Juanita’s Victories Chapter 19.Trott Bailey University
Written By Sher Trott Bailey.
Mario Martinez looked through all the news reports and updates coming through his phone. The latest hot news was the discovery of new continents by the Trott-Bailey Family. For days reports had been coming out of a new land discovered in the Indian Ocean overflowing with wealth. Outrageous claims and speculations kept going around of large precious stones just laying around, amazing unseen before animals and plants appearing on the land. Mass migration of bird species: flamingos, eagles, penguins, etc to the new continent. Throwing down his phone, Mario leaned back in his chair and sighed.
“ I can’t stand these people, life is always giving more to some people.” Mario thought grudgingly.
Gerta Martinez, his mother, looked up from her tea drinking and surveyed her son.
” What’s bothering you, Mario?” She asked in her direct manner
” Nothing mom, nothing,” Mario answered.
” It was clearly something you read. So what is it?” Gerta prodded.
” Can you believe a whole new continent has appeared? And guess who’s discovered it?” Mario Martinez said.
” Oh, them. Yes, I saw the news. Now nothing about the Trott Bailey Family surprises me. It’s clear that God is with them.”
” You go to church, your the head of several church committees, how come our family isn’t discovering new continents?” Mario questioned enviously.
” Son there is a difference between church-going and actual faith. I couldn’t tell you the last time I spoke to God. I can’t even pretend to know what it’s like to know God like that Family knows him.” Gerta said calmly.
” Do not work up yourself over matters which are beyond you, Mario.” His mother said raising one eyebrow at him and staring.
Truth be told, Mario was more perturbed about all the news he was hearing about Juanita and Salvano. He had heard about their budding relationship and Juanita moving out of her mother’s house from Maria Cortazar.
Sighing heavily again and throwing back his head, he slumped in his chair.
” Your campaign is going great. Elections will be called in February of next year. You are sure to be the next Prime Minister, so what’s that sigh for?” His mother pressed.
” I said it’s nothing mother,” Mario said softly but firmly, meaning he wanted an end to her questioning.
” Fine! Well, I have something I want to talk to you about. Something that’s been on my mind for a while.” Gerta said firmly to her son.
” Go ahead mom, I can’t stop you.” Mario quipped.
With raised eyebrows, Gerta Martinez placed aside her teacup. She leaned back in her chair, took in a deep breath of the fresh air around her, and began her speech.
” You have only one child and she has no interest in taking over the business nor does she show the business acumen to do so. You are still very young and handsome with a wonderful physique that you got from your father. It’s time to remarry and have some sons. The younger the girl the better. I don’t want to hear of any problems with some older woman having difficulties getting pregnant.” Gerta said curtly.
” You must think of the family’s name. Who will carry on you and your father’s legacy? Adrianna will get married and form her own family. Will a son-in-law take all your wealth?” Gerta asked pointedly, knowing where to strike her son.
” I hear you, mom. It’s not like I haven’t been thinking about remarrying.” Mario said sighing again.
” So? What’s the hindrance?” Gerta asked.
There was silence from Mario then another heavy sigh.
” It’s because you’ve set your heart on that Juanita girl right?”
A very startled Mario jumped up in his seat, he stared at his mother. He quickly composed himself again.
“How did she know?” he thought.
” I knew from the way you acted at the party. You couldn’t take your eyes off her, you fawned over her like a lovesick peacock. I know my son” Gerta said.
” So what’s the matter? The girl should be happy your giving her attention. Have you lost your charms?” Gerta asked.
” Mom this is very awkward to discuss with you,” Mario said vexedly.
” Mario, I’m the best person to discuss this with. I’m dispassionate and neutral. Which means I’m clear-headed in this matter, unlike you that’s caught up in emotions.” Gerta replied.
Sighing, Mario Martinez paused. Then after a time, he said,
” Well if you must know, Salvano has beaten me to it. He has started dating Juanita. From what I heard the girl likes him too.”
Knocking her hands down on the table, Gerta Martinez’s reaction was instant and bitter. She was like a lioness with a thorn in her paw and someone had disturbed the thorn. Her bitterness towards Leyla, her husband’s ex-mistress would not wane.
” How dare that little upstart even comes up in this conversation,” Gerta said.
” How dare he try to take away something from my son.” Gerta continued.
” Just like his mother, the apple doesn’t fall far from the horrid tree,” Gerta said angrily.
” What happened to you being dispassionate and neutral?” Mario mocked.
The two were interrupted by the incoming figure of Adrianna Martinez. Adrianna walked up to a table with a variety of breakfast foods and filled her plate with some cheese croissants and ham slices. She then took a seat beside her father and said,
” Good morning Grandmother, hi Dad.” Shoving her father by the shoulders.
” Good morning Princess,” Mario answered her with a smile, grabbing his daughter by the shoulders and flicking her nose.
” Daddy!!!! I’m too old for you to still be doing that” Adrianna complained.
“You’re never too old for a nose flick Princess,” Mario replied.
” Dad, when are you going to let me and my friends take a trip to see mom in France?” Adrianna asked poutingly.
” Well Princess, you act like I’m the hindrance….hasn’t it been your mom giving you excuses all the time. Plus I thought you were going to go off to college in London but now I hear you’ve changed your mind.” Mario answered.
” Yes, I no longer want to go to college. I’m going to open a designer boutique. I’ll shop all over Paris and Italy and bring back the finest dresses.” Adrianna said forcefully.
” Wow, how ambitious,” Gerta interjected sarcastically.
” Oh please Grandma, your just mad because I don’t want to sell wood and rubber for the rest of my life!” Adrianna angrily shot back.
” Meanwhile there are people out there doing cool things like shooting movies,” Adrianna mumbled loudly.
” And you choose to open a boutique. What’s cool about that?” Gerta said sarcastically.
” It’s better than being in our business.” Adrianna shot back.
” Our lumber and rubber business is what made this family its wealth,” Gerta replied calmly as though dealing with an irritable child.
” Dad’s fine with my choices and that’s all that matters,” Adrianna said.
” Well, your dad is getting remarried and going to have other children. At least they will make our family proud.”
” Mother!” Mario said sharply.
” Really Dad? You’ve found someone? I’m not mad at it. You are pretty handsome. I had hoped for a long time that you and mom might, just maybe get back together but I see mom doesn’t even want us. ” Adrianna said, her tone neutral. She had gotten over her mother’s absence and their divorce years ago.
” I’m sure you won’t like who he’s found,” Gerta interjected.
” Why are you always like this Grandma?” Adrianna said rolling her eyes at Gerta.
” Let dad tell his own story.” Adrianna continued.
” Really? You want to hear about your father’s fascination with a certain young Juanita?” Gerta said spitefully.
Mario Martinez could feel like one more strand of his hair turned grey. He could feel the electric shock from his brain literally course from his scalp into his hair follicles.
” What! What!” Adrianna exclaimed in disbelief.
” No! No, No, No,….. Dad No, Dad? Is it true? You like Juanita?” Adrianna asked in continued disbelief.
” Addy it’s not like anything has happened. I do like Juanita but she is with Salvano now.” Mario said to his daughter.
” Even if she wasn’t with Salvano Dad, you can like any woman but her. She is my enemy.” Adrianna shouted.
” Plus she’s my age, it would be almost like you’re dating me!” Adrianna continued on.
” No I will find some other woman for you, but get Juanita out of your head and heart Dad. Get real! It would never work out and you would ruin you and my relationship because I would never talk to you again if you were to marry Juanita. Juanita as my stepmother. Preposterous!” Adrianna Shouted banging her hands on the table.
” Ok Addy… calm down,” Mario said, unaware that his daughter felt so strongly against Juanita. If there was one woman in Mario’s life that took first place it was certainly his daughter Adrianna.
” Get her off your mind Dad. I promise you, I will set you up with better women for you. Just not Juanita! Okay?”
Looking at his discomfited daughter, Mario Martinez conceded his defeat. He knew already he was no match for Salvano anyway. Now his daughter was reacting this way. His mother was on his case about the family name and legacy. Maybe he should broaden his horizons and let go of this silly infatuation with Juanita.
” Ok Addy. Anything for you.” Mario finally said.
” Well, it seems Adrianna and I have a mutual mission in mind. We must both work together to find your father a new love interest and get him settled.” Gerta stated to her granddaughter.
” Why don’t we just make it into a competition grandma? Whoever gets Dad to fall in love first…wins.” Adrianna countered.
” Mhmm and what’s the prize?”
” Hello, I am sitting here,” Mario interjected looking left and right at the two women.
” Exactly son, so everything is clear,” Gerta replied.
“If I win and Dad gets married to any of my picks, I get to liquidate my shares in the family company and do whatever I want to do with my life and not a peep out of you about it,” Adrianna said.
” And if I win, you leave the company but you leave with nothing. Just your inheritance from your dad but no ownership in the company. You will sign over those shares to me. Deal?” Gerta replied.
” Deal!” Adrianna agreed.
Mario watched as the two main women in his life shook each other’s hands. He rolled his eyes and smirked.
“Hey he was open for love, maybe these two could really help him.” He thought to himself, internally perking up a bit.
Meanwhile with Salvano & Juanita.
” Don’t worry be happy! Your landlord says your rent is really late, he might have to litigate don’t worry….” Salvano sang as he read through Juanita’s menu.
” I love it, Juanita. Throw in a Mexican food day and it would take it over the top for me.” Salvano said to Juanita.
The two were on Juanita’s verandah. It had just stopped raining and everything around them was wet. The flowers and bushes sparkled green. They could hear crickets making their sounds.
“Well today you’re going to try some things off my menu,” Juanita said.
” What? But I didn’t see you cooking?” Salvano said completely surprised.
” I cooked before you came over, it’s a surprise. That’s why I’ve been keeping you on the verandah. I didn’t want you to smell the wonderful aroma of the food.” Juanita said.
‘ WOW, so what are my taste buds going to delight in today? Let’s see if you can cook.” Salvano said.
“You’re going to taste my salt codfish with roast breadfruit, my roasted crispy pork, my curried goat, and my Indian lemon rice. For dessert, you will have the sticky toffee pudding and for drinks…the pineapple mojitos.” Juanita said, breezing through her menu.
” Wow I can’t wait! so much food for you and me?” Salvano asked.
“Why not? Abundance always.” Juanita replied.
An hour later a stuffed and satisfied Salvano was licking his fingers. He was truly satisfied.
” That curry goat Shaaat!! Mad ting! Fire! Juanita that was the stand-out dish. The saltfish was nice but that curry goat and Indian lemon rice were mouthwatering. The crispy pork was well seasoned and tender. I’ve never had pork like that before. I also loved the sticky toffee pudding.” Salvano said.
” Even more than Fred’s cornmeal pudding?” Juanita asked with a smirk.
” There is no comparison, Fred is a distant last place,” Salvano replied.
” The curry was really nice, even I surprised myself. Wooh! I’m tired.” Juanita said leaning back on their outdoor swing bench.
Juanita cleared away the dishes. She politely refused Salvano’s offer to wash up. When she returned, they started talking again.
” You know I’ve been meaning to ask you, why you got into the beetroot powder business?” Juanita asked.
” Well, long story short, when I got my land there were lots of wild beetroots growing on it. I loved blending beets with ripe bananas to make smoothies. The drink made defecating easy. Then some athletes I knew wanted some and the idea for the powdered version came.” Salvano said.
” So do you do take a bunch of supplements for your physique or are you more natural,” Juanita asked.
” My body comes from my active lifestyle, I’m not big brawny like those fake bodybuilders and I don’t take any form of steroids. By the time I was done working in construction, swimming, and rowing I was ripped. It’s more of a sustained physical lifestyle, you can’t just get a ripped body overnight.” Salvano explained.
” Great cause I was wondering if I had to be careful about the food and drinks I served you,” Juanita revealed.
” No, I’m no crazy health nut. As you can see I eat cakes and I love your cooking.” Salvano said.
The couple soon went inside and settled down on a comfortable new couch to watch a Russian movie with subtitles. Juanita snuggled up into Salvano’s arms. She felt so content.
” Juanita, I don’t want to be going home from you anymore,” Salvano said.
” I don’t want you to leave either Salvano, you can stay in the guest room.” Juanita quickly replied.
” Not just for tonight though Juanita, but forever. I want to be with you, be around you all the time. Will you become Mrs.Juanita Martinez? I love you girl! I can’t keep it in any longer!” Salvano said and pulled out a beautiful engagement ring.
Juanita melted and started kissing him all over his face and neck. Then she said,
” Oh Salvano, Yes! It was always Yes. Salvano I feel the same way. I crave your company, I don’t want to separate either. So yes I want to be Mrs.Martinez. Let’s make it official hubby. ” Juanita happily replied.
” Can we agree, to not have a long-drawn-out engagement?” Salvano asked.
” Agreed. Let’s get married by the end of next month, what do you say? I don’t want anything big, nor do I want a big dress. Simple, intimate, and beautiful will do. We can get married at your house.” Juanita said happily.
” Well, I don’t want you to stress yourself about organizing our wedding. I k-n-o-w you! will become totally engrossed in wedding planning. Let me hire a wedding company to decorate my property and cater the wedding, make the cake, etc.” Salvano said.
Juanita pouted a bit at what he said. Seeing her expression Salvano continued,
” Juanita, you can’t get caught up in doing everything….you know that….right babe?”
” What do you mean by that Salvano?”
” İ mean you’re a great cook, but that doesn’t mean you should go get lost in the kitchen now for the wedding, your boutique hotel, or even as my wife,” Salvano said.
” But I’m used to being hands-on Salvano,” Juanita replied.
“You have to hire a chef, delegate tasks. Your a leader, so you should lead the team, not get caught up on being hands-on with everything, or else you will burn out.” Salvano advised.
Smiling Juanita said,
‘ Sounds like my own advice to you has come around full circle to me. I know, I know…your absolutely right. Even now with the clothing business I have been feeling somewhat stretched.” Juanita admitted.
” Well let’s spend time together talking about how we can make it easier. İ want us to enjoy life together as husband and wife. That means we need plenty of free time with each other and not bring any stress from our businesses into our household.” Salvano said.
” You have so much on your plate too Salvano, I mean it’s one year closer to the Olympics- so won’t you have to increase your training?”
” No sweetheart. I will tell you another secret, my baby. The Australian guy with the current world record time… well İ have been able to beat his time consistently by three minutes ever since I started rowing. That’s without even exerting myself too much.”
” What! What the fuck is this shit?” Juanita exclaimed like she always did when her mind was truly blown away.
Slapping Salvano on the shoulders, her eyes wide and mouth open, Juanita exclaimed.
” Are you even human? What an outstanding and excellent man you are.”
” İt seems you really like me, Miss Juanita!” Salvano replied.
” İ like you immensely and I love you,” Juanita said softly kissing him all over his face again.
” Ok. It’s a deal. We can go to the wedding planner together and make our choices.” Juanita then said.
” Well you already created your dream menu, so food decisions are already made.’ Salvano said.
“You’re so right, I wonder if Ms. Mac would want to do the cooking?” Juanita asked.
“İ can ask her if you want. If not I know good caterers.” Salvano said.
” Who are we inviting?” Juanita asked.
” You know my list is very short. İt will probably be only my farm family and Marcus. İ will invite my mother out of courtesy but I won’t bank on her coming. She is a feckless person.” Salvano said.
What does feckless mean? Juanita asked.
” Unreliable,” Salvano answered
Nodding her head as she listened to him, Juanita replied,
” My list is short too, Meera is off to college. Michelle is gone too. I’m not inviting my mom. I guess I could invite some of the girls from the Estate who worked with me. I will invite Lizzie. My friends and my family list is very short. But I don’t care, I’m actually happier.” Juanita said wrapping her arms around Salvano.
” Well, we are both agreed then,” Salvano said.
” Next question, where will we live? I mean I just got settled in here” Juanita asked.
” İ can live here with you. İt’s an exciting new challenge to build up this place. Plus if you’re happier here then I’m happy too. I’m not tied to my house which is now also your house.”
” Who will manage your farm if you’re not there?” Juanita asked.
” The farm is a well-oiled machine. The men know what to do, plus it’s not like I’m going to a whole other different country. Don’t worry we will live here, and when we feel like it, we live at the other house.” Salvano assured her.
” Ok,” Juanita said smiled brightly.
The two planned their wedding together and finally, the day came. Juanita Cortazar was wedded to Salvano Martinez in the month of March 2027. Contrary to Salvano’s expectations, his mother Leyla did attend his wedding. She behaved herself well and welcomed Juanita. İn her heart, she envied the obvious love she saw between her son and Juanita. Never had she truly loved any of the men she had been with, it was always about the money.
İronically she thought to herself,
” Here I am at my son’s wedding and I’m filing for my divorce.”
“İt’s too late to change now Leyla. At least she would get a good settlement out of this divorce.” She thought comfortingly to herself.
Leyla had sized up the wedding, everything had been elegant but not posh. The food was delicious and the vibe of the wedding was comfortable and happy. Truly it had been the only sincere wedding she had ever attended, including her own.
She had shrewdly sized up her daughter-in-law. Clearly, Juanita was no push around. She had never been able to control her son either.
“Well, these two are out of the influence of their parents, together in unity. What a force!” Leyla had thought.
Written By Sher Trott Bailey. Mario Martinez looked through all the news reports and updates coming through his phone. The latest hot news was the discovery of new continents by the Trott-Bailey Family. For days reports had been coming out of a new land discovered in the Indian Ocean overflowing with wealth. Outrageous claims and…Read MoreRead More