David and Diane have been married for years; then there is Julie, the young secretary whose axis collides with the couple’s in ways none of them saw coming.
Diane’s silence continued when we left her parents’ house, and when we got back to the house, she went straight to the bedroom, and shutting the door firmly behind her, showed no sign of leaving it anytime soon.
Because the maid was not yet back, I had expected her to come down at some point to make dinner, but by six she still had not appeared; so, I decided to go up and check on her. She was arranging the wardrobe and did not pause when I walked in.
“Hi,” I greeted her quietly as I perched on the edge of the bed behind her.
“Hi,” she answered, folding clothes and not turning to face me.
“I think the kids are getting hungry.”
“Are you going to be coming down soon to fix them something?” I pressed on.
“Do you want to tell me what’s wrong?” I sighed in exasperation.
At that, she finally turned to face me, her eyes blazing: “Do you want to tell me if you’re still sleeping with her? Do you want to tell me why it took my father calling you, for you to come for us? Do you want to tell me why you never called, even to talk to the children? Do you want to tell me any of that, David?”
“I didn’t send you away, Diane; you chose to leave; so, it was up to you to return. I didn’t call the kids because I didn’t know what to say to them if they asked when they were coming home, since only you had the answer to that question,” I reasoned calmly, like I was explaining something to a child.
“And my first question? Are you still sleeping with her? Or is the fact that you left it out, answer enough?”
“I don’t want to talk about Julie right now.”
“Of course you don’t!” she scoffed in disgust.
“I promise we’ll talk about it; just not right now – let’s get the kids fed first,” I tried to distract her.
“They’re your kids too; feed them,” she shrugged and turned back to arranging the wardrobe, effectively dismissing me.
“I’ll order for pizza,” I sighed, and standing up, left the room.
It felt great to be back at the house, in my own space, with my own things, in a place where I still felt I had the right to be; and yet, as I looked around the bedroom, I could not help but wonder if David had brought his whore here. Had she gone through my things? Had she slept in my bed?
The sheets had not been changed, and there were no obvious signs of anything untoward having gone on, but the thought persisted, and I felt compelled to go over everything in the room, changing the sheets, scrubbing the bathroom, and rearranging the wardrobe.
Initially David left me to it, which I appreciated, but when he came upstairs and acted like he didn’t know what was wrong, I lost it!
I had just been through the week from hell because of his infidelity, and he had the audacity to ask me what was wrong! I needed to know where I stood in this marriage and until he was ready to give me those answers, I did not even want to look at him.
Although he tried to guilt-trip me about not cooking dinner, I was not in the least bit moved. I had bigger issues on my mind than what the kids were going to eat for dinner – I needed to know just what it was that I had come back to.
After David left, I decided to go to work, although I was not obliged to work over the weekends; there was always plenty to be done, and Mark rewarded the overtime.
Since David had come into my life, I no longer really needed the extra cash, but today I needed a distraction from thoughts of David’s reunion with his wife. What would she cook him for dinner tonight? Would he make love to her?
I stayed at work until it started to get dark, and then, not being in a hurry to get back to the flat, decided to walk home. The exercise got me hungry, but I could not be bothered to cook for one; so, after a quick shower, I settled for toast and tea.
I had not realized until then, just how accustomed I had gotten to David’s presence over the past week. The apartment was small, but it felt huge and empty without him; was this what sharing him would always feel like?
As night fell, I kept glancing at my phone, expecting him to call or text to say goodnight, but it stayed silent, and when I eventually climbed into bed, I found myself imagining all the different ways Diane was keeping him too occupied to call.