Friday, February 14, 2014

Black Keys Chapter 1


(SM) Owns twilight.
(CozItRunsInMyBlood) Owns the plot.
(RobzBeanie) Is a lifesaver and beta this.
(GrandeDame) Is my soul-mate and per-reader.

Chapter 1
Isabella Marie
Working late again, the whole building was almost empty. I think it was only me and the security guys there – it was after nine PM after all.
"Look who's here!"
The voice I'd longed to hear for what seemed like forever called out, forcing me to stop my rapid tapping on the keyboard of my laptop and to look up and away from the screen to where it was coming from.
I jumped up from my seat and ran into his arms, hugging him tightly and squealing in delight when he picked me up off the floor and spun me around, forcing my legs to fly in the air as I lifted them up, an act that was caused by my excitement to finally be able to see him face to face and not through a stupid webcam.
"Princess." He put me down and kissed my hair, hugging me once more before pulling back a few inches to look at me. "I've missed you so much," he smiled.
"Loser!" I said, punching him playfully in the chest. "If that was true you wouldn't have stayed away this long without seeing your little sister." I scowled at him, lips in a tight line, hands on my hips and all.
"Ah, I know, I know. And I'm so sorry about it, Sweetie. But you know it was out of my hands," he sighed.
I did know it was out of his hands. It had been like that since my parents passed away last year when our private jet crashed with them onboard, almost crashing Jasper's and my world along with it.
It wasn't easy for us to go on. Our parents were unlike any other parents in the world; they were the best mom and dad anyone could ask for, even better. There was nothing –absolutely nothing – we asked for and couldn't have. Well, there was nothing that we didn't already have anyway; we had everything and a bit more. And in just one minute they were gone. It took us a long time to accept it and move on with our lives, with Jasper and I having to take care of everything they’d left behind, a heavy weight that was formed in the shape of one of the biggest exporting and transporting companies in the United States of America.
I was barely twenty-one and Jasper was only twenty-four when we took over managing our company, having to get everything back on track since it had almost fallen apart when we neglected it for the two months we spent unable to get to the stage of mentioning their names without crying our souls out.
It wasn't easy. It was a really hard job to take care of all of that with my English major and Jasper's in history, which we weren't even able to finish since managing the company took all of our time.
"I know." It was my turn to sigh. "Come and sit down, I want details about everything." I dragged him by the hand to sit on the black leather sofa that was across from my desk.
He let out a long breath when he was comfortable on the couch, unbuttoning his suit jacket and putting his arm over the back of the couch, moving slightly to face me as I sat with my legs underneath me, already barefoot and jacket-less since the moment all of the other employees went home. "What do you want to know?" he asked.
"Hello! Everything, Dude!" I told him. "And please, I don't want to hear anything about work."
"It was good, Bella. Really good, actually. A little hot, but the people were very nice, and very kind," he said with a nod and a smile.
It was only when he spoke those words that I noticed the slight tan covering his features. It was really a strange sight, since I was so used to seeing him with the very pale skin that we’d both inherited from our mother along with the bright blue eyes and blond locks.
I couldn't help but think Jasper was lying to me about the people part. He knew I wasn't very comfortable with him going to the Middle East. I'd heard all of my life that Arabs weren't very easy to deal with, let alone Arabian Muslims. I couldn't remember one time that Islam was mentioned in front of me and the word 'Terrorism' didn't flash in my mind.
Jasper must've felt my discomfort so he changed the subject immediately. ''The food alone was great, my God! I can't even begin to tell you." When he saw the smile of excitement that decorated my face, he went on and on about the safe subject that starred so many kinds of food and drinks along with the beauty of the country itself.
I'd missed it so much, to have him sitting with me and talking for hours like we were doing now. My heart was dancing in joy because I was finally feeling his presence after a long six months of absence.
"And, I, uh – I met someone," he said almost shyly.
That was another subject I wasn't very fond of: Jasper's lifestyle. My brother wasn't a player, per se, but he’d known a lot of women over the years. Our parents had tried their best to tell us how wrong it was and to wait for The One – that it would pay off in the end when we met our God and would be rewarded for our good deeds. Jasper didn't listen, not so much anyway.
However, the look in his eyes told me that it was different this time, that it might really be that thing our parents told us we’d find at some point: The One.
"I'm pretty sure you met lots of ones," I teased, which made him chuckle and shake his head.
"Okay then, I met a girl."
"Okay, she must be really special for you to mention her," I pointed out.
"She is," he smiled. "Marie, I–I fell in love."
My eyes almost bulged out of my skull. "Get out!" I said loudly, and he chuckled.
"It's for real."
"Oh, my God!" I gushed. "Jasper, this is wonderful. So wonderful."
"And, uh- …"
"I–I'm getting married."
"Shut up!" I screamed in disbelief and delight at the same time.
"I am."
"Oh, my God! Oh, my God!" I squealed, throwing myself in his arms, hugging him and kissing his cheeks like crazy. The happiness I felt for him was beyond words, I couldn't even begin to explain.
"That is the best news. Ever," I told him; my mouth almost hurt from too much smiling.
"I knew you'd be happy for me."
"Of course I am," I replied. "Wow! I can't believe you met the girl of your dreams on that trip. Is she one of the staff?"
"Uh, no. She's, uh – she's a princess."
"Oooh! So you fell in love and suddenly I'm not your princess anymore but your fiancée is, huh?" I pouted playfully.
"No, you'll always be my princess, Sweetie. But, uh, she's a real princess, you know, royal one, the daughter of the king."
I frowned. For a moment I thought Jasper had somehow gone to the United Kingdom at some point in the past few months, but immediately remembered that they had a queen and not a king. Then suddenly realization hit me.
It couldn't be.
"Marie, she's a very sweet girl, so nice and tender. You'll fall in love with her in seconds."
"An Arab?"
"If you'd just meet her and get to know h-"
"An Arab, Jasper? Are you frigging kidding me?! You're marrying an Arab?"
"Marie, listen to me." He took the both of my hands in his. "Love knows no boundaries; it hits you when it feels right, and being with her just feels right."
My bottom lip was trapped between my teeth and my frown deepened as I looked down and away from his face, trying to let his words sink in, but it was just so hard to take.
I shook my head in a failed attempt to shake my disapproving thoughts away. It was his life after all, not mine, but his safety and happiness meant too much for me not to care about their presence in said life, and I wasn't sure if a weak Arabian woman could do that for him.
"She makes you happy?" I whispered the question.
I nodded my head and offered him a small smile.
"Tell me she's Catholic at least," I pleaded, looking into his eyes, eyes that failed to hide the truth from me when they were lowered to look away from mine.
"You've got to be kidding me, Jasper!" I said a bit loudly.
"She – She's not Christian, Marie."
What on earth?!
"Excuse me? What do you mean she's not Christian?"
That's just not right.
He kept staring at the floor.
"Oh, my God! She can't be what I think she is, can she?" I asked in shock. I shouted another 'Oh, my God' when he kept his head lowered and avoided eye contact.
I was mad. Really, really mad.
"A Muslim, Jasper? Seriously? A terrorist?"
"She's not a terrorist. Don't speak of her that way, you don't even know her," he snapped.
"Wow! Really? Because as far as I know Arabs do nothing but kill others – and each other as well!"
"How did you even come to believe that, huh?"
"I've heard about it all of my life!" I defended.
"Are you being serious right now, Marie? Heard about it? Can you even hear yourself? You've never met one, not a single one. Yet you're so okay with judging them, even accusing them of being things they are not."
"How wonderful! They’ve brainwashed you!"
"Stop it!" he yelled, shocking me with the unfamiliar tone in his voice that he never spoke to me with. "I'm sick of your shallow thoughts. You've always believed that without any clue if it was true or not, and absolutely nothing to put your hands on in those thoughts."
"I can go on for years with proof that Arabs are nothing but anima-"
"Watch your mouth, Marie, I won't be taking any of this, not anymore.''
"For her?"
"Not only for her, for the months I spent there and saw nothing from them but pure kindness and generosity. It's only fair to speak about them based on the facts I witnessed with my own eyes, not just gossip I’ve heard."
I think it was the very first time I knew what it meant to be shocked into silence, because the words wouldn't form on my tongue no matter how much I wanted to let them out and free. I kept opening my mouth and closing it, not able to utter one word.
I didn't know if his words were true or not. I was well educated and a smart person; I had an open mind. I refused to think that I was racist or anything like that, because I really wasn't, but when it came to Arabs and Islam, I just had to stop thinking of any good thought. I'd always understood they weren't the nice and kind people Jasper was trying to make me believe they were. It didn't mean I was shallow. I always thought deeply about everything, and my theories were based on the crimes and cruelty I'd seen the media talking about all my life. It was just impossible for it not to be true.
But the look in my brother's eyes when he talked about her – he really loved her, but was love really that blind that he couldn't even sense rubbish when it hit him in the face? I wasn't sure.
I got up from the sofa and paced the room back and forth a few times, moving my hands through my hair in frustration every once in a while. I was still not able to believe that my brother fell for a Muslim – an Arabian one at that. What would our parents think of it?
I stopped in front of him and looked down to his sitting form, then asked again, "She makes you happy?" It was the only thing that really mattered, I’d come to realize. My brother's happiness was more important than anything else. It was his life, so it was his decision. It was the right thing to support him in whatever he wanted as long as he thought it would make him happy. His happiness was truly the only thing that really mattered. Supporting him was my duty, even if I didn't approve.
He looked up at me, a pleading look in his eyes as if he was silently begging me for something I didn't even know. "She does. Like no other," he whispered.
I paused for a few moments before I nodded. "When is the wedding?" I had to ask.
"In four days."
"Four days? Really?"
"I–I came here only to get you."
"Wow!" I said for what felt like the hundredth time in less than an hour. "Aren't you rushing it?"
"It can't be delayed." He looked down again.
"You're head over heels about her, Big Bro, aren't you?" I smiled the best I could even if I still wanted to go somewhere alone and scream my head off.
"Completely," he replied almost instantly.
I nodded again, then shook my head less than a moment later.
"What's her name?"
"Alice? I didn't know that was an Arabian name."
"It's not. Her name is Alica, but the first time she told me her name I thought I’d misheard her and asked her if it was Alice. She tried to tell me how to pronounce Alica the right way but she said I made it sound funny when I said it. She lets me call her Alice, saying she likes it as much as her real name." He shrugged, his eyes smiling as he told me the little story about his princess.
A real princess.
The delight was back in his eyes with that spark that showed how much he actually loved her as he spoke those few words about her. I was completely sure by then that he really loved her and it wasn't just a thing that would soon be over like most of his hookups.
She truly did make him happy.
And it was all that mattered.
"Then let's start getting ready to meet your Alice."



  1. Getting ready for more, but for the prologue how come Bella get to that place? Where was Jasper while his little sister is forced to a man...

  2. I can see that this ride with your story will become an interesting rollercoaster full of ups and downs. I liked how you brought out the stereotypes connected to Arabs and the hortibly prejudiced thoughts your Marie has. What I need to know is how Jasper met his princess because I presume that royals in the Middle East live a very protected life and therefore they are hard to meet. Off to read another chapter!


    Can't wait for more!!!
    Bella, I wanna strangle ya but I know you'll see the light.. I hope soon!! :D

    M <3

  4. it already!!!!!
    can't wait to

  5. Really a very enjoyable story....I am as a Muslim very happy with how u have wrote it...can't wait for more

  6. Wow! Newbie here ;) I'm liking so far what I read. Thanks for share it!