Friday, September 30, 2011

Chapter 53-My Own Worst Enemy

"You never answered my question."
"What question?"  I knew what he was referring to, but was still trying to dodge it all the same.  It had been about two weeks since he proposed to me and we hadn't talked about it since that night.
"You know what what question."
"Come on, come to mommy."
Teaching the boys to walk was going well, but they were still a little wobbly.
"You can't avoid it forever.  I'm not going anyway so you will need to answer me.  Do you love me?"
"Yes of course I do."
"Then the answer is simple."
"I told Carter I would meet him for lunch today.  Will you be ok with the boys alone?"

He gave Dunham a kiss on the head then walked out of the room.  I got both the boys changed and put them in their cribs with a bottle.  The door to his office was closed.  I thought about telling him I was leaving, but I decided against it.  I knew I was going to have to answer him eventually, but I wasn't ready to tell him no just yet.  The answer was anything but simple.

I was gone for about three hours and when I arrived home Marcus was outside playing with the boys.
Marcus didn't even look up at me.  He was clenching his jaw, I could tell he was angry about something.  I knew he didn't like the way I left things earlier, but I didn't expect the level of hostility I felt coming from him.
"Did you have a nice lunch?"  The question sounded more like an accusation.
"Yes it was nice to get out a bit."
"That's good." Then he got up and went back into his office.  We spent the rest of the day not really speaking.  He would help with the boys, but refused to talk to me about anything unless it had to do with them.  That night after the boys were in bed, I was hoping he would tell me why he was so angry.

"I'm going to sleep in the guest room tonight."
"What? Why?"
"Also I'm going to head back to Riverview for a little while.  There are some things I need to take care for work that can't be done remotely."  When he looked at me, his face was filled with mixed emotions, anger, sadness, grief, and all of it caused by me.

"Marcus, wait.  Tell me why you're so angry at me.  Is it because I won't answer your proposal?"  We had been doing the dance of me avoiding his answer for the last two weeks, I couldn't comprehend what changed today.
"Amari I love you, and probably will always love you but I won't be made a fool of.  I think after two weeks of avoiding it, I know what your answer is especially after today."
"Today, what are you talking about?"
"You didn't have lunch with Carter.  Unless he has the ability to be in two places at once, he stopped by today while you were supposedly at lunch with him."
He was suppose to be working.  I didn't think he would come by the house, last time I had spoken with him he said he was pulling a 24 shift at the hospital.  I was caught in a lie and feared what the repercussions would be.  The one thing he has asked of me was to be honest, and I couldn't even do that. 

"Marcus it's not what you think."
"What I think is the woman I love lied to me today.  She's still hiding things from me and I won't live that way."  His words were strained but I could hear the melancholy in his voice.
"Please let me explain."
"I rather not hear the details of your secret meeting with him.  It's obvious that no matter what, I can't compete with him."
I was the reason nothing good lasted for me.  I was out to sabotage any bit of happiness that comes along.

"Are you sleeping with him Amari?"
I couldn't answer him.  I was astonished by the accusation that he believed I would cheat on him.  I guess I couldn't blame him but it was still upsetting that he would think that of me.
"Are you!" he quietly demanded.
I shook my head.  I wiped the tears away from my cheeks, trying to get the words out to make him understand.
"I...I didn't go see him."
"Please stop lying to me.  I know you still have feelings for him, it's obvious when you close up when I ask about him.  You are still seeing him otherwise why would you feel the need to lie to me today?"
He had insecurities when it came to my relationship with Mulo which probably stemmed from the fact that he was a subject I didn't like talking about. "I'm not lying.  I haven't seen him since that day I told you everything."  I was shaking, scared of losing the best thing that has happened to me.  "I went to him that day to ask him to let me go.  I wanted to be with you, to try and see if things could work for us.  So far he has stayed away."
"Well if you didn't see him, where did you go and why couldn't you tell me the truth?"
"I um, I went to the cemetery." 
"And you couldn't tell me you wanted to visit your babies?  That doesn't make any sense.  Why would you feel the need to hide that?"
"Because before that I went to see Marisol." I blurted out.  The look on his face showed he still didn't fully believe what I was saying.

"Why would you go there? From everything you've told me about her, she's dangerous and you should keep your distance.  And that doesn't change the fact that you lied to me."
"I wanted to tell you yes.  I really would like to be free to do that but with this thing hanging over me I can't.  I can't tie you to a life that that, it's not fair for you.  I wanted to reason with her, to try and appeal to the softer side of her that I hoped was still there."
"What was her answer?"
I thought back on the conversation I had with Marisol.  She truly was a soulless person.  She was willing to let me out of this but for a cost and it was one I wouldn't to pay.  I wasn't like her or my father and I couldn't just trade away someone for the benefit of myself.
"She said no."
"I leave in two days.  I will stay in the guest room until then."
"Marcus, I'm sorry.  Please don't leave me.  I need you."  I wrapped my arms around his neck begging him to stay.  "I sorry, please forgive me.  I don't know why I didn't just tell you."  It felt as if he wanted to return my embrace but was stopping himself.  He removed my arms from his neck and kissed my hands.
"Goodnight Amari."

I was my own worst enemy.  Marcus asked very little of me, and I still managed to screw it up.  I lay there unable to sleep.  Thinking back on my fight with Marcus, he was hurt and disappointed in my lying to him still especially when it wasn't necessary.  I was such an idiot.  Then my thoughts turned to my conversation with Marisol.

"You want to be free?"
"Yes, this thing was between you and my father.  This baby thing doesn't hurt him, it only hurts me.  He clearly made his choice and I wasn't it so why am I being punished?"
"It started out that way but things changed along the way.  You took something from me, so I want something in return."

"What are you talking about?  I haven't taken anything from you, I've been the one giving.  You have my daughter, you have destroyed my life, you have set out to do and say whatever mean and hateful thing you can think of to me.  So what exactly did I take from you?"
"You aren't very bright are you?"
I just rolled my eyes at her.  I no longer wanted to be a part of her game.  It had already cost me more than anyone should ever have to pay.
"I don't have a lot of time here, just get to the point please."

"This would make the second time I lost a man to a weak and pathetic human.  I don't like being replaced and I don't like losing.  You want to stop having babies, fine.  I will just relieve you of that very handsome chocolatey gentleman that seems to be so in love with you.  Marcus is it?"

"No.  He has nothing to do with this, and really neither do I.  You want to be all pissed because Mulo fell in love with me, well you only have yourself to blame!  If you hadn't been so out for revenge against my father, we may never have crossed paths.  You sent him into my life, you started that chain of events!  Do you know how much easier my life would be without him or you in it?"
"Well aren't you all brave.  Marcus must be doing something right, I didn't think you had this much fight in you.  I don't know if I like it or if I should just kill you now."
I didn't know I had that much fight in me either, but I had something to fight for.  That made all the difference at that moment and it was the truth.  She wanted to be jealous over Mulo's feelings for me, but she put him in my life and it backfired on her.  Now she wanted to punish me more.
"Those are my terms take it or leave it.  No more babies, I get to have sweet loving Marcus."
"I don't know why I expected you to have a heart." 
"Well you can thank your father for that." 

That was it, I wasn't going to let any of them cause me any more pain or heartache.  I would find another way to be rid of Marisol later but tonight I was going to make sure the one person who didn't have any ulterior motives for being with me, didn't leave me. He may be mad at me, but I wasn't giving up that easy.  I got up and headed over to the guest room.  I opened the door, he was laying across the bed but I couldn't tell if he was sleeping.

"What do you want Amari?"
He sat up as I walked over and climbed onto the bed.
"I can't say yes right now but that doesn't mean I won't ever say yes should you ask me again at a later date." As I spoke I laid gentle kisses on his neck.

"But what I can promise is no more lies or secrets." My kisses started moving up his neck.  I kissed him behind his ear, then on his cheek and finally on his lips as I pushed him down onto the bed.  I straddled him and threw my nightgown onto the floor.

He started grinning, "Are you trying to use sex to get out of trouble?"
"Maybe.  Is it working?" I asked continuing to plant kisses on his body.
"Oh yeah, it's working."
We spent the next few hours enjoying each other to the point of exhaustion.  It would take a lot of coffee to keep up with the boys tomorrow but it would be worth it.

The next morning things were better.  He was still upset about the lying but he had forgiven my idiotic indiscretion but with the condition it would be the last time.  No matter how bad the news may be, I was to tell him so we could work through it together.
"Do you really have to go?"
"Yes.  I've told them I was coming so I have to go.  You and the boys can come with me.  I know my mom has been wanting to meet them."
Back to Riverview, that would mean seeing my parents as well. 
"The boys have a doctor's appointment, but we can fly out after."
"Are you sure about traveling with two toddlers on your own?"
"Yes, I'll be fine."

It was a depressing day when Marcus left.  I knew I would be seeing him again in two days, but he'd been staying with me since I had the babies.  This was his first trip back, and I missed him as soon as he walked out of the door.  The boys were ready for their naps so I was putting them in their cribs when I heard the door chime as it was opened.

"Hey babe did you forget something." I called walking towards the living room.
"What are you doing in my house?" I demanded.
"You really should lock your doors, you never know what kind of crazy person could walk in."
"It was locked."
"No, I knocked and it opened."
I knew he was lying.  I know I had closed and locked the door.
"What do you want?"
"I just came to see the boys.  I haven't really had a chance yet."
"Well they're napping so you will have to come back later, but call first."
"I could stay for a while.  I would hate for you to get lonely with your boyfriend gone now."
How did he know Marcus had left?  I was getting a very eerie feeling about him being here.  Even more than the usual creepy feeling I got when he was around me.
"We'll be fine, now leave."
"Are you this rude to all of your guests or do you save that special fire just for me?  I like it, kinda turns me on."

I was very uncomfortable with his comments and the way he was looking at me.  He always made me feel so exposed and dirty and I didn't want to spend another minute alone with him.  One of the boys started crying.
"I need to go see about him, so please leave now."
"Oh, let me." He walked passed him towards the back of the house ignoring my calls for him to stop.  He got to the nursery and picked up Dax.

"Aren't you a cute guy.  You look just like your father."  The way he said those words sent chills down my spine.  I went over and took Dax from him and put him back in his crib.  After getting him settled down I found David standing in my bedroom.
"So this is where the magic happens."  He was focused in on the bed and he had a glazed over look in his eyes.

"Get out of my room and get out of my house now before I call the police."
He just looked at me and laughed. He stepped towards to me and grabbed my arm yanking me closer to him.  He pressed his body up against mine.

"I am the police." he whispered angrily in my ear before leaving.  I locked the door as soon as he walked out, my hands were shaking so bad it was hard to press the buttons to set the alarm.

So bonus pics.  The first one was in the last chapter but no one spotted the creeper.  Can you find him now?  The last two are extra pics of Marcus being a good daddy.

Continue Reading: "Chapter 53-My Own Worst Enemy"

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Chapter 52-New Arrivals

Life was good for the first time in a long time.  Marcus was very loving and attentive whenever he was in town.  He did his best to make it to doctor appointments and would feel terrible if he missed one.  He was certainly racking up the frequent flyer miles.  With my due date fast approaching, he took time off so he could stay with me.  Having him with me every night was comforting and started to feel like I had something real and lasting.
Carter's brother and sister-in-law welcomed their own baby into the world.  He was anxious to go see her, but put off his trip until after Marcus was going to be around full time.  He and Marcus got along great and between the two of them I didn't have to worry about anything.  It was great to be pampered.
My situation wasn't completely ignored.  On occasion during dinner or just hanging around the house Marcus would ask me more questions.  He still couldn't fully understand how me having so many babies served as revenge against my father.

We were in the middle of one of those conversations when I went into labor.  I was around 3 weeks early, Marcus was trying to appear calm but I could see the panic on his face.  He was concerned about me and the babies especially them with me delivering early.  I didn't want to worry him anymore, but I was scared too.  I kept flashing back to the last time I went into labor.  I knew they were bigger and could survive but I was still scared.

Once at the hospital they settled me into my room and hooked me up to the monitors.  Marcus called our moms and Carter to let them know I was in labor.  Seven hours later we welcomed Dax and Dunham Smith into the world.  I gave the boys his last name since he was the only boy and responsible for carrying on the family name.  His parents were very happy and grateful.

Marcus was instantly a great father.  He got up in the middle of the night, never complained about changing dirty diapers, I couldn't have been happier.  Many nights I would find him in the nursery just watching them sleep.
"I knew I'd find you in here."
"They look so peaceful."

He slipped his arms around me and gave me a soft kiss on the cheek.  I nestled my head against his shoulder and enjoyed the silence of that moment.  We stood watching our boys sleep.
"Marry me" He whispered in my ear
"Marry me.  I love you Amari and you have given me the greatest gift in the world, my boys.  Now make the the happiest man by marrying me."
He was serious, I didn't know how to respond. 
"Marcus,"  I couldn't answer him, instead I ran and locked myself in the bathroom.  I sank down on the floor.

He had just proposed to me, and I was hiding in a bathroom.  Isn't this what I wanted?  I asked for normal, and normal people have kids and get married yet I was suddenly very terrified at the idea.  I buried my face in my hands.  What the hell is wrong with me.  Why couldn't I just say yes?
"Amari" he was knocking at the door.
"You running from me was exactly the reaction I was expecting.  Open the door."
I didn't answer him, what was I going to say?  I sat there hoping one of the boys would wake up and cry.  Anything to get him away from the door, but they were good for a change and remained sleeping.
"Open the door and talk to me.   Please baby just open the door."
I couldn't stay in here forever so I got up and opened the door.
"I'm sorry.  I guess I just panicked."
"Why would you panic?"
"Because nothing good lasts for me."
He hugged me.  "I'm not going anywhere.  I promise.  I have you and my boys, there is no way I would leave you."

I wanted to believe him.
"You know, the doctor said we should wait before trying for another baby.  He didn't say we couldn't practice."
"Why Mr. Smith are you suggesting what I think you're suggesting?" I asked already starting to remove his shirt.  We didn't need to say anything more.  That night for the first time since we conceived the boys, we made love.  He was sweet and tender, afterwards we fell asleep in each others arms.


Sorry for the short chapter.  I promise the next one will be longer.  I gave you bonus pics of Dax and Dunham.  They are the first set of twins I've had that actually look alike and they both got their dad's green eyes.  I was most excited about that.

 Dunham Smith
Dax Smith
Continue Reading: "Chapter 52-New Arrivals"

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Chapter 51-Second Chances

The days ticked by and with each one that passed without contact from Marcus saddened me more.  Carter tried so hard to keep me positive but it wasn't his job to clean up the mess I had made for myself.  I was thankful for his friendship, but I was starting to feel guilty.  I was getting much more out of it than he was although he never complained.  If he wasn't working, he was at my house.  I was not comfortable at his because I was never sure when David would come home.  The last time I was over was a nightmare.  Carter was out on the phone because there was some issue at the hospital so I decided to cook him dinner.  I thought he ate out way too much and greasy diner food just wasn't healthy.
"All you need is to be in a french maid outfit and this would be perfect."
"Don't you have some poor naive girl to go corrupt?"  I replied closing the door to the refrigerator.
"I rather spend my night with a more experienced woman such as yourself." Their kitchen was small and he closed the distance between us quickly.  He pinned me up against the refrigerator.

"You know you want me.  You just like playing hard to get.  I don't mind the chase will make my prize at the end all that more enjoyable."
He leaned it to try and kiss me but I turned my head.  I tried to shove him off but he wouldn't budge.
"Get off of me you jerk.  You are seriously delusional if you think I would ever let you touch me!"
"Oh not only will you let me, you'll be begging me to."
"David what the hell are you doing?"

I was so glad Carter walked back in.  David stepped back and I quickly moved away.
"We were just talking."
"She's pregnant for goodness sakes.  Why can't you just leave her alone."
David didn't say anything.  He just winked at me then walked out.

"Are you ok?"
I just nodded my head. 
"Why are you his friend?  He's such a slime."
"It's a long story for another time.  I'm sorry he won't leave you alone.  He's use to women falling all over him.  Let's just go out for dinner."
"That's ok.  I've lost my appetite."
Carter walked me home.  I took a nice long hot shower then went to bed.

The next morning I woke up got dressed and started my daily routine of cleaning the house.  When my phone started ringing I assumed it was Carter checking on me.
"Hey beautiful."
My heart skipped a beat.  It was nice to hear his voice again, but I was nervous about what he was going to say.
"Marcus, I didn't think I would hear from you again."
"I know, I'm sorry.  I needed to think a bit and it just took longer than I expected.  Is this a good time for us to talk?"
"Yes, sure."
"Ok great."  Then the phone went dead.  I didn't know if he hung up or if the line just went dead.  As I started to redial him there was a knock at my door.

"I didn't want to have this conversation over the phone."
I stared at him.  He had flown back and that made me more nervous than ever.  I didn't have time to say anything as he pulled me into a kiss.  Once I got over the brief shock, I eagerly kissed him back.
"I didn't get to give you a proper hello last time."

He flashed his dazzling grin at me and my heart fluttered. 
"How are you feeling?"
"I'm good.  Carter does a great job looking after me."
"Do I need to be jealous of Carter?"
"No.  He's just a friend."
We settled into a silence.  Neither of us wanted to start the topic of the real reason he was here.
"Amari, I need to know.  Are they really mine?"
It was a legitimate question considering the circumstances but it hurt all the same that he felt he had to ask it.
"Yes.  You're the only person I've been with since the twins died."  I spoke softly rubbing my belly not wanting to meet his gaze.
"Ok.  Well then I want to know it all.  You are going to be the mother of my children so no more secrets.  No more coded talk about complications.  I have the same right to know whatever it is that he knows.  Then I can decide for myself where I go from there."

I thought over my reply carefully.  He was right in a way but I still doubted his ability to understand and accept me fully.  I was cheating him out of making the choice for himself, but I wanted to protect myself from the pain of rejection.
"What if I can't tell you?"
"I don't see it as you can't but instead that you won't.  If that is the case, then there is no way for us to move forward.  There would be no trust between us."
It was obvious that he has spent a lot of time thinking this over.  It was either all or nothing, I knew he'd be there for the kids but our friendship would be over.
"I have to do something."
"What?  Now?"
"Yes.  I want to tell you, I really do but first I need to do something.  Can you give me two hours?"
"Two hours.  I can do that."
Marcus left and for the first time I drove the car he gave me to go see him.

I hadn't seen or talked to Mulo since the day he came by the house.  I knew he was around, invading my dreams.
"You know it's customary to at least send a thank you card when someone gives you a gift."
"Yes you're right, it was very rude of me not to call and thank you."
My heart was racing.  I wasn't sure if he knew why I was there, if he did he didn't let on to that fact.
Can I offer you something to drink?"
"No, um I came to talk to you."
"Only talk, where's the fun in that?"
I could do this.  I could make it through this without getting sidetracked.  I had to.

"You can stop now.  I already know what you're going to say.  We've been down this road before and you know how that ended."
"But it's different this time.  I want to, no I'm going to tell him the truth about everything."
"No you're not."
"Yes I am.  I have to.  From the moment I met you I have been confused and controlled and I don't want that.  Sometimes I wonder if...I...if I really love you or if it's just you making me."  I wanted to take the words back as soon as they were out.  The look on his face was frightening.

"Is that what you really think?  Do you think I control your heart racing when I walk into the room?  Do you think I control the change of your breathing when I get near you?  Do you think I control the look of desire in your eyes when I kiss you?  You loved me before we met, I didn't control that.  I may have used it to my advantage a time or two but you my dear love me all on your own."
I diverted my gaze from his.  He was correct but sometime I just wasn't sure.  He had put me through so much and I couldn't understand how I could still love such a man.
"I'm sorry." I said placing my hands on his chest.  "But can you understand why I would think that?"
Mulo was silent.

"Please let me go.  I want a chance of normal.  Is that so much to ask for?"
"Your life is not one for normal any longer." 
"But I could have something close.  I need that and if you truly loved me you would understand that."
He turned and walked away from me.  He was seething with anger.
"Mulo please.  This isn't good for either of us, you have to see that."
"I won't allow it."
I walked up behind him and nestled my head on his back.

"You know my heart and my head.  I do love Marcus but I'm only in love with you.  I need this.  Please let me just try.  If he doesn't understand, and leaves me I will never ask anything like this of you again.  But if he can accept me, then I want to have normal for as long as I can.  You know the saying if you love something let it go.  Please I'm begging you to let me go."
He took deep controlled breaths.  We stood there neither of us wanting to speak, our relationship however undefined as it was, was torture for both of us.  I didn't want to let go so I tightened my arms around him.
"Get out."

In one swift movement he was standing behind me holding me tightly.  He gently caressed my face before whispering "He won't last.  When you come crawling back, and you will come crawling back, I make no guarantees that I will want you then.  Now get out!"  He walked away and I left.  I was shaking when I got to my car.  I wasn't sure what reaction I was expecting, why I thought he would understand that I needed this.

I had about half an hour to calm my nerves before Marcus would be back.  I just hoped things would go smoothly and he wouldn't think I was a complete nut job.  I really wished I could drink right now because I sure could use one.  I nearly jumped out of my skin when the doorbell rang.

"Hey.  You came back."
"You said two hours."
"Ok let's sit.  I'm going to tell you a story and at the end of that story you will know why I tried to not have you involved and I hope you understand.  If you don't, I won't be angry I only ask two things.  One still be a part of your children's lives.  Two tell no one else.  This isn't easy for me and I rather not be made a spectacle of."
"I can do that."

I started fidgeting with the hem of my shirt.  Marcus took my hand and smiled at me.  With that I let it go.  I told him about Mulo and meeting him.  I told him about Drake and Jesse.  I let him know about Marisol and how my dad had traded me and Amella to her to keep his secret.  I did fudge on what that secret was.  I couldn't tell him that my dad use to be a vampire or that two of my kids were.  I kept the whole vampire thing out of the story.  I know it wasn't completely honest of me, but I didn't want to sound any crazier than I already did.  When I was finished he sat in a stunned silence.
"So...your dad who was a cop, use to be some sort of criminal.  He dated this Marisol but dumped her after forcing her to have an abortion.  She then threatens to turn him in unless you give her 100 babies to replace the one she lost.  And she killed or had your sister killed as a warning she was serious.  Did I miss anything?"
I shook my head.
"That is quite a complication."

"I understand if you go running for the door.  I'm sorry I shouldn't have gotten you involved.  It's just that day I had just found out from my dad and I didn't plan on sleeping with you."
"Is it even possible for you to do what she asks?"
"I don't know, but I think it's more about hurting me to get back at my dad than actually completing the task."
"And do they all have to be by different guys?"
"Um...I don't know, it's just worked out that way."
"Well.  I guess we have a lot of work to do."
Continue Reading: "Chapter 51-Second Chances"