Author’s Note: Since I posted a later part of this story for Three Word Wednesday yesterday, I decided to include this for clarity. It explains part of how Fi got to where she was in “A Visitor with Good and Bad Timing.”
Or… Just consider this the beginning of her story.
She stopped dead in the doorway, her stomach twisting. She would have turned and run if she could have, but she was rooted to the spot, unable to avoid the words. At first, she’d thought that her husband was talking to her—he was, in a sense—but no, he was rehearsing a speech. We need to talk. I had an affair. It only lasted a couple months, but there’s a child. No, no. Okay, dearest wife, remember how we have been having so much trouble, how we wanted to have a baby and it’s just not working for us… Well, I’ve got a solution. I know it’s not ideal, but it’s a child. It’s my child. Ours, if you’ll have her. We’ve got—No. Let’s see… Honey, I know you won’t be happy, but there’s something I’ve got to tell you.
“You had an affair?”
Richard’s head jerked up from the sink, and he turned toward her, forcing a smile as he stepped away from the counter. “Hey there, sweetie. Look, I know that this isn’t—”
“Don’t call me sweetie, and don’t come any closer. I don’t believe this. You cannot possibly think that I would be okay with this. You are not doing this to me. Get out.”
“Honey, please,” he said, coming closer. He reached for her, and she put her arms up, shoving him away. She felt like she was covered in ants, dirty little things crawling over her skin, and her stomach heaved. She was going to puke if she didn’t kill him or herself first. She didn’t know what to do or think, but she had to get away from him.
Was this what they were? After eight years of marriage, after fertility treatment after fertility treatment, after putting herself through hell to try and give him what he wanted—what she’d thought she wanted until he said that he’d give her a child by some other woman. She’d considered adoption after all the problems, but this? How could he do this to her?
“It’s going to be okay. We’re finally going to have the family we wanted. We’re going to get past this, and we’ll finally have a use for that nursery.”
She shook her head. “We don’t. No. Not me. I don’t.”
“Of course you do. You’re my wife, and I love you,” Richard told her, putting his hands on her shoulders, holding her still. She took a deep breath, not wanting to look at him. He made her sick. He touched her face, and she shuddered. “Come on, now. It was a stupid mistake, and I’m sorry. It’s over, and I didn’t care about her. I only care about you.”
“Oh, go to hell. You don’t get to say that. Don’t you get it? It should have meant something to you, you bastard. You threw away our marriage for nothing? That’s honestly what you’re trying to tell me? That eight years doesn’t mean a damn thing to you? Don’t you understand? I can never trust you again. And you think I can just raise a child that would be living, breathing proof of how I wasn’t enough for you? That I could stand that insult day in and day out and not hate it and you and myself?”
“You’re a strong woman—”
“Don’t you dare turn that into an insult. You asshole. I don’t know how I ever loved anyone as selfish as you. Get out.”
“I mean it. I want a divorce. The next time you hear from me, it will be through a lawyer. Now get out,” she said, shoving him away.
“No. I’m not going. We’ll work this out.”
Bastard. He really thought they could fix this? No. They would never fix this. She moved past him, trying to remember where she’d left her keys. “Fine. I’ll go.”
“You know what amazes me?” She stopped and turned back to look at him. “Eight years you’ve been married to me, calling me by that name, and you don’t know a damn thing about what it means. We’re through, Richard. I’ll collect my stuff later.”