CHAPTER 19 – HER SECRET
Leaving me alone at the venue, James had left right after Amy had left with Ben. I wasn’t a stupid woman and I could clearly see what was going on. It had all been a little off since James had offered to bring Amy to the beach house. Bonding was bullshit and I knew his intentions. After all we had married to cover his bad image as ladies’ man. The playboy Ashwood had done it again but this time he had messed with the wrong woman.
This son of a bitch had balls to mess with the daughter of the woman he had married few months ago. I wasn’t going to sit and watch him destroy my daughter’s future. I wasn’t going to let her go through the same mistakes as I did in my younger days after Amy’s dad passed away. The illusion of love he was offering was just to get what he wanted from her and after he grew tired of her, he would throw her out of his life like trash.
Amy deserved to be with someone her own age and someone with life ambitions. James was not the man for her and I knew it. Who would have even offered a woman to marry him just for his own reputation? He was a selfish bastard who only thought of himself. I had agreed to marry him knowing this but I had never imagined him to go after my daughter. This was just disgusting! He had the balls to screw my daughter but he was hesitant about telling me what he was doing to her.
Two weeks ago, I had witnessed their wicked foreplay. I was sick to my bones and I wanted to save Amy from the claws of James. She was calling him Daddy and he was punishing her to be a good girl for him… this was sick. I had to save her and send her back to London and after that I had to file in for a divorce. When I arrived back at the house they were arguing, forgetting that I might be around. James’ furious voice was echoing through the walls.
Silence came after few minutes and I tried to figure out what they were doing but without any luck. Before I left the venue, Ben had texted me letting me know that he had dropped Amy off at the house. Ben was an old friend, someone you could consider a friend with benefits. We hooked up occasionally but it never grew to become something more. He was the one who introduced me to James and made this marriage happen.
Everything aside I was close with Ben. He was the only man who was open about what he could offer me and he was always so comforting and helpful when I needed him. After he divorced his last wife we had gotten a lot closer. Without giving it a second thought, I decided call him.
“//Ben...” I said and my voice was shaking. I was afraid that it was too late for me to save Amy from James.
“//Are you okay? Do you want me to come and pick you up?” He said and a hint of worry was in his voice. He cared but did he care enough to help her.
“//James... he is sleeping with Amy.” I said and felt powerless when the words left my mouth. I wanted to barge in to her room and save her but I knew better. She would defend him now since he had already trapped her. She wouldn’t listen or believe in any word I had to say so I had to be smart about this.
“//James... is sleeping with Amy? Your daughter... Amy?” Ben said unable to believe what he had heard.
“//Yes, and I need your help. He is not good for her. She has to return to London. She has a future and dreams she wants to achieve. I can’t let her rot in James’ arms knowing that he will get tired of her fast.” I said thinking about my past mistakes. I had done so much for so little. I had fallen for men who had promised to love me and only me for years and I was still a hopeless case but I didn’t want Amy to become someone like me. A woman desperate for a man’s love.
“//I will come and pick you up.” Ben said before hanging up. He was here within minutes and on the way to his place I felt his hand in mine trying to comfort me. Nobody in the entire world would be able to understand me except this man who was next to me unconditionally.
After a long night at Ben’s house we had talked about how to convince Amy to return to London. Ben had called James to tell him there was an emergency at work and they needed him. After this we headed toward the James’s house to talk with Amy. I was worried that this talk would destroy our fragile relationship entirely. I loved her so much but I wasn’t there for her much while she grew up. She resented me and ran away to study abroad but I was happy for her. I wanted her to have a different life than mine.
“She will eventually understand that you are doing all this for her.” Ben said breaking the silence. I looked up to meet his eyes and nodded. When we arrived at the house I let out a heavy breath and stepped out. It was time to destroy everything I had kept so dear to me. I had to be the bitch she resented so much that she would decide to run away again. She had to hate me and James to move on and live the life she wanted to live.
“Amy?” I said entering the living room. She wasn’t there so I moved up to the second floor where the rooms were located. Knocking on her door I waited for her silent response.
“Come in...” She said and I walked in to find her holding James tux in her arms. When the reality hit her, she dropped the pieces to the ground and looked away. She was feeling guilty.
“Look Amy... I know about you and James.” I said calmly approaching her. She was still avoiding my gaze and when I took her hand in mine I felt her shaking a little. “How long did you think that this could continue behind my back?” I said and her eyes were furious.
“We love each other. This is not just a hook up but you wouldn’t understand that, would you mom? You have only loved yourself since dad passed away and now you are telling me that this hurts you? You don’t even love each other, you don’t even sleep with each other. This marriage is on paper and you are here trying to convince me that you are hurt? I can’t believe how selfish you are.” She said and I looked at her. She was defending a relationship she wasn’t even sure about, her offensive words were clearly a sign.
“Honey...” I said shifting over to the fake Charlotte I had been hiding behind for years. “How can you be sure of our relationship? James and I are married on paper but sex was never off limits in our relationship. We have enjoyed each other’s company more than once. Are you letting him feed you bullshit like your ex-boyfriend did?” I asked pushing her buttons... she was silent and started calculating everything. Confusion and hurt was flashing in her eyes and could feel her hesitating. I was surrounded by countless men in my life and none of them were honest about what they wanted from a woman.
“Have you ever tried to look his name up Amy? His nickname... his past. That might give you an idea about who James is.” I said and she pulled away desperately grabbing her phone. She looked at her screen while the blood left her veins. She was pale within seconds and when she realized that she had been tricked she pushed me away and ran out of the room.
She needed space and I was going to give it to her. Following her down the stairs I kept my distance. She was crying but I was probably the last person she wanted to comfort her. Stepping out of the main entrance she noticed Ben’s car and he stepped out of it approaching her. He seemed concerned and he was talking her down. He cupped her face in his hands wiping the tears. I took my phone out of my purse and snapped a picture. I was determined to break them apart. Amy deserved so much more than what James could offer her.