Welcome To Heartbreak

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Chapter 25

August was ending, and that meant the heat would soon go away and be replaced by the cold weather, which I hated. But honestly, it really didn’t make any difference, given that I seldom got out of the Coopers’ house to either go to the beach or to probably enjoy a good run under the rain.

It was 5 PM, and I was outside the Coopers house, waiting for two guests, actually. One of them, I didn’t know who it was, and it had been Mr. Cooper to give me that order - personally. He said I was to welcome a new guest we’d have for a while. I had to do what I was told, but I did it gladly, given that I was also personally waiting for someone else that was supposed to arrive at the same time - Alexis.

Last time we’d spoken, she’d given me her number, so that I’d call her whenever I needed. Well, now I needed. Why? Because I’d realized that what Alexis herself and Allison, Adam’s mother, had said about me and Adam... it was the right thing to do.

Alexis had said it was worth it, because she really believed Adam loved me more than Rachel. As for Allison, she’d almost made me promise that I wouldn’t let the same story repeat itself, because she didn’t want me to end up like her, and her son, Adam, to end up like Mr. Cooper, his father, if I truly believed I loved Adam and vice-versa.

Now, Alexis was Adam’s best friend, and Allison was Adam’s mother, and regardless of the fact that Adam believed his mother was dead and had never met her, I couldn’t really ignore the advices and beliefs of the two women that cared the most about Adam, right?

Only a fool would ignore those two women, and I wasn’t about to continue to be one, so after one week, I’d made a decision. I’d talk to Alexis about my choice concerning Adam, and from there... I was hoping she’d help me, because I had no idea of how to be with Adam, after what I’d said to him last time we’d been together, which had ended up with us in bed. And also because I really didn’t know what to do to get him... how to start, I mean.

Concluding, I was doing what Allison had told me. I was ignoring my instincts, and convincing myself that maybe I should try my best and maybe... maybe Adam and I had a chance to be together.

All of a sudden, the noise of the gate opening drew me back to reality. I immediately straightened myself, hoping it would be Mr. Cooper’s guest, so that I could come back for Alexis. I just hoped it wouldn’t be Alexis right now, because then our conversation would have to wait, given that I was supposed to receive a guest.

However, when the car got inside the Cooper’s property, I knew it wasn’t either Alexis or Mr. Cooper’s guest. In fact, it was the unmistakable red Porsche, being driven by no one other than Adam himself. Great, I thought. Just what I needed, really.

I watched him approaching the garages, but he didn’t park his expensive car inside one. He just killed the engine, got out, locked the car and when he turned to walk to the house and spotted me, he halted and stared.

I couldn’t feel more uncomfortable, really. After all, we hadn’t talked since the last time I’d paid him a visit on his bedroom. I’d avoided him every time I knew there was a chance to cross paths with him.

Fingers crossed, I hoped he’d walk straight to the door, but he didn’t. In fact, he came right towards me. I wanted to move away, I really wanted, but when he pierced through me with those icy blue eyes, I found myself unable to move a finger.

When he reached me, he appeared too worn-out. As far as I knew, Adam was apparently pretty busy setting up everything for his clinic. When he looked down at me with those icy blue eyes, I just felt that need to hold onto him. Unfortunately, I couldn’t do it. I’d decided to get him, but... now wasn’t really a good time.

I gazed into his blue eyes and wondered what he wanted from me, given that he hadn’t tried to talk to me throughout the week. So I sighed tiredly, and then asked, “What do you want, Adam? We’re outside the house. Someone might see us and complain to-”

“I just wanted to know how you’ve been doing, kid.” He said, cutting me off. God, no, I hated when he spoke in that pleading way, as if he was in pain.

“You know me,” I said, shrugging a shoulder, “Just getting by, trying not to get in trouble. You?”

“Tired. I guess I don’t need to say why, do I?”

I shook my head, “No, you don’t. The maids never get tired of speaking about you and everything you’ve been doing for the clinic.” I commented, running away from his piercing gaze. I didn’t know why, but looking at him when he appeared so exhausted and weak, it made me feel... guilty, as if all the fatigue he felt was because of me. Before I knew it, I was already saying, “Look, Adam, about the last time we spoke, I-”

“You’re not going to apologize, are you?” He cut me off, with a faint smile appearing on his lips.

Caught off guard, I even stuttered a little, “I-I... yes, I-”

“I bet you wouldn’t be apologizing if I didn’t look like shit.” He told me, interrupting me again. For some moments, I didn’t speak, and just stared back at him. It was probably true. If I’d seen him arriving with Rachel, I possibly would’ve ignored the way he looked, and would’ve just thought about getting him from her.

“Probably...” I grumbled, biting my lower lip.

“You really can’t stand seeing me like this, can you?” And so the caring and painful way he looked down at me broke my heart right there, no matter how hard he tried to hide it with his smile. God, I so wanted him!

Still, I ignored that need, and slightly shook my head and shrugged my shoulders, offering him a feeble smile before I admitted it, “You’re my weakness, Adam, and that’s the plain truth. Just the thought of you looking that hurt, or in pain, or simply exhausted, I...” I trailed off, feeling once more heartbroken. “It’s like... it’s like I feel your pain and exhaustion...”

Adam just sighed and didn’t reply, but looked at me, locking my eyes with his gaze. It felt like if there were just us two in the world. Did he... did he feel the same way I did? Did he feel that need to hug me, kiss me... make love to me? I bit my lower lip, trying to restrain from holding onto to him. It was easy to avoid Adam whenever he wasn’t that close, but when he stood right before me...

Too lost in Adam, I didn’t know we had company until someone else cleared up his throat. In that very moment, I woke up from that brief reverie, and looked at who stood at our side.

A tall man, with light brown hair and hazel eyes was looking at both of us, with a wide grin on his face. Adam surely knew him, because when he became aware of the man’s presence and recognized him, he said, “Robert! What... What are you doing here? I didn’t know you’d be visiting us! Dad didn’t tell me anything!”

Robert? I’ve heard that name before, I suddenly thought for myself, not being able to take my eyes off him.

Adam quickly hugged the man in a friendly way, which seemed to share Mr. Cooper’s same age. “You father invited me to spend a couple of days here, since I was unable to come here on his birthday, given that I received a last minute call to work. However... I heard it was pretty interesting.” And then the man was gazing at me, in a mysterious way. I immediately looked away, embarrassed, knowing he was referring to that little showdown on Mr. Cooper’s birthday. It’s impolite to stare, Eva.

“Oh, I see.” I heard Adam, stepping backwards to stand beside me once more. His eyes had darkened and he’d stiffened. “My dad told you about us, didn’t he?”

“About u-us?” I stuttered, when Adam pointed at me and him.

Adam ignored what I said, but questioned me, “Why were you here, Eva?”

With an eyebrow arched, I replied, suspicious, “Your father told me to wait for a guest, so that was why I was here.”

Adam then shook his head in a disapproving way. “He did it on purpose, didn’t he?” Adam said, looking back at Robert. “He wanted you to see her. Well, not that your curiosity was any less, I bet.”

It was then when my eyes widened in amazement and surprise. This was Robert! The man I’d heard Mr. Cooper talk on the phone about Adam and I! That was why the name sounded so familiar! I tried to hide my guilty and surprised look, and tried to relax, which was rather difficult.

“Even if your father hadn’t told me she’d be the one waiting for me,” Robert started, glancing at me. “I would’ve guessed, anyway.”

“Oh, really? How?”

“It was pretty clear you two have something going on by the way I caught you two looking at each other. And since she’s the only maid you were ever involved with-”

“We don’t have anything going on... not anymore.” Adam snapped. Judging by his tone of voice, I knew Adam was pretty angry about what was going on. I didn’t know why, but I wasn’t. Maybe, because I was already so used to people gossiping about Adam and I...

“Then you have unfinished business to take care of.”

Before Adam freaked about what Robert had just said, I cleared my throat, deliberately. Both men immediately focused on me, and assessing Adam’s fierce expression, I guess he hadn’t liked my interruption. At any rate, I had a chore to do, so I said, “Well, I’m supposed to take you to Mr. Cooper, and-”

“I’ll do it, Eva.”

“But-”

“My father won’t complain, don’t worry. Robert has already seen you, so... If he dares to say something, just talk to me-”

“One more reason for me to think she’s the one. You’d never defend a maid.” Robert interrupted, laughing. That perky mood probably annoyed Adam even more, but before he could say something else, Robert looked down at me, again, and smiled nicely. “But don’t worry, I’ll tell Arthur I didn’t need you to accompany me. From what I was told about you, I think you’ve gone through a lot already. Anyway, shall we go inside?”

“Sure.” Just like that, Robert started walking, clearly dismissing me, though Adam stayed behind. He leaned down on me, and whispered, “Don’t worry about him, kid. He’s cool. Anyway, we’ll talk about this, later.” After saying that, Adam lips curled in a weak smile and then turned to leave me alone, tagging along with Robert to his mansion.

I admitted I was somewhat surprised. Adam had caught me by surprise with a minor detail ”We’ll talk about this, later.” What, he’d pay me a visit tonight? Like if we just hadn’t gone through anything at all?

In that moment, I heard my inner thoughts, which somehow sounded like something Alexis would say after a scene like this, ”And that is why I think it’s worth trying to get him. If he truly loved Rachel, he’d control himself, Eva. In fact, he wouldn’t have even come to you before Robert arrived.”

Well, it made sense if he wanted to talk to me about Robert. It felt as if he was a new player I needed to learn how to deal with. Still, I felt he was cool, even if Adam hadn’t told me. By the way he spoke to Adam about us... he was cool with it, not to mention Adam didn’t appear to be as angry as he would if someone else had commented our involvement.

Thinking about Robert and Adam’s reactions to his appearance, I stood there waiting for Alexis, which arrived just a few minutes after they’d left me. I watched her park a black Ferrari right beside Adam’s car. When she got out, she walked up to me, with a grin on her face, as always.

“I am so glad you came, Alexis!” I told her, beaming.

“Well, I said I’d help you whenever you needed, right?” She said, tossing her shining blonde hair back. “Besides, you said it was an emergency and that it was about Adam. If I hadn’t said I’d help you whenever you needed, that would be enough to spike my curiosity.”

I giggled, feeling nervous before such a woman. She looked as if she was all women’s perfection and confidence reunited in just one body - hers. I could only wish being half of what she was. Her life was probably great, while mine was just a complete mess.

“You didn’t tell Adam you’d be visiting me, right?” I remembered to ask, since I’d previously thought about this. If I was going to have that conversation with Alexis, Adam couldn’t found out she’d been here.

“Rest assured, I didn’t, Eva. Anyway, shall we talk in a more private place?”

“Oh, sure. We can go to my room, though we have to be careful about Adam...”

“You’re saying we have to sneak in?” She asked, taking off her Gucci sunglasses. I nodded, hoping she wouldn’t pick on that. I watched her shrug a shoulder, and then looked at the mansion with her blue-green eyes. “Fine by me! Shall we go, then?”

I grinned and nodded, once more. Then, we both walked up to the house and got inside silently. Since everyone was too busy cleaning or doing chores, the entrance hall was always pretty empty around the afternoon, so Alexis and I weren’t spotted by anyone on our way to my bedroom. However, on the first floor, I heard Adam’s voice coming from his father’s office, just like Alexis did, but none of us understood what he said. We were more worried in reaching my room without being noticed.

We managed to do that, thank god. When we walked inside my room, I was the last one, so I closed the door carefully. Then, when I turned around, Alexis was already sat at the edge of my bed, legs crossed, looking at me with a curious and mysterious gaze, and grinning. I couldn’t feel any more pressured, really.

“So, we can finally talk.” She remarked, locking my eyes with hers. “Why did you say this was an emergency?”

“Well... I... How should I say it....” I didn’t know why, but the words I should be saying weren’t coming out of my mouth, and I had no clue why. Was it because, after I’d say them, I’d be officially fighting for Adam? I’d be officially going for another probable heartbreak? Because, after all, I wasn’t sure, and neither was Alexis, that Adam would leave Rachel for me. She hadn’t given me any guarantees; she’d just said it was worth to try! So what if it wasn’t? What if I was just going to hurt myself even more?

As if to reassure me, I heard Allison’s voice on my head, ”If you’re so sure Adam’s the love of your life and that he loves you as much as you love him... Then, go for it. Ignore every instinct that tells you that you can’t do it, and ignore everyone who tells you to back away and quit."

Yes! Adam’s the love of your life, Eva! I told myself. Fight for him!

And so I started my fight... by revealing my decision to Adam’s best friend. “I’m done, Alexis.” I abruptly said, catching her off guard, though then she understood. I bit my lower lip when she tried to read my mind, but I didn’t crack under the pressure. In fact, I continued, “I’m done being so weak, knowing I probably have a shot with Adam and don’t do a damn thing about it. If you say it’s worth the risk... then I’m all for it.”

Wow. That didn’t even sound like me. It’s like I hadn’t even doubted myself moments before saying that!

Alexis just sighed and then spoke as if I’d just freed her, “Thank god you’ve decided! Two weeks, Eva! Why the hell did you need two weeks to know you should fight for Adam, if you know you both need each other?”

I just shrugged and replied, somewhat hesitant, “I’m just afraid of getting hurt, Alexis. I mean, after all I went through because of Adam... I don’t want to be heartbroken, again. But if you’re so sure I should try... then, why not? I’m already miserable without him; I can’t lose any more than this, can I?”

I could only win... since I’d already lost. I mean, one thing was guaranteed. This could all be in vain, right? No matter how sure Alexis was, Adam was still a mystery. But since I’d already lost Adam to Rachel... I couldn’t lose any more than what I already had, really. So I could only win.

“Well, that’s a way to put things, sure, but you need to be confident, because if you don’t... You might lose Adam.” She let the sentence hung on purpose, watching the impact of her words on me.

Still, I gave her a quick - and sad - response, looking down at my feet, “I never had him to begin with, did I?”

“Oh, you had, and still have, Eva.” And before I knew, Alexis’s hand was framing my face, gently forcing me to look at her. “And you have to hold onto that thought, if you want to overthrow everything that’s pushing Adam away from you!”

“But... how should I start?” I finally asked her, since that was one of the foremost questions that had been wondered through my mind, after I’d considered Alexis and Allison’s advices. “I mean, sure, we still speak, but I don’t have the courage to just come to him and say, hey, I’ve made up my mind and I want to-”

“I’ve thought about that, Eva, and I have an idea.” Alexis cut me off, offering me a mysterious - and doubtful - tight-lipped smile. My eyebrow cocked up, suspicious. She worked fast, didn’t she? I’d just finished telling her my decision, and she already had an idea? Alexis read the question in my eyes, and replied while rolling her eyes, “I knew you’d eventually decide this was the best to do, so while I waited, I thought about a way - the right way - for you to tell Adam that you want him and you’re not going to lose him to Rachel.”

God, she was more confident than I was, and I was the one who was supposed to get him back! Why couldn’t I be like Alexis? I envied her so much. She was just perfect, really. Tiredly, and a little frightened, I said, “Go on, then. Tell me what your idea is.”

“Ok, so I think we both agree that you and Adam should talk about this out of the house.” Alexis told me, and of course, I agreed. I had a feeling that Adam might just fight with me about it, and of course, I had to fight back, so the argument would surely be heard throughout the entire house. However... I hoped Adam would give in easily. I just hated to argue with him. “So, I thought that you guys could meet-”

“Alexis,” I interrupted her as soon as she said that. “Adam won’t meet me outside of the house! He-”

“Let me finish, Eva,” Alexis interrupted me, ever so nicely and patiently. “Adam won’t know you’re the one who’s going to meet him. I’m going to say I need to talk to him, and he’ll go to the place I’ve chosen. But then, to his surprise, you’ll be the one there, and not me.”

“That’s when I’m supposed to say I want him?”

“Oh yeah. You’re going to fight him as much as you have to, Eva. You both need it. You’ll start talking to him, right? He’s going to ask you why you’re there instead of me. You’ll answer why, claiming you wanted to be alone with him, to let him know you won’t give up from him, now.”

I bit my lower lip, somewhat apprehensive. It looked too easy. However, I knew better. Adam probably wouldn’t give in that straightforwardly, so that meant I had to have some solid arguments to do this, though he already knew the major one - I loved him.

I got up, and started pacing back and forth, thinking about everything Adam could say to me. “What... what am I supposed to do if Adam actually agrees with this whole thing? And what will I do next, after we’ve been together for quite a while? What if Adam can’t decide anything at all?”

“You’re supposed to spend your time with Adam the way you spent before everything happened, Eva, though this time, I suggest you should be the one going after him. Nevertheless, I admit that Adam won’t refrain from being with you, so I’m pretty sure... he’ll come to you, sometime after.” After listening to Alexis’ answer to one of my questions, I couldn’t stop imagining myself going to Adam’s room, in the middle of the night, to be with him, just like he used to do before everything happened. It would be weird, not to mention I didn’t even have the courage for it, but I guess I’d have to find some for the next weeks.

“You didn’t answer my other question.” I told her, looking sideways at her, as I kept pacing back and forth, feeling too anxious about this whole plan. Honestly, I was afraid it wouldn’t work. I was afraid Adam wouldn’t stop seeing me as the girl he’d fallen for, but couldn’t be with, no matter how much he loved me. I was afraid that this could all be in vain. And no matter how confident I may think I am, sometimes, I know this can only be another way to hurt myself more.

Alexis got up and forced me to stop walking. She was taller than me, so I slightly had to lift my face to gaze into her blue-green eyes, opening the door to my own soul, filled with worries and pain. Her lips curved in a faint smile, and in that moment, she looked as if she could feel everything I felt. “The only thing I have to say about that, Eva... is that you have to believe in Adam’s love for you. You can’t force him to decide, nor would I let you pressure him in any way, but you have to believe Adam will come down to a decision. You have to hope for the best. Besides, I’m certain Adam won’t allow this to happen, if he knows he won’t choose you, though I’m almost sure about what he’ll decide, in the end. But for that, you have to play your cards well, feel confident, and deal with the fact that you’ll be sharing him with Rachel for a while.”

“That is... if Adam decides to go along with this game.”

Alexis sighed, looking exhausted. “He will, Eva. I guarantee you that. He loves you!”

“Yes, but that hasn’t stopped him from choosing Rachel before, has it?” I said a tad bit heatedly. Why did I have to be such a pessimist? I was fighting for the man I loved! Why couldn’t I feel capable of it?

I had the ability to lower Adam’s guard and lure him just the enough, so why the hell did I doubt myself so much?

“Eva, don’t think about-”

“I won’t.” I suddenly said, stepping back, and shaking my head, as if that would make my skeptical thoughts disappear. In that moment, I got mad at myself, for doubting what I could achieve with some effort and confidence. I suddenly felt slightly more self-assured, acknowledging I could draw Adam. “You’re right, Alexis. I have to feel confident; I have to hope for the best! For god’s freaking sake, Adam loves me! That should be enough to make me feel confident, but no! Instead of preparing my strategy to fight for him, I spend my time doubting my own abilities! No, this time, I won’t run away from what I want. This time, I’ll fight and won’t hesitate.”

When I looked at Alexis, she had this huge proud grin on her face, as if all she’d told me had worked and convinced me the enough to fight for Adam. “That’s my girl!” She told me, patting me on the head. “Whenever you need help, call me, ok? Whenever you doubt yourself again, call me! At whatever time you need help to deal with Adam, call me!”

I smiled as well, and told her, “Thanks... for everything, Alexis.” Although Allison’s words had also helped me making up my mind, Alexis had been the one to have the idea, to entice me to fight for Adam, because she believed I could. Because she believed it was worth the risk. And no matter how much I doubted myself at the end of the day, I too believed in her. I wanted to believe this was all worth the risk and in the end... I’d have Adam. “If it hadn’t been for you-”

“Oh, stop it, Eva. You know I’d do anything to make Adam happy. If it means I’ll have to ruin his relationship with my friend Rachel, then I will.” She disclosed. In that instant, I gazed at her, and knew that she really would do anything for Adam, and only Adam. Did he mean that much to her? “Anyway, when do you have your day off? It would be really good if we could pull this off tomorrow.”

I bit my lower lip, and then revealed, “I only have my day off after tomorrow... Can’t this wait?”

“It could,” No, it couldn’t. I could see it in her face. “But I think it would be better for you if you talked to Adam as soon as possible, so that you won’t question yourself, again.” Now, I reckoned she was right about that. And to tell the truth... I wanted to talk to Adam as soon as I could, to let the pressure off my shoulders.

“I doubt Glenda will allow me trade my day off...”

“Well, can’t you say something happened back in your hometown?” And all of a sudden, Alexis was coming up with more ideas than I could count to tell Glenda. But when she got tired, she said, “Why don’t you speak with Mr. Cooper himself? From what Adam told me, he has changed.”

“Yes, but-”

“No buts, Eva. Tomorrow would be perfect! If you told Adam’s father something had happened and you really needed to trade your day off... maybe he would! Just say you’ll compensate the lost hours whenever he needs!” I made a face, but I couldn’t help but to think about that idea. Yes, Mr. Cooper had changed, but it wasn’t like me to take advantage of that. What if he got suspicious? Not to mention his friend was around, now... And even if he appeared nice, he could be everything but that, or Adam wouldn’t have told me that we would talk about him later today.

Still, if Alexis was so keen on making this all happen tomorrow, I could try to speak with Mr. Cooper... Maybe I could even speak to my aunt! The moment that crossed my mind, I found myself shaking my head. Oh no, the last thing I should do was to ask my aunt for help. No matter what I did, she’d always think it had something to do with Adam! Well... most of the times, it had had something to do with Adam, I admitted. Anyway, no, I wouldn’t ask her for help. I’d resolve this by myself! “Ok... I’ll talk to Adam’s father, then. Still, you better hope he’ll agree with this.”

“Don’t fret about it, Eva. I’m sure he will! Don’t start doubting about that, too!”

“Ok, ok, I won’t...” I grumbled, avoiding her eyes.

“Ok, so we’re settled, then. Be ready tomorrow at 6 PM, so be sure to talk to Mr. Cooper like an hour before that, ok, Eva? I’ll take you to the place Adam will be.”

“And what will that place be?”

Alexis shrugged, “I still don’t know, but I’ll think about that tonight. Anyway, I should go now that we’ve talked and resolved this.”

I nodded, and smiled. Although I felt nervous about this whole plan, and afraid that it could possibly not work, I admitted I really couldn’t help but to feel happy about this decision. Maybe it would really be worth the risk. I hoped it would.

At any rate, I accompanied Alexis downstairs, and by the time we reached the main hall, I found my aunt standing right in front of the door. When she saw me walking towards her with Alexis by my side, Adam’s best friend, I noticed her expression darkening. Great. “Eva? Shouldn’t you be-”

“Eva was just accompanying me to the door.” Alexis replied before I could, her dazzling smile in action already. “I asked her to.”

“I see.” My aunt said, glancing. I just lowered my head and let Alexis keep talking, since she seemed so in control of every obstacle on her way. “You came to pay Adam a visit?”

“Yes, but I didn’t find him.”

“Did you ask someone to fetch him?”

“She did,” I cut in, ready to lie, “In fact, I was the one she asked, but I told her Adam was with a guest Mr. Cooper had ordered me to welcome-”

“And since he was with a guest,” Alexis started, ready to complete what I’d just started saying. “I didn’t want to bother him. I can always come back some other time.” Even with Alexis telling her we hadn’t talked about anything, I could tell by my aunt’s expression that she was still suspicious. God, why couldn’t she trust me?

My aunt ignored Alexis’ little speech, and asked, “You’re here since...?”

“I just arrived five minutes ago or so.”

“Interesting.” My aunt grumbled, approaching the both of us. “I noticed your car was outside since half past five, and it’s almost 6 PM.”

Damn. We’d just been caught! I looked at Alexis, since I was visibly panicking. She kept smiling, as if she had already found an answer for my aunt. I watched her open her mouth, but the voice I heard was a lot more different.

“You’ve been here since half past five?” It was Adam’s voice. Before I turned, I noticed Alexis looked slightly less confident. Who wouldn’t? Now Adam would know she’d been here and hadn’t bothered to look for him! We both dared to spin, spotting Adam just a few feet away from us.

“Adam, I-”

“You’re not going to make up some lie, are you?” He threatened her, looking relentless thanks to the way he glared at her with his icy blue eyes.

Then, it was my turn to be glared at. Weak as I was, I couldn’t stand those looks from him, so I let my head fall, though I knew I had to help Alexis. Taking a deep breath, I boldly looked back at Adam with the same intensity and started, “Adam, Alexis just came here to-”

“How about talking to me in your room?” Alexis cut me off, stepping towards her best friend. “I’d like to sit down, not to mention it’s more comfortable and private there.”

Adam’s eyes narrowed, a clear sign he was wary. However, he nodded, and turned around, not saying anything else in front of me. As for Alexis, she looked one last time at me and blinked her eye. I tried to smile, but failed at it. What if Adam pressured Alexis just the enough and she’d end up telling him what we’d been talking about?

Come on, be realistic, Eva, my conscious spoke, Alexis won’t tell Adam! She’s part of the plan! And she knows she might jeopardize the plan by revealing something to him, which she won’t! I tried to focus on those thoughts, but I felt nervous about Adam questioning Alexis. I mean, what would she say to him, if she wouldn’t disclose anything about our plan?

“Are you going to tell me why Alexis came here?” I heard my aunt right behind me. For moments, I’d forgotten about her presence, thanks to Adam’s sudden appearance. I turned and when she looked into my eyes, she added, “She was here for quite a while, and apparently, not once she looked for Adam.”

I sighed, not really knowing what to say, because no matter what I told my aunt, she’d always doubt me. Still, I had to tell her something. “Alexis came here to be with Adam, but as I told you, he was busy with Mr. Cooper’s new guest.”

“But why did she stay here for almost an hour, then?”

“We started talking.” That was the only thing I could say.

“About what?”

“She just wanted to know how I was doing.” I lied, “I mean, after everything that happened Adam and me, she-”

“I didn’t know you were friends-”

“We’re not, but she’s nice.” I hurried to say. Honestly, Alexis was more than nice. If it hadn’t been for her, I was still stuck with only Allison’s words on my mind. “Come on, aunt, let it go. I wasn’t with Adam, was I?” I guess that was my aunt’s fear, and this time, I wasn’t lying. I really hadn’t been with Adam.

My aunt wouldn’t stop staring at me, as if trying to read every deep thought, so I just rolled my eyes and impatiently walked away, at the same time I said, “If you don’t believe me, that’s fine, really. I know I’m not lying, so it’s up to you to decide if you’re going to get suspicious about every freaking thing I say or do.”

Having said that, I rushed for the kitchen, hoping my aunt wouldn’t follow. Thankfully, she didn’t. Maybe she’d stayed behind to think about what I said. It wasn’t a lie. I didn’t want to have to give her an explanation for everything I might do or say in the near future! I knew she’d been very good to me, but she wasn’t my mother! Not to mention I was eighteen! I was officially a grownup, now! If I wanted to take a risk with Adam, the least of my worries was her!

With a lot on my mind to think about, I tried my hard to focus on the chores I was later given by Glenda, but it was more difficult than I thought. All I could think about was Adam, Alexis’ plan, Mr. Cooper and the excuse I’d give him tomorrow to obtain his permission to leave, and the new guest - Robert. His name was all I knew.

That evening, I was told to serve dinner to the Coopers and their guest, Robert. While I’d set the table alongside three more maids, I tried to make them talk about Robert. Unfortunately, they still didn’t speak much to me after everything had happened, not to mention two of them were Linda and Rita, who gossiped about every freaking thing.

The moment Rita crossed my mind, I remembered the cuts I still had on my face and arms. They were almost healed, but I wouldn’t easily forget how I’d gotten them. From what my aunt Deena disclosed, she’d been lucky that Mr. Cooper hadn’t fired her. However, she’d understood she needed to calm down, and so she did.

By the time the Coopers came to have dinner, I was in my corner, watching them sitting them. Adam joined them this evening, but he didn’t notice me. Well, he did, but like always, he decided to ignore, as opposed to Mr. Cooper’s guest, who actually nodded and smiled at me when he recognized me. I smiled back, of course, but I wondered. I hadn’t served them dinner for quite a while, but on this night, I’d been chosen. I couldn’t help but to think if Mr. Cooper had had something to do with it. After all, hadn’t he sent me on purpose to welcome Robert, just so that his guest could see me straight away? But why would he do that, anyway?

Well, Adam had said he was cool. I honestly didn’t know what to think, because he hadn’t spoken directly to me, though I admitted that from what I’d seen... yes, he looked nice, I had to give him that.

Throughout the dinner, I couldn’t help but to notice that Robert himself would sometimes glance at me. Was he that curious? Was he trying to assess me or something? It was thanks to that that I was glad when the dinner ended, and they left for the living room. Adam, once again, didn’t bother to look at me. He’d changed, once more. Had Alexis said... something to him about our plan?

That question took over me while I cleaned the dining room with the other maids, and not once I found an answer that I liked. Well... I guess that was one more reason for Adam to pay me a visit tonight, right?

When I was finished with that last chore, Becca came to the dining room, to warn us all that we were dismissed for the rest of the day. I thanked God for it, because I just wanted to go to my room and think of a good enough excuse that would earn me Mr. Cooper’s permission to leave the house tomorrow at 6 PM.

On the way to my room, Becca was with me. I couldn’t waste this opportunity, so after the initial conversation, I asked her, “So, do you know Mr. Cooper’s guest?”

“Who doesn’t?” Becca immediately said, “He’s Mr. Cooper’s best friend!”

“Really?” Oh, so that explained why I’d heard Mr. Cooper on the phone with him, revealing everything he knew till then about Adam and I.

“They’ve known each other for years, and unlike Mr. Cooper, he’s really nice.”

Adam had told me the same thing, however, he said we’d talk about him later, so that meant something was going on, or Adam wouldn’t look suspicious at all. “Is there anything else I should know about?”

Becca narrowed her eyes, searching for details through the deep corners of her mind that she thought could be helpful. “Oh, yes! I don’t know if Glenda has told you already, but never, ever interrupt a conversation between Mr. Cooper and his friend when they’re locked up in Mr. Cooper’s office.”

I raised an eyebrow, “Why not?”

Becca shrugged her shoulders and replied, “I don’t know, honestly. It’s just an order he gives every time his friend is around. Not even Mrs. Cooper interrupts them.” Weird, I thought. What could they be talking about? I’d ask Becca that, but she’d probably didn’t have any idea. Still, this was more than anyone had told me throughout the rest of the day.

“Thanks for the warning, Becca.” I said when we reached the second floor. “Well, have a goodnight.”

“You too, Eva.” She smiled back at me, and turned around, while I kept going upstairs, until I reached my room.

When I walked in, the first thing I did was to change the ugly uniform for some shorts and a t-shirt. In between, of course, I undid the hideous braid and unleashed my wild black hair. It was still early, and even though I felt tired, I didn’t go to bed. Instead, I went to my balcony and sat there, with a book on my hands.

However, when I started reading, I was trying too hard to focus on the plot, given that what ruled my mind was Adam and everything else related to him - Alexis’ plan, and Robert, Mr. Cooper’s best friend.

Anyway, I knew Adam would come tonight. He had two major reasons to come to me and talk about it all. The least I could do was stay up until everyone had fallen asleep.

***

At 2 AM, I closed the book and walked in my room. It was getting late, and I was getting sleepy. I was aware that Adam sometimes came to my room at unthinkable hours, but I really wouldn’t stay up for much longer. Not to mention my own bed seemed to be calling me... Still, I ignored the call, and went to the bathroom.

Maybe I was wrong about Adam. Or maybe Adam had decided it was better not to pay me any visit. Perhaps Alexis had told him something about our plan and Adam was too furious to even see me. I really hoped it wasn’t the last one.

When I finished brushing my teeth, I walked out of the bathroom, and almost jumped two feet away when I spotted an enormous body standing right beside my bed. “Adam!” I squealed, startled. “You scared the hell out of me!” Nevertheless, that emotion was quickly replaced by a somewhat happy, but anxious and surprised one. After all, Adam had come!

“Sorry.” I waited, thinking he’d say something else, but he didn’t. Instead, he sighed, and folded his arms over his large chest, gazing at me with his icy blue eyes. I bit my lower lip, not knowing what to say. I avoided his eyes, feeling too pressured now. Since I wouldn’t dare to say anything, and Adam knew it, he finally spoke, “You know why I came here, right?”

“Because of Robert?”

“Yes, but now I have one more motive.” He said, pausing. It was my turn to say something, I knew it, but I didn’t have the guts to pronounce Alexis’ name. So, I just nodded. “I was wondering if we could talk about this in my stable.”

In that exact moment, my eyebrow arched up. Why the hell did he want to have that conversation with me so far away? Did he intend to yell or something? “Why can’t we talk here?”

“I want to see my horses, and I’m sure we’re going to yell at each other. Since I’m also certain you don’t want to get caught, I suggest we start moving.” Before I could even say something, Adam turned around and went for the door, not giving me a chance to say anything else. Still, he knew me too well. Of course I didn’t want to have any argument here, if that meant we could get caught!

So, I followed Adam to the stable. Throughout the whole way, we didn’t speak once. I knew Adam wouldn’t dare to speak while in the house, but come on, he could have said something when we were on that earthy path that led us to the stable! I really couldn’t help but to wonder what Alexis had told him. I mean, he wasn’t angry at me when we’d spoken about Robert!

Once we got there, the first thing Adam did was to open the stable and get in. I followed him silently, and then stopped near the hay. Even then, Adam wouldn’t say a thing. He just brought the black stallion inside, along with another smaller brown horse. Then, as if I wasn’t there, he started grooming the black stallion.

I cleared my throat on purpose, but he wouldn’t even glance at me. He was pissing me off a lot. But it was then when I reasoned. Maybe he was calming himself down before talking to me about anything at all. Hadn’t he told me once that his horses helped him relaxing? Holding onto that, I took a deep breath, and asked, “Want some help?”

“Sure,” He said straight away, “You can groom this one.”

“The black one?” My eyes widened right away, since I wasn’t expecting he’d ask me to take care of that one. Of all the horses Adam owned, that was the one that scared me the most. “Are you sure? Because-”

“Stop whining, Eva.” He snapped, looking at me over his shoulder. God, what a temper. “I said he won’t hurt you. He never hurt you before, did he? So, come on here, and help me.”

All of a sudden, Adam stretched out his arm and grabbed me. He pulled me towards him, not as aggressively as I thought he would, and stepped aside so that I’d take his place. I thought he’d move away when he hand me a tool with short teeth, but he didn’t. He actually stayed behind me. He held my hand and forced me to start, silently showing me where I should groom the horse.

“Come on, Adam,” I complained, “I came here to speak to you, not to groom your horses...” Not that I didn’t like it, but all I really wanted was to speak with him!

“Are you going to lie to me if we start talking, then?”

“Why are you even asking me that?” I narrowed my eyes, not understand his question. “You know I don’t lie or hide things from you.” Well, with the exception of his mother’s issue and Alexis’ plan to get him... Well, that was different.

“If you didn’t, you’d have already told me who’d hit you that day.” He retorted, and I knew he was right. However, I wasn’t going to tell him his grandfather had been the one to do that. I just wanted to forget that day.

“I thought you’d forgotten about that.”

“How can I forget that someone hit you, and you still don’t want to tell me who did it?” I must’ve not been grooming right, because Adam gripped my hand and squeezed it, forcing me to groom where he wanted. “The only one that I can think of... is my father.”

“Your father didn’t hit me, Adam! I’ve already told you that!” I wanted to turn around and look at his face, but he wouldn’t let me. He was surrounding me with his arms and huge body. “Besides, I thought we’d come here to talk about Robert and Alexis, not about what happened two weeks ago!”

Adam said nothing at first, but then, too calmly, he whispered in my ear, killing me ever-so softly. “Why would you say Alexis is one of my motives to talk to you?”

“Just because I’m a maid and was stupid enough to fall for you, it doesn’t mean I’m idiot. I saw the way you looked at me when you caught me and Alexis together.” God, he was really bringing out the worse in me!

“Ok, then. So let’s skip a bunch of retorts, and go straight to the point. Why did Alexis come here, if she didn’t have the intention of being with me?”

I immediately panicked when he asked me that. I knew that would be one of tonight’s conversation topics, but now that he’d asked me... Damn. What the hell was I supposed to say? What if I’d give him an answer that had nothing to do with Alexis’? Feeling pressured, I stupidly giggled when I asked, “Hasn’t Alexis told you that, already?”

“Yes,” He said straight away. For the second time that night, Adam leaned down on my ear and whispered, “But I want to hear it from you, too.”

God, what was up with him? He never acted this dominant and dangerous! Anyway, I had to give him an answer. However, how would I know it would be the right one? “Adam, I-”

“Don’t stall, kid.” He cut me off before I even started. “That’s the last thing I want, right now.”

Knowing I wouldn’t be able to run away until I gave the answer he was looking for, I thought of everything I knew about Alexis and about what we’d talked this afternoon. Then, the conversation I’d had with her and my aunt came up in my mind, and honestly... it seemed a good answer to give Adam, as well. Had Alexis told him the same thing I’d told my aunt? Biting my lower lip, I went for it. “Look... Alexis just came to check on me, ok? She just wanted to see how I was doing after that whole thing, Adam.”

“It’s been weeks since everything happened, and she just happened to remember you, today?”

“Of course not! We talked before!” I told him, and that was true. We’d talked when Rachel had disclosed all the lies Adam had told about our involvement. “But, like I said, she just came to check on me, Adam. It’s not my fault your best friend actually cares for me. But, maybe Alexis knows how much I’m suffering and hurting after everything you made me go through. Even your father can see how much I’m hurt! Everyone can see that, but you! Why? Because if you could see it too, you wouldn’t have told me you loved me! You would’ve lied, Adam! Why? Because you’d know it would be easier for me to go through this, knowing you didn’t love me!”

All of a sudden, I turned around aggressively, scaring the stallion and making him walk away from me. I took advantage of that breach and drew back from Adam. It was when I looked at him, and saw the stunned expression on his face, that I knew I’d just said too much. In fact, I’d exploded.

Trying my hard not to shed any tears, I passed by Adam and went to sit down by the hay, burying my head on my hands, and breathing deeply. Don’t cry! That’s the last thing you should do now, Eva! I told myself. I was tired of being this weak! He wouldn’t see me crying today or tomorrow or the next day! Hell, tomorrow, I’d give my best and I’d make him see that he’d made a huge mistake by choosing Rachel!

While I tried to get a hold of myself, I heard Adam walking towards the place I was. “Kid, I-”

“Don’t say anything, Adam, really.” I said, still not daring to lift my head. “That wasn’t supposed to happen. Just give me some time, ok?”

For some moments, Adam didn’t say anything, and I thought he wouldn’t leave me alone, but then he said, “Ok...” By the time he’d taken to say that, I wondered if he’d tried to control that same urge I felt to hold onto him, sometimes.

At any rate, I thought I’d take longer to put myself back together, again. Everything I’d said... I hadn’t even thought about it when the words just blurted out of my mouth, really. However, it was true, and I wasn’t about to deny it, in case Adam questioned me, though I doubted he would. If he didn’t want to end up the way he had last time we’d been alone, he probably wouldn’t dare touching me.

I got up silently, holding my head high. I reached for one brush that looked like Adam’s and dared to approach the third horse that had come in the stable. It was a white one, beautiful. He equaled the stallion in height, beauty, and probably, strength, too. I admitted I was shaking a little when I started grooming him, given that I didn’t know if the horse would react well, but fortunately, the horse didn’t move any more when I started grooming him.

“That’s a Lusitano stallion,” I heard Adam saying. “He’s the oldest of all the horses I have. I was in love with him when I saw him, and just had to buy it.”

I didn’t reply. I just kept gazing at the beautiful animal. How could he be oldest, when he had no trail of old age? And though he was a stallion, he was quieter than the black one. But given that he was the first Adam had bought, he was probably already used to this.

“Listen, Eva, I-”

“If you’re going to talk about what I said moments ago, I’m walking out of here, right now.”

I looked at Adam, frowning. His eyes widened in surprised, but he quickly recovered, “I was just going to ask you if you’d talked to Robert yet.”

My eyebrow cocked up the moment he asked me that. “Why would I talk to him?”

Adam shrugged, while he kept grooming the black stallion. “I’m guessing Robert wants to talk to you. He’s a therapist, and I don’t know why, but he loves talking to me.” Yeah, I wonder why, I thought sarcastically. Seriously, Adam didn’t know why? He was quite a character, and he didn’t even have the conscious of it? “It might be because of the way I can’t control myself or something, but... I don’t know, he sometimes tries to make me talk about my feelings and such. I hate when he acts like that.” I couldn’t help but to say to myself, you probably hate anyone who makes you talk about your feelings.

“But why would he want to talk to me?” Now, I was curious about that minor detail, really.

“Not only he’s my father’s best friend, meaning that my father will want him to talk to us about each other, but he’s always curious about everything freaking thing, especially when it involves me.”

“That was why you wanted to talk with me, tonight? Because you wanted to warn me, so that I wouldn’t reveal anything, and-”

“Eva, don’t put words in my mouth, ok?” Adam snapped, though not as aggressively as I expected. “I’m just saying, that’s all.” Ok, maybe I was exaggerating a little. Adam probably just wanted to warn me about it, so that I wouldn’t be caught off guard. I guess I had to be ready for any questions about Adam, next time I meet him.

“Well, hum... thanks for the warning.”

“But, he’s cool, really.” Adam rushed to say. “Whatever he asks, he doesn’t mean to do any harm, even if my dad asked him to talk to us.” Wow, Adam had a lot of faith in him... At any rate, if he really trusted the guy, then I guess I wouldn’t have any problem with him.

“You really think your father asked him that?”

“I don’t know, but it’s possible, kid.” When I noticed him looking at the way I was grooming the horse, he stopped working on the black stallion, and walked up to me, saying, “Eva, that’s not like that!”

“What?” What was I doing wrong?

“You’re not doing it right, kid.” For the second time, Adam stopped right behind me, and softly grabbed my hand with his, unlike the previous time, “The tool you’re using its called curry, and this one is too harsh to be used on the legs, so don’t use it there, ok?”

“Sure,” I said, happy that I’d learn a grooming lesson.

However, Adam didn’t leave me once I got it straight. He remained behind me, and I could feel his breath on my neck, as if he was trying to provoke me, which I seriously doubted. His hand slid down my arm and up to my neck, very slowly and gently, making me shiver. God, I so missed him doing that... I found myself closing my eyes for a moment, enjoying Adam’s weak moment. Seriously, had he forgotten what I’d said last time we were in his bedroom?

Well, honestly, in that moment, I really didn’t care.

At some point, Adam grabbed my hair, and forced me to lean my head to my right side. He carefully pulled my hair back, and I suddenly felt his lips on my neck, kissing me too smoothly, too gently.

“Adam...” I whispered, knowing I was starting to feel too hot. “Don’t you think we should-”

“I’m getting out of control, kid.” He cut me off, stopping for a moment, though he forced me to turn around and look up at him. His hands now framed my face, as if he wanted to slice me in two with his icy gaze.

“What do you want me to do?”

“Don’t let me do this.” He pleaded, and when he begged, he was always out of control. However, he should know me better. He knew he shouldn’t ask me that. Or maybe, he was saying that, because he was waiting for me to stop him like the last time we’d ended up in his bed.

But that... that had been before I’d decided to get him. Now, I wanted him. I knew tomorrow I’d be with him, but... what if he didn’t accept? What if this would be my last chance to have him this out of control, again? Positive thoughts, Eva, I told myself. You’re not going anywhere if you doubt yourself.

“But what if I want you to get out of control?” I then said in an undertone, wishing he’d just kiss me.

“Then you’re just going to suffer more, kid, you know-”

I didn’t let him finish, because I just pulled his head down and smashed my lips against his. To hell with what he was going to say. I just wrapped my arms around his neck, hoping Adam would do the same. And he did. However, he was more aggressive, thanks to being out of control. He just spun me, grabbed me and pulled me up, forcing me to wrap my legs around his narrow hips.

I knew he was walking, but I didn’t know where we were heading for because I had my eyes closed. However, when Adam leaned down and let me fall towards something soft, I knew straight away that I was lay down on the hay.

And I knew what Adam wanted. The same thing I wanted. And this wasn’t just lust. I loved him. He loved me, he’d said it himself. Why would he lie, anyway? There was no need for that. I wanted to feel him, I wanted to make love to him.

I wanted to become one with him.

“Say you don’t want to do this, kid.” Adam pleaded, before he made a move.

I shook my head, “I know you want it as bad as I want, so don’t stop now, Adam. You’ve come this far... so why not go all the way?” In that moment, I smiled, and Adam recognized my words as being his. It was what he’d said the day we’d kissed without Rick causing it.

Adam still didn’t move, but I did. I reached for his shirt, and pulled him down. He wasn’t fighting me at all, or he wouldn’t have moved when I’d pulled him.

That was another clear sign he wanted it just as bad as I did.

“Say you love me, Adam.” I whispered, craving for his touch, kisses, caresses...

He looked at me, his icy gaze piercing through my body, though instead of weakening me, it was just somehow turning me on. And Adam was aware of it.

He knelt between my legs, and took off his shirt, without me needing to say anything at all. His hands touched my hips and softly grabbed my unusual hot flesh. Yet again, he looked back at me, and while he was leaning down, he whispered with a slightly husky tone, “I love you, Eva. I really do.”

And so I closed my eyes, and let Adam kiss me in his rushed and greedy way, allowing myself to have a night together with him, something I’d been yearning ever since I’d come back to this house.

Tomorrow we’d talk about this.

Tomorrow I’d have him, because I was decided to keep arguing with him, until he accepted my challenge, and Adam would accept my challenge. If he wouldn’t, he probably wouldn’t have even given in to temptation tonight.

It was worthless to mention that, once Adam’s mouth ravished mine and his sizzling body was merged with my throbbing one, those thoughts soon abandoned my mind, and only Adam was there.

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