Over the next few weeks, Evan found himself spending more and more time at Samantha’s. He also found himself lying to Emma more than he intended to. Of course, he didn’t want to lie, but it seemed like the more time he spent with Samantha, the better his relationship was with Emma, sexually speaking, anyway.
The first night he spent with Emma after he full-filled his fantasy therapy session with Samantha, he was pretty sure they’d had the best sex since the start of their relationship. He might have even had the best sex of his own life.
Emma had rolled off him, breathing heavily. She laid flat on the bed and erupted with laughter.
“What’s so funny,” Evan asked, afraid he had done something wrong.
Emma shot up in bed and turned to him. “Evan! That was amazing!” She laid back down on the bed and wiped beads of sweat off her forward. “I mean, sex with you is always great, but you were so attentive. I don’t mean to make your head big, but you’re honestly the best lover I’ve ever had.”
Evan’s smile grew as he mentally gave himself a pat on the back.
“Let’s do it again,” she stated, climbing back onto Evan. They spent the next four hours tangled up in each other.
Evan knew there was no turning back. As much as he didn’t want to admit it, his relationship with Emma was better than ever, and he had Samantha to thank for it.
Evan pulled his mustang into a rear parking spot outside the neighborhood grocery store and turned off the ignition. It was Friday evening. He had just gotten off work and planned to stay the night at Emma’s, but he wanted to grab a few things before heading to her place. At the top of his list was an expensive bottle of champagne. There was no reason to celebrate other than the new Marketing Director at his job was working out better than he could have imagined, and mainly because he and Emma were on cloud 9. Life was perfect. Perhaps, too perfect. Evan kept waiting for the other shoe to drop, like for Samantha to go crazy and tell Emma everything. But, so far, she had kept Evan’s secret. He trusted her.
Strutting toward the grocery store entrance, Evan admired the sporadic glimpses of the ocean he could see between the rolling dunes across the street from the grocery store. Living in Florida was nothing but paradise. That reminded him that Emma was supposed to be closing on an ocean-front condo earlier that day. He’d have to ask her how it went. Hopefully, a successful closing was another reason to pop the bubbly.
Two women looked him up and down as he strolled through the glass entry doors. “Good evening, ladies,” he smiled and grabbed a handbasket to his right.
Both women blushed and giggled, making their way past him without responding.
He was on fire.
Evan made his way up and down two aisles, gathering a few things along the way to the wine aisle. He planned to grab the most expensive bottle of champagne that the store offered. But, as he rounded the corner, he stopped in his tracks.
Standing just eight or so feet before him was Amanda. The only thing separating them was her grocery cart full of produce. At first, she didn’t see him because she was reaching for a box of cereal on the top shelf. After grabbing the box, she placed it in her cart and looked up, catching Evan’s stare.
Evan looked away, unwilling to maintain eye contact. He wanted to curse at her for telling Samantha all his deep, dark secrets, but instead, he swerved his cart to the right and passed her rapidly without saying a word.
He could sense that his passive behavior confused her. Evan had never ignored Amanda. In fact, he spent a good month or two trying to win her back after they broke up.
“Evan!” Amanda’s voice grew louder as he continued walking away.
Then, he stopped and turned to her. “Why!?”
Amanda jumped at the tone of his voice. Even his own tone surprised Evan.
Amanda’s pleading expression softened him, but he wasn’t about to show it. “Why did you tell Samantha?”
Her mouth dropped. She was speechless.
Evan took two steps forward and raised his hand, pointing at her. “I trusted you. I told you every deep, dark secret about me, and you had to go and tell your cousin!? I didn’t even think you talked to her anymore!”
Evan watched Amanda press her lips together curtly. He expected her reaction to be nothing other than defensive. But it wasn’t.
“I’m so sorry, Evan. I promise you I didn’t mean to tell her. I, I… God, there’s no excuse. I’m so sorry.”
Evan softened his shoulders. As much as he wanted to, he couldn’t stay mad at Amanda. “Why did you tell her, then?”
Amanda gripped the handles of her grocery cart and bowed her head. She looked back at Evan. “Samantha asked me to have dinner with her. Of course, I didn’t want to, but I started to feel guilty for ignoring her. As much as I hate her sometimes, we have a history, you know?”
Evan nodded. Blood was always thicker than water. He realized that after a cousin of his had sex with his girlfriend in high school. He refused to speak to his girlfriend after he discovered what had happened, but he was still close to his cousin to the day.
“After a few drinks we started letting loose. For a minute, I felt like I had my cousin back. It reminded me of old times when we were so close.”
Evan was about to stop her, to tell her that what she did was okay. Amanda didn't betray his trust on purpose. He knew it.
“But then,” she continued, “she asked me why we broke up.”
Evan could sense Amanda’s regret turn to anger.
“I’d had a lot of wine. I was drunk, quite frankly. Her question made me sad.” Amanda locked eyes with Evan.
Evan’s initial reaction was to reach out to pull her close, but that would have made things awkward. So instead, he stayed at arm's length, waiting for her to continue.
“I told her everything. I didn’t mean to. I was drunk.”
Evan moved around Amanda’s cart and gently grabbed her arm to pull her close. In an instant, she fell into his arms and began to cry. His body stiffened. This wasn’t the reaction he had expected.
Within seconds, Amanda pulled away and wiped a tear from her cheek. “Sorry,” she muttered between breaths. “I’m not sad,” she said, looking into Evan’s eyes.
Evan raised his eyebrows. “You’re not?”
“No,” she coldly stated. “I’m pissed at myself for not remembering what a snake Samantha can be.”