for nights. The intensity of his grey eyes, the unknown emotion they held, and the touch that lit up my whole body.
I was not supposed to think about him in this way, I was engaged and soon I would be someone else wife, but his touch affected me. It made me crave for him, and that was not an option for me. I hated him for making me feel like that, he should have controlled himself.
"Come fast, he has got flowers and said he was instructed to deliver them to you in person", Umair said with a bored expression.on his face.
I looked at Sheema and Rania, they both were looking at me curiously. I ignored their gazes and followed Umair to the drawing-room where the man was waiting.
I recognized the man immediately, he was Waleed's driver, I have seen him on a few occasions with Waleed.
"Mam, Waleed Sir has sent this for you, and he had instructed me to hand it to you personally", The driver said as he gave me the bouquet and a gift box.
I took it from him and thanked him, the driver left immediately. I removed the card from the bouquet and started reading it.
"Congratulations on your Wedding,
I kept the bouquet on the center table and held the gift box in my hand, it was a slender long rectangular box.
I opened it and looked at the item inside with astonishment, it was a charms bracelet with miniatures of a coffee cup, a girl in a white gown, a book, a duplex villa, a car, and a teacup.
I knew what it meant, it was all our meetings assembled on a bracelet. I retrieved it from the box and marveled at its beauty. It was set in platinum and each charm was studded with diamonds and gemstones. I was sure this was worth a King's ransom.
"Oooh Pretty", Rania said as she slid the bracelet from my hand.
"What the hell Rania", I shrieked.
" Sheema have a look, Waleed Kamal has got the hots for our darling Mia", She teased me.
I glared at her, Sheema snatched the bracelet from Rania and looked at it with wide eyes.
"Do you realize, it's worth a fortune", Sheema said astonished.
I didn't reply to her, I didn't know what to say, I could never understand this man and what he wanted.
"Liar", My subconscious said.
"He wants you"
"No he won't, you are just imagining things", I snapped at my subconscious.
I didn't want to think about him, it was my wedding day and I felt he had already ruined it for me. Why for God's sake, this man can't see me happy?
"What's going on between you too", Sheema asked with suspicion.
"What the fuck, this is what you think about me?" I hissed at her.
"I mean had he ever said that he likes you?" She said embarrassed.
"I don't know, what he wants", I replied.
" It's quite simple Mia, he wants you", Rania interfered in the conversation for the first time.
"Why did he gift something like this to me?" I said disturbed.
"Because he wants you to remember him whenever you see this, I don't understand what this car signifies though", Rania said examining the bracelet carefully.
I knew exactly what it signified, but I couldn't tell it to any of them. It would be too weird, they would ask me why I didn't kick him in his balls for doing something like that.
"He drove me home from the site, last week", I said censoring the significant detail.
"Okk", They both replied in unison.
"What are you gonna do about this?" Sheema asked.
"I will return it to him of course", I replied.
I shoved the bracelet in the box and hid it under my shirt when I heard voices outside the drawing-room.
We came back to my room, I hid the bracelet between my clothes in my wardrobe. There was chaos around the house, everyone was busy in the arrangements.
I barely ate anything during breakfast, my hunger famished after seeing Waleed's gift. I never thought he could ever want me, The Waleed Kamal, CEO of KKC the most eligible bachelor in town wanted a girl like me.
"Mia you need to eat properly, you have a long day ahead. And stop thinking about that dickhead, he is an asshole for gifting something like that on your wedding" Rania snapped as she gulped down the paratha ( a type of bread) with halwa ( a type of dessert)
"I don't know I am still in shock, I never thought that he would ever think about me in this way", I said rotating the spoon in my hand.
" Mia do you like him?" Sheema asked.
"Of course, no, you both know I like Imaad", I replied.
" Then just stop thinking about that asshole, and think about your beautiful future with Imaad", Rania said and stuffed my mouth with the Paratha.
I took a shower and dried my hair waiting for the beautician to arrive. The jewelry and the bridal dress had arrived a day before from the designer.
Sheema had laid them on my bed, it was a chili red colored lehenga with an intricate flower pattern. I had selected this myself, I loved the red color and it was a must on my wedding day. I was looking out of the window when I saw Imaad's father and his uncle coming out of their car, I was surprised why they had come at this time it was only 1 O'clock and the nikah was scheduled at 5 in the evening.
Sheema came into my room after half an hour, she looked pale and disturbed, I started panicking I knew something was wrong.
"What happened"? I asked her.
"I don't know what to say Mia", She replied, her voice was hoarse as if she would break down any moment.
"Sheema, stop panicking me", I cried.
"Imaad's father wants that fifty percent of your company to be transferred to Imaad's name", Sheema said.
I looked at her in shock, I was doubting her mental health, How could Hassan uncle ask something like that?
"You are kidding right?" I asked with suspicion.
"No Mia, it's true", She said.
"They have given time to think till the nikah and if your family agrees they will proceed with the wedding or they will call it off", Sheema said further.
I felt like someone has pulled the ground from below my feet, I fell on the floor, holding my head in both hands.
No, this can't be happening, Imaad can't do this with me. I have to speak to Imaad he will tell me it's all a joke, he loves me right he can't ditch me like this.
I looked for my cell hysterically and dialed his number when I found it. He received the call after a few rings.
"Imaad this isn't true right?" I said, as soon as I heard his voice.
"It's true Mia, tell your family to do as my father tells them and everything will be alright," He said calmly.
I couldn't believe what I was hearing, Imaad can't do this, he loved me and he doesn't want anything else than me.
Sheema hugged me, and we both started crying in each other's arms. No one told me what was happening after that, the beautician came and my mom instructed me to get ready.
I asked Sheema and Rania if my family had agreed to their demands they said that they were discussing it and I should do as my beautician asked me, the elders were trying to sort the matter and I should trust them.
I didn't felt like doing anything, I just wanted to punch Imaad to death for causing this misery to my family.
It was nearly 4:30 in the evening, the beautician had finished setting my hair into a beautiful and fancy style and was know started prepping my face for the makeup.
I looked for Sheema and Rania and they were not in my room, my Nikah was scheduled at 5, it was normal if I got delayed by an hour or two and I was hoping everything was sorted out before it was too late.
As we entered her house I felt something different in the air, it was nothing like the usual house looked on a wedding day.
We were greeted by a young boy, and he directed us to the drawing-room, Mia's grandfather and father entered the drawing-room, they both were looking distressed.
I looked at Dada, he also glanced at me. We greeted them with the usual greetings and her grandfather started inquiring about Dada and me.
I was going through an emotional turmoil, this was the last place I had wanted to be right now and here I was sitting, smiling, and answering her grandfather's inquiries.
I felt a sudden urge to see her, it was so intense that I was barely able to hold myself from running inside the house to her and carrying her away with me to somewhere remote, where no one could find us.
I was so engrossed in my thoughts I didn't even notice Mia's father rising from the sofa and asking me to accompany him inside. I felt a wave of excitement travel through my body, maybe I could get to see a glimpse of her.
The living room was deserted, only two-three people were sitting on the sofa and discussing something serious, my sixth sense was giving me signals something was wrong, but I was not able to figure out what it was.
He directed me to a sofa and offered me coffee, which I politely declined. I was dying of curiosity to ask him what was going on. The house didn't look like there was a wedding, there were no noises nor any charge and celebration in the air. No songs and no young boys and girls running around teasing and enjoying.
What the hell was going on here? My patience was running out, as I was thinking about asking her father, the boy who had greeted us told me Dada was calling me in the drawing-room. As I entered the drawing-room I saw that Dada was sitting there alone, Mia's grandfather was not with him.
"What the hell is going on Dada? This house looks like someone has died here, there is nothing like a wedding celebration in here" I said as I sat beside Dada.
Then Dada started explaining to me what had happened, how Mia's fiance and his family were asking fifty percent if Mia's family business, in turn, to go on with the wedding.
I felt my blood boil, I wanted to kill that son of a bitch for hurting her like that, that bastard didn't deserve her.
"I want you to marry Rameen", Dada said.
"What?" I looked at Dada stunned.
My heart was breaking all records in beating today, I like her there is no doubt in that and I wanted her as I had never wanted anything, but marriage is a great responsibility.
"Think about it, she would be yours forever, do you want anything else?"My conscience asked me.
"Hell no, I want Mia, and I will do anything for her", I replied to my conscience.
"Waleed, you have to hurry. We don't have much time, Rehman is waiting for your answer", Dada said.
"What about Rameen?" I asked him.
"She is a sensible girl, she won't like to get married into such a greedy family", Dada replied.
" But they have been engaged for more than a year?" I argued.
"Yes or No?" Dada gave an ultimatum.
"Yes," I replied.
I knew fortune only knocks once at your door, and if you don't open it, it goes and never returns. I know I decided in haste, the biggest decision of my life, if someone has told me I would be marrying Rameen Shahab an hour ago, I would have told that person to go find a hobby, it was so absurd. But still, it was happening, I don't know how Dada convinced her grandfather and how in turn her grandfather convinced her other family members?
But I was sitting surrounded by ten men which included Daniyal, after exactly half an hour later and the Qazi (Islamic judge) was asking me if I accept this Nikah (marriage contract) with Rameen Shahab with a Haq Mehr ( Dower) of 10 million in gold for the value of the current currency?
He repeated his words, I repeated my answer with greater enthusiasm this time.
The Qazi repeated the words thrice and this time I was truly ecstatic when it dawned on me she was going to be mine.
The Qazi then took my signatures on the marriage contract, Dada and Rameen's grandfather signed as the witnesses.
Everyone started congratulating me, they all hugged me and congratulated me one by one. Rameen's father was the last to hug me and congratulate me
"Thanks, son. I won't be able to ever repay you, for what you have done for us. I just have a request for you, please take care of my daughter, I know she can be difficult but you will be able to mold her with love" His eyes were filled with tears of gratification for me.
I felt someone squeezed my heart, I hugged him again and reassured him,
"Rameen is my responsibility from today, please don't worry I will take care of her to the best of my abilities, and thank you for trusting me with your daughter's life".
He didn't reply, I sensed he was overwhelmed with emotion and gratitude, one person that looked happier than me was Dada as if he had found a hidden treasure.
" Dada stop grinning, you are embarrassing me", I whispered in his ear.
"I would smile all I want, my year's old wish of seeing Rameen as my granddaughter in law has been fulfilled, you will be very happy with her, she is a great girl and only she can tame you", Dada replied.
I just rolled my eyes at his last comment, if only Dada had witnessed her side which I had seen in our first few meetings then Dada will realize what he has gotten himself into.
I was impatient for a glimpse of her, I wanted to see how she looked in her bridal dress, I hope it's red. Whenever Dada used to mention my wedding, I always used to imagine a bride in a red lehenga.
I looked around if I could get hold of someone who could at least sent me her picture, but there was no one around who could help me, all men in the drawing-room were elderly.
I looked at Daniyal, he was busy in a conversation between Dada and Rameen's grandfather.
Asjad and Saad arrived they were looking like they have seen some ghost, I was sure they must have been informed by Sheema and Rania, they hugged me both looking afraid to congratulate me, I know they thought I must be grim right now after marrying Mia, they still thought I hated her, I have never told them how my feelings for her have transformed within a matter of few weeks.
"Guys, at least you can congratulate me, I just got married", I teased them.
They both looked at me in utter disbelief, and then Asjad punched me on my arm.
"You asshole, what have you been hiding from us," Asjad said in a whisper which only the three of us could hear.
"Long story", I said as I scanned the drawing-room, I can't tell them here anything.
"Come we have to get you clothes to wear at the gathering in the evening", They both dragged me with them informing Dada we were going shopping.
They nagged me with their questions to the designer store, where we got a Sherwani (traditional dress for the groom) altered to my size, the designer still couldn't believe that Waleed Kamal would come to his store for a Sherwani to wear at his wedding celebration that too on such short notice.
Now, how can I explain to the world that mine was an "Accidental Wedding". I have gone to attend someone else's wedding and had got married instead. I was the luckiest man in this whole universe.