They say storms are only temporary. But the lives they cross never remain the same. You either perish, or grow so inured even the mighty storm gets enamoured of you.
I blew out a long sigh and took a turn to park my dad's car in our front yard. Another day of job hunting went in vain. My previous workplace was shut down due to bankruptcy, and the new places didn't want an employee with an experience of less than a year. Now if they wouldn't let me have the opportunity how was I supposed to get experience?
My parents ran a bakery shop. After my dad had an accident while working in the King's factory as a mechanical engineer, he couldn't work anymore, and they started this small business, but it wasn't enough. So I needed a job to support them.
My feet slammed on the brakes as a black limo, parked in our driveway, caught my eye. My brows furrowed, and I racked my brain for any possible relative who rode a limo, but nah, none did. Curiosity gnawed at my tummy, and I parked the car by the side of the road, ignoring the protests of our aged neighbor. Speeding inside the house, I tip-toed near the drawing room and peeked from behind the door frame.
Oh, blast manners! The girl needa know!
A man in a white suit sat in the head sofa, the gray roots of his hair and beard beginning to peek. “Let's cut to the chase, shall we, Joseph?” he said, authority lacing his tone.
“Err... sure, Mr. King, sir,” dad replied, sitting across from him accompanied by mom.
Mr. King? As in Mr. Bryan William King? The billionaire businessman and dad's former boss? But what was he doing here?
“Splendid! I want your daughter as my daughter-in-law.”
The gaps in my parents' mouths could fit a whale. As for mine, well, that whale with its baby and baby's dad, and many more babies could fit, and they wouldn't even have to squirm.
I know, I know I exaggerated, but that's how it actually felt.
The Kings wanted me as their daughter-in-law for their son Hunter William King, the most eligible, most handsome bachelor of New York? But why me when there were so many prettier women on earth dying to be his? Heck, he could even marry a princess.
Mr. King gave a laugh at seeing their expressions. “Now, now, no need to give me that look, Joseph. I just want a fair, decent girl to be our daughter-in-law, not one of those-,” his face contorted into a grimace, “-gold-diggers my son dates.”
“B-but sir... Y-your son... He doesn't really have a good reput- oomph!” A nudge from mom stopped dad from completing the sentence.
“Oh, come on, Josephine! All this time we'd been acquaintances, wouldn't you keep my wish?” His lips stretched into a sweet smile, but his eyes glinted with tacit demand.
For the next few minutes, Mr. King kept pestering dad. It seemed he made up his mind and wouldn't take 'no' for an answer.
My stretched brows creased to a frown. The reason he told about choosing me didn't seem harmful, however, the uneasiness in the pit of my stomach didn't talk the same. Marriage was a big step of someone's life, and I needed to think.
Inhaling deep, I sauntered inside. “I appreciate your proposal, Mr. King, but I need time.”
All heads turned towards me. With a sweet smile on his face, Mr. King got up, and so did my parents with concerned faces.
“You have a beautiful daughter, Joseph and intelligent too,” he stated striding towards me, power radiating off of him. “I hope you'll make the right decision, darling.”
Then he was gone.
To be married to Hunter King would be like a dream come true for most girls including me, but getting married like this was never my plan. What about my responsibilities? I couldn't just leave my parents to be on their own when they needed me the most. I had always wanted to build my own identity, have a decent job, a bigger home and most definitely, a bigger shop where my mom could bake as much as she wanted, and dad could mess the batters up trying to help without any worry.
I looked at my parents; a twain of hesitant frowns latched on their foreheads.
What if I said no?
In the next few days, I got my answer.