A week had passed and Jonathan had practically forgotten about the whole thing. He was knee deep in the acquisition of Paxton Electronics which was still not going as smoothly as he had hoped. He was handling more of the details himself that would have normally been delegated but that seemed to be the only thing that appeased Paxton's executives. As a result, he was working longer and spending less time with Jennifer. But he resolutely decided to take a long weekend with her at the cabin. It was their favorite spot for a quiet get away, peaceful, secluded, serene. It was late Thursday and he headed out bidding Deanne, his secretary, a good weekend and making her swear a solemn oath not to contact him unless it was a dire emergency. The Paxton deal was settled for the moment and could wait until Monday.
"Have a nice weekend, Mr. Hart." Deanne said, knowing how much her boss needed the time away, "And give Mrs. Hart my best."
"I will Deanne." He said with a smile and a wink, "And don't give my number out to anyone. Only you and Stanley know how to get in touch, okay?"
"Of course." She said
"See you Monday." He called as he headed to the elevator
Jonathan walked to the yellow Mercedes in his reserved spot, got in and headed out of the garage. Jennifer was at a lecture at the library at UCLA on Ancient Egypt, one of her favorite subjects and would be home later. He planned to have a nice bottle of Chateau St. Clair and bubble bath ready for both of them. Just thinking about her he could feel the tension leave his body and a smile formed on his face. He stopped at La Cachette to pick up a loaf of their famous bread to go along with the wine and that's when it happened again. He noticed a woman sitting at a table on the far side of the restaurant that he knew had to be Jennifer and yet again she was cozy with another man.
What the hell is going on here? We come here all the time. They know us.
He knew he couldn't make a scene so he quietly left and drove home. Max was with a lady friend so he was alone with his thoughts. Suddenly he thought he must be losing his mind and thoughts of bubble baths and wine were long gone. He poured himself a drink and sat at the bar trying to make sense of it all. She isn't doing this. She wouldn't, we love each other. There has to be another explanation. She has a twin all of a sudden. He was still nursing his scotch when Jennifer breezed in.
She put her purse and notepad down on the credenza and joined him, "Hello, Darling." She approached him and kissed his cheek, "Boy, am I ready for our long weekend."
"Hmm." He muttered
She looked at him, he was drinking scotch, which he rarely drank, usually brandy, "Are you alright, Darling? More bad news on the Paxton deal?" She knew it had been weighing on him
He shook his head, still not looking at her, "No, just tired, I guess."
She moved behind him and began to massage his shoulders, noting the tension, "You are tense, Jonathan. Maybe we should soak in a hot tub and let the worries of the day melt away." She kissed the back of his neck
He pulled away slightly, "No thanks, I think I'm going to turn in." He got up and headed out of the room
She stood there unsure of what to make of her husband's odd behavior, "Alright, I'll be up in a minute."
She poured herself a brandy and sat on the sofa contemplating what had transpired. She had never known Jonathan to let work bother him like this. That's what it has to be. He's just going through a rough patch and once we get up to the cabin and have some time to relax he'll be back to his old self. After about twenty minutes she headed upstairs and when she entered the bedroom it was dark and Jonathan was asleep, facing the door. She quietly changed and got in bed looking at him with his back to her. Darling, whatever is wrong, I'm here for you. I love you. She resisted the urge to kiss him and turned over and tried to go to sleep.
The next morning Jonathan was just as quiet and the drive, which usually passed quickly, seem to drag with the silence. When they arrived it was almost lunch time so Jennifer unpacked the food they had brought and began to put together a salad. Jonathan took their bags to the bedroom and returned a few minutes later.
"Lunch is ready, Darling." She said trying to keep her tone normal, putting the plates on the table
He sat at the table and began to eat. She brought over his glass of water then joined him, "I guess we should go into town to get a few things we might have forgotten."
"We're only here for three days. I think we have everything we need." He replied
"Alright then, we can take a walk after we eat, take in the smog free air." She suggested with a smile
He maide no reply, only continued eating.
When they were finished Jennifer took their plates to the sink, "Why don't we go ahead and take that walk. The dishes can wait."
"If you don't mind, I think I'll go by myself." He said
She looked at him, her eyes belying hurt and confusion, "Jonathan, I thought we came up here to spend some time together, away from everything. But all you seem to want to do is get away from me."
He hated that look, hated seeing her upset, but he just didn't know what to do, "I'm sorry, I just need some time alone. Please."
"Alright." She managed and turned back to sink to wash the plates. He left without another word or noticing the tear that made it's way down her cheek
Alone walking one of the trails Jonathan started beating himself up. He should just tell Jennifer what's been happening. Tell her he's seen her or someone who looks like her. If it was her, maybe she would be honest about it finally and if it wasn't, they could figure it out together, just like always. He sat on a bench for a moment then got up and made his way back to the cabin to find Jennifer unpacking in the bedroom, putting their clothes in the dresser.
He came up behind her and wrapped his arms around her waist, "I'm sorry Darling."
She wrapped her arms around his, "I know. I just wish you would talk to me."
"I know and I should have said something before because there is something going on I need to tell you about." He told her
She turned around and looked him in the eye, "Then tell me."
He paused for a moment, wanting the words to come out right, then took a deep breath, "Jennifer, twice in the past couple of weeks when you've told me you were going to be somewhere, I've seen you somewhere else and..."
"And what, Jonathan?" She looked at him puzzled
"And you were with another man."
It took a minute to take in what he said and what it appeared he was implying, "Jonathan, are you suggesting...you really think I've been..." She trailed off