Why is Darren keeping Toots away from his studio? How will Cyd react to Ruyb’s secret? Heather gets her groove back… at what price?
“It’s not like that… exactly.” Cyd stares at her without speaking. His pained look speaks volumes. Ruyb’s puffy red eyes tear. “I tried to file for divorce. You see that he’s abusive. Only I was told that if I filed now that I’d…” She lowers her head and sighs. “I’ll be deported.” Ruyb’s shoulders slump in defeat. “I don’t love Mando… hell, I don’t even like Mando. He’s such a pig.” She spat out the last word as if it were distasteful to her mouth. She shudders visibly.
“Hey!” Armando winces still holding his ribs. “Did I mention broken ribs over here?”
“It isn’t just the physical abuse. Bones heal, bruises fade…” She glares at Armando quickly tearing her eyes away. The pain is evident when she meets Cyd’s unwavering gaze. “His cheating was a relief. It meant he wasn’t near me.” She takes a shakey breath. “He would say it’s my fault. That I’m not good enough, I’m not smart enough, I’m not beautiful enough and I’m the reason he had to find other women to satisfy him. The beatings were my fault because…” Her voice hitches. “I’m a failure as a wife and a woman.” The tears fall at last, free to slip down her red, puffy, bruised cheeks.
Cyd reaches out to her. She flinches. Cyd pauses. Their eyes meet. He gently brushes the tears from her cheeks before pulling her in to his arms. He holds her while she cries her tears of relief. “You could have told me.”
“I didn’t know how.” Her body shakes in his arms. Her voice is muffled by his chest. “I tried a few times but I was scared of rejection. I don’t think I would have lived if you rejected me, too.”
“Oh boo fucking hoo. Where’s the phone? I need a damn ambulance.”
“Ruyb?” He pulls her from him and looks her in the eyes. “I need you to do me a favor.”
“Hmm?” Her eyes are even puffier and redder than before.
“Go take a nice long hot shower.” She opens her mouth to speak. He puts a finger over her lips to keep her from responding. She stops and stares at him. She nods silently. “I love you.”
She smiles. He moves his finger from her lips. “I love you, too.”
He caresses her cheek. “I’m torn.”
“How so?” Toots’ eyes search his for answers.
“I should go home to my son.” His fingers wrap in her hair at the nape of her neck. He pulls her lips to his and kisses her lightly. His voice hitches. “Only I don’t want to.”
“He’s old enough not to need constant care.” She easily slips her arms around him again. “I’m sure he will be just fine for a few hours.”
“Siren…” His voice grows thick with his need for her, “always luring me in to your arms. How am I, a mere mortal, supposed to resist you?”
Toots presses closer. “You don’t. You simply give in to my whims.”
Mitch walks down the steps immersed in his book. He pauses at the foot of the stairs and frowns at the paragraph. The phone on the wall rings loudly trying to gain his attention. He ignores it for the moment until he reaches the end of the chapter. He snorts, closes the book with his finger holding his place and looks around noting Christina’s absence. The phone continues its annoying ring refusing to be ignored.
Closing the distance to the phone he plucks the reciever off its cradle with ease. “Yes?” His frown is instantly replaced with a smile as the voice on the other end speaks to him. “Hey, I was just… oh?” His book held across his chest, the phone receiver pressed to his ear, he leans against the wall listening. His grin widens until he is practically beaming. “Excellent! That’s the best news I’ve had all night.” He glances around the staircase and frowns. “Hmm? Ya… sorry, just distracted. I thought Christina was… oh?” He chuckles. “Sure, I’ll talk with her and let you know tomorrow.” He looks up the stairs and his grin returns at the sound of rushing water. “Listen, I’ll see you tomorrow. I’d say stay out of trouble, but really what’s the point?” He laughs and shakes his head. “Have fun.”
He clicks the end button and looks up the stairs. “I know I will.” He hangs the reciever back on the craddle and takes the staris two at a time. His grin is still present, his book all but forgotten in his hand.
Cyd doesn’t speak he simply looks at Armando. Armando fidgets. “What?”
“You’re in my home.”
“Ya…” Armando glares at Cyd.
“I’m simply waiting for you to leave.” Cyd continues to stare at Armando.
“What makes you think I’m leaving without what’s mine?” Armando counters.
“Nothing and noone in this house is yours. You were paid for the delivery. I made sure to give you a tip-”
“A broken rib is not a tip. Five simoleans… ten simoleans… that’s a tip!” Armando hisses.
“I’ll tell you what…” Cyd’s calm is grating on Armando’s nerves. “You have entered my home uninvited. You remain unwanted. If you insist on remaining, I can and will forcibly remove you from my residence… or…”
Armando bristles. His ego is bruised along with his ribs. “You got in a few lucky punches but-”
“Or…” Cyd interrupts. “I can just kill you in self defence.”
“Possibly…” Cyd shrugs indifferently. “I am within my rights to protect my home and loved ones from an intruder.”
“Oh my…” Toots purrs huskily. She moves her hips against him and licks her lips. “Is this something you should be starting just before you’re heading out the door?”
“Am I heading for the door?” His hands slide down her back to her bottom. He squeezes and chuckles. “Maybe I was… but I’m suddenly in no real hurry to leave.”
“Be still my heart…” She leans closer. “Mr. Dreamer, could you possibly be hesitant to leave my side?”
“That I am, future Mrs. Dreamer.”
Toots melts and swoons. “Mrs. Dreamer… Mrs. Grim-Dreamer… Mrs. Toots Grim-Dreamer… that really has a beautiful ring to it, don’t you think?”
“Grim-Dreamer?” He chuckles. “It has its own unique charm.” He kisses her hungrily, holding her body close to his. In one fluid movement he sweeps her into his arms and carries her in to the bedroom. “My son can wait for a bit longer… right now, my woman needs me.”
“But I don’t understand.” Christina shivers as his hands roam.
He raises an eyebrow and grins. “What’s to understand? They can’t meet with us tonight and asked if we would come by tomorrow. I didn’t really want to go tonight. The girls are happily occupied with their current play toy. So it all works out rather nicely.”
“But Dina sounded so excited on the phone…” Mitch continues to distract her from her current line of thinking. Christina whimpers.
Mitch stops for a moment and grins. “Breathless?” Christina nods. Mitch snorts and shakes his head. “That wasn’t her excitement for going to these people’s house. It’s a game they play with Don. He sees how long they can keep a civil conversation before losing it…”
“This Don guy upsets them?” She tilts her head. Mitch chuckles and nibbles along her neck.
“No, he uh…” He slides his hand lower giving her a demonstration.
She grips at him. Her eyes widen. “Oh!”
“Uh huh…” He keeps up the playing watching her face with a grin. “Now the hard part is they keep a civil conversation while he does something like…”
“That’s stupid… and even if you’re right, you can’t keep me from Ruyb.” He sneers. “She’s still my wife.”
“Symantics and technicalities,” Cyd disregards his statement. “That can be easily remedied with your death…”
“They’ll deport her. Hell, maybe I’ll call now and you can watch them as they haul her sorry ass away.” Armando peers at him. “Ya, so you can’t have her either… ya that bitch causes me nothing but problems, broken ribs, probably lost my job now so ya… she deserves to get her ass sent back to… whatever.”
It’s Cyd’s turn to sneer. “You don’t even know where she’s from.”
“Sure I do. You think you got all the answers… she’s from that uh… Simanada!” Armando stands taller. “Ha! You thought I don’t know.”
“You don’t. She isn’t from Simanada.” Cyd smirks. “Leave.”
“Simanada, Simexico, whatever…” Armando growls. “The bitch is going to hell for all I care.”
“As the expression goes… you first.”
“You’re fucking creepy… ya know that?” Armando’s face is screwed up in pain and annoyance. “I’m outta here.”
“That’s what I’ve been waiting for.” Cyd motions towards the door.
“Why the hell do you care what happens to her?” Armando holds his middle and stares at Cyd.
“Love… respect… kindness…” Cyd grabs him by the collar and begins escorting him towards the door. “You need to learn a thing or two about all of those civil things.”
She looks at her reflection and sighs softly. She closes her eyes, presses her forhead to the cold mirror and sighs again. “Why can’t he just disappear and leave me alone?”
She stares at the door with concern. Most of the yelling is one sided. Not surprising to Ruyb. She knows what a hot head Armando is and how opposite Cyd is. She smiles at the thought of Cyd.
Ruyb touches her face lightly, before recoiling and hissing. “Armando why can’t you just die?”
She puts her hand over her mouth. Her eyes tear. She closes them hard before getting sick to her stomach.
Magic sighs exageratedly. “Bored.” She lounges on her couch staring at nothing. “Ugh!” She lies back on her couch, her legs extended, and her hands on her belly while staring blankly at the ceiling. “Nothing good ever happens around-”
She tilts her head with a quizical look. She sits up planting her feet on the carpet and peers at the nothingness listening intently. She gasps practically running for the lights. Flipping the switch, she casts the room in to sudden darrkness. Her breathing is errattic. Her lips form the repeated words that are shaped yet not spoken until at last the words break forth from her lips, “Oh mah guh!”
Standing at the window, her heavy breathing leaves misty puffs on the pain. She covers her mouth with both hands barely containing a squeal. Quickly she plucks her binoculars from her magically indistinct bag of simholding… takes her binoculars that she conveniently leaves near this particular window for such occasions and licks her lips. She whimpers. “Both… twins… ?!” She focuses the binoculars and sits down hard on the arm of the sofa. “Oooo…”
‘This’ Pleasant View - Gen 1 07