Falling for My Old Husband (sophia edwards and michael fletcher) Chapter 1473
The talk in the living room resumed shortly after Carmen retreated upstairs. The whole family could sense that it was a crucial time in her life since she was about to transition from a teenager to a young adult—a process that was otherwise known as ‘the transition’.
It was at the start of the family discussion when Sophia first made the announcement that a historical revolution was slated to happen at around the same time Carmen transitioned into young adulthood.
“Carmen is going to start using condoms soon,” Sophia declared slowly with a sigh. “She’s all grown up now. She’s no longer the kid she used to be.”
Upon hearing the news, Cooper and Anna felt their hearts sink. Linus, too, looked as if he was in despair.
Carmen’s words would leave the family heartbroken for an entire year.
Her generation had evolved and using condoms at eighteen was commonplace. While the adults in the family were acutely aware that it was a rite of passage, they could not help but feel as though they were about to lose their little girl—whom they had raised for seventeen years—to some filthy boar-headed boy.
Sophia figured that Carmen would be done with her shower by the time the discussion was over, so she knocked on the latter’s bedroom door before entering.
She tried to come to terms with the fact that her daughter was growing up. Carmen no longer needed a nanny and she had been weaned off the bottle for years. Now, she was a teenager whose bedroom door was always locked and no one could enter without her permission.
Carmen is a big girl who wears a bra now, Sophia reminded herself.
Carmen was about to sleep when she heard the knock on the door. With a tired look on her face, she opened the door to reveal an enthusiastic Sophia.
“Darling, don’t you have to get ready for finals now that it’s a new school term? How about I look through the mock papers with you?”
“Mom, I graduated with a PhD,” Carmen pointed out as she looked at her mother through bleary eyes. “High school exams are a piece of cake.”
Sophia instantly switched topics and quipped, “I heard that you broke up with your boyfriend today. Do you want me to beat his head into a pulp?”
Carmen rolled her eyes in exhaustion before she sighed. “Mom, you can’t go around beating people’s heads into a pulp—it’s illegal. I’m old enough to handle my own dating life, okay?”
“Oh, well… How about if we go through your thesis together?”
When she heard that, she glanced at the kid’s watch on her wrist. “Mom, it’s eleven! We’ll go through the thesis tomorrow. Can you please let me head to bed now? I have to self-study at seven in the morning!”
Upon hearing that, Sophia began to back out of the room and responded, “Okay,—go and get some rest. I won’t keep you up any longer.”
Carmen lazily crossed her thumb over her index finger to form a heart. “Here’s a heart. Love you, Mom.”
Sophia gave her a kiss on the cheek. “Goodnight, darling.”
After having sent Sophia on her way, Carmen crossed the room to her bed and sank onto it. She stared at the ceiling, which was simulated to resemble a starry night sky. I’m practically an adult. Can all of you please stop treating me like a child?
The mattress came with aromatherapy and temperature-control features and it was made to perfectly conform to one’s sleeping habits, thereby bringing out the best sleeping experience. For Carmen, who was already worn out, that meant she was close to falling asleep the moment she hit the bed.
When she dreamed that night, it was as if she had traveled back to her own past.
Out of the few of her childhood nightmares, one involved her being kidnapped by someone who wanted to kill her. She was frightened and scrambled to hide under a table, which was when she heard a voice that said, “Come here. Close your eyes.”
She closed her eyes and fell into someone’s arms. She could still remember the feeling of being held that way—it felt safe, reliable, and warm.
She grabbed his shoulders and she was so terrified that she crumpled his shirt in the process. She kept her eyes closed all the way, afraid to open them, but the moment she did so, she saw her parents.
The man placed her down in front of her parents and he slowly stepped back until he disappeared from view.
She was so scared that she broke into ugly sobs. By the time she finally calmed down, the man was long gone.
The next day, Carmen left the house at six in the morning while yawning as she perched on the back of Theo’s bicycle.
Theo was in his forties, but it seemed like he did not age a day ever since he started using the three-step age-defying skincare collection that was manufactured through a collaboration between the Michel Medical Technology Group and Ronney Group.
When Michel Group and Ronney Group started their collaboration, the two giants in their respective industries had completely revolutionized the future for mankind. Not only did they launch the Premium High-Tech concept, the cosmetics department in Ronney Group had also partnered with Michel Medical Technology Group to produce several skincare and cosmetic products that would stop aging in its tracks. As a result, Carmen and her pets were the only ones who saw any change in appearances over the years while everyone else in the family looked the same.
Presently, Theo leisurely pedaled his bicycle with his granddaughter perched behind him as they headed down the familiar road that led to the school. His schedule was synchronized with Carmen’s. He was the security guard stationed by the school entrance and every morning he would scrutinize every person who entered and left the school grounds, making sure that there was nobody suspicious among the crowd.
By six-thirty, they arrived at the school and saw that the elite institution was brightly lit. It seemed as if everyone had arrived earlier than usual.
When Carmen entered the classroom, everyone contemptuously turned to look at her, but she was used to their sneers and paid no attention to them as she walked toward her seat. She placed her bag down and plugged in her earphones to listen to music while she read her books, ignoring the malicious whispering that went on around her.
She had long been made the butt of the joke by her peers. To them, she was a shameless modern-day Cinderella who pined for a prince, but even she had been the daughter of a duke. On the other hand, her father was just a lowly security guard who was stationed at the school entrance to check the student ID tags.
Everyone in school hated Theo because he took his job seriously. He was tasked with checking everyone’s student ID tags along with their accessories and make-up. Any person who was caught with heavy eye make-up would be forced to wipe it off before he would let them pass through the school gates.
The seat next to Carmen remained empty although it was where Flynn was supposed to sit. She had demanded that the teacher place her next to him on account of her excellent grades, but it frightened him instead. As a result, Flynn feared coming to school and he would only attend classes once or twice a week for the sake of it. He was terrified of running into her.
However, he had kept himself busy on the days when he was absent from school. He penned several insightful theses and every once in a while, the school would commend him for winning an award or two.
Meanwhile, Carmen’s existence only seemed more diminutive with every new achievement that he attained.
However, she never bothered about any of those.
She had always been the odd one out in the school. She never wore any make-up and never cared to dress up either. The school uniform came in several designs, but her staple was the ugly school-regulation tracksuit that made her look unflattering. Her hair was constantly in a careless top-knot and she wore the same pair of canvas shoes every day.
Carmen did not have any fashion accessories or any designer items and she wore a kid’s watch that had been fashionable over a decade ago. That watch was now a discontinued piece of junk—not even online shopping platforms would have it in stock.
All in all, she was a plain and unsophisticated nobody and she stuck out like a sore thumb in South Bayside High School.
Nonetheless, everyone could sympathize with her. After all, she came from a poor family and she was the only person in class who had enrolled into the school based on academic performance.
Class had yet to begin and the students in the classroom were gathered in groups of two or three as they chattered among themselves.
Just then, Flynn walked in and a hush descended over the room. However, his normally handsome face was twisted into a grimace today. Instead of resembling Taylor Murray, he looked as though he had been bashed up—his features were swollen and distorted with bruises all over his face.
He gritted his teeth and strode over to his seat before throwing his bag onto his desk. He viciously glared at Carmen and waited for the lowly peasant girl to explain herself. I want to know who gave her the instructions to screw things up for me at the clubhouse!