“Ian, what are you doing here?” I asked, making sure not to be rude to him or anything.
“I was just walking by, I was actually out having lunch with a friend. I was just heading back to work when I saw you exiting the shop, so I thought I’d say hi,” Ian responded smoothly. But then, why did I get the feeling that he was lying; then again, I was never a good judge of character.
“Oh okay, well hello, but I better get going, bye, Ian,” I muttered. Hopefully forever.
“Wait, how about we grab a cup of coffee?” Ian suggested making me cringe.
“Maybe next time, I just texted the driver, he would be coming to pick me up soon,” I lied, desperately wanting to get away from him.
“Oh well, how about day after tomorrow, we’ll have coffee then?” Ian asked making me wish I left with Amanda instead of choosing to go wandering through the shops of New York.
“Actually, I have plans with my husband that day, maybe some other time,” I excused.
“Oh right, I forgot you were married now, congratulations, Mrs. Benson,” Ian replied coldly, making me wonder what was the reason behind the change of tone.
“Thank you,” I said with a smile. Just then a familiar black BMW stopped next to us. The door of the driver’s opened and Dan got out and silently opened the back door for me.
To say I was grateful for Dan showing up would be an understatement. I turned to Ian only to see him shooting daggers at an oblivous Dan. I actually had a smile on my face at seeing the driver show up.
“Well, my driver is here, I should get going, bye, Ian,” I chirped.
“Yes, you take care now, Hailey, I’ll see you soon,” Ian said it like a promise that sent shivers of dread up my spine. Ian then turned and walked away, but not before shooting Dan another pointed glare.
I narrowed my eyes and his retreating figure, then turned and slipped inside the back passenger seat. Dan closed the door softly and went back to sit in his own seat. He drove out on to the busy roads of New York, meanwhile my mind kept replaying the meeting with Ian. Why couldn’t he just leave me alone? Why was I getting creepy vibes off of him? Was Ian dangerous?
When I reached the estate, my home, I immediately skipped inside, my shopping bags in hand. I set the shopping bags on the table and flopped on the sofa sighing in relief. I glanced at the clock to see it was 4:00 pm, four more hours until Theodore came back. Not knowing what to do, I kicked off my shoes and splayed them on top of the table next to my bags. I grabbed the remote and turned on the TV.
“Oh, Mrs. Benson, you’re back, how was your trip?” Julie asked while wiping her hands on a handkerchief.
“Julie, I told you, call me Hailey, and I had a great time with Mandi,” I replied with a small smile.
Julie along with a bunch of other staff had moved in with us, that was why I had nothing to do in the house. They had come in the morning, and Julie was the main housekeeper; she was also incharge of all the maids and supervised them. I could’ve cooked lunch or something but I was missing Amanda a lot so decided to have lunch with her instead.
“Shall I take these bags to your room, Hailey?” Julie asked softly.
“No it’s alright, I’ll take them myself,” I told her to which she immediately started shaking her head.
“No no, it’s alright, I’ll take them to your room, you just sit back and relax, would you like anything, tea? Snacks?” Julie inquired in a motherly tone.
“No thank you, Julie, I’m good,” I replied and closed my eyes. Gosh, it felt good to be home, I really didn’t like staying on my feet at all! Julie nodded, grabbed the bags and walked out of the living room, leaving me watching season 3 of Revenge.
I was so engrossed in the seventh episode of Revenge that my heart jumped in my throat at hearing my cell phone ring. I took a breath while clutching my heart, willing it to slow down, then grabbed my phone from the table and accepted the call without bothering to check the caller ID.
“Flower, how are you?” Theodore’s deep, husky voice asked from the other side.
“I’m fine, how are you?” I asked him with a smile. I couldn’t believe how much I was missing him. This was the first time—since we got the married—that Theodore and I had been apart.
“I’m good, how was your lunch with Amanda?” Theodore inquired. My heart swelled at hearing him ask about my day.
“Lunch was wonderful, by the way when are you coming home?” I queried even though I already knew the answer.
“In a couple of hours, what did you do after you had your lunch?” Theodore questioned. I frowned in confusion. Was it just me, or did Theodore knew something?
“I thought about window shopping but ended up buying quite a few things,” I chuckled but Theodore did not reciprocate.
“I’ll see you when I’ll get back, love you,” Theodore said curtly and hung up without even hearing my reply.
I removed the phone from my ear and stared at it like it held all the answers to the world. Why did it feel like Theodore was angry? Did I do something that upset him? If so, he could’ve just told me over the phone.
Deciding not to dwell too much on Theodore’s unusual mood, I threw my phone beside me then settled back in my usual position to watch Revenge. Unfortunately, after the phone call, my mind failed to let Amanda Clark or Emily Thorne rule it. My mind kept replaying the conversation I had with Theodore a few seconds ago, knowing that there was something bothering him, but what?
At exactly 7:30 pm, the front door was opened by Lucy, one of the maids, and Theodore walked in looking as sexy as ever. I was glad that he was half and hour early. His jaw supported a five o’ clock shadow, his tie hung loose around his neck, the top two buttons of his shirt were undone, giving him a rugged look.
“Hello, Theo—” Theodore cut me off by placing his lips on mine in a mind numbing kiss. His arms snaked around my waist keeping me in place. I clutched his shirt tightly not caring if I wrinkled it and responded to his kiss with equal fervor. He gently bit my lip, demanding entrance which I gave willingly, my heart dancing in bliss.
When we broke apart both of us were breathing heavily with a smile on my face. Theodore begun kissing my cheek, my jaw, and going down to my neck making goosebumps erupt on my skin.
“This is how I want you to say hello to me whenever I come home okay, sweetheart,” Theodore murmured against my lips before giving me another tender kiss.
“O—okay,” I muttered lost in his kisses.
“I want to take you right here right now, but I’m hungry, let’s have dinner,” Theodore stated before taking my hand and leading us to the dining room.
“I told Julie to serve dinner a while ago,” I told him, glad that he seemed to be in a good mood.
We both entered the grand dining room that was way too spacious to be called a dining room. A huge crystal chandlier hung in the center of room, with at least fifty bulbs all lit up and the light reflecting off of the hundreds of crystals making the room extremely bright. There were beautiful fixtures that decorated the room. A couple of paintings were hung on the walls. The windows overlooked the backyard providing a spectacular view.
The dining table itself was another matter entirely. Made of solid oak, the dining table was three-quarter the length of the dining room. It was big enough to sit twenty six guests comfortably with at least one foot space in between every chair. The chairs were high-backed and designed from the same solid oak in a very intricate pattern. In the center of the table was a giant floral centerpiece and two antique candlebra placed on either side of the floral centerpiece, each big enough for four candles.
One of the servers pulled out the chair situated at the head of the table and the one on the immediate right side of the table. Theodore sat at the head of the table while I sat on his immediate right. The table was already set with the dishes. The cutlery was placed on a small napkin on our right, while the other napkins were placed right next to the cutlery in the shape of some kind of a bird. The glasses were so clean they looked as if they were made of crystal. I just hoped they weren’t actually made of crystal. Crystal was expensive.
There were currently three male servers present, all dressed in white shirt and black slacks; two of the servers had napkins draped on their arms giving off a very professional image.
As soon as we sat Julie emerged from the kitchen door which was situated across the entrance door, carrying a dish containing rice. Behind her, a couple of other maids followed holding dishes in their hands with delicious food that had my stomach rumbling.
Putting the dishes gently on the table, Julie asked if the food she made was okay, to which Theodore and I nodded in affirmative. With a small smile, Julie turned and went back in the kitchen with the other two maids.
Theodore and I wasted no time in filling our plates with food. Not only did it look and smelled divine, it tasted amazing as well. I felt really lucky that I would get to eat food this delicious for the rest of my life. Our cooking staff really was amazing.
Throughtout the whole dinner, Theodore and I made light conversation. I mainly asked how his day went to which he replied that he couldn’t wait for me to come back to work as he missed me a lot. I blushed at hearing those words. In response, I told Theodore that I missed him a lot as well—which was true. The waiters were eerily silent, that at one point I asked Theodore if they were mute. He chuckled and shook his head in amusement making me glower.
“Amanda and I are going to go shopping tomorrow,” I told Theodore while rubbing lotion on my feet. We were now in our bedroom after having dinner; Theodore was removing his shoes while I was getting ready for bed.
“You bought so many outfits today, why do you want to go again tomorrow?” Theodore asked curtly making me frown. What just happened? Why did his mood suddenly change?
“Yeah, but I doubt I would buy much, I just mainly want to spend time with Amanda,” I responded warily.
“You want to spend time with Amanda or Ian?” Theodore questioned bitterly igniting my temper.
“Excuse me, what the hell are you talking about?” I asked annoyed that he would bring Ian in the middle of a civil conversation.
“Don’t act like you don’t know what I’m talking about, telling me you have plans with Amanda and then go off to meet Ian behind my back,” Theodore snarled turning to me.
“What the hell are you saying, Theodore, why are you accusing me like this?”
“You know exactly what I’m talking about. But since you’re pretending to be clueless I’ll tell you anyway; did you go see Ian today, Hailey? And don’t lie to me because I know you did,” Theodore uttered.
“Were you spying on me?” I asked flabbergasted. I couldn’t believe the nerve of this man.
“No, unlike you, I don’t go around spying on my spouse. Dan told me everything when he came to pick me up from work, and to say I was shocked would be understatement. I told you before, Hailey, once you break my trust you could never get it back, guess you had zero regards for my feelings,” Theodore seethed fueling my temper with every word.
“Now hold up there, I did not break your trust, I didn’t go to meet Ian, he was there when I left the shoe shop. I saw him and he said hello and congratulated me on our wedding. I wasn’t going to waste my time with him, and then Dan came and we left. There was nothing I did that you would accuse me like this, Theodore,” I countered my voice rising along with my temper.
“Well next time, don’t even bother saying hello, stay away from him,” Theodore ordered and my ire grew.
“You may be my husband, Theodore, but that doesn’t mean you can tell me what to do or who to meet, you understand me?” I shouted, “I’ll go wherever the hell I want with whoever the hell I want, you can’t stop me,” I seethed my eye narrowing.
Theodore let an audible sigh. Meanwhile, I was barely hanging on to my sanity, my anger clouding my brain. Theodore made a move to come towards me but I stepped back putting space between us.
“Don’t touch me,” I said.
“You don’t get to say those words to me,” Theodore protested.
“And you don’t get to accuse me of cheating on you!” I yelled, tears streaming down my face, “I would never cheat on you, you’re suppose to me trust me! You told me to trust you, Theodore, and yet you don’t trust me, that is not fair,” I finished, breathing heavily.
“You’re right, sweetheart, I’m sorry,” he came closer but I couldn’t back up as I was pressed against the wall, “forgive me, flower. I trust you, it’s him I don’t trust, please darling, forgive me, I shouldn’t have accused you like this, I’m sorry,” he apologized, guilt and remorse filling his gray eyes.
I was still angry at him—over what he did, but his sincere apology cooled down the fire of wrath burning within me. However, despite his apology, I was still hurt over his accusations. He needed to trust me if our marriage was going to work.
“I forgive you, Theodore, but I can’t sleep in the same bed with you tonight, please go sleep in the other room or I’ll go and sleep in the other room,” I stated and went to side step Theodore but he blocked my way.
“Baby, don’t do this, I can’t sleep without you in my arms,” Theodore argued trying to thaw out the walls—that I just built around my heart—with his words. But I wouldn’t budge. He needed to learn that he couldn’t just treat me like I was inferior to him; he needed to treat and respect me as an equal.
“No, Theodore, I’m sorry, you need to realize that you can’t talk to me like I’m an object or inferior to you, I am your wife, and you have to treat me with equality, because I’m not going to settle for anything less,” I told him firmly making sure to maintain eye contact.
“And you won’t have to settle for anything less, sweetheart, but don’t do this, don’t deprive me of you, please,” Theodore pleaded.
I just shook my head. As much as I wanted to give into Theodore I couldn’t. I couldn’t be weak at this moment, because who knew that if I did give in now, Theodore would take advantage of my weakness in the future, and I couldn’t have that.
“I’m sorry, Theodore,” I went and got under the duvet, “close the door when you leave, good night,” I said and closed my eyes.
An arm suddenly circled my waist making me yelp in surprise. My eyes flew open while my back met with a warm, hard chest.
“I refuse to sleep without you,” Theodore mumbled.
I wiggled under the duvet, trying to break out of his hold but my efforts were futile. The man was pure strength and muscles. “And I refuse to be treated like an object. I deserve respect,” I countered, not giving up my struggles.
“Stop struggling or else I’ll be force to take you right here,” Theodore warned causing me to stop immediately.
“You wouldn’t,” I said, wanting to make sure he wouldn’t take me against my will.
Theodore chuckled. “No, but it worked didn’t it, you stopped struggling, good girl,” Theodore said and kissed me shoulder.
I sighed. “You’re not leaving, are you?” I meant it as more of a statement rather than a question.
“Nope, go to sleep, flower, it’s getting late,” Theodore told me pinning my legs under his, effectively removing all sort of escape for me.
I closed my eyes. Even though I was still mad at him, I had to admit I was glad that he was there sleeping next to me. I had gotten used to sleeping with Theodore’s arms around me, making me feel protected and loved.
“Good night, princess, I love you,” Theodore whispered kissing my temple.
I didn’t reply, instead let sleep overtake me. However, I replied to him in my mind.
Good night, Theodore, I love you.