Forever with Me / Page 51

Page 51


“You do love him,” Blake says calmly, and turns to look at me. “And he obviously loves you.”

“Loves me? He loves me and he accuses me of screwing around with my best friend?”

“Look around, Leash.” His arm sweeps around the room. “Your clothes are everywhere. I was half naked, and you came out of the shower. If it had been me walking in on this, I would have killed him. I’m lucky my jaw isn’t broken right now.”

“He should trust me!” I yell in response. “I would never do that to him!”

“I agree, but did you know about the ex-fiance?”

“No.” I shake my head and pace to the kitchen to open some wine. “And that’s another thing that pisses me off. He was freaking engaged? How has he never mentioned that little tidbit before?”

And why in the hell does the thought of another woman wearing his ring make me homicidal?

“Sounds like it’s not exactly a good memory for him,” he replies dryly. “Besides, did you ever ask him if he’d been engaged before?”

“Why would I ask him that?” I turn and stare at Blake like he’s grown an extra head, but all he does is shrug.

“You didn’t help things, you know.”

“Are you saying this is my fault?” I demand.

“Part of it, yes. He jumped to conclusions, but you refused to deny it, Alecia. Seriously, you were both pretty fucked up.”

I sigh and hang my head as some of the mad leaves me. “What he accused us of is horrible.”

“Definitely,” he agrees. “But you didn’t say, Dominic, I would never fuck Blake. He’s too good for me and the sex was too amazing and I can’t ever do that again.”

I roll my eyes, but he just grins.

“No, instead you said, and this is the Cliff’s Notes version, but as a man, this is what he heard, fuck you. I don’t have to justify anything to you. Get the eff out.”

“Shit.”

“I have dinner with Emily tonight, so I’m going to go. I suggest you go to the vineyard and apologize, Leash.”

I wrinkle my nose, but I know he’s right.

“I hate the taste of crow.”

“Take a salt shaker.”

***

I try to call Dom’s cell phone, but there’s no answer. In fact, it goes straight to voice mail.

He’s so angry he shut off his phone?

Shit.

I pull into Dom’s driveway and walk inside without knocking.

“Dom!” I poke my head into the playroom, the dining room, the kitchen.

No luck.

“Dom!”

I’m walking briskly down the hallway to his office when Celeste sticks her head out, surprise written on her pretty face.

“Alecia.”

“Hey, is Dom in his office?”

“No, I’m sorry.”

“Oh.” I turn toward the back of the house. “Is he out in the barn?”

“No, he’s on his way to Italy.”

I blink and turn back to her, sure I’ve misheard her.

“Excuse me?”

“He’s on a plane, Alecia. He got called home.”

This is his home.

“When?”

“Not long ago.”

He’s on his way to Italy, and he didn’t tell me?

“When will he be back?”

“He didn’t know. It could be a few weeks. Maybe a month.”

“He’s going to Italy for a month.” I sound like an idiot, repeating everything she’s saying, but I can’t help it.

Italy is going to love you.

“It could be less.”

I nod and then shake my head, trying to clear it. He left for Italy without telling me.

“Are you okay, dear?”

“Oh, I’m fine.”

“Do you want me to give him a message?”

“No.” I shake my head and offer her a bright smile. “No message. Thanks.”

I turn and walk as quickly as I can out of Dominic’s house, to my car, throw it in drive and speed away, barely feeling the tears running down my cheeks. I try to call his cell phone again, but it goes straight to voice mail.

He’s on a motherfucking plane.

I dial Blake’s number.

“If you’re calling me, it didn’t go well.”

“He’s going to Italy,” I reply, and hate the sound of tears in my voice.

“Seriously?” Blake asks.

“I can’t make this crap up. The going gets tough and he runs off to freaking Italy. He didn’t even stay and fight for me, Blake. What in the hell is up with that?”

Blake is trying to talk, but I’m on a roll, angry and frustrated and so fucking hurt I don’t know what to do with myself.

“I mean, am I that big of an idiot? Am I so unlovable that people can just leave me without so much as looking back?”

“Alecia, stop. Take a breath.”

I do as he says and wipe angrily at the tears on my cheeks.

“He was supposed to take me to Italy with him, and instead, as soon as he thinks the very worst of me, he hops on a plane.”

I can’t fucking believe it.

“Alecia, I don’t think this has as much to do with Dominic as it does with you and your own issues.”

“I don’t have issues,” I reply stubbornly.

“Oh, sweetheart, you have more issues than any of the Real Housewife chicks.”

“I’m going to tell Emily you watch that crap.”

“Seriously, Alecia. You don’t know that Dom has abandoned you.”

“People don’t stay in my life, Blake,” I reply softly. “They just don’t.”

I end the call and stare blindly at the freeway as I drive home. There are no more tears, just stunned silence. I park and walk up to my condo, let myself in, and stare in disbelief at the shoes Dom gave me where I left them when I hurriedly toed them off to get ready for my run with Blake. I pace around the space, stare out the window at the ferry floating by, and then pace some more.

People don’t stay in my life.

And why don’t they? I never speak to my parents. My ex-husband walked away from our relationship with barely a look back.

I’m tired of being disposable.

You’re my treasure.

God, he was a damn talented charmer, I’ll give him that.

With my mind made up, I fish my phone out of my bag and dial Emily’s number.

“Hey, boss.”

“Hey,” I reply, putting a smile in my voice, and quite proud that my voice doesn’t shake. “I’ve had something come up. Would you mind taking over for me for the next week or so?”


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