A story of two teenagers in love yet unwillingly separated by arranged marriage.

Daphne Warrington walked the grassy path.

She was in SoftshellPark. It was like most parks—with flower, trees, benches to sit on and “Keep off the grass” signs that no one really follows.

It was a very simple place but for many—mostly teenagers—this place was heaven. It was their escape from life. This is where they—when time permits—meet their lovers to catch up and watch the sky during sunset. It was quite romantic. Every couple who met in SoftshellPark thought so. Daphne and Ethan was such a couple.

“Daphne,” Ethan McMillan murmured as she reached him. He opened his arms for her and they hugged. No more words were said but their love was evident. The wind blew and the effect was so dramatic. Both of them had their eyes closed and their hair was swept by the wind.

 

Daphne Warrington was very popular. She’s from the Warrington family. They were famous for their cosmetics business. All the boys were crazy about her. She had light brown hair and bright lapis blue eyes. She was very beautiful and so was her attitude. She was the ideal girl. Ethan McMillan, on the other hand, came from a poor family. In school, many used to think that he stole from the rich people. He was shunned out and ignored but Daphne proved them wrong. He wasn’t a criminal. After that, they started hanging out and eventually, they fell for each other. Daphne was so happy with him. Despite coming from a poor family, Ethan was very kind, just and generous. He was also very gorgeous. He had soft jet black hair and charming deep brown eyes.

 

Daphne and Ethan pulled apart and looked at each other for a minute, his hands cradling her face. Then, he took her by the hand and led her to a bench. As they sat, he held her gently yet tightly as if—because he wouldn’t be able to do so in the future. A day before Daphne planned to tell her parents about Ethan, they announced to the whole Warrington clan that Daphne, their only daughter, was arranged to marry a certain Franco Andrews. His father owned a clinic and he was to take over when his father gets too old for the business. In short, he was filthy rich.

Daphne was heartbroken when she heard this. She loved Ethan but not enough for her to abandon her father. She met Franco that night and he turned out better than she expected. He was such a gentleman and he listened to her. Daphne would notice how his hazel eyes sparkled when he laughed and how his red hair seemed to glisten under the light. You’ll learn to love him, she told herself.

She felt dread at telling her beloved Ethan about this. She knew that it would hurt him—it would hurt the two of the—but when she did tell him a few days after the announcement, Ethan took it calmly. He was in so much pain but he didn’t show it. He needed to be strong.

“I’ll be okay. Don’t worry about me,” he said when he recovered from the shock.

“I’m really sorry. I just couldn’t fail Father,” Daphne told him miserably.

Ethan didn’t reply. He just looked everywhere but at Daphne.

After that, Daphne and Ethan met more frequently.

 

Ethan stroked Daphne’s hair as the last tinge of orange left the sky. He spared a glance at her and noticed that her cheeks were stained with tears. He brushed them off with his thumb and said, “Don’t cry, my love. Things will turn out better.”

Daphne nodded but she was still crying.

“Listen to me,” Ethan said, “At least we were given this time together. At least we can say goodbye this one, last time”

Daphne absorbed this and nodded again but now she looked better—more confident.

“Good,” he said. And then, he kissed her.


Submitted: April 06, 2010

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