“I really don’t understand why we have to go through this all the time!” I yelled, probably waking my kids up. I put my face between my hands. I was just too frustrated with Taylor this time.
“You know what Chris? We don’t have to go through anything.” She slurred, only making me shake my head even more. She was sick only a few hours before, but as soon as I wasn’t pressed to get her to the basketball game, she was well enough to go and get drunk?
“You right.” With that, I went into the bathroom, locking the door behind me. I already had enough on my mind.
Tonight I had fucked up big time. Cierra was a little kid. I had watched her grow up! I couldn’t help but to feel like I should be disgusted with myself, but the more I thought about tonight, the more I wanted to smile. I had actually had fun with Cierra. That was something I had given up on a long time ago with Taylor.
Tonight was a perfect example of why something between us had to change. All I wanted to do was go out with my wife and have some fun, but she couldn’t even let that happen.
Lately, shit between us had been rocky, and it all came out of nowhere. I had this weird feeling that Taylor was cheating, and it infuriated me every time I thought about it. Hell, she was probably the reason I was out kissing teenagers.
Just then, my phone vibrated on the counter. Reading the message, I heaved a big sigh.
Thanks so much for tonight again. I had the best time ever! Goodnight Chris!
She even added a little kissy emoji at the end. I shook my head, realizing she had probably read way more into that little mishap than she should. I needed to stop worrying about everybody and everything for a while.
Dropping my clothes on the floor, I stepped into the shower. Hopefully this would help me forget it all.
I looked at my phone again. It had been thirty minutes since I’d texted Chris, and I’d still gotten no reply. He had his read receipts on, so I know he’d read it.
Immediately, I got worried. That moment kept playing over and over in my head. The hug I gave him. He had smelled so good, and it seemed like the hug was lasting for forever, but then it ended. The attraction between us hadn’t ended though, and the next thing I knew, our lips were connected.
I couldn’t remember who kissed whom, but I knew from that moment on, things between Chris and me weren’t going to be the same. He might not even want to go to the next Lakers game with me.
I sighed, considering the fact that I might have just fucked a lot of shit up. The more I looked back on that moment, the more paranoid I became. What if Chris wouldn’t talk to me again? What if he told my parents? What if a neighbor saw somebody? What if his wife saw? Thoughts flooded my head, scaring me into a deep sleep.
The next morning I woke up, seeing that Chris had finally replied to my text. Reading it, I was disappointed. There wasn’t any reciprocity of the friendliness and joy that I had sent in my text last night. Not even an emoji. Instead, those four little words sat on my screen like an anchor, weighing down on my spirits.
We need to talk
I gulped back my fear and hastily typed a reply. I wasn’t sure of what else to say, so I just left it at a one-word reply.
I stared impatiently at the small screen of my iPhone, just waiting on his reply. The three little dots popped up on my iMessage screen letting me know that Chris was typing. For some reason, time just seemed to drag on. What was he typing? A novel?
Can you come over today at about 6:00?
I typed a confirmation before going to the bathroom to brush my teeth. After handling the rest of my morning routine, I made my way downstairs and to the kitchen for some breakfast. When I got there, my dad was up and dressed for work, reading the morning paper, his coffee on the table beside him.
“Good morning, Daddy!” I greeted him with kiss on the cheek.
“Morning, Angel” he said, peering at me over the top of the paper. “How did babysitting go last night?”
“Actually, I didn’t babysit.” I said, chewing on the inside of my lip. I popped toast into the toaster.
“So where did you go?” he asked, straightforwardly. For some reason, my dad seemed too inquisitive for my liking.
“Ch-Mr. Brown invited me to a Lakers game. He was going to take his wife, but she got sick.” I told him, waiting very impatiently for my toast.
“That’s interesting. She went out with some friends last night. Your mother and I saw her when she left.”
“We sure did. She had on the ugliest little dress I’d ever seen.” My mom joined in as she entered the kitchen.
Just then, my toast popped up. I put some jelly on it, and immediately started to eat it. I really didn’t care to talk about Chris with my parents anymore. All I could do was pray to God that they didn’t know and wouldn’t ever know that I kissed the grown man who lives next door to us.
“Cierra!” My mom yelled, snapping me out of my thoughts. I looked over at her, guessing I had zoned out.
“I said that I was going to the mall today around 6. Would you like to come?” she asked, her eyebrow raised.
“I can’t.” I said, shortly. I walked over to the sink and placed my plate inside, careful not to look at either of my parents before making my way out of the kitchen and back up the stairs. Plopping on my bed, I tried to block out all of the thoughts from last night.
Time was passing so slowly until 6. It seemed to drag on forever, and all I could do was watch the clock. What would happen when I went over there anyways? What would Chris say to me? What did he think of me? The same paranoia was setting in again.
Oh God, I thought. He probably thinks I’m fast. Or a hoe. Or both. I sighed to myself, realizing that even though this was a good thing in my head, it probably wasn’t going to go over so well. I glanced at the clock one more time, and my stomach fluttered when I realized it was 6:03. I grabbed my phone off the bed and left.
I was next door in a flash. I checked my phone nervously before knocking. I gave myself a little pep talk and reminded myself to handle this like an adult. After a moment, Chris opened the door, letting me in.
“Taylor, uh, took Kayla and CJ to the movies.” He said awkwardly before walking into the living room. I didn’t reply. Instead, I just followed behind him. I was interested in what exactly he had to say to me.
We both sat down on the same couch but on opposite ends. I could feel all the tension in the room, and it was thick. I looked over at him, but he immediately darted his eyes away to something to his opposite side. I looked away again, and we just sat there in silence for a while. Suddenly, Chris cleared his throat and began to talk.
“Look, I just wanted to tell you that it was wrong. I should have never kissed you. I’m not like a pedophile and I’m married and…” I started to just blurt out everything without thinking. She just sat there listening to me with a patient look on her face, but then she cut me off.
“I know all of this already.” She said. “I didn’t think that a kiss would start a relationship. I’m too young, and you have a wife. Obviously, we weren’t going to go any further.” She stated matter-of-factly.
Well this was easy. I thought to myself. At least she wasn’t heartbroken or anything. I would hate to break this kid’s heart. She was cute and fun.
“Well, then,” I cleared my throat, not sure where to go from there. “I’m glad we agree on this.” I said. I was honestly confused. I don’t know what I expected, but this wasn’t it. I just knew she would put up some kind of fight for me. I mean she did say she had a crush on me and she sent me a kissy emoji!
“Was there anything else you wanted to talk about?” She asked. I just shook my head. This conversation had died quickly. “No? Well, I think you should know your wife wasn’t sick last night. My parents saw her going out to some kind of party.”
She had a look of genuine concern for me on her face. I looked at her for a second before nodding my head.
“Yea, I know. She came home a little bit later, drunk on her ass. I’m just so frustrated, you know? Like it’s just starting to feel like our relationship is falling apart. She doesn’t tell me shit no more. I don’t feel like I can trust her. To be real, I’m just fed up…” I trailed off, realizing I was telling my life story to a 16 year old.
When I looked over at her, she was staring at me intently, like she was really listening hard to what I had to say. Then, she reached over and patted me on the shoulder.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to just go on a rant like that.” I said, before laughing nervously as the patting turned into her tracing the tattoos on my arms with her finger.
“These are so nice.” She said, unmindful of my last statement. “Are these the only ones you have?”
“Nah, I got a lot.” I told her, pulling my shirt over my head before even thinking about what I was doing. Her eyes popped out of her head for a second as she took in the tattoos on my chest and abs.
“Whoa, can I touch them?” She asked. I nodded, intrigued by her amazement. She scooted closer and trailed her finger around my chest tracing the words before looking up at me again.
“Chris?” She called, staring into my face. She was a lot closer now, and I could smell her scent. She smelled really good for some reason, almost appetizing.
“I’m sorry.” She told me, causing a confused look to spread across my face. “For this.” She answered my unasked question and then leaned forward and kissed me again. When I realized what was happening, I should have pulled away, but instead I glanced up at the clock, and saw Taylor wouldn’t be home for at least another two hours, so I slid my hands up to the hem of her shirt and pulled it off of her.
One more time couldn’t hurt right?