CHAPTER 26: TREPIDATION
I fell back against the desk in shock, slumping against it as I saw Reid’s lips moving frantically but I heard nothing as I slowly zoned out, my eyes seeing black.
I felt him grab my shoulders and shake me slightly to break me out of my reverie but I just blankly gazed at him before he scooped me into his arms, picking me from the desk and carrying me out of his study.
As he stepped out of the door, I jumped back into reality, like an old vespa kickstarting back to life and latched onto his arms.
“Put me down.”
Reid listened, looking at my face closely to see some sign of sudden shock but before he could say anything, I pushed past him, running towards the kitchen to grab my phone.
I quickly made my way back to him and handed it over to him.
He pursed his lips and grabbed the phone, pushing in the numbers quickly and placing the phone next to his ear as his other hand reached for my hand by my side and he engulfed it in his, kissing the top of my knuckles.
“Dave? This is Rei-” He was cut off as Dave hastily wished him, his shrill voice reaching my ears as he quickly mumbled a few incoherent words that were missed by my yearning ears.
“Who did this?” I shifted slightly as I saw a deep frown form on his forehead.
Seeing me squirm, he pulled me close to him, his hand leaving mine as he kissed the top of my forehead and let his hand glide down my back till it rested against my lower back.
“Did you get it removed yet?”
I squirmed in his grip. Reid was a powerful man and one of the richest in the business world but...
“Dave, do it fast. People shouldn’t get a word of this...”
He then ended the call and handed me back my phone.
“Who did this?”
“Not Bea...Just someone who claimed to have spotted us somewhere and earned a few dollars to spit out some words.”
“Is there any...”
“Evidence? No, luckily no. For all people know, it’s just a rumor.” He let out a sigh of relief which was followed by my own.
I walked into the mansion, trying to be as quiet as possible since it was already past midnight and knowing my mother, she would already be in bed by ten, trying to get her necessary beauty sleep but I didn’t want to take any chances.
As soon as I reached the foot of the stair case, a voice stopped me in my tracks.
“Elizabeth? Is that you?”
I let out a curse as I turned around to see the back of my mother’s head in the living room as she slowly turned around to look at me.
“Yes mum”, I muttered as I made my way across the room to her, a little taken aback by the glass of wine in her hand.
My mother avoided drinking at all costs and when she did, it only meant trouble.
I gulped at the sight of her sharp eyes analyzing each move I made.
“Why don’t you sit down? I have to talk to you.”
I swallowed back my fear, hoping that my mother hadn’t caught a whiff of the insane and scandalous gossip on one of the overly exaggerated blogs online claiming anything about Reid Parker’s scandalous affair with his very own stepsister.
I sat down across from her, nervously crossing my legs over one another and folding my hands in my lap.
As she took another sip from her glass, I couldn’t help but feel like this was some scene from a dramatic movie where the villain prolongs the conversation by having a few sips of alcohol, making everyone wait for the climatic ending, revealing all the secrets, truths and all those things that are too hard to swallow for anyone, all at once.
Except this wasn’t some movie whose rating I read on Imdb and begrudgingly decided to watch but this was, in fact real life, in which my mother was just an oblivious character and not a villain, I was the not so innocent sinner and this whole situation was a complete mess.
I let out a huff and forced myself to gently smile at her, “What’s up mom?” I asked casually, trying to ignore the fact that the first thing she wakes up tomorrow and reads on the paper isn’t going to make her hate me sooner or later.
“I... I just wanted to have a nice little conversation with my daughter. It feels like we haven’t really talked much lately...about everything, this marriage, you living here and...all that.”
“Mom, you don’t need to-”
“No, I do. Of course I do. I know you are a grown woman now...and oh, what a beautiful and smart young lady you have turned out to be.” She sat down next to me, pushing my face closer to hers as she kissed the top of my forehead, “I’m so proud of you sweetheart. I can’t believe that you are earning for yourself now...” She let out a small laugh.
“All I still see is little Elizabeth running around the house, creating a havoc as you chased our cat Oscar, remember him? You cried so much when he died.”
“Yeah, of course I do. He was the only friend I used to have back then.” I laughed as I remembered the lazy cat who used to glare at me and absolutely despise for disturbing his peaceful sleep all the time.
“You did have trouble making friends back then.” She agreed,nodding her head with a smile.
“Still do.” I replied honestly. Apart from Becca, none of my other friendships had lasted for more than an year or two.
“Your dad would have been so proud of you, you know. You were his life.”
I smiled at her, tears threatening to escape my eyes that I tried to control without success.
“I remember when I told him I was pregnant with you...oh he was so happy.” She recalled, her voice full of longing. “We were so young, gosh I was barely 19 and having you...it was beyond amazing and after we found out, we fled.” She again let out a chuckle, “We fled and got married because I was so scared of my parents. We then settled down with your father’s older brother in Seattle and in the next few years, our lives just changed...for the better.” I hugged my mother as I heard a tear slip down her cheek.
I had no idea where this conversation was going even though I very much appreciated it and before I could figure it out, my mother pushed me back by my shoulders, breaking our embrace.
She reached behind her to get a hold of her handbag and pulled something out of it and handed it over to me,making me gasp.
My eyes widened in surprise and my mouth fell open as I saw the pregnancy test kits. “Mom-” I started, trying to tell her I was not pregnant.
“As much as I would like to believe that you have had the flu for the past week, I still don’t believe that you can vomit that lasagna I made for you yesterday for that reason, so I think it’s time.”
Her lasagna was something that I lived for and vomiting it was even something hard for me to take in, or rather should I say take out.
I mentally scolded myself for making a lame ass pun in the middle of such a serious conversation.
“Just take it, Elizabeth. If it is positive... I won’t even ask you who the father is just yet, but all I need to know right now is whether I am going to be a grandmother or not...” She suddenly paused as I tried to take everything all in, “Just remember that whatever happens, I will stand by you.”