The Billionaire's Instant Bride

By: CJ Howard

She got up and left her computer to take a break and think about everything that was tugging at her mind. She made herself a cup of tea and checked on her grandmother. Calista was in the garden, kneeling on her little rug before some plants that she was caring for. Callie smiled when she saw her. It was where her grandmother belonged; there in the garden, and as Callie watched her, she began to think that no sacrifice would ever really be too great to keep her grandmother there until the end of her days.

They had a quiet dinner together again and neither of them brought up the issues with the back taxes on the house. They talked instead of Callie’s classes at school and what she would be doing in them. After they ate, Callie went back up to her room and was sitting on her bed thinking about the Bride Bidder app when Raina called her.

Answering the phone, she felt a little relief at hearing from someone who she knew was completely on her side.

“Hey Callie,” Raina began. “I just wanted to check in with you. I’ve been working on this and I have to tell you, it’s not looking good. I’ve tried just about everything I can think of, and there’s just nothing out there for what you two are going through. I’m shocked. What happens to these old people? The city just takes their homes from them and kicks them out onto the street? That’s the craziest thing I’ve ever heard! Who kicks old people out? Most of what I’ve found is more for mortgages that are in trouble, and not so much taxes. There’s not anything that I can see that would help you both.”

Callie bit at her lower lip. “Well… I might have found one thing. It’s the only thing that even sounds like it might work a little.”

“Yeah? What did you find?” Raina asked interestedly.

Sighing, Callie bit her lower lip a little and explained. “Well, I found this website… it’s kind of a funny thing, you know, you see them on the television all the time, and I see ads for them on social media…” she trailed off a little.

Raina picked up that she was thinking of something unusual and it sounded in her voice. “What? What is it?” she asked with a keener interest.

“Well,” Callie said quietly, “it’s an app called Bride Bidder. There are wealthy guys who bid on women to be their wives. Sort of an instant bride thing.”

The other end of the line was silent for a moment. Callie knew she had dropped a little bomb.

Raina finally responded. “I’ve heard of those things. You’re seriously thinking of doing an instant bride contract? Really? Isn’t that kind of like… selling yourself?” Raina’s displeasure was crystal clear through the phone.

Callie had guessed that Raina wouldn’t like the idea, but she had put some thought into it and was looking for a little honest feedback. She knew that she’d get that from her best friend.

“Well, yes and no. I would get to choose the guy I like best, and some of the men don’t want a conventional wife, some are looking for other kinds of roles that a wife could fulfill. Caretakers and companions and things like that. They’re all a little bit different. The thing is, the money would be there right away if I decided to accept any of the proposals, and then I could save the house before the end of the month. I haven’t found anything else have you?” she asked curiously.

Raina groaned. “No… I haven’t found anything else. It just seems like a big chance for a one-time fix. I mean… it’s marriage. That’s huge.”

“Yeah, I realize it’s a big sacrifice, and I guess this isn’t something I would normally consider, but the circumstances are pretty important right now, and I have to consider that. There is so much at stake here. I mean, grandma can’t lose her house. Where would she go? Where would I go? This is our home. We can’t lose it. There is no other option that I can see.

So, I guess I start a profile, I put a minimum bid, at least one that would be enough to pay the taxes and the bills and still have money left over for grandma so she doesn’t have anything to worry about. I mean, that’s not an ideal situation, but it seems like it might be a viable option. It isn’t just a one-time fix. It would take care of things for a long time, maybe even for the rest of my grandma’s life if I do this. That bears a lot of importance to me; knowing I wouldn’t have to worry that anything like this might ever come up again. It’s peace of mind.”

Callie realized as she said it, that it was what she had been thinking since she had researched the website and app. More than anything, it would be peace of mind for her, and for her grandmother, and there was no price tag for that.

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