His Ex Wife

Chapter 11: Coffee with Iyan

Flashback

Time went slower when you had a friend in this strange place, UK was just so cold and lonely ever since Mariella came here and her father was barely visible at home and she was grateful for that, she’d chose to be away than in his company at any moment in time.

Mariella’s father was amongst the richest men in London at that time, most bear witness that he had worked extremely hard to get where he was. His power was known to all; competitors had to think twice before even thinking about laying a finger on him- he was even rumored to have risky tie-ups and deals with the Russian Mafia.

But for Mariella, he had only been Mr Rupert John Lewis, she could not even utter the word father for him, he meant nothing to her, she had thought of that very vehemently at times when she was all alone. She hated him and the more time passed in this strange country with these strange and unfriendly people, her hatred grew worse, not only towards this new place but most of all her father, whose presence made her tremble like a leaf.

Things had been different back in Italy before her mother died, both her mom Lucy and Mariella were a big happy family, or so they used to think. Her mother had been a beautiful British woman but her roots had been Italian. She had never told her why she had brought her away from her father and nor did Mariella ever ask. She was happy to have just her. Working as an administrative clerk for the local school, they did well to make ends meet and lead a peaceful life but her mother had withheld the fact that she had leukemia from her daughter.

The cancer had been eating her up since 4 long years, her mother had stopped responding to treatments much recently and Mariella had no single clue about that, she did notice her mother get tired easily those days but her death had really brought to her the harsh and merciless reality of life.

After her death, she found out that her mother had already known she would not live long and had thus arranged for her to live with her friend Jane only till she became an adult. But fate had another plan for her, Rupert Lewis had somehow taken official custody of his only heir alive and had specifically come to fetch her all the way to Italy after the death of Lucy.

Since then she had lived with Rupert in his grand mansion but she had been nothing more than a lifeless body. What happened to her was restricted to only 4 walls of that ill-fated mansion.

She did not even have the permission to step out of the home her father had brought her to, she could not even muster up the courage to do so, it would kill her, more likely, he would kill her. Her father was a notoriously dangerous man and just so much more than that.

She missed her family when they had just her mother and herself, Mariella’s father had long left them right after her birth. It would be safe to say that he did not even exist for her and now his existence made her even more ambiguous.

Now that she had decided that she would enroll in school and give her exams, she had taken a firm decision that she was not going to let him control her life. She would study, graduate, get into college, have a degree, stand on to her own two feet, have a life and a happy one, just like her mother had always wanted her to have.

Sometimes though, she used to think about how things could have been different had her mom still been alive just like she was thinking now, waiting at the café for her new friend, Iyan.

“Always so serious….” Iyan touched her shoulders from the back startling her, but Mariella flinched fearfully at his mere touch as he sat down next to her.

“It’s you!” she heaved a heavy sigh of relief, an expression of fear evident on her face.

Though he had meant to only surprise her, she had been startled, as if she had been unexpectedly scared by a ghost.

“Are you okay? You almost jumped up when I touched your shoulders…” He asked concerned as he sat down in front of her.