Wedding photographer | Shutterstock
Wedding photographer | Shutterstock

Wedding Photographer Destroyed Her Friends' Marriage With Just One Wedding Photo – Story of the Day

Yevhenii Boichenko
Mar 05, 2024
09:39 A.M.
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Hanna is scared to step to the altar where her beautiful and rich groom awaits her. Suddenly, one photo from her friend's camera reveals her ex-boyfriend, who disappeared a year ago, came to the wedding. Hanna decides to find out what happened to him and why did he leave her without a word.


The morning sun cast a gentle glow over the bustling wedding venue, bathing everything in a warm, golden light. It was a beautiful day, seemingly perfect for a wedding.

The garden was decorated with white roses and lilies, their petals swaying slightly in the gentle breeze. The chairs were lined up with precision, each adorned with a satin ribbon, waiting for guests to fill them.

At the front, an elegant arch stood covered in a cascade of flowers and greenery, framing the altar where the ceremony would take place.

In the midst of all this beauty, Hana stood, a picture of elegance in her traditional Korean hanbok, its delicate fabric rustling softly with every nervous shift of her weight.

Wedding | Source: Shutterstock

Wedding | Source: Shutterstock


Her hair was styled immaculately, adorned with a small, intricate hairpin that glinted in the sunlight. Despite the serene setting, her eyes darted around anxiously, reflecting a storm of emotions within.

Around her, the wedding planners and organizers were in the last throes of preparation. They moved with a practiced efficiency, adjusting decorations, coordinating with caterers, and ensuring everything was just perfect.

The air was filled with a symphony of last-minute arrangements – the clinking of cutlery, the soft murmur of the florists discussing the arrangements, and the distant sound of music as the band did their final sound check.

Chelsea, Hana's friend and the wedding photographer, adjusted her camera strap as she approached Hana.

The air was filled with the sweet fragrance of flowers and the soft hum of guests arriving, but Chelsea's attention was entirely on Hana. Her camera, usually a tool to capture joy and celebration, hung loosely by her side.

"Hana, you look troubled. It's your wedding day; you should be the happiest girl in the world," Chelsea said, her voice soft but filled with concern.

Hana looked at Chelsea, her eyes reflecting a sea of emotions. The beautiful garden, the laughter of the arriving guests, the melody of the string quartet, all seemed distant to her at that moment.


Bride | Source: Shutterstock

Bride | Source: Shutterstock

"I... I don't know, Chelsea," Hana began, her voice trembling slightly. "I’m just not sure if I'm doing the right thing. Am I marrying the right person? It's like my heart and mind are in two different places."

Chelsea set her camera down on a nearby table, giving Hana her full attention. She took Hana's hands in hers, offering a comforting squeeze.

Chelsea had always been more than just a friend; she was a confidante, someone who had seen Hana through her highs and lows.

"Hana, it's okay to have doubts, but this is a huge decision. It's your life we're talking about," Chelsea said earnestly. "If you're not sure, now is the time to really think about it.


This could be your last chance to change your mind. Don't you think it's worth searching for true love, even if it means making a tough decision now?"

Hana's eyes lowered to their intertwined hands. Chelsea's words echoed in her mind, stirring a turmoil of thoughts.

She remembered the days when she believed in fairy tales, in true love that conquers all. But reality had painted a different picture for her – one filled with compromises and practical choices.

The conversation between Hana and Chelsea continued, the warm breeze gently rustling the leaves around them. Hana, with a distant look in her eyes, spoke softly, her voice barely rising above the murmur of the arriving guests.

"I trusted my heart once, Chelsea. I truly did," Hana began, her words heavy with emotion. "I loved him with everything I had. But he... he just vanished, right before our wedding.

It was like a nightmare that I couldn't wake up from. My father always said love isn't enough, that I needed to be practical. Maybe he was right all along."

Chelsea listened intently, her heart aching for her friend. She knew how deeply Hana had been hurt, how that experience had shattered her belief in love.


Chelsea wanted to help Hana move past her pain, to see that not all love stories end in heartbreak.

"Hana, I know how hard that was for you," Chelsea said gently, reaching out to touch Hana's arm in a comforting gesture.

"But not everyone is like Damon. You can't let one bad experience dictate your entire life. There are good people out there, people who will love and cherish you for who you are."

Hana looked down, a single tear escaping her eye. The pain of Damon's betrayal still lingered, a wound that hadn't fully healed.

Photo | Source: Shutterstock

Photo | Source: Shutterstock

She had tried to move on, to be the practical daughter her father wanted her to be, but her heart still ached for what could have been.


Chelsea, sensing Hana's deep sorrow, decided to lighten the mood. She pulled out her camera, scrolling through the photos she had taken earlier.

"Look at these, Hana," Chelsea said, attempting to bring a smile to her friend's face. "The guests are all here for you, to celebrate your special day. See how happy they are?"

Hana forced a small smile and leaned in to look at the photos. There were pictures of family members, friends, and distant relatives, all dressed in their finest, their faces bright with joy.

For a moment, she allowed herself to be distracted, to appreciate the happiness of the people who had come to share in her day.

But then, something caught her eye. Among the candid shots of guests, there was a face she recognized instantly. Her heart skipped a beat as she stared at the photo in disbelief.

It was Damon, her former boyfriend, the one who had left her heartbroken and alone. He was standing at the edge of the garden, almost hidden by a cluster of trees, his eyes fixed on something in the distance.

"Damon..." Hana whispered, her voice trembling. "He's here. Why is he here?"


Chelsea looked closely at the photo, her brow furrowing in confusion. "That's... that's impossible. Why would he show up now, after all this time?"

Hana's mind raced with questions. Had Damon come to stop the wedding? Did he still have feelings for her?

Hanbok | Source: Shutterstock

Hanbok | Source: Shutterstock

Or was this just a cruel coincidence? The sight of him brought back a flood of memories – their first date, their late-night talks, the plans they had made for a future together. It all seemed like a distant dream now.

Hana felt a surge of emotions – anger, confusion, longing. She wanted to confront Damon, to demand answers for why he had left her.

But at the same time, she feared what those answers might be. The pain of his betrayal was still raw, still painful.


Chelsea watched as a myriad of emotions played across Hana's face. She knew her friend was in turmoil, torn between the past and the present.

"Hana, whatever you decide to do, I'm here for you," Chelsea said firmly. "If you want to talk to him, I'll be right by your side. If you want to ignore him and go on with the wedding, I'll support you in that too. You're not alone in this."

Hana took a deep breath, trying to steady her racing heart. The wedding, the guests, the beautiful garden – it all seemed to fade into the background as she grappled with the shock of seeing Damon again.

She knew she had to make a decision, to face the ghosts of her past before she could step into her future. With Chelsea by her side, she felt a little less alone, a little more courageous.

As the moments passed, Hana realized that this unexpected twist was a test of her strength, a chance to confront her fears and doubts.

Whatever she decided, she knew it was a decision she had to make for herself, a step she had to take to find peace. And with that realization, Hana took a step forward, ready to face whatever lay ahead.

The air was filled with a gentle hum of excitement as the wedding ceremony began. Guests in elegant attire lined the aisles, their faces beaming with joy and anticipation.


Dad | Source: Shutterstock

Dad | Source: Shutterstock

The garden, bathed in the soft light of the setting sun, was a picture of perfection. At the back of the aisle stood Hana, alongside her father, Dean. The moment they had both been preparing for had finally arrived.

Dean, a tall man with a dignified bearing, wore a traditional Korean hanbok, its fabric rich and vibrant. He looked at Hana, pride evident in his eyes.

She was breathtaking in her white gown, a delicate veil framing her face. However, beneath the surface of this picturesque scene, tension simmered.

As they began their slow walk down the aisle, Dean’s steps were measured, his gaze fixed ahead. Hana, however, seemed distant, her eyes darting around, lost in thought.


The guests rose from their seats, turning to admire the bride, unaware of the turmoil brewing within her.

As they neared the altar, Hana's pace faltered. Her grip on her father’s arm tightened, a clear sign of her inner conflict. Dean, sensing something amiss, leaned in slightly, his voice a whisper.

"Hana, what’s wrong?" Dean asked, concern lacing his words.

"Dad, I can’t do this," Hana replied, her voice trembling with emotion. "I need to stop. There's something important I have to do."

Dean’s expression shifted from concern to confusion, and then to frustration. His gaze swept over the assembled guests, their faces a mix of curiosity and concern.

"Hana, this is your wedding day. You can’t just run away from it," Dean said, his voice stern but controlled. "Focus on the here and now. Forget everything else, just for now."

Hana’s eyes filled with tears, her heart torn. She knew the weight of her decision, the impact it would have on her family, on Dean. But the sight of Damon, the unresolved questions of the past, they clawed at her, demanding attention.

Altar | Source: Shutterstock

Altar | Source: Shutterstock


"Dad, I’m sorry. I truly am. But I have to do this. Please understand," Hana pleaded, her voice breaking.

Before Dean could respond, Hana released her grip on his arm and turned away. Her dress rustled softly as she began to run, her veil floating behind her like a ghostly trail. The guests gasped and murmured, a wave of confusion rippling through the crowd.

Dean stood frozen, a mix of anger and disbelief on his face. His daughter, his pride, was running away from her own wedding, leaving him standing alone at the altar.

The eyes of the guests were on him, their expressions ranging from sympathy to judgment. He felt a surge of embarrassment, of indignity, but more than that, he felt a deep concern for Hana.

As Hana ran, her mind was a whirlwind of emotions. The faces of the guests blurred past her, their expressions of shock and awe registering faintly in her consciousness. Her heart pounded in her chest, each beat echoing the turmoil within.

"Why now? Why did Damon have to appear today of all days?" Hana thought to herself, her breaths coming in quick gasps.

The once dreamlike garden now felt like a labyrinth, the once gentle breeze now a gale pushing against her. But she pushed on, driven by a need for answers, for closure.


The questions about Damon’s sudden appearance, his reasons for being there, they overwhelmed her. She needed to know why he had left, why he had come back, and most importantly, what this meant for her future.

As she reached the edge of the garden, Hana glanced back. She saw her father, still standing at the altar, a figure of stoic disappointment. Her heart ached at the thought of hurting him, but she knew she had to follow this path, no matter where it led.

Bride | Source: Shutterstock

Bride | Source: Shutterstock

With one last look at the life she was leaving behind, Hana disappeared into the evening, her white gown a fading specter against the darkening sky.

In that moment, Hana wasn’t just running from her wedding. She was running towards the truth, towards a future that was uncertain but one that she needed to face.


The decision to leave her wedding was not just a physical act of departure, but a pivotal moment of choosing her own path, a path that demanded answers and, ultimately, a chance at true happiness.

Hana's heart pounded in her chest as she dashed out of the hotel, the grand doors swinging shut behind her. The evening air hit her face, a sharp contrast to the stifling emotions she had left inside.

Her wedding dress, once a symbol of a dreamy future, now felt like a cumbersome shackle, hindering her desperate pursuit. Without hesitation, Hana began shedding the parts of her outfit that impeded her movement.

The long, flowing train was the first to go, followed by the cumbersome layers of tulle and lace. She slipped off her elegant, but impractical, high-heeled shoes and continued barefoot.

Now more agile, Hana scanned the surroundings frantically. The hotel, with its ornate architecture and glowing lights, stood imposingly against the night sky.

She searched for any sign of Damon, her eyes darting to every corner, every shadow. The place she had seen him in Chelsea's photo was just around the corner, near a small, beautifully landscaped garden that was now deserted.


She looked around, hoping to catch a glimpse of him. A few latecomers to the wedding were milling about, engaged in their own conversations, oblivious to Hana's turmoil.

Garden | Source: Shutterstock

Garden | Source: Shutterstock

But none of them resembled Damon. The disappointment was a sharp sting. Hana's breaths were heavy, her mind racing with confusion and fear. "Where could he be?" she thought, her eyes searching the area with growing desperation.

Hana's breath came in short, sharp gasps as she navigated her way through the bustling hotel parking lot. The chaos of the wedding, the shock of seeing Damon in the photo, and the weight of her wedding dress still clinging to her made every step feel like wading through a stormy sea. Her eyes darted around, searching desperately for any sign of Damon.


As she moved further into the parking lot, her focus shifted from face to face, hoping to catch a glimpse of him. But he was nowhere to be seen. Just as she was about to give up, her eyes landed on something familiar - a car that tugged at her heartstrings.

It was Damon's old car, unmistakable with its faded paint and the small dent on the side from a memory long past. For a moment, Hana's heart leaped with hope.

She rushed towards the car, her bare feet slapping against the cold pavement. Reaching the vehicle, she peered inside, her hands pressed against the cool glass of the window. The interior was empty, no sign of Damon, but something else caught her eye.

On the driver's seat, partially obscured by the steering wheel, lay a motel flyer. It was a small, inconspicuous piece of paper, yet to Hana, it was a beacon of hope in the overwhelming darkness of her current situation.

Motel | Source: Shutterstock

Motel | Source: Shutterstock


Hana fumbled for her phone, her fingers trembling as she switched on the camera. She zoomed in on the flyer through the car window, the digital zoom bringing the text into focus.

The address of the motel popped up on the screen, a string of numbers and a street name that meant nothing to her and everything all at once.

She stepped back from the car, her mind racing. The flyer could mean anything - was. Despite the uncertainty, Hana knew she had to follow this lead. It was the only clue she had to Damon's whereabouts.

Hana glanced around the parking lot, now eerily quiet. The excitement of the wedding seemed a world away. She quickly tapped her phone, her fingers deftly navigating the touchscreen to call a taxi.

Her voice was steady as she spoke to the operator, giving them the address of the motel. The wait for the taxi felt like an eternity, each second stretching out endlessly as her mind whirled with possibilities and fears.

Finally, the taxi arrived, pulling up to the curb with a soft purr of the engine. Hana slid into the backseat, her wedding dress bunching up around her.

She gave the driver the address once more, and the car pulled away, leaving the hotel and the remnants of her wedding day behind.


As the taxi wound its way through the city streets, Hana's thoughts were a tumultuous sea. She wondered about Damon, about why he had come back, and why he had been at her wedding.

The uncertainty was suffocating, yet she clung to the hope that this motel might hold the answers she so desperately sought.

As the taxi pulled away, leaving Hana standing in the dimly lit parking lot of the motel, she took a moment to gather her thoughts.

Reception | Source: Shutterstock

Reception | Source: Shutterstock

The neon sign flickered above her, casting an eerie glow on the rundown facade of the building. She clutched her phone tightly, the photo of Damon displayed on the screen – her only lead in this unexpected journey.


Taking a deep breath, Hana stepped forward, her wedding dress now feeling completely out of place in this mundane setting. She pushed open the door to the motel lobby, a small bell tinkling as she entered.

The interior was dated, with faded wallpaper and a musty smell that spoke of years of neglect.

Behind the front desk stood a motel employee, a middle-aged woman with a weary expression. She looked up as Hana approached, her eyes widening slightly at the sight of a bride in her lobby.

"Can I help you?" the employee asked, a hint of curiosity in her voice.

Hana held up her phone, showing the employee the photo of Damon. "Have you seen this man? His name is Damon," Hana asked, her voice steady despite the butterflies in her stomach.

The employee took a closer look at the photo, then nodded. "Yeah, I've seen him. He's been staying here for a few days. Was supposed to check out yesterday morning, but he's gone missing. Haven't seen him since."

Hana's heart sank. Damon was here, but now he was missing again. It felt like every step she took towards him only led to more questions.


"I'm... I'm his girlfriend," Hana lied, hoping to glean more information. "Could I get the keys to his room? Maybe there's something there that could tell me where he is."

Key | Source: Shutterstock

Key | Source: Shutterstock

The employee eyed Hana skeptically, then shook her head. "Sorry, I can't give you the keys. It's against our policy to let anyone into a guest's room without their permission. We'll just have to wait for him to return."

Hana's plan had hit a dead end. She felt a mix of frustration and desperation. She needed to find Damon, to understand why he had come back into her life only to disappear again.

"Please, it's really important," Hana implored, the urgency in her voice clear. "I just need to know if he's okay."


The employee sighed, her expression softening slightly. "I understand you're worried, but my hands are tied. If he doesn't show up by tomorrow, I'll call the authorities and they can handle it."

Hana nodded, understanding yet disheartened. She thanked the employee and turned to leave. As she stepped back into the cool night air, her mind was a whirlwind of emotions.

Damon's sudden reappearance and subsequent disappearance were baffling. What was he doing at the motel? Why had he not checked out? And most importantly, where was he now?

Her father's voice echoed in her head, his words of practicality and caution. But Hana's heart wouldn't let her give up. She had come this far, driven by a need for closure and answers. She couldn't turn back now.

Standing alone in the parking lot, Hana felt the weight of her situation. She was a bride without a groom, a woman chasing after shadows of the past. Yet, she knew she couldn't return to the wedding, to Kevin, not with so many unresolved feelings swirling inside her.

Hana sat on the bench outside the motel, lost in her thoughts, when her phone suddenly buzzed in her hand. The screen lit up, displaying her father’s name.


Her heart skipped a beat, a mix of apprehension and guilt washing over her. With a deep breath to steady her nerves, she answered the call.

“Hana! Where are you?” Dean’s voice was sharp, a clear edge of anger cutting through it. “You need to come back to the wedding immediately. Do you have any idea how this looks? You’re disgracing me and the family!”

Call | Source: Shutterstock

Call | Source: Shutterstock

Hana winced, the weight of her father’s words pressing down on her. She could imagine him, standing amidst the confused guests, his pride wounded, his plans for the perfect wedding falling apart.

“Dad, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to cause a scene,” Hana replied, her voice trembling. “But I saw Damon’s car parked near the hotel. I can’t just ignore that. I need to find out what happened to him.”


Dean’s response was a mix of frustration and disbelief. “Damon? That boy left you, Hana. He’s in the past. There’s nothing there to find out. You’re letting your emotions get the better of you.”

Hana felt a sting at her father’s words. He didn’t understand the turmoil she was going through, the need for closure that drove her.

Yet, she also knew that her actions had consequences, that her sudden departure had turned what should have been a joyous occasion into a spectacle.

“I know he left, Dad. But I need to do this. I need answers, or I’ll always wonder,” Hana said, her voice firmer now. “Please try to understand.”

There was a pause on the line, and Hana could almost picture her father’s internal struggle – his desire to maintain appearances clashing with his concern for his daughter.

“Hana, you’re making a mistake,” Dean finally said, his voice heavy with disappointment. “Come back to the wedding. We can talk about this later.”

Hana sighed, torn between her need for answers and the realization that her actions had far-reaching effects.

She knew she couldn’t drag out the situation at the wedding any longer. She had to face her responsibilities, regardless of her personal turmoil.


“You’re right, Dad. I’m coming back,” Hana conceded, her decision made. “I’ll be there soon.”

Taxi | Source: Shutterstock

Taxi | Source: Shutterstock

Hana sat in the backseat of the taxi, her once-pristine wedding dress now crumpled around her. The fabric felt heavy, much like the burden of her thoughts.

The city lights passed by in a blur, each one a fleeting moment in the whirlwind of her current life. She was lost in a sea of thoughts, feelings, and memories, a tumultuous mix that swirled chaotically inside her.

Her mind replayed the events of the day over and over. The image of Damon, captured in Chelsea's photo, lingered in her thoughts. "He was there, right outside the wedding,"


Hana muttered to herself, a frown creasing her brow. The realization that Damon had been so close, yet she hadn't seen him, gnawed at her. Why hadn't he come to see her? What was he doing there if not to speak to her?

The taxi's engine hummed a steady rhythm, but it was a faint sound compared to the loud thoughts echoing in Hana's head. She leaned her forehead against the cool window, feeling the slight vibrations as the car moved.

Her heart was heavy with a mix of sadness and confusion. She had so many questions, and the one person who could answer them was Damon. But he was like a ghost, present in one moment and gone the next.

"If his car is near the hotel, then he must be here, somewhere in the city," Hana thought, trying to piece together the puzzle.

It didn't make sense for Damon to leave his car and disappear without meeting her, especially on her wedding day. There had to be a reason, something she was missing.

Hana’s thoughts drifted to the past, to the times she and Damon had spent together. They had been happy, or so she had thought. Damon had always been a bit of an enigma, but she had felt they understood each other.


The memories were bittersweet, filled with laughter and love, but now tainted with the pain of his sudden departure.

As the taxi weaved through the city streets, taking Hana back to the life she had momentarily escaped, her mind was consumed by thoughts of Damon.

Love | Source: Shutterstock

Love | Source: Shutterstock

The city outside was a blur, its lights and sounds fading into the background as she delved deeper into her memories.

She remembered the first time she met Damon. It was a chance encounter at a local coffee shop. He had accidentally spilled his drink on her, and in the flurry of apologies that followed, they had struck up a conversation.

There was an immediate connection, a spark that couldn't be ignored. Damon was different from anyone she had known – his background, far removed from the privileged world she came from, didn't matter to her.


His lack of wealth and formal education, often a subject of her father's scorn, was irrelevant in her eyes. Damon was special in ways that couldn’t be measured by material standards.

Hana's thoughts drifted to the countless moments they shared – simple, yet filled with warmth and happiness. Damon had a way of making even the most mundane activities seem magical.

Whether they were walking in the park, sharing a pizza, or just talking for hours, every moment with him was a treasure.

Her father, however, had never approved of Damon. He saw him as unsuitable, a poor match for the daughter of a successful businessman. He often criticized Damon’s background, his lack of a college degree, and his humble family.

To her father, these were insurmountable barriers. But for Hana, they only made her love for Damon more profound. She admired his resilience, his kindness, and the way he faced life's challenges with a smile.

In the taxi, Hana smiled sadly as she recalled how Damon used to listen to her. He had a rare gift for truly listening to what she said.

He paid attention to her words, her expressions, and even the things she didn't say. With Damon, she felt heard and understood, a feeling she cherished deeply.


Memory | Source: Shutterstock

Memory | Source: Shutterstock

As Hana sat in the back of the taxi, her thoughts inevitably drifted to Kevin, the man she was supposed to marry.

The contrast between him and Damon couldn't have been more stark, and as the vehicle moved closer to the hotel, Hana found herself reflecting on the differences.

Kevin was the epitome of what her father valued: success, stability, and a prestigious family background. He was always impeccably dressed, his demeanor calm and composed.

In the social circles they frequented, he was respected and admired, a man who seemed to have his life perfectly planned out.

Hana remembered their first meeting at a formal dinner organized by her father. Kevin had been polite and charming, his conversation filled with talk of his business ventures and future plans.


He had a good education from a top university and came from a family that was well-known in business circles. On paper, he was everything Hana's father wanted for her.

But for Hana, the relationship lacked the spark she craved. Kevin was often preoccupied, his mind always somewhere else. Their conversations, though intelligent and insightful, rarely ventured beyond the superficial.

Hana longed for someone who could make her laugh, who would listen to her dreams and fears, and who valued the small moments of joy as much as the big achievements.

Kevin's quiet, focused nature meant that he was often absorbed in his own world. Hana tried to understand and appreciate his perspective, knowing that his intentions were good and his affection genuine.

However, she often felt a sense of loneliness even when they were together. She missed the easy laughter, the spontaneous adventures, and the deep, heartfelt conversations she had shared with Damon.

As the taxi pulled up to the hotel, Hana's gaze instinctively swept over the parking lot.

She wasn't ready to face the wedding again just yet; her mind was still entangled with thoughts of Damon. The hope of finding some clue, any sign of him, clung to her like a lifeline.


Distance | Source: Shutterstock

Distance | Source: Shutterstock

Through the taxi's window, amidst the sea of vehicles, she spotted the familiar outline of Damon's car. Her heart leaped in her chest. It was starting to move, slowly rolling away from its parking spot.

A tide of urgency washed over her, and without a second thought, she leaned forward, speaking to the taxi driver.

"Can you follow that car, please?" Hana asked, pointing towards Damon's vehicle. Her voice was tense, a mix of excitement and anxiety. The taxi driver glanced at her through the rearview mirror, a flash of surprise crossing his face.

"Are you sure, miss?" the driver asked, his tone cautious but willing to comply.


"Yes, I'm sure. Please, it's very important," Hana urged, her eyes never leaving the slowly retreating car.

With a nod, the taxi driver shifted gears and the car smoothly pulled back onto the road, following Damon's vehicle at a discreet distance.

Hana sat back, her hands clasped tightly in her lap, her mind racing with possibilities. What if it was Damon driving? Where was he going? Why had he come to the hotel only to leave again?

The taxi came to a gradual stop, mirroring the halt of Damon's car ahead. Hana peered out of the window, her heart catching in her throat as she recognized the location.

They were near her father's old house, a place brimming with memories from her childhood. It was a quaint, two-story building, nestled in a quieter part of the city, its walls holding years of laughter, tears, and countless family moments.

Hana felt a wave of nostalgia wash over her as she gazed at the house. She remembered playing in the garden, the swing her father had installed for her, and the treehouse where she spent countless hours dreaming and reading.

House | Source: Shutterstock

House | Source: Shutterstock


Each window, each brick, seemed to whisper stories of her past, a past that was both joyous and bittersweet.

She watched as Damon's car door opened. Her breath hitched, her mind racing with questions. Why had Damon stopped here, at her old family home? What connection could this place possibly have to him?

Hana's memories of the house were a mix of happiness and family warmth, but now it stood as a symbol of mystery and unanswered questions.

The taxi driver glanced back at her, a questioning look in his eyes. "Do you want me to wait, miss?" he asked, his voice pulling her back from her reverie.

Hana nodded absently, her attention still fixed on the figure emerging from Damon's car. "Yes, please wait. I won't be long," she said, her voice barely above a whisper.

Hana stood there for a moment, her eyes fixed on the figure emerging from Damon's car. To her surprise, it wasn't Damon. Instead, one of her father's guards stepped out, his posture rigid and alert.

A flicker of confusion crossed her mind – why would her father's guard be driving Damon's car, and why here, at their old family house?


As she watched the guard scan the surroundings, a sense of determination took hold of her. She needed to find out what was happening, why her father's guard was here with Damon's car.

The only way to get answers was to get inside the house, but with the guard there, she had to be stealthy about it.

Hana remembered the layout of the house vividly, every nook and cranny from her childhood explorations.

Backyard | Source: Shutterstock

Backyard | Source: Shutterstock

There was a way to get into the house through the backyard, a path she used many times as a child during her playful adventures. It was a secret passage of sorts, known only to her and her childhood imagination.

Moving away from the guard's line of sight, Hana quietly made her way around the block, her heart pounding in her chest. The familiar streets of her childhood neighborhood now felt like a labyrinth, each step heavy with uncertainty and fear.


She reached the back of the house, where tall hedges and a wooden fence concealed the backyard.

Memories flooded back to her – this was where she used to play hide-and-seek with her friends, where she had her first garden, and where she used to gaze up at the stars, dreaming of the future.

Taking a deep breath to calm her racing heart, Hana searched for the small hidden latch on the fence that she and her father had installed years ago.

Her fingers found the familiar metal hook, and she carefully lifted it, opening a small section of the fence just enough for her to slip through.

The backyard was overgrown now, the flowers and plants that her mother had lovingly tended now wild and untamed. Hana moved quickly but quietly, her eyes scanning for any sign of the guard.

She could see the back door of the house from where she was, a door that was always left unlocked during her childhood days.

As she approached the house, Hana felt a mix of fear and nostalgia. The back door creaked softly as she pushed it open, stepping into the familiar kitchen.

It looked much the same as she remembered, though now covered in a thin layer of dust, a testament to its abandonment.


Door | Source: Shutterstock

Door | Source: Shutterstock

The house was silent, the only sound her soft footsteps on the wooden floor. Hana's mind was a whirlwind of thoughts – what was her father's guard doing here, and what did it have to do with Damon's disappearance?

Hana tiptoed through the familiar yet eerily quiet corridors of her old house, her heart racing with a mix of fear and determination. The once lively walls, adorned with family pictures and her childhood drawings, now felt like silent witnesses to the mystery unfolding before her.

She paused for a moment, taking in the surreal feeling of being back in a place so full of memories, now under such strange circumstances.

As she made her way towards the staircase, Hana noticed a guard, one of her father's, asleep in an armchair. His presence confirmed her suspicions that something unusual was happening.


She carefully stepped around the guard, making sure to avoid any creaky floorboards that could betray her presence.

Reaching the second floor, Hana's senses were heightened. The familiar layout of the house provided a small comfort in the sea of uncertainties she was navigating.

The second floor had always been a private sanctuary for the family, hosting their bedrooms and personal spaces.

Suddenly, a soft thud echoed through the hallway, like someone gently knocking from inside one of the rooms.

Hana's pulse quickened. She stopped, trying to pinpoint the source of the sound. It was faint and had come so unexpectedly that she couldn't be sure which room it emanated from.

She moved down the hallway, her ears straining for any further sound. The house seemed to hold its breath along with her, the silence almost tangible. Hana's childhood room, her parents' room, the guest room – she checked each door, her movements cautious and deliberate.

Second floor | Source: Shutterstock

Second floor | Source: Shutterstock


Hana continued her silent exploration of the house, her footsteps light and cautious. The memories that filled each room were almost tangible, echoing a past that seemed so distant now.

She got to father's cabinet, a room that had always been off-limits to her as a child, a space where her father conducted his business and made important decisions.

The door was slightly ajar. Hana pushed it open and stepped inside, her eyes scanning the room. The office was just as she remembered – organized, with a large wooden desk, bookshelves filled with thick volumes, and framed certificates adorning the walls.

But what caught her eye were several documents spread out on the desk, their presence indicating recent activity.

Approaching the desk, Hana noticed her fiancé Kevin’s surname printed prominently on one of the documents.

A wave of curiosity mixed with apprehension washed over her. She glanced over her shoulder, ensuring she was still alone, before turning her attention back to the papers.

As she leafed through the documents, Hana’s initial curiosity turned into disbelief. The papers outlined a business deal, a partnership between her father's company and Kevin’s family business.


The terms were detailed and complex, but what stood out to her was the date set for signing the deal – it was scheduled for the day after her wedding.

The realization hit Hana like a ton of bricks. Her marriage to Kevin, was it just a business arrangement for their families? Was her wedding less about love and more about a corporate merger? The thought made her feel like a pawn in a larger game she hadn’t agreed to play.

She remembered conversations at dinner parties where her father and Kevin's father would discuss business, their voices low and serious. It had never occurred to her that her marriage might be a part of their negotiations.

Feeling a mixture of anger and betrayal, Hana carefully placed the documents back on the desk. Her mind was reeling. The wedding, which she had approached with doubts about her feelings for Kevin, now felt even more like a farce.

She thought about her father, his practical views on marriage, and his often-quoted line about the importance of making smart choices. Was this what he meant all along?

Documents | Source: Shutterstock

Documents | Source: Shutterstock


Hana’s thoughts then drifted to her mother, who had passed away a few years ago. She wondered what her mother would have thought about all this.

Her mother had always been the heart of their home, a gentle soul who believed in love and kindness. The idea that her marriage was being used as a business strategy would have hurt her deeply.

Leaving her father's office with a heavy heart, Hana's mind was a whirlwind of emotions. Betrayal, confusion, and a sense of loss swirled within her as she navigated the familiar yet now foreign hallways of her childhood home.

She felt the weight of the revelations from her father's office bearing down on her, each step feeling more burdensome than the last.

As she descended the staircase, a sudden sound halted her in her tracks. It was a series of soft knocks, rhythmic and deliberate, coming from the end of the hallway. Hana’s heart raced.

The house had been quiet up until now, the only sounds being her own movements and the distant hum of the city outside.

She followed the sound, her steps cautious. The knocks led her to a door she knew well – it was a small, inconspicuous room that had always been used for storage.


But now, it was locked, a fact that struck her as odd. Her father had never been one to lock rooms in their family home.

With her ear pressed against the door, Hana listened. There was a muffled sound from within, like someone trying to communicate through the barrier.

Her breath caught in her throat as she realized who it might be. “Damon?” she whispered, her voice barely audible.

Room | Source: Shutterstock

Room | Source: Shutterstock

There was a pause, and then a soft, familiar voice responded from the other side. “Hana? Is that you?”

It was Damon. Relief and a torrent of questions flooded through Hana. How did he end up locked in this room? What was going on?


Hana’s mind raced for a solution. The door was solid and the lock seemed sturdy.

She remembered, however, a secret about the house that not many knew – a hidden lift used for moving items between floors, hidden behind a panel in the wall near the locked room.

As a child, she had discovered it during her explorations and often used it as a secret hideout.

Moving quickly, Hana felt along the wall for the almost invisible seam that she knew was there.

Her fingers found the catch, and she pressed it, revealing the hidden lift – a narrow, vertical passage with a small platform used for transporting items. It was just big enough for a person to fit.

“Damon, there’s a lift in the wall. I’m going to send it up. Stand back,” Hana instructed, her voice a mix of urgency and excitement.

She heard Damon move away from the door and then she activated the lift mechanism. The platform descended with a quiet whir, and Hana quickly explained the plan to Damon.

He would have to crouch down on the platform and she would send him down to the lower floor, where she would help him out.


The lift was an old feature of the house, rarely used, but it worked smoothly, a testament to the meticulous care her father had always taken of their home.



Once the lift returned to her level, Hana sent it back up for herself. Her heart pounded as she crouched on the small platform, the wall closing in front of her.

The lift descended slowly, and for a moment, Hana was enveloped in darkness, the only sound being the soft hum of the lift mechanism.

When the lift reached the bottom, Hana emerged into the lower hallway, where Damon was waiting for her. They exchanged a look of relief and disbelief.


Damon was disheveled, his expression one of confusion and exhaustion, but he was unharmed.

“Hana, how did you...?” Damon began, his question trailing off.

Hana smiled, a mixture of nerves and excitement. “Childhood hide-and-seek champion,” she quipped, trying to lighten the mood despite the gravity of the situation.

They knew they had to move quickly. Hana took Damon’s hand, leading him through the house, avoiding the main areas where they might encounter her father’s security.

As they moved stealthily through the house, Hana’s mind was a whirlwind of emotions and questions. But one thing was clear – she had found Damon, and now they needed to find a way out together, away from the mysteries and shadows that had enveloped her family home.

Hana and Damon, having slipped out of the house undetected, found themselves on a quiet, dimly lit street. It was a safe distance away from the house, a place where they could talk without the fear of being overheard or discovered.

Street | Source: Shutterstock

Street | Source: Shutterstock


The night was still, with only the occasional rustling of leaves and the distant hum of the city.

They stood there for a moment, taking in each other's presence. It had been a year since they last saw each other, a year filled with pain, questions, and longing.

Now, under the faint glow of the streetlights, they faced each other, a mixture of emotions playing across their faces.

Damon looked at Hana, his eyes reflecting a deep sense of relief mixed with sorrow. "Hana, I can't tell you how happy I am to see you," he said, his voice tinged with a sadness that went beyond the joy of their reunion.

Hana, still reeling from the night’s events, could only nod, encouraging him to continue. There was so much she wanted to know, so much she needed to understand.

Damon took a deep breath, as if bracing himself to reveal a painful truth. "A year ago, I didn't just leave because I wanted to... Your father, Dean, he came to me with an offer." He paused, his eyes searching Hana's for understanding.

"He knew about my mom's cancer. We were drowning in medical bills, and I was desperate. Dean offered to pay for all her treatment, on one condition - that I leave you and never speak to you again." Damon's voice broke slightly, the weight of his confession evident in his tone.


Hana's heart clenched at his words, a mix of shock and heartache washing over her. "Damon, why didn’t you tell me? We could have figured something out together," she said, her voice a whisper in the quiet night.

Damon shook his head, a look of regret crossing his face. "I couldn’t, Hana. The deal was clear - if I told you anything about it, the deal was off. I couldn't risk my mom's life. She was all I had."

The pain in Damon's eyes was palpable, and Hana reached out, taking his hand in hers. The connection was immediate, a current of shared sorrow and understanding passing between them.

Deal | Source: Shutterstock

Deal | Source: Shutterstock

Damon continued, "I’ve regretted that decision every day. I loved you, Hana, more than anything. And when my mom passed away recently, I knew I had to see you, to explain, to apologize."


Hana squeezed his hand, her own eyes brimming with tears. "I missed you so much, Damon. I didn't understand why you left, why you disappeared without a word."

Damon looked down, his voice barely audible. "I’m so sorry, Hana. But as soon as I got close to the wedding today, Dean's security recognized me. They caught me and locked me up until the end of the ceremony."

Hana felt a surge of anger at her father, but also a profound sadness for Damon, for what he had been through. "It’s not your fault, Damon. We were both caught in a situation beyond our control."

Under the dim glow of the streetlights, Hana and Damon stood in a moment of shared revelation, the truths of the past year laid bare between them. The quiet of the night enveloped them, offering a brief respite from the turmoil that churned within.

Damon, his expression a mixture of hope and apprehension, reached out to Hana. "Let's leave this all behind, Hana.

We can start over, somewhere new, just you and me," he urged, his voice laced with a desperate longing for a future he had once thought lost.

Hana, however, stood still, her mind a whirlpool of thoughts and emotions.


The revelations about her father's manipulation and the true nature of her impending marriage weighed heavily on her. Yet, amidst this chaos, a newfound resolve began to take root.

"Damon, I can't," Hana said softly, yet firmly. Her eyes, reflecting the pain of their shared past, met his. "Running away won't solve anything. It's time to face the truth, to confront my father and what he's done."

Dad | Source: Shutterstock

Dad | Source: Shutterstock

Damon's face fell, a mixture of confusion and disappointment clouding his features. "But Hana, after everything that's happened, after everything he's done, why would you go back to that?"

Hana took a deep breath, feeling the weight of her decision. "Because hiding from the truth won't change it. My father needs to know that I know, and that I'm not a pawn in his business deals.


This... marriage, it was never about love or my happiness. It's time for me to stand up for myself."

Hana stood at the back of the ceremony hall, her heart pounding in her chest. The guests' murmurs quieted as they noticed her return. She took a deep breath, steadying herself for what was about to come.

Her eyes scanned the room, landing on her father, who stood near the altar with a look of relief that quickly turned to confusion upon seeing her determined expression.

"I'm ready," Hana announced, her voice surprisingly steady. Her father, though perplexed, seemed to accept her words and offered his arm to walk her down the aisle.

Hana took it, her steps measured as she approached the altar. The guests watched in silent anticipation, the air thick with curiosity.

Wedding | Source: Shutterstock

Wedding | Source: Shutterstock


As they reached the altar, Hana stood beside Kevin, who gave her a small, uncertain smile. She turned to face him, her eyes locking with his. It was time for the vows, the moment that would bind her to Kevin in marriage.

The officiant began, and when it was her turn, Hana took a deep breath. The words she was about to say had been rehearsed, but now they took on a new meaning.

"I promise to always love the groom," she began, her voice clear and strong. There was a brief pause, and then, with a resolve that surprised even her, she said, "Damon."

The room erupted in a mix of gasps and murmurs. Kevin's face registered shock and confusion, and her father's expression turned to one of disbelief and anger. But Hana's eyes were searching the crowd for only one face - Damon's.

As if on cue, Damon emerged from the crowd, his eyes locked on Hana's. He walked up to her, standing by her side at the altar. There was a sense of defiance in his step, a determination that matched Hana's.

"I'm sure now," Hana continued, her voice ringing out in the now silent hall. "I am marrying the person I truly love." She turned to face Damon, her expression one of love and certainty.


The guests were in a state of shock, whispering among themselves, trying to comprehend what they had just witnessed. Kevin stood frozen, the realization dawning on him that the woman he was about to marry loved someone else.

Hana's father stepped forward, his face red with a mix of embarrassment and rage. "Hana, what is the meaning of this? This is outrageous!" he exclaimed, his voice echoing in the hall.

Hana turned to face her father, her resolve unwavering. "Dad, I can't marry Kevin. I've realized that I can't deny my heart any longer. Damon is who I truly love."

The silence in the room was palpable. Hana's confession hung in the air, a declaration of her truth, her defiance against a future that had been chosen for her.

Damon, standing beside her, took her hand in his, a gesture of support and solidarity. The love between them was evident, a stark contrast to the arranged nature of her relationship with Kevin.

Ring | Source: Shutterstock

Ring | Source: Shutterstock


Hana looked around the room, her gaze meeting those of the guests, some with expressions of shock, others with nods of understanding.

She knew that her decision would have consequences, but in that moment, she felt a sense of freedom and authenticity she had never experienced before.

The ceremony was no longer a marriage to Kevin, but a testament to Hana's courage to follow her heart, to stand up against expectations and choose her own path. It was a moment of reckoning, of breaking free from the chains of obligation and embracing a future of her own making.

As the realization of what had just transpired settled over the guests, Hana and Damon turned to face each other. In their eyes was a promise – a promise of a future built on love, honesty, and the courage to fight for what truly mattered.

And with that, they walked down the aisle together, stepping into a new chapter of their lives, one written by them and for them.

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