Chapter: 32

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RYLAN

"And you came up with this? Is this what I give you a salary for, to come up with this kind of trash?" I slammed the file on my desk.
    
"Sorry Sir." The girl was almost  shaking in fear, sweat beads covering his forehead while he stood in the air conditioned room.
    
"Leave!" I gritted through my teeth and he immediately scurried out of my cabin. I massaged my forehead with my fingers. Jayce sighed and sat up straighter.
    
"Rylan , you can always go and stop Elena from leaving you." I clicked my tongue in annoyance before looking up at him.
    
"Why is this even coming up?" I asked in the most bored tone.
    
"You have been extremely moody for the past few days. Whenever I am here, I see you snapping at one or the other employee, you let go a few good clients for the pettiest of reasons and you're literally surviving just on your coffee. Your mood is getting worse than that of a pregnant lady on her period." I couldn't deny that he was right. I was in my worst mood these days but I didn't want to accept it either.
    
"Jayce please-" He didn't let me speak.
    
"And you know why all of this?" I got up from my seat and stood in front of the glass wall.
    
"Because you can't decide if you want to let go of Elena." He soundedile he was sure of whatever he was saying.
    
"I am so confused. Every moment I feel so restless, I feel like I am losing time ." This restlessness, this uncertainty was so new to me.
    
"You are losing time." I gritted my teeth, irritated that he had to spit facts on my face.
    
"Your words aren't helping me." I stated.
    
"Okay tell me something, why did you make the contract in the first place? Because you didn't want to let a woman in your life, because you just needed a wife on papers for the will, because you didn't want her to be a constant in your life, right?" I nodded.
    
"Yes, I didn't even know her at that time."
    
"Do you trust her now?" I didn't know the answer to this question. Everything about her said that I could trust her but paranoia was a bitch.
    
"I want to." I mumbled.
    
"Do you feel that she would want to hurt Ava ever?" I shook my head at that. I have never seen her do anything to hurt Ava’s feelings. If anything she has been a dotting guardian to her.
    
"Do you want her in your life or not?" This was the question I was dreading. This was where I was lost.
    
"I don't fucking know that!" I shouted in exasperation.
    
"You know it. You know the answers to all the fucking questions!" He yelled back, equally frustrated before he took a deep breath and made a calmer approach.
    
"Tell me can you imagine anyone else in her place? Try to see your future without her in it. Can you imagine her not being with you, in your life?" I couldn't. I don't know when she had become an important part of my life and now I didn't want her to leave it. How could someone I have known for a little over a year gain that much control over me?
    
"I can't." I whispered. It was almost painful.
    
"Then tell her that. Tell her you want another chance at your marriage, tell her you want to start afresh." Jayce said with a mixed expression of happiness and hope.
    
"She won't want it. I have hurt her. I fucked up." I ran my hands through my hair in frustration. She would probably kick my confused arse to the curbs and make a run for her future.
    
"You can always try. "

ELENA

For the last time I looked at the envelope in my hand. I had to do this. For my own sake. I forced a breath out before knocking on the door to Rylan's cabin.
    
"Come in." I heard his gruff voice. Twisting the knob, I entered. He was sitting in front of his laptop with eyes shut, leaning back. Walking closer I took some time to stare at him. He looked tired, overworked. There were dark patches under his eyes, his hair messier than usual like he had run his hands through his hair a number of times but he still managed to look hot. He opened his eyes and as soon as they met mine he sat up straight in his chair.
    
"Elena." He cleared his throat. He was acting very weird but then I didn't hope that I would understand him well at all.
    
"I wanted to speak to you but you came here to say something I guess." I nodded and forwarded the envelope to him. He furrowed his eyebrows in confusion.
    
"What is this?" He asked, eyeing the envelope in his hand.
    
"My resignation." His head immediately snapped towards me .
    
“Why would you resign?”
    
“I don’t want this job. You have already covered the hospital expenses for my Dad. I don’t need—”
    
"You can’t." Rylan cut my explanation off.
    
"Sorry?" He put the envelope down before looking up at me.
    
“It was in the contract that you get a job at Parker Enterprises. You can’t just resign like that.” I stared at him, trying to make sense of what he said. He couldn’t mean that I was legally obliged to work here which I wasn’t.
    
“The contract binds you to offer me a job here. But it says nothing on the lines of my compulsion to work here. I can choose not to.” I explained and witnessed his jaws clenching harder with every word I spoke. 
    
“And you’re choosing not to?” That voice, the calmness of it and the underlying promise of danger in it. I recognized it.
    
“Yes.”
    
His eye twitched. "Don't resign." I looked at him puzzled. What did he even mean? We had talked about this earlier.
    
"I don’t understand. It’s gonna happen one day. If not now after we divorce. Then—"  As if my words had snapped the loose thread of control Ryaln was hanging on to, he suddenly got mad.
    
"I heard you! Can you stop repeating the same thing?" He shot out of his seat and glared at me.
    
"What's wrong with you?" He clenched his eyes shut and took in a deep breath to calm down.
    
"Elena, don't resign.” He exhaled. “We don't need to divorce." I blinked a few times, his words refusing to register in my mind.
    
"Is this some kind of joke? If yes then it isn't funny." He shook his head.
    
"I am not joking, Love." He came and stood in front of me, too close for my liking. That damn name, couldn’t be a more inappropriate time.
    
"Then what are the fuck are you even saying?" I looked at him incredulously.
    
“This contract—I—I don’t want this divorce.” Rylan clenched his jaw at frustration while I stood stupefied for a second before letting out a humorless chuckle.
    
"You don't want to!" Nodding, I repeated after him. "Do you ever wonder how it’s always about what you want?" Clenching my teeth, deep breaths, nothing helped. The anger steadily rose in me. "You want to sign a contract, you want to divorce after a year, you don't want me to work anywhere else, you want us to live like strangers under the same roof and now you want to continue with this marriage, you want to annul this contract. Do you even think about what the other person wants?"
    
I was breathless from the rant. Hurt flashed in his eyes, before he masked them. A reflex probably, closing off emotions like that.

"You want to get this divorce? You don't want to do anything with this marriage? With me?” It was as if saying these words aloud pained him.
    
"Does it matter?" Now that the question was out, I wasn’t sure if I wanted the answer to it. It would break my heart a little more when he would ritualistically say that “It doesn’t”.
    
"It does." I wasn’t expecting this. Not now. He matched up the level of my stare. I pressed my lips against each other, trying to control the frustration within me.
    
"I am so done with all this shit!" I spat and turned around to leave.
    
"Elena." I heard him before I closed the door behind me. He too walked out of his cabin and followed close behind.
    
"Elena, wait!" I didn't. I could feel every employee's gaze on us which would have normally embarrassed me but at that time I was too mad to care for the office gossip.
    
He eventually caught up to me. "Wait, damn it!" Rylan grabbed me by my hand and spun me around. I glared at him but he didn't back off.
    
"Everyone's enjoying the show." There was pin drop silence. The whole floor had stopped working and was looking at us.
    
"Let's talk calmly, please." His tone was measured but his eyes were pleading.
    
"Leave my hand if you don't want me to shout and create a scene here." I gritted out and we were locked in a staring contest. Public humiliation could take a back seat at the moment. He reluctantly loosened his grip but I heard his footsteps behind me as I strode out of the office.
    
"Rylan’s place." I asked Benjamin once I got in the car.
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