I quietly went back to my room but I could still hear them going at it even from in there. I didn’t have the courage to bang on the door because I knew it would lead to a confrontation that I did not want to have. Hearing it was bad enough but to see them together, half dressed and sweaty, would have killed me and I didn’t want him to see me as weak as he probably thought I was.
The next morning I came to a resolution.
I was done crying myself to sleep over Michael. He could go screw a bag of gnomes for all I care because I was one hundred percent done with him. He played with my emotions and I’m so angry with him but I was mostly angry with myself for being so vulnerable that he thought he could take advantage of me. Was I so desperate that I just couldn’t see what was happening in front of my face?
The signs were there. The dinner dates, the shopping trips, why he would come over to help her with things all the time when she could have asked me. And I helped them sneak around too by keeping out of their way. Who knows how many times they banged each other while I was under the same roof. Michael probably thought I was too stupid to find out.
Of course he and Lyra are still sleeping together. Not like he can get her pregnant a second time. What upsets me is that if they wanted to date then they didn’t have to sneak around like a couple of children. They could have been honest and upfront about it. Sure, it would have hurt but at least I wouldn’t have allowed Michael’s charm to mislead me into thinking he genuinely loved me when all he wanted to do was play games.
I was so pissed off that I took my anger and frustration with me to work. Darren noticed how tense I was and made the mistake of asking me what was wrong so I ended up venting to him.
I thought I would feel a lot better getting it out to someone else but it didn’t do anything other get me more riled up. Darren patiently listened before telling me to take a break and get some air so I could calm down. I went outside on the back patio which was rarely used except for when we were hosting events because I knew no one would be out there.
The cool night air did help me relax a little but then I heard the sliding door open and when I turned around it was him with a stupid grin on his face moving to hug me. “I’ve been waiting for a chance to see you all evening.”
I pushed him away. “Don’t touch me, you son of a llama!”
“You’re a disgusting pig, that’s what’s wrong and I want nothing to do with you ever! Forget being friends, I don’t you in my life period!”
“Whoa, what happened? We were good the other night.”
“Do you think I’m stupid Michael? Do you think I’m just a complete idiot?”
“Of course you do! You knew all along how I crazy I was over you so you tried to mess with my head!”
“Where is this coming from?”
He was feigning innocence but I wasn’t buying it. “You thought I wouldn’t find out, didn’t you? But I know now so your sick games aren’t going to work on me anymore!”
“Stop. Hold up. Find out what? Maia, I have no idea what you’re talking about!”
“I know about you and Lyra, dammit!” I practically screamed at him.
“Me and Lyra? What the…there’s nothing going on between me and Lyra!”
“You’re such a pathetic liar! I heard you guys last night, screwing in her bedroom!”
He glared at me for a few seconds before saying, “What the f…? That was not me!”
I snorted. “Oh, it wasn’t you? Couldn’t you come up with a better excuse than that?”
“I swear, it wasn’t me! I wasn’t with Lyra last night at all.”
“You’re lying! I heard you. I heard the both of you! She called out your name Michael! She called your name! I know you were there!”
“Maia…” He tried to touch me again but I pushed him back.
“Don’t friggin touch me! You can’t talk your way out of this one! What were you trying to do anyway, huh? You thought if you could sleep with both of us you can go brag to your friends that you hooked up with two sisters? Was that your plan? Why you wanted to get back with me? Tell me! I need to know!”
“Why? Huh, why? Why should I even say anything? You obviously have your mind made up about me so what’s the use?”
“Oh no, don’t you dare act like the victim!”
“I’m the victim? No, that’s your shtick, not mine. You’re just using this as another excuse to pull away from me and you know what, I’m done. I’m sick of it!”
“Yeah that’s right. I did not sleep with Lyra last night but you refuse to believe me because you have it in your head that I can’t keep it in my pants because of my past. It’s why you were so quick to believe I cheated on you.”
“That is a load of crap! Don’t try to turn this around on me…!”
“You’re using this just like you used the baby as an excuse to not be with me and at first I thought you were just afraid or insecure but now I know…you simply don’t want me but you don’t wanna be the bad guy so you make me the bad guy so you can justify your actions!”
“That’s not true. I did want to be with you Michael. I love you with all I have…”
“And I love you too but I can’t keep putting myself through this. You were right. This situation is too complicated and if you’re gonna be accusing me like this then it doesn’t make sense for us to be together!”
I started to feel like maybe I was wrong and that he was telling me the truth. I wanted to believe him so bad but I also didn’t want to be made a fool. I was jealous of him and Lyra. Could it be that I allowed my jealousy to let me believe the worst of him? “Michael…I’m…”
“What hurts the most is that you don’t trust me. I have absolutely no interest in Lyra in that way and when the truth comes out and you find out that it wasn’t me, don’t bother to call me!”
“I’m done. I’m sorry…I just can’t do this anymore.”
The look in his eyes told me he was telling the truth and in my heart, I believed him but my mind remembered what I heard so I figured my judgment was simply clouded by my love for him. He wanted me to trust him but trusting him would mean I couldn’t trust myself. I know what I heard and yet I was starting to doubt myself. Could I be wrong?
He went back to the bar and I went back to the kitchen. I somehow think Darren heard our argument based on the look of pity he gave me but I grateful he didn’t say anything. I didn’t want to talk to him or anyone for that matter. I just wanted to get back to work so I threw all of my energy into cooking for the rest of the evening.
When my shift was over I went through the back door instead of walking through the front just because I didn’t want to see Michael again. Seeing him again after what happened would only hurt more than it already did. I felt like crawling up into a hole and just staying there until all my pain and worries went away. I went home and decided a run on the treadmill would do me some good by helping me clear my head.
I ran on that thing for hours before it occurred to me that I was pushing myself past my limit. I guess I was so caught up in my thoughts that I didn’t realise how much time had passed. I was tired and in need of a hot shower but as I was headed upstairs I noticed Lyra left the TV on. I went to take it off when she entered the room.
I didn’t think she would be up and about so late. I really wasn’t in the mood to chit-chat with her especially after what happened since seeing her alone just brought up that anger once again.
“Where the hell have you been Maia?” She shouted. Great! Just what I needed at that moment. “Michael was blowing up my phone all night yelling at me because of you! I think you seriously screwed up the good relationship I was beginning to have with him!”
She had to be kidding me! “Oh I’m sorry I messed things up with your new woohoo buddy. Won’t happen again, I promise. He’s all yours Lyra! As usual, you always get what you want!”
“What are you talking about Mai?”
“Why didn’t you tell me you were sleeping with him? Didn’t you think I had the right to know?!”
“A right to know? You were the one saying you were over him. If I wanted to sleep with Michael, what does it matter to you? Not that I did anyway.”
“Bullcrap! I heard you two going at it like bunnies the other night in your room!”
She groaned in frustration. “Ugh, Mai! That wasn’t Michael. I mean it wasn’t your Michael. It was a guy from work whose name is Michael too.”
“Yeah, well, pregnancy has made me extra…amorous, you know? And I haven’t been with anyone since I conceived. I asked Michael, your Michael, to help me out since he’s the father and all but he turned me down obviously because of you. And well there’s this guy in the band named Michael as well who’s always had a crush on me so I asked him to give me a ride home and I invited him in and then one thing led to another and… so wait a minute, oh! I can see why you thought it Michael Michael. Ah crap!”
My ears felt like they were gonna explode. I could not believe what I was hearing. “So let me get this straight…you hooked up with a man while pregnant with another man’s baby? How low can you go Lyra? And do you realise what you did? You made me believe you were sleeping with the man I love!”
“Okay, first of all, there’s no need to be so judgemental. You’ll understand when you get pregnant someday what it’s like to have uncontrollable urges…”
“You’ve always had damn uncontrollable urges and somehow your urges have always landed me in the fire! First with Luca and now Michael…I’ve lost him because of you!”
“Because of me? Oh no, don’t blame me for that!” She yelled. “You decided to break up with him when you knew you loved the guy!”
“I did that for the sake of your baby!”
“Oh please, this isn’t the 18th century. No one’s gonna care if the father of my baby happens to be your boyfriend! Everyone close to us knows the real story anyway. You did this for yourself! And then you decided to accuse him of sleeping with me without getting all the facts. Forget what you think you heard, you should have asked me instead of jumping to conclusions. And the guy is crazy about you Maia! There’s a reason why I call him your Michael. How could you think he would sleep with me when it’s so obvious to everyone but you how madly in love he is with you. This isn’t anyone’s fault but yours!”
I was so mad but I was reasonable enough to realise she made some good points. I should have confronted her first about Michael before accusing him of sleeping with her. I shouldn’t have broken up with him in the first place and then acted like I didn’t love him. If I didn’t do that then there would be no question about what was going on between him and Lyra. My jealousy really was all in my head. She was right, I screwed everything up on my own!
“Ah!” She cried out as she grabbed her stomach.
“What’s wrong? Are you okay?” I asked in concern as I practically jumped over the couch to get to her side.
“I think my water just broke!”