Chapter 40: Ready When You Are

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I didn't know how to feel. It had been a perfect night before her ex showed up and seeing him was the last thing I expected. I looked over at Joy, she hadn't said anything since getting in the car and she still sat with her eyes closed as I drove.

If I wondered where she stood before when it came to me, the fact that she left with me and not him let me know that she was serious about the things that she was telling me. She was done with her ex and was sincerely trying to see where things went with me. The thing she left out in all of our talks was the fact that her ex wanted to get back with her. She told me that he was just as done with the marriage as she was, from what I just witnessed, he didn't appear done and he still wanted her. Why else would he go to the extreme of following us on our date?

The moment we pulled into my garage, she jumped out of the car and slammed my door without waiting on me. I was confused and got out just as anxious as she was acting. I walked around the back of the car and she walked past me and towards the other closed garage door where her car was parked.

"Open the door so I can get my car," she said not even looking at me.

"I'm confused," I said shaking my head. "Are you mad at me? What the hell did I do?"

"Just open the door so I can get my car," she repeated still not looking at me.

"Not until you tell me what you're mad at me about," I repeated.

"You've seen Rashad at the gym? You've played ball against him and you never thought to tell me that?" She asked looking at me with disgust. "Don't you think that is something I should know?"

"And what were you going to do with that information if I did tell you?"

"That's not the point, the point is you knew who he was and you've been seeing him around all this time and never thought that would be information I should know."

"No, I didn't," I said. "I thought telling you would upset you so I didn't say anything."

"When I asked you to leave back there, why didn't you just get in the car?" She asked. "Yes, he was being an asshole but you didn't have to feed into it. What we're going though has nothing to do with you."

"It does have something to do with me," I argued.

"No it doesn't," she said shaking her head. "Whether you like it or not, I am still married. I am still legally wearing his name and I will be for at least the next ten months."

"As long as I'm with you it's my business!" I shot back. "And while you're waiting on the divorce, it doesn't mean he has the right to follow you around and tell you what to do."

"You're right, it doesn't, but I need to take care of it, not you," she pointed at my chest.

"He came for me," I defended. "I wasn't about to sit back and let him do or say anything to you, I don't give a damn who he is."

"All I asked you to do was get in the car, I didn't need either of you fighting or making a scene," she said and then placed both of her hands over her face as if she was completely stressed out over the situation. "Open the door so that I can get my car, I just wanna go home."

"Come inside, you don't need to go anywhere like this," I noted how shaky she was acting.

"I don't want to go inside, I want to go home," she said.

"Joy, please just come inside for a little bit until you at least calm down," I tried to plead with her.

"Either you open the door so I can get my car or I'll call somebody to come get me," she threatened. When I realize how serious she was, I went over to the door and put the code in and as it opened I stood off to the side.

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