Merry in Mykonos by Aurora Paige




Out of pure embarrassment, I stayed low-key at my parents’ home for a few days, trying to forget what happened on my wedding day. I replayed that day over and over, and every time tears ran down my cheeks. What if Morgan didn’t interrupt the wedding, and Evan and I got married? Would we be happy? Would I ever find out he was cheating on me? There were so many thoughts running through my head. I was deprived of sleep, my mind was fuzzy, and I couldn’t think straight.

Knock. Knock.There was a light tap on the door.

“Anak? I cooked your favorite bistek and rice. Kain na,” my mom said from the other side of the door.

“I’m not hungry,” I said as I laid in bed, staring at the ceiling.

The door opened slowly. “Zoey, anak. You need to eat. I can’t remember the last time you had something in your stomach.”

“I thought I had enough fat on my body to keep me alive for another day,” I said as I turned away from her.

“Tigilan mo na ang sinasabi mong kalokohan,” my mom said sternly. Although she was only five feet tall, that Filipino glare she has given when she’s mad will make you think twice before messing with her.

“I didn’t say anything crazy. It’s facts, Mom.” I turned back to face her. “If you can’t tell, I’m not skinny. Not only have our relatives criticized my weight, you have done it too. And now you’re worried that I’m not eating?” Geez. I can’t please anyone.

“Please eat, okay? I’m worried about you.” Her eyes softened and a genuine look of concern fell over her face.

“Don’t worry about me. I’ll be fine.” The truth was, I wasn’t sure.

“Okay, anak. The food’s downstairs when you’re ready.”

“Thanks, Mom.”

Mom left the room and closed the door behind her.

I just laid there, thinking about how much I just wanted to get away and take a vacation. It was almost Christmas and I didn’t want to be stuck here with my family. Our Christmas gatherings are huge with at least fifty people, if not more. Filipino get-togethers, in general, are notorious for large gatherings. My mom always said if you invited one family, you had to invite them all. Now that I would be alone and single again, being with my family during the holidays was not my preference this year. I didn’t want to talk to anyone right now. I hadn’t even returned phone calls to Natasha. With my relatives always trying to give me advice, they would probably analyze what happened between Evan and me and try to set me up with their co-worker’s son because he’s a bachelor or because my relatives think I was old and should already be married with three kids. I’m only twenty-eight. I inhaled deeply and let out a loud sigh.

Oh shit!I just remembered that I was the one who booked our honeymoon. We were supposed to leave tomorrow night to Mykonos, Greece. I’ve always wanted to visit Greece and since it was Winter, I thought having the tropical vibes of the beach would be perfect and less crowded than visiting Santorini or Athens during this time of the year. I grabbed my phone and called my best friend.

“Hey, Natasha.”

“Hey, Zoey. How are you doing?” Natasha said.

“Sorry I haven’t returned your calls. I’ve been depressed since the wedding and didn’t want to talk to anyone.” I paused and let out a sigh. “Then I thought of what I needed right now…so…what are you doing tomorrow night until December thirtieth?”

“Umm…working? Why?”

“I so need to get away for the holiday. I can’t be here right now. I still have my reservation and plane tickets for what was supposedly for my honeymoon—”

“You’re going to Mykonos?!”

“Yes! And I want you to go with me.”

“You know I would, but I don’t think I can take time off on such short notice. It’s the holidays and work’s busy at the hospital. So many people had already requested their vacation time off. I was off last week to help you for your wed...I mean—”

“It’s okay, Nat. I knew what you were going to say. I appreciated your help last week. You’re the best Maid of Honor a bride could ever ask for. So, who should I ask to go with me then?”

“How about one of your cousins?”

I rolled my eyes. “No way. I wanted to get away from family right now.”

“I get it, Zoey…hmm…well… how about Gavin?”

“Your brother?”

“Yeah, what’s wrong with that? You’ve told me that he’s like an older brother you’ve never had. You’ve practically grew up with him.”

“I haven’t seen him in so long. Doesn’t he have a girlfriend? It’ll be weird.” I haven’t seen Gavin in over five years. We haven’t really talked since I gave him a letter confessing my feelings to him.

“He broke up with Penelope. You’re not the only one that found out their significant other cheated on them.”

“No freaking way!” I paused to think about it. “I don’t know, Nat. I haven’t really talked to him in a while.”

“He moved out of his apartment that he shared with Penelope and has been staying with my parents in San Francisco until he finds another place. Plus, he mentioned to my parents that his work was having a mandatory two-week shutdown during the holidays, so he has nothing to do right now.”

“Okay, fine. Would you mind asking him for me?”

“For you, Zoey, of course. But! If he says he’ll go, I’ll give him your number and you guys can coordinate things, alright?”

“Thanks, Natasha! You’re the best”

“I know! You don’t have to tell me twice.”

We both laughed and ended our call.

I still thought it would be weird, but at least I wouldn’t be alone if Gavin decided to go on vacation with me. Rumble. My stomach interrupted my thoughts. I got up from bed and took my mom’s advice for a change…I went downstairs and had something to eat.