Trigger Warning: This story contains stalking as well as implied signs of violence
Are you seriously going to see her, wearing the same suit as the one you wore on our first date?
How unoriginal, James.
I scoff and shake my head as I watch you make a pathetic attempt at making yourself look presentable, tugging at the lapels, adjusting your coat. You eye yourself on the rearview mirror, smiling smugly at your reflection as if you did a splendid job at making yourself look like a delicious meal. And as if that doesn’t cut it, you even comb your hair back with your hand, only for your bangs to fall back down against your forehead.
I don’t know why you still bother to fix your hair, James. Even after all the hair products I bought for you, none of them could hold your straight hair for a moment longer. It’s almost like a curse, really. But I must say, I feel a bit better knowing your hair won't cooperate tonight.
Oh, great, I think when I see that you’re spritzing your neck with perfume. This date will end with you two cuddled in bed, I suppose. I grit my teeth at the thought of it.
Then you finally alight from your car, and I hold my breath when I realize you’re taking a quick scan of your surroundings before fishing your phone out from your pocket. My knuckles turn bone-white from the way I am gripping the steering wheel right now.
What are the chances that you would think someone is following you? Thirty-seventy? Fifty-fifty? If one’s partner is as narcissistic as mine is, would they also think that way? Did you really think I would follow you, James?
All those unanswered questions vanish when my cellphone rings on the passenger seat. My head almost snaps when I glance down on it.
You’re calling me.
Reaching for it, I dart a look your way. You aren’t looking at my direction, and instead are leaning against your car door, legs crossed at the ankles, staring at nothing. Your left hand tapping against your thigh whilst the other hand holding your phone against your ear.
I take a deep breath, then I answer, “Honey?”
“Hey, bad news, darling,” you start, and I roll my eyes at how guilty you sound, “I’m going to be home late. Arthur needs me. Have you eaten dinner yet?”
“I thought you’d be home early, so I cooked your favorite.”
I raise an eyebrow as I watch you roll your head back towards the sky. I couldn’t see your facial expression from afar, though. Are you thinking of a new excuse? Or are you already bored?
“I’m sorry, Anne. You should eat now, then go to sleep, alright? I’ll be back by midnight, maybe?”
“Can’t you be home by eleven at least?”
You make a humming sound as you think of a response. “I’ll try. It depends, though.”
I almost laugh at your reply. Almost. Because obviously, it depends on whether your date with that woman ends early or not.
And then, I hear your breath hitch. It’s soft, almost inaudible. But it’s there. You aren’t looking at the sky anymore, you’re looking at something else now. I follow where your eyes are stuck on, and then I finally see her.
She steps out of her house, and I clench my jaw as I check her out. No wonder you clean up quite nicely, I bitterly think to myself. Because who wouldn’t? When a woman as gorgeous as she has taken a liking to you, who wouldn’t dare to impress her, right, James?
Your navy-blue bespoke suit matches well with her stunning, lavender dress that contrasts beautifully with her porcelain skin. I almost want to tear my eyeballs out because it becomes increasingly difficult not to look away from you two. The fact that I genuinely thought you guys looked great together makes me want to scream.
And it doesn’t help that you did not say anything else, and instead hung up the phone without a word.
The grip on my phone tightens as I watch you saunter towards her, and my phone drops down on my lap when you lean in to peck her plump lips. Despite trying to keep it in, I cannot help it. The jealousy seeps through when you snake your hands around her waist and deepen the kiss.
You would tell me you’re just friends. You would tell me that whatever suspicion I have are baseless and that I should just trust you more; that you’re faithful and wouldn’t even look at any other woman the way you would look at me. But here you are, doing the exact opposite because you think that I’m gullible.
I was convinced that nothing could separate us. But when she entered our lives, James, I should have known that maybe it’s not nothing, but someone instead.
“Do you see her differently?” I had questioned you for the first time.
We were on our way home from your company’s Christmas party, enervated by the long hours of socializing and dancing. It was almost two in the morning, and I was still a bit tipsy, but that did not mean the question came out of nowhere.
“See who differently?”
“That woman,” I replied curtly.
“Whoever you’re referring to, I don’t see them the way I see you,” you told me, your voice slow and calm like a mother would use to a child.
“And how do you see me?” I finally turned my head to look at you from the passenger seat, challenging you to offer even a white lie.
You stopped at a red light before mirroring my position. “I married you, didn’t I? Do I still have to answer that question, my love?”
And then, you showed me that smile. The smile I was sure nobody has gotten the chance to look at. And I wondered if all of this was just in my delusional head.
It isn’t, though.
Because right now, after you pulled away from her with your fingers still splayed across her hips, you are showing that same stupid smile to her, too.
And that is the last straw, James.
I take a gander at the glove compartment, my hands aching to reach for the pistol inside. You may be a jerk, James, but you are my jerk.
If you’re going to show that smile to anyone, that should be your own wife.