Even if the trumpet sounded three times in a row, Jessica was certain that Andy would not have heard anything. He seemed to be glued to the place he was standing beside his father, as he gazed with disbelief in his eyes. Her normally bold personality instantly became self conscious. The dress she had on was totally modest and good for the occasion which was nothing spectacular other than meet her father-in-law whom she should have meet long time ago. She was putting on a short gown for the first time in a very long time. The short gown was slightly above her knees, though it was not the clinging type; it was sleeveless which left her shoulders and hands bare. She suddenly felt exposed as Andy’s eyes bore into her. Noticing that they had been staring at each other for some time, she quickly moved forward, and noticed the elderly man Andy, looking at them with amused curiosity. That Andy got his height and good looks from his father was not to be denied. The man was still very attractive at his age. Andy looked a bit different from him facially and Andy wondered what his mum looked like. “Sir”, she moved forward quickly, not knowing the proper way of greeting your father-in-law. “Good evening dad” she bent to kneel down but the man held her back. “C’mon, give your father-in-law a hug” he pulled her into his arms and Jessica remembered her father. “I am so sorry sir” she said as she pulled away. “I told Andy severally that we should wait for sometime until you are back from your trip before we get married but he refused” Andy was still lost in trance and it bothered Jessica as she tried to cover up. “Do I blame him? He is a William; we grab opportunities when we see them. Frankly, if I were in his shoes, I would want to take you off the market as soon as possible because you are a rare commodity” Mr William was making her look like a product which was for sale but the funny thing is that she did not feel insulted, in fact, she felt flattered. “I always wondered where Andy got his good looks from, now I know” she smiled. The man adjusted slightly, “Well, he is a combination of his mum and I, he is one selfish boy right?” Referring to Andy as a boy was strange to Jessica’s ears. Andy was not doing anything to help her and she didn’t know if they would be able pull this farce through if he kept mute. The possibility was becoming increasingly hard. “Yes sir, he can be so selfish” she nudged Andy with her leg. “Yes, tap him, he seems to be lost in cloud nine” His father said. Jessica hadn’t thought that her father-in-law saw her. She smiled nervously. “He is always like this when I put on this gown, I don’t know why” The man laughed. “Then make sure you put it on when there is a quarrel, it might save you the stress of apologizing.” Jessica laughed and was relieved when Andy seemed to be back in their midst. “Come daughter” Andy’s dad put his hand around Jessica’s shoulders as he walked inside, leaving Andy to tag along. “Tell me about yourself” ********** ********** Andy had never been so shocked in his entire life. Jessica had landed him a heavy blow which threw away his senses. When the door had opened, he had had a mental picture of what he was expecting. He had expected a lady in a long oversized gown with long hands, never in his widest imagination did he think that she would appear the way she did. It had taken a few seconds to fully accept the fact that he was staring at Jessica. Her skin glowed under the evening light, everything about her was different. Her hair was not packed the way she used to, she packed half of the hair at the front, leaving the ones at the back to fall of their own accord. The length of the hair was more pronounced and the rich black colour called him to have a touch. Her shoulders and hands were bare before his prying eyes and it glowed like she had just moisturized them. The smoothness was so obvious and it took so much effort to take his eyes off them. He shuddered when he stared at her body. He wondered how she could effectively hide all she had beneath those God-forsaken clothes. Her waist was even slimmer than he had been imagining for weeks, he was sure that his two big hands would circle her waist perfectly. He swallowed hard, blocking his mind to the battle that was going on in him. His eyes skimmed her slim long legs till he got to her feet and almost groaned. It was too much to take in. he always knew she had a very beautiful face but now, it was striking even though she had no makeup or jewelry on. As she talked with his father, he heard nothing as he gazed at her with amazement. She was smiling widely. He couldn’t pinpoint when she ever smiled, apart from the time he had seen her at the beach with that slim guy. He was angry that she was not smiling at him, and that he was not the cause of her laughter. He struggled to hear what they were saying and could not hear anything because his mind was so preoccupied with her body. He started hearing what was being said towards the end and he received another round of torture as he walked behind them into the house. ********** ********** Jessica was surprised that she had enjoyed the evening. Andy almost could not take his eyes off her, making it difficult to concentrate on keeping up with the charade but Mr Williams was a very down to earth man, and she found herself relaxing, forgetting the pretense. When they finished eating, they went to the sitting room to relax. She was about going to sit on the single seeter when Andy pulled her to sit with him on the long couch. At first his touch shocked her, then, remembering that they were not alone, she relaxed. Andy could not keep his hands to himself, and he was becoming jealous of his father, who seemed to have the ability to make Jessica laugh. The small curved couch was small and when they sat down, they were so close to each other in a disturbing way. “You two seem like you just met yesterday. I am almost invisible” Andy’s dad murmured. “It certainly feels like yesterday” Andy said looking at Jessie who did not look at him. Mr Williams looked at them curiously. “Tell me how you two met” Jessica stopped short. “Why don’t you tell dad the story Drew?” she gave Andy a dazzling smile that turned his heart. “No, you tell him honey” he said, too distracted to think about a story. She placed her palm tenderly on his chest and his heart raced. “Oh, c’mon now, you are a better story teller”. That moment, Andy knew that whatever she wanted she would get. His dad was looking at them with curiosity. “I was sitting with Jeremy at the balcony of his house when I saw her taking a stroll. She was dressed in this disgustingly big dress that was big enough to fit into an elephant” he grinned. Jessica frowned and moved, leaving Andy’s arms. “That is the sexiest thing you ever said to me” she looked hurt. He tried to pull her back into his arms but she did not accept. “You never told me you hated my cloth. I am flattered”. “C’mon baby, those clothes do nothing to attract the opposite sex” “So what attracted you then?” It was Andy’s father that spoke. Jessica raised her eyebrow, expecting an answer. Andy swallowed and almost said ‘desire to be free from a planned marriage’ but caught himself in time. “I can’t pinpoint what it was. Maybe it is her striking face” he noticed for the first time that instead of black pupils, her pupils were a shade of dark brown. He swallowed heavily. “Or her long black midnight hair which makes my fingers itch with desire at the sight”. Andy was gazing so intently into Jessica’s eyes until she was almost fidgeting. The room suddenly seemed too suffocating as heat washed over her. Andy’s dad coughed loudly and they both jerked. “My son is in love; that is a miracle. I guess I have you to thank Jessica” Jessica almost laughed at the statement. Andy, in love with her -Jessica – it was so hilarious. Andy’s father looked at his wrist watch and stood up. “Wow, it is so late. I should go home”. Jessica felt the daughter-in-law instinct grabbing her. “Why don’t you spend the night dad, you had a long journey and must be tired.” “You are right. I am fagged out” “Let me get the room ready sir” she said and turned. It was as she arranged the bed that the implication of what she had just done dawned on her. The room she usually slept was just few steps from the guests’ room. Her father-in-law would definitely get suspicious if she was sleeping in any room apart from the masters’ bedroom with Andy. She regretted her suggestion now and tried to look for a way out. She could sneak into her room very late and wake up very early, before anyone. She groaned. After ensuring that her father-in-law was fully settled in the room, she walked into the sitting room, where Andy was. “You do know the implication of what you just did right?” Andy asked instantly. She exhaled. “It was out of my mouth before I could think but it does not change anything. I would still sleep in my room and wake up very early”. Andy shook his head. “It won’t do. If I still know my dad well, he accepted staying over so easily, meaning, he might still have doubts. He is cunning when he feels suspicious. He knows I have given up on love and won’t easily take the fact that I am in love” Andy was sure of it. Jessica thought she and Andy had a thing in common at last; they had both given up on love. “So what do you suggest?” He swallowed. “You would have to sleep with me in the masters’ bedroom” he dropped. Her eyes widened. She has been terribly aware of Andy, the last thing she needed was to stay locked up in a room with him. “You can’t be serious. We could work out a story if he discovers that we are not together. We could say that I am indisposed and needed to be alone. Something”. She searched her brain for what that ‘something’ could be. “Anything”. “It won’t work. He would know that something is fishing. I promise to be a perfect gentleman. You can take the bed while I take the floor. That is the only reasonable solution.” She looked at Andy like he was a three headed monster. “You’ve got to be kidding me”.
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