Eight

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Silence loomed among the dining table. Neither Ines nor Alessio made a gesture to speak. One was regretting their actions for the previous night, while the other was being eaten alive by the wanting of knowing, knowing the late night actions of his dear wife. Yet as he thought about it more did he really want to know. This brought him to think about how he would stay out late countless nights. Had Ines felt how he was feeling at that moment? Lost by the oblivion that took a hold of his thoughts.

Alessio looked up from his coffee to find Ines who had already been staring at him. This was his only chance. To ask. And so he jumped the bridge.

"You didn't come home last night," he stated in him most serene tone that he was able to muster.

There was a pregnant pause before she finally responded with, "I did but you weren't awake."

Alessio's grip on the fork he was holding grew, but he let out ragged breathes to control his frustration.

"I waited for you until two in the morning, but you never showed up. I lost precious hours of sleeping worrying about your well being."

Ines felt a lump form at the bottom of her stomach. He had waited for her and she never showed up. He finally understood how it felt for her waiting for him to come, only to go to bed with the thought that he was in another woman's arms. She knew all her restless nights were caused by the pain of that knowing. She had felt foolish for waiting for a man that would never truly be hers, and that was the reason she had slept with that man last night. She was done waiting for something that would never happen. An unrealistic dream in a cruel world. She wanted something more, something in which he would just never be able to provide for her.

"You should have slept instead of keeping yourself up for me then."

"Where were you?"

"I don't have to tell you."

"Where were you?" His voice inclined a pitch higher. His knuckles had turned red from the clench he had made on his fist. Ines could tell he was getting angrier by the minute, but she didn't care.

"I was out."

"Where and with who?"

"I went to get a drink with Stella and then something made my stay longer then intended."

"And may I ask what this something was?" His tone could crack thick ice.

"No, it is none of your business." Ines slowly continued to eat her breakfast as the man in front of her began to go mad.

Alessio slammed his fist on the wooden table making the China rattle.

"I don't understand why you care so much, you never did before."

"I was worried. You could have been in danger for all I know. Next time at least send a message that you won't be coming home." He abruptly stood up and called for a maid. "Ho finito. Pulisci questo."

The maid soon started gathering up his plates. He looked at Ines one last time before leaving the dining room. He was angry at the things he thought of her doing last night. It was no doubt she had gone and slept with someone, but why was he so mad, he couldn't blame her for going out and looking for that. She had needs just like him, but he could give her those needs. She didn't have to go out and look for someone who could give them to her when he was there.

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