Chapter 6 – Julian
I hate admitting that I’m wrong. So I don’t. Not unless I think it will truly elevate my relationship with someone else, and that doesn’t happen often.
When I apologized to Alyssa for my actions on Tuesday, I expected that to mean we were fine, we could move on, and we could get back to what we had previously agreed to.
Apparently, I’m an idiot.
I’m not used to people – especially women – laying into me like that. The only person to really do that is my mother, and nothing she ever had to say was worth remembering. Certainly not worth her flushed cheeks and the spittle between her teeth. But when Alyssa looked at me like that at dinner? I realized that I had fucked up more than I previously thought.
I thought she would commend my foresight. My ability to look after us. What else have I been doing, besides offering sexual pleasure, financial security, and all the protections I can afford? If one of those protections is ensuring our health, then it’s the right thing to do, yes?
People are complicated, and that fact pisses me off.
So Alyssa is angry with me. Still. She plays it off at work, but her texts to me are terse and completely devoid of the flirtatious nature she once displayed. Damnit, I want that Alyssa back. None of this is worth it unless she’s genuinely attracted to me.
What do I have to do to get her back?
She doesn’t respond to my romantic advances, like flowers on her desk or expensive chocolates waiting for her at her apartment. She acts like she’s running a work errand when she heads to the seamstress for her dress fitting. When I coyly text late at night that it might be nice to share photos to tie us over, she responds with a selfie of her without makeup and in her PJs. No, there’s no cleavage. She knew what I meant, too.
While I won’t say the picture she does send me goes unappreciated – because, as I’ve said before, Alyssa Pendleton is an exceptionally attractive woman, regardless of what others may say – this is a huge message that she’s not getting any sexual satisfaction out of this. At first, the only blame I take is in my assumed lack of sexual prowess. Then I realize that’s ridiculous. She was more than satisfied both times we hooked up.
It’s not until I’m halfway through a video call Thursday afternoon that it hits me: it’s my fault because I offended her so badly.
Exactly how much does a man have to apologize and explain himself? I’m not even excited when my recent test results are delivered on my desk early Friday morning, when Alyssa is still in class. Theoretically, she will receive hers when she arrives later. The only relief I feel is that immediate satisfaction that everything is exactly what I expected in the health department.
I should be ecstatic. This forced celibacy I suggested we follow could end tonight.
When I bring this up to her at the end of the day, Alyssa implies that we should wait until tomorrow, after the mixer. “We have an early day tomorrow, sir,” she says with robotic diction. “We should get to bed early. If you have your way, neither of us will get to bed early.”
That sounds flirtatious on paper, but with her body language so closed off and her tone clipped, I know it’s anything but. She’s treating this like a business deal, which normally I would be all for, but even the best business dealings have an element of humanity to them.
I’m starting to rethink this arrangement. As I settle into my penthouse for the night, I decide that tomorrow night is my chance to seduce her again. It will be over a week since I first seduced her. If it was that easy a week ago? It should be a piece of cake now.
I’ll have to step up my game, however. No more vanilla. I’ll show her a side of myself that will suck her in – and keep her here.