Saturday, March 31st 2007
Sarah hid behind the window as she watched her husband wave for a cab three stories below. A warm tear rolled down her face as she cuddled Jacob in her arms. Behind her, Noah was sitting in his crib alone. The little boy's dark brown eyes were wet.
They had gotten into it again. This time, it was about as petty as the arguments came.
The morning had started off to a late start. Since they each had the day off, both had slept late. The boys were getting older and beginning to sleep later on their own. That morning the couple had been awoken by the twins' cries at nine in the morning.
After getting the boys dressed, Sarah had insisted on cooking the family breakfast. She had gone to the kitchen and cooked up some home-made oatmeal. It was her grandmother's recipe, and oatmeal was the boys' favorite breakfast.
The boys sure had enjoyed their breakfast, though they had missed their mouths on many occasions. Both boys were covered from head to toe in oatmeal.
"I'll give the boys a bath," Matt had insisted earnestly. "Ruthie's flight won't be in until eleven. We have an hour.
Sarah had shaken her head. "No, that's fine. I'll take care of them." She had grabbed both of the messy boys and started to walk toward the bathroom.
Matt's face plastered with confusion. "Sarah, you're with them much more than I am. I need to spend some quality time with my boys. I don't understand why you're trying to hog them." He reached over and snatched Jacob from her arms.
Sarah's throat burned, wishing she could tell him the truth. "I'm their mother. I gave birth to them, I'll give them a bath," she firmly told him, setting Jacob down and taking Noah back.
The argument had lasted for another thirty-five minutes, and it had ended with Matt leaving with bloodshot eyes. He had no idea how it pained her to see him hurt so badly. If only she could tell him the truth, then maybe it wouldn't be so hard.
No, it would be harder, and she knew that. He couldn't know the truth. It was better end like this. It would save him the pain of telling his family the horrible possible fact. The fact would destroy his parents, and with Eric's bad heart, it could be literally devastating. Sarah didn't want to be the cause for that.
She should have ended it from the beginning, before she and Matt returned for Simon's wedding. Sarah had intended for it to be over by then. She had done everything in her power to get Matt to abandon her, but he wouldn't. No matter what she said, and no matter what she did, he would always insist everything would be all right.
Matt had wanted to tell his parents about the baby right away when she had told him she was expecting, but she had insisted that they wait to tell them in person. She knew that would buy her some time. She should have realized that Matt would never abandon his own sons. When she looked back on it all, she regretted telling him. She could have just left. It wasn't like had never "up and left" before without explaining. Somehow this was different. She hadn't been pregnant at the time.
Jacob's head lay on her shoulder, and she looked into his chocolate brown eyes. All her co-workers insisted they were splitting images of Matt's, but Sarah feared otherwise. When she looked into her son's eyes, she didn't see Matt's eyes, she saw someone else's. The boys shared her eye color, which happened to be the same as her husband's.
It didn't have to be this way, she knew. But it was, and there was no changing that. She had looked at the calendar time and time again, knowing in her heart when she thought the twins' real conception date was.
The leaves fell outside on that Thursday evening. She had just gotten home from an eight-hour shift and was absolutely exhausted. After taking her jacket off, she meandered to the kitchen to brew a warm pot of hot chocolate.
Before she could turn on the hot chocolate maker, the door cracked open. Anxiously, she turned around and a familiar face appeared. He too looked exhausted.
She smiled lovingly toward her husband who she had not spoken to in two days. Between class and working double hours at the hospital, Matt was overworked.
"Hey, honey," she wrapped her arms around him and gave him a peck on the lips. "It's so nice to see you. I've missed you."
He smiled weakly. "I've missed you too."
"So, how long are you off for?" she asked, moving toward the hot chocolate machine again. Sometimes it bothered her not knowing her own husband's work schedule, but she figured that she was going to have to get used to it. Going into the profession he was going into, he would have to go in at ungodly hours to deliver babies, and she knew it. She had known it when she married him.
"Actually…" Matt trailed slowly. "…I only came home to let you know that I'm going to Glen Oak for the weekend. I talked to Lucy on the phone earlier, and I get the feeling that something is up. She didn't say what, but I can't help myself…"
Sarah's heart dropped and she found herself disappointed, yet curious at the same time. Lucy had to have said something fairly big in order for Matt to go rushing back to Glen Oak so instantly, especially when Sarah had barely seen her husband over the course of the last months. Sure, he would run back to Glen Oak for his sister, but he wouldn't spend a weekend with her.
"What did Lucy say?" Sarah inquired.
Matt shook her head. "It's probably nothing, but I can't help but pry. That's what big brothers are for." He winked, not that she would know. She had never had a sibling to pry into her life, though sometimes she wished she had.
"Oh, really; then how I do know you're not just going back for another reason? You sure went to Glen Oak an awful lot last year. If I didn't know better – or at least I hope I know better, I'd say you're seeing Heather again."
Matt's jaw dropped to the floor. "No! I don't know how you could think that, Sarah! I haven't even spoken to Heather in two years. Sarah, I love you, and you know that…I thought you knew that. I haven't gone back to Glen Oak in months. Really, I miss my family…and I want to make sure that everyone is alright."
She took a deep breath and nodded. "I know. I'm sorry for the accusation, Matt. You're right. If I had so many little siblings I'd want to go home more often, too. Besides, my parents come up here more than yours."
Matt shook his head. "My dad's only been here once."
"I know," Sarah said. "You have every right to go. I'll miss you, though." She wrapped his arms around him again and pressed her lips against his lips. The warmth from his body transferred to her chilled skin. Her heart fluttered, realizing it was going to be another lonely weekend. She didn't want to complain; but it wasn't her fault that she desired to have just one weekend with him alone. They hadn't had that in ages, even though he hadn't gone back to Glen Oak since the previous spring. If he wasn't working, he was in class. All he had done all summer long was work.
She released herself from him, and watched him go into the bedroom to change his clothes and grab the materials he needed. In the meantime, she continued to prepare her hot chocolate. By the time it was done, Matt had walked out. He had changed from his hospital scrubs into blue jeans and a brown sweater. He held his musty suitcase in his hands.
Forcing herself to smile, she looked toward him. He set down the suitcase for a moment and kissed her one last time. "I'll see you Sunday, all right? I love you."
"I love you too," she whispered hoarsely. He turned around and picked up his suitcase again. One minute later, he disappeared through the door.
After he was gone, she sat at their small dining room table alone. It was circular and it only had two seats. They didn't have company over often, so they didn't need a ton of room. The apartment was small, but it was cozy; and it worked for them.
When her mug was empty, she found herself sitting at the desk. She knew very well where Matt kept his contact list, in the bottom drawer. Slowly, she pulled the small booklet out and started flipping through it. His list began with family; then it moved onto colleagues, then high school friends, and finally, ex-girlfriends.
Sarah had been ultimately shocked when she had seen he kept a list of his ex-girlfriends' phone numbers. She hadn't discovered it until a year after they were married. That had been the cause of the first fight, and the reason she had left him that winter season. She had proclaimed if he still had his ex-girlfriends' phone numbers, then he clearly wasn't over them.
After all, Sarah had torn up all of her ex-boyfriends' phone numbers. Then again, she hadn't exactly ended on good terms with any of them. For the most part, Matt explained to her, that he had ended on good terms with all of his former girlfriends. Sometimes, though, Sarah wasn't sure if that was a good thing or a bad thing. He never went into great detail about his former relationships, which she couldn't blame him. After all, she hadn't told him everything about her previous relationships.
Her finger pressed over Heather's name and phone number. Next to it was marked the word "cell." Immediately Sarah recognized the area code as a New York area code. Suddenly, she realized that Heather was in New York. She swallowed and wondered if that was the reason Matt had not been going home often. Maybe that was the reason he had been working so often. What if he had been lying to her?
The "what ifs" killed her. What kind of wife doubted her husband so heavily? The answer to that question was a woman who didn't trust her husband.
And after what had happened two years ago, she couldn't help but question her husband's activity outside of their apartment.
She was panting cold sweat. Her fingers trembled, grabbing her cell phone. Suddenly, her fingers hovered over the keys of her phone, slowly dialing. Her head spun.
Her hand lifted the phone up to her ear, pressing it tightly to her ear, so she could hear the phone begin to ring. Sarah felt her face begin to burn. What was she doing?
"Hello, you've reached Heather Cain. I'm not available right now. Please leave a message and I'll get back to you as soon as I can," the voice entered Sarah's ears.
Swallowing, Sarah clicked the end button. She glanced toward the list again and flipped the page to Matt's family. In front of her lay Lucy's phone number. Again, Sarah found herself dialing. She listened to the rings, hoping for Lucy to pick up.
"Hello, Sarah?" Lucy's high-pitched voice came through the receiver.
"Hey, Lucy, how are you?" Sarah smiled to herself, knowing she was about to get to the bottom of it all.
"I'm doing all right. Savannah's growing so quickly, but she keeps me busy. How are you?" Lucy asked, sounding excited to hear from Sarah. Lucy added, "I talked to Matt earlier today and he seemed pretty stressed."
Sarah sighed. "Yeah, he's been pretty busy. We both have. Actually, that's why I was calling…were you aware that Matt is on his way to Glen Oak now?"
"He's what!" Lucy gasped. "No, no I didn't."
"He said that he thinks there's something going on there. Is there?" Sarah asked.
"No, there's nothing at all!" Lucy insisted. "At least there's nothing going on that applies to him. I don't see any reason for him to be rushing down here."
"So you didn't say anything to him that would make him think that something is wrong, so he'd come rushing home?" Sarah interrogated.
There was a pause, and finally Lucy said, "No. Not that I can recall. I honestly don't know why he's coming here. There's no reason he should be, unless of course he's coming just to visit…but he really said that something is wrong?"
"Yes, that's what he told me," Sarah said, suddenly she felt a tear roll down her face. "That's what he said."
"I'm sorry, Sarah, but I don't know what he's talking about," Lucy said.
"Luce," Sarah whispered, shivering a bit. "You don't think…you don't think he'd have an affair, do you? I mean…remember what he did two years ago?"
She heard Lucy gasp through the line. "No, not at all; I don't think he'd cheat on you, Sarah—I mean, I know what happened two years ago, yes. But, Sarah, Matt loves you. There's no denying that."
"Right," Sarah whispered. "He loves me."
"I'm sure he has a reason for coming here, but it can't possibly be that."
"Right, well, Luce, thanks. I'll let you go, bye," Sarah whispered.
"Take care, Sarah. I'll let you know if I hear anything about Matt's being here, all right."
"Yeah, thank you." She ended the call and stared at the wall. Matt had lied to her, and she knew it. He had only lied to her once before, and she had eventually concluded that he hadn't really lied to her. She had just blown it out of proportion, or at least that was what she had thought.
She was beginning to question that thought.
Almost instantly after she set her cell phone on the counter, she heard her phone vibrate. Anxiously, she grabbed the phone and read "Incoming phone call from Carlos."
Carlos? She thought to herself. She hadn't heard from Carlos in months. They had talked a few times after he and Mary had broken up. It had been hard on him, and he had needed someone to talk to. Matt had give him a hard time, so Carlos had called Sarah a few times. Over that small elapsed time, she and Carlos had developed a close relationship.
Then they drifted apart. Carlos had taken Charlie to Puerto Rico; at least that was the last Sarah had heard.
"Hello?" she answered her phone call.
"Hey, Sarah…how are you doing? It has been awhile." Carlos's Hispanic accent trembled through the phone receiver.
"I've been better," Sarah replied bluntly. "Yourself? You are right, it's been awhile."
"Same here, I've been better. Say, I'm in New York…it's a long story, but I was wondering if we could get together…I need somebody to talk to, and I don't think Matt would be the best person to talk to about this…yes, it's about Mary," Carlos stuttered.
"Well, Matt's on a flight to Glen Oak right now, so you could come over here if you want. I highly doubt he'd mind." Of course he wouldn't mind, Sarah told herself. He's run off with Heather, so Sarah thought she was highly obligated to have her husband's former brother-in-law over.
"Great, well, I'm about five minutes away. I'll be there soon." The line went dead.
She glanced around the small apartment, taking note the cluttered. It wasn't as bad as it had been in the past. With the two of them being at work all of the time, it was hard to 'keep house.' Cleaning the apartment was Sarah's least priority.
Quickly she shoved some of the dirty laundry on the floor into the closet. She doubted that Carlos would really care how clean their apartment was. He'd understand.
Minutes later there was a knock on the door. "That was fast," she murmured to herself, walking toward the door. She turned the handle, opening the door.
A tall, Hispanic familiar face stood in front of her. His dazzling green eyes gazed toward her. Though, he was frowning. Sarah glanced around looking for a little figure.
"Where's Charlie?" she questioned.
"Back in Puerto Rico with his grandparents," Carlos answered. "I came to New York by myself…by request."
She shifted eyebrows up. "By request?"
Carlos let himself in and took a seat on the couch. "Sarah, Mary wants to get back together…she wants to return and be a mother to Charlie, and she wants us to get re-married."
Sarah laughed. "Well, it sounds like she's come to her senses, doesn't it? Matt always said she would." Carlos's face remained grimaced. "That's good…isn't it…? But why did she want to meet you in New York?"
"I wondered the same thing," Carlos murmured. "I didn't get my answer until I saw her today…she's returned to school. Apparently she's been taking online classes at Columbia-Green Community College. She's getting an associate degree in education, and she'll be graduating this May. Currently she's in New York because she had a few classes she had to take on campus in order to graduate."
"Wow," Sarah lifted her dark eyebrows. "It sounds like she's really getting her life on track."
Carlos shook his head. "I just don't know…I don't know if I should give her another chance. I mean, hasn't she run her chances all out?"
Sarah didn't know what to say to that. Their eyes met, and she began feeling agitated.
What happen next, Sarah tried to block out of her memories. But it was still there, underneath it all. At the time, she hadn't regretted it. It wasn't until the next day it all sunk in deeply.
Lucy had called her, informing her why Matt had come to Glen Oak. There had been one big misunderstanding, and Lucy sincerely apologized.
"I'm so sorry, Sarah. I didn't even think about what I was saying to him. Had I known telling him I planned on visiting Simon was going to force him to come to California, I certainly wouldn't have mentioned it. I really didn't mean to cause such confusion."
"So, Simon's all right?" Sarah inquired, remembering the whole spiel not even a year prior.
"Simon is just fine. I don't particularly approve of his current girlfriend, but otherwise, he's fine," Lucy assured her.
"Well, that's good."
She had felt like a fool. What had she done? That Sunday, Matt had returned home. They had barely spoken a word for a week, and then one day he came home from work, saying that he had the weekend off.
They had spent the weekend together, and that was when the twins were believed to be conceived.
Matt would never abandon his own children. He was too good of man for that. But if he found out that they weren't his, then it would be easier on him. Sarah had been working up the courage to tell him, but she just couldn't. Instead, she only made it worse by causing foolish, petty arguments.
She saw the way he looked at the boys. He loved them as much as she did.
She tried to make it seem as if she didn't love him anymore, so he would go away. Faking to fall out of love with someone was hard, especially when your love for that person continued to throb on harder than ever before.
Now, with Ruthie in New York, Sarah knew that she wouldn't be able to confess her secret to Matt. Ruthie had already held too many secrets for the two during their marriage. Somehow, it felt like their entire marriage had been secret. Well, it had been for four years. It had begun a secret, and it was ending with secrets.
Another one that hasn't been updated in months! Please review!