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Chapter 4

  • AMELIA'S POV
  • "Yes. Yes, I will need the documents tomorrow." Damian's voice came floating out of the living room and I strolled to him, and saw that he was still on the phone. Jeez!
  • Did the man never take a break from work? Surely, his staff could hold the forte, especially after considering the fact that it was the night of his wedding and obviously his honeymoon.
  • Even though our marriage was not real, I expected him to at least take a break. Just as I was about to leave, he ended the call so I decided to join him on the sofa.
  • He turned towards me immediately, his brows raised. "Did you want something?" he asked.
  • I swallowed, wondering where to start. His tone was somewhat cold.
  • "Actually, I was hoping that we could talk... you know, get to know each other." I snuck a glance at him from under my lashes and flushed when I saw his steel grey eyes staring at me fiercely. That gaze unsettled me, had me stumbling to get the words out. "Seeing as we just got married and it's our honeymoon and all that... it's a good idea for us to er-..."
  • I paused, groped for ways to express myself.
  • "Let me get this straight. You're referring to us bonding, perhaps doing what regular married people do. Right?"
  • I bit my lip. "More or less... Yes."
  • "I see. Perhaps I wasn't clear when I told you about the terms of the contract. Now please listen, Amelia. This is not a real marriage. See our union as business transaction, which is what it is. I want and expect no emotional connection between us. We will just have to live under the same roof but we don't even have to see each other everyday. What I expect is for you to sometimes accompany me to some rather tedious business dinners as my wife. That's all. You are free to do whatever you want with the rest of your time. Oh, and er- we will be sleeping in different rooms. Your room is the first door on your right after you climb the stairs. If you don't like it, tell the housekeeper. She'll show you to another." He paused. "Are my quite clear now?"
  • I forced myself to meet his eyes. "Very clear."
  • He nodded. "Good. If you'll excuse me, I have some rather urgent business matters to attend to. Have a good night."
  • I clenched my fists to stop the urge to hurl one of the sofa pillows at his head as he walked away. A miserable, hollow feeling began to creep up my chest.
  • He was right: our marriage was simply just for show. I had to put that in my mind and live my life the best way. But why was I so bothered that he wouldn’t bond with me?
  • A minute later, I shuffled to my room, turned off the lights and curled up in a fetal position on the bed. I lay awake for a long time in the dark, sad and trying to reconcile myself to the fact that my marriage to Damian was not going to be hearts and flowers.
  • “It’s just strictly business,” I mustered to myself before dozing off to sleep.
  • *************************
  • I woke up at the crack of dawn, showered, got dressed, had breakfast and then sat in my room, moping. I didn't know what to do with myself. The house was so big and I wondered how I would get through the days, weeks and months ahead.
  • A knock sounded at my bedroom door.
  • "Come in," I said.
  • Damian came in. He was dressed in an immaculate grey suit, white shirt and grey tie. He looked exotic and I flushed slightly.
  • "Hi," I flashed him a smile.
  • "Hi." He gave me an appraising look. "Plan on staying in here all day?”
  • I shrugged. "I don't know. Maybe I'll see something on the television later," I said vaguely.
  • "Take my advice. Instead of staying in this house all day, go out and spend some of my money. I have lots of it." He took steps closer to me and dropped a credit card on the table. "Buy anything you want. I'm off to the office."
  • Without another word, he turned on his heel and left. I fingered the credit card he left and after several minutes of thinking, I decided to go shopping.
  • However, I was still shocked that he had given me his credit card. Noah had never done that in our two years of marriage.
  • I drove to MagniShop, a classy shopping mall I had never been to before. I was welcomed gracefully and I wondered if it had anything to do with being Damian’s wife.
  • I went straight to the clothing aisle, browsed through pricey clothes and picked anyone that took my fancy. Having had enough of clothes, I turned the corner to the section for jewelry and almost bumped right into Noah. I froze, as did he. Seeing him again sent a searing pain through my heart. I looked away at once and made as if to pass him.
  • "Amelia," he barked. "Where the hell do you think you're going?"
  • I walked on. He grabbed me by the shoulder and spun me around to face him.
  • "What the hell, Noah!" I hissed. "Have you lost your mind?"
  • Noah's eyes flashed angrily. "Don't you dare walk away from me when I'm talking to you. Why are you even here?"
  • I scoffed. "What do people do in shopping malls?"
  • He grabbed the clothes slung over my arm. "Go shop somewhere else."
  • "Noah!" I cried, outraged.
  • I attempted to take back the clothes. He drew his arm back and yelled in my face. "Are you bloody deaf? I said beat it!"
  • "No. I won't. You can't-"
  • "I can and I will. I am one of the partners of this mall and I have the right to send out undeserving customers like you. Now leave before I call security to throw you out!”
  • I started to say something, but stopped. Noah's outburst had already drawn a circle of onlookers. I hesitated, then stormed out with my head held high.
  • "That's right. Get out and never come back," he yelled after me.
  • Outside, I fumed. I had never been as embarrassed like that in my entire life. I was so furious that my hands were shaking when I dialed Damian's number. He was the only one who could solve my problem with Noah and put him in his place.
  • "Yes?" he answered curtly.
  • "I took your advice and went shopping. I ran into Noah at the mall. He- he threw me out. He said he’s one of the partners in the mall.” I told him, my breath rising and falling.
  • "I see. What mall is that?"
  • “MagniShop.” I answered.
  • "Give me a minute. I'll call you back. Don't leave." He said, then ended the call immediately.
  • I went into my car to wait, eyeing Noah as he paraded around the mall in an attempt to taunt me. After waiting for about five minutes, I received a call from Damian. I quickly answered it, hoping he had some good news for me and he did.
  • "You're now free to do anything you want in there," he said. "I just bought the mall for you from the CEO. All partnerships including with Noah has been terminated. Any of the staff can call the head office to confirm this."
  • He hung up before I could say anything else. I stared at the phone, my mouth agape. Then the excitement hit. I could literally do anything I wanted! I approached two security guards, told them what Damian had said. They checked and confirmed it was true. With the guards flanking me, I sashayed into the mall, found Noah talking to one of the mall's staff. I tapped him on the shoulder. He turned and did a double take at the sight of me.
  • "You again!" he thundered. "I thought I told you to-"
  • "No. You are the one getting the hell out." I smiled at him sweetly, then raised my voice. "Security, throw this man out."
  • The guards immediately rounded him up and began leading him out. When Noah resisted, they grabbed his arms. He stared at them in disbelief.
  • "Get your hands off me," he shouted. "She doesn't give the orders here. Don't you know who I am? I'm your boss-"
  • "Not anymore," I interjected. His stunned look was like salve to my wounded ego. "I just bought this mall."