Chapter 14

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Nathan

Sophia had said she would only be gone an hour. It had been almost two now. Despite how uncomfortable I was with her leaving the hotel, I knew she needed fresh air. When we were married, she would always keep things bottled up and then it would all hit her at once. When she was overwhelmed, she needed time to work through the mess in her brain and that was what she was doing today. Insisting she stay here would only make things worse and the chances she would agree were slim anyways. I didn't blame her, the hotel was starting to feel much more like a prison than anything. If a prison was a 5 star hotel, I guess. At least our accommodations were better, but the effect it was having on my mental health was exhausting. The hotel was swarming with paparazzi and new channels, all wanting to extract some bit of information from us. I hated them on a whole new level because of the way they were prying to our lives. They always had, but we had tried to keep the girls out of the spotlight as much as possible. It was extremely unnerving to know they were out there waiting for some dirty detail about our 3 year old. Leaving the hotel together was out of the question without being detected, and even leaving our room was risky. The reporters were ruthless and I wouldn't put it past them to book rooms here with hopes of catching a glimpse of us and somehow busting the whole story wide open. It was sickening.

When Sophia left, I had tried to take a nap and get my mind off of everything but I couldn't have fallen asleep if my life depended on it. The second I closed my eyes, I pictured Tessa wondering where she was at this exact moment. Was she scared? Did she know we were looking for her? Were the people she was with taking care of her? Sophia had mentioned a cough, she had asthma and if they didn't know that she could have a panic attack. The not knowing was what was the most excruciating and the second I tried t rest my mind, it just filled with thoughts I would prefer not to experience. There had to be some kind of break in the case soon, there just had to be.

There was a knock on the door and I immediately jumped up, rushing for it thinking it was Sophia. When I opened it, I was shocked to see my brother.

"Hey man. " Zach said cautiously, testing the waters.

"Hey." I said moving to the side so he could come in. Of course it wouldn't be Sophia, why would she knock?

"Were you expecting someone else?" He walked a few feet inside the door and looked around the suite.

"Just Sophia. She went out about 2 hours ago." I closed the door behind him and followed him over to the couch.

"By herself?" Zach turned around wide eyed and stunned.

"No, of course not. James is with her. She just wanted some time to herself." I said, justifying it to him. I wasn't an idiot. Zach always felt like he knew best though, especially when it came to my failing relationship. I should have figured this would be no different. He always meant well but it was tough being the youngest in my family. I was always at competition with my brothers, and most of the time was failing miserably at it. If he didn't need me for my technology mind, he probably would have bought me out of Nova a long time ago, sick of my shit. Marrying Sophia was the best thing I had ever done, and then I went and screwed that up too.

"I can't imagine what she must be going through. What you guys must be going through." He corrected. "I just wanted to come by in case you wanted to talk."

"I don't know much about talking but I appreciate the company." I was the opposite of Sophia. She appreciated her alone time, enjoyed it even. To just be by herself and get her thoughts together. So many times when we were married, I would find her in a bubble bath or sitting out on the back porch sipping on wine, processing whatever was on her mind. I, on the other hand, hated to be alone. And even though I knew Zach was going to grill me on a million things happening, I was thankful to see him and for the brief distraction he would provide.

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