How to Tame My Beastly Husband — Chapter 2. Second Wedding
This chapter has been re-worked by Regan, we have picked up the novel from chapter 64
Today was her second wedding day.
Everyone else might have thought it was her first, but it was the same wedding all over again for Annette, who had returned to the past. Touching her bouquet of white calla lilies and pale purple Lisianthus, she smiled softly.
I never thought I would marry the same man twice.
And of all people, that man was Raphael. It seemed like a poor joke.
Annette had died of an illness and then returned to a day five years before. At first, she had been convinced it was just a dream, but there was no longer any question that this was all too real.
Dressed in her white wedding gown, she slowly walked into the ceremony hall. The scattered pink petals on the floor, the light scent of jasmine filling the air, even the curious murmurs of the attendees were exactly the same as they had been five years before.
Annette had returned to the morning of her wedding day. There was no possible way to simply refuse to marry Raphael. Instead, she had to hold his hand while he stared down at her coldly, walking down the aisle just as they had five years ago.
This time it will be different, she told herself. I will not have another miserable marriage.
A look of resolution appeared on her pretty, doll-like face. Annette had lived very passively before. Born to the most prestigious family in Deltium, she had received a strict education in manners and etiquette. She was very much a hothouse flower, too fragile for any harshness. With the stress of her previous marriage, she had quickly become ill, bound to her sickbed, and then died miserably.
She didn’t want to die like that again.
Annette was going to change everything, one mistake at a time. Starting now, with her second marriage. Fortunately, she had every memory of her previous life, which was going to make this wedding much easier. In fact, things probably couldn’t have worked out any better.
The first time she had married Raphael, Annette had been very upset on the day of the wedding. She had gotten married as if she were being kicked out of her family in disgrace, and her new husband was terrifyingly cold to her. All the evil gossip and rumors about him had poured into her ears and left a terrible scar. Young, immature, and frightened to death, Annette hadn’t been able to hide her anxiety. She had cried throughout the entire wedding.
Of course, that had only made Raphael’s face grimmer. He thought she was crying because she didn’t want to marry him, and the humiliation only made him hate her more. Raphael was a bastard, and his biggest insecurity was his origin. Annette’s tears had painted a terrible picture.
The guests had been thrilled at her unhappiness, excited to see her tears. It was a scandal, and Annette’s reaction only made it bigger. The rumors of their wretched wedding spread far and wide, and Raphael had been shamed throughout their honeymoon.
Annette sighed, remembering.
Let’s not do that again.
So this time, Annette smiled happily. She blushed shyly as she took Raphael’s arm, and never lost her maidenly, fluttering smile. Raising her head proudly, she looked only at the aisle ahead, ignoring all those evil whispers. Gradually, those voices faded to silence.
“I thought you said this was a political marriage? The bride certainly looks happy. Did she already know the groom?”
“Somehow, I thought the Bavaria family had been forced to give up their precious daughter. Are you sure she didn’t beg to marry the Marquis of Carnesis instead? He is very good looking, after all. And look at those robes, my God…”
“Well, Bavaria is very powerful. But the Marquis of Carnesis is a good marriage prospect, too. I’ve heard rumors that he will soon become a Master of Swords. And didn’t you hear that he was given a huge reward for his victories in the war? Iron ore and diamond mines! If I were her, I would fall in love with him, too!”
“Shh! The Duke of Bavaria is looking. Let’s be careful.”
All the guests gossiping and giggling amongst themselves were silenced at once as Annette’s father looked at them. Duke Allemand Bavaria was indeed a powerful man, and the Bavaria family was known to be the noblest family in the capital, after the royal family. The wealth and prestige they had built over hundreds of years was incalculable, and no one dared to cross them. Jealous people sometimes called them those cold-blooded Bavarias, due to their icy demeanors.
Therefore, to Annette’s father, this wedding was an incredible disgrace. He would never have allowed Annette to marry a low-born bastard like Raphael if it weren’t for the event he only ever referred to as the incident.
But in her previous life, Annette was wedded inevitably to Raphael all the same, and all throughout her married life, she had struggled to mediate between her father and her husband.
Of course, I could never satisfy them both. I was so stupid.
Annette laughed inside, thinking of how naive and immature she had been. But no matter what the truth of this marriage was, she had to play the role of a happy bride now. Steadily, she took one step after another, keeping her shy smile. This proud march down the aisle was enough to make those murmurs fade away, and at last she could see the pulpit ahead, and the pastor waiting.
The sight made her falter.
It was a small hesitation, but a sharp contrast to her confident smile. The moment she saw that pulpit, Annette suddenly knew this was real, and all the memories of her miserable life rushed back to her.
Will my marriage be terrible again? Am I going to get sick again, and die?
Annette stopped. It felt as if she was rushing for a cliff, knowing it was before her. The memory of all that pain stopped her in her tracks. But suddenly, she felt a strong force pulling her hands, propelling her forward. It was Raphael.
“Raphael…? Why, all of a sudden?”
Surprised, Annette turned her head to stare at him. Past her thin veil was a handsome man with black hair. Raphael was much taller than Annette and was looking straight ahead stubbornly. The sensual red lips under his straight, aristocratic nose were mesmerizing. A low voice emerged from them, audible only to her.
“Keep smiling, and don’t stop again. There is nowhere to run.”
Inside, Annette laughed bitterly at the contemptuous tone. He was right. And with this cold remember, she could walk comfortably down the rest of the aisle without much effort. Perhaps thinking she had been dizzy, he was holding her much more firmly, and the grip was reassuring. Annette looked ahead with a steadier heart, until she saw her father ahead, perfect as ever.
Annette’s mother was dead, and her brother had been unable to attend her wedding, as he was away in another country. Her father was the only member of her family present. Allamand Bavaria, with his sleek face and striking platinum blond hair, looked incredibly young. It was hard to believe he had fathered two adult children.
His expression was so calm, no one would ever have guessed what was passing through his mind. It gave the guests room to freely speculate.
“Well, look at the Duke’s face. He must be sad, with his daughter getting married. Such a lucky girl. She is so pretty, who wouldn’t feel sad to be parted from her?”
“And look at Annette, blooming like a flower. Maybe the young bride has a crush on her groom, isn’t she cute? Seeing them like this, they look much better together than I expected.”
This time, their ignorant gossip worked in her favor. Even if they were all talking about the silly girl who had fallen in love with Raphael, the Marquis of Carnesis, that wasn’t so bad. He heard all the whispers, too, and as they walked together, Raphael’s expression softened. She could make this wedding a success simply by not embarrassing him.
As she listened to the pastor’s prayers, Annette sneaked a glance back at the guests. Thank goodness, the prince and his new fiancée weren’t there. The prince hadn’t attended her wedding in her last life, either. It was a relief. It would have made the whole ceremony terribly awkward. It was just lucky the guests didn’t know anything about this.
Duke Bavaria had made certain to hush the matter up.
If things continued this way, then she could make it through the wedding without a single hitch. If only the last rite of the ceremony would also go well.
“Now, the groom may kiss the bride, and make his vows,” said the pastor.
Those words sounded like a death sentence to Annette. She was so nervous, she clutched her bouquet in her fingers. She didn’t know whether Raphael would kiss her this time. In her last life, Raphael had been…very, very angry.
And it was somewhat her fault.
In her last life, when the pastor spoke those words, Annette had burst into sobs. This was a marriage neither of them wanted, but Annette couldn’t control her facial expressions. Raphael had been furious.
“Don’t be ridiculous,” he had said, when the pastor requested for him to kiss her. “Just finish it.”
Their wedding had become a joke. Annette was the first bride in Deltium whose groom had refused to kiss her, and it infuriated her father.
Of course, that wasn’t because he loved Annette. Raphael’s refusal was an insult to the status of Bavaria, a public demonstration of disrespect by an illegitimate child. Naturally, the angry Allamand was obliged to chastise Raphael at the wedding reception, and the resulting fight left Annette–the cause of all the unpleasantness–so ashamed that she wanted to die.
Please…don’t let it end like that this time.
Annette bit her lips, waiting nervously for Raphael’s next move. Soon, the light veil over her head was lifted, and Raphael’s face loomed before her eyes.
With his white, handsome face and black hair over his forehead, he was a very attractive man. But his dark blue eyes were frigid. And though he had hardened his face to conceal his own emotions, Annette could see his reluctance. He did not want to kiss her. The moment she saw that expression, she felt a pang of foreboding.
Oh. He won’t kiss me this time, either.
Annette lowered her eyes to hide her disappointment. How could she stop her father from blaming Raphael, and picking a fight with him at the reception?
But then a crazy idea flashed through her mind.
Wait…is it required to wait for the groom to kiss the bride? Won’t it serve the same purpose if I do it first?