Caroline Evans was getting married.
Not to her fiancé, Eddy Morrison, whom she had loved for eight years. Instead, she was marrying a man she’d only met for all of five minutes and knew very little about.
“You can still back out.” The man looked at Caroline cynically in the waiting room of City Hall.
Caroline toyed nervously with the already creased hem of her shirt, Eddy’s cold expression flashing through her mind. Three days ago, Eddy, who usually avoided her like the plague, invited her over for dinner. When she received his call, she naively thought that her eight years of effort was finally paying off.
She had dolled herself up and showed up eagerly. However, there were others besides Eddy waiting for her. Sitting in a wheelchair with her fingers laced with Eddy’s was a glowing, radiant Layla Evans, who was none other than her cousin.
Before Caroline could take in their relationship, Eddy dropped a bomb on her.
“If you donate your kidney to Layla, I’ll marry you.”
Caroline was dumbfounded. She stared at Eddy in disbelief. His gaze was cold and indifferent, with a hint of hatred, as if he was not looking at his fiancée of eight years but at a sworn enemy.
Caroline was numb all over.
She had been betrothed to Eddy since they were young. When she returned to the country at 16, she fell head over heels for him. For eight years, she’d gained skills to be the perfect wife.
She’d learned to do the laundry and cook. She’d taken up music and art lessons. Despite knowing that he hated her, she loved him and was drawn to him like a moth to the flame. All so that one day, he would see how great she was and agree sincerely to marry her.
But now, reality hit her like a truck. Not only did Eddy not love her, he’d fallen for her cousin. He was willing to sacrifice her to save the woman he loved. Eddy knew how much Caroline wanted to be his wife, yet he agreed to fulfill her wish only if she did the same for him.
This was outright humiliation.
All her love for him vanished in an instant and turned into hatred.
She wanted to kill them.
However, she was not even capable of protecting herself.
Until now, Eddy’s chilling words echoed in her ear. “I’m not negotiating with you. I’m informing you. If you refuse, I could deny you the right to be Mrs. Morrison.”
Caroline clenched her fists against the cold chair.
Although it had already been three days, anger and disappointment surged in her chest whenever she thought of it.
She knew that Eddy was not joking around.
As the heir of the most prominent family in Osbury, he had enormous power to fulfill his goal. If it weren’t for Jude Morrison, his grandfather, Eddy might not even have told her about it. He would have just dragged her to the surgical ward.
Hence, to protect herself, she had to marry someone to prevent Eddy’s plan from coming to fruition.
Caroline gulped and replied, voice steely, “I won’t.”
Then, she looked at the man next to her.
Kirk Morrison. He shared Eddy’s last name.
She had read the information written on his profile. He had nothing to do with the Morrisons she knew. He was just an ordinary white-collar worker. The only thread he shared in common with them was that he was working in a company they owned.
However, his ordinary background did not change the fact that he had an exquisite face, a tall figure, and broad shoulders. He was so perfectly sculpted that it was hard to spot any flaws. When Caroline had first laid eyes on him, she thought he was the CEO of some well-established company.
She’d been staring at him for too long. Kirk had spoken in a low voice and had a smirk on his face.
He was so alluring that it was hard to breathe.
Caroline snapped back to reality and brushed strands of her hair back awkwardly, covering her blushing face.
Kirk watched as she tried to hide her face and smiled. “Do you still remember our three rules?”
“I do.” As Kirk watched, Caroline said, “The marriage will last three years. We cannot involve our private matters in our marriage. And last, we cannot fall in love with each other. We will end this marriage immediately if we find true love within these three years.”
Kirk nodded in satisfaction. Caroline was perplexed. “Why are you suddenly bringing this up?”
He rubbed his fingertips together relaxedly and lowered his head a little, his eyelashes fluttering. “I’m afraid of you falling for me.”
Caroline was instantly speechless. She took a few deep breaths before smiling bitterly. “Don’t worry. I don’t like men.”
She would never fall for anyone again. Having her heart broken once was enough.
Kirk raised an eyebrow, his gaze as deep as an abyss. After a while, he lifted his head. “That’s good, then. Let’s go.”
The conversation had shifted too abruptly. Caroline was stunned for a moment before realizing that it was their turn to register their marriage.
She got up, seeing a couple of newlyweds who had just received their marriage certificates and were beaming happily.
Her vision blurred. She had had dreams of going through this with Eddy multiple times. In fact, while on the way to meet Kirk, she’d still been considering marrying Eddy. But that same moment, she had received a call from Eddy.
“When are you going to the hospital?” he had said, sounding annoyed.
When she heard that, Caroline found that she was not angry at all. Rather, ironically, she wanted to laugh.
Was Eddy so sure that she would be willing to sacrifice everything just to marry him?
Her hesitation and doubt had vanished at once. She grew even more determined to get married to someone else.
“What’s wrong?” Kirk said, pulling Caroline out of her thoughts.
She retracted her gaze, sighing deeply. Tears flooded the corners of her eyes, but her look was cold. “Nothing.”
From now on, she and Eddy had nothing to do with each other. She felt relieved at the thought.
Kirk could tell that some emotional baggage weighed her down, but he did not ask about it. He needed a wife, and Caroline had come recommended to him.
Since they had the same needs, they got together at once. Since they were not too concerned about their future, enquiring about each other’s past was unnecessary too.
Half an hour later, they received their marriage certificate.
Seeing it, Caroline placed a hand over her kidney, sighing in relief. With this marriage certificate, Eddy would no longer be able to force her to give up her kidney.
She was safe for now.
However, the second she thought of her parents, Caroline lowered her head.
She hadn’t had the time to tell anyone about this marriage, including her parents. Their wish was for her to marry Eddy Morrison, especially since the Evans family had been demoted to a lower-class family despite having once been one of the four defining families in Osbury. They had high hopes for her to marry Eddy and bring their family back to their former glory.
They would explode from anger if they learned that she had married some nobody.
“We should visit your parents next.” Kirk shoved the certificate into a pocket, revealing a gold watch under his white shirt when he took his hand back out.
Although it was only a fake marriage, they had to do things the proper way.
Caroline was shocked. “Right … right now?”