HIDDEN HEART– Excerpt
“I guess we have something else in common other than the same father,” Tessa said when she couldn’t take the silence any longer.
Cristian glanced at her, “What’s that?”
“Stubbornness.” She pulled her legs underneath her and rested an elbow on the back of the black sofa, staring at him. “As children, my sisters and I played this game called mum and we’d mimic and grimace until whoever made the slightest noise would be disqualified. You wanna try it?”
He turned off the TV and turned to face her, copying her body position. “You came all the way here to play mum with me?”
“I came because I was worried about you. Besides, that’s what siblings do, right?”
“Tessa, you have to stop this sibling this, sibling that, brother here, sister there. I still have a huge issue with this and I don’t want to talk about it.”
“Why does it bother you so much? Is it because it’s me or do you struggle with the notion of a half-sister?” she asked.
He didn’t say anything. Instead he picked up the remote and held it as if he wanted to turn the TV back on, but he didn’t.
“It’s because . . . because of you,” he said, not looking straight at her. He stood and walked away, looking out the window. “I feel like such an idiot for putting my heart out there and finding out afterward that you’re my sister. When I saw you at my father’s house it was like the rug had been pulled from under my feet. I just can’t look at you without feeling ashamed for wanting you. Can you imagine what it would’ve been like if that night we would’ve had sex?” He shook his head and turned to look at her, his eyes sparkling with apprehension.
Tessa stood and came to face him. Shrugging a shoulder, she said, “I’ve been asking myself the same question, freaking out over it. But I can’t and won’t do it anymore. We haven’t slept together and that’s what matters. I want you and Adrian in my life and I’ll be damned if I can’t have you both. We belong together. True, not in the way you wanted, but hopefully in time you’ll forgive him. I want to grow old together, share holidays together, have our children play together. You can’t deny our bond, no matter how pissed off you are at Adrian right now.”
Cristian shook his head and walked away, returning to the sofa. The boxing match was back on.
“He is pretty worried about you,” Tessa said.
“And you drive me nuts, you know that?”
“Get used to it.” She came next to him, ruffled his hair, then placed a kiss on top of his head and walked away. “See you tomorrow night. Dinner’s at six. I have Eva, a friend coming over, and she’s amazing. The fundraiser is around the corner and I asked her to help us. And if you have any leftover pie from your neighbor, bring it. I love cherry pie.”
Find it at: