Already Decided

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by bestdaydream, Mar 27, 2013.

  1. Elizabeth sighed as she glanced over at the clock, 12:55. 'Just five more minutes..,' she thought to herself. She sat at her kitchen table, running a hand though her loosely curled dark blonde hair, waiting for him. Today would be the fifth date with her soon to be arranged husband and she couldn't wait for it to be over. It wasn't that she didn't like the guy, in fact she actually found him really attractive and nice. It was the fact that her parents had controlled everything in her life ever since she was a little girl. Hardly ever did she have a say in what she got to wear and who she got to date, it was all up to her parents. Growing up, she couldn't wait until she was an adult and could escape their controlling grasp, but even now they seemed to have her on a leash. However, there was nothing she could do about it and she would be forced to spend the rest of her life with this man.

    She heard a car pull up outside and a door open and shut. "Here we go!" she said out loud taking a deep breath and standing up. Quickly she brushed off her dress and made her way to the door where she could see him making his way to it as well.

    (I decided 3rd person because you didn't respond, if you prefer first then we can switch)
  2. Benjamin Daniels, commonly known as Benny by his friends, was twenty three and in his third semester at Carnegie Mellon University, studying to get his Bachelor's in Architecture. He had started a year prior, four years later than everyone he knew from high school. Benny couldn't afford to go to college right out of high school, especially the only local university (and the most expensive) that offered a program in architecture, and neither could his parents. Or rather, his father couldn't. Amber and Paul Daniels had divorced when Benny was fourteen. He'd chosen to stay with his father while his mother went off on her own, getting remarried only a year later. His step father, Roland Hughes, had more than enough money. But when Benny had approached his mother asking for aid, he was turned down. Until now. Last year she'd approached him, saying that she had an offer for him. Roland and her would pay for him to go to any university he wanted, so long as he could commute from his home in Pittsburgh. You would think the offer would be a no brainer, but like every good thing in life there was a catch. If Benny took the money for school, he had to marry the woman of their choosing.

    It had been a long, hard decision for the then twenty two year old to make. He knew his father, were he still alive at this point in his life, would advise his mother to fuck off, that he would help Benny for free in any way he could instead. But Paul Daniels had passed on three years ago in a car accident on the turnpike. Benny hadn't driven it since that day. And so, after a week of trying to make heads or tails out of his situation, Benny returned to his mother and agreed. He felt the same he would if he had just sold his soul to the devil. He may well just have.

    Benny, after seeing his parents' marriage, never planned to marry. Long term relationships were fine but if it's going to end after there's a ring involved, it's only going to be messy. For him to think of marrying someone now, someone who he didn't even know, made him feel ill. The brunette male was getting through the idea by focusing on his coursework. Benny didn't want still be in college when he was thirty, and he had a undergraduate and graduate program to get through if he wanted to get started at any real architecture firm. He definitely had his work cut out for him. Everything was going swimmingly until a few weeks ago. Roland and his mother found him his wife. Business friends of Roland's had a daughter who they deemed it necessary to have a husband soon. It was like pulling teeth trying to get Benny to go on a date with the girl, Elizabeth, but he broke down and went.

    He was, in fact, in his Jeep on his way to get her for what would be something like their fifth date. He wasn't keeping track. In fact, he wasn't making a huge effort on this front. The twenty three year old paid attention when she talked and all, but it wasn't exactly a priority to recall things she'd said in the past. Benny was sure she was a nice person, and she had the potential to actually be a friend. But to him, right now, all she was was the reason he was going to college. Spend time with her, buy her dinner, and he had his education paid for in full. When he arrived at her house, he got out and slammed the driver's door shut before he fixed his shirt. Benny was wearing a pair of dark blue jeans, a dark grey t-shirt with a desert road landscape across it in a lighter shade of grey, and a navy dress shirt which was left unbuttoned. He ran a hand through his hair before knocking on the door.

    When she answered the door, Benny gave her a brief nod. "Lizzy," he said. Elizabeth felt too formal. It was the same reason he had his friends, and other people he liked, call him Benny. "You ready?" They were going for a bit of a late lunch. The twenty three year old had had his Statics class just before this. He was planning on taking her to Lulu's Noodles, one of his favorite places in all of Pittsburgh. It was extremely close to his campus as well, and he frequently went there between classes if he had a break to grab a bubble tea, or sometimes a bowl of noodles.

    [If the location is a problem, I'll change it. No problems at all. I just didn't want to make up his degree at a place that didn't have it haha.]
  3. Elizabeth paced impatiently in front of the door until she heard Benny's knock . Tucking a loose strand of hair behind her ear, she pulled the door open with her other hand and gave him a gentle smile. "Benny," she said returning his nod. She realized that she was just part of a deal he had with his mother and step father to pay for his college expenses, and that these dates were not things he wished to be doing, let alone with her. He probably just wanted this to be done and over with as much as she wanted it to be. Then again, she probably wasn't doing anything to help make these encounters any less painful and dull. "Yep. Let's go," she said, grabbing her jacket and closing the door behind her.

    As they walked to his car, she couldn't help but notice Benny's casual clothes. Looking down at her own attire, despite her dress being casual as well, she feared that maybe she had gone too formal for this lunch. "You look.. nice, today," she said trying to tell if he thought the same. "Is this Lulu's Noodles a casual place?"

    (The location is fine :) ha, but man did your post ever make both of mine look awful haha!)
  4. Benny gave another nod and waited for her to grab her coat. The dress she wore didn't surprise him, and neither did her seemingly perfect blonde curls. He turned on his heel and stalked back to his car with his lanky legs. The twenty three year old was six foot three and mostly leg. He made it back to his Jeep in a few easy steps and hopped in, starting it and waiting for her to get in as well. He glanced over at her dress again as he pulled out onto the road. "It doesn't exactly have a dress code. A lot of students go there, but it's a good place to go after a day at the museums or the Benedum Center too." Benny got onto the highway and began to get up to speed, keeping up with the post-lunch traffic as he made his way back to Squirrel Hill. "How've you been?"
  5. Elizabeth followed followed him to his car, a few steps behind, in silence and entered it the same way. She sat quietly for a few moments, twiddling with her fingers until Benny's question broke the silence. "I've been alright. Everything is pretty much the same in my life." Her life wasn't all that interesting in any way. She was an average twenty two year old female, fresh out of college and ready to give the real world a shot. And so far, it wasn't going the way she planned. Working as a receptionist at an office was never her dream job, not to mention the low wage that came with it, and then comes the whole arranged marriage thing. "And you?" She asked giving him a quick glance, before gazing out the passenger window.
  6. Benny shrugged. "Been working hard on my classes. My composition studio is time consuming. Same with my Statics class." He paused in thought a moment. "Actually, all of them are pretty time demanding." It was true, but Ben had known that this was going to be a tough track when he applied to the program. That didn't phase him. Ever since he was a kid, he had loved being able to build things, whether it was with blocks or with planks of wood when he was older. When he was ten his father had helped him to design and build his tree house. It was currently one of Benny's proudest accomplishments. "I hope you like Thai food," he said then, changing topics. "If not, we can go somewhere else down on Forbes."
  7. "It'll all be worth it in the end...," Elizabeth commented, offering a kind smile. She knew how much he wanted to get into the architectural business. I mean, isn't that the whole reason why they're together in the first place? But she knew what it was like to have a dream you're passionate about and wanting to follow it. Hers was to work with animals. Ever since she was a little girl she has had a fascination them, but much like her other dreams, it was squandered by her parents' strict ways. "No, Thai is fine with me,"she said with a quick nod. She sat in silence for a few moments before piping up again. "Actually, I've never...had Thai food before." Her thumbs beginning to twiddle together again. "I've heard its good, but again, never actually had any."
  8. Benny nodded. "It's good. It's pretty much Chinese food, just the noddles are a bit different and so are some of the sauces." Traffic was flowing at as good a rate as it could with everyone rushing back to their offices from their lunch breaks. Growing up in Pittsburgh, though, gave the twenty three year old a lot of patience with traffic. "I've got a menu there in the dash if you want to look at it." It was clear from the fact he had a menu stashed in his car that he ate Lulu's frequently. In fact, he stopped there most days for something.

    Fifteen minutes later, Benny was finding a parking spot. They'd have to walk down a block or so, but he didn't see a problem with that. It was late September and the weather was still warm. Today in particular was sunny, clear, and in the low seventies with a slight breeze blowing. It was his perfect kind of day. He cut the engine and got out of the car, locking it after Elizabeth got out as well. "This way," he said, leading her down the street. "We're close enough to one of the Carnegie museums if there's time after." His parents may be paying for his schooling, but Benny was still paying his rent and other bills. He had work that afternoon for six.
  9. "Okay, I like Chinese food. Shouldn't be too bad," Elizabeth said a loud, more to reassure herself that it would be good, than to make conversation with Benny. Letting out a soft chuckle she reached forward for the menu. Finding it kinda funny that he seemed to eat there often enough to keep a menu stashed in his car for semi last minute Thai runs. A few things seemed to catch her eye, but decided to make her final decision once they actually got to Lulu's.

    As Benny pulled into a parking spot, she took one last look at the menu before hopping out of the car. "Pretty nice day, huh?" She looked around the streets, wrapping her jacket around one of her arms, seeing as though she didn't. Fall was her favorite season. Growing up in the Midwest, she used to love way the leaves changed colors and when they finally fell off she would rake them into a huge pile and run through it. But when she was in her late teens her parents packed everything up and moved their small family to Pittsburgh. "Sure, that would be fun. Which one would you want to go to?"
  10. Benny gave a shrug. He'd been to the museums plenty of time, especially with them so close to his campus. If he wasn't cramming extra studio hours in or eating at Lulu's (or even finding some place to take a nap) he could be found in the Carnegie Art Museum. He was sure she'd been there plenty of times if she was a Pittsburgh native. Many of the area schools planned field trips to the museums throughout all grade levels. But then, Ben wasn't entirely sure she was a Pittsburgh native. Perhaps it was her complexion or even the lightness of her blonde hair, but something told him Elizabeth wasn't from here. The twenty three year old should probably ask, but then, wouldn't that be rude? Whether Elizabeth, or Lizzie as he deemed her from the second he met her whether she liked it or not, knew it or not Benny didn't retain anything she said about herself. For all the brunette knew, she'd already told him. "Well, so long as you don't mind about missing out on the Science museum we could probably do both. I'd say all three but the science center is out by Heinz Field. But both the natural history and the art museums are literally down the road and across the street."

    Benny went up the three quick steps and held the door open for Elizabeth to enter the restaurant. He followed in behind her closely and looked about. The place wasn't too crowded. Any businessmen who had trekked down to Craig Street were gone to get back to their classes and most students from the nearby campuses were in a class right now. It was only roughly one thirty in the afternoon. The twenty three year old had told no one about his (unfortunate) engagement and so was slightly worried that someone would spot him with the blonde. So far, he didn't see anyone. That was a good sign. The hostess came up to them with a smile on her face, grabbing two menus and motioning for them to follow her to a table. It was then that someone called out his name. "Ben! Benny!" The twenty three year old whipped his head to the left to see a fellow Carnegie Mellon student. Nathan was the same age as Benny, but two years ahead in the architecture program. Benny put on a smile, despite the pit he suddenly felt in his stomach. He raised a hand in salute before turning away and following after Elizabeth and the server.

    He declined a menu, already knowing what he wanted. He fiddled with the straw in his glass of water, complimentary of the restaurant, while Elizabeth looked over the menu. The server came back and Benny ordered first. "Can I get uh, fried wantons, a hong kong chow fun beef noodle plate, and uh.. hm.. vanilla bean bubble tea." Benny was a sucker for any and all things vanilla flavored or scented. After she ordered as well, Benny tapped his fingers across the table, thanking the woman when his bubble tea and Elizabeth's drink came. He still felt incredibly awkward about this whole situation and didn't know how to break the tension of their lunch date. Benny sucked down some of his drink, the vanilla tea tasting just as good as usual. He choked slightly on one of the pearls as it shot through his straw into the back of his throat. Benny wiped is mouth on his napkin and the fried wantons came out. He gestured to Elizabeth to have some with him and sank his teeth into one himself. "You know, I know why I'm doing this. Mom and Roland are paying for school for me. But you... I can't figure out why you're being so damn obedient Lizzie."
  11. "Both is fine for me, as long as we have time," Elizabeth had never been to any of the Carnegie museums, so today was full of new adventures for her. Seeing that she had only lived in Pittsburgh about six years, four of which were spent commuting between her parent's home and college, she could never really find much time to do anything just for the fun of doing it. Which included taking trips to museums and other cool things that could be done while living there. Even when she was younger, living back in Wisconsin, she was rarely given the pleasure of going to museums and other public facilities. So of course she could feel some excitement and anticipation building up at the thought of maybe going to the museums after lunch.

    She gave Benny a polite nod to say thank you as they entered the restaurant. It was a nice little place and had exceeded her expectations. Not that she thought that he would take her to a cheap run down restaurant, it's just that she didn't know what to expect from a place that many college students eat at on a regular basis. So this was a nice surprise. Soon they were greeted with a pleasant hostess that guided them through the quiet restaurant to an empty table. As they walked Elizabeth heard Benny's name being called from across the room. Taking a quick glance over her shoulder she noticed it was a guy who looked around the same age as Benny, and assumed they must know each other from school. Thinking she'd give him some time to talk with his buddy she continued to follow the hostess to their table.

    After being handed a menu she studied it for a while before finally ordering the House Lomein, deciding to play it safe. "And I'll have the uhh, House Lomein,please. And to drink.. Coke or Pepsi, what ever you have is fine," she added with a smile, handing the menu over to the waitress. Not knowing what to say to get a conversation going she picked at her fingers until Benny's fried wantons came out and he said something she wasn't expecting. "I can't figure it out either, to be quite honest." Letting out an uncomfortable laugh she took a small bite of the offered wanton. Although she had said she didn't know why she agreed to the arranged marriage, there was a reason. Growing up her parents had always been very demeaning. Nothing she did was ever good enough for them. As a result of her failure to please her parents, they often gave her guilt trips. They would say they had given everything for her, their only daughter, and all they got in return were repetitive failures, despite Elizabeth's hardest efforts. And this marriage was another guilt trip. After all we have put up with over the years, this is the least you could do for us, Elizabeth. Her mother had told her one night over the phone before hers and Benny's first date. She hated to talk about her parents because in one form or another, her parents ways were exposed. Gaining her looks and words containing mass pitty, like she was a kicked puppy. There were also mumbles and grumbles about how evil and uncaring her parents must be. And she hated it. Even though her parents had kept her sheltered and on a leash all her life, there was still love in their complicated relationship. Not wanting to unintentionally reveal herself she promptly changed the subject. "So, uhh.. who was that guy back there."
  12. Benny had been hoping for a better explanation from Elizabeth, or any explanation at all. There had to be a reason. It wasn't like they had known each other before this. He could understand some compliance if there was a preexisting relationship. But having just met each other for the first time a few weeks ago, Elizabeth knew nothing about who he was as a person, or him of her for that matter. For all she knew, he could be an abusive prick. Benny could be some freak who kept nail clippings in jars under his bed or something. He wasn't either of those things, not in the longest shot. But she had no way of knowing. You couldn't trust the facades of people anymore, not in their society.

    The twenty three year old was going to push the subject. Benny wasn't one to be so easily deterred about something like this. But before he could keep on, Elizabeth asked about Nathan and successfully changed topics. For now at least. "Oh, him?" he said munching on a wonton. "Nathan. He's in the architecture program too. Only difference is that he's graduating come the end of next semester." There was a hint of bitterness in his voice at the end. Benny wouldn't deny that. He wouldn't often deny how he felt about something, even if he sometimes tried to mask it.

    It was nothing against Nathan. The two men were the same age and got on well to the point that it wasn't uncommon for them to be spotted out together on a Saturday night. But that was the problem. They were in the same program and the same age... But Nathan only had their current fall semester and the coming spring until graduation. Benny had three years at least. Even if it was advertised as a four year program, it was typically done in five. Benny was without a doubt envious of Nathan. His friend was exactly where Benny should be at this point in his life: preparing to graduate and going through the process of picking a grad school. Instead he was only a sophomore at twenty three. If you were close to Benny, you knew damn well he hated that fact.

    "He's a pretty good friend," he admitted, which was the truth. Even if the two only knew each other for a year now they were as close as they could be. Bu Benny wouldn't go so far as calling him his best friend. He already had someone who had that title, and that was Ryan. Ryan Powell and Benny had been best friends pretty much their entire lives, having met on the first day of kindergarten. They were inseparable until Ryan went off to Lock Haven University the year after they graduated high school. They still saw each other frequently. It was only a few hour drive either way to spend a weekend drinking and catching up.
  13. Elizabeth held her breath, waiting to find out if her topic change would be successful. And much to her relief, it was. As Benny talked about Nathan she could sense a hint of resentment or jealousy in his voice. Most likely from the fact that Nathan was in the ideal spot to graduate in Benny's mind. For the most part, she was pretty understanding of his circumstance and the frustration he experienced while being in that situation. But sometimes she feels that he just needs to forget about his late start and be thankful for being given the chance to fulfill his dream at all. Granted, she didn't know much about his situation, he was being forced to marry some strange girl he doesn't know or love, and his life isn't going according to plan so far. But sometimes, the way he talked about everything, made her feel that he wasn't fully appreciative of what he has been given. If she were given such an opportunity she would run with it and never look back.

    However, she tried not to be too judgmental considering she would be married to this man someday. "Why didn't you stop and talk with him? I wouldn't have minded," she shared, taking a sip of her soda. After saying the words out loud Elizabeth realized that he probably didn't care if she would have minded or not, and figured he probably hadn't told anyone about his engagement. And Lulu's, not being the place to spill the beans, he decided it would be best to avoid talking to him at all. The more the blonde thought about it, she started to become conscious of the fact that she hadn't told any of her friends about the engagement either. Not that she had many to tell.

    After she had moved to Pittsburgh when she was around 17 she was forced to leave all of her childhood friends behind. She kept in touch with a few of them, but the fire of their friendships could never be fully re-kindled, and eventually communication stopped completely, for most. Once moved to Pittsburgh she had trouble gaining new friends, considering the kids in this area were much for free spirited and rebellious compared to her small town Wisconsin friends. Having such strict parents, such as Elizabeth's, could be a real problem for a teenager trying to make new friends. Despite her struggles, she did manage to make a few close friends. Emma Hill and Cody Foster. Emma and Cody were the closest thing she had to siblings or understanding family members. And looking at her situation now, it's a mystery to her why she hasn't yet shared this information with them.
  14. Benny shrugged. "I can talk to him tomorrow. We've got some classes together, and well, we hang out a lot." Did Elizabeth really not understand why he could have not wanted to talk to his friend? Had she been telling all of her friends about their engagement? His body gave an involuntary shudder down his spine, the hairs on the back of his neck raising as he thought about that. Ben hadn't pegged her to be excited about their arrangement but he supposed, somehow, she could be. Benny continued on munching on the fried wantons until their food arrived, which he immediately dug into.

    "So," he said after a couple good forkfuls of noodles had been stuffed down his throat. "Any... plans this weekend?" Benny mentally slapped himself. He never was the best at small talk, even in situations he wanted to be in. However, he felt like he had just opened the door to invite her along, or at least have her thinking he was going to ask her to do something. It was, in fact, not the case. Ryan had called him the day before to let him know he was making the trip home to Pittsburgh that weekend. The two men had plenty to catch up on, and Ryan still hadn't been informed about Benny's engagement, something which Benny himself was dreading on explaining. Ryan knew the situation with Benny going to school. But he didn't know how Benny had suddenly came by the money to afford any school in the area, let alone Carnegie Mellon.
  15. Elizabeth nodded her head understandingly as she took another sip of her drink. She could tell that Benny was avoiding his friend on purpose. It was obviously not just the fact that he could converse with him at any other time he wanted to. And for some reason it kind of made her feel upset that she was that much of an embarassment to him. Then again, it probably wasn't her that was embarrassing him, but the arranged marriage. She kept sipping her drink until their food arrived, which she hesitantly tasted and found surprisingly delicious.

    Her head shot up as she heard Benny begin to speak, slowing the flow of food into her mouth, so she would be able to respond. "Oh," his words quite frankly surprised her. He never asked about her plans or anyting, maybe he was planning to ask her to spend some time together this weekend. "Um, no... No, not anything I can think of," she sputtered. "Why? Do you have any plans?" She didn't really know quite how to respond to his question. She would enjoy being able to spend some more time with Benny and get to know him a little better, but maybe it wasn't an invitation after all. Probably just small talk. It would be a very unlikely move on his part, so as fast as the excitement entered her it drained.