Sealed With a Vow

22-year old Claire Delaney's life turns upside down following the death of her beloved father, Mark Delaney, who happens to be the CEO of Delaney Corp.- one of the most successful hotel chains worldwide. She thought things would go back to the way they were once her older brother took over the business...but unfortunately that wasn't the case. Mark's last dying wish? Marry off his daughter to the owner of Weston Hotel Group, in order to maintain the partnership between both thriving companies and prevent any competition. Can Claire possibly seek love in an arranged marriage, or will she be forced to spend the rest of her days with a total stranger? Read to find out.


19. Chapter 19- Golfing Adventures

Labor Day weekend came right around the corner. Derek's parents were hosting their annual charity golf event to raise awareness for multiple sclerosis- an autoimmune disease that affected the central nervous system.


The event was held at their private country club over in La Jolla. It had an exceptional landscape, with lush green grass, colorful assortments of flowers, and a giant marble fountain at the front entrance. There were several doctors and businessmen present that were well-known all throughout California.


I was socializing with some of the wives in the banquet hall while our husbands were outside golfing. Ashley was also here, but I hadn't seen her yet. For all I cared, she could probably be flirting with Derek right now.


"Claire!", I heard someone call.


I turned my head around to see none other than Heather Weston walking towards me. I frowned but then remembered what my husband had told me about everything she'd been through.


Just be patient with her, my subconscious assured.


"Oh, hi, Heather! How are you?", I greeted with a forced smile plastered on my face.


"I'm great, darling," she replied, giving me a kiss on both cheeks.


I waited for her to make a rude comment about my strapless white dress, but to my utter relief, she didn't.


"This is a lovely event you've put on. The golf course looks beautiful," I complimented.


"Thank you. Do you play?"


"Golf? No, I don't. I never really had an interest in it."


"That sounds like me. Derek and his father love it, though," she said with a smile.


"I can see that. They've both been outside for quite a while."


"No surprise there. Well, I'm going to go check on everyone else. Try the clam chowder. It's really good," she recommended, pointing to the large bowl on my table.


"I will. Bye, Heather."


I gave her a hug and then she headed towards the table next to mine. My stomach was so full, but the clam chowder sure looked tempting. Chelsea, one of the women sitting with me, also had her eyes on it.


"Are you going to try some?", she asked.


"I don't know. I mean, I am pretty full, but maybe a little bit wouldn't hurt. Are you?"


"Well, since my husband isn't here to see how much I've eaten already, why not?"


Chelsea gave me a goofy grin, and I couldn't help but laugh. I guessed I wasn't the only food addict at this table.


I ladled a small serving of the chowder into my bowl and just as I was about to put the spoon into my mouth, I felt a pair of hands on my shoulders.


My body immediately tensed, and I let out a high-pitched squeal. Chelsea was giggling at my reaction and greeted whoever it was behind me with a smile.


"Missed me?", Derek murmured, placing a kiss on the top of my head. I breathed a sigh of relief.


"You freaking scared the hell out of me!", I scolded, turning around in my seat to face him. He smiled crookedly.


"Sorry, babe. Anyways, are you done eating yet?"


"Well, I was gonna try some of this soup, but-,"


"Good. Let's go outside now, shall we?", he interrupted, grabbing my arm.


I had no choice but to go with him as he dragged me away from my precious clam chowder. I stared at it with longing eyes until it finally disappeared from my sight.


"Where are we going?", I asked Derek.


"To the golf course. I challenged Keith to a round, and I want you to watch me," he replied with a broad smile.


"But I don't know anything about golf."


"That's ok. The rules are kind of confusing, but you don't have to know them. I'll just teach you a few basic strokes afterwards," he offered, throwing his arm over my shoulder as he pulled me closer to his side.


"Alright then."


When we got to the golf course, my eyes widened in fascination at how large it was and the breathtaking scenery. There were plenty of trees and higher up near the cliff, I could see the blue waters of La Jolla Beach.


A ton of people had showed up to watch Derek and his colleague play, including Ashley. She was standing with Heather by the fountain, and the two of them were having a conversation, laughing and giggling like schoolgirls.


No doubt Derek's mother still wished that his secretary was her daughter-in-law.


"Is everything alright?", Derek asked, snapping me out of my thoughts.


"Huh? Oh, I'm fine. Good luck," I said with a smile.




Once he left, I went to go stand with Chelsea and some of the other women I'd met earlier. She introduced me to her husband, Trent, who worked for Derek's company as the human resources manager.


I heard James announce the match-up between Derek and Keith through the microphone and then everyone focused their attention onto the golf course.


Keith was the first one up. To be honest, I had no idea what was going on. All I knew about golf was that you had to try to hit the ball into a series of holes using the fewest number of strokes.


When Derek's turn finally came, I went to go stand where I could see him clearly. He took a swing at the ball with his driver and then watched as it soared before landing on the grass somewhere about two-hundred yards away.


It felt like an eternity until they were down to the eighteenth and final hole. Derek's eyes were narrowed in concentration as he stroked his chin. Meanwhile, his other hand was absently twirling the iron club.


My favorite part about this match so far had to be seeing him take long-distance shots. The way his upper body and hips rotated with each swing of the driver had me ogling him like some love-sick woman.


He seriously made golf look so sexy.


Before Derek made his final attempt to sink the ball into the hole, he glanced in my direction and gave me a wink. With one gentle tap using his putter, the ball rolled smoothly in.


Everyone began clapping and cheering, and he shook hands with Keith, whom he'd defeated. A smug smile formed on his lips as he walked towards me, holding his baseball cap in one hand.


With the blue short-sleeved polo and khaki shorts he had on, it looked like he'd appeared right out of the cover of Sports Illustrated's golf edition magazine.


"Well, how'd I do?", he asked.


"You played like a pro," I said, wrapping my arms around his waist.


"That sounds nice. Now, I believe I promised that I'd teach you some basic strokes?" His eyes were gleaming with excitement as he placed his cap on top of my head.


"You did? I don't remember," I lied.


God knows I didn't want to embarrass myself in front of everyone.


"Yeah, I'm positive I did. Let's go."


Derek walked back onto the golf course, and I reluctantly followed him. He grabbed a putter from the bag and handed it to me as we made our way towards the green.


"Is real golf anything like Wii golf?", I asked him.


"I guess you'll have to see for yourself," he said with a laugh.


Derek taught me how to hold the putter and which way to angle my body, placing his hands on my hips. I mentally calculated the force of my hit in order to sink the ball into the hole.


I was about to take a shot when I heard a female voice calling Derek's name. I turned around and saw Ashley approaching us. She was wearing a simple light pink dress and looked as gorgeous as ever.


Why couldn't I be her?


"You played so well. I had a feeling you'd beat Keith," she said, touching his arm.


"He's good, too. I was just lucky."


"Oh, don't be so modest. What are you guys up to?", she inquired, briefly glancing in my direction.


"I'm teaching Claire how to golf," Derek replied, grinning at me.


"Ah. You know, I remember the day you taught me how to play at that one golf course near our high school."


"Yeah. You learned pretty fast."


"Well, that's because I had you for a teacher," she said flirtatiously, pointing a finger at his chest.


She pressed herself against Derek, giving him an ample view of her cleavage, and he gulped nervously, directing his gaze upward so that he was looking at her face instead.


"Um, Ash-,"


"And don't forget the whole golf cart incident. Just think how embarrassing it'd be if someone had caught us," she mumbled quietly, but enough for me to hear every single word before she stepped back from him with a lascivious smirk on her lips.


I couldn't believe this woman...


Derek was absolutely mortified, and his face turned bright red as he stood there gaping at Ashley in utter disbelief, looking extremely uncomfortable. He was too shocked to even utter a response.


Did I want to hear about how she and my husband fucked in the back of a golf cart? Quite frankly, no! So she might as well just shut her freaking mouth.


I crossed my arms in front of my chest, glaring at Ashley with pure hostility and disgust. I could feel my jaw tighten as my lips compressed into a thin line.


I really didn't like her.


"Well, I have to go now. I'll see you at work tomorrow," Ashley said cheerfully, completely oblivious to what was going on.


She flashed Derek a dazzling smile then walked towards the parking lot without saying a word to me. I had a feeling that my dislike for her was mutual. But as long as she didn't get in the way of my husband and I, I couldn't care less about her.


"So...where were we?", Derek spoke, pretending to clear his throat as he awkwardly rubbed the back of his neck.


"You two seriously had sex in the back of a golf cart?", I blurted, raising an eyebrow.


"Sorta...," he admitted sheepishly.


"Spare me the details," I muttered under my breath, lifting a hand up.


"I don't even know why she brought that up. She was being totally inappropriate."


Indeed she was.


"Beats me," I scoffed. "Probably thought she could make me jealous or something."


"Can we just get back to golfing? This is getting really awkward," Derek remarked with a flustered expression, biting his bottom lip.


"I don't know...I'm kind of enjoying seeing the CEO of Weston Hotel Group all embarrassed and losing his cool," I said with a wicked smirk.


It was true, he honestly looked so adorable right now. And his cheeks still hadn't returned to their normal color yet either.


"Claire...," he warned.


"Fine, let's golf."


"Thank god," he sighed in relief.


Unfortunately for my husband, I was feeling especially mischievous at that moment, and for some reason, I didn't want this conversation to end.


Eh, maybe I'll bug him some more.


"You should've seen the look on your face, though, after she said that. It was absolutely priceless."


"Just drop it," Derek ordered in an exasperated tone.


"But I like messing with you," I said innocently.


He rolled his eyes, keeping a straight face, but at the same time was trying to suppress the smile forming on his lips.


"We're not going to talk about this all day, are we?"


"Do you want to?"


"Hell no!", he exclaimed.


I couldn't help but laugh. Giving Derek a hard time sure was entertaining, but he'd probably had enough already. I didn't want to push him too far.


"Let's go back to golfing now, shall we?"


"Are you going to bring up Ashley?" He looked skeptical.




And to his utter relief, I was serious this time.


After practicing several strokes with the putter and wedge, most of which had resulted in me sinking the ball into the hole, we both got in the golf cart and Derek drove us to the next hole so I could work on my long-distance swings.


He told me which direction to aim with the driver then stepped back to watch. I knew that I had to strike the ball hard because the target was a couple hundred yards away.


"Here goes nothing," I mumbled to myself.


I swung my arms back as far as I could and to my surprise, I felt the driver make contact with something behind me.


"Fuck!", I heard Derek cry out.


I immediately dropped my club and spun around to see him jumping wildly as he clutched his manhood, his face contorted in pain.


"Oh my god, are you ok?", I asked him worriedly.


"You freaking wacked my balls!", he exclaimed.


"Well, you should've stood back further."


"I didn't know you'd lift your club that high up!", he protested.


"Oops..." My cheeks reddened in embarrassment.


Thank god no one was around to see us.


"Man, you're vicious with a driver."


"Can I try again?", I asked him. His eyes widened in horror.


"Oh heck, no. I don't wanna turn into a man without a penis." I couldn't help but giggle.


"But I was doing so good. Please, Derek?", I pleaded, pretending to pout my lips. And just like I'd hoped, he gave in.


"Fine. I'm going to stand over there...where I'll be safe from you," he said, pointing his chin towards a tree that was a couple meters away from us.


"Ok. I'm sorry for hurting your pride and joy by the way."


"It's alright, baby." Derek chuckled softly, pulling me into his arms.


I gave him a peck on the cheek then turned on my heel, walking back to where my driver was. I picked it up and continued what I'd left off.


Eventually, after I'd learned how to use all the different clubs, I played against my husband. He went easy on me since I was barely even a beginner, but in the end, I still lost...terribly.


"You know, I think I'll just stay away from golf for a while," I remarked when we were walking back to the banquet hall.


"You'll get better with more practice. Trust me," Derek said with a smile.


"Hey, I know what would be interesting."


"What?", he asked.


"Teaching you how to play hockey."


"Oh god, don't even go there."


I laughed and took Derek's hand in mine as we strolled into the clubhouse. Heather and her husband were standing outside the banquet hall talking to an older couple. All four of them turned around when they saw us.


"Oh, there you are. Where have you been?", James asked.


"Outside. I taught Claire how to play golf," Derek replied.


"Well, it looks like you two had fun. You were out there for hours," Heather remarked with a smile.


"Yeah, we kind of lost track of time."


"Anyways, this is Dr. Sarah Nelson and her husband, William Nelson," she introduced, gesturing to the couple standing beside her.


"It's a pleasure to meet you," Derek said, shaking both their hands. I did the same.


"Likewise. My, I still remember the day I delivered you in the hospital. And look at you now...such a handsome young man. I've heard a lot of wonderful things about your company," Dr. Nelson spoke in awe.


"Thank you. You've been keeping in contact with my parents?"


"Of course. We're very good friends. And I believe you're the Westons' daughter-in-law?", Dr. Nelson asked, directing her attention to me.


"Yes," I said shyly.


"A young lady as beautiful as you must be the envy of every girl in California," she commented with a warm smile. Her husband nodded in agreement, and I could feel my cheeks turning red.


Derek gave me a wink and wrapped his arm around my waist, pulling me closer to his side. He coughed before beginning to speak.


"Well, Claire and I are probably gonna head home now before the traffic gets too bad."


Thank god he was saving us from having to get dragged into a longer conversation.


"Alright then. Drive safe," Heather said.


She and James hugged us both then they walked into the banquet room with Dr. Nelson and her husband. I found it interesting how she was the same doctor that had delivered my husband twenty-four years ago.


A smile formed on my lips as I imagined Derek as a baby. Even back then, I bet he was still handsome, but in a cute and adorable way.


"Guess what plans I have for us next weekend?", Derek asked when we were in his car driving back home.




"I know we're both not kids anymore, but I was wondering if you wouldn't mind spending a day at SeaWorld. I haven't been there in years, and I really want to."


"Are you kidding me? That place is my life! No one is ever too old for SeaWorld."


"Sounds like a plan then," he said with a grin.


"You bet. I'll probably end up having a nightmare about killer whales in my sleep tonight."


I pretended to shudder. Those giant fish sure were fun to watch at shows, but I'd never dare to get into a fracas with one.


"You won't. It'll just be me you dream of," Derek reassured with a smirk.


"You wish." I playfully slapped his arm.


But it turned out he was partially correct because that night, I ended up dreaming about killer whales playing golf...and they used my husband as their club.



A/N- Looks like Claire may have played too much golf :p. And wow, Heather was actually polite in this chapter. Ashley, on the other hand, seriously needs to know her boundaries when it comes to Derek. He and Claire are seriously so cute together, though(: As you guys might know, school starts again for me next Tuesday. Hopefully, I'll be able to update before that. If not, then this story will be put on hold until I find time during the busy school year to write. There's still a lot more in store, trust me(: Remember to like and comment!

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