Destiny Ever-changing
Author: Tasha Ivey

Chapter 2
Brooks - The Beauty and the Beast



I can’t stop giggling like a teenage girl as I walk back up to the house. As soon as I see her car pull away, I literally start rolling on the ground laughing. I haven’t laughed like this in quite some time. Even if only short-lived, I feel human again. I truly need that.

I find it hard to believe that, only an hour ago, I was yelling at a Goldenrod bush, taking all of my frustrations out on it, until that girl showed up, anyway. I felt sorry for her, but it’s nice to see that someone, other than me, is having a bad day . . . week . . . year. I almost wanted to walk over and start assaulting that tire with her, not to say that would have made either of us feel better. My current situation certainly wouldn’t have changed. I wonder what is going on in her life. Is it anything like mine?

I heard the thumping of her tire right before she pulled over in front of my house, so I immediately stood up and dusted myself off, knowing that I would likely be changing it. As she jumped out of her car, the first thing I noticed was how attractive she was, and my eyes darted to the passenger side of her car, expecting a woman that beautiful to have a boyfriend or husband along with her. No one was there. Watching her kick the tire and scream at it was quite entertaining, and I couldn’t help but replying to her plea. By the look on her face, I’m pretty sure I startled her, but her turning around allowed me to get a better look.

Her long, dark brown hair swung around as she turned, blanketing her right shoulder in a silky sheet. Her face was thin, but the structure of it was like that of a goddess: pronounced cheekbones, full lips, and glistening green eyes. I could instantly tell, though, that she had been troubled long before her tire went flat; I could see dried streaks of mascara under her soft eyes. I knew exactly how she felt.

I’m positive I didn’t help her to feel any better either. I’m typically an incredibly pleasant guy, but the last few weeks have not exactly helped my demeanor. I could tell that I wasn’t being overly friendly by any stretch of the imagination, but at least I helped with the tire, right? She was very easy to like, even with her saddened expression. Friendliness seemed to just pour out of her, and she displayed such a kind personalitya quality that I rarely see in the women in my social circle.

Just as we finished cleaning her trunk out so I could get the spare, she gasped at what I was holding. I didn’t even realize what it was, at first, but I could see that it really embarrassed her. In fact, I didn’t even know they were panties until I had turned to put the box down with the others. I wanted to laugh, but I knew she was humiliated enough, so I attempted to act as if I didn’t notice.

After I was finished replacing the tire, we crammed everything back in the trunk, box by box. I intentionally avoided that one box that made her so uncomfortable, but she was too focused on making sure everything fit in the trunk to notice that it was still on the ground. Reluctantly, I picked it up to hand to her, and I noticed a gift tag stuck on the side. It said, “To Laura, From: Aunt Judy, with love.

Her name is Laura. I thought. I didn’t think those were quite her style.

I had to stop myself from looking at her backside to see if I could determine what her style was. I held the box out to her, and, again, she was mortified. She grabbed at the box, obviously trying not to look at it, and I lost my grip. A few little storm clouds were blowing in, and the winds were beginning to pick up with absolutely perfect timing. Just as the oversized, parachute-like lingerie spilled out of the box, the wind gusted with such force that they took to it like kites. If I ever decide to make a kite, I'll know exactly what kind of material to use, at least.

Forgetting for a moment what I was in pursuit of, the knight in shining armor in me kicked in, and I ran after the panties to retrieve them, feeling slightly like a pervert. She didn’t take long to leave after that incident, which made me wish that I hadn’t changed the tire so quickly.

I was just starting to warm up to her, but I can’t blame her for running off so fast. I’m sure it was weird for her to have the lowly gardener looking at her panties; I still can’t believe she assumed that I just work here. I have way more money than any gardener would have, but, based on the way I’m dressed today, I can see the reason for her immediate assumption.

Interrupting my thoughts, my fiancée, Jacqueline, steps outside and immediately swats at the tiny gnats swarming around her heavily perfumed skin. “I don’t know why you insist on doing all of that yard work. You know the landscapers will be back next week.”

“It’s not beneath me to do physical labor,” I reply as I wipe away a trickle of sweat just before it reaches my eye. “Now that someone is living here, there’s no need to have the landscapers back until we leave. I prefer to do it myself.”

She rolls her eyes. “Whatever. Just be sure you keep your rough hands off of me until I get you a manicure. Oh, and who was that out there you were talking to a minute ago? And what are those tools for?”

“That woman had a flat tire, so I changed it.” Right before I handled all of her panties. “And you can forget about the manicure.”

Jacqueline laughs mockingly. “You mean to tell me that you think you are a mechanic now?”

“Look, she needed help, so I helped her. People do still do that, you know. You should try it sometime.”

“Oh, Joshua, I aspire to be as perfect and saintly as you someday,” she gushes dramatically, just before pretending to stick her finger down her throat to gag herself and slamming the door.


She sure knows how to get under my skin. I hate it when anyone calls me Joshua, but she insists that it sounds more dignified than Brooks. I was named Joshua Brooks Tucker, Jr., after my father. My father always preferred the moniker "JB," since he never cared for either name. I have told Jacqueline at least a dozen times that I detest being called Joshua, but she doesn’t care. That’s how she isself-absorbed and doesn’t care about anyone else’s feelings. If she decided that God himself should be called something different, she would do it.

I know I haven’t been at all pleasant with Jacqueline lately, but I haven’t always been that way. I have known Jacqueline Martens my whole life, and she was once a compassionate, affable girl.  I actually developed a crush on her when I was approaching my early teen years, and, over those next few years, I was crazy about her.

Inevitably, though, when she was about 16, she finally realized that her family was wealthy, and she acted like it. All she could talk about then was her ever-increasing social status, everything she had recently purchased, and how much better she was than her friends. I began losing interest in her at that point, but we still had to see each other often.

Our fathers were best friends in college, and they have always maintained that friendship. Even though they own competing oil companies, they somehow manage to put the rivalry behind them and remain close. Our families spent a lot of time together while I was growing up, and they still do. Most of the vacations that we went on included the Martens, so I could never escape from Jacqueline; although, I didn’t always complain about it.

She is a stunning woman, and there isn’t a man alive that would deny that. What man wouldn’t find a girl like her attractive? Her waist-length, blond hair shimmers like it’s made of spun gold; her deep blue eyes are framed with dark eyelashes; she has smooth bronze skin; and her lean body curves in all the right places. She’s very well-kept, and she would never allow someone to see her otherwise, which is why she locks herself in the bathroom for nearly three hours every morning. She even has an hour dedicated to her so-called beauty routine before she goes to bed. It’s ridiculous, actually. To me, a woman that has to put that much time into her appearance, really isn’t beautiful at all. Natural beauty is something that I truly admire.

Once I graduated college, she and I began a serious relationship, much to the delight of our parents, and she seemed to have finally outgrown her belief of superiority. My parents have always preached to me about the importance of marrying well, which, to them, actually means to marry someone with money. Jacqueline certainly meets their qualifications; although, she doesn’t meet all of mine. Sure, she is exceptionally beautiful, independent, and smart, but she lacks one immensely vital thing to mea heart.

Regardless of how I feel about her, we are to be married on August 31st, and it’s already the beginning of May. Overwhelming dread fills me more and more every day. I could very easily break things off with her; I have no real attachment to her. However, this is more of a business transaction than a marriage. How could my own father do this to me?




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