“I want to study here, Father!”
“Alexander Constantine, there will be no ifs, and don’ts and buts, you are to go to France and that is where you will continue medicine, am I understood?” Michael Constantine’s voice rose as his blood pressure shot up as well, reddening his face in anger. “You only wish to stay here for that filthy commoner!”
“I love her!” Alexander retorted, trying once more to make his father let him do what he wanted.
“I DISAGREE!” Michael boomed angrily, tipping over an expensive vase to the ground, smashing the porcelain beauty to dusty pieces. “You love the high school granddaughter of a lower-middle-class toymaker? That is exactly why I am sending you away! You are never getting near that low-life ever again!”
“I refuse to leave the country!” Alexander stood his ground.
“You dare deny what I want?!” he was angry, absolutely angry, and he was worrying about his heart. It had been ages since he had last been this angry at his son. Of course, he was always angry at work, but never this angry. “I know what the best is for you!”
“I beg to differ, Father! I am capable of correct decisions for myself!” said Alexander.
“You make correct decisions, Alexander, not the best ones. And as your Father, I make the decisions for you! Or are you unaware that you are still a minor?” Michael knew Alexander’s age would get him to stand down. “You still have three years before you can gather the courage you need to disobey me. And by then, you will still have three to seven years before you finish your course. You are going to France, and that is final! Do I make myself clear, young man?”
Alexander let out a breath, calming himself down. “Crystal clear, Father,” he walked out of Michael’s study in a composed manner, as if he had not gotten into an argument with his father.
He entered his room, and while growling, kicked his chamber doors in anger. He had to talk to Clarisse. He just had to spend his last night with her, and he would stop at nothing, just so he could get to his loved one, to touch her, and hold her close.
But what about Adam? His father certainly did not mention anything about his dear little brother. Would that mean that he would be leaving alone? Yes. Yes it did. He would not be able to take care of the young Constantine if he were to continue his medicine. It would mean that he could unconsciously neglect him while he immersed himself in studying so much in so little time. However, he had to sacrifice.
Alexander didn’t want time to go to waste. It was already nearing nine in the evening, and he had to leave early in the morning for his flight to the west. He quickly changed out of his home uniform, which was kind of an all white with the hemlines of the clothing with gold streaks. He got in some below the knee shorts, sneakers, a blue designer shirt, and a black hoodie. Alexander grabbed one of his car keys, phone and wallet without bothering to look at what car he had chosen after just a spray of perfume.
As he ran down the marble stairs, a voice called to him. “And what do you think you’re doing this late?”
Alexander turned around and looked up. “Something you have just forbade me to do five minutes ago.” And he ran out the door.
“Alexander! ALEXANDER! Alexander Constantine you come back here right now!”
He didn’t listen, and let his father’s voice fade into the distance as he ran out into the grounds. He looked at the keys in his hands. The Mercedes Benz SL550. He ran to the black car’s direction, and getting in it quicker than the servants running after him. He drove, and saw the gate already opening before he could get to the sensors to get them open. Someone knew he was going out, and that he was on his side. He couldn’t help but smile as he screeched the black car out of the estate.
He thought of getting Clarisse flowers before he left. And he had a good idea. He floored it, and left a smoke of dust on the road as he sped to a flower shop. But it was already nine; most of the shops must have already closed by now. He smirked. A store would open if they knew it was Alexander Constantine knocking on their door.
Then it hit him. He didn’t have to disturb anyone he didn’t know this late at night. He knew someone who ran a flower shop, and he was thankful that he was the younger brother of a classmate who was in most of his classes. He grabbed his phone from his jacket pocket and called the number stored in his phonebook. He put the phone to his ear, and heard the other line ringing.
“Come on, pick up!”
There were a few more rings, and someone picked it up. 'Hello?'
“David! Is Colin asleep yet?” Alexander quickly asked, turning onto a road.
'Alex? Colin? No, not yet. I’ll go get him.'
'Hey, Alex? What’s up?'
“I know you’ve been closed for about two hours now, but would you mind selling me a bouquet of roses this late?”
“No, Colin, it’s actually a going away present.”
'WHAT?! You come over here right now, mister!'
Alexander gradually let the car slow down. “I’m already outside your shop,” he parked the car right in front of the shop and killed the engine. Alexander stepped out, and David was the one who let him in. “Good evening, sorry for the disturbance,”
“So what’s this about leaving? You’re not leaving Clarisse a bouquet of roses outside her window and leave to wherever part of the world, are you? Because if you will, I swear I will personally skin you alive when you get back!” an angry Colin stormed in the shop from the back.
David rolled his eyes. “Calm down, little brother,”
“Don’t tell me to calm down, big brother!” Colin snapped.
“You still have that artificial rose I let you keep?” asked Alexander. “The one that looks so real?”
“Have it mixed up with another eleven roses.”
“Why?” David asked as he prepared what Alexander asked for. “You said you wanted a dozen, which is twelve, not eleven.”
“It will all make sense when you decide to meet Clarisse tomorrow.” Alexander took out his wallet, and gave David a few notes as Colin slipped the artificial rose in the middle of all the real roses and tied a purple ribbon around the stems wrapped in white paper.
“Wait a sec; I’ll go get change-”
“No. Keep the change. I am in debt,” Alexander took the roses from David’s hands as he pocketed his wallet. “Oh, Colin, will you take care of Clarisse for me?”
“Yes, big brother and I will.” he nodded
“Thank you.” And Alexander left the shop with the flowers in hand. That ‘thank you’ was the most sincere thank you Alexander had given to another person other than Clarisse.
He thought about what he was going to say when he was about to face Clarisse with the roses as he drove to Wymarc Game Shop. He wanted to say everything he felt, but he didn’t have the luxury of time to do that. If he spent hours out that night, his father would give him a heavier punishment. And being away from the person he loved was punishment enough.
He stood before the shop door, and pushed the doorbell. The light upstairs lit up, and a few moments later, so did the shops, revealing an old man in pajamas opening the door. Grandpa opened the door for Alexander and let him in.
“Good evening, Sir,” said Alexander, standing before the old man. “I’m sorry, but may I please see your granddaughter for a while? I know it’s already late, but it is quite an important matter,”
“Yes, of course.” Grandpa quickly pulled him in.
“Sorry for the disturbance, Sir,”
“She’s upstairs playing with Millicent,” he told him, and led him upstairs, to a room beside Clarisse’s. “They’re in there,”
“Thank you, Sir,” he bowed, and the old man bowed back before going back into his room. He knocked on Millicent’s door, and proceeded to enter. “Millicent?” he called out and a little girl the age of five ran to him.
“Hey, Millicent,” he kept the flowers behind his back and knelt to Millicent’s level. “I need to speak with Clarisse, would you be kind enough to stay with Grandfather for a while?” Alexander asked her, and the cute girl quickly went over to the old man’s room.
“Alexander, what are you doing here this late?” Clarisse asked, and it was in fact late. She and Millicent were already getting ready for bed. “Don’t you have school tomorrow?” Alexander went in the room and closed to the door. He gave the roses to Clarisse. “Aaww, Alexander, how sweet of you, thank you.” She gave Alexander a kiss on his cheek. “They’re beautiful!”
Alexander didn’t know how to tell her what was going to happen, so he started with her name, without even having the courage to look at her. “Clarisse,”
“Father is sending me away to France to continue medicine.” And that was when he looked at Clarisse.
“Wh-what?” Clarisse’s eyes started to water. “Y-You’re leaving?” she asked. “Is this what these flowers are for?! A going away gift?!” Clarisse couldn’t describe how much she wanted to throw those roses back at Alexander’s face, but she didn’t, and she waited for an explanation.
Alexander took the flowers and set them on the bed, then held Clarisse close to his chest. “I love you so much…so very much…”
Clarisse wet Alexander’s blue shirt, and she didn’t care that he did. “Please don’t leave…just please don’t leave…I love you too much…”
Alexander cupped Clarisse’s face, and stared into her deep amethyst eyes. “Don’t cry, love, those roses, I will love you until the last one dies.” He let go of him, and left the Wymarc household, leaving Clarisse sobbing uncontrollably.