Chapter 64 Forgive and Forget
After going inside her suite, Caroline placed her designer handbag on her bed, and she took a deep breath. She was trying to calm down when she received a phone call, making her lose concentration. She grabbed her cellphone from her handbag and answered the call.
“Hi mom,” she said. “Muñeca, how long will you be in Orlando? The twins say they miss you,” Elizabeth spoke over the phone. “Mom, I was planning on going back today, but something just came up and I think I have to stay until tomorrow. Either way, I will keep you posted.”
After a pause, she added, “hold on, mom. I have to enter a meeting. Kiss my little angels for me.” Caroline hung up the call and walked to open the door. She looked through the peephole to see who had been banging at the door. She saw a doorman standing in front of the door with some bags in his hands.
Caroline opened the door and the man holding the paper shopping bags said, “Mr. Sabbatini sent this for you.” Caroline nodded and she stepped to the side. The man walked inside the room and placed the bag on the chest that rested at the end of the bed. The man then walked out of the room and Caroline closed the door once again.
She walked closer to the shopping bags and glanced inside the bags. She then looked up and asked herself, “what is he thinking?” Caroline walked closer to the balcony and opened the door to get some fresh air. She stepped out and took a deep breath of the nice ocean breeze.
“It’s a beautiful day, don’t you agree?” Liam asked sitting out on the balcony next to hers. “I trust you the clothes were already delivered. Get ready. We’re going for a walk.”
“If I do as you say and play nice, will we go back to Miami today?” Liam thought for a moment. Then he answered, “yes.”
“I will be ready in an hour.”
“I give you thirty minutes.”
“I’m sorry to disappoint you, Mr. Sabbatini, but a woman takes longer to get ready. I suggest you show a bit of patience.” Liam looked at his watch and said, “alright. I will be downstairs waiting for you.” Caroline walked back inside the suite and decided to get ready.
After getting ready, Caroline walked out of the suite and went down to the lobby of the building. She looked around for Liam, but he was nowhere to be found. She walked out to the pool area and found him standing by the railing. He was puffing a cigar he held in between his fingers as he looked out at the ocean.
Seeing how placid he looked, Caroline did not want to disrupt him, but she had to. It pained her how much she wanted to stay away from him but always ended up finding herself back in his arms. She hated how much she tried to forgive him and forget the past. She hated not knowing how he truly felt about her. She stepped closer to him, determined to not give in any longer, determined to protect herself and her feelings.
Caroline stood next to him. Feeling her by his side, he puffed out the smoke before looking at her. “Ready, princess?” Caroline nodded. “But before we go, I’d like for you to remember your promise.”
“Don’t worry, I remember, princess. I will take you back to Miami -unless you want to stay.” Caroline grabbed his arm and said, “no, let’s just stick to the plan.” She began to walk whilst holding his arm. Liam threw away the cigar butt and walked alongside her, refusing to let go of her grasp.
They walked through the streets of Key West along with the other tourists. They held hands as if they were a newlywed couple. The entire time, Caroline had been telling herself she was only playing nice in order to return to Miami.
They walked along the pier to watch the breath-taking sunset displaying in a beautiful orangish color, blending in with the water. The orange color mixed in with the peach color of the clouds and the azure color of the sky.
As they watched the sunset, Liam wrapped his arms around Caroline as he pulled her closer to him. He looked into her eyes and then his gaze traveled down to her cherry lips. His hand traveled from her waist up to her cheek. He gently brushed his fingers against her porcelain skin. His fingers traveled down beneath her chin, lifting up her gaze as he looked from her lips, back to her eyes as he bit his bottom lip. He leaned in and whispered, “can I kiss you?”
Caroline nodded. He leaned in for a passionate kiss. The beautiful scenery along with the sweet gestures Liam did ever since they left the hotel made her believe she was with a completely different Liam. A Liam she had only met four years ago when he said he loved her. But did he really love her? At the thought of Liam’s words being just lie’s Caroline separated from the kiss. She looked away to see the sun about to set.
She had looked at the sun for so long in her mind it appeared as the last ray leaving and along with the thoughts of thinking of a future with Liam by her side. She turned to look at him and opened her mouth, but her words were cut out by her ringing cellphone. She reached for her smartphone inside her white Balenciaga purse. She looked at the caller ID displayed on the phone screen. She answered the call and placed the phone near her ear. “Hello, Harry,” she said.
At that moment, Liam instantly turned to look at her. He grabbed his cellphone from his pocket and held it in his hand. He took Caroline’s phone from her hand and she spoke, “what are you-?”
Right then and there, Liam threw both phones into the water. Caroline looked over the railing and saw nothing but bubbles in the water. She looked back at him and uttered, “Liam, what the hell?”
“No distractions.” Caroline glared at him. “I was in the middle of a conversation. If you would have at least one drop of decorum in you, you would have waited for me to end the call and then asked me to turn off my cellphone. Why do you have to be so impulsive?”
Liam was about to do something impulsive again, but instead, he let out a sigh and spoke in a rather calm and sweet tone, “Caroline, I don’t want you to keep contact with him.” Caroline crossed her arms and raised her eyebrow. She was about to give him a piece of her mind when he said, “just the thought of you having contact with him makes me sick. I don’t want you to talk to any other man. I don’t want you to look at any other man besides me.”
“Liam, you are no one to tell me what I can and what I cannot do. Get that through your head.”
“Caroline, you have to understand I get jealous when I see my wife talking to other men.”
“What- your what?” He gently grasped her hands and said, “Caroline, we are still married.”
“No, that can’t be. You signed the divorce papers, didn’t you?” He shook his head. Caroline retrieved her hands and uttered, “Liam, what is going through your mind? I truly wish I could understand you, but you are so difficult to understand.” Out of frustration, a tear began to stream down Caroline’s cheek. “I don’t want you toying with me any longer. I decided to dispel from you four years ago because I was trying to protect myself, but now...”
She added, “now you have decided to come back into my life, and for what? To drive me insane? To play with my emotions? Liam, I am not a toy you can just when you are bored. I let you into my life for this long maybe because I subconsciously clung to the hope of having someone by my side. Of being validated. Of being loved. But I am done with you, Liam. I cannot do this anymore. I can’t have you ruining me anymore. You have deceived everyone with your act of being engaged to Rebecca. Liam, I refuse to be just another woman in your life. I refuse to let you walk all over me. So, please. Just leave me alone.”
Caroline wiped away the tears streaming down her face and she turned around. She was about to walk away when he gripped her wrist. He tugged on her wrist, bringing her into his arm. He wrapped her in his arms. She buried her face against his chest as the tears continued to pour out of her eyes. “Caroline, I’m sorry,” he whispered. He looked out to the horizon as a tear escaped his eye.
“I’m sorry for forcing you into my life. I’m sorry for treating you so poorly. I’m sorry for bringing so much misfortune into your life. I’m sorry for not giving you the life you deserve. I’m sorry for being so selfish for just thinking of my own feelings. I’m sorry I never learned to express my emotions. I’m sorry for being a selfish bastard the thought of you being away from me pains me. I’m sorry for not being able to stay away from you. I’m sorry I could not be a better man. I’m sorry I could not be a better husband. I’m sorry I couldn’t protect you from myself. I’m sorry I could not protect you and our unborn child four years ago. I’m sorry I am a coward who hid his feelings in hopes of not getting hurt. I’m sorry I lied to you four years ago. I’m sorry I told you I never had feelings for you when it wasn’t true. I’m sorry I decided to drive you away thinking it was best for both of us. I’m sorry I decided to force myself back into your life because being away from you was killing me. I’m sorry I couldn’t stay away from you. I’m sorry I can’t forget you and move on. I’m sorry for not being able to let you lead a happy life without me. I’m sorry for believing you to be my soulmate. I’m sorry for being in love with you since we were young. I’m sorry for being so obsessed with you I couldn’t wait to get older to marry you. I’m sorry for not being able to open up and tell you how I felt without hurting you. I’m sorry for trying to find someone to love and hurting you in the process. I’m sorry I couldn’t be the right man for you. I’m sorry I couldn’t fucking stay away from you, knowing full well it was best for you. I’m sorry I couldn’t protect you from me. I’m sorry for not putting you before my own selfish needs. I’m sorry I couldn’t make you feel loved. I’m sorry I couldn’t express the feelings I had buried inside. I’m sorry I couldn’t stay away from you. I’m sorry I couldn’t be happy without having you by my side. I’m sorry only you brought me happiness. I’m sorry I felt sad when you were sad. I’m sorry I felt angry when you were angry. I’m sorry I felt happy when you were happy. I’m sorry...”
Caroline finally opened her eyes. She looked into his eyes. Her hand instantly traveled up to his face. She placed her hand against his cheek and wiped off the tear creeping down his cheek. “I’m sorry...”
“Shh...” Caroline uttered, “Liam, this is so hard to process. You have to understand -if you are looking for forgiveness, I cannot give you that. At least not now. I don’t think I will be able to forgive you anytime soon, either. I truly wish I could just forgive and forget, but I can’t. I truly wish you would have been honest with me since the beginning. I truly wish you wouldn’t have lied to me. I truly wish you would have never hindered me. But you know what I don’t regret happening, I don’t regret you telling me all the things you did four years ago. I don’t regret listening to your harsh words. I don’t regret looking into your eyes as you told me did not love me. I don’t regret feeling how real your words were. I don’t regret you driving me out of your life as if I were some disposable object you could throw away when you got bored. I don’t regret any of this because for once, I got to see the real you. Your real emotions. But at the same time -at the same time, I felt you were not trying to hurt me, you were trying to protect yourself.”
The tears pouring from her eyes made it hard for her to continue. “Those words were not real,” Liam explained. “But they felt real, Liam,” Caroline countered. “I spent the past four years thinking about you, unable to forget you. Unable to stop thinking of you. Unable to stop myself from wondering about how you were. I spent the past four years, dwelling in what-ifs. ‘What if we had never met?’, ‘What if his words were all a lie?’, ‘What if he still loves me?’, ‘What if he still thinks of me?’, ‘What if everything was just an act?’, ‘What if I run into his arm?’, ‘What if I seek that warmth into his arms I desperately miss?’”