The Scale (Martha's Way)

By: Mika Jolie

Martha’s Way Book 1

Chapter One

“Anything you build on a large scale or with intense passion invites chaos.”

Francis Ford Coppola

Minka blinked, forcing her eyes to adjust to the bright rays of sun piercing into her bedroom. The sheer white curtains danced in the room to the soft morning breeze penetrating the open windows. It was a perfect June day on the island of Martha’s Vineyard. The coolness of spring still lingered in the air while the warm, hazy days of summer lurked in the atmosphere. How she wished the sky was dark and gloomy; at least it would reflect her mood. Instead, the sun gleamed through the window onto her face, taunting and laughing at her.

Absently, she reached over to the nightstand and focused on the personalized wedding invitation beautifully printed on delicate, cream-colored Kraft paper. The words in blue-green colors of the ocean stared back at her.

Keely and Blake

Joyfully request the pleasure of your company

As we gather our closest friends and family to witness our vows and celebrate our love with a relaxed weekend of feasting and sunbathing on the island of Martha’s Vineyard.

The problem was Minka was on the island for two weeks. A long weekend she could have handled—for the most part. Either way, she was screwed. But fourteen days living and breathing her twin sister marrying Blake Alexander was going to be a slow death sentence.

And today was one of those days she wished she was a little girl and could climb into her mother’s lap and cry until the hurt disappeared. She let out an exasperated sigh because at the moment she couldn’t remember the last time she’d shared one of those mother-daughter moments with her mom. No, even those intimate moments were left for Keely.

Groaning, she placed the card back on the nightstand. Last night she’d cried a lot because of the wedding. There was a time she used to laugh with Blake, and now she was heartbroken because of him. The hardest thing she’d have to do in the next two weeks was to let go of someone who’d never belonged to her in the first place.

The thought left Minka emotionally done, mentally drained, but physically she needed to smile. She pulled the covers away and forced herself out of the comfort of the bed. “Put on your big girl panties,” she muttered, knowing she could no longer avoid the events ahead. Her head pulsated with pain. Grimacing, she massaged her temples, trying to ease the throbbing sensation as she stumbled into the bathroom to turn on the shower, regretting the amount of wine she’d consumed the previous night. A Do Over button would come in handy right about now because, as much as she would like to deny this little fact, she was hung over and her waistline felt more enlarged than usual.

Great! Of all days to feel bloated, today wasn’t the day. In a few hours, she had to endure her twin sister’s engagement party. The prettier version of me. Minka grimaced, accepting she hadn’t achieved her lose-two-pounds-a-week goal. Leaning on the makeup counter, she studied her reflection in the mirror; swollen, shadowy eyes stared back at her. She sighed in defeat. On a good day she would not consider makeup to be a friend, and today she would need to rely on concealer to hide those dark circles under her eyes.

For a while, Minka stared at her reflection until a small, thin, rectangular-shaped, slick metal device on the floor caught her attention. A knot twisted in her stomach as she turned to face the scale sitting loftily on her bathroom’s navy and white-checkered tiles.

Well, there goes your effort to look trim and sexy. Her nemesis mocked her efforts to trim down her curvy figure, tempting her to prove it wrong—she did have willpower and had met her goal for the week.

Except at that instant, the acid chose to flare inside her esophagus, a reminder of one too many slices of pizza along with the wine she had consumed.

Dejected, Minka turned away from the uninvited monster and wished she could smash it down the garbage disposal. Any opportunity to listen to its metallic death throes was sure to bring her great pleasure. But that thought was not enough to boost her mood as she entered the shower, wishing she was playing Monopoly and miraculously landed on the Go Straight to Jail, Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect Two Hundred Dollars card. Anything that could make her vanish for the day.

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