I sit back in my chair and feel my blood pressure rising. I was convinced Sam was over Jacob. I’ve secretly been monitoring her phone since I discovered the text messages between the two of them. When I hadn’t seen any new calls or texts, I assumed we were in the clear.
With cell phone in hand, I head out to the wet bar in the family room and pour myself a scotch on the rocks. I take a swig, letting the alcohol burn its way down my throat and settle into the pit of my stomach. The knot of tension that has taken over my body starts to loosen as I pace the room.
I freshen my drink and take a generous gulp before filling it again. My mind is tormenting me with the fact that Sam went out tonight. Little thoughts repeat over and over in my head, fucking with any rationality I might have possessed.
You aren’t what she wants.
You aren’t what she needs.
She doesn’t love you anymore.
You blew her off for months… what did you expect?
She is a stupid bitch who can’t be trusted.
You’re better off without her.
She has to pay for what she’s done.
You need to confront her.
Yes, that’s what I need to do. I need to call her out on all her lies. Her infidelity makes me want to hate her, to make her suffer as much as I am right now. I could never do to her what she has done to me and I’ve had plenty of opportunities to.
Just the thought of another man being intimate with her makes me want to hurt something. I can barely stand it when men look at her like they are picturing her naked. Knowing another man has touched her, tasted her, and fucked her could very well be my undoing. There aren’t a lot of things in life that can bring a man to his knees, but a betrayal of this magnitude very well could.
A few more glasses of scotch later, I find myself sitting in the dark waiting for Sam to return. The thoughts in my head have gotten stronger and angrier. My fury is reaching its boiling point and I know I’m about to erupt.
How did I not see what was happening right under my nose? They say love is blind. Well, I guess it really is. When you trust someone completely, you never expect them to knowingly rip your heart out and stomp all over it.
The sound of the garage door opening and closing breaks the silence. I take a deep breath, in a last minute attempt to calm myself. I can hear her moving through the kitchen, her heels clicking on the wood floors. Once I hear the muted sounds of her feet on the rug that covers the family room floor, I reach over and pull the chain of the lamp that sits next to me.
Sam lets out a blood curdling scream and visibly starts from my sneak attack. For a brief second I feel bad for scaring her. Then I remember what drove me to this point.
“Well, well… guess you decided to come home. Didn’t find what you were looking for?” I ask through clenched teeth.
“I told you I was going for a drive. What’s gotten into you? Why are you drunk?” She replies. The lies freely falling from her lips cause me to laugh mirthlessly. I can feel my lips curling in disgust.
“A drive? Is that what we’re calling it now? Funny, I thought it was called fucking around behind your husband’s back!” I sneer at her.
Now that the cat’s out of the bag, I watch as all the color drains from her face. But then she rallies and has the audacity to lie to my face.
“What are you talking about Aiden? I think maybe you should put the drink down.” Desperation laces her every word. It’s time to go in for the kill.
“I know exactly what I’m talking about. I saw the text messages between you and Jacob on your phone, Sam. I just didn’t say anything because of your grandfather’s funeral. I know you’ve been having an affair… I know!” I shout at her. I need her to feel as much pain as I’m feeling now. I want to know we are in this together, at least in that aspect. The fact that she’s visibly shaking gives me some small vindication.
“I’m sorry. I don’t know what to say.” I’m taken aback at how easily she admitted to her transgressions after the way she tried to lie just a few minutes ago, but only temporarily. The alcohol coursing through my veins is turning me into an angry monster, capable of saying just about anything right now.
“You’re sorry? You disgust me! How could you make love to me and tell me you love me when another man has been inside you?” I get up from my chair. I’m just too angry to sit when what I really want to do is hit something.
“I never meant for this to happen.” Her watery, brown eyes look up at me, showing all her sadness and regret. I feel myself getting sucked into them, wanting to believe everything she’s saying – how her depression and loneliness were because I was distant and cold.
When she tells me she turned to Jacob after Scott’s wedding, I snap. I was going to make love to her that night, but I fell asleep while she was taking her sweet ass time in the bathroom. I had stayed up until the wee hours of the morning working on a proposal for my boss and was exhausted by that point. “It has to be done before noon on Saturday, Aiden. If you don’t come through, I’ll be forced to start relying on someone else for these types of deals,” he said before leaving my office. While I was busting my ass and dealing with the stresses of my job, wanting to keep giving Sam a good life, she was thinking of him.
“That’s no excuse. If you felt unloved and wanted to change the circumstances you should have talked to me… not gone whoring around with some playboy Casanova,” I hiss at her.
“How could I talk to you when you ignored me most of the time? It was like we were roommates. You didn’t kiss me, didn’t hold me or touch me, nothing! I came home after being gone for two weeks and you didn’t even tell me you missed me. For all I knew you were having an affair too!” She screams at me.
An affair? Where does she get off accusing me of that? Maybe I distanced myself emotionally from her when she abruptly announced we were no longer going to try for kids, but I don’t think I’ve been intentionally holding back from her. The days have just passed by so quickly. I didn’t even realize how she might have misconstrued things.
“That is a low blow! I’ve never been anything but faithful to you. Things have been hectic at work and I’ve been stressed out.” I pace back and forth knowing that I have to admit that I played a part in our demise. “You know what? Fine, I take responsibility for my actions and how I may have been distant. But there is no reason why you couldn’t have talked to me about it.”
The tears that filled her eyes are now falling down her cheeks.
“Do you realize that you have stomped on my heart and broken my trust?” I can’t hide the sadness in my voice. She was my whole life and I don’t know if I can ever trust her again. Who’s to say she won’t do this the next time we hit a rough patch. I vaguely hear her tell me she was just trying to make herself happy. Does she really think this was the way to go about that?
“You’re never going to be happy, Sam. Not with me and certainly not with Jacob. Don’t you see that? You’re going to be miserable regardless of who you’re with. You can’t expect someone else to make you happy. After the way we’ve connected over these last few weeks, I had hoped you would let him go. I didn’t think you had spoken to him. I figured you were moving on, but you went to see him tonight, didn’t you? Why can’t you just let him go?”
When she shakes her head and wraps her arms protectively around herself, I find myself asking the one question I’m almost certain I don’t want the answer to. “Do you love him?”
The pain that I feel after seeing her nod makes me want to fall to my knees. I’m like the puppy that has just been kicked. It’s feels like a sucker punch to my solar plexus. I’m surprised I’m still breathing.
“Fuck! How could you do this to us?” I explode before hurling my now empty glass against the wall beside her head. When shards of glass fly everywhere, almost hitting her, I realize I need to get the hell out of here before I do something I will forever regret.
“I can’t look at you right now. I think one of us needs to leave until we can decide where to go from here. I’m more than willing to get a hotel room.” I offer, even though a hotel is the last place I want to go right now.
“No, no. This is my mess. I’ll go stay with Michelle. You do know I love you right? And I’m so unbelievably sorry for what’s happened. I’d take it all back if I could,” she says. All I see in her eyes is pity. I don’t need her pity. I need her damn love, her faithfulness, and to know that she has my back when things get tough.
“If that were the case, you wouldn’t have gone to see him tonight,” I reply before heading upstairs. I walk into the master bathroom and strip down before stepping into the shower stall, hoping that by the time I’m out, she’s gone. I lean against the tile wall and bow my head in defeat. Unfortunately, the hot water does little to soothe the ache in my chest.