“You should lie down here with me. You look tired. They can wait a little longer,” I tell him, not liking the feeling in the pit of my stomach.
He shakes his head and takes the water from my hand, setting it on the table next to me before helping me lie back down.
“Kai,” I whisper, noticing he’s avoiding looking at me.
His eyes come to mine and I see pain flash through them before it disappears, when his face lowers and he mutters, “I’m sorry,” against my mouth. He rests his forehead against mine for a moment. Then he gets up and leaves the room without looking back.
I watch him go, and tears fill my eyes because I know that was the end of us.
“Oh, honey, don’t cry,” my mom says when she finds me curled into a ball on my side, tears dripping onto the pillow, a few minutes later. She pushes my hair away from my face then hands me a tissue. “We’re so relieved you’re okay.”
“Just a bad case of food poisoning.” I spit out yet another lie, knowing there is no way I can possibly tell my parents that someone tried to kill me.
“Good thing your husband thinks fast on his toes,” Dad says.
I tilt my head back to meet his eyes then nod in agreement.
“Do you feel okay?” Mom questions, looking at the machine next to the bed.
“Tired but fine,” I assure her.
“We’re glad you woke up before we left.”
“We wish we could stay, but the bakery’s been busy and we don’t have a lot of help right now,” my dad mutters, looking guilty.
“Of course,” I whisper, taking his hand. “I’ll come see you guys soon,” I promise him and actually mean it.
“Maybe we will be back before that. Perhaps for a baby shower.” My mom smiles, and new tears begin to sting my nose, but I fight them back. “We love you, honey.”
“Love you too, Mom,” I whisper as a lump of emotion clogs my throat.
She moves out of the way, and my dad takes her place, leaning down and kissing my forehead.
“Remember you always have a safe place to fall,” he tells me before kissing my forehead again and standing to his full height.
“We’ll call as soon as we land in Nevada. Just make sure you rest and that your husband does as well.”
“I will, Mom,” I reply and then kiss her cheek when she leans down to give me another hug.
“Bye, honey,” my dad says as he takes my mom’s hand, and they leave the room.
I stare at the closed door for a moment before turning onto my side and carefully pulling the covers up over my shoulder.
I wake up and the room is dark, but I feel the weight of Kai’s arm around me and his warmth at my back, so I push myself deeper into him. He tightens his hold on me as he whispers something I can’t understand. I try to pull myself out of my sleep-ridden state enough to ask what it means, but exhaustion takes me away before I ever get the chance.
I wake up with the sun shining on me and the bed behind me completely cold. I lift my hand, and the IV that was there is gone, along with the machines. I roll over and look at the clock—it’s after two in the afternoon. I almost think that yesterday was a bad dream, but then my eyes land on a folded piece of paper on the pillow next to me. I scoot up in bed, and with shaky hands, I unfold the note.
I was wrong. I couldn’t keep you safe. My lawyer will be in touch with the divorce papers, and my men will take care of you until I know you’re safe to go home.
My lungs compress and I fight to take a breath, as it feels like my heart is being ripped from my chest. Even though I knew it was coming, it still kills me. I carefully sit on the side of the bed, and the door opens. I turn my head and my eyes collide with Pika’s.
“Do you need help?” he asks softly.
I want to scream at him to go away, but instead, I shake my head and stand slowly.
“Let me help you,” he says, ignoring me and walking into the room.
Tears begin to fall again and I swipe them away with the back of my hand.
“It will be okay,” he consoles quietly.
The pity I hear in his tone causes a ball of anger to build in my stomach. He wraps his arm around my shoulders, and I push him away, stumbling slightly.
“Careful,” he growls, sounding just like Kai, making fury explode through me.
“Go away!” I scream, pushing him away again. “Get out of my room!”
His arms come around me, and I pound against his chest with the back of my fist as tears stream down my cheeks.
“Shhhhh,” he hushes me, forcing me closer to his body, where my fists wrap into his shirt and I bury my face in his chest to cry harder. “It will be okay.” He rubs my back as my legs give out under me. He catches me before I fall to the floor, picks me up, and carries me to bed, laying me back down. “Do you want me to stay with you?” he asks, pulling the covers back over my shoulder.
“No. I just want to be alone,” I breathe through my tears and attempt to pull myself together.
“I don’t mind,” he whispers.
I look at him and shake my head.
He nods, looking around and then back down at me. I can tell he wants to say something else, but instead, he kisses my forehead and stands. I hear the door close, but my eyes stay locked on the sky I can see out the window.
Myla, this is stupid. You weren’t even in love with him. Stop acting like a lovesick fool, I lie to myself then bury my face in my pillow and cry harder.
“Now what are you baking?”
I look at the open kitchen doorway and narrow my eyes at Aye. “Nothing for you, and don’t even think about coming in here.” I wave the spoon at him, trying to sound firm. It never fails that he shows up when I’m in the middle of baking.
“You’re really going to do that to Daddy?” he asks, and I can’t help but smile at him.
“Fine. You can have one, but first, you have to promise you will take me somewhere.”
“I’ll take you,” Pika says, joining us.
“You don’t have to do that,” I reply softly, watching as he comes over, dips his finger into the bowl of cookie dough, and swipes some off the edge before licking it off his finger.
“You know I don’t mind.” His eyes go soft, making me shift uncomfortably.
Since Kai left, Pika and Aye have constantly been at my side. I would honestly be lost without either of them, but over the last week, I have started seeing a change in the way Pika looks at me.