Sky clapped her hands!
“No, Sweetie, but the time will pass very quickly; and before you know it, it will be bedtime.”
“Take care of yourself.”
Noah headed out to the garage and then took off on his motorcycle.
He was surprised to see Darion there with Gina.
Seeing it made Noah uncomfortable, but he knew that Darion would never cheat on Renee. Gina usually only worked at the seminars on the island. It was unusual to see her here. However, Noah just decided to push the incident from his mind. It was probably perfectly innocent.
“Hey, you wanna grab something to eat before we head back to the hotel?”
“Alright, Bro. Catch ya later.”
Noah went back to the hotel, but he was restless. He couldn’t concentrate, and so he decided to go out for something to eat. He had a taste for ribs and pulled into the parking lot of a rib joint that he spotted on the way to the hotel. He saw Darion’s chopper out front and thought he’d join him. Noah walked inside and saw that the restaurant wasn’t very crowded. He looked around for Darion, but he didn’t see him.
She didn’t realize that she was just making the situation worse for Darion by trying to justify her own behavior.
She looked from Noah to Darion. There was more going on than she realized.
“You knew I was married, Gina. Noah’s wife is one of my wife’s closest friends.”
She looked at Darion and then headed back to the dining area.
“Don’t look at me like that, Bro. This kind of thing happens every day.”
He sighed, knowing how flippant he sounded.
“So, you think that I am going to just stand by and watch you cheat on your wife without saying anything to her? You must be forgetting the fact that she is my friend too! I have more respect for her than to let anyone including you, “Bro”, treat her like she’s dirt.”
Noah was exasperated by the situation and by Darion’s attitude!
“I would never have thought that you would cheat on Rene!”
“Don’t you think I know that! I would never have thought that I would be in this situation. I have always hated cheaters and thought of them as cowards. I… didn’t intend for this to happen. Even before we moved to Santa Fe, Rene and I were growing apart. She was so busy with getting her teaching certification and taking care of the kids that there just wasn’t any time for us! It’s been even worse since we moved. When she is home, she’s preparing her lessons for her class the following day or doing something with the kids.”
“No, I don’t know. Dawg, I’m really confused. Just give me some time figure out what I want to do. I know that I have to tell Rene about Gina. I owe her that much. I’ll give you a call after I get back in town. Please don’t mention this to anybody else, not even Sharlee.”
They went back out into the restaurant, and Darion came to sit with Noah. Neither of them ate very much before they returned to the hotel. Darion didn’t sleep at all that night. It was a good thing that he pretty much already had the skills that Harley was teaching during the remainder of his training because his mind wasn’t on it.
“I’ve made a grave mistake, and I know it. I’m going to talk with Rene tonight when I get home. Can the kids stay here with you and Sharlee tonight? I don’t want them in the house when I talk to Rene. I love her, but I think I’ve blown it. Cheating is the one thing that she told me she would never forgive.”
Noah went with him to his house to get the children.
However, when he told her about Gina, she was furious! She slapped him hard across his face!
“Why, Darion! How could you do this to me, to us!”
“You know there hasn’t really been an us for a long while now! You never make time for us anymore. I’m last on your list!”
Rene just glared at him for a few moments trying to find some calm to speak. Then she exploded again!
“I can’t believe that you have the nerve to blame me for your cheating, and if you think that I believe that “bulls@#t” about not sleeping with her, you can think again! Who is it that always cancels or says he has to do something else every damn time I made plans for the family or plans just for the two of us! It sure as “hell” wasn’t me!”
She stood up.
She was crying and screaming at him.
“Rene, I am so sorry! I know that I–“
“So, I’m guessing you know what he’s done?”
“Yes, he just told me and asked me to come over.”
“I had a feeling that he was cheating, but I pushed the thought away. I told myself that Darion wouldn’t cheat on me. He’s a better man than that. He’s always said that he has no respect for anyone who cheats on a spouse. Now, he does this to me!”
Her voice trembled. Sharlee didn’t say anything. She didn’t know what to say, and so she just let Rene talk.
“I’m going to stay with my parents for a while. I can’t think beyond that. I’ve taken a leave of absence from my job, and I’m taking the children with me. We’re flying out tonight. Can you drive us to the airport?”
Sharlee explained what Gina did for the company.
Sharlee didn’t answer and Rene realized what she’d said.
“Honey, I’m sorry. Of course, I didn’t mean Noah. It’s just that Darion….” She trailed off.
Sharlee hugged her and then helped her to get some things together for herself and the kids.
Rene knew that he was there, but it hurt too much to look at him. She fought for composure before the children reached the car. She didn’t want them to know that anything was wrong. Sharlee drove Rene, Kenan and Angela to the airport and waited with them until their plane took off. Rene told the children that they were going for a visit to their grandparents.
Noah looked sadly at Sharlee. It hurt him to see how Darion had damaged the lives of himself and his family in such a selfish way. They had looked up to Darion and Rene as examples of the type of couple that they wanted to be and the type of marriage they wanted to have. Now…
“Babe, Darion isn’t me and their marriage isn’t ours. That will never happen to us!”
Sharlee didn’t speak at first. Then she said solemnly, “I guess you can’t ever take any part of your life for granted.”
Noah pulled her into his lap and kissed her. His faith in Darion had been shaken. If Darion could cheat on Rene, how could Noah completely trust him to manage his dealership! Noah had a lot to think about. Then too, Darion was his friend and needed Noah to help him get through the mess that he’d made. Noah couldn’t believe how Darion had selfishly caused such devastation to his wife and his children.
There was no way that Noah would hurt Sharlee like that, and it was completely unimaginable to him hurting Sky that way. Sky was his little “bubble of joy.” He sighed. Their lives were becoming very complicated!
Marie, thanks for letting me use “little bubble of joy!” I think it describes Noah’s feelings for Sky perfectly! ❤