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A Suitable Contract for the CEO

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"What madness! Why would anyone want to get married so young, even if it's just for mere interest?" That's what Brenda Harper used to think until her life started becoming an unbearable hell, and, desperate to get out of her predicament, she accepted what she had initially vehemently refused. She was carried away by her desire to be free, receiving a tempting offer that she didn't hesitate to take advantage of, not even considering that she hadn't even seen the face of her new "husband." But that wasn't the worst part; the man was, in her opinion, unbearable. A certain Giovanni Romano, who will make Brenda live up to her surname by trying to make her life impossible. "If you're going to kill me, let it be with kisses, darling," the Italian laughed boldly.

Chapter 1

Chapter 1: "The Matrimonial Agreement"

In an elegant summer salon of Brenda Harper's modest home, Giovanni Romano sat across from her, determined.

Brenda, with her bold and resolute gaze, watched him, trying to hide her surprise at seeing Giovanni after so many years.

He was no longer the awkward boy with black hair and a cold gray gaze she remembered, but a man with a demeanor that gave him an unmatched allure.

"Well, Brenda. Are you sure you want to do this?" Giovanni spoke first, attempting to break the ice.

"Yes, I'm sure," she replied, maintaining a firm tone. She wasn't going to show him her doubts or her fear of failure. Not to him.

She had been searching for work all week without success, feeling suffocated by her parents' overprotection.

That's not to mention their desire for her to marry at a young age to any old fat, wealthy man.

"Alright, let's begin then."

Giovanni looked... quite good. He was an attractive and young man, willing to enter into a quick marriage just to climb the ranks in his family's company.

That suited Brenda just fine.

Once they were clear on their decision, they began to discuss the terms of their contract marriage. Brenda, with a cup of tea in her hands, mentally reviewed the conditions she was going to propose.

The longing for freedom was stronger than any hesitation she might have.

On the other hand, Giovanni, who felt a mix of nerves and excitement at the idea of a promotion in his family's company, was willing to accept the conditions his future wife proposed.

"One of my conditions is that we won't have s*x," Brenda proposed, "any romantic approach of any kind is prohibited... unless strictly necessary," she cleared her throat a bit, uncomfortable just imagining it, "Obviously, we'll have to pretend in front of others, but when we're alone, we can go back to being complete strangers. You can have your affairs as long as they're not in the place where I live, you have to be discreet, okay? And lastly, most importantly; we can't fall in love."

Giovanni nodded silently, after Brenda laid out her conditions.

He could carry on with his life almost as if nothing had changed; avoiding falling in love wouldn't be a problem for him, and as for s*x, the last thing he wanted was for Brenda to feel uncomfortable.

"I agree, Brenda," he replied confidently, appreciating for a moment the determination and resolve in the intelligent woman's gaze before him.

As the conversation progressed, they both realized that their aspirations weren't so different. Perhaps they were more alike than they thought.

Although Giovanni knew it wasn't ethical or fair to his future wife, he couldn't help but think about maintaining his false marriage of convenience while continuing to enjoy his clandestine relationship with Fiorella Mancini.

Fiorella's simplicity and authenticity contrasted sharply with the woman he was about to marry.

"There's no comparison between them," he thought that this agreement would be a piece of cake.

At the end of the meeting, a relative peace filled the room. Brenda and Giovanni were ready to face this marriage. The next chapter of their lives had just begun.

"Well, Giovanni. Let's do this," Brenda concluded, shaking the Italian's hand and sealing the verbal contract with a confident smile.

"Agreed, future wife," he said in a mocking tone that she didn't like at all. However, Brenda forced a smile.

That day they said goodbye, while Brenda's parents were almost starting a celebration for achieving their goal of marrying their daughter to a wealthy man.

They were the ones who really wanted to get their hands on the Romano family fortune.

Days passed, and Giovanni's mother agreed to organize the wedding for her future daughter-in-law, happy that her son was settling down and becoming the president of the company.

Giovanni used to reassure himself that it would be easy, that he would practically have an existence independent of Brenda's.

Meanwhile, with patience and tact, he would climb the ranks in his family's company.

Eventually, he could divorce and marry Fiorella, the beautiful and passionate Italian who occupied his thoughts and heart.

However, he couldn't help but compare them in his mind; Fiorella, with her strong Italian character and love for life, contrasted sharply with Brenda, the simple American girl.

He suspected that Brenda was materialistic, concerned only about the family fortune. But he tried to be kind to her, despite his critical thoughts and somewhat distant treatment.

A few days before the wedding, he had gone to visit to keep up appearances in front of others and finalize some details of their impending union.

"Brenda, what do you want to do someday?" Giovanni asked during one of their rare dinners together.

Brenda looked up, seeming surprised by his question. She drew a soft smile on her face before responding.

"Well, I really would like to study art," she said, cheeks slightly flushed. "I've always dreamed of that."

Giovanni was surprised, realizing that Brenda was more than just a pretty face.

She had dreams and aspirations beyond the superficial appearance of her life. However, he remained cautious, hiding his true feelings behind courtesy.

"I hope that dream comes true for you," Giovanni said, smiling. Unbeknownst to him, he harbored a hint of respect and understanding towards her.

In every conversation with Brenda, he discovered something new. However, his dream of being with Fiorella did not fade.

He regarded his marriage as a formality, a necessary step in his career.

He convinced himself that he would be able to maintain a balance, that he would be able to meet Brenda and her family's expectations while secretly loving Fiorella.

The night before leaving for Italy, Brenda tossed and turned in bed, trembling with fear at what she had done. But there was no turning back... and she didn't want to.

The weight of her decision weighed heavy on Brenda's chest as she lay awake in the darkness of her room. Doubt plagued her, questioning the path she had chosen.

Was agreeing to this marriage the right thing to do, was she sacrificing her own happiness for the sake of her parents' ambitions?

Despite her fears, a stubborn determination flickered within her. She couldn't deny the sense of liberation that came with breaking free of her parents' expectations, even if it meant entering into a contractual union she hadn't thought of before.

But as she stared at the ceiling, the enormity of her choice weighed on her. Giovanni's mocking tone, his aloofness...all pointed to a future she wasn't sure she was ready for.

Yet, amidst the turmoil of her emotions, there was a glimmer of hope. A little voice whispered to her that maybe, just maybe, this arrangement could lead to something more than she had ever imagined.

Taking a deep breath, Brenda made a silent promise to herself. She would face any challenge that came her way with courage and resilience. After all, she had come this far and there was no turning back now.

Chapter 2

Chapter 2 - The Wedding

When they disembarked from the plane at Turin airport, only Giovanni's mother was there. 

She excused her son, saying he had to carry out some last-minute preparations, and accompanied them to the hotel, leaving them there and giving them directions to the courthouse.

After lunch, Brenda's mother insisted she go to the hotel's salon and start getting ready early, but she refused. 

She decided to do her hair herself as usual and put on the simple white dress she had bought, rejecting the ostentatious wedding dress desired by her ambitious parents.

After taking a taxi, they headed to the courthouse.

Brenda got out of the vehicle and began to answer greetings from people she didn't know, elegant and refined people who had her parents ecstatic and herself on the verge of vomiting.


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