3 - When strength fails

"Tony, the priest is waiting," Isaac tapped him for the umpteenth time before he came out of his trance. He was deflated and lost the courage to do this. One moment, he was going to marry the love of his life and the next moment, he was getting married to a stranger. It wasn't how he imagined his life with his future wife. He tried to put up a good show but the pain was simply hard to miss. He was broken.

The auditorium had blown up in murmurs and not only was Abigail's palms sweaty but her stockings felt wet from the nervous heat christening her. Her body seemed to not feel the low temperature of the air-conditioner anymore. She couldn't meet the mocking eyes around her, bowing her head slightly in embarrassment. She never wanted this but she couldn't watch her father die. A burst of mocking chuckle closed up on her, sucking the only strength she had left. Not having enough energy after being malnourished for a long time, she felt weak. 

How could she not have known that her stepmother and sisters would be there? Her stepsisters didn't stop giggling, attracting the attention of an elegant woman, appearing before them. Her lips were stretched in a thin smile but her eyes carried disgust.

"The invite was for your mother. Your names weren't included." Instantly, tall scary bodyguards appeared, hauling them out of the top of the art decorated hall. Their mother could do nothing. Ivy, the current President of the Wrights empire was well known as the no-nonsense woman. She wasn't overly soft on her son either. 

The sweet angel turned into a confident, daring and sophisticated woman when she lost her husband after only five years of marriage, taking up the company on her shoulders. If she remarried, the company would have transferred to the Woods family, making her live without accepting the prominent men asking her hand in marriage. It was all a sacrifice she made for her son.

For this reason, she exercised great authority. She walked to her son and whispered firmly, "I have done what any mother would and kept the family fortune for you. You can hand it over to the Woods family if you abhor her that much." She was indifferent, her tone biting. After that, she said no more, holding Abigail by the wrist and about to help her out of the hall.

"Wait!" Alas, Tony spoke and the hall went dead silent. He walked up to Abigail, taking her hand from his mother and facing the priest, making him repeat the vow and this time, the response was instantaneous, "I do." It attracted both cheers and hateful murmurs. The Woods family were so confident that they were going to take over the Wrights empire this time but their expectations were wiping from their faces.

The ball was now in Abigail's court. A while ago, she was concerned about the shame of being rejected at the altar. Now, she was nervous when their eyes met, her heart stood still. His lips held a small smile but his gaze was a hollow phase. The darkness, loathe and pain, was something only she saw but standing for so long had already drained her, making her uneasy and slightly dizzy. "I....I....I," Her voice shook before finally settling, "I do."

A blanket of shame covered the haters, especially the Woods family members. The media began taking pictures instantly and when it was time to kiss the bride, Tony only leaned close but his lips never touched hers. 

Abigail was grateful. She didn't hate Tony but she felt lost in everything. He was different from the man she once saw on TV.  Then, he had a beautiful smile that made girls drool. She wasn't opportune to even watch tv and had seen him in passing when serving her stepmother her supper. 

She can't think of spending the rest of her life with him but how possibly could she change him? Well, thinking about it now, she never even had the image of an ideal man in mind. It wasn't in her plans, fearing she might die at childbirth like her mother and leave her child to suffer. At least, that's what her father told her. That her mother died during childbirth.

With this notion in mind, she never dreamt of spending her life with any man. Her only passion was to see her father well, be a top-notch florist, then she could begin her revenge.

Ivy had never had a female child, taking a keen interest in Abigail from the first time she saw her. That day at the office when Abigail picked the cheque, Tony was there but she didn't see him. She wasn't even interested in the first place like other girls. Since then, Ivy never got her out of her mind. She knew that Tony wouldn't like her but she also thought she would be the best woman for him. 

It was expected that someone who had a high taste in women would be more concerned with appearance but Abigail was just suffering from malnutrition. Luckily, he couldn't even see it due to the makeup and long lace sleeves.  She never saw her biological mother, suffering in the hands of her stepmother for eight years when her father felt that she needed a mother. Who knew that he was digging his grave when he remarried. Ivy was determined to ensure she was well taken care of, seeing how weak, fatigued, irritable and dizzy she was, she hastened the reception, making Abigail sit through it most times. It was easy because Abigail never had any friends, to begin with. Her best friend had left abroad two years ago to studymedicine.

It was an open secret that Tony had just been heartbroken and wasn't in love with his bride. Therefore people wished for it to end. Their expectations had been soiled after hearing the rumour which was proven to be true. The name on the invitation wasn't the name mentioned at the point of exchanging vows. When it was time for the bride and groom's exit, no one raised the question about their honeymoon. Tomorrow was going to be Tony's inauguration day and they were planning towards it. 

As soon as they entered the limousine, Tony widened the gap between them. Abigail was just grateful that it was over and she didn't have to face that crowd but couldn't tell if her discomfort was a result of her shyness or dizziness. Also, Ivy's car was behind them, which gave her some form of aspiration.

Enduring it and trying to be strong, she didn't expect her newly wedded husband to vent his displeasure instantly. "I won't mince words. I don't like you and I hope you stay out of my way," Tony spat out, disdain lacing his tone.

Abigail quivered slightly. She opened her mouth and instantly shut it. The gap between them was too wide but right now, her stomach was churning and she couldn't tell if it was as a result of the champagne she tasted, the cake or the food. The lavish interior of the limousine couldn't appeal to her due to the discomfort she felt and she couldn't seem to give thought to Tony's mindless words.

Tony felt somewhat irritable when he got no response. Before he could speak again, the limo had pulled over and so had Ivy's Bentley.

They arrived in an exquisite villa and Abigail was relinquished. Tony got down and didn't wait for the driver to open the door for them. Before he moved further away, his eyes caught Ivy's ferocious glare. Naturally, the driver was going to open the door for the madam when he walked in long strides, reaching there timely. "Off you go, I'll take care of it." The driver nodded and stood aside while Tony opened the door.

Abigail stepped out of the car but this time, she wasn't able to put it together as usual. Her feet wobbled, her eyes blackened, she felt light and passed out but before losing her balance, she was caught in a strong arm. Ivy was there in a blink. 

"Get her to the room and turn on the heater. The cold isn't good for her." She was exasperated, running after Tony while dialling the doctor's number. She intended to keep Abigails' condition secret and didn't want to take her to the hospital. Some media reps were still lurking around.

Due to his mother's presence, Tony was reluctantly taking Abigail to his room when Ivy objected. "I've already prepared the room next to yours. It won't be good if she is disturbed."

Tony was elated. He didn't want Abigail in his room but he couldn't help feeling a tinge that his mother was hiding something. He had never seen his mother so nervous to the point where she shook. Ivy always had control, no matter the situation yet, she was so nervous even after calling the doctor.

The maids must have misread the situation, breaking into hideous chuckles at the sight of Abigail in Tonys' arms. It looked romantic but was far from that. As soon as Tony laid Abigail gently on the Queen size bed in the room next to his, Ivy shoved him out, "It's alright, I'll take care of her." 

Tony couldn't help being more suspicious. "Mum, tell me the truth, what is wrong with her?" He asked directly, his gaze questioning and leaving no room for lies.

Comments (5)
goodnovel comment avatar
therese singit
Unselfish daughter who does everything for his father’s welfare
goodnovel comment avatar
Rose SB
Well? What’s wrong with her?
goodnovel comment avatar
Rose SB
Well, I learn something new everyday. Never heard the term “ball in” one “cot.” Being American from the US is always been ball in one’s court.

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