Chapter 28: Prince in disguise

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A/N: So, I listened to the song at the side - just see there - while I was typing this chapter and I burst to tears and my Mom thought I was a lunatic. So, it would probably be nice if you listen to it when you're reading as well. (;


Part I:

Positive. I have to think positive.

My insides were twisting in horror, but I did my best to ignore it as I put my bag down on one of the benches and I faintly heard Travis say, “Thanks, Mina.” A helper – I think – nodded and smiled in response and proceeded to transfer my bag beside a briefcase and a Louis Vuitton.

I took another deep breath as Travis led the way to his parents, who were now conversing lightly, glancing at our direction every now and then. Why are they looking at us like that? My stomach is now churning like crazy and I held Travis’ hand in a vice-like grip and I’m certain that one of us will have a bruise to deal with later on. He whispered in my ear, half-laughing.

“Relax. Smile. Where’s my little genius?”

“I’m right here.” I squeaked. He didn’t answer but traced patterns on my hand with his thumb and I became calmer with every caress. Tried my best to put on a demure smile on my face as we approached them and in no time, we’re face to face.

“Hi, Mom.” Without letting go of my hand, Travis stepped forward and kissed his mother tenderly on the cheek and hugged her with one arm. As he pulled back, I saw the love between them and there’s no denying that they go along really well. Adding to my surprise was the accessory swinging on her neck, which became still and nestled comfortably on the base of her throat.

I only have to wonder for three seconds before the memory from last Wednesday came back to my mind with surprising detail; we were shopping for the school dance – me, Cassie and the others – when Travis popped in the shop. He bought the necklace I’m seeing right now. He bought it for his mother! And to think we even considered Athena.

“Dad.” Travis gave his father a brief hug and stepped back, smiling at me. “Mom, Dad, this is Avery. Beautiful, isn’t she?”


My knees were shaking and I forced my smile to look as natural as possible as Travis eased me forward with a soft hand on my waist. “Good morning Mr. and Mrs. Warner. It’s nice to meet you.” I sounded tragically nervous and I probably look like a trembling penguin before a shark. Suddenly, Mrs. Warner laughed and stepped forward, rubbing my shoulders.

“You don’t have to looks so scared, Avery. We won’t hurt you.” She flashed a smile at me that exposed both of her dimples and her brown eyes glistened. She looks so much like her son.

“Oh, you look so pretty. I knew my Travis won’t disappoint. Right, Anthony?” Eyes were drawn to the rock-hard features of Anthony Warner, who looked at me for full three seconds and moved his gaze towards his son. When he faced me again, his expression softened for a fraction and he offered his hand, “Delighted to meet you, Avery.” He said in a deep voice.

In a hazy daze, I shook his hand, my eyes meeting his very blue ones. His eyes are very much like Travis’ but you can see that he uses it more to intimidate, rather than charm. But my mind was constantly repeating, I’m shaking hands with the president of Gedi Institute, the most successful company in the finances…

My hand fell limply to my side as I said, “Thank you, sir.”

“Don’t call him ‘sir!” Carolyn Warner laughed, “You can call him Dad and call me Mom!” she smiled happily.

Oh my God.

My heart slammed to my ribcage and my eyes widened in shock. “R-really?” Travis laughed on my side and his father scowled and said, “You’re scaring her, Lyn.”

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