Gloria Salgado took the microphone and cleared her throat.
«Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, family and friends. I am Jorge’s mother, Gloria, for those of you who don’t know me…» she began, smiling as if nothing was wrong.
Her son, Jorge, had just married his girlfriend Anastasia two hours ago, although they had only been dating for a few months. Gloria had warned her son not to trust this woman. Of course, he didn’t like to hear her opinions and immediately discounted them.
«Mom, you just distrust her because she doesn’t come from a family of money. That’s not fair,» Jorge stated during their first dinner together.
Anastasia had just gone to the restroom and then Gloria had taken the opportunity to express her concerns to her son.
«That’s not the reason, Jorge. I’ve been around a lot of people from all walks of life and you know I’m not a snob despite our money,» the woman replied. «I just don’t have a good feeling about her.»
«Why?» he asked defensively.
«When you’re not looking, her expression changes completely. It’s like she starts acting like a perfect woman, but the moment you’re not around or not looking, she takes on a different attitude. It’s creepy,» Gloria revealed quietly and sincerely.
But Jorge shook his head.
«I don’t believe it. Anastasia is wonderful. Honestly, she doesn’t care about money. I would know. I don’t want to hear any more about this, okay?»
Gloria pursed her lips and said no more.
Unfortunately, George did not heed his mother’s warnings and proposed to Anastasia a few months later. They rushed into the marriage, claiming they didn’t want a big event, so their ceremony was small, albeit expensive.
During the dinner reception, Gloria decided to make a toast to reveal something important.
«It’s fantastic to be here at my son and Anastasia’s wedding. I hope they have many years of happiness ahead of them, and I’m looking forward to celebrating many moments to come,» she began. «But I’m here because I want to give them a great gift,» Gloria continued, gazing intently at the newlyweds.
«For years, my life was defined by my family’s money. Everyone I dated or befriended was questioned, and I don’t want my son to suffer that anymore. Therefore, I have decided to remove him from my will and donate all of my family’s extensive estate to charity, so this won’t cause any problems in his marriage. Cheers.»
Gloria raised her glass to a room that stood mute until the silence was broken by Anastasia, who began to sob loudly.
Jorge stood up, almost knocking his chair to the floor. «Mom!»
He leaned over again to pat his new wife on the back, but she pushed him away and rose from her seat.
«Don’t touch me! I can’t believe this! All my work for months for this! Your mother is a horrible woman! And you are… The most boring person ever! I can’t stand you, and now that you have no money! Please!» she wailed and screamed. «I’m going to file for divorce immediately! Maybe I can get something out of it!».
Jorge was speechless, but Anastasia didn’t care. She turned around, grabbed the train of her dress with both hands and marched toward the exit. Her family members also left, and the rest of the guests ended up leaving because it was all too uncomfortable.
Gloria had stayed the whole time in the same place where she made the toast and saw her son leave the wedding venue at some point. When she was sure everyone had left she went to look for him.
Jorge was sitting on the steps of the building, his head in his hands, running his fingers through his hair frantically. The older woman sat down next to him and patted him on the back.
«First, I want to say that I never wanted to do something so drastic. But I felt it was my duty,» Gloria whispered to her son, who lifted his head and had visible tears on his cheeks.
«I…I don’t know what to say. At first, I was so angry with you, but…I…I never expected Anastasia to do or say those things,» Jorge said slowly, his voice breaking.
«I didn’t know she would drop her mask like that,» Gloria added, still stroking her son’s back.
«How did you know she was lying?»
«I tried to explain before. It’s all a matter of intuition, I guess. I’ve been in situations like that before. Money can drive people crazy sometimes,» she tried to explain as she comforted him.
«What am I going to do now? She’s going to ask for a divorce. Will she be able to get anything?» he wondered, finally wiping away his tears and getting to play.
«Oh, no. We’re going to file for annulment immediately. A one-day marriage isn’t going to get anything in a divorce anyway. But an annulment is easier because she literally walked out right after her wedding. We’re going to our lawyer right now,» Gloria revealed, smiling for the first time at her son.
«Thank you, mom. Thank you,» Jorge said, and they both stood up. It was time to get this over with and move on.
Anastasia got her lawyer to try to fight Jorge and get something out of him. However, in the end she was unable to get anything because several people had witnessed her belittling her new husband at the wedding after his mother’s announcement.
Several years later, Jorge found a good woman, who honestly did not care about money and Gloria adored her.