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Pen Your Pride


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Brad’s face darkened ominously.  ‘You did not see fit to inform me first that you’re seeking outside help to resolve our marital issues?’ he yelled.

‘What!’  Tessa blinked in confusion. 

Brad flung a copy of that tabloid’s online front page article onto the coffee table.  Stunned, Tessa cast a cursory glance at the caption: 

Blakely’s marriage on the rocks.  Heiress seeks psychologist’s help.” 

‘What the hell were you thinking airing our personal issues in such a public place?’

Tessa looked upstairs, certain one or both of the boys would come crying down the stairs, hearing their daddy’s thunderous voice.  She had not known what Mercia’s profession was.  Tessa and Mercia generally took a minute to exchange pleasantries, nothing more than that.

‘You’re wrong,’ Tessa replied, ‘and so are they.  Can we talk about this in your study?’  Tessa walked away, ignoring the page on the coffee table. 

Brad just stared incredulously at Tessa’s retreating back.  Did she think he was stupid?  Was she going to sweet talk her way out of the mess she created?  Because of her, Brad had to sit with his PR people who were pressurizing him to put out a statement in the name of damage control.  Brad had listened to them.  He never justified his private life to the public.  He was not going to start now, even if his wife decided to take their problems into the public domain.  Brad had stormed out of the meeting, saying he will sleep on it, and make a decision the following morning.  His PR team had not agreed with him.  Good thing he was the boss.  They wanted an immediate press release circulated to contain the wildfire.  Brad knew unscrupulous savage vultures were waiting for Tessa to become single again.  Well he was not done with Tessa.  She was his wife.  She would be his wife forever.  He was never letting her go, never.

Now his wife wanted the privacy of his study to attempt to soften the blow.  He was surprised she did not want to use the bedroom.  She would definitely have been more effective there.  Brad shut the door.  He shoved his hands into his pockets and glared at Tessa expectantly.

‘That was Mercia Campbell, Elli’s mom. ’ Tessa started.

‘The clinical psychologist, I know,’ Brad raised his voice impatiently. 

Why the hell didn’t I know that?  ‘The kids wanted to have drinks.’

‘So you decided you’d kill two birds with one stone and seek professional counsel?’

The picture from the article vividly flashed across Tessa’s mind.  Mercia leaning across and placing her palm over Tessa’s wrist. 

How misleading and out of context that damn picture was!

‘I was not aware my marriage was on the rocks,’ Tessa stated.

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