When they first saw him walking through the door, they couldn’t believe their eyes. Was that really the man their daughter had chosen? What did she even see in him? Was she just trying to piss them off?
But that same night, everything would become clear. Just after a few hours, something happened that let them know what the man had done to get their daughter wrapped around his finger.
Thomas and Hellen Ford were a couple in their 60s residing in Manhattan, New York. They weren’t actually natives of the city; both were born and raised in Memphis, Tennessee, but moved to the Big Apple almost 40 years ago.
During that time, they had gone from rags to riches: now, they were a part of the city’s elite and one of the wealthiest and most well-known individuals in their community. But not many people knew what had been the key to their rapid and implacable social rise.
Thomas was a big construction tycoon in the city and had a hand in most of New York’s major construction projects. He had started off as a run-of-the-mill contractor and worked his way to the very top of the industry.
However, his success was often the subject of several rumors and speculations; not everyone believed that Thomas had amassed his fortune in a strictly legit way.
Nonetheless, the truth is that none of those rumors had even been proven to be fair. Maybe they were just due to Thomas Ford’s origins.
Among some circles, he was still considered a newcomer. Some still thought of him as that upstart Southern boy who had moved to a city that would sooner or later prove itself too much for him to handle.
Still, Thomas had reached his position just thanks to his own merits, and there didn’t seem to be anything threatening to throw him off his throne in the near future.
But there was one thing that worried Thomas and his wife day and night. After all, there was a way that the empire they had built over 40 years may come crumbling down fastly. That possibility quickly became the reason for many sleepless nights and long conversations for the couple.
One thing that worried them was what would happen to their empire after passing away. They only had one daughter, Katy, whom they loved with all their hearts.
However, Katy didn’t seem too interested in her father’s business. She worked at an office as a data analyst, and she seemed to be happy with how things were in her own life. If only she married a man who would be able to keep it afloat after Katy’s parents were gone! But that was another problem.
Marriage didn’t seem to be on Katy’s mind either. Thomas and Hellen had thought of different candidates for her daughter to marry, most of them sons of other businessmen Thomas was friends with.
But none of those seemed to be of Katy’s liking. The situation was starting to become really stressful for Thomas and Hellen; one day, they gave their daughter an ultimatum.
“Honey, you’re 28 already. We think it’s time for you to start thinking about marriage,” Hellen said to her daughter over breakfast one morning.
“If you’ve been thinking of someone, we’ll be happy to hear about it. But in the meantime, maybe we should start inviting some guys we think could be a good fit for you for dinner and see how you two get along. This Friday we’ll be inviting Steve, you know, Mr. Arnold’s son. OK?”
“You’re talking like I don’t have a choice,” Katy sighed. “If you keep doing this, I’ll just take the first guy I find on the street and marry him just so you leave me alone” She left the table and went to work, slamming the door behind her.
During her whole trip on the subway, she was thinking about what her mother had just said to her. Why couldn’t her parents just leave her to live her own life the way she wanted? But then, she saw someone right after leaving the subway and instantly devised a plan.
Right after leaving the subway station, she spotted Radric, a guy she had been introduced to by one of her friends at a party last weekend. She hollered at him, and instantly, she suggested to him something crazy.
She proposed to him to go to her parents’ house for dinner that same Friday and pretend they were engaged just to spite them! To her surprise, Radric quickly accepted, like he was used to playing those kinds of farces. That Friday, when he walked through the Fords’ door unannounced, Katy’s parents couldn’t believe their eyes. And that wasn’t even the worst part.
Steve, Hellen and Thomas’ preferred candidate, was already there with his parents! As they saw Radric sitting at the table with them, they couldn’t help but wonder what the heck was going on.
Suddenly, right after they were done with the appetizers, Katy rose up her glass and tapped it with a fork, trying to get everyone’s attention. What she said immediately after left everyone at the table bewildered.
“The reason I invited Radric to dinner tonight is that I want to let everyone know something. We got engaged just this week. He’s the man I want to spend the rest of my life with.” Hellen, Thomas, and the Arnolds couldn’t believe what they were hearing.
Was that man really who their daughter wanted to marry? That man who had come to dinner in street clothes and introduced himself as a party and show promoter? “Well, I guess we’re wasting our time here then. I wish you two good luck,” Steve said with a sarcastic grin before getting up and walking out of the flat, escorted by his parents. But Hellen and Thomas were in for another surprise.
For the rest of the dinner, they were amazed by Radric’s manners and exquisite conversation. Clearly, they had misjudged the young man. They didn’t expect him to be able to conduct himself among wealthy people like them.
But in comparison to Steve’s entitled attitude and lack of manners, they were left with a good impression, unaware that it was all a charade. When Radric and Katy went out after dinner, they couldn’t stop laughing. But when Katy asked why he had accepted her suggestion so quickly, she was shocked by his response.
Radric came from a wealthy family as well. Like Katy, he was often pressured by his parents to live up to the family standards, which often collided with what Radric actually wanted in his life. In the end, he had managed to work in the field he was the most attracted to, even if it wasn’t as profitable or prestigious as his dad’s industry.
Instantly, he sympathized with Katy’s situation and felt like he had to help her teach her parents a lesson. But that wasn’t all.
After the event, Radric and Katy discovered that they had many things in common and that they liked each other quite a lot. They started dating, and shortly after, they actually got engaged. Needless to say, Thomas and Hellen were even happier and more relieved after they found out about Radric’s actual story, as well as his intelligence and willingness to learn and help Thomas with his business.
And there was more than that. Thomas also realized that he had been wrong to judge others by their appearance, just like he had been judged by other people in the construction business due to his origins. From that moment, the Fords realized that it was not on them to direct their daughter’s life and that she could teach them a thing or two.