The following day, I woke up and balled up in the middle of the king-sized bed. And I didn’t want any women to go through the same empty feeling I went through this morning. I wish to have a cliché morning, waking up in the warmth of Carlton or even waking up through the reassurance of knowing someone is there for me. His touch; thinking about it I know nothing could harm me.
Now, my companion was the view of Central Park with a bowl of pasta. Alone, regardless yet it was still comforting. I slouched in the couch, enjoying the view while my mind been drifted away to a different planet. The more I thought about Carlton and the way he acting, it sorts of stressing. I sighed heavily and stood up from the couch to make myself a coffee.
As I made my way towards the kitchen, I heard footsteps. Carlton was back after successfully avoided me since last night. I was debating internally if I should talk to him. “Carlton” I called him out. He was sitting at the leather couch when I walked out from the kitchen.
“Where have you been since last night?” I asked.
“Work. I had meetings this morning.” He replied, not meeting my eyes.
“Are you avoiding me?” I asked because I had enough troubles sharing my emotions and putting me in despair. Carlton didn’t even bother to answer my question and just kept his head down. I was going to be sick of this silent treatment and my face was burning.
“No, I’m not. I was just busy and I’m sorry for last night. I got carried away.” He muttered. I couldn’t exactly understand but utterly shocked with his words. “You’re what? Sorry? Why are you even apologizing, Carlton?”
Carlton heaved a sigh and before he could say something, I interrupted him, “Giana. It’s because of her right? You’re still in love with your ex.”
“This has nothing to do with her Adele!” he snapped back at me.
“Then? Why are you apologizing? So, I was right, you were avoiding me this whole day?”
“Adele, look. I didn’t mean it.” He replied while nearing his steps towards me. “Are you regretting for kissing me, Carlton? It’s a mistake, right? Kissing me was a mistake that you regretting.” His upper eyelids raised to make his eyes to open even wider. “Adele, no. Of course not. What are you talking about?” He reached my hand but I snatched it away from his touch.
“People apologize when they make mistake, Carlton!” I fired back. My voice filled the whole room and my eyes were filled with unshed tears. We just stood there, staring at each other in the middle of the room.
Carlton looked significantly fuming but I was still glaring away at him. He was about to speak but the doorbell rang letting the conversating in hung. He lifted his stern gaze from me and went to answer the door. Surprisingly, I heard a voice which made my anger to reach the peak. I huffed out and saw both Giana and Carlton standing with a file in her hand.
“Maybe, you can come to my room, we can solve this right away.” Did she just asked him to follow her back to her room? What the actual fuck was that? But something else caught my attention when I neared the door. I took a closer look of Giana and her dress.
“Wow, is it your payday?” My voice startled them. Carlton raised an eyebrow, probably wondering what I meant. “I mean, look at you. You’re wearing a decent outfit for the very time also with an enough cloth to cover yourself. So, I thought maybe you finally have enough money to-,”
“Adele!” Carlton’s serious tone interrupted my words. Such a protective ex-boyfriend! I didn’t bother his murderous look, “Ms Giana, I would like to remind you that once he’s back from meetings or anything, no business also after that. You want to talk business, wait until the next day. Now leave.”
“No, we have-.”
“Giana, I’ll see you tomorrow morning.” Carlton spoke and closed back the door. I waited for him to say something instead he was just staring back at me. I could read his expression; it was as if he trying to understand me because every time, he builds up an image about me, I was just acting completely different.
“That was rude, Adele.” He spoke again. Uh-huh, of course I was the one rude. But that was true too. I never acted this way before, to anyone. What gotten into me? My emotions seem to be getting the best of me especially when it was about Carlton which was fucking insane.
I wasn’t anything closer to ‘possessive lunatic wife’ but here witnessing the way I was acting when anyone got closer to him, that was different level of insanity as well. “Yes, I’m rude.” I replied with half smile and walked out from there.
I gently pushed open the room door and stepped into the suite. The kitchen light was on, I peeked into it and saw Carlton setting up the table. He lifted his eyes toward me and a smile pasted on his face, “Adele.” He greeted awkwardly.
I turned around from there but he stopped me by my wrist, “Please, don’t do this. Let’s talk.” I watched him again with crossed arms, waited for him to do his talking. With a small breath, he slowly brought me to the couch and made me to sit. “Adele, I’m sorry for everything but just know I will never regret for anything that concerns you and also for kissing you.”
My eyes soften with his words. “Lately, a lot been running in my mind. And you know right I’m signing deals with important clients.” He continued.
“About Giana, she’s nothing but my assistant. Trust me.” He took my hand with his and brought it to his lips. I shuddered with the contact. I nodded, slowly. “Ask her to dress up properly after this.” I said with a pouty face and amusement flashed across his eyes.
“What am I going to do with you, Adele?” A rough chuckle escaped from his lips.
I smiled coyly and sat closer to him as he was staring at me intently, predicting what I might be doing. “We can do this, husband.”
His amused eyes wide open when my hand wrapped around the nape of his neck and pulled him down for a kiss as I laid down on the couch. Both of us breath hardily once the kiss broken. His eyes glimmered at me and one of his hand tucked a strand of my hair behind my ear. “I have something better, wife.” He murmured huskily against my mouth.
His lips went up to my jawline and I was shivering under his touch. Then he slowly kissed my neck that made me arched my neck up and gave him an access. I knew I wasn’t thinking straight but still responding to his touch. I moaned lightly when his kisses moved to my collarbone.
My phone suddenly rang caused us to jolt up. It was Rheala!
I glanced up at Carlton and back to the phone before answering the call. I should answer the call, especially knowing her condition right now. “Adele!!” Her voice was tensed which gave me a panic moment too.
“Rhea, you okay?” I asked her.
“Adele, I’m craving for cheesecake.” She replied with a half cry tone. Carlton heard it and chuckled softly.
“Rheal, what the fuck? I thought you’re in pain or something. God!”
“This is important too. When are you coming back?” I saw Carlton walking back to the kitchen. My eyes kept looking at Carlton and the moment we shared together. “Adele” Rhea called me out from the other line. “Yes Rhea. Yes um... we will be back the day after tomorrow.”
“That’s too late. What are you doing there anyway? Can’t you come back earlier?” As I was listening to her, my eyes roamed all over him and inhaled deeply. If continue to ogle him, that will be the end of me. I stood up from the couch and went to the bedroom.
“I can’t Rhea and you know that. Did you go to the café?” I replied her as rested on the bed. We were talking for a while until I didn’t realise that Carlton took his bath and walked out with his sweatpants. The water droplets were glistening on his body and my eyes ran over his chest. I sighed a little and gulped with the view of his wonderful body.
“Ele, are you even listening?” Rhea yelled from the other line and a smirk formed on his face when I quickly averted my gaze from him and cleared my throat. “Yes Rhea. I am listening.” He slowly made his way to the bed and I was panicking especially after saw the mischievous smile. My body was glued to the bed but when I managed to escape, he grabbed my wrist and pinned to the side. The phone fell to the side and I heard Rhea was still talking.
God, save the poor child!
His scent was intoxicating. He whispered in my ear, “Let’s continue, wife.” I shook my head as no but he didn’t bother it, at all. A louder moan escaped from me when he bit my neck harder than before. “Ele, what the fuck was that?” Rhea shouted.
With all of the strength left in my body, I pushed him to the side and checked the phone. Luckily, Rhea ended the call. “Shit, Carlton. You’re impossible.” I glared at him who was lying on the bed, grinning at me. “You asked for it, wife.” He winked.
I blushed when his eyes pierced into mine. I looked away before he could see my cheek that was turning into a tomato. “I need a bath.”
“Do you need help?” He replied casually and earned a scowl from me.
My clock read 3.30am when I woke up in the middle of my sleep. The bed was empty as usual. I wondered what he was doing by staying awake at such hour. I hung around my nightwear’s satin robe and stepped out from the bedroom. I immediately caught a sight of him and looked over at the study desk. He leaned his head against the chair and stretched himself tiredly.
I watched him from distance and neared him from behind. His eyes were closed but gently opened when I touched his head and massaged it. “You should sleep, Carlton.” He looked up at me with his dreamy eyes as I was towering him from back.
While everyone looked nerdy with glasses but he looked way sexier. He took my hand and slowly brought me to the front. “Forget about me. You should sleep, Adele.” I refused as I shook my head.
“Why is my wife so stubborn?” As he said that, he pulled me onto his lap and I gasped with our position. One of his hand stroked my cheek and the other one wrapped around my waist. I love when he emphasized the word ’my wife’. I felt so helpless and blushed instantly, “God, you’re blushing.” He teased.
“Carlton, stop it.” I playfully slapped his arms.
“Come, you should sleep.” He said softly as he touched my hair slowly. “No. Can you say something else instead of ‘you should sleep’, ‘you should eat’ and blah blah.” I whimpered while my hand went around his neck and buried my face into the crook his neck.
I heard soft chuckle and he stroked my hair, “Adele”
I hummed as response to him. “Do you have concealer?” I sat straight and looked up at him with a questioning look. “Yes, why?”
“Nothing. Just thought you probably need it.” He said it casually.
I was still curious with his question especially after seeing his teasing smile on his handsome flawless face. “Are you sure?”
“Yes. Let’s put you to sleep.” I followed him reluctantly then he stopped his pace and turned at me, “Do you want to eat something?” I shook my head. “But I have a question for you.” I continued slowly and stopped walking.
His steps halted too and turned to face me. We were still holding our hands and stared at each other. “Why you’re not taking any second glance at me?” That was quick one from me and instantly held my head down. He tilted my face up, made me to look at him, “I’m afraid of falling harder for you than I’m supposed to.”
I stunned with his reply. What he meant? Did he really mean his words? Is he aware of his words? A spark charged through the space between us. “Carlton, I-,”
“Forget what I said. Come, sleep.” He closed the topic and I didn’t want to insist him any longer. Maybe I should wait for a right time and open the topic again.
I splashed water on my face and felt good until I saw the-, "What the fuck, Carlton Wilbert?" I stormed out from the bathroom and found him stopping himself from laughing.
"Is this why you asked for concealer?" I threw the towel on his face that he managed to catch it.
"It wasn't that obvious. Come closer, let me see." He teased as he pulled me closer. Then softly traced the marks, "Think of me often whenever you see this." He said huskily and placed a kiss on my neck.
I decided to go for a walk around the hotel and went for spa while Carlton attended meeting. Days with him at New York was nothing but blissful though we had arguments.
I never thought I would show my vulnerability towards him. And I remembered the way we kissed yesterday. It was dangerously nice and I was horrified with the thought.
God, I was losing my mind with all these lately.
It was about lunch time when I returned to the suite. He was nowhere to be found in the room and I supposed he must be having lunch with his clients. I wonder how had the energy to work all day long without a proper rest.
After a while, the door opened and revealed the sight of Carlton. He looked tired and completely lost. I quickly made him something to drink and passed to him. He looked up at me and took it slowly from my hand.
"I told you to rest. Look at you." My fingers brushed his hair off his forehead while his eyes squeezed shut.
"What is it Carlton? Is everything alright?" I was concerned with his state. He looked disturbed, as if something keep haunting him. I wish I could light down his burden.
But at the same time I was questioning myself. Why are you caring about him?
I took a seat next to him and gently touched his arms. He sighed sharply and looked at me. My brows knotted together. His eyes. It looked nothing like before. "Adele"
"We should stop this."
I tried to register his words but failed. A questioning look appeared on my face as I raised my eyebrows. "I can't do this. Let's stay as how we were before." He completed his words.
My heart sunk. I changed my siting position and rested my arms on the knees. I remained stationary for a moment before my head slowly turned at him.
"What you mean Carlton?" I asked with a shaky voice.
"I mean we should be as how we were all this while. Let's forget whatever happened. We don't have feelings for each other and this marriage is meaningless since day one. So yeah. Forget everything."
I sat there, sucked in breath. Speechless. I couldn't find for any words. He was right. It was meaningless since day one but; God! My heart contracted. No, I can't let it happen again.
"Say something, Adele."
Oh, you want to hear now! But there was nothing left for me to say especially after you made your mind. I was dumb for getting distracted. I wiped away the stubborn tear that betrayed me before he could notice it.
Fuck, I shouldn't be crying. I don't love him. I love only that one person, Harriet. He owning my heart. I reminded myself but something was whispering that I was sabotaging myself.
I didn't spoke anything even when he insisted. "We're leaving in awhile. I cleared my schedule earlier." I ignored his words. Since he wanted things to be as before, then that was it.
Helplessly, I packed my luggage and tried to shut off my mind. It was too loud than anything else. When we were leaving to the airport, the journey filled with an unexplainable silence and it was totally tormenting me.
I thought we were progressing but he put a big full stop for everything we had together. But why? He was already in distant with me which I managed to break it off. I was fighting with my tears when settled in the airplane.
Once a while, Carlton will throw a concerned look at me but I'll cover my head with the blanket. Not wanting him to see me, of course.
Giana? I didn't know where the hell she went and her absence or presence didn't bother me at all. I was completely lost in my thought while Carlton lost himself a deep sleep.
I felt way better when we reached home. Nothing could ease you like the way returning back to your own place. Then I remembered for last few weeks even after the parents left, I was still sharing the same room with Carlton.
We were back to square one, right? I mentally made a note and called out for Tantiana. "Shift all my stuffs back to my room."
Carlton looked all aware of my behavior but didn't respond anything.
Of course he won't since he suggested this.
"But ma'am.." her words trailed.
"Just do what I say, Tantiana" I snapped at her and she nodded and shifted her eyes toward Carlton. He was in calm and composed manner while hiding everything he was feeling inside him.
I wish I can be like him too, sometimes.
"Don't do it Tantiana." My head spun around at him. His two hands were shoved in his pocket as he was ordering to Tantiana.
That poor lady confused with us. "Do it, Tantiana!" I stated. She caught in between us and had hard time.
"I'm paying her." Carlton stated. I pursed my lips and chuckled joylessly. "Fine, I'll do it by myself." I crossed my arms with that reply.
"Tantiana, lock the room and pass the key to me. Right away!" His stern gaze and voice made Tantiana to obey him at an instant.
"You can't do this!" I stomped my feet.
"Oh I can. My house, my rules." He replied with a reckless expression on his face and took the key from Tantiana. He shook the key in the air and when I wanted it back, he pulled away and kept it in his pocket.
"Better luck, next time wife!"