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If you had missed the previous chapters of the story, this is for you: Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3
She drove back home with a box of chocolates and a Chinese take away as soon as she could. Larson had let her go after he conveyed to her about the promotion. She gobbled the Manchurian and washed it down with a can of cola with a magazine by her side. The magazine contained a svelte model holding a glamorous leather bag brand named ‘Louis Vuitton’ in its cover page and this was followed by the best collection of bags and shoes in the country in the pages that followed.
Maureen had her eyes stuck to the glittering staccatos, boots and the handsome duffels worshipped by the white and skinny models. She had already decided to treat herself with the raise of pay she was going to get. It was a significant day in her career and she had no plans of messing it up.
It was late at night and she had been gagging on the magazine, she had been reading, in an uncomfortable posture. The doorbell rang and she woke up with a start. The keys were inserted and the door was banged open. There stood Steve who had accustomed to boredom and monotony in life. As she stood there in front of him he said, “it has been days since I last saw you.”
“I’m sorry Steve. I was a bit held up at work. I’m really very sorry”, she said with guilt seeping in her voice. “So you had your dinner?” she asked. “No. No I didn’t. I’m sorry, I was in a fit of rage when you called. I wasn’t able to respond properly. So do you have something in store for me?” “Chocolates? Would chocolates help?” She asked with a grin on her face. Her heart had gone light as she had noticed the gap dim between them in the conversation they had had at present.
“Anything, my dear wife…” he said and embraced her with a wide but tired grin. She embraced him slowly, mustering up all the passion she had for him inside her heart. She let tears roll down and hugged him with warmth and love to which he reciprocated back. And suddenly it came out from her “I am promoted! I am promoted as a sales manager.”
Steve loosened his grip over her and glanced at her with shock and apprehension. His face had changed from showing love to expressing fear. Maureen tightened her grip on him. She looked at him with confused eyes and asked “What is the matter Steve? Have I said something wrong?” “Oh. That’s nothing Mau. I..I was about to suggest something to you. But…” he nodded his head like he had dismissed an idea that sprung up in him. “What is it Steve? What did you want to suggest?” she asked.
“Oh. Forget it… That’s nothing.” He said with an embarrassed look on his face. “No Steve, there is something that is bothering you. Please spit it out!” “Can you please leave it? I would not like to talk about it. Okay?” he said his voice raising.
“You’ve been quite indifferent with me for the past few weeks, you never wake me up with a kiss like before and you never even talk much. What is happening Steve? What is happening between us?” She asked, her eyes reddening with tears.
“Please stop crying, okay? It’s you…” his sentence hung in mid-air while he threw his bag on the couch and left to the bed room. “What is it about me STEVE? What is it? You’re supposed to be HAPPY!” her tone had gone to a squeal.
Steve hurried over to the crowded entrance of wing’s café bar. He found that Maureen hadn’t arrived yet so he ordered a sandwich and munched away to pass the time. He was in intense thought as to what might be the reason for her getting so upset. After a brief period of time, he saw the similar face, but which was reddened and tear strewn, her eyes were red and bulged and his favourite smile of her was absent.
He rushed towards her in concern while she dropped her bag on the couch and sat over. “What is the matter, Mau? Why did you cry over the phone?” he asked. She attempted to tell something but was speechless and looked astray.
“M… My..” she tried her best to speak out but was unable to, instead she broke out with tears pounding over. “Please don’t cry… Please speak out. Mau!! You know I’m there for you. Please share whatever is troubling you with me!” he exclaimed. By this time, people at the café started noticing the problem and there were staring eyes all around.
“Come on Mau… Please come out” he told and led her away from the bustling café. They went back to the snow strewn park with a few kids playing and laughing at tantrums. They took two swings and Maureen started swaying away making long lines over the snow while brushing her boots on them.
She was looking down at snowy surface with her hair flowing down as graciously as ever. Her tears trickled down along with it, wetting the snow. Steve thought it best to give her time to speak, so he did not ask her anything except look at her with concern in his eyes.
A few minutes passed and Maureen had been drained of tears and she decided to look up at him. He slowly voiced, “Tell me Mau.”
“My mother had met with an accident… She… she is very serious. Dad’s with her.” She told as tears welled up her eyes and her tone dampened. “what are you doing here Maureen? Go right now. Just pack your bags and visit your mom!” he told with shock. “I… I’m too scared Steve. I don’t want to see her in a state like that. I..I could never bare to see her that way, I’ll die.” She broke down and wept like a deer struck by the hunter’s arrow.
Steve rushed towards her side and embraced her to make her warm. “Mau… Mau.. Listen. It is very important that you go and visit your mom, whatever state she is in. You are her daughter. You’ll have to go and take care of her!” he told. “If you’re scared to go and see her alone, I’ll come with you…” said he. Maureen hugged him more tightly, her tears drenching his shirt. “Get up Maureen, pack your bags. I’ll look out for air tickets to
George town in an online website.
“Are you ready to miss classes just for me Steve?” she asked with a slight smile on her face. “I’m ready to miss my whole life for you, dear Mau. Classes?” he said with mockery. Maureen smiled broadly and kissed him with intense love while Steve passionately returned the kiss. It was Steve to break free of the kiss first. “Mau, this is not the time. Hurry and pack up.” He told.
Read CHAPTER 5