(Continued from last issue)
David and Diane have been married for years; then there is Julie, the young secretary whose axis collides with the couple’s in ways none of them saw coming.
I had not been as comfortable or relaxed as I was in the week since I fled to Kenneth’s place in a long time.
Kenneth’s shifts at the hospital changed from day to day, but whenever he was off, he found ways to spend quality time with Junior and me; sometimes we would stay in and we would cook, other times we would go to a small restaurant in his neighbourhood that had a children’s play area that Junior enjoyed mucking around in; whatever we did, he made an effort to include Junior, which I found very touching.
Another thing that I found particularly moving was that even though I was practically living in his place, he never pressurized me for sex.
Although the physical and sexual attraction between us was undeniable, and we had kissed and cuddled on his couch, we never crossed the line and Junior and I slept in the second bedroom.
I was not totally sure why he never pushed for more, but suspected it was because he did not want me to feel obliged to sleep with him simply because he was providing a roof over our heads. I appreciated his thoughtfulness, but ironically there was more than one night when I actually wanted him to go further.
I was comfortable with where we were, and although we had never used words like ‘couple’ or ‘item’ to describe what we were, it certainly felt – at least to me – like that is what we were becoming.
Being with Kenneth felt cozy, warm, and safe; tucked away in our small world, with no one knowing where I was, was like living in a fairy tale bubble – until David had to ruin it all by calling.
Julie’s cold, steely attitude over the phone irked me, but more than that, it surprised and confused me. For as long as I had known her, she had always been soft-spoken, meek and submissive; yet now, not only was she talking back to me, but she was doing so with a challenging, almost confrontational attitude that I had never seen in her before.
I suspected that she was with that doctor, and that he was probably the one responsible for this drastic change in her, and that only angered me further.
After all I had done for her, what gave her the right to think she could just blow me off like this; him? It was time to remind her who the boss in this relationship was.
“Julie, listen to me, and listen carefully. I know you’re not at your mother’s place, and I’m giving you thirty minutes to get back here, or you and I are going to have a problem.”
“You don’t own me, David!” she cried, but this time, the confidence was gone from her tone.
Her voice shook, and I knew that despite her false bravado, she knew I was still in charge.
“Thirty minutes, Julie, or I’ll drive to your mother’s place and ask her where her daughter and grandchild really are!”
This time, the panic in her voice was unmistakable.
“No! Okay, I’m coming, but it’s going to take me more than thirty minutes – the traffic is bad,” she answered, her tone almost pleading. I could now hear traces of the Julie I knew.
“Fine, I’ll wait,” I answered firmly and then hung up.
I had reestablished the balance of power, and was certain Julie would bend to my will the way she always had. Likely, she was probably already on her way to the apartment; so, all that was left for me to do, was wait.
I had been so focused on David over the past week, that I had not really had the time to think about anything but keeping him happy and contented.
Now, with the evening to myself, I let my mind wander to other areas of my life; business at the boutique was booming, though I was admittedly leaving the bulk of the work to Tracy.
Not that she was complaining; she enjoyed running the boutique and probably did not really need my help anyway. Besides that, she still felt I had crossed the line by bribing the lab assistant to forge the DNA results, and because that particular topic and her feelings about it were not up for discussion, there was a bit of an uncomfortable tension between us that I simply avoided by avoiding her.
I still valued our friendship and was hopeful that once the results came out and she saw how smoothly my plan ran, she would come round to my way of thinking and stop being so judgmental.
My mother often said a woman should protect her marriage and family like it were a pot of gold, because there would always be someone out there who wanted what she had, and although she and I disagreed on many things, that was not one of them.
As far as I was concerned, the end justified the means and I was totally justified in doing what I had done. I might have spent all week striving to do everything the ‘perfect wife’ is expected to do, but once those results came in, and David got rid of that gold digger and her bastard son, I would have succeeded in doing the one thing that mattered the most – I would have safeguarded not just my marriage, but my children’s position and future as well.
Source: The Observer