Anjali’s POV

I was tired and I wanted to go back to my room.  I started to get up towards the elevator when someone caught my attention.  I saw the back of a man with dark black hair touching the tip of his collar, about six feet tall wearing slacks and a button down shirt.  It looked like Alex.  But, that was impossible; I hadn’t told him I was here.

He turned to his side and I got a good view of his profile.  It was definitely Alex.  I knew his profile like the back of my hand.  How many times had I stared at it?  I’ve spent a lifetime looking at the profile awake and asleep, up close and from a distance.  It was definitely Alex.  He was smiling and laughing.  Here I’d spent the afternoon devastated while my husband was just a room away acting like his normal charming self.

I stared in disbelief.  And then I saw the object of his smiles and laughter.  A tall blonde woman with incredibly long legs came up to him and slipped into his arms.  She looked like a model that had just walked off a magazine cover.  He hugged her and then kissed her on the cheek.  They were chatting about something.  And moments later they both walked towards the elevator.

Even though I suspected the infidelity, seeing it, confirming it, was like a knife going through me.  He was meeting his mistress in the same hotel I was staying.  The same hotel I had asked him to take me.  Maybe that’s why he never brought me here.  Maybe this was the place he and his mistress stayed.

He must really be bored with me if he was with a blond.  I knew he had a preference for brunettes.  But, maybe that’s what a mid-life crisis does to you; it makes you want something new, a change.  He already owned a motorcycle so maybe going crazy was sleeping with a blonde.  But, on the other hand, before me he had a thing for models.  Maybe this was him missing his youth.

I sat back down in my seat from the shock of it all.  I know I wanted the truth but confirming it was so much harder than I ever imagined it would be.  I put my head in my hands so people couldn’t see me hyperventilating.  Breathe in, breathe out.  Inhale.  Exhale Om.  Inhale.  Exhale Om.  Inhale.  Exhale Om.  I needed my simple mantra of Om to get me through this.

Finally, I lowered my hands into my lap and my wedding band and engagement ring sat there staring back at me; taunting me with its sparkles.   The wedding ring and band that Alex had personally designed.  The rings were both black and white diamonds.  He had used both color diamonds long before it had become so popular. 

After we declared our love for each other, things were incredible.  Incredible dates, romantic dinners, phone calls snuck in during the work day and long nights at each other’s apartments.  I didn’t ask about marriage and he didn’t say anything about marriage, but he knew that’s what I wanted.  I trusted him and I assumed when the time was right he’d bring up the topic or he’d go directly to my parents and ask for my hand.

And Alex definitely didn’t disappoint me.  One morning after I rushed out of his apartment to get to work on time I received a phone call almost as soon as I set down at my desk.

Panting I picked up the phone, “Hello, this is Anjali Malkani.”

“Hello Anjali Malkani, you’ve just won the Publisher’s Clearing House sweepstakes and you will receive an all-inclusive paid trip to Hawaii.  You just have to go on the trip within the month and take the person you spent the night with last night.  Can you manage that? I can have the papers sent to your office this afternoon.” Alex said in his best Ed McMahon accent, which was awful. 

I laughed so hard.  “Alex, sweetheart, I love you, but please don’t ever try to impersonate anyone.  You’re awful.  I didn’t believe the call even for a second.”

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