The grass basked in the attention and love the setting sun showered as leaves danced down their branches, landing on the flower rimmed cobbled ground. The sky was bright yellow, freckled with a few white clouds here and there, proving nature's perfect imperfections once again.
With every step, one could feel the soft yet welcoming breeze, which made every day feel like summer, no matter the weather. The air was peaceful, serene, and relaxed— Maria despised it all.
Her eyes trailed up the hand linked with hers and stopped at the face of its owner, David, the man she'd recently exchanged vows with before this atrocious change, boasting the widest grin she'd seen since he told her 'I do.'
"Isn't it wonderful?" he asked proudly, hand on his trimmed waist and eyes soaking up the bungalow that stood in the largest piece of green land she'd ever seen.
"Its," her eyes traveled to the surrounding wooden fence that seemed to stretch for miles and then returned to his expectant eyes. She forced a smile. "Spacious," she concluded, and his eyes only brightened.
He abandoned his suitcase and walked behind her, wrapping his slightly muscled arms around her waist and sighed happily. "It's all ours, my love," he said, and she flinched. "This place is going to make our family happy. I can just see it."
She turned to his cheerful smile and then to the wooden house. Maybe it was a thing of angle. Tilting her neck to the side, she narrowed her eyes and creased her eyebrows, desperately wanting to catch a glimpse of whatever her husband saw.
So, the two stood silently in their spoon position, both staring at the building, with twin-track thoughts running parallel to one another.
David gladly inhaled the fresh scent that came with the bright green grass, and Maria scrunched her nose at how much work it'll be to take care of the impending bush. David saw fresh food with the animals at the back—Maria was hit with the disgusting smell of wet fur. He saw a cute low picket-fence marking off his territory; she saw the worst security form known to man.
Worst of all was the deafening silence of the surrounding, save the neigh’s, crows and whatever sounds that came from the back. She feared just how many animals her husband had bought.
“Isn’t it too quiet?” she asked shakily and David’s body vibrated as he laughed.
“I’m sure our children will make up for that,” he said and she froze.
Off course they’d talked about off springs, but at the time she’d figured maybe one —two highest and then their laughter will fill up whatever apartment they decided to live in, but here? How was she supposed to fill this place with children? Did he expect her to produce a football team to play big family—emphasis on the big. Her stomach knotted at the thought and she could not blame anyone but herself.
Right from college, David had never fancied apartments and when he came up with the suggestion of owning their own house, Maria had been hard to persuade—the woman liked her elevators. Not backing down, David proposed a wager, stating the first person to find a furnished house or in her case an apartment that fitted their budget, will win and then they’d move, no questions asked.
To be fair, when they shook hands on it, she thought she had three or maybe a week after their honey moon to plan, imagine her surprise when David came into the hotel room that night, grinning like he always did with news that he’d won.
How he did it was beyond her, but there the taxi was on the last day of their honey moon and Maria had no choice but play along. The farther the car rode, and the more buildings turned to trees, her lips tightened whilst David sat beside her, his unwavering boyish smile on full display. She called bullshit and he snickered sore loser.
David spun her around, making her crane her neck backward as she stared into his eyes. How hopeful and giddy they were.
"I can't wait to spend forever with you," he said as he smiled, and she returned it guiltily before he took her hands in his and lead her into their new home.
The night came in, and the two lay in bed; Maria wrapped in a slumbering David's arms and her eyes wide awake, staring at the wood brown wall decorated with nothing but a wall clock.
With every tick, she remembered the blaring horns from the drunks of her estate, and with every tock came the memory of light smog that occupied the factories she worked at.
She was a city girl, born and bred beside the reflection of Skyscrapers, high ways, and coffee. Oh, coffee. Did they even sell it here? There wasn't a decent store for miles—or did David expect her to grow that too? She shuddered slightly. What did she know about plants? How disappointed will he be when he found out she couldn't stand the smell of animals unless they were deep-fried? Would he leave her when he discovered she'd never walked more than a mile on foot? Was her marriage over before they could share their one month anniversary?
Overwhelmed, she turned in his arms, burying her head in his rising chest, and she felt his arms tighten around her.
"Okay?" she heard him muffle in his sleep, and she clung to his bareback. David had never been a fan of anything asides shorts to bed, and she was not complaining. She breathed in the scent of the Bulgarian rose mixed in his skin and let it cloud her thoughts. It was her favorite flower—the rose, and he'd changed his cologne for that particular reason.
"Maria?" his husky voice asked audibly this time.
She couldn't bring herself to voice the reason for her distress, so she hugged him tighter, eradicating any space between the two. His warmth was the greatest comfort in her world.
She felt his wet lips on the top of her head, followed by his palms gently stroking the strands of her curled hair. "It's okay," he said finally and she exhaled.
With that, she eased into his embrace, worries forgotten, mind leaning to sleep and her lips stretching to the first real smile of the day.