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    vanalas
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Comments, critiques and tips are warmly welcome.

Raging Love - 4. Chapter 4: Antonio does something shocking. And trouble in paradise.

The doors to the great mansion flung open, revealing a gorgeous man, Travis, standing there and looking tense. As soon as the doors opened, his eyes scanned the place and he felt a cold wind hit his face, sending shivers down his spine. He held his hands together as he took the first step inside, looking all around.

The place looks deserted, at least, he loved that Antonio had kept to his end of the deal. He didn’t want anyone to see him. As he slowly entered the house, he had no idea where the wind came from, blowing his hair backward. He was feeling nervous as he scanned the entire living room.

Sure, the mansion looked bigger and expensive compared to the previous one they had lived in but that didn’t prevent him from feeling like an outcast. Everything in that place looked expensive. Funny thing was that he felt the same way he had felt when he had brought home six years back. But this time, he wasn’t the same old boy. He was stronger and courageous.

‘I am not your husband.’ Antonio’s words began haunting him. ‘You’ll leave this house and you’ll never return. You’re a whore and I hate cheaters.’

“Calm down, Travis!” He muttered, taking a deep breath. “You can do this. You’re just trying to help the woman that showed you love.”

He took a deep breath and started going upstairs, still looking around. He could still remember the note that the doctor had given him. Granny’s room was on the second floor, the third room on the left so that was where he was headed.

Travis finally reached the second floor and the first thing he saw was a huge picture of Antonio and Bruce’s wedding. They both seemed so happy, smiling brightly. Antonio had his arms tightly locked around Bruce’s waist while he kissed his cheek and Bruce had his head turned so that his eyes were on Antonio. They seemed happy and there were also several wedding portraits there.

Travis clenched his fist as he felt a sharp vibration to make his body jerk. Seeing that picture made him hurt because it reminded him of his past pain and how Antonio had betrayed him. Antonio had gotten married exactly a year after they got separated. It was like everything had been planned.

***

6 years ago

*

“Can you please wait for a second?” Richard asked as he parked the car. “I have to get something. You must be hungry and I am sure…” He chuckled as his hand rubbed on Travis’ big baby bump. “…my little grandson is also hungry.”

Travis gave a fake smile, nodding. It had been six weeks since his threatened miscarriage and he was yet to recover from the aftermath. His father had been doing all he could to make him happy and although he smiled from time to time, he was still not happy.

“Alright! I’ll be back.” He leaned forward and kissed his son’s cheek. “I know just what to get you.”

Richard left the car and Travis started rubbing on his tummy, enjoying the feeling of having a life growing inside of him. His father had hired a private doctor, who still couldn’t understand how Travis got pregnant. No one except them knew about Travis’ pregnant and Richard had spent millions just to make sure his son was safe.

A smile, a genuine smile popped up Travis’ face when he felt his baby kick. He was suddenly felt with a myriad of emotions and he cried softly, chuckling. He couldn’t believe the emotions that hit him at that moment. It was indeed a moment of joy.

He quickly raised his head, looking towards the direction his father had gone to see if he was coming back. He wanted to tell him the good news. But as soon as he raised his head, he lost the smile on his face. All the joy instantly turned to unbearable pain. His heart ached and a huge lump began forming in his throat. It was painful.

Antonio, the man that he loved limitlessly was coming from the same restaurant his father had gone in. But he was not alone. He was with Bruce and the two of them were kissing. They seemed happy, kissing shamelessly in front of the restaurant. Shit! It hurt like hell.

Bruce’s arms were locked around Antonio’s neck as Antonio’s were on Bruce’s waist. They seemed so happy. How could they be happy, Travis thought as his face got flooded with tears? It had only been six months since Travis left and Antonio was already acting as nothing had ever happened. He was acting like he had been waiting for such a moment for a long time like he was now fully happy? How could he?

Travis rubbed on his tummy as he looked away, using his long hair to shield himself from that painful view. His heart bled and he sobbed quietly, wondering why he was going through all that. It was so painful.

The door to the car opened and…

“Son, what’s going on?” Richard asked, holding his hand. “Are you okay? Is the baby okay?”

“Let’s go!” He muttered, holding on tightly to his father’s hand. “I want to get out of here. Please!”

Richard felt his heart bleed when he saw what made his son weep. He didn’t even waste any time. He drove off, rubbing on his son’s back. Travis was still crying.

“As soon as you give birth, I’m getting you out of here.” Richard sniveled. “I swear, we’ll go far away from all this. We’ll start over alone. I promise!”

Travis didn’t care where. He just wanted to start anew. It was so difficult to forget about everything when all the things in that country reminded him of Antonio and his pain. It was so difficult.

***

Present-day

*

But that didn’t happen at all. Richard died two days after the birth of Sean, leaving a really deep hole in Travis’ heart. For six years, he’d been yearning for his love, his presence. He still dreamt of him and he just wished that he could have gotten at least more time to get to know his father better. He died through all this madness. That was one of the reasons Travis hated Antonio so much. He took his father away from him.

Travis got out of his thoughts and he realized that he had tears on his face. He quickly wiped them, shaking his head.

“No, Travis…” He said softly. “…you’ve cried too much. No more crying. Now it will be someone else’s turn.”

He wiped his face clean and went straight to granny’s room. As soon as he opened the door, granny woke up and she smiled brightly at him. She sat up and then held her hands to him.

“You came!” She smiled brightly. “Antonio told me that you’d come. My angel!”

Travis smiled brightly and rushed to granny, holding her hands. “Yes! I am here to take care of you. But I need you to listen to me, okay?”

Granny nodded. “Anything, as long as you don’t leave me again.”

Travis nodded, kissing the old woman’s hands. He could see just how happy she was and he was happy too. He was gonna make sure that she was back to being the woman she was before he left.

***

Antonio and his family entered the gorgeous mansion and they were all dressed wonderfully and they were all happy. Brandrea was a success and the fashion show had been superb. There had been so many businessmen and women in attendance and they all wanted a piece of Brandrea. The fashion show had been a bomb and both Bruce and Andrea were pretty confident about the outcome. After all, Bruce was one of the models and he had killed it on the runway.

As soon as Antonio stepped inside the house, he had a strange feeling, a really strange one. It was like something was about to happen or something had already happened. He quickly scanned everywhere but didn’t see anyone.

“Granny!” He hollered as he started rushing upstairs. “Granny!”

“Antonio!” Eduardo quickly followed him behind, wondering what was wrong with him. “Bro!”

But Antonio ignored him. He rushed inside granny’s room to get the shock of his life. Granny was seated on the bed and she was with the nurse that had been taking care of her. Granny was having her dinner without any problem and it shocked Antonio. He hadn’t expected that at all.

“Granny!” He rushed to her.

Granny quickly smiled when she saw her grandson. “You look handsome, my baby boy.”

Antonio giggled as he sat by his granny’s side, taking her hand. He was dressed in a beautiful blue striped designer’s suit with a black shirt inside and black shoes. He was looking gorgeous and he had received many compliments that night. But none made him as happy as his granny.

“How are you feeling?”

Granny nodded. “I am alright. My angel took very good care of me.” She said in a perfectly normal voice. “He’s very nice and really beautiful. He told me that… he will be coming more often if I take my medicines on time and not give trouble.”

Antonio chuckled but he was still very curious. “Um, granny… do you know who this angel is?” He asked in a curious tone. “I mean, have you seen him before?”

Granny shook her head, taking a spoonful of her food from the nurse. “I feel I have seen him before but… I don’t remember. I just love him and that’s all.”

Antonio nodded, losing the smile on his face.

‘Who could this person be, someone that doesn’t even want money or to meet me?’ He got lost in his thoughts and he didn’t even realize it. ‘And why do I get this strange feeling that this person knows me already but doesn’t want to be known?’

Antonio was still lost in his thoughts when he felt a hand on his shoulder. It was the nurse and she had a note with her. He quickly took it and then opened it.

‘Just keep to your end of the agreement and I’ll keep on taking care of your grandmother. If you break any of the conditions, our deal will be off. Stay out of my way and they’ll be cooperation.’

Antonio held the note closely, wondering why the boy wanted to be mysterious.

“Err…. Did you see the boy, nurse?”

The nurse shook her head. “Not really. He had just left your granny to rest before I arrived.”

Antonio nodded. “Thanks a lot. Granny…” He looked at his grandmother. “…I’ll be back.”

Granny just nodded and continued taking her food. Antonio found his brother in the doorway and both of them went downstairs where Bruce and Andrea were still celebrating.

“How’s mom?” Emma asked, getting closer to him.

“I don’t know,” Antonio muttered, looking a bit lost. “I’d say she’s better now. She looks normal and she allowed her nurse to feed her today.”

“That’s great!” Emma gasped, touching her chest. “That means she’s getting better. What did…”

“The boy left before the nurse arrived.” Antonio chimed in, taking a seat on the couch.

Celine sighed, rubbing her forehead. “But I don’t understand him. Why does he still insist on not being seen by anyone? He doesn’t want money or anything from us. What if he’s up to something?”

“Who cares?” Andrea shrugged, rolling her eyes. “As long as granny likes him and he doesn’t create trouble for anyone then…. I am okay with it.”

Bruce nodded. “But what if he has a motive? What if he asks for the impossible in the end and…”

“As long as granny is okay, I don’t care.” Antonio rose from the couch. “It doesn’t matter what he wants. It doesn’t even matter who he is. It is none of our business. As I said, I don’t want anyone getting in his way. Whenever he is here, all of us shouldn’t get in his way. Go shopping or something. We’ve got a lot of businesses. You can take active participation in that. But anyone that will cause us to lose granny’s angel will get it from me.”

He left upstairs to change, feeling a little at peace. But he still felt like he wanted to know more about the boy. Who was he?

***

“Okay, baby…” Travis opened his arms widely, falling to his knees. “…come give daddy a kiss.”

Sean rushed to Travis and kissed him right on the lips. Travis chuckled and then held his son in his arms. “How was school, my love?”

“It was nice. But I missed you and I want my chocolate.”

Travis laughed at his son’s words. “I missed you too but guess what…” He paused and kissed on his cheek. “…go to daddy’s room and you’ll find your chocolate on the bed.”

“Yeh!” Sean jumped happily in Travis’ arms.

“Not just yet!” Travis’ face got stern. “What do you say to daddy?”

“I love you, daddy,” Sean giggled, kissing his father on the cheek.

“Love you too.”

He let his son go and smiled and was interrupted by Vanessa clearing her throat. He turned around and found her staring at him with a frown on her face.

“So, how did it go?” She asked in a curious tone. “Do you feel at peace now?”

Travis sighed and then went to his aunt. He took her hands and kissed them, leading her to the living room. “Aunt, I know that you’re really worried about this. But don’t worry, I promise that I am being careful. No one…”

“I just don’t want you to get hurt again.” She was really worried. “I had seen the state you were in six years ago and it nearly killed me. I don’t think my strength will pull me through if…”

“Nothing like that is gonna happen, aunt!” He shook his head. “I am never going to get hurt in the hands of that family ever again. And I don’t want to see you like that anymore. Cheer up, aunt. Forget about me going to that house. It was purely just to make sure that granny gets better. I don’t know how I would have survived in that house without her. At least, I owe that to her.”

Vanessa sighed. “I just want you to be safe.”

“I am.” He hugged her tightly. “Besides, you should be smiling. Our line of shoes and clothes are ready. We are taking them to the store tomorrow morning. And I am sure that ‘Reves’ will just be doing okay.”

“Reves?” Vanessa raised her eyebrow. “That’s dreams in French.”

Travis sighed. “Yes! I created this line because a lot of people have dreams to wear Tonzalez brands but they can’t afford it. That’s why I made them cheap and simple. It will be a dream come true to some people out there.”

Vanessa smiled, cupping his cheeks. “You’re still the same person, Travis. Your father must be very proud of you.”

Travis got emotional and just nodded. He didn’t want to tell Vanessa that he missed Richard because he knew she missed him a lot too. He didn’t wanna bring unnecessary emotions.

***

“Congratulations, you two…” One of the board members said, hugging Andrea and Bruce. “…Brandrea has been a success and it’s only been two days but the sales are impressive.”

Bruce chuckled. “That’s what happens when you know what you’re doing and it’s all about class and sexiness. Nothing can ever go wrong.”

He looked at Andrea and both of them chuckled seductively.

“You truly are Antonio’s sister and husband. Both of you have the talent and you’ve never disappointed.” The woman added. She sounded impressed. Why wouldn’t she be? After all, this was Bruce, a great model, and Antonio’s sister.

“Thank you so much.” Andrea smiled. “Just stick around and I promise that you haven’t seen anything yet.”

The two beauties turned and started cat walking away, wearing those mocking smiles on their faces. They were both dressed in sexy blue attires. Attires was wearing a short blue dress with red high heels and Bruce was wearing a blue sexy jumpsuit, killing it with some sneakers. Both their hairs were in ponytails and their spirits were high that day.

But their joys hit the sky when they saw Travis slowly walking while getting lost in a document that he was holding. He was dressed to kill in a pink and yellow striped shirt that was tucked in a black skinny trouser with cross belts that made him look sexy as hell and gray shoes that graced his feet. He had his long hair in a braided ponytail, revealing his face.

When they saw him, they slowly walked to him with evil grins.

“Hi, Travis….” Andrea said, slightly moving to his ears.

Travis slowly dropped his hands, turning to find the two evil twins staring at him like they just wanted to laugh at him. But he didn’t even say anything. He rather just looked at them, wishing they could go away.

“How’s your brand doing, Travis?” Andrea asked mockingly, trying her best not to laugh. But she didn’t know for how long it was gonna hold. “We heard it’s… underwhelming just like you!”

Travis grinned. “Well, the line has just been released so the current sales don’t mean that it won’t do well. I think all that we need is a little more time and everything will be fine.”

“Current sales?” Bruce laughed, getting closer. “Well, those are excuses. There is absolutely nothing. You haven’t sold a single piece for two days. Why don’t you just admit that you’re just like your shoes, cheap and unworthy?”

“Excuse me!” Travis said in mock astonishment. “Are you supposed to be funny right now, Bruce? If I were you, I wouldn’t be so confident. And just because something is cheap doesn’t mean that it’s unworthy. Some people find gold, satisfaction, peace, and joy in cheap things. That’s why some things considered cheap are always the priority.” He added, dropping his neck like he was in pleasure. “I know of some things or rather some people who consider themselves expensive but they’re second rates.” He said in a flirtatious voice.

Suddenly, Bruce didn’t find it funny anymore. All the joy in his heart melted away, replaced by terrible anger. His breaths became harsh and he clenched his fists, feeling his heart pounding sharply in his chest. He was so pissed because he knew Travis was talking about him. He was talking about his marriage to Antonio.

“How dare you?” He roared. “Who do you think you are to talk to me like that?”

“Why?” Travis shrugged, rubbing on his temple like he was thinking of something. “Are you guilty or something? I was just trying to make you understand a point. And besides, I don’t think you have what it takes to give me advice on this matter. Sure, you’re pretty smart, Bruce but when it comes to designing, I don’t think you have what it takes to give me advice on that.”

“And you think you are better than us?” Bruce glowered, his voice getting higher. He was starting to hyperventilate. “You don’t stand a chance because your brand is still out there and it isn’t doing shit.”

“But there’s nothing wrong in trying,” Travis said simply, opening his arms like he was expecting a hug. “If that’s the case then why waste time with your petty comments if you have nothing to fear when it comes to that?”

“That’s right!” Andrea agreed. “We’ve got nothing to fear because our brands will bring billions to this company. As it is, we have many clients already demanding Brandrea. We’re not afraid of what you can do. We’re just saving you from future embarrassments. That is all. So that you can still have your dignity.

Travis gave a half-smile, shaking his head. “Thanks for your advice but I don’t need it. And if you guys are done trying to make me feel better, then I have somewhere to go. Excuse me!”

When he left, the two friends laughed loudly because they’d won already.

***

Travis was looking at the figures for their sales and he wasn’t impressed at all. They hadn’t sold a single piece since they released the brand. It was somehow scary and he felt like he had lost all the resources he had used. He had expected sales to be slow but not standing still for two whole days.

“Come on, guys…” He gave a gloomy sigh, looking at some of the interns there. They looked sad and hopeless. “What are we doing wrong?”

“We don’t know, sir!” Lizzy, the oldest blonde intern muttered, her eyes on the floor. “We’ve been in this store for two days now and everyone that comes in here just looks at them and buy other things, expensive things.”

Travis felt terrible. He felt terrible. He was at one of Tonzalez blue fashion shop which was located in a big chain store and he had thought that it was gonna help but it didn’t.

“What do we do, sir?” They asked.

Travis didn’t know how to help his team. He could tell that they were all shattered and he to find a way out soon. Travis sighed as he took a walk around the shop, trying to figure a way out. But as he was moving, praying to the almighty to provide a way for him, his eyes caught something. It was a little girl who was with her mother. She was staring through the window outside, pointing at the shoes, admiring them. But that was all she was doing.

Seeing that beautiful scene, Travis rushed to his team and then went with positive energy.

“Guys, I think we’re not doing anything wrong.” He hollered, clapping his hands hard. “The only problem is that the target market is afraid of coming inside here. Tonzalez blue is known for its production of classy and expensive brands. To them, everything here is expensive. But if they can’t come to us, then we’ll go to them.”

Everybody was confused. But they got the whole thing when Travis started taking some of their brands outside, putting them on the floor, right outside the shop. The interns started helping him and they got all their brands outside. Then Travis even did something crazier. He started shouting, calling the customers, and shouting the prices just like street vendors and he was so loud.

It didn’t take long and customers started coming quickly, buying the shoes and clothes in bulk. It was amazing and the interns were impressed. They hadn’t thought that someone as rich and beautiful as Travis would try that.

They helped him out and in just a matter of minutes, the entire place was crowded with different people, especially people from the lower and middle class. Travis and his team sold so much that they couldn’t even believe that happened.

***

From that day sales continued increasing and the demand for the brand was nothing like Travis had ever imagined it could be. They used to go out in the streets to sell, promote their brand, and also sale them at even cheaper prices. Travis was more than happy. Orphanages, non-governmental organizations, some companies, and even individuals ordered more and more goods. The sales each day were getting higher and Travis never ceased to thank his team. They were now considered the best at the company.

Travis was managing his life, from taking care of his son, spending time with him to taking care of granny, making sure that she was alright. And of course, in addition to his own companies which were also demanding more of him, it was such work. But he was thankful he had Vanessa by his side. She helped him a lot and his companies were rising.

And of course, Antonio was still giving him the same trouble as always. He wasn’t surprised though…. But everything was going the way it was supposed to be and he loved it so much.

***

2 Weeks later

*

Travis was walking gracefully inside Tonzalez blue, wearing that smile that made people fantasize about him. Every worker was watching him, talking among themselves with grins on their faces. He could hear moans from some of them and he smiled, even more, waving at them. He was happy.

He was wearing a dark blue designer’s shirt tucked in black skinny jeans with brown shoes on his feet. He had his hair into braids and he was looking sexy. Everyone that saw him probably creamed their panties. That was how sexy he was looking for. But he was a happy soul.

He went to the conference room and as soon as he entered, a balloon popped and people started cheering. Travis chuckled as he looked all around the conference room, wondering what was going. The entire conference room was filled with decorations, beautiful but simple decorations, and flowers. There was a huge cake on the table and he also noticed that his entire team was in that room.

“Oh my God,” He gasped, smiling at the people while holding his cheeks. “What’s going on?”

“We’re celebrating you.” Paul rushed to him, kissed his cheek, and gave him a bouquet.

“Me?” He was confused. “What have I done?”

“What have you not done?” Paul sighed, wrapping an arm around Travis. “You’ve brought us a contract that’s what. We just received a big fish this morning. He has offered us a 500 million dollar contract and all because of your brand. He was very impressed and aside from that…” Paul paused and looked into the eyes of the beautiful boy. “…since the release of your brand, it has recorded the highest number of sales ever seen at this company. Isn’t that reason enough to celebrate?”

Everyone was now clapping again.

“Come here!” Paul took him to the table where the cake was. He gave him a well-decorated knife, holding his hand sweetly. “Now why don’t you cut this cake so that we can celebrate together?”

Travis glanced at Paul and then took the knife from him. He cut the cake into pieces as everyone else clapped cheerfully, some of the whistling. Travis thanked his team and fed them the cake. He was really happy.

Meanwhile, Bruce and Andrea were standing near a corner and they were so pissed. Their blood was boiling and they were so, so mad. They just wanted to grip those braids on his head, pull on them, and strangle him with them. That’s how mad they were. They couldn’t believe that someone like Travis had just outsmarted them and now they had to watch him celebrate his success. It was painful. They just wished Antonio had been there. But he had gone to an important meeting and he was yet to arrive.

“Hey there!” Travis greeted, waving at the two of them. “How’s it going? Why are you standing there? I brought you some cake so that you can join in on our celebration.”

Travis tried to feed Andrea the cake but she quickly gripped his hand. “Over my dead body would I eat anything from your hands?” She hissed, pushing his hand away. “I would rather eat poison than do that.”

“Oh really!” Travis’ eyes opened. “Bruce?” He asked but Bruce rolled his eyes and looked away. “Okay.” He took the piece of cake and ate it in front of them, licking his fingers while moaning. “Delicious! Do you know what else tastes delicious right now? Your failure!”

Andrea furiously dropped her arms. “Don’t celebrate just yet!” She snapped, pointing his finger at him. Luckily, everyone else was busy celebrating to notice what was going on. “You haven’t won anything. That was just beginner’s luck, Travis.”

“Beginner’s luck?” Travis laughed. “Just accept it, Andrea. Your designs were inferior and that’s why they failed. No matter what you or your brother in law can do, I’ll always be ready for you Andrea. One thing I can tell you is that… now, you’re gonna have to work really hard to prove yourself.”

“How dare you?” Andrea rolled. “This is my company and…”

“And I am a shareholder!” Travis chimed in. “I own part of it. I am also a board member and so… whatever you say to me doesn’t matter. You were so confident in your designs and you even had a fashion show for it. What happened?”

Andrea clenched her fists. She was so mad that she was breathing like an evil queen from a fairytale story.

“Anyway, good luck!”

He turned and left the two of them there.

“Uh…” Andrea groaned, furiously stamping her foot on the floor. “I hate that bitch. He’ll pay for this, I swear. He’s gonna pay.”

Bruce didn’t say anything but what he had in his mind was pure evil.

***

Antonio took a sip of his coffee, sitting comfortably in his comfy chair with his legs on the table. He was feeling at peace and he even had a smile on his face. He had just been from recording one of his songs and he felt really happy.

“Wow!” Ethan said in surprise when he entered the office. “Is this you right now? Are you smiling?”

Antonio looked at his friend and laughed. “Is there any reason to be sad? I feel a bit at peace. Granny is doing okay, I just recorded a song and…”

“And you just got a new contract!” Ethan chimed in as he took a seat on the table, grinning at his friend.

Antonio sighed gloomily, losing his smile. “I don’t wanna talk about that, Ethan.” He didn’t want anything to remind him of Travis or Praveen. “I don’t even care about that fucking contract.”

“Are you sure?” Ethan asked, rubbing on his chin. “Do you not care about the contract or you are just upset that the reason for that contract is Travis?” He got off the table and walked to his friend. “I know of your hatred for Praveen, my brother and I understand you. He had hurt all of us and all of us probably feel the same…”

“He didn’t just hurt me!” Antonio clenched his fists, hitting them hard on the table. “That boy ripped my very soul and whatever reminds me of him makes me fume.”

“But Travis…” Ethan sighed, shaking his head. “…I haven’t interacted with him but from whatever you guys say, he acts differently from Praveen. Don’t you think…”

“I don’t give a damn whether he’s Praveen or Travis. That boy makes me fume whenever I see him.” He rolled, getting off the chair. “Everything about him, his face, his body, and even the way he smiles reminds me of that cheater. It is unacceptable to me and as long as he is in my company, he’s gonna have to deal with me.” He vowed, furiously looking at his friend.

Ethan raised his hands like he was surrendering. He didn’t wanna make his friend more upset. “Anyway, are you going to the party tonight?”

“Am I?” Antonio laughed at the top of his voice. “Of course, I am going. And you’re coming with me.”

“Wouldn’t miss it for the world,” Ethan said abruptly, shaking his head. “That party is like royalty, only comes once in a year. I get to mingle with my fellow businessmen plus…” He opened his arms widely, winking at Antonio. “…I get to meet some cuties there and if I am lucky, I might get laid tonight.”

Antonio burst into laughter. “You’re insane. Get out of here!” He took a book and threw it right at Ethan.

Ethan dodged the book and laughed, quickly moving away from his friend. “You’re crazy. But you’ll need to go early. You know that many people go there just so that they can have an interaction with you.”

Antonio laughed, shaking his head. He watched as his friend left and then went back to his work. At least, for that day he just wanted to be away from Tonzalez blue so that he could save himself from the headache of seeing Travis. The guy had been at the company for three freaking weeks but Antonio’s hatred and anger continued growing. Or was it?

***

As expected that day, the entire five-star hotel was sparkling with gold and silver decors, expensive flowers, and all the food and entertainment. The annual business party was finally here, the party that was held by the governor himself where businessmen and politicians met just to mingle and party, away from their businesses. It was always the party that everyone was looking forward to. And it was only attended by powerful businessmen and politicians. It was always a party to look forward to.

This time, the governor had gone the extra mile by hosting the party at one of the best five-star hotel’s main hall in the city. Everything was classy and there was even a red carpet this time where numerous people from media were busy capturing every moment. Even magazine companies had sent their people for the bigger story.

Expensive, gorgeous cars were arriving were big businessmen, single married and dating came out with their dates that night, except for a few that were just alone. Celebrities arrived and the media had their cameras rolling to capture them. That night everyone was dressed to kill in designer clothes, ranging from suits to classy skinny jeans to beautiful gowns worn by the ladies and different hairstyles. It was going to be a night to remember.

But suddenly, the moment everyone had been waiting for arrived. A big, red, and beautiful limousine arrived and parked right there and people were already screaming in excitement. All the cameras, the media, and almost everyone’s eyes shifted to the big car. People had their cameras ready and their hearts were already racing.

The guard quickly got out of the car and rushed to open the door. He was dressed smartly in a black suit. He opened the door and bowed for his master and before the master even came out, cameras were already shattering. And when he finally got out, the media surrounded him, trying to take their best shot. They couldn’t have enough of him.

Antonio Gonzalez was always one of the people everyone was looking forward to seeing at such parties. For the last six years since he started attending the annual party, he’d been slaying it on the carpet and everyone there got a chance to see the sexy hunk.

Antonio Gonzalez was dressed in a pitch-black designer’s tuxedo with what looked to be golden stripes on the jacket running vertically. He had a red shirt inside with a bowtie and black shoes. His hair was well gelled and then combed backward, revealing his gorgeous face on which he wore a smile. He looked expensive, smelled expensive, and had many people horny there. They took all the pictures that they could.

But of course, as expected, Antonio was graced by his loving husband who was equally killing it since he was a model and all. He was wearing a red designer’s tight trousers, a blue designer’s tuxedo with a black shirt inside a bowtie like his husband. His white sparkly shoes were adorable and he had his hair made into many braids. He was happy and he was holding on to his husband like he just wanted to be a part of him, literally warning every idiot there to back off.

And of course, cameras were also rolling for Antonio’s sister and her date for that evening, Ethan. She was wearing a beautiful blue, sparkly gown that showed her curves. It was long, touched the ground but had a long slit too from half her thigh down. She had silver sparkly high heels on her feet and her hair was all curled and loose. She had expensive jewelry on her and being with a man as handsome as Ethan, she was happy as fuck. Ethan was dressed in a red tuxedo with a green shirt inside and yellow shoes.

Antonio slowly walked to the entrance of the auditorium, busy waving at the smiling people. He was really happy and this time, he was sure that nothing was gonna ruin that happiness for him. At least, he deserved a night of forgetting about his troubles.

“And there’s my handsome celebrity!” The governor hollered, opening his arms widely when he saw Antonio.

Antonio gave him a tight hug, patting on his back. The governor was a man in his mid-50s and one of the most powerful businessmen in the country. He was dressed beautifully in a black designer’s suit, white shirt inside, and pitch-black shoes. His hair was completely removed but he slew his baldness and he looked younger that way. He had gray eyes and a cute rounded face.

“I am looking forward to you performing tonight, Antonio.” The governor commented, powerfully shaking the young man’s hands. “I mean, what’s the purpose of having a great celebrity if I don’t get to enjoy him, right?”

Antonio laughed, nodding. “I agree but maybe next time. I didn’t come prepared. Just look…”

“I know that excuse was coming.” The governor laughed. “But at least, you’ll have to dance, right? They’ll be a great performance tonight and I expect you to dance with the celebrity dancers. Show them how it’s done.”

Antonio scratched his head, trying to find the right answer to give the man. “If you say so then…” He paused and smiled. “…I will do that for you.”

“Great! And Bruce darling…” He leaned forward and pecked the fashion gold. “…you look ravishing tonight.”

“Thank you so much, governor!” Bruce blushed, clinging to his husband even more.

“You’re welcome and tonight…” The governor pointed. “…I expect you guys to sit on the table with me. And tonight… I have an important…”

But the governor didn’t even finish his sentence as people starting gasping…

Whoa! Wow! OMG! Those were the words that people were using. It was like something had suddenly gotten their attention. Even the media people that had been taking pictures of Antonio and the governor rushed away from there, making Antonio wonder where they were going. But when he turned to see what everyone was looking at…. He was blown away.

For a second, time stood still and Antonio felt his heart begin to race… his eyes couldn’t move away from that view… everything disappeared and he even forgot how to breathe. It was suddenly cold and at first, Antonio felt that coldness hit his legs, and then it went all the way up to his spine. He couldn’t help the moan that escaped his lips. He bit his lips as suddenly, his emotions got mixed up. He didn’t know what he felt anymore.

All eyes, all cameras were on that boy who looked like the god of fashion. Shit! Antonio’s head was spinning as he looked at the fashion beauty that was busy smiling as he walked down the red carpet, slaying every move that he did.

He was wearing a tight, expensive-looking designer’s tight white, silvery trouser that showed his gorgeous, feminine curves and a white long-sleeved designer’s white shirt that was also tucked in. But it had what looked to be a long cape that reached the floor but at the same time, it looked like a train. He looked classy, sexy, godly, and kingly. He had beautiful white shoes on his feet with no stockings. His hair was made into a long braided ponytail with gold and silver bands and a little untouched hair in front. He took people’s hearts away and with that smile on his face, even Antonio couldn’t help but stare.

Bruce on the other hand lost the smile on his face, replaced by a huge frown. He looked at his husband and could tell that he was lost just by staring at that boy. He hissed silently, feeling like he was about to burst from anger.

Travis walked sexily to where the governor stood. He knew that Antonio was staring at him and he also saw that devilish look on Bruce’s face but he ignored it. He just reached the governor and the man hugged him tightly and kissed both his cheeks.

“Wow, you look really beautiful!” The governor commented. He too couldn’t help but feel some lust for the boy. “Thanks for honoring my invitation.”

“I wouldn’t have missed it for the world,” Travis said with a sexy grin. “It’s not every day that you get to mingle with a man like you.”

“And it’s not every day one gets to be in the presence of such beauty. It is an honor.” He bowed and kissed Travis’ hand right in front of the watchful eyes and Antonio too. Antonio couldn’t help but feel a wave of jealous hit him. He didn’t even realize it did.

“Your father was a great friend of mine.” The governor lost the smile on his face. “We had known each other before I even became governor and he helped me a lot. He was a powerful businessman and he shall be remembered as one. I am sorry that I didn’t attend his funeral. I was out of the country at that time.”

Travis smiled sheepishly, trying to mask his emotions. “It’s okay. He was a great man. He was my hero.”

The governor smiled, coiling his arm with the pretty boy. “Come, let me introduce you to…”

“Antonio Gonzalez!” Travis chimed in, staring at the man that was looking at him like a piece of food. “What a coincidence. I never thought we’d meet here.”

“Neither did we,” Bruce said hoarsely.

“What? You know each other…”

Travis looked at Antonio and gave him a wink. “He’s my business partner.” He said a little loudly. “I am one of the shareholders of Tonzalez blue.”

“That makes it all better.” The governor rubbed his hands. “Shall we get this party started?”

“Sure!” Travis nodded.

They all started moving inside but Bruce had another plan. He moved away from Antonio, got behind him, and then stepped right on Travis train. Travis felt it and he stopped without even turning back. He knew exactly what had happened.

“Oh!” Bruce chuckled in mock, walking towards Travis. “Sorry, I stepped on your long, tacky… metallic dress….” He laughed.

Travis turned and pulled his train away from Bruce, losing the smile on his face.

“And come to think of it…” Bruce rubbed on his lips. “…are you gonna sweep the floor?” He laughed. “You’re so thoughtful because we really could use a maid here.”

Travis grinned, looking at Bruce’s attire from head to toe and then up again. He scoffed, shaking his head. “For a person who regards himself high in the fashion world, Bruce…” He laughed, getting closer. “…I must say I am very disappointed with your outfit. I expected more from you and not dress up like you picked up that outfit from one of the rejects of the fashion world.”

He angrily turned and left laughing.

“We’ll see who will be laughing in the end.” Bruce groaned, his fists clenching. “I am gonna make sure that you feel out of place at this party.”

He laughed and followed behind. After all, he needed to guard his husband against the likes of Travis. They were hungry men.

***

“Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention, please!” The governor announced through the microphone. “First of all, thank you so much for coming here tonight. I appreciate your presence here. Let me introduce to you our guest of honor.” He stretched his hand, smiling brightly. “Mr. Travis Marasigan, son and heir of Richard Marasigan.”

To say Travis was surprised would be an understatement. He was definitely beyond shocked. He hadn’t expected the governor to announce that. He chuckled, got up from where he was seated, and went to the front where the governor stood. There were cheers as he walked to the front with people commenting on his beauty.

The governor gave the microphone away as he welcomed Travis and kissed his cheek. He then coiled his arm with him and started going towards everyone, introducing him to the most important people at that party. Travis was honored by the respect that everyone gave him. He was happy.

“Wow, you’re truly an image of your father.” One of the politician friends of the governor commented. “Very, very beautiful. I know that we’ll enjoy doing business with you.”

“Thank you so much!” Travis smiled, shaking the man and his wife’s hands.

He greeted several people, moving at the tables where they sat. Most young men there joked about seeing themselves with him on dates and he laughed with them. He just liked the fact that no one talked to him rudely. He felt accepted by them. But he didn’t miss the evil eyes of Bruce and Andrea from afar and Antonio’s eyes were also on him.

“Excuse me!” He said to the governor.

Then he started walking away because he wanted to make a call to his aunt, check on his little son. He knew how Sean could be at times, especially when he wasn’t home at night. Travis didn’t go far as he felt someone pull his arm.

He felt his heart race when he just looked into the eyes of the very person that he loved so much in his past, Ethan. Travis felt a wave of emotions sweep him off his feet and he gasped, trying his best not to act like an emotional fool.

“Hi!” Ethan slightly waved, giving a sheepish smile. “I am so sorry for that but… I couldn’t help it. You look so much like him. You look like Praveen.”

Travis smiled softly. “I am sorry, you got me mistaken for someone else. I am not Praveen. My name is Travis Marasigan.”

Ethan couldn’t help but get emotional. He remembered the last time he saw Praveen. He’d been so broken. He also remembered how he had answered the boy when he had asked him to believe him.

“Now I know exactly why they’re all…”

“I am sorry.” Travis apologized. He didn’t wanna talk to Ethan rudely. “My name is Travis and not Praveen. Excuse me!”

With those words, he left the man looking shocked. Ethan was now confused. Those eyes, the body, and that face, they were all Praveen’s. But the way he talked, walked and his hair was completely different. But Ethan would have bet his left ball that that was Praveen. He had seen something in his eyes when he was talking to him and he knew that the guy recognized him.

He rushed to the table where Antonio was standing, drowning himself in booze. He was drinking like an idiot, taking glass after glass. That was how his night had just turned out to be, worse. Travis had once again managed to ruin his party night just like he had done the first time he saw him.

“Hey, what are you doing?” Ethan quickly took the glass away from him. “Are you trying to kill yourself or something?”

“Maybe that’s what I am trying to do.” Antonio’s voice was low but yet so cold. “I don’t understand how he does it. He always manages to ruin my mood whenever I see him, giving me more fire for this hatred that I have. Once again, when I thought I could take a break from that… that…” He grimaced but couldn’t say the word.

“Calm down.” Ethan rubbed on his friend’s back. “Maybe we should get out of here.”

“And let him win?” Antonio chuckled bitterly. “No fucking way. I am gonna show him that he doesn’t do shit to me. He can pretend all he wants but I don’t give a hoot. I am gonna show him that I have moved on.”

He took the entire bottle and started drinking it but Ethan took that away from him too.

“You’re starting to act like an idiot for a man that isn’t affected by what that boy is doing.” Ethan furiously put the bottle on the table and pulled his friend away from there. “Can you get yourself together? You’re probably the most famous man here and if anyone sees you drinking like a fool, a scandal might arise. Come on, let’s go and have some fun.”

He took his friend and they started going towards were a couple of their friends were having fun. But before they reached there, the lights went completely out, leaving everywhere dark. People started wondering what was going on but it didn’t take long and faint lights turned on followed by bright lights on the front stage right before “on the floor,’ started playing.

Antonio quickly turned and saw the celebrity dancers beautifully positioned, dressed in sparkly clothes.

“Oh yeah!” The lead man, a celebrity singer said in the microphone.

Just then, the stage opened revealing a gorgeous person with one hand in the air as the stage brought him up. He was dressed in a pink designer’s skinny jeans, a white shirt, and black sneakers. His long hair was just loose and Antonio felt goosebumps suddenly and his gut told him things but he didn’t wanna believe it.

‘It’s a new generation, of party people.’ A sweet voice sang.

The man quickly turned and Antonio felt his heart jump in his throat. It was Travis, dressed like a beautiful dancer with his hair being blown backward, revealing his cute face. He had a big earphone that reached his mouth as he smiled brightly, attracting a lot of cheers.

Antonio froze again, staring at that beautiful body.

‘Let me introduce you, to my party people in the club!’ He sang, getting people’s attention.

Now almost everyone had their phones out, capturing the once in a lifetime moment. But Antonio was frozen and his heart pounded so hard in his chest that it almost felt like he was gonna have a heart attack.

The handsome man started rapping and the celebrity dancers got on their feet and gave a gorgeous dance. Travis just stood still, smiling at the man that was staring at him like he wanted to kiss him. Pablo was one of the best rappers and Travis was happy he did that song with him.

Where Bruce stood, he felt his life flash before him. He didn’t even realize that the glass he had been holding was now on the floor, broken to pieces. He couldn’t believe what kind of a showoff Travis was. He was so mad and his breaths became heavy. The same was happening to Andrea. She couldn’t believe that wherever she went, the spotlight was always on Travis. She had had it with him. She needed to do something.

‘If you go hard you gotta get on the floor!’ Travis sang as he started moving his body sexily. “If you’re a party flick your step on the floor…

If you’re an animal then tail on the floor, break your sweat on the floor… Yeah, we work on the floor…. On the floor….

Don’t stop, keep it moving Put your drinks up.”

Travis moved his body, showing his gorgeous dance moves just as the guy wrapped one of his hands around his waist, moving with him. Cheers could be heard from the crowd as they danced to the rhythm.

‘Keep your body up and drop it on the floor,

Let the rhythm change your world, on the floor…

You know we’re running tonight on the floor… Brazil, Morocco, landing to Ibiza… straight to the radio, break it to Africa.’

Travis then dropped in the man’s arms and the man leaned down like he wanted to kiss him while his hands caressed the beautiful face. Antonio felt a lump in his throat. “Fuck!” He muttered, clenching his fists.

‘Dance the night away, live your life and say you’re on the floor…

Dance the night away, grab somebody drink a little more…..

La la la la la…’ They all sang together.

Then the real dance started. The way they danced, especially Travis was so professional and marvelous that Jennifer Lopez herself would have been jealous. Damn, Antonio was jealous. The guy now had both his hands around Travis’ waist, moving together with him and Travis seemed to be enjoying. Antonio could have sworn the guy was shoving his crotch in Travis and it somehow made him mad.

“Shit!” Antonio swore, ripping his eyes away from that scene.

‘I know you got it clap your hands on the floor…” Travis sang as he walked sexily down the stage to where the audience was.

He was staring right at Antonio who was standing just closer to the stage, looking all lost.

‘And keep on rocking, rock it up on the floor.

If you’re a criminal, kill it on the floor. Spill it quick on the floor.’

The next thing Antonio felt was a hand sweetly touching his chest just before everyone cheered. He quickly raised his face to stare into the most beautiful eyes he’d ever had the pleasure of looking into. They were staring right into his and he could feel something moving inside of him, a certain warmth.

‘It’s getting ill, it’s getting sick on the floor.

We never quit, we never rest on the floor.’

There were loud cheers and whistles all around as Travis slammed his body into Antonio, dancing and moving his ass like a stripper. It was too hot and too much for Antonio. He suppressed a moan but too late as he moaned and sweat broke like he’d been standing in the sun for a long time.

The dance just too mere seconds but Travis could feel Antonio’s cock pulsing in his pants and he had to move away, grinning like an evil warrior as he went back to the stage. He even had the pleasure of glancing at Bruce. Man, the man was so mad that he had tears in his eyes. He wanted to cry and kill him at the same time.

‘Dance the night away, live your life and say you’re on the floor…

Dance the night away, grab somebody drink a little more…..

La la la la la…’

Travis was now back on the stage and dancing like he was competing with someone. But it looked really cute and sexy. Antonio didn’t even realize that he was so hard. He couldn’t believe Travis had just done that to him. It left him shocked.

Travis and the celebrity dancers ended with a bang. People were now clapping for them. Travis was happy. The celebrity dancers left together with Travis and Antonio remained shocked, watching as the boy left the stage.

“Dude, are you okay?” Ethan asked, resting his hand on his shoulder.

Antonio slowly looked at his friend, nodding.

“Yeah, I am so sorry about that.”

Antonio laughed, taking a sip of the wine in his glass. “You didn’t do this. Plus, I am not even bothered about it.” Of course, he was bothered about it and Travis was gonna pay.

There was a moment of silence and then Antonio saw Travis walking to the governor now dressed completely different but looking sexy. He was wearing an all-green outfit, a green shirt inside that was tucked in a sexy tight green trouser with a green blazer and he looked like a prince with a high sleek ponytail. When Antonio saw him, he put his glass on the table, fixed himself, and started going towards him. He was gonna show him that he wasn’t called Antonio Gonzalez for nothing.

Before he reached there, ‘Burst your windows,’ By Jasmine Sullivan started playing.

People moved to the dance floor and started the traditional tango dance. Meanwhile, Antonio reached his destination and…

“Excuse me, Mr. Marasigan?” He said softly, one hand at his back.

Travis lost the smile on his face, slowly turning to find a great surprise. Antonio had his hand stretched, asking for his, “Can I have this dance?”

Travis raised an eyebrow, looking at that hand and then at Antonio. “I am sorry, please dance with someone else.” He said rudely, turning to face the governor.

“I am only asking you for one dance.” Antonio was wearing that seductive smile on his face, the one that Travis found annoying. “There’s no harm in that right?”

“Not at all.” Travis nodded. “But I just don’t wanna dance with you. Governor…” He took the old man’s hand, holding it tightly. “…I believe I promised you a dance. Shall we?”

The governor put his glass down. “Why not? Sorry, young man…” He patted on Antonio’s hand. “…perhaps next time.”

Antonio laughed as he watched Travis and the governor hit the dance floor. The governor had his hand tightly on Travis’ waist while one of Travis’ hands was on the governor’s shoulder. Then both of them were holding their free hands which were also stretched as they both joined in the tango dance. And Travis was such a great dancer. They looked so good with the governor on the dance floor, going with the floor. People couldn’t help but take pictures.

“Hi, baby…” Bruce rested his hand on his shoulder, smiling like a horny idiot. “…why are you standing there all alone? Let’s join in the dance? I wanna dance with you, my love.”

“Sure!” Antonio nodded, taking his husband’s hand.

Both of them joined the dance floor, closer to Travis and the governor. Both of them were pretty good too. Bruce felt alive like he was in heaven. His heart raced as he danced with his husband, looking into his face… staring at those sexy lips that he wanted to kiss so bad in front of Travis. He glanced at Travis who was busy dancing with the governor.

Travis on the other hand had no idea what Antonio was up to. He knew that the guy had followed him on the floor. But he wasn’t gonna allow him to ruin that dance for him. He danced so well and the governor too was a great dancer.

The moment came when the governor had to spin the young man. Travis quickly spun and the shocking thing happened. As soon as Antonio saw him turning, he quickly left Bruce and that was how the beautiful boy found himself in the arms of his stupid ex-husband.

“What?” Bruce felt his heart shatter when his husband left him like an idiot on the dance floor.

He groaned, stamped his foot on the floor, and stormed out. He had never been so mad in his life before and if he thought he hated Travis before, what he felt at that moment was beyond hatred. He wasn’t gonna let it go.

The governor on the other hand laughed and left, shaking his head. He wasn’t mad but rather happy.

Travis frowned when he felt Antonio’s hand on his waist pulling him closer while the other one held his hand a little bit higher. He hesitantly placed his hand on Antonio’s shoulder, feeling a bit nervous. He knew the guy was up to something. But the two men kept on dancing.

“Relax!” Antonio teased, locking his eyes with Travis. He had an evil grin on his face. “It’s obvious you don’t wanna dance with me. I wonder why. A little while ago, you were busy dancing with me or rather on me.”

Travis scoffed. “Because you scare me.” He said hoarsely. “And most definitely, I don’t like you, Mr. Gonzalez.”

Antonio laughed bitterly. “That makes the two of us, Mr. Marasigan. But I don’t know why the fuck you follow me everywhere. It’s like you just can’t stay away from me. Are you attracted to me like that? You always manage to ruin my mood.”

“Don’t be so sure of yourself…” Travis sassed, giving the man angry eyes. “…you’re the last man on this planet I’d consider ever dating. I’d rather die a single man.”

Antonio laughed, slowly turning Travis. Now he was holding his waist on one side while staring into his eyes. “And that stunt you just pulled back there.” They were now back in the same position they had been in. “Whenever someone tries shit with me, I always come back with a vengeance. I already told you that as long as you decide to stay at my company, I am gonna get my revenge on you for what that cheater did to me.” He glowered, feeling anger rising deep within him. “Whatever you tell me, to me you’ll always be Praveen.”

Travis laughed softly, not even stopping to dance, Antonio wasn’t gonna ruin his night. “You know, I am not surprised he left you…” Travis turned, feeling Antonio’s body behind him. He had his hand on the guy’s thigh as they slowly moved to the rhythm. “…I completely understand him. I don’t know how anybody can stand you. You deserved everything you got. I guess he did the right thing in leaving you.”

Shit! Antonio felt pain hit his body like a storm. Anger slipped through him slowly and he turned Travis’ head to the point where their lips were only inches away. Both their breaths were becoming harsh.

“Are you saying that I deserved to be cheated on?” Antonio fumed. “How dare you!”

“You can interpret it in whichever you want.” Travis retorted. “I don’t care about your past. No one deserves a man like you. Not to talk about ending up with you, I wouldn’t even do a thing as simple as kiss you because you disgust me!”

Antonio roared, furiously turning Travis, and then did the unthinkable… As soon as Travis turned and faced him, he locked both his arms around that hot waist, bring his body closer. And before Travis even realized what was going on, Antonio locked his lips with his and kissed him hard, an explosive kiss that left their hearts racing.

Travis felt his body shudder in pain when he felt Antonio’s lips on him. He quickly tore his lips away from Antonio, furiously broke away from him, and gave him two hot slaps on his cheek. Antonio looked away, putting his hands on his hips. The slaps were so painful and they evolved a wave of anger in him that was unquenchable. The look he gave Travis was deadly but Travis too was mad.

Many people saw what had happened and they started watching.

“This dance is over!” Travis sneered, clenching his fists. “I have to go.”

He left the man standing there and as soon as he turned, tears started rolling down his face. Antonio watched the boy as he left and through all that anger, there was something inside of him that made him weak, something that wanted him to follow Travis. But he couldn’t. He just turned and stormed out of the hall with Ethan following behind, calling him. But he didn’t even answer.

Meanwhile, Travis rushed to the men’s room, locked the door, and broke down. It was so painful and he felt like being hurt all over again. His face was wet with tears and his pain was just too much. As if that wasn’t enough, he started having flashbacks of his past.

He remembered the first time Antonio had kissed his lips, how he had felt… the weakness… the excitement… the strength and also the many emotions that had taken control of him. He felt his body vibrate and he also remembered the kiss Antonio had given him just a few minutes back. Through all that pain, he could still feel weak. It was too much.

‘I love you and I’ll never hurt you.’ Antonio’s words rang through him. ‘I promise to always stand by you.’

He remembered the day the bastard had taken his virginity in the rain and how he had made him feel that night and he cried even more. He was being quiet because he didn’t want anyone to hear him.

‘I was ready to give up everything for you but you betrayed me, you whore…. I don’t love you. The only one I have ever love is Bruce. I don’t want to ever see your face again.’

He cried, rubbing his lips. But when he looked at his reflection in the mirror, he saw someone weak and vulnerable. He saw Praveen in there and not Travis.

“What am I doing here?” He thought. “Why did Antonio do that despite all the hatred he says he has for me? Nevertheless, I will never forgive Antonio for what he did to me.” He started rubbing his tears slowly. “You used me and took my love for granted. You heartlessly deceived me, I will make you pay for everything, Antonio.”

Although he was rubbing his tears, they were still coming out.

“For all the hurt, the pain and all the suffering I went through.” He vowed, clenching on his fist. “You will pay for this. I can never trust you or love you again, Antonio. I will never allow you to come back into my life again or even break my heart again. I swear!”

He took some tissue, cleaned his face, and make sure that he looked fine. Then he got out of the bathroom although he wasn’t completely fine. He just needed to get out of there and go back to his son. He needed to be with his son because he missed him so much.

Travis got out of the bathroom and could feel that the party was not lively anymore. He took a deep breath and started heading towards the exit, wearing a stern face.

Meanwhile, Bruce was at a table nearby, drowning in alcohol while feeling like crying. All that was in his mind was seeing his husband’s lips on Travis’. He felt like crushing something, hitting something, anything. His heart was pounding in pain and he just wished Travis had died. Andrea had tried to console him but it didn’t work. So she just sat with her arms folded watching him.

Bruce wiped the sweat off his forehead and was just about to take another glass when his eyes caught Travis. As soon as his eyes landed on him, he felt a pain that he couldn’t suppress and his hatred just went overboard. He furiously groaned and rushed to the boy, his fists clenched.

Reaching Travis, Bruce did the first thing that came to his mind, he gripped Travis's hair and pulled on it hard. Travis felt a sharp pain when he felt his hair being pulled back. He was already angry and he didn’t want any drama.

“You ruined everything…” Bruce rolled, pulling harder. His breaths were heavy and his voice was so loud that people started gathering. Andrea came rushing but she just stood still and smiled. “…I was supposed to have a perfect night with Antonio but you ruined it all.” He screamed.

Travis just stood still without moving, feeling himself over boiling with anger.

“My life was perfect, my marriage was perfect until you came back.” He cried, fighting his tears. “You might pretend to be someone else but you’re after my husband and I’ll not allow you. You left him heartbroken and you cheated on him with your lover and now you think you can just come and ruin it all for me?”

He moved his hand and gripped Travis’ jaw. “You ruined everything, you whore!”

That was the height of it for Travis. He felt so much anger that he furiously turned and gave Bruce a hot slap that sent him flying to the nearby table. Luckily, he didn’t fall but hit the table so hard. It hurt! He groaned painfully and picked up a glass, broke it, and furiously turned. He pointed the broken glass at Travis, a tear going down his cheek.

“You think I’m just gonna watch you ruin me?” He chuckled bitterly, biting his lips. “No! I am going to kill you!” He screamed.

But Travis furiously caught Bruce’s hand, pulled him closer, and then furiously turned, pinning one of his hands at the back. Then he used the hand Bruce was holding the glass with and used it against him. He placed that same hand at Bruce’s neck, the sharp glass touching his neck. Bruce’s eyes widened as fear slipped through his system. His harsh breaths could be heard by everyone nearby. Andrea was shocked to see that.

“You know what, Bruce…” Travis warned, talking closer to his ear. He wasn’t joking. “…I don’t like you at all so don’t make me sin by eliminating you from the surface of this earth.”

“I… I… I…”

“Now you listen…” Travis warned. “…the next time you try such stunt with me, I promise you that you’ll regret ever crossing my path.” He snapped, making Bruce slightly closing his eyes. “Don’t underestimate what I can do. I have always hated you and when I get the chance, I am gonna kill you.”

He threw the man on the floor with a thud, getting gasps from people. Everyone had their mouths covered in shock. They couldn’t believe a supermodel like Bruce had just been publicly humiliated. It was shocking.

“Oh my God!” Andrea rushed to Bruce, helping him up. “You should be…”

But she didn’t even finish her sentence. Travis picked up a glass full of champagne and emptied the entire glass on her face. Her mouth gaped, looking at the boy in shock.

“I’d suggest you keep quiet. You don’t wanna make me angry.” He warned.

He shook his head and stormed out of there. Andrea and Bruce were embarrassed. They couldn’t believe Travis had just done that in front of everyone. Now they were at the center with cameramen taking their pictures and other people had their phones out.

Andrea and Bruce left in shame and anger.

***

Antonio stormed into the house and he was so damn mad…

“Look, Bruce, I don’t wanna talk about what happened at the party. Can you just…”

“Just what?” Bruce snapped, furiously rushing to the front to block his husband. “Just forget that you left me like an idiot on the dance floor all because you wanted to dance with that whore?”

“Guys, please,” Ethan said, trying to separate the two but it wasn’t working. “I am sure it’s no big…”

“No big deal?” Bruce snapped, chuckling angrily. “It might be no big deal to you but it is to me. I am the one that was left on the dance floor by my husband. Don’t my feelings matter? And on top of that, that whore kissed my husband and you expect me to keep quiet? Hell to the fucking no!” He screamed.

He was so much in pain and anger. “Now, Antonio…”

“Whatever do you want from me, huh?” Antonio snapped, pointing at Bruce. “What the fuck do you want? You should be used to me doing my things. Isn’t that what you signed for? Wasn’t being married to me what you wanted?”

Bruce felt tears building in his eyes. Even the rubs Andrea was giving his shoulders weren’t doing any fucking thing. It was so hard and he just wanted to get answers from the man that he called his husband.

“Is that any way to talk to me, Antonio?” Bruce muttered, pointing at himself. “I am your husband and we’re legally married. What the fuck do you want me to do, huh? Watch you while that bitch seduce you and you eventually end up fucking him?”

“Don’t you dare?” Antonio warned, breathing like a terrible storm on a cold night. “Don’t you fucking dare say that to me?”

The couple was so loud that all the family members started rushing down the stairs in their night wears, wondering what was going on. What they found was a heated argument, something that they had never seen in six years. Antonio was acting like an animal, pointing his finger at Bruce. And crazy Bruce wasn’t letting it go. They were all shocked. Celine was just happy that her daughter was fast asleep and so was granny.

“Why shouldn’t I?” Bruce jumped at his husband but Andrea held her. “Ever since that bitch came back, our lives and now our marriage is on the rocks and you expect me to keep quiet? Pravee…”

“Don’t you dare mention that name in my house?” Antonio warned, his jaws shaking uncontrollably. “I am warning you, Bruce. If you still want to remain married to me then you better swallow that name.”

Bruce couldn’t fight his tears. They came rolling down. His pain was just too much.

“I just had a fucking horrible night and instead of you to be supportive, you want to add to my problems? What kind of husband are you? Just look at yourself…”

“What support do you need?” Bruce yelled, rubbing his tears furiously. “…don’t my feelings matter? You left me lonely on the dance floor and on top of that, everyone saw you dancing with him. They all saw him kiss you and they all saw him slap you. What wrong did I do by asking for an explanation from my husband?”

Antonio chuckled bitterly. “I don’t owe you any fucking explanation. I don’t have to tell you anything. And let me warn you for the last time…” Antonio got closer, pointing his finger right on Bruce’s face. “…mind the way you talk to me. I am your husband and I deserve respect. If you think you can’t handle me then you’re free to go. I don’t care.”

He furiously turned with those words and angrily went upstairs. Ethan followed him, calling his name but he wasn’t even responding.

Bruce on the other hand felt his strength leaving him. He felt so weak in the knees that he dropped to the floor, his face between his palms as he cried softly. It was just so painful. People like Celine, Eduardo, and Emilia left because they didn’t have time for drama. But Emma rushed to Bruce and wrapped her arms around him.

“Shh…” She soothed, bringing him to her chest. “…he’s just angry. Everything will be okay, love.”

“No!” Bruce tore from that chest, furiously rubbing his tears. “Nothing is going to be alright. That bitch has finally shown me that he’s back for my husband. I saw it aunt…” He cried out in pain. “…I saw the way he was looking at him and even seductively danced on his crotch. It has all been planned, aunt.”

Emma shook her head. “No, Bruce. No one will get Antonio away from you. He’s your man and it will remain so. You guys are married and you’ll be together even in your next life. You don’t have to shed tears.” She helped him rub the tears. “That bitch shouldn’t weaken you like this. You’re stronger than this, Bruce!”

“Aunt is right!” Andrea spoke, her fists clenched. “That whore shouldn’t make you shed tears. Now we know the reason why he’s back. He might pretend that he’s Travis but he still has the same motive as Praveen.”

Bruce listened to his allies and he furiously rubbed his tears, getting up. He somehow managed to gather his confidence back.

“You’re right!” He chuckled bitterly, still rubbing his tears. “I have been the one on the receiving end since that whore returned. But now… the game will be changed. I am gonna show that boy that they don’t just call me, Bruce Antonio Gonzalez for nothing. I will make him taste the ground where I step on and for the tears, I have shed today, I’ll make him pay thousand times over.

I will show him that I am stronger. He’ll tremble whenever he hears my name and I’ll hurt him where it hurts the most. I promise.” He vowed, his fists clenched.

The battle was truly on…

***

Travis was seated on his bed with his back on the board. He was holding his sleeping son in his arms, staring at him. His son looked even more handsome and he couldn’t help but stare at him. He had been holding his son since the time he had come back from the party because he had been emotional. His son had helped take the pain away, well most of it.

He leaned down and kissed his little forehead, rubbing on it after.

“I love you!” He whispered, giving him another. “I love you so much. You’re my reason for living and I’ll always love you no matter what.”

At that instance, Travis got flashbacks of the night Antonio had made love to him and got him pregnant. He couldn’t suppress the painful moan that escaped his throat. The night which was supposedly one of his best was now one of his nightmares. But he had gotten a great gift from it, Sean, his life.

He sighed and then stripped his sleeping son. Before he made him lie on the bed, he made sure he dressed him in his favorite pajamas. Then he kissed him on the cheek and told him how much he loved him.

He slowly walked to the balcony and just enjoyed the cool air hitting his face. But then again, he wasn’t okay that night. Antonio had just kissed him. After six painful years, he got to feel those lips on his again but they brought nothing but pain to him. He slightly closed his eyes and all he saw was Antonio kissing him in the past and that night. It was painful.

He opened his eyes and didn’t miss the tear that went down his cheek. Why was he acting like that, he thought? He was stronger than that. He wasn’t that weak boy anymore, he said to himself. But why did it hurt so much when he thought about the kiss and the fact that Antonio had betrayed him and married someone else. It was just so painful.

“I won’t allow you to hurt me ever again.” He rubbed his face. “Never again, Antonio.”

***

Antonio was seated in his office, busy responding to some important emails. He was dressed sexily in a red designer’s suit with a sky blue shirt inside. He was sexy as usual and that morning, his mood was off. In fact, since the party, he had been off. He was usually upset about simple things and snapped at everything.

Suddenly, Antonio got surprised when he heard something drop on his table, a newspaper. He quickly raised his head and found his best friend, Ethan staring down at him with his arms folded. He looked really serious and Antonio wondered what the hell was wrong with him.

“Congratulations!” Ethan smiled, shaking his head. He was a bit angry. “You made it into the newspaper this morning. How are you feeling right now?”

Antonio sighed gloomily, picking the newspaper from the table. “Don’t be dramatic.”

He looked at the newspaper and felt his heart sink into his stomach. His heart began racing and his anger rose instantly. He clenched in the newspaper, ripping it slowly on the sides.

‘Famous billionaire business tycoon and celebrity, Antonio Gonzalez in a romantic dance with hot billionaire heir, Travis Marasigan. What could be brewing or could it be a past connection with a lookalike?’

Antonio tore the paper in half and threw it on the floor angrily. Man, he was so mad. He furiously got out of the chair, moving from side to side like a mad man.

“I want that out of the paper right now!” He said in a commanding tone. “Call them and tell them that if they don’t, I’ll sue their asses and shut them down.”

“What does it matter?” Ethan said angrily. “You caused this. Many people have probably already seen it and it won’t make a difference. I told you to just sit your ass down at that party but you wanted to act…”

“Don’t give me a fucking lecture!” Antonio snapped, yelling at his friend. “I don’t need it right now. Get that fucking thing out of the paper.”

Ethan sighed, shaking his head. “I’ll get it out but don’t fucking yell at me!” He warned, pointing at his friend. “I am not your assistant or any of your workers. I am your fucking manager and you should respect me like one, at least, if you can’t respect me as your best friend.”

He stormed out of the office.

“Ethan!” Antonio called but he knew that it was too late. He had managed to anger his friend.

“Fuck!” He roared, throwing everything that was on the table on the floor. “Fucking Travis!” He screamed, feeling like pulling his entire hair out. “This is your fucking fault! I hate you so much!”

He was breathing and acting like a beast. His entire day had just been ruined. Fuck! He kicked on the chair hard, not minding the pain he felt. He wanted to punch something, anything. That’s how much he was angry. He cursed angrily and stormed out of his office.

***

“This can’t be happening?” Andrea gripped her hair, pulling on it hard. “No! This is a dream. It can’t be happening.”

Andrea was shocked, staring at her I-pad like a mad person. She wanted to break it. Tempers in the room were high… hearts were racing… curses were being laid and angry voices could be heard. Everyone knew that something was not right.

‘Andrea and Bruce Gonzalez emerge as the clowns of the governor’s annual party.’ The headline read on a post that Andrea was reading. ‘I think it’s a message that you should think twice before trying to mess with Travis Marasigan, a possibly inevitable sex symbol.’

Andrea wanted to break her pad. She was so mad that her voice could be heard from outside the office.

‘If those slaps won’t show you who’s boss then nothing will.’ One post said with laughing emojis. ‘Travis Marasigan isn’t just irresistibly beautiful but he’s also a force to be reckoned with. Watch out, people!’

Andrea screamed, furiously moving from side to side.

“Fucking media people!” She snapped. “Why can’t they just fucking mind their own business? I hate them so much and that Travis will pay, I swear. He’ll pay for every humiliation and every insult if it’s the last thing I’ll ever do. I swear.”

She was expecting Bruce to say something but got shocked when he didn’t. He rather just sat on the chair with his legs on the table, busy on his phone with a smile on his face.

“Are you kidding me, Bruce?” Andrea rolled her eyes. “What the fuck do you think you’re doing? The internet is making fun of us and you’re there smiling like everything is okay? What the hell is wrong with you?”

Bruce raised his face. “Nothing!” He shut his phone and got up, his face getting stern. “You said he’s gonna pay, right? And I agree. Now I have more reasons to hate that bitch. He’ll beg me for his life, I swear. I’ll hurt him so much that he’ll beg for death. Messing with me, insulting me was okay but he touched the tiger’s tail…” He chuckled bitterly, pointing at himself. “…he decided to mess with my husband and I’ll make him regret that. He’ll curse the day his mother got pregnant for his father, I swear on my life.”

Andrea liked the sound of that. “Any plans…”

“In progress!” Bruce grinned like an evil warrior. “We now know exactly what he wants and why he got into this company in the first place. We’re gonna hit him together and we’ll hit harder. He doesn’t stand a chance against the two of us. We’re evil geniuses and we already won the first time. This won’t make any difference.”

Andrea grinned, nodding. “That I agree! We’ll use whatever he has done to us as motivation.”

“You’re right about that.” Bruce folded his arms on his chest. “But for now, I don’t wanna think about that. I just wanna make my husband happy because today is a very important day for him. I have plans for the two of us.” He blushed, biting his lips. Just thinking about it was making him horny. “I wanna make him so happy tonight that he’ll never think about anyone else, Andrea!”

“Hmm…” Andrea chuckled happily. “What could that be? All of us have something planned right?”

“Yeah, but this one will just be for the two of us.” Bruce felt a cold breeze hit his face when he said that. “I wanna drive him insane with pleasure and love. Whenever he’s away from me, he’ll always think about me. I swear and nothing will ruin my night.”

Andrea smiled brightly. “Well, I guess it’s good luck to you and Antonio. I know you’ll make him happy tonight.”

“I will.”

The two friends laughed and held each other’s hands. They were united and they were stronger that way.

***

“Get out!” Granny yelled, throwing a glass at the nurse that was trying to go near her. “Get out and leave me alone!”

“Ma’am, please…” The nurse pleaded, putting her hands together. “…please, put the knife down, please.”

Granny was holding a penknife, threatening to slit her wrist. The nurse was really scared and she had no idea what to do. “Ma’am…”

“Why isn’t my angel here?” She screamed, tears rolling down her face. “I heard Antonio screaming yesterday. He was screaming at my angel. Where is he?”

“Ma’am…” The nurse gasped, slowly kneeling. “…please.”

“All of you are bad.” She yelled, her voice filling the entire room. “I don’t like all of you. I want to go with my angel. I want him here.”

“Please!” The nurse sobbed. “He’ll be here. Just… just drop the knife ma’am and…”

“No, I am gonna…”

“Granny!” A sweet voice spoke, a voice that went straight to granny’s heart.

Granny quickly moved her eyes and saw him standing in the doorway, looking scared. She couldn’t believe he had come. She had thought Antonio had thrown him out the previous night and she was scared.

“Angel…”

Travis was totally surprised. Sure, he was late because he had to attend an important meeting at his company but he hadn’t expected granny to act like that. He was surprised.

“Angel!” Granny sobbed softly but she was really happy. “You’re here!”

“Yes, granny!” Travis nodded as he slowly moved towards her, stretching his hand. “I am here for you. I would never leave you alone, granny. Please, give me the knife.” He pleaded, slowly kneeling in front of her. “Please!”

Granny quickly gave the knife to Travis and he quickly handed it over to the nurse. Then she gave him a tight hug, so tight that Travis got emotional. Everything that had happened back at the party hit him and his eyes became glassy. He was suddenly emotional.

“You’re here, my angel!” Granny sobbed. “You’re finally here.”

“Yes, granny!” Travis said softly, rubbing on her back.

“Don’t leave me here, please.” She sounded scared. “I don’t want to stay here anymore. I wanna go with you. Take me out of here.”

“I won’t leave you, granny!” He promised, trying to fight his tears. But he couldn’t. “I will come early next time.”

“But I want you to stay with me even in the evening,” Granny said softly. “Promise me you’ll always be by my side.”

Travis couldn’t promise anything. As much as he wanted to help granny and bring her back on her feet, he couldn’t risk anyone finding out that he was the one taking care of granny. But from what he had seen, he knew that it was gonna be very difficult to take care of her. There were moments when he was gonna be very busy and he had just been 30 minutes late and she was already acting like that. He was really scared. He needed to think of something and quick.

“Please!” Granny sobbed. “You’re the only one I want to be with. Antonio leaves me most of the time and he’s always busy with work. And whenever Emilia is with me, she doesn’t seem happy. Please, I wanna go with you.”

Travis got emotional and he hugged granny for a long time.

That day, he made sure that he took care of granny very well. He made her some delicious oat and plantain soup and she loved it. He sang her songs to make her smile, read her a really good fairytale story, and even made sure that she was happy. Travis even felt better after doing that, taking care of granny. He prayed to the almighty that she should get healed faster so that he could stop coming to Antonio’s house.

A few hours later, Travis was coming out of granny’s room when suddenly, he got the shock of his life when he saw Celine rushing towards there while talking on the phone. She looked really beautiful in a red designer’s red dress, white high-heeled shoes, and her hair tied in a ponytail. Travis got emotional when he saw her again but… he felt his heart jump in his chest and he quickly turned his back to her, pretending as if he was on the phone. But another shocking thing happened. He realized it was already past 4.pm which means he had spent 2 hours more. The family must have already been coming back.

“Yeah, everything is just going fine. I am sure that he’ll love it and…” She paused when she saw someone standing a distance away from her with his back facing her. “…I will call you back, okay?”

Celine looked at the boy that had his back facing her and she didn’t need to be a genius to know that he was probably the boy taking care of granny. He didn’t look to be poor like she had thought. From the clothes he was wearing, she could tell that he was either middle class or somehow rich.

He was dressed in a yellow see-through long-sleeved designer’s coat with only a black transparent vest inside that was tucked in a white skinny jeans that showed his gorgeous curves and he had yellow snickers on his feet that Celine could have sworn were pretty much expensive or imported. And there was something about him, a feeling that Celine couldn’t quite put her finger on.

“Hi!” She chuckled, getting closer. “Are you granny’s angel? I mean her caretaker? I am Celine, granny’s granddaughter-in-law, and Antonio’s sister in law.”

Travis felt his heart almost running away from him. He got so pale and he felt really weak. He didn’t want Celine to see his face. Shit, how could he have been so stupid as not to observe the time, he thought as he tried his best to shield himself? Thank God his hair was loose.

Celine could somehow see that as she got closer, the boy was trying to hide so she just stopped and stood behind him.

“I am sorry.” She apologized, smiling sheepishly. “I had no idea that you were still here. I thought you went like two hours ago and that’s why I came back. I am a social person and forgive me if I am making you feel uncomfortable since you seem to be very reserved.

Anyway, I came back earlier because today is Antonio’s birthday. And we want to throw him a surprise party but just for the family members and close friends. He doesn’t like parties but maybe he’ll love just a small one.”

Travis was getting paler by the second. He felt like he was running out of air. His heart raced so much that he felt like he was gonna have a heart attack.

“But since you’re still here, I hope you can make it for that,” Celine suggested, hoping the boy was gonna agree. “I am sure that everyone would like to meet you and thank you for what you’ve been doing for granny for the past two weeks.”

Travis slightly closed his eyes, feeling some pain slowly forming in his heart. He quickly shook his head and rushed into granny’s room, locking the door behind him. He was scared shitless.

“Angel!” Granny sat up when she saw him enter the room. He rushed to her. “Why did you go away?”

“N-no! I was nearby.” He stuttered, touching his chest. He needed to get out of there as soon as possible. “Please, you need to get some rest.”

He put the phone on the table and helped granny get into bed. He kissed her forehead and held her hand tightly. He was also trying to look fine but deep down, he was scared as fuck.

“Will you come again tomorrow?” Granny asked in a weak voice.

“Definitely!” Travis nodded while glancing at the door. “You should sleep now. You’re very tired.”

“Are you sure you’ll be back?” Granny’s eyes were shut.

“I promise!”

He kissed her last time and made sure that she was asleep. Then he took his keys and slowly walked towards the door. Celine was still on the floor but she was far from the door so he had a perfect chance to escape without being seen. He got out of the room and started walking fast like the hounds of hell were after him.

“Are you leaving?” Celine quickly got off the phone, rushing towards him. “Won’t you be there for the party?”

Travis shook his head and rushed down the stairs. And lucky for him, she didn’t see his face. There were some people in there working on decorating the place with balloons and other gorgeous decors that were in the living room but Travis didn’t care. He was just happy no one saw him. But through that rush, Travis didn’t even realize that he had left his phone, a phone that had a wallpaper of him and his son.

“Is he very shy?” Celine wondered. “He didn’t smile or say any word or even let me see his face. That is strange.”

But she didn’t have time to think about it long because she still had a lot of things to do.

***

“Oh yeah, just tell them that I am free tomorrow,” Antonio instructed his assistant on the phone. “When they call you, call me so that I can set a meeting with them. Or you can do that.”

‘Alright, sir…’ She said on the other end.

Antonio cut the call and opened the door to his great mansion, welcomed by darkness. It was dark everywhere and he had no idea what was going on. He was really tired and hungry.

“Hello, anyone!” He called, trying to look for a light switch. “He…”

“Surprise!”

The light went on and Antonio got the shock of his life when all the family members threw the balloons in the air, welcoming him to the party. The entire place was decorated perfectly and Antonio would have been extremely happy. But he wasn’t. He was rather mad and that expression on his face could be read by everyone there.

The party was just a small one by his family members and just close friends, Ethan and Paul were also there and they seemed happy.

“Surprise, baby…” Bruce smiled brightly, opening his arms widely.

Antonio looked all around and from all those decors, he didn’t need to be a genius to know that it was his birthday. Shit! How could he have forgotten his birthday? Normally, he would have been happy but he wasn’t. His birthday six years ago had come at a time when he was so sad and hurt that he hadn’t been able to celebrate it since then. He remembered that a year after, he had found a big surprise party and had insulted everyone in there including his family.

“Who did this?” He roared, getting closer to his husband.

Everyone stopped cheering and clapping. They just stood still, staring at Antonio as he’d just grown another head. Bruce lost the smile on his face and just stood still. And here he had been thinking his husband was gonna makeup with him after finding out about the surprise party but he was so damn wrong.

“Who did this?” He yelled, stamping his foot on the floor while harsh breaths escaped him. Everyone was now scared. “Who asked you to do all this?” He pointed to the balloons and the decorations. “How dare you organize such a stupid thing without even informing me!”

“Baby, it’s your birthday and…”

“Damn, it’s my birthday!” He glowered, staring at Bruce like something disgusting. “Did I ask you to do all this? Who gave you the…”

But what had started as a show of anger turned into an emotional moment for Antonio and he just froze and instantly, tears formed in his eyes. His anger melted away and his heart began beating rhythmically with joy and love when he heard his granny’s voice…

“Happy birthday to you…” She sang softly. “…happy birthday to you. Happy birthday, dear Tony. Happy birthday to you.”

Antonio couldn’t fight his tears. He smiled. He smiled when he saw his granny coming towards him with Celine behind her, helping her with the wheelchair. She looked emotional with tears in her eyes. Everyone was now quiet and just enjoyed the beautiful but yet emotional moment.

“Tony!” Antonio muttered, rushing to his granny.

He dropped to his knees in front of her, kissing her hands non-stop. He had never experienced such joy and happiness as he did at that time. His grandmother was getting better.

He touched her feet and she blessed him by touching his head. God! He couldn’t begin to imagine the joy he felt. Nothing was gonna take that from him that night. Everyone began clapping as they watched the grandmother-grandson emotional moment.

“Thanks, granny!” He muttered, slowly rubbing his tears. “This is the best birthday ever.”

Granny cupped his cheek and kissed his forehead. “But it won’t be complete until you cut the cake.”

Antonio nodded and at the same time saw his brother bringing a big cake with many candles on top. He placed it on the big table. He gave his brother the knife and gave him a tight hug.

“Wait, baby…” Bruce rushed to him and stood by his side. “…before you cut the cake, make a wish. Close your eyes and make a wish. I am sure that God will grant that wish today. Perhaps, your wishes will come true since it’s your birthday.”

Antonio smiled at his husband and kissed his cheek. Then he knelt in front of the table, closed his eyes, and made a wish, a wish that he was sure was gonna be granted. He smiled brightly and opened them slowly to blow the candles away but got a shocking surprise….

As soon as Antonio’s eyes opened, he saw Travis standing at the entrance door, coming inside slowly. Antonio felt his heart pound violently in his chest as suddenly, he was filled with so much rage and pain. His jaws started shaking uncontrollably… he gripped the knife harder, his hands shaking too…. His eyes got instantly red as he stared at the person that made him so angry.

Meanwhile, everyone else wondered what could have instantly changed Antonio’s mood and what he was looking at. They all moved their eyes towards the entrance and were just as shocked as he was.

Granny smiled brightly, feeling excited because she felt her angel had come back for her. Celine’s hands were covering her mouth as warm tears decorated her face. She was emotional when she finally got to see Praveen’s face again. It was just too much for her and she cried.

“Praveen!” She muttered.

Emilia was filled with a myriad of emotions when she saw that face, a face that now haunted her. She felt rage, hatred, pain and above all, she relieved all the moments she had suffered because of him. Tears flooded her face but those were of anger and pain. After six long years, she finally got the chance to see the boy that had destroyed her home and turn his love into hatred.

Emma, Bruce, and Andrea were mad when they saw him. Their fists were clenched, feeling nothing but pure anger and hatred for him. That was the last straw.

Antonio on the other hand furiously got up, dropping the knife to the floor. He started walking towards Travis slowly, his clenched fists trembling. He looked at the boy and their eyes locked. Travis felt himself get scared and he had no idea why.

What happens next?

Copyright © 2020 vanalas; All Rights Reserved.
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Glad to see Granny is doing better but at the same time she’s kinda worse if she’s threatening suicide because her angel isn’t there. I’m still wondering if her situation is natural or is being somehow caused by someone as there are some despicable people around. Of course there are sadly a lot of naturally occurring mental disorders in this world and stress, such as what happened with Praveen, can trigger them. I assume Travis came back to get his phone because he was worried about the photo of Sean. Still, while I understand his concerns he walked into a nightmare of a situation and likely won’t get out unscathed not to mention once they realize why he’s there Antonio, Andrea, and Bruce will surely try to snag that phone away from him so they can uncover any secrets he’s hiding. I can’t wait for the next chapter.

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Oh Travis, Praveen, money can’t by you love but surely it could have hired you a good burglar (hobbit?); or maybe the iPhone backup/wipe stolen phone feature?? lol 

Now with the raw emotions about to reach critical mass, in the presence of Granny, will she become herself? Will the Diablo(devil) couple finally be exposed?

What should truly be the correct solution for Antonio; as he doesn’t deserve forgiveness for the evils of his ways, and especially for the things he has done to Praveen. Yet, how do you explain to a child that his father was beyond mercy; and does any mercy warrant the risks and exposures that child would undoubtedly suffer? There is no doubt that Antonio has been internalizing his anger and stress, but his lack of honesty, even with his mother and before Praveen was the precursor to his relationship disasters. Even as a baby crawling in front of the bus, Antonio has always been dangerously independent.
 

Now as the scene is set to explode in the presence of all the family, perhaps the icing on this cake would be the misterous coma patient to return and expose the secrets I believe they carry; ah, could it be the latest revenge from the Diablo twins will backfire into the self inflicted wounds they deserve?
 

So much mystery and intrigue yet to be unveiled...

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