Sydney never looked so beautiful. That dress, was doing things to her body and his body was reacting to it. Just as this afternoon at the bridal store when he saw her in the wedding gown, this evening gown was also making him loose his mind over how perfectly it fit her.
She descended the staircase and placed her hand in Anderson’s. He planted a light kiss on her cheek. For that split second, his breath fanned on her face, making her weak in the knees. “You look stunning.” He said in a flirty tone, which made her heart do a dance.
Smiling, she linked her arm with his and then complimented him too. “And you look drop-dead gorgeous.”
When they reached the front door, he helped her put her coat on before they stepped out of the house. The limousine was waiting for them outside. Right beside it was a smirking Hansen who stood with his arms crossed. On his face, was a look, which Anderson interpreted very well as the, “I knew this would happen” look.
“Sydney, my god you look gorgeous!” He approached them.
“Thank you.” Sydney left Anderson’s arm and hugged Hansen. “And you do not look too bad yourself.” They drew back and he smiled at her.
“Now, tell me. When did this happen?” He asked. Almost instantly, her cheeks went scarlet, confirming his suspicion.
Sydney glanced back at Anderson whose gaze was already on her. “That’s none of your business.” Anderson came to her rescue, throwing a possessive arm around her waist. “Come, we are getting late for dinner.” He told Sydney and led her away.
The chauffeur was there to open the door for them when they reached the car. Anderson helped Sydney inside. Just as he was getting in, Hansen spoke some words that brought him turning around. “Do not hurt her.”
Anderson smiled at his brother. “I won’t.” Hansen threw his arms around him in a quick hug. When they separated, Anderson examined his brother’s suit. “You are looking great tonight. Are you going somewhere?”
Hansen’s face lit up at the question and that made Anderson suspicious. Whenever his brother was gazing out into space, as he was doing right now, there was only one question to ask. “Who’s the lucky girl?”
A grin found its way onto Hansen’s lips and he sighed. “She is special, that’s all I can say for now.” He said with something like a blush showing on his cheek.
Anderson was happy for his brother. It had been a long time since his brother had gotten serious with a girl. “So who is she?” He asked.
“I am sorry, I can’t tell you. The only thing I can say is; she is special.” Anderson was disappointed, but not mad. If his brother did not want to tell him who she was yet, that meant she really was special and important to him. From the look on his face, he knew his brother had fallen head over heels.
“Alright, I better get going before I am late.” Hansen glanced at his watch and then headed to his car.
Anderson got into the limo and the chauffeur drove them out of the compound. Tonight, he and Sydney were going out on their first date and he could not have been happier. He could not wait to hear about her. Where she grew up? How her family was? What were her favorite things and many more.
They arrived at a luxury restaurant and went in. Sydney was glad that she wore one of her few evening gowns, because if she had not she would have been under-dressed. Everything inside the restaurant screamed luxury, even the private table they sat around in at the back of the restaurant looked fit for a king.
As soon as they ordered, Anderson rained questions on Sydney. She, however, gladly answered every question because she knew this was what they came for. They spoke throughout the meal until dessert came, then she started questioning him.
“Where were you born?”
“According to my mother, it was at the West hospital.” Sydney gasped.
“Really?” He nodded. “My mother used to work there as a midwife.” Now, he gasped. “Well, that was when I was a child and way before she became a drunk.”
“How long did she work there?” He inquired.
“For as long as I can remember. Even before I was born. My dad says she has worked there all her life. She was a committed and dedicated worker, so I still don’t get why they fired her.” She sighed, remembering that day her mother had returned home soaking wet by the rain and had cried all through the night.
“Why did they fire her?”
“I don’t know. She never spoke of it.” She reached for a glass of champagne and sipped. After returning the glass to the table, she questioned further. “So between you and Hansen, who is the oldest?”
“We were both born on the same day and coincidentally at the same hospital.” He said, to which she gasped.
“What? Tell me you guys aren’t twins.”
“We are not.” Now, a puzzled look crossed her face. “My mother and Hansen’s mother were best of friends who were coincidentally pregnant at the same time and went into labor together. Hansen’s mother lost her life while in labor, so my mother decided to adopt him.”
“Wow.” Sydney gasped, surprised that Mary was kind enough to adopt her friend’s child.
“Yes. That is the story of how I got my brother.” Anderson said. “It doesn’t matter if we are not of the same blood. I still love him.” Sydney smiled at him and he returned it.
Their conversation continued and they talked until the closing of the restaurant, before they left. It did not end there. It continued in the car and then they ended up in the living room of Anderson’s mansion drinking while conversing. It was not until Sydney began to yawn, that he said.
“I think we should go to bed.”
“Yes, I totally agree with you.” She yawned again and he started collecting the empty wine bottles scattered on the floor. He was surprised when he counted three bottles. It shocked him how much alcohol they consumed in the past hour.
He stood up, staggering a little. Oh crap, he was almost drank. He drew in a breath and hoped he does not forget the way to the kitchen. Thankfully, he did not and he returned to the living room shortly.
Sydney, although slightly drunk with blurry vision, could not help but ogle at Anderson. Right now, he looked as sexy as hell with his tousled hair, rolled up sleeves, slightly alcohol induced, yet still mesmerizing blue eyes and a peak of an impressive chest showing through his open shirt. Her eyes stayed at his chest area, as she thought of completely undoing all those buttons on his shirt and running her hands over it.
“You seem to like what you are looking at.” He said, sitting beside her.
“Indeed, I do.” His closeness, coupled with the intense way he was looking at her and her curiosity to touch him, made her reach out and undid the buttons on his shirt. Looking into his face, she waited for him to tell her no, but when he remained silent, she gained the confidence to touch him.
Upon doing so, she heard him drew a sharp breath and then her heartbeat picked up. Her fingers trembled as she traced the contours of his chest and abs. locking gazes with him; she noticed his eyes turned smoky with, what was that… desire?
“Sydney, I think we should go to…” Anderson could not finish his statement and she crushed her lips against his. It took him less than a millisecond to respond to the kiss. One of his hands went to her nape, while the other wrapped around her waist. In a swift motion, he pulled her onto his laps, making her straddle him.
Their kisses were ferocious, needy and fueled by desire. Her hands touched every muscle on his chest, igniting something in him that he had never felt before. The emotions were insane and he felt the need to touch her too. His hand left her waist and traveled to the zipper of her dress. Just as he was about to pull it down, it occurred to him what he was doing, then he pulled away, breaking the kiss.
Sydney stared in confusion, not understanding why he pulled away. With a shaky breath, she asked. “What is wrong?”
“We shouldn’t be doing this.” He said, before it dawned on her as well.
Quickly, she got off his laps, whispering apologies. “I am sorry. This is my entire fault. I shouldn’t…” she glanced at his naked chest. “I shouldn’t have done this. I am not myself.”
“I know.” He said, while taking his shirt from the floor, where she had flung it after slipping it out of his arms. “It’s late, let’s get some sleep.”
Sydney, was first to get up. “Good night.” She whispered before running out of the living room and going up the staircase into her room, feeling embarrassed. As she got in bed after taking a shower, she blushed profusely while recalling what she did downstairs and scolding herself for causing such an embarrassing situation.
The days that past next, was lovely. She and Anderson went on many, many dates, spoke a lot about themselves and fell even more deeply in love with each other. With only a few days left until the wedding, Sydney was now sure about marrying him for real, and not on any contract basis. She wanted to tell him. However, she did not find the right time to do it until, tonight.
She was cooking him a very special dinner and then later tell him her plans. She set everything up and waited for him to arrive. He was unaware of her plans, so she did not blame him for still being out. Anyway, she would wait for him until he returned. She sat down, and hoped, however, that she would not fall asleep before he returns.
The humming of a car, reached her ears and she was sure that it was Anderson who has returned home. Finally! She pushed the chair backwards and rushed out of the dining room to meet him.
Upon reaching outside, she came to realize that it was not Anderson. Her heart pounded in her chest as she stared at the black SUV parked before her. She knew this car all too well now. The chauffeur walked out and came to open the door.
A pair of shiny red shoes came out first, then black pants on skinny thighs followed, before she came out fully, in all her devilish glory; Mary Niles. A chill run down Sydney’s spine and she stood frozen to the spot.
Mary walked up to her. “Sydney, I did not want to come all the way here, but I just had to so you know how important this is.” She spoke while removing an envelope from her purse. “This is the amount of money I said I would offer you. Take it, and leave.” She threw the fat envelop at Sydney’s feet.
Sydney looked down at it and then met Mary’s gaze. “I am no longer interested in the offer. I want to stay by Anderson’s side.”
A muscle twitched inside Mary’s jaw as she stepped closer to Sydney, pointing a warning finger at her face. “I think I wasn’t clear enough the first time.” She ran a hard slap on Sydney’s cheek and she stumbled backwards from the force of it. “STAY AWAY FROM MY SON!” She yelled.
“NO!” Sydney yelled back. “I love Anderson and I am marrying him. If you do not like the idea, then find a rope and hang yourself from it.”
Mary’s eyes bulged. She was shocked that Sydney had the guts to speak such words to her. How dare she? Mary was tempted to grab her hair and pull her on the ground, until she begs for mercy. However, she controlled herself. There was another way to get her for this.
“I like your idea. Yes, you are right. I should find a rope, but instead of me, let’s say Adeline will hang from it.” Without much ado, Mary got back into the car and her chauffeur closed the door behind her. He picked up the envelop, from the floor and went round the car to get behind the wheel.
When the engines roared to life, the window rolled down and then Mary added. “Run, Sydney, run.”
She did not need to be told twice, as she run back into the house to pick her purse. Sydney got to the hospital almost midnight, breathless and scared. As she waited for the elevator to take her to the floor Adeline’s room was, images of her mother hanging from the ceiling of her room tormented her. Wrapping her arms around herself, she wondered why the elevator was show today.
Finally, the doors parted and she ran out, moving towards Adeline’s room. She turned the knob and pushed the door open. Her purse slipped out of her hand and fell to the ground with a soft thud as she stared in shock at the figure hanging from the ceiling. It was just as her mind showed it to her. Her mother dangled from the skinniest of ropes, like a plastic bag and tears flooded her eyes.
A lump built in her throat as she shut her eyes and screamed on top of her lungs.
Not before long, a pair of arms wrapped around her. “Sydney!” The voice, which called her name, was familiar, but she did not focus on it. “Sydney!” It came back again, louder this time.
“Sydney!” It was Anderson. Opening her eyes, she was surprised to see him in front of her. “What is wrong? Were you having a nightmare?” He asked.
Puzzled, she glanced round and realized that she was in the dining room and not in her mother’s room. She raised her gaze and found nothing hanging from the ceiling. All at once, flashes of the horrible dream came to her mind and she broke down.
Confused, Anderson brought her into his arms. “Don’t cry Sydney.” He cooed. “Hush, everything will be alright.”
Sydney felt like crying even more, because Anderson was so thoughtful. He did not know why she cried, yet he was consoling her. What more could she ask from him? He was perfect and she loved him. However, his mother was the devil. She wanted her to leave him.
“Sydney, please stop crying. I don’t like it.” He said.
“Please just hold me.” She said and that was what he did.