5. OFFER FROM RICHARD.

After an hour of travelling on a local bus, Amelia finally reached home.

All the way going back, she was thinking about her life.. her incomplete and miserable life. Every night she prays to God, that some miracle happens and she will get rid of this melancholic and sorrowful life.

Amelia was completely heartbroken and a lost soul. By a miracle, she doesn't mean a man will come and take away all the pain from her life but she and her mother will live a happy life without her father.

Amelia dreamt of a man, mature and handsome.. intelligent enough to handle her. But she cannot leave her mother like this.

Her ideal definition of a man was; someone who won't care that she's incapable of sitting still at home or not educated, someone who realizes that half of the decisions she makes are usually the ones she regrets, and she has the right to overreact at any given moment. She wants someone who knows how completely insane she is and he wouldn't want her any other way.

She doesn't want someone who promises stars and the moon, she wants someone who promises to lay on the grass and watch them with her.

A man who is not shy to speak his mind, who doesn't apologize for his feelings or desires, a man who does have a witty sense of humour, who has integrity and character, well balanced, confident, courageous, detail-oriented, committed and faithful, he says what he means and he means what he says.

Is this too much to ask? After all this suffering she deserves this kind of man, doesn't she?

Snapping back from the moment, when the bus stopped near her house street, she stepped out of the bus and walked and walked.

Through the fall, the only problem at night was the blackness, some nights even the stars had been hidden behind a wall of foreboding cloud. It would be a cold moonless night. The sky was dark and low, the air so chilled that it hurt to breathe.

She has always loved the wind, for it comes to her so boldly, touches her skin. In coldness, it rouses her to wakefulness, an alertness that lets her savour the moments in dryness and rain just the same. In soft breezes, it is finer than silk, smoother than water.

She remembered what her mother wrote in her poetry...

'We are the fireworks in this velvet dark, the blaze that dares to light up the night.'

The door creaked open, Amelia's eyes searching for her father as she sneaked into her house, late at this hour of midnight.

When the path was clear and she heard the loud snoring of her father, she went further in. While she was in her tiptoes with stealthy footsteps, she took a quick look at her father who was sleeping on the kitchen floor.

Amelia went into her mother's room and locked the door from inside.

"Mother...mother..." she whispered in a shallow tone, trying to wake her mother up.

Her mother got startled and got up from sleep immediately, giving her a sign in fidgety.

"Relax, mother. It's me..." Amelia assured and calmed her.

The mother leaned back on the bed smelling something delicious.

"Oh, look I bring pasta for you.." she opened the Tupper ware and with a plastic fork, she made a bite for her to eat. Amelia fed her mother with her own hands.

"Is it delicious?" she asked, a ghost of a smile touched her lips.

Her mother nodded, then wrote something in the notebook to which Amelia gave a broad smile whispering, "Yes, mother. The performance was good. All of them applauded for me."

Her eyes of her mother twinkled pleasantly. She was proud of her daughter.

When Amelia was six years old, she told her mother that she wants to learn piano and her mother, with the help of the widow neighbour, who was sweet and helping towards them.. helped them.

She got Amelia's admission at a small piano school and this way Amelia learned the piano and she's been practising at Henry's cafe.. later when Henry offered her a job, she without any hesitation accepted.

Amelia was 21 now, she's been working with Henry when she was thirteen.

Her father had no idea about this job of hers. If he has, he will take all the money from her and spend it on the bottles of cheap whiskeys.

Amelia was lucky in a way that her father sometimes pass out in the evening and at night he never wakes up.. not even to pee.

The next morning, when he was having his drink, the door on the knock made him startled.

As he opened the door, a friend of his was smiling at him.

"Richard?" he asked astonished.

After both of them got seated, he asked him the reason for the visit.

"Why? Can't I visit my best friend?" Richard asked, his eyes searching for Amelia and she intentionally did not walk downstairs.

"Oh, yes, yes. You can." nodded the drunk man.

"By the way... I have an offer for you." Richard spoke in an amused tone.

Rowan knitted his brows in confusion, put his glass down on the table and asked, "What offer?"

"Some men.. wealthy.. want a girl.. so I was probably thinking about..." as Richard was saying all this, he gave a hint to Rowan in this way he got silent while Rowan completed the sentence by saying, "Amelia..."

For a second, there was silence.. none of them uttered a word, then after a slight pause Rowan spoke, "How much money?"

Amelia, from upstairs when overhearing the conversation going on down, and she heard that too.

Her eyes bulged out, she was in a trance, her body started shaking.

Her father wants to.... sell her?

Just like that? She is his daughter and for the small or some amount of money he's ready to sell her to other men?

Oh my God!

she put a hand on her mouth, not believing what she heard.

Another second and she ran at her mother and buried her head on her mother's lap.

"Mother..." she whimpered with heavy tears in her eyes.

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