Chapter 4 : Débutant

As expected from my father my birthday is like one of the Queen’s banquets. Among the families and relatives that I really don’t know were my father’s business associates and their sons of course. This début will be meaningless for my father if I would not end up with a great offer. Having a very hard time with my elaborate gown as I been tagged along by my father from one party of old businessmen to another, introducing me to their sons and talking about the stocks and their business not really paying close attention to me. As I try to sneak away from the senseless chatter I found myself being hauled into another set of old men. “Merde! – damn.” I muttered under my breath. “Just smile and nod sweetie.” Jolted by a familiar deep husky male voice, I turn around and I saw the devil’s smile and my best friend standing before me. I politely excused myself from my group trying very hard to contain my excitement as I dragged the two outside. I took them to my rose garden, my Blue Rose garden which I’ve spent practically every free time that I am away from father. “Claudette! Alec! ” I almost shrieked as I hugged both of them. I thought you guys wouldn’t come, I thought you both forgot my birthday.” teary eyed I held them both. Then I composed myself and shot them questions after questions. “When did you arrived?”, “Why did you not even call or emailed me?”, “‘How are you two now?” ,”How was the Caribbean cruise?”, “So when is the wedding date?”, “Don’t tell me Claudette you’re pregnant already?” …I wanna be the first to know, the maid of honor and the godmother of your first child, you don’t know how happy I am right this minute, and I can’t even seem to stop talking.” We all laughed, Alec was the one who talked first, “I thought you won’t stop cheri! Sit down Mademoiselle first we came here to greet you a very happy 18th birthday, and of course, Claudette do you mind?” Claudette took my hand and said, ” We would like you to be our maid of honor four months from now, we will have our wedding in London.” I embraced Claudette as I looked at Alec and said, “I’d be honored you silly. But you both have to promise me one thing, no match-making please, I’ve been dealing with that for a month now, since I came back from London daddy kept me in tow in every business meeting and luncheons he had, introducing me into the business world and into countless husband candidates, and I am very sick and tired of it. Even tonight , my very own birthday turned into a grand match-making party.” Claudette took my hand and said earnestly, “You poor thing, I know your father only wanted what’s best for you.” I suddenly turned to Alec and glared at him, “I was expecting for a god-child as soon as you both arrived from that cruise, you disappoint me Monsieur Mowatt.” Alec laughed and stated mockingly, ” I beg your pardon madame Blanc, you sound like a grandmother eager for a grandchild, sorry to ruin your fantasy missy but we both agreed that we will wait for another year before we start our family.” we were chatting happily when the butler interrupted us, “Mademoiselle Blanc, forgive my rudeness but Monsieur Blanc request your presence in the hall.” I gave a disgusted face and told Alec and Claudette that I will have my little villa ready for them and that they should stay with me for rest of your trip.”I want to see photos and hear more of your stories tomorrow, we’ll have brunch by the garden.”  With that I left instructions with the butler for their luggage and food. As I went inside I immediately put on my façade, my mask, the polite, aristocratic figure of Valerie Blanc, that matches everyone inside.

It’s almost midnight and I was hoping to go back to my quarters, when I the last guest arrived. It was the son of the business tycoon daddy met in New York a couple of months ago, “Monsieur Charles Austen Graham” the butler announced. He strode gracefully towards me, kissed my hand and led me in the middle of the ballroom, instantly the orchestra played a tune where we danced the Argentine Tango. He led me with confidence and clear, precise execution, every step we made was synchronized. The manliness, the arrogance and the strength overflowed as I flawlessly swayed and turned, it was like being hypnotized by the music and by his radiance, he was like the movie actor Brad Pitt in the persona of Lestat, The Interview with the Vampire. The music ended with a powerful bang and as we walked towards my father who was aghast by what he saw if it wasn’t for the Monsieur I definitely would receive a piece of his mind. “Don’t worry about your father my dearest Valerie, I’ll deal with him. You danced so well I bet it was all thanks to your nightly escapade at The Crypt.” Then he laughed mockingly as he ushered me back to my father’s side. “That was quite a spectacle mademoiselle you may excuse yourself for the night, I will see you tomorrow at breakfast.” my father dismissed me with that, but to my surprise Monsieur Graham interrupted my leave with a shocking proposal, “Marry me and you can do whatever you wish Mademoiselle Blanc. Monsieur Blanc you know that I do not care about your empire for I have my own, established and continuously expanding. All I wish is to marry your lovely daughter and see her happy.” His hand snapped in the air and suddenly a gentleman brought a small box, where a big diamond ring glistened in front of me, he inserted the ring in my finger ” I will be back tomorrow night to discuss the details of the wedding but I must take my leave now, I have business to attend to in the morning. I bid you bonne nuit Mademoiselle Blanc.” He kissed my hand gently and bowed at my father then left us both speechless. Now that was a spectacle, the chattered started the minute Monsieur Graham left and a continuous “Congratulations” echoed across the ballroom and one by one the guests left leaving me still in shock. ” I better hurry back to my villa and tell Claudette what happened, I’m so confused. I’m engaged to a man I know nothing of and danced the most passionate and powerful Argentine Tango ever.” I started running towards the Blue Rose garden where a hidden path leads to my villa.

I saw Claudette with Alec sitting next to each other at my favorite wooden swing in the porch, their smiles vanished as they saw how miserable and disturbed I looked. “What happened in there sweetie you look distraught?” Alec reached his hand for mine and seated me in between them. “You wouldn’t believe what happened.” I raised my hand and showed them my engagement ring. “I danced the Argentine tango with a certain Monsieur Graham of New York, got proposed in front of everyone, got engaged without me answering yet and he left as soon as he placed this ring in my finger. I did not get the chance to decline, to get to ask why and how he knew about my trip to The Crypt and a lot of things in between. I’m so confused, I want to pack my bags and return to London with you both.” Claudette and Alec were now laughing softly, “I guess all we need to do now is to celebrate your birthday and instant engagement and plan what our next step is.” Alec lead us two inside and pour wine as Claudette and I sat comfortable in the den. My eyes caught a glimpse on Alec’s and a disturbing look and grin was across his face, the devil’s grin again, what’s with him all of a sudden? I thought to myself. We stayed up till 3am, talking about the endless possibilities on how my so-called fiancé found out ‘The Crypt” and what will I do when I see him again. My birthday ended the minute Monsieur Charles Austen Graham left and another chapter of my life starts to unfold as I face a new day…

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childhood crush

I recently found out that an elementary classmate of mine had a crush on me. It’s a real shocker! All those years I thought I was the ugly duckling of the class… hahaha who are you kidding! it’s not that important now. I don’t think of things like such. He is now a friend in my social site, we chat if we get the chance. Earlier this day he asked me how to get to as specific place, a company wherein he will have his interview the next day…well, since I’m in front of my PC I can Google the map in seconds. Gave him the instructions and even sent him the link. All of a sudden he asked me to meet up after the job interview and have dinner at my place. When I asked why, He replied “It’s important in life to be in contact/connection with old friends before moving on with life”. Gosh, who are you kidding!!!!! It’s such a lousy excuse.