Corporate Bride

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Sydney had not had a good night’s sleep since that night she had the conversation with Anderson in the restroom. No, she could not forget that look in his eyes when she told him she was with Gary. Although it had been a lie, she had seen how shocked he had been. He had believed her words and frankly, she wanted it that way. She did not want him coming after her because she feared he was only lying to her. What if, he was still resentful and just said those things to get her to return to him? Only Lord knows what devious plans he has in stored for her. He could be planning a public humiliation or even worse...

“Sydney,” Kari called her name, drawing her out of her reverie.

“What?” She glanced at her PA, with a confused expression.

“What makes you think Anderson is planning something against you?” She asked, confusing Sydney even more. “Because he asked you, to come back to him, does not mean he is planning something.” When Sydney looked surprised, Kari decided to tell her. “You were saying it out loud.”

“Oh,” was all Sydney could mutter.

“But really, Sydney, I don’t think Anderson said that so he would have revenge on you. I think he really means it.”

“You should have seen the look in his eyes.” Sydney sighed, looking out the window of the moving car. “I could not tell whether he was telling the truth or not.”

“See?” Kari said, while taking her hand. “He could be serious about wanting you back.”

“No he isn’t.” Sydney insisted.

“He broke up with his girlfriend, for crying out loud!”

“Kari, let’s drop it. I don’t want to talk about it anymore.” Sydney crossed her arms on her chest.

“Sydney, I love you and I want you to be happy. But right now, you are acting like a crazy bitch who is stopping herself from being happy because she is afraid.”

Sydney ignored her, but unfortunately, Kari’s words had stuck a nerve. Bitterness rose in her throat and she swallowed it hard. Was she a crazy bitch who was stopping herself from being happy because she afraid? Yes, she was, but that was not all. She was frightened, scared and going crazy because she did not think she had suffered enough for hurting him. She did not think she would have him back as easily as he was coming to her. She had expected karma to punish her even more for leaving him. That is why she was scared to go to him. He could be really wanting her back, but the thought that she had not finished paying for her sins, could not let her go back to him.

“Don’t turn a blind eye to something good and let him get away from you again.” Kari spoke after some time.

Sydney ignored her and continued to look out the window, praying for the car to reach their destination fast, so she would get some fresh air to release her tension. Thankfully, the vehicle pulled to a stop and she quickly opened the door before the chauffeur could unbuckle himself. She was greeted with the breathtaking view of the Eiffel tower. Her eyes bulged as she stared up at the magnificent piece of metal.

“Wow!” Kari gasped from beside her.

“I know right?” She agreed, finally looking away.

There were people, mostly tourists, all around the place. Coffee shops and other stores lined the streets, with painters, photographers, street performers and many more people, all around. Paris was a beautiful place and she was glad to be there.

“Call me when you are ready to go home.” The chauffeur spoke to them in his heavily accented voice before starting the car and driving away.

Kari took Sydney’s arm and together, they walked the streets, admiring the beautiful things. The purpose for which they had come to Paris was past, but Sydney just wanted to spend a few more days in the city of love before heading home.

“Come, there’s a guy playing a piano.” Kari pulled her towards the direction of the melodious tune. There was a crowd surrounding the pianist, so they had to push their way to the front row. Sydney was surprised when she saw the person playing it. Her lips parted as she spoke his name.

“Hansen?” He raised his head and glanced at her for a quick second before going back to playing his notes. She was surprised as to why he did not say anything to her. There was no, Sydney how have you been? Or, Sydney I am so glad to see you. She felt a bit disappointed. After not seeing him for three years, she had expected a happy reunion. Perhaps was he ignoring her because he also now resented her for his mother’s death?

“Sydney,” Kari tugged at her elbow. “Look,” she pointed and Sydney looked in that direction.

Anderson stood a few meters away from her, with eyes locked on hers. Her heart started pounding in her chest at the sight of him. All sort of questions raced through her mind. What was he doing here? Why was he staring so intensively at her? Why did he stare as if she was the only one that mattered? Most importantly, why did he seem to be everywhere she goes? Was he following her? He took a step forward and walked until he was standing beside her. With hands in his pockets and head tilted to the side, he spoke.

“He lost his memories.” Her eyes quickly darted to Hansen. “It happened after Mary died. The shock of losing both parents put him in a coma for months. When he woke up, he did not remember the events that led to it. I sacrificed a lot to keep it a secret from the world, that’s why you did not hear about it.”

Sydney was dumbfounded. She did not believe that he was going through something like this. All this while, she had thought Hansen was probably busy working somewhere. Now, guilt was consuming her. She could not believe she had not come looking for them after the accident. However, it was not entirely her fault. Anderson had been the one to cast her out of their lives. “I... I am sorry.” She stuttered, gaze falling to the ground. “I didn’t know you were in so much trouble. I should have come looking for you.”

“No, it’s not your fault.” She felt his hand covers hers. A bolt shot right up her spine at the touch of his hand. It had been a long time since they touched, so the effect was alarming. Her heart started hammering against her ribcage, threatening to burst out.

“Anderson,” she spoke his name in such a low whisper that she thought he did not hear her.

“Sydney, please listen to me.” He squeezed her hand affectionately and then entwined their fingers. She drew a sharp breath at the hurricane of emotions that hit her. Her brain wanted her to ask him to go away and leave her alone. It wanted her to ask him to stop following her, but her heart was singing a different tune. It wanted her to consider the fact that she had already suffered enough for her mistake, by watching him date other women for three years. It wanted her to consider the fact that he asking her to come back to him, was because karma was no longer working against her.

“Please don’t ask me to...”

“Come back to me.” He spoke the words she was hoping he would not speak. “Please, come back to me. Be mine again.” He was almost begging.

A lump formed in her throat and she swallowed hard. "I'm sorry, I can't." She told him in all honesty, avoiding his gaze that looked hurt.

"Why?" He asked, as she withdrew her hand.

Sydney took a deep breath. How was she supposed to tell him that she was not ready yet? No! She was not ready to come back to him. Many things had happened between them in the past and a lot more things were already happening. They both hurt each other. Sydney especially, felt hurt the most. She was still hurting even, so she could not possibly get back with him. Anderson was the love of her life, true, but how could she be with him when she doubted his intentions. A relationship is supposed to be built on trust but right now trust was the last thing she shared with him. He had changed this passed three years and she changed to. A lot has changed for them both. Hence what they needed was some time apart. They needed to really think about what they truly wanted. And right now what Sydney needed was healing. She had suffered a lot and needed true healing, away from him.

"Anderson," she blinked and a tear rolled out of her eye. "I am not ready yet to be yours again."

"Sydney," he caught her so fast, she did not see it coming until she was pressed against him torso. His cologne hit her hard and she drew a sharp intake of breath. He still wore the same mucky scent even after all these years. The feel of his arms around her was great and she wished she could stay here forever. "I will wait for you my love."

Sydney could only sniff.

"I will wait even if I have to wait forever, Sydney." He drew back and held her at arms length. Cupping her face, he whipped at her tears with his thumbs. Lowering his face, he planted a chaste kiss to her forehead.

"Goodbye Anderson." She whispered.

"No. Not goodbye." He drew back suddenly, taking his warmth and comfort with him. "It's see you later, my love." With those parting words, he walked away while making a silent promise to get her back at all costs.

See you at the sequel, lovely readers.

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