Cinderfella ~A Modern Fairy Tale~

They say that Cinderella was blessed with her prince through her kindness and hard work and a little bit of magic. Well. The magic part's definitely not going to happen for me. Don't mistake me, I'm no Cinderella. But my prince is...

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8. Chapter 8

"Is this this the residence of Xavier Ramirez?"

Xavier nods.

"Officer, how may I help you?"

The officer pauses, wipes the sweat away from his brow.

"Well, we've received notice that you're harboring a runaway."

A runaway? This is ridiculous. I stand up from the table.

"I left of my own accord. I'm eighteen, legally an adult. I can leave if I want to. I did not run away."

The officer wipes his brow again, clearly stressed.

"Ma'am, your parents told us that you were seventeen." 

I roll my eyes.

"They don't remember my birthday! Of course they said I was seventeen."

The officer grimaces.

"I'm sorry ma'am, but if you don't willingly come with us we'll have to book Xavier over there for kidnapping. Stockholm syndrome is a very serious illness."

I feel like screaming and crying. I know exactly what my parents have done. They've bribed the cop. That's why he's so uncomfortable. They've aligned themselves with the police in the area for 'protection'. Instead of making an outcry, my eyes meet Xavi's. I give him a sad smile, and his eyes turn stormy with knowledge, before turning back to the officer.

"I'll come with you. Please don't worry. I ran away of my own accord, Xavier had nothing to do it."

Xavier stands there, shellshocked, unable to say anything. He storms off into the bedroom and slams the door. I'm glad, because now he won't see the fat tears dribbling down my face and pooling at my feet.

As the officer drives me home, I'm reminded of that first ride in the truck with Xavi. Awkward. Sweet. I draw myself back into my shell, reupholster my armor and bitter purple comes up, bile and I ignore it, keeping my sobs as silent as I can.

Quiet, little child. You should have expected this. Foolish, ignorant child. Money is everything. Their words ring in my head again and again and again and again and I want it to stop.

"Oh, my precious sweet Vanessa!"

My mother's words grate my ear. My bitterness is overflowing, spewing from my mouth. I stride past her. My father is home too. Wonderful.

"Vanessa!" he booms, a facade of happiness for the cop. In my ear he hisses, "Don't you dare leave again. Your door will be locked until the party."  

I twist around, unable to help the angry tears streaming down my face.

"Fuck. You."

I run up to my room, but I can hear my father roaring behind me, lion.

"WHAT DID YOU SAY TO ME?"

I slam the door shut but can still hear my parents.

"Dear, don't worry, she's probably just tired from the excitement." That's my mother, probably latching up to him, sucking up to him honey sweet like a fly.

"I'll be DAMNED if that bitchy, ungrateful daughter of ours runs away again! Do you know what our reputation would look like? What people would say? I'm only trying to secure her future. She's such an ungrateful, worthless little shit."

I laugh quietly, tears falling fast. Of course. My dear father is trying to help me. Micromanaging me, because he can just because I'm a girl, but boys will be boys. Misogeny at it's finest.

"I know dear. Don't worry, the party is in a few days. She won't dare pull something like this again." 

The party. Oh yes. The party where the finest, most eligible millionaires sons are paraded about and I am auctioned off to the best bidder, the handsomest in my parent's minds for beautiful grandchildren. An heir to my father's company. I am no more than a piece of meat displayed in a butcher shop, for all sakes and purposes.

Their voices trail closer to my room. Footsteps. Then a click as something turns and secures. They've locked my door. My prison is complete.

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