A Wife's Cry Chapter 36
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After fixing the collar of his polo, I responded, “No. There's no need. That's not even your responsibility. Besides, Gavin will pick me up at my condo.”
And then I heard him sigh so deeply, as if there's just so much in his chest.
“Do you really need that guy to be with you in Singapore? Bring another person with you instead. Your assistant.” He insisted.
I lifted my head up and said, “I can't bring Claire with me. Nobody will look after the shop. Besides, Gavin also wants to attend the trainings.”
I was stunned when he reached for my hands and wrapped them around his neck, and then bound his around my waist, “I want to attend, too.” He said.
I couldn't help but laugh slightly as I moved my eyes to a different direction. I couldn't look at him straight when I knew he was looking at me intensely. Then I said, “You don't need to attend that. You already know those things. Besides, you have your responsibilities here. You can't just leave.”
“Yes, I can.”
“I wanna come with you.”
I stared at him for a while, and then I removed my arms from his neck. I brushed his messy hair with my fingers and noticed that his bangs have really grown longer than before – they almost covered his eyes.
“I told you there's no need.” I said straight.
I heard him 'tsk' and then the expression on his face changed like he's down in the dumps. He released me from his hold, and then he muttered, “Don't bring that Gavin with you.” He kept insisting as he rolled his eyes upwards.
“You can't tell me what to do, Allen. He will come with me.” I was starting to feel irate with his authoritative self. He was acting like we're still together and he wanted me to listen to his orders. God, I hate that feeling!
“And you will be staying in the same hotel?” He asked.
I breathed in deeply and answered, “Yes. Is there a problem with that?”
I sneered, “Of course not. Wait, why are you asking me about those things? You're acting like my husband with your interrogation.” I said, and then rolled my eyes on him as I took a step backward.
He wrinkled his forehead, and then stressed out, “Yes, I'm your husband.”
I raised an eyebrow on him, “You seem to have forgotten something, Allen.” I reminded.
He looked in another direction and said, “No, I don't.”
“So…” He paused for a while like he didn't know how to proceed with what he was going to say.
“How’s the annulment thing going?”
There - the reason he couldn't ask me right away – t'was about the annulment. I sighed before I could respond, “I haven't filed the petition yet because I still have a lot of things to attend to. Maybe after I come back from Singapore. Why, are you so excited about it? Do you want me to rush on it?”
I stepped farther from him after I saw him staring at me fiercely. He seemed annoyed to what I just said. I didn't mean to offend him, though; I just answered his question. How was that supposed to upset him then?
He didn't say a word after that, and so I just tried to fix the sleeves of his polo. To my surprise, he suddenly asked, “Why are you still acting cold, Van?”
“Huh?” I asked as I peeked on his face while he was looking in another direction. He was murmuring something I couldn't understand. He didn't repeat what he said, though, and just shook his head. His face showed plain despair, too.
“Where’s your coat and tie by the way?” I asked to break the silence, and then he pointed onto his bed where his clothes were. Then, I walked toward them and picked them up.
As I walked back near him, his eyes were locked on me, “Do I really have to wear those?” He asked.
I wrinkled my forehead in confusion, “Why, don't you want to?”
I could only laugh at his response, like he was already sweating hard without the coat and neck tie yet. Well, I don't find it hot, though. I even think it's cold… Or maybe it's just my clothes, eh?
“Come on, wear it. Your parents would appreciate it.” I advised.
I honestly thought he had to wear those because the guests were in formal attire. The son of the celebrants should be in formal, too, I believe.
“Have they seen you already?” He asked as I put the neck tie on him.
“Not yet. I haven't seen them earlier.”
Then, he pushed my hair to behind my ear. Why? I can't help but think my hair was already a mess. I curled it a bit earlier, though; maybe it had gone brassy already.
“I’ll accompany you. Greet them.” He said.
I finished fixing his tie first, and then looked in another direction, “I-I'm shy.”
Well, it's true! It felt awkward. Their son and I have been separated for years and I'm here in their anniversary party. I haven't even seen them since Allen and I paved ways.
“Don’t be. It’s okay. They will be happy to see you. They’ve been expecting you to come, actually.” He said as he continued playing with my hair.
It beats me, but I think he was enjoying doing so even if I had it cut shorter already. So I asked, “Is it already a mess?”
He smiled, “No. It's just… Cute and short.”
Short? It's shoulder length, though.
“Is it ugly?”
He shook his head in response and said, “It suits you.”
I gave him a smile, and then pointed to his polo and said, “Okay, tuck that in now. Don’t tell me you would still have me to do that?”
I didn't mean to be fierce, though; but his reaction just seemed naughty, like he had something different in mind.
“It's fine with me if you wanna do it.” He stated in a voice that sounded to be tempting.
What?! I rolled my eyes on him. I knew it! That smile meant something! What, does he think the odds are on his favor tonight? So I teased, “Are you drunk?”
“Not yet.” He replied.
“Well you seem so. You're muttering so many things.”
“Why, Vanessa? It's only you who does this for me since before, right?”
“That was before, Allen. Don't you forget… Everything has already changed. So stop it, because it's not funny.”
He didn't say a word and started tucking in his polo. Oh, look at this guy! He had the nerves to roll his eyes on me!
After which, I helped him wear his coat. Tsk. Dressing up has taken our time for so long. Maybe Leila and the others are already looking for us at the party.
“Have you had dinner already?” Allen suddenly asked.
“Uhh, not yet. But it's okay, I'm not really hungry.” I said as I buttoned his coat. He turned his back then, and went straight to the door.
Oh, look at him. I'm not yet even done buttoning up his coat!
He opened it wide and invited, “Come on, let’s eat. I haven't eaten yet, too.”
I reached for my bag on the bed, and then went outside his room before I responded, “And why haven't you eaten yet?”
“Because I'm waiting for you.”
I shifted my gaze toward him as we walked downstairs, “Waiting for me? What if I didn't come? Then you'd die for hunger.”
He didn't say a word. Maybe he was thinking that I was starting another fight with him. It's not that, though; I just think that he shouldn't be dependent on me. He should continue doing things even if I'm not around.
“So what have you had? Alcohol?” I teased, but he only rolled his eyes on me.
“I told you I was waiting for you.” He whispered, but I heard him clearly.
“I didn't tell you to wait for me. The last time we talked, I said I wasn't sure if I could come right?” I reminded, but he didn't react. I thought he would be mumbling something again, but he didn't.
We were just quiet until we reached the outside of their house. There were still a lot of guests, like nobody has gone home yet. I was surprised when Allen suddenly held my hand as we walked toward a table. It was too late when I realized we were heading to where his parents were.
Sh*t! I'm suddenly a bundle of nerves! I was supposed to pull my hand from his hold, but he won't let me. He even pulled me on the waist closer to him and then whispered onto my ear, “Relax, Van. It’s okay.”
And I just obeyed him. I closed my eyes hard for a second and breathed in deeply. Then, I noticed his Mom stand up, and then his Dad. They both gave me a sweet smile.
I kissed them on the cheeks and greeted, “H-happy anniversary!”
His Mom held me on the shoulders and with a smile on her face said, “It’s good to see you again, hija. We’re glad you’ve accepted our invitation.”
I smiled back at her and said, “I… I’m sorry, I’m late. I haven't seen the program.”
“It’s okay. At least you're already here. And oh, have you seen Ellie already? She’s been waiting for you.”
I looked at Allen for a moment.
“Not yet.” Allen answered for me.
It's a good thing that he knew I wasn't very confident speaking with them. More so, the other people on the same table were all eyes on me. Maybe they were puzzled why I was with Allen.
“We will just look for her later. Excuse us for now. Vanessa hasn't eaten yet.” Allen added.
I saw a very surprised look on her Mom's face that I could only bow down my head in embarrassment. Oh, Allen! Did he really need to mention that?
“Oh! Go, go ahead. Vanessa might be starving already. Get her some food, Allen.” Her Mom ordered, only indicating that she's so much concerned. I felt all the more disconcerted that they still treated me the same way. I was still welcome in the family.
I kissed them on the cheek and bid goodbye before we left their table. His Dad even told me to enjoy the rest of the night. I thought he wouldn't be speaking to me because he was quiet the whole time and was just giving me a bit of smiles.
As we walked, I told him, “W-wait, let's go find Leila first.”
He looked at me and asked, “Don't you wanna eat first?”
“Ugh, maybe later. Let's look for them first. Or are you hungry already?”
He shook his head in response and said, “No. No. I'm just worried about you.”
I turned around and pulled him on the elbow, “Okay. Come on.”
He didn't say a word anymore, and then we headed straight to Leila's table. As we came closer to them, I can't help but notice my cousin grinning. I also saw Marco whispering something to his wife.
“So, you happy?” Leila teased Allen as we arrived on their table, while Marco and his wife laughed. I peeked at Allen to see his reaction, but he only shifted his gaze to a different direction, so I failed to see how he responded.
“Earlier, your face looked so down, but now you're all smiles." Leila teased.
Oh, Leila. She really couldn't hold her mouth! I couldn't help myself but laugh either. Good thing, Allen could keep his cool despite my cousin's bantering.
“Did you two eat already?” Leila asked.
“Not yet. Just about to eat. We just went here first.” I replied.
“Oh. Go find something to eat then. Well, that man beside you didn't wanna eat earlier. He just had alcohol and nothing else. He said he'll be waiting for you. Maybe he wants you to feed him.”
And I laughed out loud. Marco and his wife were also laughing out hard. But I stopped immediately when I saw Allen looking at me fiercely. Then, he suddenly held me on the shoulders and said, “Excuse us. We'll be having dinner first.”
“Okay.” Marco answered.
After which, he didn't wait if Leila would be saying something else. He held me and we walked away from them right at that moment. Well, my cousin really is a tough woman at teasing. I can't blame Allen, though.
We sat in an empty table, and then after quite a while, the food that Allen requested was served. We exchanged stories as we ate. As usual, he talked about work. He ranted about many things, like he was already so exhausted of them. He even said that there's nobody taking care of him. I just kept quiet after he said that. I knew what he meant.
After we ate, he introduced me to some of their business partners and friends. I actually felt awkward as he told them I'm his wife. I chose to just let him do so and kept silent the whole time. I didn't want to embarrass him either. I just thanked him after, because at last, he let me meet their partners and friends, which he didn't do before.
When it was already midnight, I decided to go home already. Leila won't allow me, though, because we were at the peak of exchanging stories. Well, that lady was quite drunk, and so she was really talking a lot; not to mention that Allen's sister was also with us on the same table. She also had a lot of stories to tell.
But I really had to go home already because I still needed to attend to some papers I had to bring with me to Singapore. Allen invited me to just stay in their house overnight, though. He told me he will just drive me to my condo first thing in the morning, but I didn't agree. It felt uncomfortable for me. I also didn't want him to drive me home because he drank quite a lot of alcohol - it would be unsafe - but he was persistent.
I even told him I needed to drop by Rioscents to get my laptop - which was true. I was thinking about a lot of things earlier that I already forgot about bringing my laptop home. I was supposed to bring that with me for the trainings.
Even so, he still wanted to drive me home. "I want to make sure your safe", he said.
And now, we’re now on our way to Rioscents.
We used my car and he decided to just take the cab afterwards; but I don't think I'll allow that – something bad might happen to him. It's already late at night and the news have been all about taxi drivers taking advantage of their passengers. I think I might just let him stay in my condo. Besides, it's a Saturday tomorrow and he won't have to work.
We reached Rioscents in less than an hour. There wasn't any heavy traffic, too, because it was already midnight.
Allen helped me to get in the shop when I told him to just stay in the car because it won't take me long, but I was surprised to see him after me until I got into my office. Well, I couldn't do anything, though.
I turned the lights on, but not everything – just those near my desk. I wasn't planning on staying for long and I thought I had to save energy.
I placed my bag on my desk and turned my laptop on. While it was loading, I peeked at Allen who has just entered my office. He removed his necktie and opened the first two buttons of his polo.
“You feel hot? Do you want me to turn the aircon on?” I asked, and then shifted my eyes back to my laptop.
“No need. It won't take you long right?”
I nodded, “Yeah. Take a seat first.” And so he seated on the one-seater sofa.
I hurriedly fixed all of my stuff, and then after quite a while, I asked him, "I'm all good. Let's go?"
He was staring at the bottles of perfume displayed on my cabinet. I suddenly remembered that I placed one there, which I bought before in Paris. It would surely catch your attention because it's the only one in a box. It was all new! The others weren't in a box and were already half-empty as they were meant for testing purposes.
I went toward the cabinet to get that box, and then toward Allen to hand him the perfume, “Here, take this.”
He reached for it with a wrinkled forehead. I couldn't help but smile to his reaction, “I bought that when I was on a vacation in Paris. The scent was so good that I took it even if I couldn't even use it. It's for men, though.” I said.
His lips drew a sweet smile – it’s that different smile again. He opened the box and sprayed one on his pulse area.
“Does it smell good? Did you like it?” I asked with a tone of excitement.
He nodded, “Yes, of course. It’s from you. Thanks.”
It made me feel happy when I saw his face lit up, indicating that he liked the scent. Then, I stood up, “So… Let’s go?” I asked.
I was about to turn around and leave when he suddenly pulled me on the elbow. Unexpectedly, I slumped onto his lap. Shit!
I forcibly tried to stand up, but he didn't let me, “Stay here.” He said.
He placed the perfume on the floor, and then he wrapped his arms around my waist. He leaned his head onto my right shoulder and I closed my eyes hard. What is he doing again?
“Hey…” I called.
He didn't answer and I could only hear his breathing. I brushed his hair and asked, “A-are you okay? Are you feeling well? You drank quite a lot. I'll be the one to drive us home.”
He then embraced me tighter and sighed deeply twice, “Van… Are we okay? A-are you coming back to me now?”
I stopped brushing his hair with my fingers and bowed my head down. Here he goes again, opening up that topic. I could only sigh, “Allen, please. Let's not talk about it. I'm already happy with how we are now. No commitments. Besides, we're seeing each other, right? And we talk.”
“I want to know.” He lifted his face up, and then reached for my hand and kissed it. “I wanna know how you think about me now. I wanna know how you feel. A-are you still mad at me?”
I couldn't look at him straight, but I managed to answer, “I don't know. I'm not sure. I-I just like us this way.”
He held my chin and moved my face slightly upward to look at him, “I want you back, Van. Completely.”
And I saw full sincerity in his eyes. “You know I won't allow us to be this way forever. I want you back completely. L-let’s start all over again.”
I shifted my eyes to a different direction, “I don’t know, Allen. Don't push me to think about it now. Please.”
One thing's certain - I'm confused. I didn't even know how to answer him. I can sense sincerity from the way he asked me. I can even see it on his eyes and I can feel it from his heart. I appreciate all his efforts and I could feel his love.
But I couldn't help but feel scared of what this could cost us. What if I just got caught by his sweet gestures? I don't want to decide and commit right away. This is not playing hard to get, but I just want to be sure and safe. I don't think I could handle the pain and stress of being in a relationship once again. So in any case, I want to avoid things that could inflict pain on me.
“So… Are you still going to push through with the annulment?”
I looked at him after he asked. I noticed that the joy in his eyes vanished just like that. The smile on his lips also just faded away in a snap.
I could only bow down my head and respond, “Maybe? I-I don't know. Just let me be, Allen. I'm really confused… And scared.”
“I can’t blame you for feeling this way. It's all my fault. But I'm hoping that you could give me a chance to make you happy this time, Van.”
And I was left speechless. I was only left staring at him.
He then gave me a bittersweet smile. Maybe he realized he couldn't get anything from me at that time, so he just leaned on the chair while I almost laid on his chest.
“It's okay if you couldn't give me an answer now. But let me tell this to you, Van… I will wait. I will still wait. Until you're ready to trust me again.” And then he kissed me hard on the forehead.
His kiss made me shut my eyes hard. That was just a simple one, but why did it give me so much feels?
Just after a while, he freed my cheek from all the strands of hair and kissed me there. His lips were warm, as well as his breath. Maybe it was all the alcohol from the party. Then, one of his hands moved up to my nape. I gasped when he touched my cheek and suddenly kissed me on the lips. God! I avoided him immediately after.
I stood up from his lap right at that instant and tried to make things casual. I even tried fixing the bottom part of my dress. I needed to do this to refrain certain things from happening. I'm afraid I might not be able to say 'No' this time.
When I looked at him, I saw a very confused expression, like there was a big question mark in front of him.
“U-uhm, come on. Drive me home.”
Trying to act as normal as I could, I turned around and walked to my desk to get my bag and my laptop. I can feel him following me, though.
I was about to reach for my bag, but he stopped me, “Later, Van. Let's stay here for a while.”
He strained me on the side of my table. I can't move! I could only shut my eyes hard and bite my lip. Shit! I could feel his sex from my rear! I know he's doing this intentionally!
“A-allen… Let's go home.”
He seemed to have heard nothing that he even pulled the hair on my nape upward and said, “I missed you so much, Vanessa. So much…”
He trailed kissed there that I could only hold onto my bag so tightly.
Oh, God! That feeling! That very familiar feeling that only him could give me! I can feel goosebumps all over my body and I also turned into a bundle of nerves. He moved his lips to the side of my neck and planted love bites there. Damn this! Allen!
He seemed to have no plans of stopping; not to mention that he's drunk. Then, he pushed his sex harder against my butt cheek.
One of his arms was already wrapped around my waist - indicating that I couldn't escape him anymore. His other hand was wandering around my body. He gripped and squeezed my waist, before he moved to stroke my thigh. I gasped, especially when his kisses moved down my shoulders! I can smell the scent of alcohol that's left on my skin.
I held onto my bag tighter when his hand slid into the inside of my dress. “Allen…”
I shut my eyes hard. It felt like this was the first time he did this to me. He was kissing me while stroking my thigh. Ugh, he could really slide his hand into my undies!
“V-van… I want you…” He murmured in between his aggressive kisses, and then he pulled me closer to him.
My heart was throbbing so fast and hard. Was it because of his sensual way of saying he wanted me? Or was it because of his kisses on my neck? And now he’s already kissing the back of my ear!
I'm near to losing control of myself. My cheeks are now feeling numb.
Shit! His finger slid into the side of my underwear. Now he's touched me! Ugh! I have now lost myself. I reached for the back of his head to get support. What he was doing made me lift my head up and pull his hair hard. I thought he was going to stop, but no! His warm fingers already reached my wet spot, and then he started rubbing it!
“G-god… Allen!” I screamed while panting heavily, and then he suddenly stopped from what he was doing. I could feel his heavy, ragged breathing against my neck.
“Just tell me if you want me to stop.”
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