Monday, September 7, 2015

Chapter 8, Surprises

***WARNING!!! My stories often contain strong language, sensitive issues, and, at times, other content that could be construed as offensive. Beliefs and viewpoints of characters are not necessarily the beliefs and viewpoints the Author holds in true life.***

I was dreading lunch with Terrrill. He seemed nice enough but then, so had Simon. I didn't want to get into the same trap I'd gotten into with Simon. Right now, my life was very full with raising Nathaniel and getting my new company accustomed to my ownership. I had a campaign and advertising strategy to map out for the launch of our new products, and I certainly didn't have time to be entertaining male company.

Noon was rolling around very quickly. I'd thought of just not showing up and later on just sending him a text saying I'd had an emergency come up at work. Okay, so it was a boldfaced lie and it certainly wasn't the first time I'd lied about something. What changed my mind about not showing was the dawning realization that I'd be taking the coward's way out. After everything I'd been through, I didn't want to start doing the chicken dance now. I'd just have to suck it up and have lunch with the man.

Terrill was waiting for me when I arrived at the bistro. He signaled to me, then got up to pull out my chair for me. It was a beautiful day and he'd gotten us a nice table outside. The fresh air and sunshine was wonderful and I was hungry.

"I'm glad you came, Debbie. A part of me thought maybe you'd stand me up. You didn't seem very enthusiastic about having lunch with me," Terrill said.

His statement sent my conscience into a tailspin and I felt like a complete ass. I looked down at the table and blushed. "I thought about standing you up but in the end, I couldn't do it," I confessed.

"Well, I'm glad you decided to come. I do hate eating alone," Terrill said. The warmth of his smile reached inside me and I felt some of the tension give way.

"Me too," I said, smiling back.

"Something tells me you eat alone a lot," he said.

"At work, yes, but at home, I eat with my son. Being a toddler, however, his table manners are appalling," I laughed.

Terrill laughed too. That deep, rich laugh of his had a quality that would brighten anyone's day. "I don't have any children but I've always wanted them. I was an only child and was lonely for a brother or sister to play with, you know? My wife and I tried for kids but it never happened."

I was taken aback. "You're...married?" Dread surged through me and I had to swallow down the need to flee.

"I was. I'm a widower. Betsy died some years back," he said.

"Oh, God, I'm sorry," I said, sympathy for him replacing the dread.

He sighed. "Yeah, me too. We didn't know she was sick until it was too late. After that, I couldn't bring myself to get involved with anyone until..."

"Until?" I prompted when he trialed off.

Terrill gave me a sheepish look. "I was on a Reality TV dating show once. It's called 'The One.' It was quite a while ago as a contestant."

I blinked, then looked at him more closely. His admission brought on recognition for me and I knew immediately which season he'd been on. I don't watch much reality TV, especially dating shows, but I began watching "The One" when it had been announced that my favorite author in the whole world was going to be the Bachelorette. "Why, you were on Lenora Landgraab's season, weren't you?"

"Yep," he said.

"She's my favorite author ever," I confessed.

"I'm not into romance novels so haven't sampled any of her writing. I do know she's very talented musically. She was always singing to herself when we were on the show," Terrill said.

"Yes, she has a lovely voice. Meeting her one day is on my bucket list," I replied.

Terrill grinned at me. "You have a bucket list?"

"Doesn't everybody?" I asked, chuckling.

"I didn't before but now I do. When Betsy died, it made me realize how fragile life is. After I got over the worst of the grief, I decided to try to fulfill everything I could that's on my list. I do the best I can, but I have a long way to go," he said.

He seemed to have a great outlook on things, but I could see the sadness that appeared in his eyes from time to time. Like me, he was a lonely soul trying to get on with life as best he could. "You'll accomplish it, I'm sure," I said.

We continued to eat but in silence for a while. We resumed talking over coffee and dessert and I was surprised at how relaxed I felt. "So, what do you like to do in your spare time?" I asked.

"Well, I work out a lot and am a closet guitar player," he said.

I raised a brow. "Why a closet player?"

"Because I'm not good enough to play around anybody," he said. "I just do it for fun and relaxation. I sing a little but I'm pretty mediocre."

"Oh, I'm sure you're better than you give yourself credit for," I said. "What kind of music do you like?"

"I like most types but I play around with some of the classic rock stuff. You know, like the Beatles and the Rolling Stones," he said.

"No kidding!" I said, leaning forward in excitement. "My favorite song is 'As Tears Go By' and that seems to be the one I play around with a lot."

"You play guitar?" he asked.

I laughed. "Only a little. I'm more of a strummer than anything. My singing is even worse."

"I'm sure not," he said.

I snorted. "Ever hear a bullfrog with laryngitis?"

He shook his head and roared with laughter.

"Well, that's what I sound like. Believe me, I'm no Barbara Streisand."

"Who is?" he said. Then, both of us were doubled over in helpless laughter.

The remainder of my workday passed in a blur and I was actually whistling as I walked through my door upon arriving home. I didn't know if I was feeling giddy from the glass of wine I'd had with lunch or because I got to spend time with someone who actually didn't want something from me.

I changed into comfortable clothes, scooped up my son, danced with him around the room, and gave him a big tickle that sent him into gales of glee. "Your Mommy's life is looking up, Nathaniel, my love. I think we're gonna make it."

I didn't have to work the next day, so I took some time, something I normally don't get, to read the paper. It seemed that the only news reported nowadays was always bad. I remembered the day when I got the shock of my life when Shane's name was splashed all over the front page. He'd been arrested for his part in the kidnapping and attempted murder of Lenora Landgraab. Thinking myself to be hallucinating, I closed my eyes for a moment, then opened them to look again. Sure enough, Shane's name was right there in black and white.

When I'd married Shane, I never dreamed that he was the way he was. At first, he was very loving and wonderful, but when our lives got busy and I refused to have kids, he changed. He became a different person but I didn't realize just how different he was. Maybe this was how he'd been all along and the way he'd been at the start of our marriage had been the facade. I believed that now. Gone was that sweet, adoring person that probably, in reality, never was. I encountered the person he truly was firsthand when he broke into my house and raped me.

Now, as I sat reading, another piece of news caught my attention. Ericka Adamsson had filed for divorce against her husband, Simon Adamsson on the grounds of mental cruelty and adultery. I forced out a breath and put down the paper. I knew for certain that this could get ugly since Ericka was the town mayor and Simon was a high profile businessman. The case would probably go to court and there was a good chance I'd be dragged into it. Oh man! I'd made such a mess of things and I was paying a high price. I deserved whatever came to me, but my son was an innocent person. Protecting him from being hurt was my top priority and I had to find a way to see that it got done.

Later that day, another bombshell was dropped on me. The results of the paternity test were in, and it showed that Simon clearly was Nathaniel's father. Shane had been in jail when the test was done, and since I had kept the rape quiet, nobody except Simon knew that there was another possibility for Nathaniel's paternity. Because of it, Shane hadn't been ordered to submit to the test, and there wasn't the need for it now since the results were so clear. At least I had something to be thankful for. The monster I was married to hadn't fathered my son, so there was no way he could legally touch him. He was also in prison for a very long time, which made me sleep better at night.

Things like this always happen in threes as they say; my life was no exception. I was about to sit down to dinner when my doorbell rang. I felt all the color drain from my face when I saw who was on the other side. "I'm Erica Adamsson. We need to talk."

Bonus Pic

She's just so adorable holding her cute little boy. :)

Author's Note: I'd like to thank Jazen for use of Terrill Maldonado for this chapter and for giving him to me for my story. She has some awesome stories that I'd highly recommend taking a look at. You can find them by clicking the links below.

"As Life Goes"
"Kiss of a Vampire"
Just Simming Along


  1. Aww well glad Debbie didn't stand Terrill up. They got along well enough it seems. Relaxed and easy just what she needed. Sad about him losing his wife :( I could understand Debbie's first reaction to hearing the word wife. I'm glad she didn't say anything bad and let him explain.

    Debbie's made some mistakes, but she's trying to make it as best she can. She owns up to it and I like that about her. Her focus is on her son and work.

    Crazy how much Shane seemed to change, but maybe she was right and he was that person all along. Some can hide it better than others and he did hide things for a while but slowly the real him started to creep out. It's good she's free and clear of him and that he's not the father. Simon isn't a great choice but he's a far cry better than Shane!

    Oh boy, Ericka at her door. This can't be good.

    1. I'm glad Debbie didn't stand Terrill up either. She needed that time out and relaxed and easy was definitely what she needed. They do get on well enough, and I'm sure we'll be seeing more of him. :) She didn't want to get into the same situation she'd gotten into with Simon, so when she heard the word "wife," her defenses wentn up. But at least she let him explain and she feels bad for him for his loss. :(

      Debbie is fully aware of the messes she's made and doesn't make any excuses. She knows she was wrong on many counts and realizes there are consequences. Yes, her main focus is on her son and work.

      Debbie is very relieved to be free and clear of Shane. She couldn't believe how much he seemed to change, but after doing what he did to her, I think she realizes that he was good at hiding the real him. At least he was for a while but I guess hiding it became too hard after a while, especially when Debbie didn't play ball about having kids. Neither choice for Nathaniel's father is great, but Simon definitely is a much better one than Shane.

      Nope, not good. Ericka at her door is going to spell trouble, I'm afraid.

  2. I am glad she didn't set Terrill up or else she would've missed out on something good. Good thing Debbie let him explain that he's a widower before getting all defensive. Sorry about his wife. : ( Nathanial is a cutie and I am sure a relief is off her shoulders when that dna test came back as Simon's child. So Shane was putting up act their whole marriage? Well that explains a couple of things. Hopefully Ericka isn't going to stir up any trouble... But I have a feeling that it might it just go that way.

    1. At the time, Debbie was very apprehensive about going to lunch with him, but she's so glad she went through with it. She had a nice day and is finding out that Terrill is a really nice guy. Yeah, his wife dying was sad. :( Neither choice for a father is great but at least Simon is the lesser of two evils. Sadly, that happens with abusers. They act all loving and nice at first and then eventually, the darker side comes out. :( Shane's the type who wants and needs to get his way and when Debbie didn't play ball, she got to see what he was really like. Ericka at the door isn't going to be pretty. I'm afraid there's trouble afoot. :(

  3. Oh good. Now I know where Terrill is from. They seemed to really connect and have a good time. It really lightened her mood, which was probably a really good thing considering how the rest of her day went downhill.
    Not sure how I feel about Simon being the dad, Is that what caused the divorce? Did he even know yet?
    Eep the wife! That's not good! I wonder how that talk is going to go...

    1. PS It so nice to be getting caught up. It's like binging on Netflix! hahaha

    2. I figured it would click eventually. LOL! They did connect and she's glad she went through with the lunch date. She had a great time, which was something she desperately needed. The rest of the day...yeah. Not fun at all.

      Neither Simon nor Shane are great choices for being the father but at least Simon is the lesser of two evils. Not sure if he knows about the test just yet but Ericka knew he was chearing on her. Yep, the wife at the door - not pretty.

    3. It's great to see you getting caught up. :) I love getting comments and I've missed seeing yours.

  4. I'm happy to see that Debbie did go on her date with Terrill as its time for her to move on. They actually look very sweet getting to know each other and I do hope this is the start of something for both of them.

    I do have to wonder how Shane went from being the man who just wanted to have a family into the monster that rapes and kidnaps? At least he is not Nathaniel's father so we can thank God for that.

    Oh boy Ericka found out! I don't think this is going to be pretty.

    1. Debbie wouldn't admit it at first, but she really did need to go on that lunch date. :) She's glad she did now because she had a great time and is discovering that Terrill is a great guy. They did connect and I look forward to seeing where this can go. :)

      Perhaps Shane wouldn't have been the great family man he tried to portray to Debbie at first. He wanted kids, but maybe he had ulterior motives. Someone who is as sinister as he was wouldn't be able to hide that fact forever. It's probably a good thing he didn't have kids. Yes, thank God he's not Nathaniel's father, as he might have tried to make Debbie's life a living nightmare.

      Nope, not pretty at all. Ericka is pissed and I think all hell may break loose. :(

  5. Shoo Ericka. We don't want to talk to you!!!

    We do want some more Terrill, though <3 I got scared for a moment that he too was married.

  6. I am a fan of Terrill, truly. He seems more down to earth, and he knows what tragedy is. I think that the two of them could really connect. I suppose time will tell, especially with the realization that Simon is Nathaniel's dad and he is getting a divorce.

    I am very happy that it is Si and not Shane, it is like the best of a bad situation, I guess. At least Simon didn't try to kidnap anybody... what a crazy person Shane is!! I am glad he is locked up.

    Oh my, what a way to end the chapter!!!

  7. It was all going so well until she answered the door. Debbie can't get a break.