Chapter 1 ~ Intrude
He opened the box, watching as the diamond glittered in the sun’s rays. His heart pounded. He had no idea how she would take this. But he knew he had to at least try. This was the only woman whom he had ever really loved with his heart, whom he could ever really say he was IN LOVE WITH. The only woman he could really ever see himself call wife. Everyone called him a fool, but he didn’t really feel like one. He just felt stupid because it had taken so long. He sighed, closed the box and stuffed it in his pocket. He couldn’t delay anymore, hell; he had already delayed these last 30 plus years. He walked up the pathway and lightly knocked on the door. After a few moments, he heard her unlock the door. She smiled and ushered him in. Her smile could melt his heart over and over again.
“Hi,” she whispered. His lips lifted up. Yes, right on every account.
* * * * * * * * * *
2 years ago…
He leaned against the bar, his fingers playing with the straw. Was what he did the right thing? Just because it had been a little over a year didn’t mean he had to really ask for her hand, did he? And right now, he knew he shouldn’t be second guessing himself. He loved her, he knew this.
“Yeah, I’m fine.” D took a sip of his drink and shook his head at Alex’s response.
“Whatever man. Who are you trying to fool?” Alex had to chuckle at that, for D was right. He couldn’t fool them anymore than he could fool himself.
“I asked Theresa to marry me.” D blinked a couple of times; not really understanding why that thought got Alex so down. “I know what you’re thinking.”
“So, than explain.”
“Part of me loves her.” D’s eyebrows shot up, just like Alex knew they would have. “I know, man, I know. I do love her. But I can’t help but feel that part of me only did it because it was the next step.” D’s hand landed on Alex’s shoulder.
“Let me give you piece of advice, since I’m now going through a divorce here. Marriage is not always the next step. And it’s really not something to enter into lightly. Believe me man; if you don’t love her with all your heart, the marriage will never work. And Theresa is not the one that believes in divorce.”
“I know D. I just…”
“Don’t want her to get away?” Alex smiled.
“Something like that.”
“Well, man, if you love her, then it’s a good start. How about we go kill some of those negative thoughts though?”
“What did you have in mind D?”
“Come on Alex, there’s tons of females. And Theresa knows you wouldn’t do anything.” Alex had to agree. If anything, Theresa was very understanding. She knew he was away on vacation, she agreed with her blessing. That also meant some partying, so long as it didn’t go past any boundaries, and he knew he could keep that promise.
He closed his door, making his way to his bed. He was tired, and he knew that Theresa would probably be calling, asking him how his night went. And he didn’t even mind if she did call, he just was drained. He flung his arm over his eyes, closing his eyes, knowing the vibration of the phone would wake him. And wake him it did, five hours later. He groaned, seeing the sun start to peek through the blinds. He reached for his phone, surprised to find that it was pushing 8 in the morning.
“Well, good morning sleepy pants.”
“Hey babe,” he responded and he could feel her frown. Well, he wasn’t a morning person, everyone knew that.
“I’m sorry sweetie. I didn’t mean to wake you. I just thought you’d be up by now, enjoying the sights, ya know.” He sighed. And he knew she heard it. Well, this wasn’t a good start to the day. “Oh, um…”
“Don’t. I’m sorry baby. I just, I don’t know what’s going on. I came into the room last night and crashed. I feel so drained.”
“Sweetie, you’ve been on the go for the last few years it seems, non stop things to do. Of course you’re drained. That’s why you need this time, alone, or with a couple of friends. No work, no nothing but having fun.” He smiled, knowing she couldn’t see it, but he was thankful he had her. She did understand him. One of the few females who did, it seemed.
“So, why didn’t you call last night?” He asked her, turning over, trying to block out the sun. She chuckled and he could see her shaking her head.
“Because I knew you were tired. And you were out partying the night away. So, I figured I’d play the nice person for a change and let you rest.”
“You’re way too good for me.”
“No, I just know you. Now, sweetie, get some rest. Call me if you get a moment.” He grabbed the other pillow and hugged it to him, wishing she was here. Or at least for the moment.
“Just a few more minutes. You know how I love talking to you.”
“Even in the early morning, you still like to lay on the charm.”
“You’re my baby. You would wonder what is up if I ever stopped.”
“Oh Alex, people would never understand the real you.” He heard her slight giggle and had to smile himself. “Listen, you make sure D doesn’t do anything stupid.”
“What makes you think he’s here?”
“Oh, because he’s divorced and you guys are almost attached to the hip.”
“Oh, someone thinks she has jokes, huh?”
“Baby, I know I got jokes. But, I really am going to let you go. And you can call me later. I’d hate to intrude on your fun.”
“You know I love talking to you, Theresa.”
“I know, but this was for you. For you to relax, that’s it.”
“Okay. Well, I’m gonna jump in the shower than I’ll call you later.”
“Okay. Have fun. Love you.”
“Love you too.” And with that, he ended the call, laying the phone back on the table by his bed. He actually felt better talking to her. He knew he was making the right choice. With that, he jumped off the bed and headed to the shower.
He leaned back against his chair, smirking at his friend’s antics.
“What are you smirking at?”
“D, it ain’t even finalized and you’re starring at all kinds of women.”
“God gave me eyes to see. Besides, I have seen you catch a glimpse at one or two.”
“Glance, not stare.” Alex shook his head, the smile still on his face. He took a sip of his drink before he rested his arms on the table.
“I’ll be damned, Alexander James!” Alex’s head quickly whipped around. No one called him that. His eyes popped open and his mouth dropped!