Clandestine Heart

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Chapter 12

Never seek to tell thy love

Never seek to tell thy love

Love that never told can be

For the gentle wind doth move

Silently, Invisibly

--William Blake

The fresh of cold air filled Tristan’s lungs when he was stepping out from the black, sleek four wheel-drive car. They arrived at his chalet; a beautiful, age blackened wooden building, a miniature of two story of luxurious hotel with perfect background of crystalline, snow covered landscape under brilliant winter-blue sky.

Then, one by one, the passengers who had ridden with him came out also, first it was Amelina then followed by Rosalie and Phoenix. Yet, he did not take any notice at all, not even when Amelina said something about his chalet, Tristan only nodded absentmindedly.

His attention only came to focus when another vehicle with the same brand and color came fully halted behind his car.

And though he wanted to look away, it seemed that his eyes controlled their own volition when he saw a figure of Lara came out from the car.

She’s lovely, very lovely, he thought as he registered her slim body and all that skin on her. He was unable but to skim his gaze over her from head to toe and back again, noting how beautiful she was with her simple monochrome outfits. How gracefully her movement was. How her hair beautifully cascaded to her waist. How…

His observation abruptly was disrupted by his companion’s irksome voice. Irritated, he shifted he shifted his attention from Lara to Amelina.

“So which floor is our room, Tris?” Amelina asked, smiling. “I hope it’s on second floor. I’d love to see view from the window.”

Tristan arched an eyebrow, his expression was formidable. “Our room?” he repeated incredulously. “Mine is in the first floor, but you’re welcomed to have second floor.”

“Ah, of course not.” Amelina’s sultry feminine voice projected an edge of annoyance when she heard his cold reply though she was fast to cover it. “I’ll be sleeping whichever your room is.” She added, flipping her blonde hair before she threw his seductive look at him.

Tristan ignored her gaze. A wave of regret came through him of the thought bringing Amelina. As far as he had known her, she could only stretch her body provocatively, pose and posture. Amelina had little substance as a person. Bringing her here back then, had seemed a passable choice though now Tristan regretted his decision. Not only that Amelina was annoying woman, also the sight of Lara and Blake who had seemed so cozy on each other company. And that angered him the most.

Now, as he saw them being together, was really the sight for sore eyes.

Blake was holding Lara’s upper arm, helping her to walk on the slippery path and she was laughing about something Blake was saying.

Fuck! He cursed mournfully.

The sudden sharp of pain was wrenching his heart. And although the contour of his face was cold, but not his eyes. They mirrored the agony of pain. He averted his eyes and started to take his steps to the porch of his chalet. He curved his hand around Amelina’s waist in which she was gladly to take the opportunity.

Soon, the freshly varnished, oak double entry doors with elegant leaded glass swung open. Three women who all were wearing black and white uniform, welcomed him.

“Welcome back, sir.” Tristan’s housekeeper, Suzie, greeted him warmly. Her head slightly bowed showing him, her respect. “I believe you had a pleasant journey.”

“Thank you, Suzie.” Tristan replied, giving her his eminent smile, then proceeding to step inside his large hall. He then commanded his maids to assist all of his friends and escorted all of them to their respected chambers.

“Certainly Sir,” Suzie obeyed politely.

From the corner of his eyes, Tristan saw that Lara was being escorted to her room in which was in the first floor, next to Abby and Liam’s room, and right across to his room while Blake was on the second floor with Rosalie and Phoenix’s room.

Soon the chattering buzz faded off as they went to their rooms including Tristan and Amelina. And she was babbling over something meaningless that Tristan chose to ignore.

“I’m going to freshen up.” He interrupted in the mid sentences of what Amelina was saying and without waiting for her reply, Tristan went inside his luxurious bathroom.

He locked the door and walked to the sink counter. Absentmindedly, he leaned his hand on one side of the cold white solid marble while the other hand rotated the faucet. He watched the basin slowly being filled with a pool of water, though he did not do anything as his mind was filled with Lara’s face or how Blake really treated her so different than other of his female friends.

His suspicious of Blake’s intention was getting deeper. He easily could confirm that Blake had feeling towards Lara.

Oh, he had witnessed that, last night on the plane. On his plane!

He had stood for while, enough time for him to see how Blake had made her laugh and how they had been in deep conversation as if they’d shared the secret that only two of them had known. But what had made his heart splintered had been when Blake had easily caressed her soft cheek and lingered his fingers there for more than they should have been.

Every time the thoughts of them being together had driven him insane.

He shook his head in despair trying to erase the vision of them being together. But they kept coming back. An uncontrollable anger was rising in him that could not be contained for another minute. Hatred seethed though every fiber of his being. His left ironclad fist savagely punched the mirror with an earth-shattering crash. Within seconds the mirror Tristan was unconsciously subjected with his furious anger, broken into hundreds of missing puzzle of his reflection.

The first wave of pain refreshed him when he saw his blood covered one-third of it. Nevertheless he did not care. He squeezed his bleeding fist trying to suppress his emotion that he even no longer could resist. He braced himself against the ceramic wall, staring but not seeing his blood splashed everywhere. His breathing was uneven, but it was due more of his nerves than the pain he had.

How could he endure seeing Lara with Blake? Especially when now, his brain told him that she eventually managed to get over him yet he could not accept the fact.

Another pain rushed him and he knew that soon when everybody was out from their rooms and seeing him in this state, they would freak out and they would be fussy over it. He needed to clean up his wound before they would find out.

Tristan washed his wounded hand and wrapped it with white towel to stop the bleeding before he opened his bathroom door and paced across his room.

He felt relief Amelina was nowhere in the room. Perhaps she was already out somewhere adoring his household, Tristan did not care. As long as she didn’t see him bleeding like this. Otherwise he had to face another drama scene from this drama queen. And he hated it.

His master bedroom was sound proof when he opened it, though then he only paused at the threshold. The door only widened slightly, yet enough to allow small space for him to peep through, looking straight at the back of Lara’s fragile figure next to the bookcase.

Relishing this moment, he took the opportunity to look at her at this distance. He knew she was lost in whatever she was reading and did not realize that he was watching her silently. And somehow he was feeling fortunate to be able to look at her.

Greedily he kept on savoring his moment. He could not keep his eyes to stop staring at her and drinking the sight of her that had always stirred and brought up an unexplainable feeling that he had thought he kept it covered at the darkness part of his heart.

Tristan noticed that she moved her standing position, now he could see her visage clearly. The face that had been filling his dreams at night and constantly filled his mind at days.

What would be her reaction of I just come running to her and hold her tight? What if I whisper how much I regret the decision I made? What if…

Suddenly another figure of woman belonged to Amelina blocking his view and she was gasped in horror when she saw the red blood seeped from the towel. “Tristan! Oh my God…What happened to you?!”

“I fell.” He informed carelessly, knowing the fact that Lara already saw him also still standing at the threshold. He took a sharp breath, lamented his luck already to keep on staring at Lara just a little bit more already had already gone.

“Tristan, you’re bleeding profusely.” Amelina said with a pitiful sight, lifting up his wounded hand and her face turned into sickeningly pale. “Oh, no I can’t see blood this much. I get nausea…I just can’t…”

“Don’t worry, I get myself the first-aid kit. And please don’t make a fuss about it. I don’t want everybody knows.” He passed Amelina aside, irritated by the commotion and hyperventilation she created but he did not move another step when Lara approached him.

“I get the first-aid kit.” Lara volunteered. Her voice was faint though she gave him a comforting smile that Tristan was not able to look away. His face was stiffened. He even was unable to form a reply. “Just sit down there, with Amelina.” She added and then went to another side of the house.

Tristan only stood still as Lara disappeared for his sight.

“Tristan let’s sit down before anything happen to both of us.” Amelina’s voice made him return from his absent-minded tremor.

His eyes flicked to Amelina and smiled at her, trying to be pleasant. “Amelina, since you’re afraid of blood, why don’t you look for one of the maid and ask to clean to the bathroom? I don’t want you to get hurt also. I can manage to cure my wound. Or just go to the room and get rest, I’ll call the maid to clean up.” He paused for a moment. “Lara’s here to help also.”

Amelina touched both of his cheeks. “Are you sure?” Her pallor was saturnine though there was a certain of relief that she did not need to tend his wound.

Tristan nodded. “Yes, go get some rest now.” He said, releasing himself from Amelina’s touch and walked towards the nearest chair.

“I’ll be in our room.” Amelina said and wait for a moment for his reply and when he did not, she kept on walking towards the room and closed the door behind.

Tristan took a deep heave when he plopped down on the velvety dark blue chair. He lifted and pressed his hand in order to prevent more blood. The pain was stronger now.

Tristan closed his eyes to resist the pain, didn’t know that Lara had returned.

“Where’s Amelina?” Lara’s soft voice but stiff as frozen metal made him to open his eyes.

Tristan’s eyes collided with hers. He did not say anything only stared at her as if she were a dainty ghost and not a real person.

Lara seemed to misunderstand his silence for more pain. She immediately approached him and sat next to him without any hesitation. She placed the first-aid kit box onto the side table table. “How are you feeling?”

His eyes bored on Lara’s beautiful face. “I’m fine.”

“Have you washed your hand?”

Tristan nodded. “Yes.”

“Can I see your hand?” She asked permission. Hesitated clearly registered on her face.

Trisan cast her a caustic look. “I think you’ve to do that, right? In order to put some medicine on my hand.”

Lara only smiled and then carefully took his hand and removed the towel. It seemed that blood had stopped oozing from the laceration.

“I hope the cut isn’t deep. Though I see few small glasses.” Lara murmured thoughtfully examining his hand, unaware her head almost lay on his chest or the fresh scent of her tresses danced in his nose when he inhaled in deeply.

He almost lifted and slit his other hand to her waist for there was nothing he wanted now but to pull her in his arms and felt the warmth of her body.

“I’ll put…” Lara’s voice faltered as she looked up and once again their eyes met.

For it seemed like eternity they did not move an inch. Tristan kept his gaze locked on her brown eyes. They were so utterly beautiful, dark and so hypnotic, that he felt as if he had been nearly drowning in their bittersweet chocolate depth. Her lips parted so succulently. He wanted to dip his head to hers and brush his lips over hers right now. So focused on the thought was he, in fact he actually began to lower his head until…

Until Lara awkwardly moved away, making slight turn so that she was on her back.

Just like that, the spell was broken and Tristan took a harsh breath. He was furious that Lara avoided his eyes. Though in the split second before her gaze had altered to other direction, he had seen something like had been on Phoenix’s birthday when he had caressed her face.

Yes, he saw her reaction was blunt but he was not blind to realize her reaction, no matter how clever she hid it. And he wanted to confirm that she still had feeling. Frustration stabbed at him, poisonously mixing with hope. The question was, how to do it?

Lara sorted through the contents of first-aid kit and found a bottle of ethyl alcohol and a bandage. But she hesitated to turn her direction back at him as she kept on gyrating the bottle in her hand.

“Aren’t you going to put the medicine on my hand?”

Lara swiveled and gave him her tight smile. “I’m not sure if I can do it.” Her words were jerky. “I think it’s better Blake to do it instead of me.”

The moment he had heard Blake’s name, his heart fury burned. Implacable. Especially when Blake’s name came from her lips in gentle voice, like it was sacred.

“No.” He replied coldly. “I’m sure anyone can do that…There’s no need to call the great surgeon to help me.”

“Tristan, I’m really not good.” She declared, her eyes still refused to meet his eyes. “I’ll call Blake, or Liam to treat you.” She added and was about to get up when Tristan without his thinking, pulling her back down to the sofa.

“No. There’s no need to invite the whole population for my small wound. Can you just please do it? I hate to see more people knowing about it.” He almost pleaded sternly.

Lara gulped reluctance clearly visible on her expression but she finally gave in. She started to take the nearest cushion and putting it on her laps. She took his hand, propping it against the cushion then she prodded with the antiseptic wipes.

Sometimes she lifted her head watching his face to see if he flinched, but Tristan did not show any emotion. His eyes only stared at her all the time.

“There’s a small piece of glass pricked in your hand. I need to take it.” She informed taking the tweezers. She paused and inhaled deeply before taking his hand again. “It’s gonna be hurt, a bit.” Lara said and carefully pinned it.

“Shh…” Tristan winched, as the glass was being able to be taken from his skin.

Lara looked up to see his face. “I’m sorry.” She murmured apologetically. Her voice was quiet and timid.

“That’s okay.” He said as softly as her voice. He kept on staring at her, did not want to miss this opportunity to be as this close as right now with her.

With slow motion, he leaned forward and he heard there was a soft rasp in her throat as he closed the gap between them that now only mere breath apart.

Lara was trying to elude from their closeness by pulling away but Tristan was faster. He caught her wrist with his right hand, forcing her to be in the same position.

Her body stiffened and those beautiful, lustrous eyes that had gazed into his so ardently now bewildered. “What are you doing?”

“I just want to say thank you. Why? Am I nor allowed to do that?”

Lara shook her head. “I just do like everybody does.” She said quietly.

“Well, you’re the one who’s helping me now.” He said, turning her hand so that her palm was up. Then he brought her hand to his lips and kissed the center of her palm, all that time, his eyes did not leave her.

He watched her expression change again more bewilderment, layered over the shock. Immediately she pulled her wrist away, as if his touch contaminated her.

“Let me put some bandage now.”

“Lara…” His voice barely ranked as a whisper when he called out her name.

“I need to wrap the wound.” She said, biting at her lip. “So it will be done soon.”

His mouth was a thin line and his eyes flashed fire. He was angry but he managed to keep quiet as Lara bandaged the hand in white gauze. The dull ache continued yet he chose to ignore it.

There was more pain than this one. Her rejection of his touch was acid on his soul.

The ice splintered in his spine. He could not accept the fact. But why should he be angry? What should he tell her? Tell her his feeling? Tell her that? When all this time he had seemed to disregard her presence?

“Okay, it’s done now.” Lara said eventually breaking off their silence though, still did not meet his eyes when she closed the box and stood up.

Tristan opened his mouth to speak, but she forestalled him.

“Let your hand rest for a while.” She said as she noted his hand. Her voice sounded strangulated but she made herself to go on. “Uhm…I think you should keep away your hand near water for one or two days.”

Tristan stood up. “Lara wait…” He spoke urgently. “I need…”

“I’m going to put this box inside.” She said and without saying another word, she left him. Again. Just like last time on Phoenix’s Birthday. Without giving him any chance to speak.

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