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A baby boy. James hadn’t even bothered to tell her about the child and the gender. She raised her brow at the woman and nodded, rolling the wine around in her mouth as she nodded. “Right,” she said. “That’s so exciting. I’m glad everything is working out.” Gianna smiled as she watched the female with a smile.
“Just good?” she asked her. Gianna had finished the wine before the waitress had returned with their meals. Gianna was trying to think of what to say, not sure if she wanted to admit to the affair she had with the male – James, Lexia’s husband. She could tell her now and have the woman leave him, allowing James to come back to her as he would be alone.
“Everything is fine,” she had said. “Just don’t you know how hard it is with men, so hard to read them and their actions.” Gianna had poured herself another glass of wine.
“The man I was seeing is trying to leave me,” she finally admitted. “He had a wife, they’re separated.” She had lied, not finding it in her heart to give Lexia any clues. James would come back and then, she knew he would feel guilty enough to confess himself. She didn’t want to be responsible for breaking up their home, especially if James didn’t love her as he so claimed.
“I just think he’s too caught up in this woman, I don’t know – I thought he loved me, the way he held me J-John,” she cleared her throat and busied her busy mouth now with food. “He’d said he loved me. What do you think I should do? I don’t want to let him go.”
The moment she had sat down she started to look over the menu whilst also listening to Gianna talk. She could tell that something was a little off before she even admitted that she had been rattled. Lexia frowned a little. While she was still on edge about having lunch with Gianna, she wasn’t an awful human being and she did care about the fact she seemed disheveled. When the waitress came over she offered her a smile in thanks for the olives and started to eat a couple of them. Lexia had already decided what she wanted to eat but Gianna hadn’t even looked at the menu yet so she wasn’t surprised when she sent the waitress away.
[b “It’s going well! Thank you. Aside from the morning sickness and low blood pressure everything else is going well. I suppose I can tell you that we are having a little boy. We decided we didn’t need a gender reveal party.”] She was smiling with her hand over he bump then. It was something that happened naturally now whenever she spoke of their baby, a sign of her growing love for the child. When she looked back up she noticed that Gianna was smirking and her cheeks had turned red, but she didn’t know what had caused it but she didn’t have time to ask before the waitress was returning and she put in her order of carbonara and waited for Gianna to finish ordering.
Lexia wasn’t one to judge but Gianna had almost finished a bottle of wine already and she had just ordered her second. Something was definitely wrong with her. However, before she could ask if she was alright, she was prying into her relationship with James and there was that suspicion surfacing again. She was upset that James would talk to her about their relationship but wouldn’t talk to Lexia about what was going on but she had to remember that they had talked things through last night and things were on the right path. She wasn’t going to give Gianna any indication that something was or had been wrong though.
[b “Things are good, thank you for asking.”] She intentionally kept her reply short and she looked to the bottle of wine as the waitress brought her wine over. [b “Gianna, is everything alright?”]
Gianna felt a pang of jealousy in her chest, watching as Lexia had come their way and damn the woman was glowing from the pregnancy. She eagerly swallowed the glass of wine in it’s entirety, refilling it as she had asked for the bottle to left at the table. She put on a fake smile as the woman had managed to get to their table, puling out her chair to sit opposite of Gianna.
“Hello Lexia,” she said to the woman then. “Glad to be of help, even I needed a day off – was a bit rattled earlier.” It was weird that James would let Gianna have a day off on the busiest day, a day when he needed everyone of his staff, but she wouldn’t admit that it had been James who had caused the woman to be emotional.
The waitress had come over then, placing a bowl of olives in front of the menu. The blonde had grabbed her notepad from the pocket of her apron.
“Are you ladies ready to order or would you prefer a few more moments to look over the menu?”
“We need a minute, thank you.” Gianna smiled up at the woman who had nodded in understanding and walked away. Gianna had reached for her glass, taking a sip. “How’s the pregnancy going?” She inquired as she then grabbed the menu and started to look over. She had been here once with James. He had missed the doctors appointment with Lexia because he had been with her instead enjoying a nice breakfast before he had his way with the woman in his car in the alley next to the restaurant.
Gianna smirked at the memory, cheeks aflame then. The waitress had returned then to take their orders, Gianna ordering a light pasta dish and another bottle of wine. “Are you and James doing better?” She tried to cover her tracks then, “James has expressed to me that he felt like things weren’t the same lately. He seemed a bit distant, sometimes I can barely get a hold of him,” she said.
This restaurant was a nice place and she was actually rather looking forward to fulfilling her appetite here, remembering how good the food was here last time that she had eaten here and her craving for olives hadn’t subsided and she knew that she could get some as an appetiser here. She checked her appearance in the mirror and then climbed out of the car, smoothing down her dress as she started towards the restaurant, her pregnancy bump showing through the maternity dress she had chosen to wear for comfort. When she arrived at the door she was greeted by a friendly waitress.
[b “Hello, I’m meeting a friend here. I don’t know if she is here yet. Gianna?”]
[i “Ah Yes, she arrived not so long ago. I’ll take you to your table.”] Lexia smiled and followed the woman and before she arrived at the table to turned to the waitress.
[b “I know that I am not sat down yet but...could you bring some olives to the table while we wait to order.”]
The waitress chuckled and looked to her stomach. [i “Craving I assume? Not a problem at all, I’ll bring you some over. She’s just over there.”] Lexia thanked her and looked to Gianna, noting that she had already started on the wine.
[b “Gianna!”] She smiled as sat opposite her, letting out a sigh of relief. “Thank you for bringing me to lunch. I think I might have broken my back hunched over my desk otherwise.”] Although she wasn’t exactly too far into her pregnancy, she was already aching all over and she knew that was only going to get worse so she would work as much as she could now while she could stand it.
James had tried to compose himself, knowing that he didn’t have the time to think about Gianna. He had some trust in the woman and figured above all she would remain professional. She wouldn’t let this get between them, they both knew it couldn’t last long. He had been married to Lexia and he loved her, why would he further risk losing her? It was time he became the man he had promised to be for the woman who would soon be the mother of his son. How could he teach a boy to be a man when he couldn’t even practice what he preached?
James had moved form the bathroom then, greeting his staff and getting them to prepare for the lunch the Mayor would be having, a tasting of the meals he planned to serve at the event.
[center [b _]]
Gianna had read Lexia’s message through tear filled eyes, a snort befalling her as she replayed James’ words in her mind. He didn’t love her and didn’t want to continue their [I relationship]. She knew it was wrong, knew that James and Lexia were in love and married. He had a child on the way. She knew though that James needed her, a woman who had control not someone so needy and desperate like Lexia.
She started the car then, fixing herself up in the mirror before she began away from the restaurant. She couldn’t bear to be around James right now. It took the whole ride there for Gianna to think of a plan. She didn’t want James to leave her, she couldn’t bear the idea. Maybe if she got Lexia to think he was cheating on her, she could slide in. She wanted to feel the woman out though, get an idea of whether or not she even had any idea her husband was sleeping with another woman every night, of course deciding not to out herself.
Gianna had pulled up to the restaurant, a little Italian place. She got out and booked them a table, not ashamed to order herself a glass of wine. She knew it would disappoint James, but she had no intent on going back to work, so getting a bit wasted wasn’t terribly a bad idea. Maybe he’d learn to miss her when she wasn’t available and she knew whatever he was getting at home was nothing like what he could do for James. Their love making was unmatched, she was sure of it. James loved her, he was just afraid.
Lexia spent some time catching up with her mother on the phone, exchanging stories about morning sickness and random cravings while she told her of the experiences she had when she had been pregnant with her. It was nice catching up with her but she was sad that she hadn’t seen her in such a long time. She had been so caught up with her marriage to James that she had been neglecting her mother but she knew that she would understand.
[i “And how are things with James? Any better?”] She could tell that her mother was fishing for something to hold against James, always being the one to give him a hard time about how Lexia deserved more romance and attention. She wouldn’t give her the bait, especially since she didn’t want to hear her moaning about him when she went to visit next week.
[b “Things are good Mom. He came to the scan with me yesterday and he’s going to come to more of them. We have talked everything through and I really think we are going to make this work.”]
[i “Last time we spoke you said you thought that he was cheating on you.”]
[b “I know but...I was wrong. I shouldn’t have assumed that. He’s just been putting a lot into his restaurant. He has his meeting with the Mayor today and I know he’s been really worried about that so I think once he knows that’s all good he might pull back a little.”]
[i “Hmmm we’ll see.”]
[b “Alright Mom, I need to finish this jewellery and then I’m going to lunch with Gianna.”] Soon after that, she ended the phone conversation and finished some of her pieces before checking the time and sending a text to Gianna.
[i I’m just about to leave. If I get there first I will get us a table. You do the same. Looking forward to catching up with you!]
She grabbed her keys and left the house and climbed in the car and drove to the restaurant. She would be lying if she said that she wasn’t nervous about meeting Gianna. They were friendly with each other but they didn’t have much in common so she wasn’t sure what they would talking about. She pulled up soon after that.
It was hard for James to feel bad when Gianna’s actions made him feel so good he didn’t really think about the fact it wasn’t his wife servicing him. She had already captured him, immobilizing the man purely with her lips. He’d only come to his senses as he was buckling his belt, Gianna there now on her two feet with her hands adjusting the bun that had become a bit mixed up thanks to how hard James had gripped her hair during their intimate session.
“How’s that for a stress reliever?” She said with a smirk, she was heading toward the staff bathroom to start brushing her teeth. James had stared blindly before following the woman.
“Gianna, look-“ he was struggling with finding the words, not wanting to risk losing the female as not only a friend but also an employee. He needed her help in the event and if she was emotionally unstable that wouldn’t prove best for him.
“I can’t, I can’t do this anymore.” He had averted the female’s eyes, watching as she wiped her mouth clean of the remainder toothpaste.
“What do you mean?” She asked as she turned around then, her eyes desperate.
“I mean this –“ He motioned between them two feeling exceptionally guilty seeing how the woman had just been intimate with him. It was a bit of a douchebag move he felt but he hadn’t meant it to be that way. In fact he would have preferred to break things off maybe over dinner. “I can’t continue this affair, I can’t do that to Lexia.” His eyes were turned away in shame, too much of a coward to look at Gianna directly in her eyes.
“What? Why?” She had stepped forward now, her hands on his chest and he knew that this was turning into a scene which was bad as the other staff would be coming in soon to help with opening the restaurant.
“This isn’t right. I’m married and you know it. This was – the first night and all of this was a mistake.”
“A mistake? You said you loved me.” He was backed into a corner then, as he had uttered those words to the female plenty of times during them having sex.
“I care for you Gianna, I do. I just – I have a family to think of now. I can’t do this anymore.” The room fell quiet then, the woman staring up at him in shock. He could see the tears forming in her eyes before she had run off.
“Shit,” he cursed under his breath. Rubbing his eyes and forehead as he tried to relieve the tension he had.
Gianna’s hands were formulating now, still waiting on her response from Lexia. Broken hearted then, she wondered what to do – to hurt James or try to win him back?
Lexia would probably never be able to change her ways when it came to thinking about James before herself because that’s just how things had always been but she hoped that now they had cleared the air that there would be a little more balance. She needed to let him know when she needed him and he would need to be there for her because that was the only way their relationship was going to continue to work. She needed the same love and attention from him that she put into their marriage. For the first time in months she was feeling positive about everything and she was smiling despite the fact that a wave of morning sickness had threatened to ruin their morning.
Lexia chuckled, [b “Oh! You figured that out then? I promise I will text you, no matter how unimportant it seems and I will let you know next time I need something that late at night.”] She kissed his cheek once more, accepting his kiss on the forehead as his farewell to her. She followed him to the bedroom and nodded. [b “I love you too and remember that you know what you are doing! The Mayor is going to love your menu okay?”] He would be worrying about that until the meeting of course but she knew he didn’t need to worry and she knew that the Mayor would love his work, but the fact that he cared so much just told of his dedication to the restaurant.
Once she was alone she brushed her teeth and showered before changing into something comfortable. She was going to do some work in her study and then go for lunch with Gianna and she didn’t want to change so she settled on a comfortable dress and pulled her hair into a braid so that it was out of the way while she worked. She had received a text from Gianna when she moved to the bedside table to retrieve it and she replied to confirm lunch plans, agreeing to meet her at a suggested location before she moved to her study where she started to get to work on some pieces of jewellery.
After a while she opened her laptop and booked on to the craft fair she had mentioned to James and posted a few items on her social media pages before her phone started to ring.
[b “Hi Mom!”] She allowed the phone to rest between her shoulder and her ear as she tapped away on the computer.
[i “Sooooo? Are you going to tell me what you are having? A boy or a girl?”] Her tone was laced with excitement, almost as though she had been trying not to call her before now and that caused Lexia to smile some.
[b “Are you sure you don’t want it to be a surprise?”] She could hear the scoff on the end of the phone and Lexia laughed further. [b “Alright! Alright you are having a grandson.”] She had to pull the phone away from her ear when her mother’s squeals could be heard. [b “I guess you are happy?”]
[i “I never had any boys and I always wanted one.”] She could hear the emotion in her voice that told her she was starting to cry. [i “And I always hoped that one of you girls would give me a grandchild and now it’s happening! And he’s a boy!”]
Of course, even after throwing up the woman was already thinking of him, soothing any worries he had about his meeting with the mayor. He smiled down at her, kissing her forehead after she had kissed his cheek. James smoothed back loose strands of her hair, “Don’t feel like you’re taking time away from okay? Text me no matter how small and no more going out late night for olives,” he said with a chuckle, shaking his head. “Or at least let me know.” Sighing again, he moved toward the bedroom where he grabbed his keys and wallet.
“I’ll try too be back early. I love you,” James had said to the female before heading out of the house and toward their driveway where he had got into the car and began for work. He’d tried to calm his nerves then, playing with the radio before he landed on a station. Once reaching the restaurant, he did was he normally did which was to make sure the kitchen the restaurant’s floor had been tended to, no table with a napkin or set of utensils. He went through the fridge, noting anything that needed to be ordered and was glad to see that Daniel had managed to get the staff back on track.
James was going over the menu he had created when he heard the front door open, Gianna walking in, hair in a messy bun and her phone in her hand. She had texted Lexia to see if she had made up her mind about catching lunch that day. She watched James carefully, offering the male a smile as she walked over to him.
“You haven’t been responding to my texts,” she said with a pout, looking around to make sure they were alone before wrapping her arms around is neck, body flush against his own as she offered him a kiss. Of course James couldn’t help the muscle memory, locking his arms around her waist and kissing her back, though knowing he had meant for this to be no more. He finally parted their lips, leaning back against the counter so as to give them some space.
“Lexia was sick,” he partially lied and cleared his throat. “You’re here a bit early,” he mentioned with a raised brow. Gianna’s hands had trailed against his chest, a glint of wanting bright in her eyes, her teeth playing with her plump bottom.
“Oh,” she responded, hand playing with the button of his pants. “Well, I wanted to catch you. I now it’s going to be a busy day, didn’t think we’d have much time together.”
“Gianna, I want –“ his breath hitched, her hands now wrapped around him gentle strokes. She grinned and kissed him.
“You’re tense, you’re stressed. I know what you want.”
Lexia was used to the sensation of morning sickness by now but she wanted it to be over so she could actually enjoy the pregnancy. She had been to a class a couple of weeks ago, full of pregnant women all bragging about the joys of pregnancy and feeling their child move. That was the part she couldn’t wait for. She could feel flutters of movement but nothing that she could share in with James. That was what she wanted more than anything, for the two of them to share in the excitement of their son growing inside her.
Lexia was surprised to feel James move beside her and start to massage her back to help soothe her as she finished throwing up. This was a step in the right direction and even though she hated heaving, having him there with her did help her feel better. When she was finished he grabbed a towel and started to dap at her face and she couldn’t help but slump on the floor fatigued but smiling towards him as she reached out to pull the flush of the toilet.
[b “Thank you babe. I know it’s not exactly glamorous sitting here on the bathroom floor with me.”] She said with a smile as he encouraged her to see Gianna. [b “Maybe I will. I’ll send her a text.”] Lexia leaned into his hand as her brushed her hair back and she chuckled a little. [b “I understand why you are being protective and I completely understand.”] She took hold of his hand and pushed up from the floor with James’ help and the two embraced for a moment after he told he he needed to leave.
[b “I know you do, don’t worry. I’m going to be completely fine and if I’m not I promise you that I will text you okay?”] She placed his hand on her stomach and looked up at him. [b “We’ll miss you and babe, I know you are worried about your meeting with the Mayor but I promise you that they are going to love your menu! They chose your restaurant because they trust you to make the right decisions and they trust your pallet.”] She kissed his cheek then. [b “No lips! I just threw up.”]
“Sounds like a good way to start the day,” James mentioned toward the female. He knew he had a busy day ahead of him too, and having to break up with his mistress was definitely more dangerous territory than the meeting he had with the mayor to assure all items on the menu were to his liking, and finalize any other aspects of position. “That’s a smart decision though, a little more exposure would certainly lead to an increase in business.”
James looked into the mirror that sat above their dresser, running his hands through his hair, still a bit wet but manageable at this point at least.
James was distracted then by the remainder of Lexia’s statement, looking over his shoulder at the female. Just what did Gianna want to talk to her about, catch up about? It did make him feel a bit cautious and he tried not to let the nervousness show, glad at least the woman had ran toward the bathroom. He sighed out, appreciating the morning sickness as it created a distraction and allowed the male some time to regain himself. James walked over toward the female who was hunched over the toilet, spewing into the porcelain bowl. His hand ran over her back to soothe her. He’d then reached for a towel, bending beside her and holding her face in her hands. He wiped at any remnants. “Hey, maybe you should see Gianna. You know, get some fresh air. I know you don’t listen to me,” he said with a chuckle, “and I’ve been a bit too protective of you, but I don’t want you to close yourself off to friends.” James smiled, pushing a strand of the female’s hair behind her ear. He hoped Gianna wouldn’t do anything rash without thinking, not sure how Lexia would really be able to take the words – how would she react?
James kissed the woman’s forehead before releasing a sigh. [I Friends], if that was the word to use for the woman who was his mistress.
“I have to leave,” he finally admitted to her, helping the woman to a stand. He wrapped his hand around her waist, her growing belly there against his own. James kissed her cheek. “Will you be okay, while I’m gone?” James asked Lexia.
Lexia smiled towards him and pushed her hands into the bed so that she could push herself into a seated position. [b “It’s not a problem. It just means I can get an early start on some of the pieces I need to make. I’m hoping to take on a little bit more work over the next few months so I can take a little bit of a break when the little one arrives.”] She placed her hand on her stomach and caressed her bump gently. The amount of love that she already had for their little boy was almost overwhelming and after having their talk the night before, she was feeling a little happier about their relationship which made her feel less anxious about bringing a child into this world with him.
[b “So, my plan is to work and maybe do a little more advertising on the social media accounts. Annabelle said that she is going to a craft fair in a few weeks and she noticed that there were a few more stall places left. Do you think that it would be alright if I booked in? I thought it would be a good opportunity to expand my customer base and sell a few pre-made pieces.”] Lexia knew that she didn’t really need to ask his permission but she wanted him to have a say, knowing that he would be worried having her there alone all day.
She glanced up at him, noticing that he was replying to whoever had been texting him. [b “Gianna wants to take me to lunch at some point.”] A part of her wanted to see what his reaction was to that, not having all of her suspicion put to bed just yet. [b “She seemed like she wanted to catch up.”] Just then, the nausea hit her and she rose from the bed and ran to the bathroom. It had been a few days since she had experienced morning sickness and she had hoped that it passed now that she had reached the 16 week mark but apparently it was just easing off, slowly.
[b “Urgh! I fucking hate morning sickness.”] She called from the bathroom as she leaned over the toilet, heaving heavily.
James had placed his clothes on the bed, drying his hair and reaching for his phone. He frowned some at the messages, leaning down to kiss the woman on her forehead.
“Sorry,” he said. “Didn’t mean to wake you.” He had started to get dressed then, chewing on his bottom lip as he tried to figure out exactly what was the best way for him to tell Gianna he had to end the affair. Of course this was a long time coming, but he knew the quicker he did it, the easier it would be on her.
He wanted things to go back to how they were and that meant that the male had to go back to who he was. He wasn’t a cheater. He loved Lexia and he had to make more of an effort to be with her. “What’re your plans for the day?” He asked as he started to button up his shirt. He was trying to distract himself from his thoughts, but Gianna kept popping in and it didn’t help that she was messaging him consistently. James had sat on the bed, responding to her text to let her know that they would have to have a talk when he got to work.
[center [b _]]
[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/MwWj2Wy.png]] Gianna had paced her kitchen, ignoring the breakfast she had made, her tea growing cold. It wasn’t like James to ignore her messages or calls. She had finally stopped and started to eat, try to think what would be keeping the man from her. She had noticed his mind was a little all over the place, and hoped that their time together would make things easier. However, he was pulling away some. She had hoped that Lexia would take her up on her offer for lunch in order for her to get a peek into their relationship, wondering if what James had told her was true.
Her phone buzzed beside her on the marble countertop and she eagerly reached out for it, not sure how to feel about the message. Sighing out, she placed the phone on her counter, sipping the tea even though it was cold. Since her break from Mark she had felt very needy and James was the perfect man for that, handsome and always the great man in bed. There was a kindness there though, they had been together through his restaurant opening, she had been at his side much the same as his wife.
Lexia wasn’t the woman for him, the woman couldn’t match his level of intensity. She wondered if he only stayed for the child she carried. She also wondered how Lexia would feel if she had finally told her that James and her were having an affair.
Knowing she had to get to work, she stood tall and began to clean up to get ready for work.
The promise was all she needed. It was like a sigh of relief and she felt like they might finally be able to move on from whatever blip have forced itself into their marriage. She smiled happily and leaned into him. [b “We are in this together.”] She repeated, holding on to that thought as sleep began to claim her. It was a lot later than she realised and she felt a little bit guilty that she had kept him up since he had to go to work in the morning and she could start whenever she wanted.
Lexia kissed his cheek and settled back into him, falling into a sleep. It was perhaps one of the most peaceful she had in a while since they had worked through some of their problems. It made her feel stupid for not trying to talk to him about this before but at least now things would get better.
She didn’t stir when James got up to get ready for work, instead she slept soundly and with a faint smile painted up her lips. Not even the sound of the shower roused her from her sleep. However, the incessant vibration of James’ phone eventually stirred her. A child-like frown formed upon her face and she reached out for the phone, eyes still closed as she pulled the button on the side to turn off the vibration and then threw it down onto his pillow, far too tired to open her eyes yet.
It wasn’t until James came back into the room that she let him know that she was awake. [b “Your phone has not stopped going off.”] She said, a sleepy haze evident in the way that she spoke as she reached out for his phone, holding it out to him.
This was probably the closest they had been lately. The more that Lexia spoke, the worst he felt. He had abandoned her and she was finally being honest enough to let him know just exactly how she felt. She again was declining the party, only wanting him and him only to be there when she needed and he knew that if he was so concerned with making sure this child was born safely, he would need to be around more. Being around more meant that he wouldn’t be that close to Gianna, which would be a good thing.
“I promise to be around more,” he said as he kissed her lips and drew her closer, if that were even possible. “We’re in this together.” He promised again. “We should sleep.” James said with a smile, laying his head to the pillow then before falling asleep.
He awoke early in the morning, careful to pull his body away from the sleeping woman. He headed for the bathroom, checking his phone and forgetting to lock it before he headed to the shower. James had turned on the water, allowing the water to run over him. He was still a bit tired from the night’s event and the talk they had afterward. James felt a little more at ease though, glad that they had heard each other out.
He was unaware then though, of the fact that his phone was going off, buzzing with text messages from Gianna. She was sending him messages, again of herself and how excited she was to see him, hoping this time he wouldn’t decline her request to stay the night with her.
James had finished his shower, stepping out to brush his teeth and finish the rest of his morning routine. He stepped out of the bathroom, his towel wrapped around his waist and began for the closet where he could find his clothes.
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