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Ryan’s POV
A few days later

Charlotte claims to have found the perfect house for us and sets an appointment after work for me to visit. Ella still doesn’t know about my side project and I’m hopeful finding a place soon would cheer her up, she desperately needs it. Not to mention we decided to keep up with her treatment, the next try is tomorrow. I want to be confident but the anger radiating through her daily is starting to really affect me. I hate seeing her like this. The way she goes into raging fits at the gym is disturbing to watch. Her small frame is always trembling and she doesn’t stop until her legs give out on her. I thought she’d be able to let out all that was brewing inside of her with only just a few intensive sessions but the animosity takes over every single time she puts on the gloves. Niall and I suggested for her to focus on weight training for a while in hopes to stop her tantrums but she refused. Outside of the gym, she’s all over the place, we have tender moments where she’s happy, and then she’s throwing things at the wall. I want to do everything that is required for her treatment to work but I’m desperate for my love to feel better. It’s not only about the sex, we’re back to avoiding being naked around each other. There have been times when I walked on her showering, and it killed me not being able to touch her. Above my sexual needs, I just want my wife to be happy. I want her to go at least one day without any dark clouds raining on her. She’s mentally exhausted I can tell. I need my Ella.

“Hey, Ryan!” Charlotte gives me a small smile. I hadn’t seen her since Ella told her to back off and I can tell she’s keeping her distance right now. The visit is quick, the house is better than the others but still not exactly what I want for us. Charlotte says she’ll keep looking and will text me as soon as she finds something.

It’s dark outside when I climb into the SUV with Cooper. “How about we go for a game of pool?” I ask him. “Trying to avoid going home? She was particularly aggressive during her training today, huh?” Cooper asks. “That obvious? I feel bad but I need to clear my mind if I want to be able to help with whatever she’s going through at the moment,” I sigh looking at a text from Ella asking when I’ll be back to know when she should heat up my dinner. Cooper agrees to go and I text back informing her of my plans. “Don’t be upset,” I silently pray, waiting for the reply. The message tells us to have fun, I’m relieved. I knew she wouldn’t deny me time with a friend but I also didn’t want her to feel neglected.

Cooper and I went to the same place I always go to with my friends which happens to be where Ella and I had fun on my birthday. Part of me regrets coming here remembering what a great time we had that night. The memory compared to how things are going right now rips my heart apart. Halfway through our game, my eyes wander around seeing drinks everywhere. I break into sweats, my throat feels dry, the craving is there. I can’t stop looking at a bottle that’s sitting on a table nearby. Cooper and I have been drinking water since we got here. “Ryan!” he calls my name. Breaking eye contact with the bottle, I turn to him. “Are you okay, man?” he walks closer. “Yeah, sorry, I just… uhh… moment of weakness I guess,” I lean against the table. I’m usually fine being in places like these but maybe the stress from what’s going on at home is getting to me. “I know you’re trying to be strong for Ella but if you need help through this, I’m here. You’re my boss but I care about you, both of you, and you can count on me,” he puts a hand on my shoulder. “Thanks, man. I appreciate it. Truly,” I smile. We go back to our game. The fact that he beats me doesn’t take away the joy I’m feeling after a while.

I find my wife doing homework in the guestroom. Her hair is in a messy bun, she’s in her PJs looking adorable. “Who won?” she turns her head to me. “Coop! Ugh,” My lips flip upside down. “Coop? You guys are really close now, huh?” She giggles. “We are. I missed you, you’re beautiful,” I wrap my arms around her shoulders from behind. “I missed you more,” she leans into my embrace. I’m glad to see her in a good mood. Her phone interrupts the nice moment. “It’s Emma. Weird of her to call me at this time,” she picks up. I can hear Emma crying into the phone, she’s talking about Trevor being at the hospital after a car accident. My kind wife offers to fly home to be there for her. Plans are made in a hurry, the flight is booked within minutes.

“You don’t mind me going right?” a worried frown rests on her face. “Of course not! You know I would go with you if I weren’t filming. You’ll have to keep me updated and tell them I’m sending positive vibes,” I reassure her. Part of me does worry how it’ll affect her though. Another stress factor coming at her. Emma and Maddy flew to California when she had her accident I do understand why she’s going. Emma being pregnant has to be careful as well and I’m sure having Ella with her will be helpful.

She’s almost done packing when she turns to me with another worried look on her face. “Babe?” I walk closer, rubbing her back. “I won’t be here tomorrow, we were supposed to try and... I’m sorry I know we said we would continue the treatment but…” her small voice fades out. “It’s fine, don’t worry about it. Your friend needs you,” I say. She bursts into tears. Sometimes the tears are worse than her raging fits, both make me feel helpless but the sadness always lasts longer. Her knuckles turn white from her grip on my shirt.

By the time, she’s done with her suitcase, she only has a few hours left before having to head to the airport with Max. I won’t be able to take her there having to be on set bright and early. She insists we go to bed even if we only have a short time left. We lay together, her sweet vanilla scent around me. Bittersweet thoughts run through my head, I feel sorry for Trevor but part of me is appeased we’re skipping our next try. Thinking about it had me stressed out. I couldn’t help picturing her going for my pleasure only or worse, breaking down from being unable to get in the mood. I’m starting to come to the realization that her going through all this pain is not how I want to conceive our children. They should come from lovemaking, not hardships. I have to find a way to tell her I would be okay not having kids to protect her and our relationship. Not tonight though.
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