A greedy man charmed a rich older woman to marry him so he could get his hands on her money, but she turned the tables on him.
Alan McDermott knew he was destined for the finer things in life, but unfortunately, he had been born into a middle-class family. Of course, Alan could have gone to college, earned his degree, got himself a good job...
It was all so sordid, Alan thought, slaving for crumbs when what he wanted was the whole glorious cake all to himself. But if Alan was lazy, he was also cunning, and one day the perfect scheme presented itself to him. He was going to be RICH...
On the verge of victory | Source: Shutterstock
Alan ran into an old high school friend at a dinner party and noticed that she was looking very prosperous. "So..." he smiled charmingly, "How is life treating you?"
The woman smiled. "Astonishingly well! I'm working for Esther Manock, Hubert Manock's widow, as a business advisor."
"Manock? The billionaire financier?"
"That's the man. Esther inherited everything, and she has me oversee her investments. Let me tell you, it's a sweet deal!"
An ambitious man | Source: Unsplash
"Esther Manock...How old is she?" asked Alan.
"She's in her 50s, but you'd never know it. She's lovely."
"So, she has a boyfriend, I'll bet!" Alan said.
"Oh no, she's very shy. And she has a heart condition, so she avoids celebrity parties. All she cares about are her charities."
Alan pretended to love Esther in order to inherit her money, expecting her to die soon.
The billionaire's widow | Source: Pexels
Alan went home and thought about Esther Manock with her billions and her weak heart... He started investigating Esther online, every detail of her life, and within weeks he was ready to put his plan into action.
Alan haunted the bookstore he knew Esther frequented and when he saw her he picked out a stack of books and bumped into her. "I'm so sorry!" he cried, "Please forgive me..." Then he stopped and stared at her admiringly.
"That's alright," Esther said blushing, "I also get distracted when I'm looking for a book."
"It's just..." Alan pretended to be tongue-tied, "You're just so pretty..." Then he nodded awkwardly and hurried off with his books.
All for the money | Source: Pexels
Two days later, Alan walked into Esther's favorite restaurant and asked for a table next to hers. Alan smiled. The trap was closing. Alan pretended to see Esther and dropped his napkin.
"Oh! It's you!" he cried, "I've been thinking about you, and you're here!"
Esther smiled back. "What a coincidence to see you again!"
"Yes, isn't it!" said Alan, "I think it's a message from destiny."
Charming the widow | Source
Esther laughed. "Really? And what's the message?"
Alan smiled charmingly. "That beautiful women shouldn't have lunch alone..."
From that day on, Alan and Esther were inseparable, and within six months he proposed. Esther's lawyers insisted on a prenuptial agreement which stated that if Alan divorced her he'd get nothing.
Alan kissed Esther passionately. "I will sign it gladly, Esther. I love you, I don't want a cent of your money. I just want to spend the rest of my life with you."
The sick older wife | Source: Pexels
Alan had no intention of divorcing Esther. Oh no! Alan was looking forward to becoming a fabulously wealthy widower. Over the next eight years, Alan was an adoring and perfect husband.
He became devoted to Esther's favorite charities and accompanied her to all the fundraising events with apparent enjoyment. But even though he was outwardly charming and loving, he was becoming impatient.
He'd researched Esther's heart condition, and he had expected her to succumb within a year or two -- three at the most. But Esther appeared to be in great shape. Pretending concern, Alan spoke to her doctor.
"Doctor, I'm worried about Esther...I know she has a heart condition..."
His wives funeral | Source: Unsplash
"Yes," the doctor said, "And unfortunately she has a systemic condition which precludes a transplant. But let me tell you, Mr. McDermott, you've been the best medicine for Esther! With you by her side, she'll live a long happy life!"
This was not good news! Alan was upset, but there was nothing he could do about it. He'd just have to stick it out and play the loving husband for as long as it took. Alan made sure that Esther knew he wasn't interested in her financial situation.
He often encouraged her to give even more generously to charity and accepted her extravagant gifts with apparent reluctance.
"Esther, I don't think you should give me a Ferrari! It's too much...And you know money and all these things don't mean anything to me. I'm a simple man..."
A surprise in the will | Source: Unsplash
A year later, Esther started showing signs of her advancing heart condition. Within weeks she was hospitalized, and her doctors held out no hope for her recovery.
Alan spent hours by her bedside and cried convincingly in the corridors where her doctors and her visiting friends could see him. It was close, so close Alan could taste it, all those billions...
Esther passed away holding Alan's hand, and he organized an extravagant funeral. He ordered 800 red roses for her grave, one-hundred for each year of their marriage, he explained at the memorial service, sobbing.
The following day, Esther's lawyer called Alan and asked for a meeting. Alan was delighted. Finally, he would have everything he deserved, he thought, but he was in for quite a shock.
Leaving it all to the children | Source: Pexels
"Mr. McDermott," said the lawyer, "I'm sure you know how much your wife loved you, and she was determined to respect your wishes."
"My wishes..." Alan was confused. "Of course, my wishes!"
"And so Mrs. McDermott has left the entirety of her estate to your favorite charity, with the exception of the little lakeside cabin where you spent your honeymoon and a small annual stipend of $35,000."
She got him in the end | Source: Unsplash
"Yes, Mr. McDermott, all 2,5 billion dollars in funds, property, and art. She was quite determined not to burden you with wealth you didn't feel comfortable with."
Alan was devastated. He realized that he'd been too clever and had convinced Esther that he REALLY didn't want her money. After all those years all he had was that horrid lakeside cabin he'd told Esther was his dream, and a pittance to live on. Life just wasn't fair!
What can we learn from this story?
1. Lies can take on a life of their own. Alan's lies were so convincing that he ended up talking himself out of the inheritance he so desperately wanted.
2. Dishonesty reaps its own reward. Alan pretended to love Esther in order to inherit her money, expecting her to die soon, but his dishonesty led to his downfall.
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Any resemblance in this story to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
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