“That’s a fantastic idea! One last pre exam party before we exile ourselves on our study break!” Simmi said enthusiastically.
I on the other hand was no where near enthused.
“ I just hate how Stanford and Martha just sprung this on me and just assumed that I would plan something for Phillip’s birthday. His mother always does it so I don’t see why she cant do it this year, you know, just give her another reason to hate me. But apparently its still part of my duties as his wife...”
“ why are you so bothered what his mother thinks of you?”
“ I don’t. I just have to make the next few years as pleasant as possible, if , that’s even possible.”
“ when are you going to give the guy a break?”
“ when hell freezes over then when.” I answered her angrily. “ it’s just so close to exams. And besides, I don't want anything to do with him.”
“ uh huh.. “ Simmi said rolling her eyes.
“ oh don’t do that!”
“ do what?”
“ get all judgmental eye rollie on me and whose side are you on anyway?.”
“ you want him, just admit it. I don’t see why you don’t just make up with him! I mean he took you on a picnic and went down on you in the woods and you were riding cloud 9 for days, imagine how he’s going to make things up to you this time!” she said with a suggestive wink. ‘don’t tell me you haven't been missing it. Besides. He’s called me. ”
“He called you? What the fuck for?”
“For you, you moron! He’s practically begged me for help to at least get you to stop ignoring him and talk to him. He’s desperate you know. In a bad way.’
“ Only desperate because he didn’t get what he wanted from me!....oh would you shut up about that idiot! I regret every minute …no every second I let me touch me!”
“ lair lair pants on fire. Man you are so sexually repressed and moody! “
“ Am not!” I cried out and stuck my tongue out at her. It was childish but she was probably right….but only just a tiny bit.
“ so anyway, what about this birthday party?”
“ well his mum usually plans a formal dinner with all the big wigs at some fancy hotel or venue but if I were to plan something we wouldn’t have time. Its literally next weekend!”
“yeah that’s his mum, what are you gonna do? Flash shit like that really isn’t our style, and yes, I am totally help you plan this and I am totally crashing your wardrobe.” Simmi said pushing around the leaves in her salad. “ man I don't know how people eat this shit.’ She said screwing up her face.
“ well if you lay off the samosas and ice cream and stop emotionally eating you wont need to go on a diet to fit your graduation dress!” I chided her. Food had been her comfort since her breakup and it was starting to show.
It had been so hard, the first night I spent back in the spare room I had cried myself to sleep, walking up In the dark almost wanting to find him next to me.
I so desperately wanted someone just to hold me and make this pain go away. But not him.
It was awkward the next day. I ate breakfast quietly in the kitchen, not even saying anything to Martha about the overcooked poached eggs. The past couple of days were hard on everyone. Martha fussed that I should stay home and rest but I couldnt stay, I needed to get away for a while.
I barely looked at him when I got into the car, although I could tell he had been drinking or up late – or both.
I pulled my hand away when he tried to grab it and shut him down as soon as he tried to speak, and when Stanford dropped me off to uni, I knocked in his window and told him that I would be staying at Simmis for the night.
But even at Simmi’s, as her mum fussed over us, and as we ate out of massive tubs of ice cream and I cried my guts out, my mind was always on him. Simmi’s mum thought it was just a marital spat, how do you explain to someone that you had just broken up with your husband?
And what was worse, because of a piece of paper you couldn’t leave.
And after a few hours I wanted to go home. But not the home I had with my parents, home, the home I had with Philip. I wanted my bed, my room, the place I had gotten used to over the past few months.
My parents, what would they say? Mumma would be devastated, she had been so happy when I told her that Phillip and I were giving things a chance – I had to, that almost kiss at Diwali pretty much gave it away.
And Papa, he still wasn’t right from his heart attack, and it was months later, I couldn’t do anything to stress him further, they were struggling with the hotel with me being gone, but being the proud Indian parents they but they wouldn’t admit to it.
I cursed myself for the thousanth time for being born a girl, why was it so hard for them to ask for my help? Sure I was married now but what difference did that make? I had tried, asked them so many times to let me help them, but each time they turned me down.
The next afternoon I made sure I sat in the front passengers seat, giving Phillip the silent treatment and ignoring the beautiful bouquet of orchids next to him and the plastic bag from my favorite takeaway, even though the whole ride home my stomach grumbled and the car smelled like masala dosas.
Every time he tried to apologize, to talk to me I walked away. I was amazed. It was a bloody big house and yet no matter where I hid, he managed to find me so I ended up just coming home from uni and going straight back to my room.
I would wake up in the middle of the night, from nightmares or in tears, reaching out for him, where his should have been, wishing for his warmth, his touch, and finding only an empty bed and cold sheets.
And I would remember.
I remembered then, her in his lap, the lipstick on his collar.
I became an insomniac, unable or not wanting to go to sleep and when I couldn’t sleep I spent hours in my books, reading as much as I could to keep my mind off him, sometimes spending hours just aimlessly flicking though the pages.
I didn’t need to though. I had aced every test, assignment, essay and exam this year. I was guaranteed to pass.
I had to.
I needed something to focus on or my heartbreak would have eaten me through me and plunged me into depression.
My first love, the man I never wanted but had fallen in love with, who I had spent hours fantasizing about having a future with, had tossed my heart into the mud and kicked me in the guts by cheating on me.
And to top it all off, on the day he had some ‘ big announcement’.
It had taken all of my willpower not to go running to him in a crying mess, to beg and plead and find out why he had done that to me. The thought occurred to me that I could get over this, forgive him and we could go back to the way things were.
But it wouldn’t, it never would, and I would always have that doubt at the back of my mind that he would never be faithful.
And I knew that would eat away at me.
Simmi’s voice brought back to the world.
“ Oh come on I can see the cogs in your brain turning, you've been in party planner mode the minute you opened your mouth! What have you got planned?”
“ well……now that you're helping me…”
“ what’s your budget?”
“ about $500 per person for about 150 people.”
“ shut up! No way!!”
I grinned. “ yeah I nearly fell out of my chair when Stanford told me."
“ woah 75k for a party! You better be doing something good.”
“ you bet, I am planning something to rock and shock!”
YOU ARE READING
An Arranged AffairRomance
To repay the debt owed by her parents, Victoria, a young Indian girl born to immigrant parents, is forced into an arranged marriage to the only son of the weathy Malholtra family. Unable to see past her familys betrayal she makes a plan to make her...