Mom, I'm heading off to uni. Finished my breakfast," Chin announced as she grabbed her bag.
"Wait," her mother called out. "Today, we have an annual dinner at Mrs. James' place. You should be there by 8 pm. Understand?"
Chin hesitated. "I'll try, but I have an exam the day after tomorrow, so I need to study at the library."
Her mother's tone turned firm. "No event will last more than two hours. You must come to the party at 8 pm. It's non-negotiable. Understand?"
"Okay, Mom," Chin agreed reluctantly.
The scene shifted to the University of Chin, where she met her friend Elly.
"Chin, your parents are so controlling. I wish I never had to see their faces again. Just being near them gives me chills," Elly said.
Chin nodded in agreement. "I try to obey them as much as possible just to avoid their presence. They act like masters, not parents. They even ordered me to attend the dinner today, knowing I have an exam on Monday. If I score poorly, they'll scold me. People wonder why I'm so rebellious."
"But you should go to the dinner," Elly urged. "There are so many handsome boys there."
Chin sighed. "You know, Elly, I dislike rich people, handsome men, and pretty girls."
Elly chuckled. "Can I go instead of you?"
Chin shook her head. "My parents would kill me, and I have no money to support myself."
"Aw, my poor baby," Elly teased. "You deserve better."
That night, Chin arrived at the party wearing her favorite baggy jeans and an oversized shirt, true to her style. She wasn't one for exposing much of her body, but simplicity suited her.
She approached the corner where her mother was standing with Mrs. James and her daughter. All three women were dressed to the nines in fancy dresses and jewelry.
"Mom, I'm here," Chin announced.
Mrs. James commented, "Chin, what are you wearing tonight? It's a lavish party. Look around; everyone is dressed so beautifully."
Chin replied confidently, "I think I'm already pretty, and my beauty doesn't depend on dresses or makeup."
Mrs. James seemed taken aback. "You're quite straightforward, Chin. But you won't find a good match this way. Look at Lee; she got a boyfriend at the last dinner, and now they're planning to get married."
Chin smirked. "Good for you, Lee. I'm amazed you found someone who wants to marry you, not your family's business."
Lee retorted, "Well, Chin, you might end up with a psychopath or an antisocial person the way you repel everyone around you."
Chin quipped, "That would be great. I want to marry a psychopath or an anti-human person."
Chin's mother intervened, "Chin, can I talk to you for a minute?"
Chin agreed, "Sure, Mom."
After a brief conversation with her mother, Chin decided to leave the party. On her way out, she accidentally bumped into a guy in a black suit who was talking on the phone. He didn't look back, didn't apologize, and walked into the hall as if he were a secret agent on a mission, ignoring her.
Chin muttered, "What kind of lunatics come to this place with no manners? He should at least say sorry."
The chance encounter left her curious about the mysterious stranger and what kind of role he might play in her unpredictable life.
(End of Chapter 1)