The Substitute Bride

The Substitute Bride

There is simply no substitute for hard work when it
comes to achieving success.
-Heather Bresch
THE TABLOID:
The Sicilian Royalty
They said that some people need to find their destiny.
Some were born to it, and the Fiorenza sisters were
one of them. If Sicily had royal family it will be them.
Since Laila Fiorenza was still young her father
groomed her to be the perfect daughter a Sicilian
father could be proud of. While her twin sister, Leila
Fiorenza, refused to grow up as her powerful father
had wanted. She rebel to be a good Sicilian girl and
spend years as the Sicilian tabloid’s favorite darling
with her wild ways.
But she cannot escape her destiny at all. The
powerful patriarch had arranged her wedding to a
man of his choosing. Now the time has arrived for
Leila Fiorenza to honor the agreement and marry the
man she never laid eyes before.
However, once again the rebel daughter had runaway
refusing to do her father’s bidding. Leila’s
whereabouts are unknown to everyone including to
her dutiful twin sister. It is a common knowledge that
a Sicilian never breaks his promise. So when his
vagabond daughter had run off again Cesare Fiorenza
told his other daughter to step into the role of her
twin to meet Leila’s intended groom and pretend to be
her twin until she is located.
Just how far this obedient daughter will do just to
please her father…?
Laila Fiorenza’s POV
It’s not every day that my father, Cesare Fiorenza,
called me into the most formal library of our
century old palatial home for a chat. What does he
wants to summon me here? I knocked on the thick
wooden door to find out.
“Come in,” Said the commanding voice in the old
Sicilian dialect.
I straightened my chaste black dress before I let
myself entered the chamber where my father had
been entertaining his visitors. Either to impress
them with our family’s wealth—or to intimidate
them, I am not really sure which of the two. “You
wish to talk to me, Patri?” I asked in the same
dialect.
“Sit down, me fighia.”
I took one of the leather seats that directly
opposite to my father desk and look into the
infamous cold green-eyes of the Fiorenza for many
centuries. The same color as mine and my twin
sister. I sat regally as if there was a fireplace poker
stick inserted on my spine, the proper way for a
woman to sit according to my etiquette teacher.
“I want you to come in New York and pretend to be
your sister.” My father had announced without
preamble, as if it was the most logical thing in the
world.
To pretend as my twin sister.
What’s going on here?
“Pardon, Patri?” I will not be more surprise if my
father said that I could travel to the moon.
Pretend to be Leila?
“Why would I need to pretend to be Leila, Patri?”
My father leaned back in his chair—or his throne as
my twin and I privately called it and studied me,
probably thinking whether he would tell the truth or
not. I think he decide for the truth. “You see, your
vagabond sister had runway again after I told her
that now is the time to honor the promise I made
with an old friend of mine for Leila and his son to
marry.” I frowned. I always knew that my father will be the
one who will choose whom my sister and I should
marry in the future. I am not aware that he already
found one for Leila.
Only last month I nearly married the powerful Marco
Orsini but thank goodness the Italian man turned
out to be in love with someone else. I managed to
escape that loveless marriage. “Why not wait till
you locate Leila, Patri?”
Cold green-eyes flashed before me. “A Sicilian
never breaks his promise, Laila. It is not a
permanent arrangement, girl. You only have to
pretend to be Leila until I know her whereabouts.”
Just like I thought he hadn’t forgive me yet about
my refusal of marriage to the powerful Marco
Orsini. My father doesn’t forget and he certainly
doesn’t forgive. “But you are deceiving that man,
papa.”
“Address me in Sicilian, girl.” My father reprimanded
me with my slip of tongue in calling him ‘papa’.
I flinched at the harsh way my father chastised me.
“I’m sorry, Patri.”
“And do not argue with me now, Laila.” The
irritation was visible in his wintry green-eyes. “A
good Sicilian daughter never questions her father’s
decision. Now go, pack your things you’re going to
New York first thing in the morning. Leila’s fiancé
will be waiting for you at the airport.”
“Yes, Patri. ”
Just like that I am dismissed.
Just like that I am going to New York.
And just like that my world is probably about to
change…
“Laila…?”
I look up from the bed where I was busy arranging
my clothes for my sudden flight to New York the
first thing tomorrow. My heart ached at the sight of
Rafaelle Moretti on my door way looking somewhat
troubled.
“May I have a word with you, Laila?”
“Leave us for a moment, Gia.” I told the maid who
helped me to pack my things.
Once the young maid left the room without a word
Rafe entered my bed chamber slowly but keep the
door open. It’s a custom on this household that my
patri had install that I cannot be on the room with
only a man in my company on a closed door.
Even if, the man in question was a long time friend
of mine and my patri’s favored godson.
“What do you wish to talk about, Rafe?” I asked
sitting at the foot of my bed regally. I looked at
him, putting on my memory his features this last
moment before I could see him again. It might take
months before I could see his handsome face
again.
“I heard that Cesare is sending you off to America
tomorrow morning.” He said almost close to
whisper I restraint myself to hear it.
“Yes, that’s correct.” I answered with a sigh. Right
now, he was standing few feet away from me. My
dearest love. I am forever in love with him since our
childhood years.
“Why he is sending you to America all of a sudden?”
His dark eyes full of anguished. “When all of your
life he refused you to be out of his sight?”
I am weighing if I will tell him the truth. Patri might
never appreciate it if I told him the whole story
about my sudden trip in New York.
“I cannot tell you about it.” I looked away from his
gaze. “I’m sorry, Rafe.”
“You can trust me, Laila.” He said from where he’s
standing. “I can keep a secret, cara mia .”
I took a deep breath. It was the first time that Rafe
ever use endearments to me. It feels so good to
hear. It feels like he also loves me. But I might just
deluding myself here.
He looked at me expectantly. He knew I will never
keep a secret to him. He’s my closest confidant in
this strict world I breathe in. So I gave up I decide
to tell him the truth even if I will have to face the
wrath of patri because of this.
“The truth is…” I looked at his handsome with a sad
smile in my face. “…you see, Rafe. Patri told Leila
that she’s marrying this Greek businessman—an
arrange marriage put together by patri and his
friend—”
“What does that anything to do with you?”
I shrugged as if it’s not that important. “Well, it
seems that Leila had once again runaway
somewhere upon hearing that she’s marrying this
complete stranger.” Thinking only week ago my
sister comes home now her location was already
unknown to everyone. The rebel Leila she always
defy our father’s wishes. I admired her for that. If
only I could do the same. “Now patri wants me to
pretend to be Leila and meet her intended groom
until she is located.”
Disbelief showed in his beautiful eyes. He stunned
me when he suddenly sat beside me on the bed and
grabbed my hand. “You cannot do that! You might
find yourself living with Leila’s fiancé. I will not let
that happen. I will talk to Cesare.”
I gazed at him in horror. “You cannot talk to patri .
Everything was settled now. You cannot change my
father’s mind, Rafe.” I feigned a smile. “For all we
know. It will only take days before patri’s men
could locate Leila.”
“I will find Leila myself.” Rafe muttered with
conviction on his voice



One thought on “The Substitute Bride” by Asu Born To Winn (@HolyBoy)

  1. namdi (@namdi)

    Hmm! nice plot. The way you wrote it, not nice. Sincerely, eh, the errors plenty! Tense issues topped the league.

    After writing, try to edit your work, more times than once. Also, try to space the paragraphs.

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