***BONUS post no. 3***
Daniel was reading my manuscript and I was sitting next to him in bed. We were both done for the day, spent and tired. I got an email earlier on in the day from David, but I didn’t check it out until we were in bed.
“Anna,” he wrote, “take a week off.”
It was as simple as that.
I huffed a little humourless chuckle, a little embarrassed about my indecency and the drama it caused. This is such high school stuff and I’d thought I’d matured enough to be able to live in the real world. Where girls with boyfriends don’t let another man kiss her and touch her; where girls like Stella aren’t a threat and the work speaks for itself; where it was civil and honest and without a sense of petulance that was becoming me. I hated to realise that in the years since college I hadn’t grown as much as I’d thought. I believed that maybe, just maybe, I was becoming the type of person my father (and mother) was proud of.
“David said to take a week off,” I told Daniel. He didn’t say anything. I turned to see his eyes glazed over, stuck on the same page he opened on. “Daniel.”
“Mmm?” he snapped out of it and looked at me, smiling. “Yeah?”
I furrowed my brows. “You okay?”
He nodded. “Yeah.”
I shrugged. “I don’t know. You just don’t seem like you sometimes. Like, lately.”
He grinned wider, holding my hand in his. “Everything’s fine. Just stress at work, probably.”
Probably? “Well, I figured you would tell me something about my actions …”
I shrugged again. “I don’t know.” I chortled. “It’s just confusing to me. I don’t understand why you’re so chill about another man kissing me.”
He rolled his eyes. “It’s whatever.”
“You don’t care?”
“Of course I care,” he was quick to say. His voice only now beginning to soak with a little colour. “It’s just that I know you and I know me and what I did, so I understood that I deserved it.”
“Deserved it?” I was shocked. “Daniel, no one deserves that kind of behaviour from a significant other. This is isn’t a revenge thing.”
He sighed harshly. “Why do you have to fucking bring it up again? It happened, it’s done, just move on. Do you really want me to yell at you and make you cry and just put us both in a crappy state? You know, sometimes I just think you’re trying to infuriate me just to get a rise out of me or something. Great—” he pressed the heel of his hand against his temple— “now I got a fucking headache. Thanks.” He got up and entered the bathroom, presumably for a pain killer.
I didn’t want to fight with him, but I also didn’t want him to be so unreceptive and numb to the fact that I told him another freakin’ man touched me in a way that my boyfriend only should. Is it bad to want to talk about this and actually come to an understanding with Daniel? After therapy, we’d been so good at communicating and opening up to each other, but now I feared Daniel was going back to just not wanting to talk. Why is that his go-to defence mechanism?
He came back and, to avoid giving him another headache, I tried changing the subject. “How do you like my story?”
He smiled lazily and nodded. “It’s good. You need editing though.”
I smiled. “I know.”
“A little refinement in certain areas, but all in all, it’s good. I can see your idea and it’s one worth writing and reading about. I think a lot of people can relate to it.”
I held his hand, placing it on my lap. He reciprocated by stroking my inner thigh. I moved in closer. “You can edit it for me,” I suggested.
Daniel laughed. “Yeah, sure.”
“No, really. I trust your judgement.”
He shook his head. “I’m no editor or writer. That ship has been sacrificed for the greater good that is now dead.” I angled my brows down, looking up at him. “My mother,” he clarified.
I gulped, unsure of how he could speak so easily about his mother’s death. I’d be choking up; but then again, I guess different people process different things in different ways.
“So, I’m off work for a week,” I finally said.
He nodded. “Yeah. We can start moving in our stuff this week.”
“This week? I didn’t realise it was so soon.”
“I told you when we saw the apartment.”
I shook my head. “I don’t think so.”
“No? Oh. I thought I did. Well,” he shrugged, “it doesn’t make a difference. We’re still good to go. I’ll bring in the contract tomorrow. We’ll both sign it and boom, we have our own home together.” He leaned over to kiss me. “I can’t wait, babe.”
I smiled, still half-confused but eager for the immediate future ahead. “Me neither.”
***Sorry about all the BONUSES, I’m at a significant part of my story and I’ve stopped writing for some reason. Regardless, hope you’ve been enjoying the BONUSES. Soul***