Love and War

Bonnie can't help but think life would be so much easier if she didn't have to make choices. If she didn't have to choose between family or a future. If she didn't have to choose between Eli or Alfie. If she didn't have to choose between success or loyalty. If she didn't have to choose between one kind of love of the other.

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1. One

"You are unbelievably unpleasant at times!" I laugh, shoving my best friend Alfie playfully after he has been telling me horror stories to try and scare me.

Alfie has been my best friend in the world since we were just children, maybe about five or six years old. Ten years later and we are still just as close. There was a time last year where we were sweethearts, I guess you could say, but I think we were just trying it out. It was fun though, I don't regret it. It was just light hearted, innocent fun- lots of timid, sweet kisses and twirling around in the afternoons. We were quickly over it though and returned to being best friends again. 

My family isn't exactly strict, but they are very proper and can be uptight if I don't follow the rules. We're one of the richest families in London; we are the richest family that doesn't feel the need to lock ourselves in a gated community. My father runs a lawyer business and I don't really understand what his job is but I know that he is the boss. But our home is a whole load of deep reds and blues and grand four poster beds with silk covers. I have been brought up to always, always, act like a true young lady. I must always wear my corset as tight as possible, I must always powder my face, I must always sit with good posture, I must always take care of my appearance, I must always speak politely and I must never disrespect my home.

However, I am so comfortable with Alfie that we forget about those rules completely and we're both sprawled out on my bed, crumpling the silk sheets and laughing. I laugh a lot with Alfie, so much that it's ungraceful but he doesn't care and nor do I. 

"Bonnie!" I hear my mother calling up the stairs. Alfie and I quickly straighten the sheets and perch on the end of my bed, pretending to have intelligent conversation when my mother walks in, smiling fondly at Alfie. "Hello you two. Alfred, your mother will want you home for dinner by now. I don't want you to be late."

He nods, smiling. "Thank you. Goodbye everybody." 

As he walks downstairs, my mum turns to me. "Dinner is on the table, come on sweetheart."

I follow her downstairs and smile at the maids who are serving dinner. I kiss my dad on the cheek and take my seat.

"Hi dad." I smile. "How was work?" 

"Good thank you sweetheart." he smiles back. "Quite promising, really. You remember that young man I told you about? Jason?" 

"Yes, the one who had to leave for a while to look after his sister." I recall. "How is she, by the way?" 

"Oh, Sabella is fine." he waves the question off. "Anyway, Jason is really looking hopeful. He is a fantastic young man. He is smart, he's kind, he's witty. He has a bright future ahead of him."

I nod. "He sounds great."

"You know, I do not think it would do you badly to marry a man like Jason, Bonnie." my mother says with a small smile on her face. "You're a very intelligent girl, you deserve somebody equally intelligent and somebody who can provide you with a sturdy income."

I shrug. I hate when they bring up marriage. I know I am quickly growing to the age where I need to consider it but I don't want to be married yet. I still want to be young. At the very most I want something just a little more serious than what Alfie and I had last year but I'm not even sure about that. 

"Perhaps." I nod. "In all honesty, I plan to just marry whoever I fall in love with regardless of whether they are smart and regardless of their economical situation."

My father chuckles. "It is sweet that you are still young and thinking irrationally, but one day you will have to be logical, Bonnie. Your mother and I cannot provide for you forever. Once you are married, it is in yours and your husband's hands to look after yourself."

"I agree with your father. And if worst comes to worst, Alfred will make a fine husband!" my mother jokes and we all laugh,

"However much we joke, Alfred would not be a bad choice. I think he will prove himself to be a fine business man."

I roll my eyes and let them both carry on talking about my marriage. Instead of listening, I dream a different daydream. One where I live by myself in a house similar to this but far far away in the countryside. Where I live solely by myself without a husband, just Alfie coming to visit occasionally. If only a woman could get by without a husband.

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