I'm uneasy all morning at work, kicking myself over bringing up the boyfriend. Why did I do that? It was so great this morning, so easy and relaxed. Kate's laughter was genuine, and nothing from this morning was marred with her trying to get me to sign an annulment. In fact, I didn't even find the paperwork strategically placed this morning. And I had to bring up the fact that she has a boyfriend in Australia. Because I'm an asshole. Even to myself.
I sigh and shift uncomfortably in my seat. The clothes I'm wearing are starting to itch. Verity found it hilarious when I walked in this morning, even dad and Ryder found their way around a few jokes at my expense. Thank god my tailor is delivering new suits this afternoon, just in time for my business trip tomorrow. Another reason I'm feeling uneasy. I haven't told Kate I would be away for a week. Would she still be there when I come back? The thought she might leave makes my stomach plunge. Maybe I should ask her to come with me...
I push that thought away. She's a means to an end, I need to stop letting her get under my skin. Besides, she has a boyfriend who she's determined to get back to. A boyfriend she has chosen over me. Maybe I should just give her the annulment and send her on her way. There's still two and a half weeks until my 30th. Plenty of time to buy a wife. The thought turns my stomach. I don't want anyone else to play the part of my wife.
Groaning, I place my head on my desk. I haven't got any work done this morning, constantly distracted by thoughts of Kate. I look at the clock and my heart leaps. Almost time for Kate to deliver what god awful lunch she's whipped up today. I shouldn't be excited by that, but I am.
I push the thoughts out of my head and try to focus again on my work. I open my desk drawer, reaching inside to find my favourite pen, which has disappeared yet again from my desk. Searching through the drawer, the light shines off a hint of metal. I reach for it and pick it up between my fingers.
“Huh... didn't know that was in there.” I say out loud. I stare at the wedding ring I found on my finger two years ago. I must have dumped it in my drawer when I returned from Vegas. Out of curiosity, I slip it on my ring finger, trying to forget the last time I tried something on out of curiosity. It fits like a glove. It's a simple platinum band, definitely my taste. The door opens and I lower my hand to the desk. Looking up, I lean back in my seat and smile as Kate walks in.
“Hello wifey.” I say with a cheesy grin. She rolls her eyes, making me chuckle. “What monstrosity are you making me eat today?” I ask. She purses her lips.
“You enjoyed breakfast this morning.” She says.
“Surprisingly, yes.” I smile. I stand and walk around to her, getting close and whispering in her ear. “But there's something else I'd much rather eat.” I say. Her cheeks redden as her breath hitches and she steps away, clearing her throat. I love the way she reacts to me, even if she tries to deny it.
“Gluten free, dairy free, egg free vegan cheese melt.” She says as she hands it to me with a sweet smile. How can they make a melted cheese sandwich without bread? Or cheese?! I paste on a smile, lean over and kiss Kate's cheek.
“Thank you for taking care of me.” I say with the sweetest smile I can muster. I chuckle at the look she gives me, I know she wants to annoy me, to piss me off, and while I'm dying for a steak and a whiskey, not to mention sex, I'm willing to wait her out. She will give in eventually.
I walk over to the couch in my office and take a seat. Unwrapping my "cheese melt", I take a bite. It tastes... well, it tastes like plastic. Plastic seasoned with something to hide the fact that it is actually plastic. I force it down and follow it with a big gulp of water, not missing the satisfied smirk on Kate's face. I give her a big grin.
“Mm so good.” I say. She chuckles and shakes her head. “So, there's something I need to talk to you about.” I say. She raises an eyebrow and takes a seat on the couch next to me. I force down another bite before talking again.
“I have to go to Dallas with Ryder to secure a deal.” I tell her. She nods her head in understanding.
“Oh ok, when?” she asks. I swallow down another mouthful of melted plastic followed by a large gulp of wate.r
“Fly out tomorrow afternoon, we will be there about 5 days.” I tell her. Her brows furrow and I'd love to know what she's thinking right about now. “You can come with us if you'd like, make sure I'm eating properly.” I say with a grin. She laughs that musical laugh making my heart flip. Well that's new.
“I think I'll let you have some time with your brother.” She says. I nod, although disappointment rushes over me. Kate gets up and walks towards the door. “I'll leave you to your work, see you at home dear.” She says sweetly. I chuckle and shake my head as I watch her leave.
The whiskey goes down the back of my throat as smooth as butter and I can't help but moan at my reunion with my liquid love
“Oh, I have missed you.” I say. Ryder chuckles beside me, enjoying his own whiskey sour. I never understood the need to add anything, it's perfect the way it is, why mess with perfection.
“As much as you miss your wife?” he teases. I roll my eyes
“I don't miss her.” I say. Not THAT much anyway. Ryder just laughs and shakes his head
“Sure you don't.” he says sarcastically. I sigh, not wanting to get into this again. Ryder has other ideas “Just admit it, you have feelings for her.” He says.
“No I don't.” I say sternly. I sound like a petulant child, but he has been bugging me since we got on the plane yesterday about Kate.
“Then why don't you sign the annulment?” he says. I shake my head
“You know why.” I reply through clenched teeth. Ryder just grin.s
“Yeah, the will is bullshit. Your life would be a lot easier if you just threw money at someone, sent them away to resorts half the time, so you didn't have to see them, but can still say you’re married.” He says. That would be easier. But I don't want easy. I want Kate. But that doesn't mean I have feelings for her
“And I'd be giving a gold digger what they want, yeah no thanks.” I scoff. I down the rest of my whiskey as Ryder shrugs.
“So get someone in our social circle. You know they'd do it for your connections.” He says. I cringe at the thought. The social elite are worse than the gold diggers. Never actually wanting you for who you are, but how you can better them. That's definitely not going to happen.
“I have a wife already.” I state.
“Who you have feelings for.” Ryder says with a smirk. For fuck sake.
“I DO NOT have feelings for my wife.” I growl. Ryder just chuckles and shakes his head again.
“You put up with a lot to keep her around... just saying.” He says. I do put up with a lot from Kate. But I find I'm impressed with what she comes up with, and a small part of me is excited to see what happens next. Like just this morning she had Uber ears deliver me a vegan breakfast. I didn't know Texas did vegan. Even away she is still trying to annoy me. I chuckle as I think of the annulment papers she sent to the hotel. I took a video of me burning them on the balcony and sent it to her. It's comforting to know that even with the distance between us, we are still the same. “Yep, you have it bad.” Ryder chuckles, pulling me from my thoughts. Ryder slaps me on the back before heading back to the bar for a refill. I wipe the goofy grin off my face that I didn't realize was there. I really need to watch myself around him, he's reading into things that aren't there.
I should have gone to Dallas. I said no because I'd only just got a job, a job that Chase knows nothing about, and I also thought that being away from me, would make him realize that I'm not worth the effort. But I find myself missing him, and that pisses me off. I can't have feelings for Chase, I have a boyfriend, a life back in Perth. A boring life, but a life nonetheless. And here I am pining for a man who sees me as a ticket to his inheritance. On top of that, he's in another state probably fucking random whores to get his fill. The thought fills me with jealousy and rage. And then I get angry at myself for feeling anything for that asshole.
I have barely slept the last week, images of Chase with another woman flooding my mind. So sleep deprived, jealous and absolutely livid, I decide to give him a surprise when he gets home. Something that's guaranteed to piss him off so much, that he's the one who will throw annulment papers at me. And that thought sends a stabbing pain through my heart. I ignore it and push back all thoughts of Chase, focusing instead on the painters, I've spent the rest of my savings to hire.
“Now are you sure you want the glitter paint in this room?” the painter asks for the tenth time. He looks at me like I'm insane, which I probably am, but I smile and nod.
“Yes please! I think it will look so pretty when the sunlight streams in.” I say with a smile. He simply nods, not looking me directly in the eyes, and goes back to his work. It doesn't take them long to finish. Once they have cleaned up all the drop sheets and left the apartment, I go about putting in all the new decor I had bought for this project. My interior decorating skills are finally being used, albeit the rules I'd learned of what not to do.
As I place the fluffy throw pillow shaped like a flamingo on the couch, I stand back and take in my creation. It is... well... as I expected it would be. I take a few photos of each room and send them to the girls. They are sure to get a kick out of this. After sending off the message, I quickly get ready for work and leave the apartment.
I hear the elevator ding and race towards the foyer. Chase is just getting home and there is no way I am missing his reaction. I hear the key in the lock and stand just out of sight, a perfect view point to see Chases face, but where he won't be able to see me. The door swings open and Chase steps in, wheeling his suitcase behind him. He's looking at his phone and hasn't looked up just yet.
I watch as he throws his keys and phone onto the side table and then pauses. His head slowly moves up the bright pink wall in front of him, his shoulders tense as he slowly turns to take in the open living area in front of him. I watch as he stands there, mouth opening and closing like a guppy fish, his eyes wide. His expression changes from shocked surprise to anger in an instant.
“KATE!” he yells. I smooth out my pink dress, I would say that matches the apartment, but nothing matches, and I walk from my spot with a nonchalance that I don't feel, my heart pounding in my chest.
“Honey you're home!” I say sweetly. I place my hands on his shoulders, reach up and place a kiss on his cheek. “You seem tense dear, stressful week?” I ask. The look of bewildered rage almost has me laughing, but I bite my inner cheek to stop myself.
“What the hell did you do to my apartment?!” he asks, barely holding back his rage. I see him clench and unclench his fists out of the corner of my eye.
“Our apartment dear.” I correct him. “And I thought it needed a feminine touch, you aren't a bachelor anymore after all.” I continue. His eyes are so wide he looks like a cartoon character.
“Feminine touch?!” he says bewildered. His mouth opens and closes again, his eyes still wide. “Feminine touch?!? It looks like a unicorn threw up in here!” he exclaims. I smile and throw my arms around his neck, trying my hardest to stay composed.
“I knew you'd get my design inspiration!” I say excitedly. He growls and pushes me off him, not with force, even though I can feel his fury.
“This isn't funny Kate.” He scowls. He grits his teeth and a wipe the smile off my face, glaring at him.
“It isn't funny, that you won't sign an annulment.” I tell him. He steps towards me.
“This...” he says as he waves his arm around the room. “Is taking it too far.” He growls. I raise my chin, not backing away from him, raising my voice even louder to match his.
“Then sign the damn annulment!” I say, stomping my foot. He steps closer, bending down slightly, our faces almost touching, you can feel the angry tension between us.
“You are so damn stubborn!” he growls.
“And you're an ass!!” I counter. I'm not sure who acted first, or if it was a case of spontaneous combustion. I'm thinking the latter. Our lips crash together, our hands gripping roughly to each other. The kiss is full of anger, fuelled by desire and the mounting sexual tension between us. I rip his shirt open, sending buttons flying through the apartment. His belt buckle and button are undone and his pants and boxers pushed off his hips.
Chase rips my underwear off me, before wrapping his arms behind my knees, lifting me up and smashing me against the wall. He pulls my legs apart and thrusts straight into me.
“Chase!” I yell out in shock. There's no foreplay, there's no need for any, and the past four weeks has been one serious long session of foreplay. He thrusts hard into me, his large thick cock hitting a spot no one had ever reached before. I grip and scratch at his back as he bites down on my neck and shoulders. His thrusts are relentless and I'm loving it. It doesn't take long before I'm screaming his name in my angry ecstasy and he's spilling his seed inside of me. We are breathless when he leans his forehead against my shoulder, his chest heaving with every breath he takes. He gently lowers me to the ground, a stark contrast to the angry mind blowing fuck I'd just received. We stare at each other, chests still heaving, and his blue irises almost black. I'm getting lost in them when my phone ringing pulls me from my daze. Instantly, in my gut, I know who it is and I rush away from Chase.
Grabbing my phone I run to my room and slam the door, looking at Liam's name flashing on the screen. Guilt floods my system as I slump back against the door, not moving to answer the call.
“What have I done?” I whisper.