P.S. Italic parts are
Chapter 39 –
Day 2: The Trip Mason was woken up by the strong aroma of coffee being brewed. He sat up from the hard floor and his back ached. He tried to massaged his shoulders to soothe them from pain. His neck was also in pain as he rotated his head around. Kelsey watched him in amusement and chuckled. “Didn’t I tell you last night that you are gonna get a backache in the morning?” She reminded him as he groaned in response. He still couldn’t take it when other people were right. Kelsey strolled towards him and placed the cup of coffee on the centre table. She sat on the couch and started massaging his shoulders. Mason sighed in contentment as her hands did the magic to his aching back. “Why did you sleep on the floor, anyway? You said so yourself, there’s a king size bed in the room.” She asked him. “Because…” He dragged on, trying to enjoy the massage he, for once, was getting for free. He usually had to go to a massage therapist every three months when he wasn’t too busy from work to relax and eased his body. “Because?…” Kelsey pushed on the topic. Mason took hold of her hands from his shoulders and turned around, forming an ‘X’ with his arms. “Because I wanted to sleep next to you.” He simply answered but it made Kelsey’s stomach flipped in giddiness. “Because I wanted to make sure you wouldn’t disappear from my sight.” He added. Both could feel the growing steaming tension in the room. Mason was so tempted to pull her close for a kiss but he was afraid that he would only drive her away. He knew he had to take it slow with her. Because she wasn’t just any woman, she was someone special to him and he had to treat her right. For the first time, he found himself acting like a true gentleman. “Why are you saying all these corny, cheesy lines early in the morning?” She kidded, breaking the tension between the two of them. Mason laughed and gently released her hands. “I think you just need some coffee.” She stated as she beckoned her head towards the cup of coffee she placed on the centre table. Mason took a sip of the coffee and smiled. “Thanks for the coffee, babe.” He gratefully said as he kissed her on the forehead. Before Kelsey could even respond, Mason had already left with the coffee in his hand. ~ * ~ * ~ Mason had a series of activities he had planned for the both of them the entire day. Right after breakfast, Mason dragged her to the rooftop of the hotel. To say that Kelsey was surprised was an understatement. There was a helicopter at the rooftop with a pilot inside.
They were practically ready to board. Kelsey gaped at Mason in disbelief but he only beamed at her and pulled her towards the copter. They boarded, strapped their seat belts on and placed the headphones on their ears. It was Kelsey’s very first time flying and she had mixed feelings about it. She was excited but she felt nauseous as well. She held onto the chair as the copter started ascending from the rooftop. Mason glanced at her and saw the horrific look on her face, making his smile falter. “Something wrong?” He asked her worriedly. “Are you not feeling well?” He yelled so that she could clearly hear his voice that was being muffled by the loud sound of the copter. Kelsey gulped and took a deep breath before answering. “This is my first time flying.” She admitted and wondered if he was going to laugh at how ridiculous she was being. However, Mason did the opposite. He shot her a reassuring smile and held her hand. “Don’t worry.” He told her. “Nothing’s gonna happen. You’re safe. The view will make it all worth it.” He stated as she nodded her head to inform him that she was feeling a bit better. Soon enough, they were flying over the sea and the isolated islands around the resort. Kelsey gasped as she gazed at the beautiful view she was seeing. The terrified feeling was soon washed and replaced with pure happiness and enjoyment. “It’s beautiful.” She yelled over to Mason. She screamed in excitement and pointed at everything that interested her. Mason couldn’t help but chuckle every now and then as she excitedly jumped around. From a girl who was terrified of flying for the first time, she sure didn’t look like one. He was just glad that the fear left her and she was now practically squealing and admiring everything that she saw. After a thirty minute ride of looking at the sights from the sky, they finally landed and made a quick stop to their hotel room to get changed to their swimwear. Mason announced that they were going to spend the rest of the day by the beach. Kelsey put on her sky blue two- piece bathing suit and placed a white sundress with yellow flowers on it to cover her body and placed her hair into a messy bun. She slightly opened the door of the bathroom and peeked through the small opening. Mason’s back was facing her and he was changing his shirt from the grey one he was wearing this morning to a white one. He was also wearing a black swimwear shorts that ended at the bottom of his knees.
Kelsey waited for him to finish changing so she could come out when Mason spoke up. “Do you just have a habit of watching me change?” He teased and turned around to shoot her a smirk. Kelsey gasped and fell forward as the door swung open. It was a good thing she was holding tightly on the doorknob that she didn’t fall on her face.
She quickly recovered from the little trip and straightened herself. She cleared her throat and placed her entangled her hands together at her front. “I wasn’t watching. I was waiting.” She smartly retorted and Mason sneakered. “Besides, you walked in on me the first time.” She explained, remembering the moment they had back home in the walk-in-closet when she was getting a change of clothes for the night. “Okay, okay, Mrs. King.
Don’t get all smart on me now.” He absentmindedly said but Kelsey caught on those two words. “Mrs. King?” She asked with a raised eyebrow, faltering the smile on his lips. Mason had unconsciously called her ‘Mrs. King’ and he didn’t know why. Mason stared at her, trying to come up with a good reason why those words slipped out of his mouth. When he came up with nothing, he simply shrugged his shoulders and waved her off. “Let’s go!” He said as he took his sunglasses on the nightstand and left the room, leaving an amused Kelsey. She had no clue why but she loved the idea of being called Mrs. King. ~ * ~ * ~ Mason and Kelsey spent their whole day on the beach. They rode a private ferry owned by Mason and swam in the middle of the beach. And for the first time ever, Kelsey tried to surf. They had a lot of fun the entire day to last a lifetime. Kelsey didn’t also miss Mason’s odd actions. The whole day, Mason would either hold her hand, wrap an arm around her, pull her into a hug, or randomly kiss the top of her head.
They were all sweet gestures that was causing Kelsey to be pulled in into a deeper hole that she was already in. She was afraid that by the end of the trip, everything was going to go back to normal and he would act cold towards her again. She really wished no such thing happen. She was putting her heart on the line and it was her very first time doing so. Kelsey felt the exhaustion kicked in late in the afternoon at around five o’clock. She sat on the sand with her legs pulled towards her and she had her arms laying on top of it. She tiredly placed her head on her arms that was resting on her knees and briefly closed her eyes. The next time she opened her eyes, Mason was sitting next to her, staring at the waves of the water. “Did you have fun today?” He asked as he sensed her eyes watching him. She smiled as she remembered what they did throughout the day. “Yeah, I had a lot of fun. What about you?” Mason turned his head towards her and beamed. “I had a lot of fun as well.
I’m glad we took this vacation.” He said as he unknowingly placed an arm around her. He pulled her closer against his side and rested his head on top of hers, which was resting on his chest. Kelsey didn’t bother pulling away and just enjoyed the moment. In case this was the last time they would ever get intimate, she would just enjoy every second of it. “Mason?” She spoke up. “Mhmm…”
He answered as exhaustion also sank in him. “Can I ask you a question?” Mason glanced down at her in curiosity, trying to figure out what was inside that pretty head of hers. “What is it?” He lazily replied. “You and your father…” She started and Mason already knew where the conversation was going. He didn’t interrupt her though, he let her finish her question. “What’s the issue between the two of you?” Mason didn’t know what occurred in him but he suddenly had the urge to tell her the truth. He wanted her to know and it was very unusual of him to confide to people. He was a reserved person and he was not the one who tells his problems with others. So what made Kelsey so different? he thought. “It’s okay, you don’t have to answer it. I know it’s a very personal question.” Kelsey said, interrupting his thoughts. She pulled away from him to shot him a reassuring smile that pronounced that everything was going to be alright. Mason pulled her back in and tightly placed a secure arm around her tiny body. He liked the feeling of her body against his. It made him feel satisfied and complete, feelings he had never felt before. “Victoria’s not my biological mother.” He blurted out causing Kelsey’s head to snapped up towards his face. She had a very surprised expression on her face, eyes bulging and mouth slightly agape. Mason chuckled at her adorable face and couldn’t resist but placed a soft kiss on her forehead. “You’re cute when you’re confuse.” He commented, but clearly, Kelsey was still in turmoil and had not recovered by his revelation yet. Kelsey tried wrapping the idea around her head but it really wouldn’t sink in. “Are you telling the truth? If you’re just messing with me, Mason, it’s not a good joke.” She warned him with pointed, accusing eyes. Mason’s grin turned into a small smile as he fixed his eyes on the water ahead of him. “I wish I was joking.” He said and Kelsey saw the sincerity in his tone. Was he being serious? She thought in completely and utterly confusion. She saw how Victoria and Mason were with each other. She wouldn’t even doubt one bit that they were blood related. But how could it be? A lot of question ran through Kelsey’s head and Mason could tell she wanted answers as he briefly glanced at her baffled face. Mason pulled her into an embrace once again and got comfortable. “Long story short, I’m an illegitimate child.” He announced as Kelsey listened to every word he uttered. “Dad had a one-night-stand with my mother. She used to work as a waitress in a bar and I guess my father took interest in her.” He said and continued on. “I was a mistake, I was cursed by the sin my parents had committed. And I guess I paid for their mistake pretty well.” He laughed humourlessly with a pain expression on his face as he relived the moment in his head. He hated it when people see his weak side. But with Kelsey, he didn’t feel like he needed to hide beneath his façade. Grace was walking along the streets of the suburb area towards her workplace. She worked as a housemaid for one of the wealthy houses in the neighbourhood. Since she was a single mother, she really needed to work hard to sustain the both of them and made sure her son was going to school. It was early morning and a little kid was playing on the front yard of one of the houses. A car was passing by when the ball of the kid rolled towards the road. Grace saw the little kid walked towards the road, ready to pick the ball up. The mother of the child had her back turned since she was planting a new orchid on the front lawn. Grace saw the car coming and it was meters away from hitting the little boy on the road. Out of impulse as a mother, Grace sprinted towards the boy and quickly picked him up. She jumped to the front lawn with her back hitting the grass so the kid didn’t get hurt. The car abruptly stopped when the driver saw the incident. The mother of the child came running and checked if her son was all well. The kid cried and the mother cooed him and told him that everything was going to be alright. “Are you okay?” The mother asked Grace as she squatted to her level. Grace only nodded her head and smiled at the little boy. “What’s important is that he is safe.” Grace told her. The woman gratefully smiled at her and thanked her.
The owner came out of the car and strode towards the front lawn, where Grace was still laying down on. “I’m so sorry miss, my driver mustn’t have seen the boy. Is he okay?” He asked the mother of the child. “He is fine, thanks to this kind woman.” The mother said, gesturing to Grace. The man glanced down at the woman by the ground and paled at her sight. He knew her all too well. He remembered her from that night he had been trying to forget all these years. Seven years had already passed but the sin he had committed against his wife was still fresh and forever embedded in his head. Grace’s eyes widened as the father of her child stood in front of her in a branded suit and an expensive watch. She had been trying to find him after their one night together to informed him about her pregnancy. But the stupidity in her forgot to asked him for his name. It was just a casual fling but Grace still wanted to tell him about their son. Grace attempted to stand but lost her balance as the pain surged through her ankle. Edward was quick to catch her arm, preventing her from falling. He gently placed her on the grass and checked her ankle. “I am very sorry, ma’am!” The driver apologized worriedly. “Do you need any medical help? Should we bring you to the hospital?” He asked in panic. Grace rapidly shook her head knowing that she couldn’t afford the additional bills if she went to the hospital. “No, I’m fine.” She said and shot them a reassuring smile. But Edward had a different idea. He picked her up and a little squeal escaped her mouth. “Sir, please put me down.” She awkwardly commanded him but he merely ignored her as he took giant strode towards the car. “Is your son okay? Do you want to get him check in the hospital as well?” Edward asked the mother of the child once he had deposited Grace in the car. “He’s fine, sir. My husband is coming home soon, we’ll take him then.” She told him as Edward nodded his head and climbed in the car next to Grace. “Hospital, Vince.” Edward ordered his driver and they drove in silence towards the hospital. “Sir, I’m really fine.” She spoke firmly, remembering that she would be late for work if she went to the hospital now. Not only would she get additional bills from the hospital costs, but she also wasn’t getting paid by not coming to work. “Please pull over.” She nicely asked the driver and he warily glanced over the rear mirror to see if boss approved.
Edward shook his head and the Vince sighed. “I’m sorry, ma’am. I think we really need to get your ankle check.” Grace slumped back to the seat and sighed in defeat. She worriedly rubbed her forehead with her fingers trying to soothe the headache that was starting to form. Edward glanced at the woman and he knew he shouldn’t have gotten involved. He should’ve let her leave and he should’ve ran away when he had the chance. But there was something about her that pulled him back. Edward loved his wife, there was no doubt in that. But he also couldn’t help but feel concern over the woman sitting beside him. ‘Was it because of the one night they shared together?’ He thought. Once they arrived at the hospital, Grace got checked by the doctor and got an x-ray. She didn’t fracture any bone, just a minor sprained ankle. She was laying down on one of the emergency bed after the nurse had wrapped her foot with a gauze. The nurse told her to wait to ask the doctor if she could get discharged. Meanwhile, Edward was on the phone with his assistant, telling him that he had to come back in thirty minutes for his meeting with one of the board of directors.
Edward glanced at Grace and saw that she was fine. He sighed before speaking. “I have to go. I’m really sorry about your ankle. Don’t worry about the bills, I’ve had it covered.” He informed her and she felt relieved that she didn’t have to pay the hospital bills. Edward turned around and was about to leave but Grace took hold of his hand.
Edward stopped abruptly and slowly glanced down at their entangled hands. He then glanced at her and studied her face. “Do you need anything else?” He asked her. Grace gulped and moved her eyes away from him.
She didn’t know if she was going to see him again. The least thing she could do now was at least tell him about their son. He deserved to know about his existence and their son needed a father. “I really have to go.”
Edward said letting go of her hand, but Grace tugged on his hand again. Edward sighed in annoyance and glared at her. “What is it? I don’t have all day.” He impatiently told her. Grace bit the corner of her lips in anxiousness and took a deep breath. ‘It’s now or never.’ She chanted to herself. “That night…” She started, fixing her eyes on her wrapped up ankle. “When we-” “Look, I really don’t wanna talk about it. It was a mistake and I’m sorry for what I’ve done to you.” He said cutting her off. He didn’t need her to remind of that night. He regretted his action and he wished he could go back in time and stopped himself from committing a sin. “But I want you-” “I’m sorry, but I really have to go.” He interrupted and pulled his hand away from hers. “What about our son?” Grace blurted, suddenly stopping him from walking any further. He was frozen in his spot and Edward could feel the anxiousness sinking in him. He didn’t know if he heard her right, he was just hoping that he was mistaken for what he had heard. “Don’t you want to meet your son?” She asked him.
Edward tried wrapping the idea of having a child with her around his head. That night was a mistake, a sin that he had been wanting to bury deep. ‘But why is this woman saying such nonsense?’ He thought annoyingly. Edward turned around and glared at her with his fierce, accusing eyes. “My son?” He ridiculously repeated, laughing humourlessly at her terrible scheme. The least thing he needed was a woman chasing after him for his money. “What exactly is it that you want from me? Money? A house? A car?” Grace felt her blood rushing through her body and all she saw was red. ‘What kind of woman do this man think I am?’ She thought bitterly as she intently glared at the obnoxious man in front of her. Grace scoffed and sat up from the bed. “Excuse me, sir, but I don’t need your money, your house, or your car!” She spat through gritted teeth. “I just wanted you to know about your son. I tried looking everywhere for you but I couldn’t find you.
Now that I have, I want you to know that we made a child that night and you’re the father.” Edward couldn’t believe her words as he shook his head in disbelief. “And you expect me to believe you?” He sarcastically asked her. “Listen miss, I’m married and I have a daughter. I have a family. So stop with this nonsense.” He warned her. “So you’re married? Were you already in a marriage when that night happened?” She accusingly asked him. He stayed quiet, avoiding her eyes at all causes, and Grace then knew the answer was ‘yes’. “So you were.” She answered for him. “If you need some sort of financial support, just tell me. You don’t have to steep this low and tell me we have a child together.” That did it for Grace. She was burning mad as she bore holes on the jerk in front of her. “Maybe it was better that you didn’t know about him. Maybe it’s better that my son doesn’t know what kind of an a**hole his father is. I don’t need your financial support. I’m doing just fine providing for my son and I. You can shove your money down your throat because I don’t need it.” She angrily said as she stood from her bed, trying to keep herself from falling over. “What do you think you’re doing?” Edward scolded her and quickly took a hold of her arm when she was about to lose her balance. Grace snatched her arm away from him as if she was burned by is touch. “Thanks for bringing me to the hospital. Don’t worry, I’ll pay you back for the hospital bills.” She announced as she took the shoe she was wearing and started to leave. She walked away bumping into Vince on the way. “Ma’am, where are you going? The nurse said she needed to talk to you about-” “Thanks for bringing me here.”
Grace cut him off and shot him a grateful smile. She then kept walking and left the two man alone. Even if every step she took had her silently hissing in pain, she kept going. She would rather leave than let that jerk see her crushed pride, dignity and heart. “Mr. King?” Vince eyed him worriedly and glanced back at the woman slowly walking away. “Follow her, Vince. And make sure to drop her home safe.” Edward commanded and Vince nodded in obedience. “What about you, sir?” “I’ll be fine, I can handle myself. Just make sure she’s safe.” “Yes sir.” He said, ready to follow after the woman but Edward called him back. Vince looked over his shoulder to look at his boss and waited for his order. “I want to know everything about that woman, Vince. Every single thing.” Edward told him as he watched the woman walking away with intense eyes. “Yes sir.” Vince obediently answered and ran towards Grace to give her a helping hand. Kelsey stayed in Mason’s embrace and gave him a little sq££ze by the waist. “What happened then?” She calmly asked in curiosity. “When my father found out that I am really his son, he tried sending us away. He gave my mom a pretty big sum of money and a house out of the country. But my mother didn’t want to leave. This is her home and she couldn’t imagine herself living anywhere else but here.” He explained, staring at a far distance as if he was reminiscing the moment in his head. “So my mother and I ran away. We hid from my monstrous father but his people would always find us.” “But one day, I guess we really did run out of luck…” “Come here, you punk!” The man yelled at the seven-year-old boy who had just kicked him hard on the shin. He tightly held onto the boy as Mason tried wiggling out of his hold. “Let go off him!” Grace repeatedly yelled as she tried to get the man’s hands off of her son. Soon enough, another man came running out from the corner of the street and sprinted towards them.
Grace kneed the man on his private part, causing him to fall onto the ground and cried out in pain, cursing the woman for what she had done. “Mom, let’s go!” Mason said in panic and pulled his mother with him. They merely took three steps away when the man on the ground held tightly on the woman’s ankle. “Go, honey! Go first and I’ll follow after you. Go!” She commanded him as the boy nodded in obedience. He took the bag off of his mother’s back and ran across the street. The other man was about to follow the little boy but the stop light turned green and the cars started passing. “Let me go, you a**!” She yelled as she stepped onto the man’s wrist and pulled her ankle away when his grip loosened and groaned in pain.
Grace saw the other man running towards her. She looked at the road and knew she just had to make a run for it. She started sprinting missing most of the vehicles. But a car was coming rapidly that Grace didn’t see it coming. The next thing she knew was that her body was rolling on the windshield of the car and her body hit the hard, cold ground. She felt her whole body aching, as if she was lit on fire. She looked across the street to see her son halted in his tracks and a tear rolled down his cheek. All of a sudden, the pain from her body faded and the only pain she could feel was her heart aching seeing her son cry. She shot him a reassuring smile and shooed him away by gently flicking her hand. Kelsey’s heart was aching with his. She pulled away from his embrace and glanced at his teary eyes. Mason stared into her sad ones and a tear fell on her cheek. He gently wiped it with his thumb and shot her a small smile. “Did you hate him? Do you blame your father?” She asked him as her own anger boiled inside. “I did, and I guess I still hate him for it.” He honestly answered rubbing her smooth cheek soothingly. “I lived in the streets for two months trying to escape him. I starved and got beaten up. But I kept going, I tried running away from him.” Mason stopped and only stared at her beautiful and flawless face. “What happened then? How did you end up living with them?” She asked him as the thought nagged her mind. She was dying of curiosity. She knew she shouldn’t force him to share his life story but he had already started it. Stopping now would only leave her in questions. “My grandmother took me in. Apparently, she knew about my mother and my existence. She looked for me when she found out about my mother’s death. For two years, she took care of me, taught me everything I needed to know about the family business, loved me.” He told her and Kelsey felt relieved that Delilah was there to save him and provide him with care and love. “She tried to hide me from my father, but eventually, Victoria saw me. I looked exactly like my father when I was a child. So I guess she already had a wild guess of who I was.” “Did she hate you?” Kelsey questioned with her head tilted on the side, making her look like an innocent child just realizing how cruel the world really was. Mason wholeheartedly smiled and shook his head. “No, never. She said it wasn’t my fault. So she took me in and made me live with them. I was against the idea because I didn’t wanna meet my so-called father. But Victoria loved me, cared for me as if I was her own. She never treated me any differently from how she treated Ella. She never made me feel as if I was an outcast in the family” “And how did Ella feel about you back then?” Kelsey threw another question at him. “She was ecstatic that she was having a little brother. God, she was so annoying.” He chuckled as he remembered how annoying and infuriating she was when she found out that she was having a younger brother. Kelsey smiled as she saw the glint in his eyes. He looked happy as he relived the moment in his head. “And your father?” She questioned and she quickly regretted asking as his features turned cold again. Mason shrugged his shoulders and slowly moved his hand away from her cheek. “He wasn’t pleased about it. But he really couldn’t do anything to me, Victoria wouldn’t allow him. He always made me feel like I didn’t belong. That I wasn’t part of the family. But I guess we learned to just ignore each other as I grew older. That doesn’t mean we don’t bicker here and there, we still do. I guess now it’s just a rivalry between father-and-son.” He sighed and Kelsey knew his story was done. Kelsey was glad that he had opened up to her. She was glad that at least now, she understood him better. She understood why he always acted cold and carefree. She suddenly felt like she was getting pulled deeper in the hole and she knew she completely fell for the man in front of her. The man whom she only met because of a stupid contract. Kelsey wrapped her arm around his neck and pulled him into a tight hug. They were in each other’s arms for a while and Mason let her comfort him.
Until a question popped into his head. He pulled away and held her shoulders. “What about you? Where’s your father?” He asked in curiosity. Kelsey paled and stiffened. She was taken off guard by his question. She wasn’t ready to share her story yet, it wasn’t as harsh as Mason’s but she wasn’t comfortable to share it with him yet. “I’m hungry. We should get some dinner.” She announced as she stood up and waited for him to get up. Mason groaned and rolled his eyes at her. “C’mon Kelsey, I practically told you my life story.” “I’ll tell you when I’m ready. I promise that you’ll be the first one to know.” She honestly told him and Mason saw the sincerity in her eyes. “Fine.” He sighed in defeat and got up as well. He took her hand and intertwined her fingers with his. “Let’s go get something to eat. Do you like seafood?” _______________________
Hired Bride - Season 1 - Episode 38
Hired Bride - Season 1 - Episode 40