Jump to content
  • Members Can Sign Up For Content Notifications

    Do you want to be automatically notified of updates to your favorite content?  Join now for free and follow your favorite stuff!

    vanalas
  • Author
  • 17,436 Words
  • 264 Views
  • 7 Comments

Comments, critiques and tips are warmly welcome.

Raging Love - 6. Chapter 6: A shocking discovery or could it be two?

Bruce furiously opened the door to Andrea’s room and he was sobbing uncontrollably like a baby. His pain had just turned into something else. He was shivering, really cold and the pain just made things worse. As soon as he entered, Andrea looked at him in shock.

“Bruce!” She quickly rose from the bed where she had been busy with her phone. “Oh my God, what’s going on? Did something happen?”

But Bruce just leaned on a small table and cried at the top of his voice, feeling like an idiot.

“Bruce?” Andrea took a towel and covered his shoulders with it. “Sweetie, tell me what’s going on. You’re wet and you’re crying. Where’s Antonio?”

“How could he have done this to me?” He sniveled, feeling like his heart was being pulled out. “How could he?”

Andrea was confused. “Who are you talking about? Is it Travis again?”

Hearing that name, Bruce angrily pulled on a small basket of fruits, throwing it to the floor while he screamed at the top of his voice. He was so mad and so pained. “No!” He cried.

Andrea quickly pulled him closer, rubbing on his shoulders. “Honey, come on! Say something. What’s going on?”

“No one has ever dared do this to me!” He cried, not even bothering to rub his tears. “And now my husband had to do it to me. I can’t take it!” He sobbed, dropping to his knees. “How could that man do that to me?”

“Please, tell me what’s going on?” Andrea said, kneeling in front of her friend. “What did my brother do that made you like this?”

Bruce looked at his friend and started narrating what had happened to him. By the time he was done, he was crying like a baby on Andrea’s chest with Andrea’s arms wrapped around him. She was really mad and she looked like she was getting ready for war.

“That bitch!” Andrea sneered, breathing harshly. “I knew that he was up to no good. Once again, he’s finally managed to ruin our plans and happiness. What the fuck does he want from us?”

Bruce furiously rose and started throwing things around, crying like a baby. “How could he do that to me?” He screamed. “He made me feel embarrassed in front of that bitch! How could he? He’s supposed to be my husband and protecting me? Why?”

“Calm down, Bruce!” Andrea held him tighter, trying to make him calm. “It’s okay.”

“I am gonna kill that bastard, I swear!” He cried. “I will make him pay for this humiliation by my husband. He doesn’t know me that well. I am capable of murder.”

“Shh…” Andrea held him tighter, patting on his back. “Please, calm down. I can assure you that we’ll make that bitch pay for this. We’ll come up with something, I promise.”

Bruce just remained calm but cried softly on his friend’s shoulder, reliving all the painful moments that had happened to him at the pool. Antonio had never done that to him, ever.

Suddenly, the door to the room opened quickly and Emma together with the rest of the family members except for the kids and Antonio came rushing in. They were all dressed in pajamas and they looked sleepy.

“What’s going on?” Emma rushed to the two friends. “What’s happening? I heard noise hear and I just met with Ethan outside. He told me that Antonio has left and he has gone after him. What’s going on?”

“Aunt!” Bruce quickly hugged her tightly, crying softly.

“Shh…” Emma rubbed on his back. “Just tell me what’s going on? Did you and Antonio fight?”

Andrea groaned. “It’s Travis, aunt!” She said in anger and hatred. “That bitch caused all this. Bruce went to look for Antonio and found that… that whore trying to seduce him. He had his hands all over Antonio and when poor Bruce tried to fight for what was his, the fucker pushed him in the pool.

As if that wasn’t enough, Antonio snapped at him and told him some really bad things.”

Emma groaned, feeling anger taking the best of her. “I think I have had it with that bitch! We need to get rid of him as soon as possible. He can’t just be ruining our lives like this.”

“But aunt…” Eduardo gasped, shaking his head. “…don’t you think maybe Bruce did something to him? I don’t think Travis would attack him without…”

“Why am I not surprised?” Andrea chuckled bitterly, folding her arms. “You don’t like Bruce, we all know that. You never even supported this marriage in the first place. But for once, just listen to yourself. Isn’t Travis following us here evidence enough that…”

“He might have been here for other things,” Celine said, shrugging her shoulder. “Besides, how would he have known that we came here and…”

“He’s probably watching us somehow!” Andrea roared, clenching her fists. “But why am I explaining this to you. It’s useless.”

Celine shook her head and furiously got out of the room. She didn’t wanna be part of that drama that had just started. Eduardo followed her behind and took Emilia with her because he knew that she was gonna get insulted if she remained there with them.

“Shh…” Emma soothed, running her fingers through his hair.

“I will make him pay, I swear,” Bruce vowed. “I will make him regret ever crossing my path. He will rue the day he set his eyes on my husband. This time it will be him crying and not me. I promise.”

***

“Antonio and his family were there too?” Vanessa gasped in shock, following Travis as he rushed to the living room. He seemed a bit upset. “What did you do?”

“Honestly I never expected to see them there. I was shocked when I saw Andrea and Bruce approaching me when I arrived.”

“Oh my God, I hope they didn’t harm you!” Vanessa asked, seeming trying to contain herself. “They’ll get it from me should any of them lay their hands on you.”

“Nothing like that happened.” Travis turned, his face stern. He was looking amazing in red with his hair loose. He had just arrived from the resort. “None of them have the nerves to hurt me. But If I didn’t control myself, I would have killed those two. It’s a good thing I had something important to do.”

“But…” Vanessa paused and looked at him.

“You don’t have to worry aunt. Everything turned out in my favor.” He said with an evil grin. “I got the pleasure of seeing Bruce in pain and tears when Antonio shouted at him. But I want him to feel even more pain. I haven’t started with them. Besides, I think I got some lead with what I want. Now I am sure those two know something about what had happened to me six years ago. And I’ll somehow bring the truth to light.”

Vanessa sighed in frustration, shaking her head. “I just want you to be careful, baby.” She rested her hand on his shoulder. “I don’t think I’ll take it if anything bad happens to you. You and Sean are my life and I love you so much.”

“I know!” He smiled, rubbing on her hand. “I love you too and you won’t lose me. But…” He paused and gave her a sexy look.

“What?” She frowned.

“Maybe you need to get yourself a man, aunt!” He chuckled teasingly when her mouth gaped in shock. “You deserve love as well. Go on a date or something. You’re very beautiful and men would kill just to have you in their lives.”

Vanessa quickly gripped Travis’ cheeks, making him wince jokingly. “I am your mother, young man!” She chuckled, pulling on his cheeks. “I am too old for that shit. I am a woman with a son and a grandson. What the hell do I need a date for?”

“Okay, sorry…” He laughed, giving her puppy eyes. “…I won’t say that again, aunt!”

Vanessa laughed, letting him go.

“But I am serious. You need a date.” He was serious this time. “Anyway, when you’re ready. So where’s Sean and granny? I hope she didn’t give you too many problems yesterday?”

“No!” Vanessa shook her head as both of them headed to her room. “On the contrary, we had a great time yesterday. She likes the new nurse and she was happy that you sent the nurse to her. She loves you a lot. And I think it won’t be long before she gets all better.”

“Yeah!” Travis sighed. “That would be great.”

Both of them went to granny’s room to be with her and keep her company. She was really happy that her angel had finally come back to her.

***

“Okay, just tell them that I’ll meet with them first thing tomorrow morning before I head to the studio,” Antonio instructed in a serious tone. “Set a meeting at around 10.am and then inform me, okay?”

‘Yes, sir!’ His assistant answered on the other end. ‘I will do that. But you might need to come back later in the afternoon. Some important documents will arrive and they’ll need your signature. Or maybe I should send them to your…’

“No…”

Antonio was coming down the stairs in a black designer’s sweatpants and a tight tank top, showing his gorgeous body. He was holding a glass of wine in one hand while his phone on the other hand. It was in the morning and he had just woken up. He had arrived from the resort late, around 2.am, and had just gone straight to sleep. He was still in bad mood and he needed to hit the gym to make him feel better.

As soon as he came downstairs, the entrance door flung open and a furious looking Bruce rushed in, looking like he was going for a war that he was being forced to participate in. Antonio glanced at him and continued talking on the floor.

“Antonio, I need to talk to you right now!” He said, his voice rising. “Right now!”

Antonio glanced at him again. “Okay, I am gonna have to call you back.” He cut the call and turned to face his husband. “Yes, what is it?”

Bruce groaned. “What the fuck was the meaning of what you did last night, huh? You embarrassed me in front of that whore and as if that wasn’t enough, you came back here without an apology and without telling me. What the fuck is wrong with you?”

Antonio was beyond shocked. He took a glance behind to see if there was someone else behind who Bruce was talking to but there was no one.

“Answer me, damn it!” He snapped, literally jumping.

“Whatever is biting you this morning, please…” He paused, putting his hands together. “…just leave me alone. I need to work out, okay? I have…”

“What?” Bruce chuckled bitterly. “You think I am gonna let it go just like that? I need you to apologize to me for what you did!”

“Excuse me!” Antonio frowned. “What the fuck should I apologize for? I have the freedom of movement. I don’t have to fucking get your permission. Get that into your stupid head.”

“Really?” Bruce furiously rubbed the tear going down his cheek. “You’re my husband and you owe me that. You embarrassed me in front of that whore and you didn’t even say anything. You were supposed to be defending me and…”

“Defend you for what? For your foolishness!” Antonio raged, pointing his shaky finger at Bruce. “I wasn’t the one embarrassing you but you were the one that was embarrassing yourself and me.”

Bruce was shocked. The entire family came rushing inside only to find the couple arguing. Good thing the kids were still outside with Eduardo getting some things they had bought along the way.

“What’s going on?” Emma came rushing to the couple together with the rest of the family members. “Will you please stop?”

But…

“I was embarrassing myself?” Bruce pointed, shaking his head. “Whatever I did, I did for you. At least I was showing that I love you and I care. And that’s something that I haven’t seen you do in a long time. Or maybe you were enjoying what that whore was doing to you and you really wanted to fuck him and…”

“Bruce!” Antonio raised his fist, directing it at Bruce’s face.

“Antonio!” Emma screamed, her eyes widening in shock. Everyone else’s hands were now covering their mouths. They had never seen that happen before. “What do you think you’re doing?”

Antonio was holding back, breathing like a man in a long race. He wanted to punch Bruce so hard because of what he had just said. If only he knew how Antonio was feeling at that moment then he wouldn’t have even been standing so close to him.

Antonio withdrew, dropping his hands furiously. Then his eyes started acting like they were scanning something. He was so damn mad that he felt like he was gonna explode.

“What?” Bruce chuckled bitterly, rubbing his tears. “Why did you stop? Go on and hit me. But one thing you shouldn’t forget is that I am your better half and I deserve affection from you. You’re fully aware that I have tried so many times to win your love and make us a perfect couple.” He sobbed, feeling a huge lump developing. “But how can I be successful when every time we’re together, that whore always appears and manages to distance us from each other?”

Antonio chuckled, shaking his head. Even his voice sounded strange and scary. “You’re married to me and that’s what you wanted, right? Enjoy being married to me. You knew the kind of man you were getting married to. And please, I am not asking you to try anything. I like having my peace so don’t force me to make a decision we both will regret. I am through with this.”

He furiously threw the glass to the floor and stormed out of there, ignoring the calls from Emma. He was just so mad that he thought he was gonna make a mistake if he chose to stay there. So he went to the gym to empty his strength in the punching bag as he did.

“I can’t believe this.” Bruce sobbed softly, leaning on her friend’s shoulder. “I won’t allow that boy to separate me and Antonio, I swear. Even if I have to eliminate him, I will.” He vowed as he cried on his friend’s shoulder.

That day, Antonio spent the entire day in the gym, just wallowing in his pain and anger. It never went away but by the time he got out, he was feeling a bit better. He was stinky, sweaty, and really dirty. He took a quick shower without speaking to anyone and in the evening, he took Ryan and Stephanie for ice cream and they spent a lot of time there.

By the time they returned, it was late. He just went to his room, found his husband sleeping, and just slept without a noise. He was still mad at him and he didn’t want any more drama or noise.

***

“Oh yes, aunt…” Travis laughed softly as he opened the door to his gorgeous office. “…the meeting with the Chinese investors went perfectly fine. I was even shocked when we sealed the deal. It seems they’re interested in father’s hotel.”

‘Who wouldn’t?’ Vanessa laughed on the other end. ‘Marasigan Rich hotel is a five-star hotel and one of the best in the country. It attracts a lot of income and besides… with your beauty, I am sure those men wouldn’t have said no.’

“Really, aunt?” Travis laughed together with her. “You’re crazy. Anyway, how’s granny doing?”

‘She’s perfectly fine! I am about to go to her. We want to play cards.’

“Hmm, best friends already?” Travis moaned, putting all his stuff on the table. “Anyway, you guys have a great time. I will be coming very soon. I just need to review a few things and then I’ll be coming. Kiss Sean for me.”

‘I will. As soon as he comes back.’

Travis smiled brightly and cut the call. He was feeling a bit tired since he had been from having a really important meeting with the Chinese men that wanted to invest in his father’s hotel. It had been successful and he was very happy. Now he just had to check out some documents, approve a few things and he was gonna be on his way. It was already past 3.pm and he needed to be home.

But when Travis landed his eyes on those files on the table, he knew he was gonna be there for a while. He needed to carefully review those files for their brand and some were ideas for the next shoe line. He didn’t wanna take his work home because he knew that it was family time when he was home. So he had no choice.

“Phew!”

Travis sat on the table and took the first file. He started reviewing it and then looking at the sketches there and also the figures for their sales. He was impressed because his brand was now considered the hottest in the market although it was just a simple one. Tonzalez blue was now on top of the chain due to his simple brand. He was happy. But he continued his work and it was a lot.

Travis was looking hot in a red designer’s shit that was tucked in a beautiful black tight designer’s trouser with black shoes on his feet. He had a beautiful black long coat that reached his knees and he was looking really hot. His hair was tied in a ponytail, revealing his gorgeous face. Travis took it off as he did his work.

He was so engrossed in his work that he didn’t even realize that time was running. When he eventually finished his work and glanced at his watch, he gasped, quickly getting up from his chair. Shit! He didn’t even realize that it was that late. It was almost 10.pm and he had never stayed up to that time at work. He was now sure that everyone had left. Shit!’

Travis quickly got his coat and went downstairs where he found that everyone had already gone. He couldn’t see anyone except for the security guard at the door. Shit! He wondered why his guard hadn’t called him when he came to pick him up. He usually did.

Travis sighed, getting his phone out as he stood near the entrance. He called his guard and it wasn’t long before he picked up.

“Hello, Marie, why haven’t you called me? I was waiting here and I…”

‘Sorry, sir, but the road leading there has been blocked.’ The guard said abruptly. ‘I have been trying to find a route that can lead me there for the last four hours but to no avail. The police have blocked all roads.’

Travis frowned, trying to understand what the guard was trying to tell him. “Blocked? Why?”

‘You didn’t hear, sir?’ The guard said in a deep manly voice. ‘There is a very bad riot in the city. All roads have been blocked while the police are trying to bring the situation under control.’

Travis felt his heartbeat violently in his chest, feeling a deep wave going through his body. The word, ‘riot’ kept ringing in his head.

“What?” He gasped, his mouth shaking. “What riot? When? How?”

‘I think it has something to do with politics. It started early this evening and I think things have gotten worse. I’ll try to find a way to get to you, sir. I am so sorry.’

Travis was scared. He was really scared. Never had he heard of a riot in the city since his birth. What was going on, he thought as he sighed in frustration? He was really confused and didn’t know what to do.

“No, it’s fine…” He sighed. “…you should think of your safety too. Go back to the house. I will think of something and I’ll come.”

‘But sir…’

“Marie, that’s an order.” He said in a loud voice. “Go home!”

The guard sighed on the other end. ‘Yes, sir! Be careful.’

Travis smiled and cut the call, feeling even more nervous than ever. He looked around the place and there was no one around. He knew he had to think of something quickly or he was gonna be stuck in that place. He was sure there was a taxi somewhere, anywhere that could help him get home.

“Sean must be waiting for me!” He said as he dialed Vanessa’s line. “And aunt must be worried.”

Travis got shocked when Vanessa’s line didn’t go through. He tried again and again but nothing. He even tried his house phone but it was going through. Shit! He was pissed now. He needed to communicate home somehow.

Travis sighed and was about to curse when suddenly, he froze. His heart stopped beating and he held his breath, his eyes widening. At first, he thought he was dreaming but it was all true. Antonio was coming towards him with a stern face, staring right at him. Shit! Travis felt a shiver run down his spine when he eventually breathed.

Antonio was dressed in a beautiful blue designer’s suit with the jacket unbuttoned, a black shirt inside, and blue shoes. His hair was gelled to perfection. Travis quickly turned his back to Antonio, slightly closing his eyes.

Of all people that had to be at the company, it had to be Antonio Gonzalez. Travis was a bit upset because that day, he had planned on seeing Antonio. He just kept on praying in his heart that Antonio would just pass by without talking to him. He would just go to his car without even talking to him. But his prayers weren’t answered.

“What are you doing here?” Antonio asked, looking at the boy that had his back to him. “Don’t you have somewhere else to be?”

Travis glanced at Antonio, wearing a confident look. “What I am doing here is none of your business. What about you? What are you still doing here? Shouldn’t be home with your family?”

Antonio laughed, getting a bit closer. “What I am doing here is none of your business too. This company belongs to me, the floor you’re standing on belongs to me and even the air that you breathe belongs to me.”

Travis rolled his eyes, shaking his head.

“By the way, your 48 hours are up. Where is my grandmother? I told you I need her back to my house and…”

“And I already told you that I wasn’t gonna bring her back until she was completely healed.” He said harshly, folding his arms on his chest. “I never break my promises. Granny is fine and you don’t have to worry about her.”

“She is…” Antonio tried to yell but he stopped mid-way. “…she is my grandmother and you don’t have any relationship with her. I wasn’t joking when I told you to bring her home.”

Travis laughed. “I wasn’t joking too, Mr. Gonzalez. Your grandmother is old enough to know what she wants. I didn’t force her to follow me. She came with me of her own will. It’s not my fault that she likes me more than her grandson. And please, if you’re done with your threats, you can leave. I don’t know why you’re even here.”

Antonio laughed. “Why are you asking? Are you my mother or my husband? It is my company, my money and I can do whatever I want.”

Travis shook his head in mockingly. “Who would even want to be your husband? Now I know why your grandmother doesn’t want to stay with you. Only God knows the number of people that have left because of your stupid ego. And I wouldn’t blame them.”

Though Travis said it under his breath, Antonio got it loud and clear. Those last words hit his heart, making it pound violently in his chest. His facial expression changed to something else… his hands clenched into fists… his breaths turned to harsh breaths and his body trembled. Anger swept him off his feet and he groaned furiously, pushing a vessel that was near him. It broke into pieces, making a terrible noise.

Travis on the other hand was caught off guard when he heard that noise. He looked in Antonio’s direction and saw him coming towards him with anger all over him. He looked like he was in a fight or something.

Before Travis even said a word, Antonio gripped his arms and pinned him to the wall, getting closer to him. Travis’ heart began racing as fear took him by surprise. He was confused because he had no idea what he had said to Antonio to cause that reaction.

“What are you doing?” Travis trembled, trying to let himself loose. But Antonio was just too powerful. “Let me go!”

“What did you say?” Antonio groaned, looking at the boy’s face. “Is it my fault that I was cheated on? How dare you!”

Travis was shocked. He didn’t remember ever saying that to Antonio that night.

“So according to your theory, I deserved being hurt and cheated on?”

Travis was looking in Antonio’s eyes and what he saw in them scared him big time. He didn’t even remember Antonio scaring him like that since he returned. He was trying to let himself loose but the guy was just too powerful.

“Do you know that we’re alone here?” Travis tried to move but Antonio just tightened his grip. “Do you know I can hurt you and nobody can do anything about it?”

“Ant…”

“What do you think?” Antonio laughed manically, scaring Travis even more. “Do you think I was joking with you the other day? I told you I am a very bad guy. My heart is made of stone and I don’t have any feelings. Don’t mess with me because you’ll just be surprised by what I can do to you. I can hurt you right now.”

Travis’ heart was beating so fast that he felt like he was gonna have a heart attack.

“And what about you? You think you have a perfect life?” He chuckled bitterly. “Or maybe everyone’s right about you. You’re following me around because you’re a whore!”

That was it for Travis. He didn’t know what that word did to him. He furiously released his hand and smacked Antonio across the face hard, breathing like a warrior. Tears had already formed in his eyes and his pain came back to haunt him.

Antonio on the other hand got madder when he felt that terrible pain on his face. He looked at Travis angrily, his fists clenching. He started going near the boy to hurt him. Travis pushed Antonio hard and ran out of the building, leaving Antonio touching his hurting cheek.

Travis rubbed his face as he ran away. He needed to get out of there at all costs. He couldn’t stay a single second with Antonio because he couldn’t stand him. He hated him for what had just happened.

Travis got out of the company premises and started walking slowly on the road, hoping to catch a taxi or anything to take him home. He was desperate. He was walking slowly, looking all around. It was really cold and quiet. He was really surprised because cars and people were supposed to be moving. Some cars were parked randomly, abandoned by their owners. He could see a fire in bins nearby and he got a bit scared. But he knew that he had to go home somehow.

Travis had just walked just a bit when all of a sudden, he heard a loud sound nearby right before he heard shouting. His heart nearly missed a beat when he saw some men coming from a corner with weapons. He got really scared.

“Beat anyone you see!” Travis heard one of them shout. “No one will escape us.”

Travis felt his heart give a violent pound in his chest. The men were heading his way but it looks like they didn’t see him. His body began trembling and he started taking steps backward. He was praying in his heart not to be harmed. He had never been that scared. He knew that it was only gonna be a matter of time before the men saw him and started chasing him. He was done.

Suddenly, someone gripped Travis from behind just as the men started running towards where he was. He was about to scream but his mouth was covered too. He was quickly taken behind a parked car where he found himself seated between whoever had gripped him’s thighs. Travis was scared and he was panting. His heart was racing and he knew from the noises near that the men had reached him. But since he was behind a car, the men quickly passed without seeing him. But he was still not out of danger. He needed to escape from the person that had him. He tried to move but…

“Don’t worry!” A voice said softly. “I am here. I won’t let anything happen to you.”

Travis slowly moved his head and just looked in the handsome face of his ex-husband, Antonio. The guy was staring into his eyes and he didn’t look angry anymore. He was rather looking at Travis with concern. Travis stopped panting and just got stuck staring into Antonio’s eyes. The man had saved his life.

Antonio slowly moved his hand from Travis’ mouth, still staring at him. He had followed him because he knew what was going on in the city. He didn’t want anything bad to happen to Travis.

“I… I…” He stuttered, taking a deep breath. “…there’s a riot in the city and I am here all night. I will not let anything happen to you.”

Travis didn’t even realize he was crying until he felt the wetness on his face. He slowly rubbed his tears, wondering why Antonio had saved his life. He was the last person Travis was expecting to do that for him. But now he was surprised.

“It’s not safe here. Let’s go back to the company.”

Travis nodded softly and got up slowly. Both of them went back to the company and Travis was able to feel a bit safe. But things seemed awkward between him and Antonio. They’d been arguing each time they met but this time, Travis was speechless. He didn’t know what to say to Antonio.

“The situation outside is really bad,” Antonio muttered, running his fingers through his hair. “We should stay until the situation becomes normal.”

Travis nodded softly, feeling a bit shy to look at Antonio now. The man didn’t look angry. He was just calm and caring. Travis was surprised. He wanted to say something but…

“Oh my God, you’re hurt!” He gasped, shakily pointing to Antonio’s bloody hand.

Antonio quickly looked at his hand and that was when he felt the pain. Something had cut his hand and he was bleeding. It was a bit deep. Maybe a glass when they had been hiding from the mob outside.

“Oh shit!” He cursed, holding his hand carefully. “How did this happen? Shit!”

Travis took a deep breath, getting closer. “We need to treat it before it gets infected.”

“No… I…”

“No!” Travis said softly. “It also needs to be bandaged. You’re bleeding. There has to be the first headbox somewhere around here.” He was scanning the whole place, trying to spot one.

“I have one in my office.”

“Great!” Travis said abruptly. “Let’s go there.”

Antonio nodded softly and both of them went upstairs to Antonio’s floor. As soon as they got out of the elevator, there was a power cut, making the whole place to be dark. Antonio quickly switched on his phone torchlight and then both of them went to his office. It was dark and Travis was a bit scared.

“Okay, just stay here. I think there have to be some candles somewhere. I’ll go and get them.”

Antonio turned to leave but got frozen when he felt Travis’ hand hold his tightly. He wondered why Travis had done that and slowly turned but what he saw shocked him. Travis’ mouth was shaking a bit and the boy seemed scared. He glanced at his hand and Travis quickly withdrew.

“Sorry.” He muttered. “I am very scared of darkness. Please, do not leave me alone in this room.”

Antonio had never seen that side of Travis before. Seeing him so quiet and so humble reminded him so much of Travis and the night they’d spent together. That had been the first time he had made love to him. But somehow, instead of being mad, Antonio felt a warmth slowly developing inside of him. He stared at the boy’s face, wondering how somehow could be so beautiful.

“The candles are probably here somewhere. We’ll look for them together.”

Antonio nodded without even smiling. He didn’t know what to say. The two started searching for the candles, hoping that power was gonna be restored. That had never happened before at Antonio’s company.

They found the candles in Antonio’s bathroom together with the first aid kit. They lit the candles and put them on the table. They then went to Antonio’s small office living room and they both sat on the same couch. Travis opened the first aid kit and started his work.

First, he took Antonio’s hand carefully, examining the wound. It wasn’t that bad and at least it had stopped bleeding. He took some cotton wool and made it wet with methylated spirit and then started cleaning the wound carefully. Antonio winced, trying to pull his hand but Travis started blowing on the hand carefully.

Antonio’s heart immediately started racing when he saw what Travis was doing. He got stuck staring at the boy and he didn’t even realize that a smile had popped up on his face. The way Travis was carefully taking care of his wound, blowing it like he was handling a child, and the look on his face, Antonio couldn’t help but smile to himself. He was hypnotized… he couldn’t feel the pain anymore. What he felt was a peace unlike he had ever felt before. The way Travis was holding his hand, Antonio felt like he was being connected to a cable of electricity.

He was getting lost staring at the boy and his heartbeat rhythmically and images of his past started forming in his mind.

***

6 years ago

*

“Ouch!” Antonio screamed, pulling his hand away from Praveen’s. “Are you trying to kill me before this wound kills me?”

“Will you stop acting like a kid?” Praveen laughed, shaking his head. “If you don’t let me treat it, that thing will give you so much pain. It might get infected.”

“I think you touching it has made it infected already. I don’t even know why I came to you for this.” Antonio rolled his eyes, hiding his hand. “You’re probably gonna torture my poor hand.”

Praveen shook his head, folding his arms. “Fine! Why don’t you take that to your boyfriend, Bruce or your sister? Or better still, Eduardo can treat it.”

Praveen folded his arms and looked away. He looked a bit angry and Antonio could see that. Antonio sighed, stretching his hand slowly. “Here! You can do it.”

Praveen looked at Antonio and then chuckled. “What made you change your mind? I thought you didn’t want me to touch you?”

Antonio sighed gloomily. “I am sorry.”

Praveen was more than shocked when Antonio apologized to him. He hadn’t expected that from him. The guy was always teasing him or insulting him so he was really surprised. He smiled softly and then took the first aid kit and started treating his husband with such care. Whenever Antonio showed any form of pain, he blew on the hand and apologized.

He was being gentle, careful, and loving. Antonio couldn’t help but stare. This was the person that he hated a lot, the same person that he had vowed to make suffer. He was the one that was taking care of him right at that moment. Nobody cared for him the way that Praveen did. Antonio’s feelings towards the boy were confusing him. Was he truly after his money?

“Hey!” Antonio heard Praveen’s voice, getting him out of his thoughts. “It’s done. See, it didn’t even take that long and it didn’t hurt either.” He got up. “You can now go.”

He tried to leave but Antonio gripped his hand and pulled him back. Both of them found themselves staring at each other, getting lost in each other’s eyes. Antonio’s hand shakily moved up and caressed Praveen’s cheek. Praveen slightly closed his eyes, feeling his heart race.

“Thank you so much!” Antonio said in a horny voice.

Praveen opened his eyes, biting his lip. He was acting scared. “You don’t have to thank me. It’s my duty. You’re my husband.”

And Antonio smiled brightly and then burst into laughter. He let go of the boy’s hand, getting up from the bed. “You should have seen your face. Of course, I was just joking with you.”

Then he left laughing.

***

Present-day

*

Antonio was smiling like an idiot while staring into the beautiful boy’s face. He didn’t even realize that he was done with what he had been doing. He kept on scanning Travis’ face to those lips that looked kissable and inviting… the smooth skin that was inviting him to touch it and those eyes, those beautiful eyes that were hypnotizing. Wait, did he even know what he was thinking?

Travis moved his face up only to stare into Antonio’s gorgeous smiling face. He was shocked because he had never seen Antonio smile ever since he came back. He wondered what was on his mind. But, there was something about that smile that gave him some peace.

Travis's heart took him right to Sean. Antonio’s eyes and his beautiful hair, little Sean had inherited all that from him. Even the way he acted sometimes, it reminded him of Antonio. Travis couldn’t help but wonder what would have happened if Sean had been born when he was still with Antonio. Would things have been alright? Shit! He shook his head to bring himself back to reality.

“It’s done!” Travis said softly.

“W-what?” Antonio stammered, coming back to reality. “You’re done!”

He quickly looked at his hand and it was perfectly bandaged and he didn’t even feel any pain. He looked and found Travis staring into his face like he wanted to kiss him, or so he thought. His heart was already racing and he chuckled softly, shaking his head slowly.

“Why are you looking at me that way?”

Travis looked away, his mouth shaking. It was like he was out of words to say to Antonio. “It’s just that I have never seen you this way before. Whenever we meet, you’re always upset but today…” He chuckled softly. “…I have seen you with a genuine smile. I have never seen a person like you.”

Antonio laughed, getting up from the chair. “And you won’t find one either.” He took off his jacket and threw it on the couch opposite the one that they had been seated on. “I will sleep over there and you sleep here. We’re safe for the night.”

Travis nodded and gave a sigh of relief. Somehow, being with Antonio gave him some sense of security. He wasn’t afraid of anything. He watched as Antonio lay carefully on the couch, staring right into the ceiling like he was searching for something. He found himself smiling a bit.

“I fail to understand you.” He said softly, taking a deep breath. “Whenever you meet me, you threaten to hurt me and cause me pain. But today, just when I thought I was gonna be hurt by those men, you came at the right time and saved my life. I am not trying to be ungrateful but why did you save me today? You were the last person I was expecting to do that for me. You confuse me now, I mean… what do you wish?”

Antonio covered his eyes with his hand, taking a sigh. “I wish to sleep.” He said in a deep manly voice without even opening his eyes. “I am very tired and I want to sleep peacefully for some time. Please, sleep!”

Travis nodded and then lay on the couch. But even though he was sleeping there, he still had his eyes on Antonio. There were a lot of questions going in his head and he honestly didn’t know where he was gonna get the answers from.

‘Almighty, what are you saying to me?’ He thought, still staring at Antonio. ‘What are you trying to tell me? Just when I thought things could only get worse between Antonio and I, you sent him to save me. Thank you so much, almighty.”

He stayed there for quite some time just looking at Antonio. And when he heard him snoring softly, he smiled brightly and he didn’t even realize he was. He kept on staring at Antonio until he was soon taken by sleep.

***

Travis slowly opened his eyes when he felt warmth on his face. Instead of his cozy bed and a warm kiss from his son, he realized that he was sleeping on the couch with the rays of the sun on his face. Shit! That was when it hit him. He hadn’t gone home the previous night due to a riot.

He slowly rose from the couch, stretching his arms. As he did, he noticed Antonio sleeping peacefully on the couch with his arms folded. He looked comfortable and peaceful. Even his facial expression was just okay, He didn’t seem mad or bitter or resentful but just seemed like his normal self. Travis smiled softly when Antonio’s head moved a bit.

He rose from the chair, still stretching. He glanced at the window and saw that the sun was out. All he was hoping for was that the riot had ended and he could rush home to see his precious son before he went to school. He was also sure that Vanessa was very worried.

Travis wore his coat carefully and picked up his phone from the table. He was ready to go. He started heading towards the door but something stopped him, his coat had got entangled into something. Travis slowly turned but got the shock of his life. Instead of what he had thought, Antonio had gripped a part of his coat hard, shocking him.

Antonio was still fast asleep and Travis knew that he had probably gripped his coat by mistake. He needed to get it away so he slowly walked towards Antonio, slowly knelt in front of him, and carefully took his hand. He quietly opened Antonio’s palm and was successful at getting the coat out.

Travis tried to go again but this time, he felt Antonio’s handhold his hand firmly. He quickly looked towards him and still found him asleep. What was going on? Travis tried to pull his hand free but the guy had a powerful grip on him.

“Don’t leave me now.” Antonio moaned, still in his sleep. “…I haven’t seen you to my heart’s content.”

He was probably dreaming, Travis thought as he looked at the guy’s handsome face. He looked stern though he was still talking. Travis needed to someone get himself free without waking him up. He tried to move his hand but the guy pulled him closer, holding his arm tightly. Travis felt his heart give a sharp pound in his chest. He was so close to Antonio’s face that he could feel his hot breaths on his face.

“I… I won’t let you go so easily.” Antonio held the hand with both his hands, bringing him even closer. Travis was brought to his knees, his face getting closer to Antonio. “Why do you wanna go away from me? Don’t you want to be with me?”

‘Oh God,’ Travis thought as he tried to pull his hand free. ‘Why is he holding me so firmly? I need to let loose or else… I don’t know what will happen. I need to go away from here before he wakes up.’

Travis used his other hand to try and move Antonio’s hands but being careful not to wake him up. But the moment he started, Antonio quickly opened his eyes and raised his head. He got the shock of his life when he found himself so close to Travis’ face, their noses brushing on each other. Powerful electrical vibration in Antonio’s body and his body trembled. His hormones instantly rose and he gave a sharp breath.

He slightly closed his eyes, feeling his heart racing… sweat instantly broke on his skin and he gulped. Shit! His member was starting to rise and he had no idea what was going on. He could feel he was holding Travis’ hand but he didn’t let go. He didn’t even know if he wanted to let go. Everything at that moment seemed so magical. Antonio was enjoying it.

He opened his eyes and got the luck of looking into those hypnotizing eyes that made him fill with lust and love at that the same time. Something awakened inside of him, something that he didn’t understand but enjoyed so much. It was like he was under the sea but he could breathe… like he was under a volcano but he wasn’t burning like he was in a tornado but he was completely fine. He didn’t want it to end.

Travis got scared being that close to Antonio. He quickly withdrew his hand but their faces were still close and their noses still brushed on each other. He knew he didn’t wanna catch anything but before he could react… suddenly, the door flung open and…

“What’s going on here?”

Both Travis and Antonio quickly got back to reality. Travis quickly withdrew from Antonio and stood up still, turning to face the door. That was when he saw them, Andrea and Bruce. They were standing right at the entrance staring at the two of them as they’d just grown two heads. The look on their faces, their fists clenched, and looking like they were about to cry, Travis would have laughed but for the fact that he was shocked.

Bruce felt like he was dead… he felt like he was dreaming. Tears were already building in his eyes and the pain that he felt was beyond anything that he’d ever experienced/ He got really weak and his heart hurt with each beat it made.

His husband hadn’t returned home and he had been so worried sick the entire night. He had come to the office early to see if he was alright only to find him close to Travis’ face about to kiss him. That was so damn painful.

“What the hell is going on?” Bruce furiously walked to where the two men. “You two together, here? You slept here?”

Antonio sighed, slowly getting up from the chair. He was not ready for any drama and he honestly didn’t care.

Travis just picked up his stuff and walked out, leaving the three alone. He didn’t want any trouble that morning.

“Antonio! What’s going on here?” Bruce yelled, furiously putting his phones on the table. “I was worried sick yesternight because my husband didn’t come home and it wasn’t safe. I tried to call you but you didn’t pick up my call. You didn’t come home because of that whore?”

Antonio picked up his jacket. “Bruce, please, I am not in the mood for any drama this morning. I wanna go home.”

He shook his head and left the office.

“Bruce…”

“No, Andrea!” Bruce rubbed his tears. “I have had enough of this. I am not gonna let go. There’s no way I am losing.”

“Bruce…”

But Bruce was already on his way out of the office. Andrea followed behind.

***

Vanessa was busy trying to make a call but couldn’t get through. She was really worried and she didn’t know what to do. She kept on glancing at the door but nothing was helping. She was really worried and she had a frown on her face. She was still in her nightdress with fluffy sleepers.

She was about to try again when she looked at the entrance and saw Travis coming inside, handing over his things to one of the maids. Seeing him, Vanessa felt tears building in her eyes and she rushed to him, gripping him into a tight hug.

“Oh, my baby…” She said in an emotional voice. “…you’re finally here. Are you okay? You have no idea how worried I was.”

Travis was really happy. “Don’t worry. I am really fine. I slept at the office.” He sighed, slightly closing his eyes. “I couldn’t call you. I don’t know what was wrong with the network. Are you okay?”

Vanessa withdrew from the hug but held Travis’ hands. She caressed his cheek, smiling brightly. “There was a bad riot and I don’t know what had happened. There was a disruption in the network in this area and no one could make a call. But as soon as it came back, I tried to reach you but I couldn’t do it. You made me so worried.”

“My phone went off, aunt!”

Travis could see that Vanessa was really worried. He didn’t want to tell her that he was almost hurt by a mob and was saved by Antonio. He didn’t wanna make her more worried. She was worried about every little thing that he did so…

“Anyway, I was really worried about you. How’s my son? How’s Sean?”

Vanessa sighed. “He’s okay. He was just crying yesterday because he missed you. But then he stopped because he got happy.”

Travis felt like he was able to breathe again. “I am sorry for that. So where is he and…”

“Daddy!”

Before Travis could even finish his sentence, he heard his son’s cute little voice and then footsteps getting closer. His heart jumped with joy as he quickly turned to see his son. But Travis got dumbstruck as soon as he turned. He froze where he stood, his breaths seizing and his heart racing. He was soon overcome by a myriad of emotions and his eyes became glassy.

He couldn’t believe what he saw. He couldn’t believe it. A handsome muscular guy was standing right in front of him with a brilliant smile, staring right into his eyes. He was dressed in a white designer’s shirt that was halfway buttoned-up, revealing his muscular hairy chest, and tucked in a black designer’s trousers with black shoes. His dark hair was shaven on the sides and left a little longer in the middle.

Travis didn’t even feel when his son wrapped his tiny hands around his waist. He was stuck staring at the guy.

“Hi!” The guy waved sexily, making a tear to go down Travis’ cheek.

“Sant…” He sobbed softly, covering his mouth. “Santiago! Oh my God!”

Santiago rushed to Travis and hugged him tightly. When Travis felt those arms around him, he couldn’t hold himself. He sobbed softly but not in sadness. He was very happy. It had been many months since he saw Santiago. It got him emotional because his bond with Santiago had grown so much in the last six years. The guy had been with him through thick and thin.

“Oh my God,” Travis pulled away from the guy, looking at him like he was a ghost. “Look at you. I can’t believe this, Santiago, I…”

“No!” Santiago chirped, wiping Travis’ face. “You’re a big boy now, huh? I don’t want to see those tears anymore.”

“I am not sad.” Travis chuckled softly, shaking his head. “I am just so happy that you’re here. When did you arrive?”

Santiago laughed, picking little Sean into his arms. “Yesterday before the roads were blocked. But I was delayed so I arrived here really late.”

Travis frowned, shaking his head. “How come I didn’t know about this? We haven’t talked since I came here and I never told you I was coming here.”

“It was meant to be a surprise.” Vanessa smiled, taking Sean from Santiago’s arms. “He called me and told me not to tell you.”

“You knew about this?” Travis gasped, playfully hitting her on the shoulder. “You should have told me. I… I have been missing him so much and you know that.”

“Aren’t you happy he’s here now?” Vanessa raised her eyebrow. “And he reached just in time to make Sean happy. When he saw him, he stopped crying. Speaking of Sean, he has to get going now. The driver is already waiting for him.”

“Alright!” Travis took his son in his arms, kissing him sweetly on the lips. “I am sorry, sweetie. Daddy will make it up to you when you come back, okay? I love you.”

“I love you too,” Sean said, hugging his father tightly. “Love you too, uncle!”

“Love you!” Santiago said, kissing the little boy on the cheek.

Vanessa took the boy and they both went outside.

“How could you?” Travis hit Santiago on the shoulder.

“Ouch!” Santiago winced softly, rubbing on his shoulder. “That hurts, Travis. Do you want to hurt me?”

“That’s what I want to do,” Travis said, folding his arms and looking away like he was really angry. “You went away for so long and you didn’t even bother to visit. How could you?”

“Hey!” Santiago wrapped an arm around Travis’ shoulder, bringing him closer. “I know. But there was just a lot of work to do there. I had to help my brother out with the work. Besides, I missed you so much and you’ve got no idea.”

“Hmm… I don’t believe you!” Travis shook his head.

“You don’t believe me?” Santiago smiled brightly, kissing him on the cheek softly. “Okay then, I have bought something especially for you. I am sure you’ll love it and believe me.”

Travis looked at Santiago and tried his best to look mad but he found himself smiling. “I hope I’ll like it.”

“No, you won’t.” Santiago laughed when Travis frowned. “You’ll love it.”

“Okay then.” Travis coiled his arm with Santiago’s. “Let’s go upstairs. We have a lot of catching up to do. But first, you’ll have to explain to me what’s been happening to you.”

“Well…”

The two men went upstairs talking and laughing. Travis was more than happy that Santiago had returned to the country. He was one of the few people that made him extremely happy and feel at peace. The guy had sacrificed a lot for him.

***

“Antonio, come back here!” Bruce yelled, following Antonio behind. He was pissed and he demanded answers. “You’re not gonna ignore me like this!”

Antonio gave a sigh of frustration, turning to face his husband. “What else do you want me to say to you, huh? Both of us were stranded at the office and we stayed together because…

“That’s not what I saw!” Bruce furiously threw his keys on the floor. “When I arrived there both of you were about to kiss. I am not buying that bullshit that you’ve been giving me. Just tell me the truth, are you having an affair with that bitch? Are you fucking…”

“Excuse me!” Antonio slightly closed his eyes, feeling anger sweep him off his feet. “What the fuck did you just say to me?”

“Are you fucking that whore?” Bruce yelled, his voice echoing throughout the house. “I wanna know if that bitch has succeeded in seducing your dick!”

Andrea came rushing inside and she threw her bag on the floor, going in between the two. She could tell that the two were ready for a fight. “Guys, please… let’s talk about this.”

“What the fuck was that?” Antonio roared, furiously brushing Andrea’s hands away. “What the hell did you just say to me? How dare you ask me such a stupid question! Who do you think you are, Bruce, huh? How dare you!”

“I am your husband!” Bruce roared. “I have every right to demand answers from you. I know what I saw when I entered that office. I know exactly what I saw.”

“Bruce, please…”

“Please what?” Bruce snapped at Andrea, pointing angrily at his husband. “Weren’t you there with me? You know exactly what I am saying is the truth. Weren’t they about to kiss?”

Andrea nodded softly. “I know how you feel, Bruce but please, calm down. You can talk about this calmly, please!”

“Calmly?” Bruce chuckled bitterly. “I am done being calm because it doesn’t even help me anyway. I am tired of being calm when that whore is busy seducing my husband every chance he gets.”

“Nothing happened!” Antonio groaned. “What do you want me to say? You want me to agree to something that didn’t happen? We were together because…”

“Doesn’t he have his own office? And since when did you two become pals, huh? I thought you hated him and wanted to hurt him. What happened to that?”

Antonio groaned, clenching his fists. “I am tired of explaining things to you.”

Antonio quickly turned and started walking away but Bruce rushed to his front, blocking him.

“What the fuck do you want from me?”

“The truth!” Bruce barked in Antonio’s face. “I want the truth today and…”

“What the hell is going on here?” Emma hollered as she rushed down the stairs with Celine behind her. “What’s going on guys? You’re arguing again?”

“Thank God you’re here, aunt!” Bruce said angrily, staring at Antonio. “You won’t believe what I just saw today at Antonio’s office.” He began narrating the story to her and he was tearing up. “Now what crime have I committed, aunt? Antonio is my husband and I just asked him what was going on!”

Emma gasped, feeling angry all of a sudden. “Travis again? What does that boy want? It’s like he’s becoming the cancer of this house and I don’t like it. Whatever problem that comes here, Travis is responsible for it. Antonio…” She paused and turned to him. “… what‘s going on with you? Why were you…”

“Look, I am not a child, okay!” He said rudely, surprising everyone there. That was the first time Antonio spoke rudely to her. “I know exactly what I am doing. And if Bruce doesn’t want to believe me then he can go and…” He paused and looked at Bruce. “…hug a transformer for all I care.”

Bruce felt like someone had just pierced his heart with a hot arrow. He could feel it burning and it hurt like hell.

“I am done with this.”

He made and turn and left them there alone.

Bruce couldn’t mask his tears. It was just too painful. “I can go and hug a transformer!” He gasped, rubbing his tears. “My husband just told me that. Travis…” He clenched his fists. “…it is now on, I swear to you. You’ll pay for this big time.”

He furiously stormed out of the living room, rushing upstairs.

“What’s going on in this house?” Emma rubbed her forehead, glancing at Andrea who shrugged. “This has got to stop. We need to find ways to get rid of that boy, I swear. Since he came back, he’s made our lives a living hell. I just can’t take this anymore.”

***

“Oh my God, this is beautiful!” Travis gasped, looking at the beautiful things on the bed. “You didn’t have to.”

“So that you’d have killed me?” Santiago teased, laughing softly. “No, thank you very much!”

Travis raised his eyebrow but he was just too happy to pretend to be angry. Santiago had bought him wonderful things. He had bought him a gorgeous fashionable suit that looked expensive, some gold necklaces and a really expensive 24-carat gold watch that he loved. It was really beautiful.

“You’re crazy but this is beautiful, Santiago!” Travis went to where he was standing and wrapped his arms around him, kissing his cheek. “Thank you so much. I love them.”

“You’re welcome,” Santiago responded softly, slowly closing his eyes. He felt such warmth when he hugged Travis. “I also bought a lot of toys for Sean. He was really happy. Good thing I arrived the time I did yesterday.”

Travis was really happy and he didn’t know how to express it. They were in his room and he had already showered and changed into black sweatpants with a green vest. His hair was loose and he had sandals on his feet. He still couldn’t believe that Santiago had come. He was really happy.

“So… how is it going with work?” Santiago asked when he pulled away from the hug. “You look really good and I am sure everything is going great at work.”

Travis sighed, losing the smile on his face. “Everything is going fine and I am sure that…” He paused and took a deep breath. “…Aunt Vanessa told you that I managed to enter Antonio’s company.”

They both walked to the balcony and sat on the comfy chairs there, just enjoying the cool breeze that was hitting their faces.

“She mentioned something like that but I figured maybe I’d ask you in person,” Santiago said as he poured some champagne in two glasses that were there. He offered one to Travis. “How are you, Travis? I mean, are you okay confronting your past like that? Honestly, I am really worried because I know exactly what you went through.”

Travis chuckled bitterly, running his fingers through his hair. “I know, Santiago. I know exactly what I went through. I nearly died because of it but thanks to you…” He paused and tried to be confident and strong. “…I am still alive and I was given another reason to live, Sean!”

Santiago could tell that Travis was still hurt by it but he didn’t wanna ask him.

“But my past pain is my driving force, Santiago!” He clenched his fist. “I am stronger now… I am more confident and more powerful. That was Praveen and this is Travis Marasigan. They can’t hurt me and whatever pain I go through whenever I see them is nothing compared to the pain I experienced six years ago. I just have to endure it!”

Santiago sighed, taking a sip of his champagne. “And what about… him? How was his reaction when he first saw you?”

Travis laughed. “He wanted to hurt me but I put him in his place. I slapped him. And as for that Andrea and Bruce…” He chuckled manically when he remembered all the encounters he had with them. “…they have learned not to mess with me.”

Santiago raised an eyebrow. “Really?”

“Trust me!” He smiled brightly. “That family crushed me, Santiago. They paralyzed me and they made me wish for death. Because of what had happened, I lost my dignity and I just wanted to die. I will make them feel what they made me go through and I will bring the truth to light.”

Santiago chuckled softly. “I understand.”

“Antonio used me, he deceived me and then used his love to destroy me.” He said with a bitter chuckle. “But out of all that pain, I just thank the almighty that I got something, my strength and my reason to live. And that’s Sean.”

“Thank God for that indeed.” He put the glass down. “And Aunt told me that Antonio’s grandmother is here?”

“Yes!” Travis nodded. “She’s sick, Santiago. She’s got a mental problem and I just couldn’t stand seeing her like that. I had to do something even though I knew that it was risky.”

He began narrating the story to Santiago who was paying attentively and at some point, he held Travis’ hands and caressed them as he listened. God, he had missed him so much. He couldn’t believe he was staring right into his beautiful face.

“So… I brought her here.”

“Whoa!” Santiago rubbed on his face. “You sure have been busy and I am glad you haven’t changed. You’re still the same loving, beautiful, and compassionate boy I met years ago, only stronger.”

They both burst into laughter.

“Anyway, how’s your brother?”

“Perfect!” Santiago gestured. “He was greeting you. Said he was gonna visit soon.”

Travis nodded but lost the smile on his face. “Anyway, I never really apologized to him or you about what happened six years.” He was feeling really bad. “You guys got dragged into this mess and it was all my fault.”

“What?” Santiago gasped. “What are you saying? You didn’t…”

“No, Santiago!” He shook his head. “If I hadn’t agreed to that photoshoot, we wouldn’t have known each other and become close. And if I had just kept quiet about that wedding proposal for Andrea, then none of this mess would have happened. You’re a good man and you abandoned the life you had because of me and…”

“Shh….” Santiago blocked Travis’ lips with his finger. The other handheld his hand tightly, sweetly rubbing on it. “I don’t want you to blame yourself for anything. Only the Almighty knows why it happened like that.

I don’t have any regrets about meeting you and I don’t regret that we had that photoshoot together.” He gave a genuine smile, his hand caressing Travis’ cheek. “Things might not have gone well for us but meeting you is one of the best things that has ever happened to me. Yeah, we abandoned the life we had in this country but the life that we now have is far much better. Uncle Richard made our lives brand new and it’s because of you. My brother met his soulmate and they are now married with a kid because of you.”

Travis smiled, enjoying the warmth of Santiago’s hand on his cheek.

“You’re a blessing to me, you and Sean. I thank the almighty for you every day. Besides, if not for you, I wouldn’t have believed in him.”

Travis burst into laughter. “You’re crazy.”

“It’s the truth and now that I am back…” He paused and gave a bright smile. “… I promise you that we’ll find out the truth together. We’ll get the justice that both of us deserve and we’ll make sure that the people that did this are punished. I swear!”

Travis felt tears of joy building in his eyes. He was so emotional and he lay his head on Santiago’s lap, letting the tears flow. Santiago passed his hands in Travis’ hair, playing with it. It was a gorgeous moment but before Travis enjoyed it, he heard his phone ringing inside his room. He excused himself and went to answer it.

“I’ll make sure you get justice even if it’s the last thing I do. I swear!”

***

Antonio entered his beautiful mansion with a towel wrapped around his neck. He was sweaty and stinky after spending the entire morning and part of the afternoon in the gym, trying to get rid of his anger. But that day, it didn’t work and he had no idea why. He just kept on thinking about Travis and he had no idea why. But what angered him, even more, was when he remembered what Bruce had said to him that morning. He was really mad.

As soon as he entered, he saw Emma calling him to the living room where Emma, Andrea, and Bruce were seated quietly. He walked there but he didn’t want any more drama.

“My son, please, come and sit down,” Emma said, holding his hands sweetly. “I want to talk to you.”

Antonio glanced at his husband, taking a sigh before he sat with Emma. She had his hands held together, smiling brightly.

“Antonio, you know how much I love you, right?”

Antonio nodded without saying anything else.

“It’s a good thing you know.” Emma chuckled softly. “I don’t like what’s been going on in this house. It all started since that Travis or whatever his name suddenly made an entrance into our lives. Every day, there’s always one problem or another and all because of him. I don’t want this family to break apart, please.” She put her hands together, her face becoming sad. “We’ve worked so hard to ensure that we stay together. Please, don’t let what we’ve built all these years just fall like that.”

Antonio looked at his aunt, feeling some guilt getting ahold of him. “Aunt, what are you saying?” He held her hands. “If there’s…”

“I am sorry!” Bruce threw himself on his knees near Antonio, putting his hands together. “I was just hurt and I spoke out of anger. You know that I love you so much, Antonio. I can’t live knowing that you’re upset with me. Please, forgive me.”

Antonio had no idea why he was suddenly losing his cool with Bruce. He looked at him and his anger rose. Again, he looked at Emma and she was gesturing him towards Bruce. “Please, baby…” She said softly. “…forgive him. He’s your husband?”

“I am sorry!” Bruce sobbed, fake tears coming out of his eyes. “I will never doubt you like that again. I love you so much and I want us to be the way we were before all this. Antonio…” He chuckled in his tears, looking like he was remembering something. “…do you remember that before all this storm even started, we were so in love with each other? Back when we were abroad, we used to be the ideal couple. Everyone admired our love and they always said we were meant to be.

I always dreamt of the day that you’d marry me and now I still can’t believe we’re married.” He chuckled, rubbing his tears. “I want us to go back to the way we were, my love. Please, I love you so much. Forgive me doubting you. I promise, I’ll be the best husband ever and I’ll never doubt you again. Please,” He took Antonio’s hands, rubbing on them sweetly. “Baby, please, forgive me.”

Antonio was dumbstruck, staring at Bruce like he had sprouted horns or something. He didn’t know what to say to him.

“Antonio…” Andrea moved from her seat and sat with him, wrapping an arm around his shoulder. “…you’re my brother and I love you so much. Forgive Bruce and I promise that what happened today will never repeat itself. He’ll be the best husband, ever. You trust your sister, right?”

Antonio glanced at Andrea and had no choice but to nod. “Okay, I forgive you.” He muttered.

Bruce gasped, feeling like he’s just won a billion dollars. He couldn’t believe Antonio had just forgiven him.

“Oh my God,” He pressed his lips on Antonio’s and kissed him softly right in front of everyone.

Andrea and Emma clapped, cheering for the kissing couple. But even though that kiss, Antonio was frozen. His lips didn’t move and neither did his eyes close. Bruce on the other hand was sucking on his husband’s lips like there was no tomorrow, like a hungry whore.

“Thank you so much, babe!” He chuckled happily, hugging his husband. “I love you so much!”

Antonio gulped. “Love you too.”

Bruce was on top of the moon. He was acting happily and he was excited.

Antonio was supposed to feel better, right? Then why did he still feel such a heavy burden, such anger, and pain in his heart? He didn’t get it. Maybe it was because he had had enough of all the drama and maybe of the Bruce, too.

“Excuse me!” He said softly, getting up from the couch.

Antonio was lost deep in thought as he walked towards the staircase. He didn’t even know what he was confused about. Everything was supposed to solve itself right? Then he started thinking about the position that he had found himself in with Travis in the morning, the kiss at the party, and the way Travis took care of him that night.

He slowly moved his hand, staring at it. It was bandaged perfectly and he didn’t even feel any pain. He didn’t even bleed throughout his entire work out. Shit! What was wrong with him, he thought shaking his head? He shouldn’t have been thinking about Travis like that.

Antonio was almost reaching the staircase when suddenly he felt someone bump into his legs hard, getting him out of his thoughts. He wondered who it was and turned to find a great surprise.

As soon as he turned, he found himself staring into really beautiful green eyes, a cute little face, maybe too cute and a handsome kid. The little kid was dressed in a black shirt that was tucked in a white skinny jeans with white sneakers on his little feet. He was staring right up at him with a blank face, looking a little scared.

When Antonio saw him, he felt a shiver go down his spine. He didn’t know what was going but he had never seen a kid as beautiful as him. There was something strange that Antonio felt the moment he lay his eyes on him, a deeper feeling of excitement and confusion. His heart instantly raced and he couldn’t breathe for a few seconds.

“I am sorry, uncle!” The kid said in a really sweet voice. “I am so sorry.”

Antonio chuckled, feeling a deeper feeling of happiness when he heard that sweet voice. He slowly knelt in front of the kid, staring right into his face. He reminded him of someone, but who? He wasn’t even thinking straight at that time.

His hand moved shakily to touch the boy’s cute face. As soon as he touched the boy, he felt a sharp vibration pass through his entire body, taking away his anger and all the pain he felt. He found himself smiling and tearing up. He had never smiled the way he did at that time in the last six years.

“What’s your name?” He asked, caressing the boy’s cheeks.

The boy looked a bit scared. “Sean!”

Antonio felt like crying and he had no idea why. “Sean? Wow! That’s a really beautiful name. And you’re very handsome, Sean. You’re handsome.”

Sean smiled brightly, feeling a wonderful bond with the handsome man in front of him. “Why are you crying, uncle? I didn’t mean to bump into you. You can punish me, uncle. I am sorry.”

Antonio didn’t even realize that his face was wet with tears. It was only when the kid spoke when he realized it. He chuckled softly, rubbing his tears. But they came flowing and he didn’t understand why. He was happy… he was peaceful… he felt a really strong connection with the boy. Not even Stephanie had made him feel the way he felt at that time.

“I am not crying.” He chuckled excitedly, more tears wetting his face. “I am happy. I am very happy. How old are you, Sean?”

“Five!” Sean jumped, raising his fingers.

Antonio sobbed, holding the boy’s hands sweetly. “Wow, Sean… Five? That’s great.”

Then just like a flash, Antonio took the boy into his arms and hugged him tightly, kissing his forehead. Why was he acting as an emotional fool? It was confusing.

Emma and her league were shocked as fuck. They stared at the scene with their hands on their mouths and their eyes gaping, almost popping out of their sockets. They were shocked because they’d never seen Antonio smile like that and cry out of happiness. Each of them had the same question running in their mind, ‘who was the kid?’

And when Celine came inside with Stephanie, she was just as shocked as everyone. She stood at the entrance, staring at Antonio as he’d just grown another head. She couldn’t believe what she saw. Antonio was hugging Sean with tears on his face and a smile that she hadn’t seen in years. It was shocking? What was going on?

Antonio hugged the boy for a long time, enjoying the warmth and peace that he felt. When he pulled away, the little boy rubbed his tears slowly.

“Don’t cry, uncle,” Sean said in his tiny voice, rubbing his face clean.

Antonio laughed, kissing both his cheeks. “I won’t.” He nodded, rubbing his cheeks. His smile was heavenly and it made Antonio’s heart race. “So tell me, my little friend, who are your parents and where do you stay?” Antonio thought that one of the servants had brought home his child.

Sean laughed. “My papa’s name is…”

“He’s Stephanie’s friend from school.” Celine chimed in, walking sexily to him with a smile. “They met a month ago and so today, we asked his grandmother if he could come and visit. Her name is Vanessa and she’s a wonderful woman.”

“Vanessa!” Antonio smiled, staring at the boy.

“Yes! Are you okay, though?” Celine asked, sounding a little worried. “You don’t…”

“Of course,” He nodded. “I am fine. I don’t know why I felt so happy seeing this boy. I just felt… I don’t know.” He couldn’t describe what he had felt. It was a really strange feeling.

“I know.” Celine sighed. “And I understand you. He’s a really cute boy and I like him a lot. The very first time I saw him, I had a strange feeling too. He’s a good boy and Stephanie likes him too. So today, I brought them together. I just hope it’s alright with…”

“Why wouldn’t it be alright?” Antonio looked at the boy again and smiled. “He’s welcome here anytime.”

“Thanks, uncle!” Stephanie ran to him and hugged him tightly. “I love you.”

“Love you too.” He kissed her cheek.

Stephanie chuckled and held Sean’s hand. “Let’s go, Sean. I will show you my room and my toys.”

Sean looked at Antonio, waving at him. “Goodbye, handsome uncle!”

“Bye!” Antonio waved, rising from the floor.

He watched as the two kids ran upstairs until he couldn’t see them anymore. Even when he couldn’t see them, he still stared. He just wanted to follow that kid and hold him till eternity and he didn’t understand why he felt that way.

Antonio almost jumped out of his skin when he felt a hand on his shoulder.

“Are you sure you’re okay?” Celine asked with a frown on her face.

“Yeah, I just need to shower.”

He patted on her shoulder and rushed upstairs. Antonio stopped and smiled when he heard Sean’s voice. It brought so much joy to him.

Back in the living room…

“Did you see that?” Emma asked, looking at the two. “I have never seen him like that before.”

“Me too, aunt!” Andrea gasped. “He doesn’t act like that. Not even with Steph but that boy… he made him cry and smile. I have never seen a smile like that on his face for years now.”

Emma chuckled, smiling brightly. “I think I know what you guys need.”

“What?” Bruce frowned, wondering what she meant.

“A child, Bruce! You guys need to have a child. I am sure that will solve the problem.”

Bruce felt a wave of excitement go down his spine and he smiled, almost blushing. “I think you’re right aunt. You’re right. He loves Steph a lot and now a child he just met. I think he’ll love our child even more and that’ll bring us even closer.”

They all agreed and smiled. Bruce had just found a permanent solution to his problems with Antonio. He was gonna have him forever with it. He couldn’t wait to see Travis lose. Question was, was his plan gonna work?

***

Travis was coming out of the kitchen with a glass of juice when he met with Vanessa who was smiling brightly, playing with her phone.

“And where’s my beautiful aunt going?” He asked, leaning on the wall and acting like he was teasing her. “Have you finally decided to…”

“You crazy boy!” She laughed. “My grandson is back. Stephanie’s mother just called that they’re already here so I am gonna meet her.”

Travis put the glass on a small table. “Why didn’t you say so? I think it’s about time I got to meet her.”

“That’d be great. Let’s go.”

Travis nodded and both of them started going outside. He had wanted to meet the woman before allowing his son to visit but unfortunately, he had been too busy. When Vanessa had called him that afternoon that Sean was gonna be going with Steph home, he had given his permission since he trusted his aunt a lot.

Meanwhile, Celine was standing outside her car with Sean, holding him tightly. She was checking out the place, looking all around the place. And she had thought that their place was marvelous. That was a really beautiful place, like a palace. Everything seemed classy, including the guards at the gate.

Celine took a deep breath and looked at the entrance where she saw Vanessa coming out with a brilliant smile. But her phone started ringing in the car and she quickly opened the door to the car to go and pick up her phone from the bag.

At that moment, Travis came out and once his son saw him, he rushed to him and Travis gripped him in his arms.

“Oh my baby, I missed you so much.” He moaned, kissing him on the forehead.

“I missed you too, daddy.”

Travis pulled away but was looking into his son’s face. “And how was your day? Did you have fun?”

“I did. I also met a handsome uncle.” He chuckled happily.

Travis frowned. “Handsome uncle? Who’s that?”

“I don’t know his name. He’s a handsome uncle.”

“Okay.” Travis smiled brightly. “And now that you’re back, what do you want daddy to do for you?”

“I want to show you the toys that uncle Santiago bought for me. Come on!” He started pulling Travis inside.

“Sean, I was about to…”

“Come on, papa…”

Travis sighed. “Okay. Let’s go.”

Celine got off the phone and looked towards the entrance. She could see Sean going inside with a man that had his back to her. She was curious to see who it was about but she couldn’t see his face.

“Was that Sean’s father?” She asked, smiling brightly.

“Yeah!” Vanessa breathed in deeply. “He wanted to meet you so bad but you know how kids are. Why don’t you come in for dinner so that you can both meet?”

Celine sighed, running her fingers in her hair. “I can’t. I have to run now. My husband just called and he wants us to go on a date so.”

“Oh yeah,” Vanessa laughed. “You youngsters need to go on dates whenever you can. You’ll thank me later.”

Celine smiled, taking a sigh. “Anyway, I will see you later, miss Vanessa.”

She gave her a quick hug and left quickly. She was in a hurry.

***

Somewhere deep in a village

*

‘Who are you? What do you want from me? Why did you bring me here?’

‘None of your business, old bitch!’ A deep manly voice echoed. ‘You’ve messed with the wrong people, old lady. The next time, you’ll learn to keep your eyes and ears closed for things that don’t concern you.’

And then there was a loud sound of a gunshot.

Suddenly, the old woman’s eyes flung open. Her breaths started getting harsh and her heart began racing, fear getting the best of her. At first, she couldn’t see anything. All she could see was a blurry image and nothing else. But then things started getting clear and she saw that she was in a small room, on a drip and an oxygen mask on her face.

At first, Katy felt like she was dead but then she realized that she was probably in a hospital. She didn’t understand how because the last thing she could remember was being beaten to a pulp and the sound of a gunshot. She was really scared.

Katy tried to move but she was so weak. She winced and tried again but she was unable. She didn’t know where she was but all she knew was that she had to get out of there. She couldn’t stay there because she was afraid for her own life.

‘Almighty,” She slightly closed her eyes, praying in her heart. ‘Please, save me for the sake of what I carry in my heart. Please!’

Katy opened her eyes slowly. She managed to move her right hand and removed her oxygen mask. She proceeded to move her drip and it hurt like hell. But she had to do it. She used both her hand, leaned on the bed, and finally managed to get up. But she was so weak and she knew that she wasn’t gonna go far. But she had to try.

Katy put her legs on the floor and tried to get up but she fell with a thud on the floor, wincing. It hurt and she started feeling dizzy all of a sudden. Then she got a splitting headache that made her feel like her head was gonna burst. Everything on her body hurt. It was too much.

Katy tried to get up but she couldn’t. She was really weak and pale. She tried to think of something but heard footsteps coming towards the room and she knew that she was in trouble. She closed her eyes shut, feeling her heart sink into her stomach.

Suddenly the door opened and…

“Ma’am…” She heard a scared voice and then someone holding her. “…I can’t believe this. You’re finally awake. This is a miracle.”

Katy opened her eyes slowly when she felt someone raising her. It wasn’t one but two beautiful women with smiles on their faces. One was dressed beautifully in a white tight shirt with black skinny jeans and a pure white lab coat and a stethoscope around her neck. Katy presumed she was the doctor and the other was dressed in a nurse’s uniform.

They both helped her sit on the bed and put pillows where she lay her back, staring at both of them like they were ghosts. She seemed scared.

“Ma’am, you don’t have to be scared,” Abigail assured, rubbing on her hands sweetly. “You’re safe here. No one will hurt you. I promise.”

“Who… who are you?” The woman’s voice shook.

She smiled. “My name is Dr. Abigail and this is my nurse. We’re both here to help you.”

Katy felt a wave of peace hit her. She held on tightly to Abigail. “How long have I been here? Where am I? What happened and…”

“Ma’am… I will tell you everything. But please, calm down and eat something…”

“No!” She shook her head abruptly.

Abigail sighed and then sent the nurse to go and prepare some soup for her. She sat with Katy, rubbing on her hand. God knew happy she was that the old lady had woken up. She had almost lost all hope.

“Well, ma’am, we found you in a river five months ago.” She said softly, watching as the woman’s eyes widened. “You were badly injured and had a terrible wound on your shoulder. It looked like a bullet wound but we didn’t find any bullet. We thought you were dead at first but then we were surprised that you were still alive. I wanted to take you to the hospital in the capital for a quick recovery but I thought maybe your life was in danger and…”

“You mean, for the last five months…”

“You’ve been in a coma for five months, ma’am.” Abigail chimed in, watching the woman’s eyes widen. “It’s a miracle that you’re awake now.”

Katy couldn’t believe that she had been in a coma for five months. She remembered clearly what had happened now. She had been on her way to see Antonio when she was kidnapped, beaten up, and shot. The last she remembered was falling off a cliff and…

“That means he doesn’t know,” Katy muttered and then looked at the doctor, tears forming in her eyes. “Please, I need to go back to the capital as soon as possible. I need to tell Antonio something important. He needs to know that…”

“I can’t allow you to do that ma’am.” Abigail shook her head. “You just woke up and I need to carry out some tests on you.”

“I am fine!” Katy winced. “But I must do this. It’s very important.”

She tried to get up but the doctor made her sit again. “Ma’am, you’re still very weak. You need to completely recover. Going to the capital now will be too dangerous for you. I can’t risk your health like that. It’s very far away.”

“I don’t care.” She tried to get up but was hit by a terrible headache that made her wince. She rubbed on her head. “I… I need….”

“Ma’am calm down.” The doctor got up and started taking the woman’s vitals. “I promise you that as soon as you recover, I will personally take you to the capital and make sure that you reach your family safely.”

“You… you don’t understand… I…”

“I promise ma’am.” She said, holding her hands tightly. “I swear on my life. I will take you to the capital as soon as you get better. You will not be harmed but first, I need to make sure that you’re fit and you’re completely fine.”

“I… I need… to tell Antonio… the truth.”

Those were the last words she said before she passed out. The doctor checked her and she seemed to be doing fine. But she needed to keep her under observation before taking her to her family. Hopefully, it wasn’t gonna take too long.

***

“Well, it’s not my fault that I am sexy and seductive,” Bruce said with a wink, smiling at Andrea. “Everyone in the industry wants a piece of Bruce. My body is to die for. They don’t just call me the greatest supermodel for nothing. You know exactly what I bring to the table.”

Both of them laughed happily. They had just entered Tonzalez blue building and they were slaying as usual with Andrea wearing a black, sexy tight, short dress that showed her marvelous curves with yellow high heels on her feet with a short-sleeved coat. Her makeup was on point and that day, she was dressed to kill. Her hair was made into bombshell curls and since she got out of the car, she had people staring at her.

Bruce on the other hand was killing it in a cream white short-sleeved shirt which was tucked in a sexy red designer’s trousers with black shoes on his feet and a black coat that just made him look amazing, according to Andrea. He had his hair in a Dutch braid low ponytail, revealing his face.

As soon as they both entered, their eyes caught on the person that they had been dying to see that morning, Travis Marasigan. He was handing some files to a tall lady, instructing her, and smiling at her. When they saw him, they looked at each other evilly, smiling like evil geniuses.

Travis on the other hand was giving some of the sketches for the new shoe line to one of the members of his team. Since their latest brand had been going great and attracting a lot of contracts, Travis thought of releasing another one together with his team. Everything seemed to be going just fine.

Travis was dressed a little extra sexy that day. He was wearing a long-sleeved silvery shirt which was halfway buttoned-up, revealing his sexy hairless chest on which a beautiful gold chain was lying, the one that Santiago had bought for him. The shirt was tucked in a sexy black skinny jean with blue and silvery shoes on his feet.

He had a gorgeous see-through coat on him which seemed to have a tail that almost reached his legs. He was looking so gorgeous, showing his curves to the entire world. His hair was made into a textured half-up which made him super sexy. Only God knew the number of people that he had drooling that day. Plus, he also had that watch Santiago had given him and he was super-hot.

“Okay, take these and I’ll join you later.” He instructed. “I need to make an important call.”

Travis smiled and turned. He started heading towards the reception with a smile on his face. He was about to get his phone out when all of a sudden…

“Hey, bitch!” He heard a familiar voice holler, his voice echoing on that floor. “Whore, I am talking to you.”

Travis didn’t need to be a genius to know that it was Bruce and he was calling him. Shit! He got really upset but continued walking. He didn’t need any drama.

“Bitch! Whore! Travis, we’re talking to you.” Andrea shouted.

Travis stopped in his tracks, losing the smile on his face. His heart started racing and anger took the best of him. He knew that there were workers on that floor and they were probably watching them at that moment. He had had enough of them.

With a groan, Travis turned and he was wearing the most beautiful smile ever. He was just in time to see Bruce and Andrea looking at him like he was disgusting.

“Well, you have no shame.” Bruce glowered, looking at Travis from head to toe. “You won’t ever stop, will you? Is that also for my husband?”

Travis looked at himself and then at the two. “Are you talking to me, Bruce?”

“Who else?” Andrea teased, taking a deep breath. “Do you see anyone else as cheap as you in this building?”

Travis chuckled without even responding.

“Who do you think you’re kidding? We all know what you’re up to.” Bruce warned, pointing his finger at Travis. “You’re obviously trying to seduce my husband but guess what, my husband loves me so much and no matter what you do or how much you try, our love will keep on getting stronger and stronger. Seriously…” He paused and folded his arms on his chest, grinning. “…is it now your goal to sleep with every guy in the city?”

Travis was still wearing that smile on his face that made the two angry. “You can think whatever you want, Bruce. And as for your husband, he doesn’t even turn me on at all. As I said, you can keep him. He’s all yours.”

Bruce chuckled bitterly, getting closer. “You can pretend all you want. But I just wanted to tell you that I love my husband a lot and I will go to any length to deal with whoever wants to separate us. Do you think by following him everywhere like a cheap whore he will notice you? You’re wasting your time.”

Travis raised an eyebrow and then started clapping, getting closer. “Wow! That was a great speech, Bruce. You deserve an Oscar for that, I swear. But you know what, you’re talking to the wrong person. If you think your husband is a sex freak and he can be easily seduced, then I suggest you keep him on a leash and keep a close eye on him.”

“What the fuck!” Bruce lost his cool. “How dare you!” He raised his hand to slap Travis.

But Travis gripped his hand and threw it away, making Bruce take a step back.

“I don’t know what the heck you want from me!” Travis lost the smile on his face. “But if it is trouble you want then I dare you to cross my path. Maybe you guys haven’t learned anything from all our encounters.”

“What fucking lesson?” Bruce snapped. “You’re just a lonely, horny fool that…”

“Really?” Travis laughed. They were many workers watching. “Watch your mouth, Bruce. Watch it because you’re gonna swallow those words.”

“You can’t do anything and…”

Before Bruce even finished his sentence, his phone started ringing loudly. He furiously gripped it and answered it without even seeing who was calling.

“Hello….”

But the moment Bruce heard who was calling and what they said, his eyes became glassy… his heart began racing and he visibly shook in fear, taking a few weak steps back. A tear went down his cheek and his mouth shook in fear.

“What?” He gasped. “No! They can’t do that to me, please…”

More tears flooded his face as he heard what they had to say again. Andrea on the other hand got confused when she saw how weak Bruce seemed and how wet his face was. She didn’t understand what the hell was going on.

“No, please wait… hello. Hello?”

But the phone had already been cut. Bruce raised his face, staring at Travis who was giving an evil grin, staring right back at him. He had never felt as weak as he felt at that time or as scared as he was. His heart pounded so violently in his chest that he felt like he was gonna have a heart attack.

“Did you do this?” Bruce asked painfully, more tears decorating his face. “Did you?”

But Travis didn’t answer. He was just staring at Bruce, enjoying the tears on his face.

“Bruce, what’s going on?” Andrea asked, wrapping an arm around him. “Are you okay?”

Bruce looked at Andrea and sobbed. “It’s… it’s elite model management.” He stuttered. “They’ve canceled my contract with them and all their sister companies.”

Andrea felt her heart pound in her chest sharply, covering her mouth. “But how could they do that? I thought the contract you made with them was until you retired. This is unfair.”

Bruce couldn’t take it anymore. He broke right there, crying like a little child. Elite model management was the best, richest, and biggest modeling company in the entire world. Bruce was the most sort after supermodel of the company and he was also the highest-paid model. They called him the king of supermodels because they said he was the best they ever had. To say that his contract had been canceled was shocking.

And if Bruce was not gonna be able to model for the sister companies as well, it meant that he was as good as dead. He felt like someone had pierced his heart with a hot arrow. It was painful and he had never experienced that pain before.

“Come on,” Andrea said as she gave Travis a really cold look. “Let’s get out of here. We’ll call them and everything will be okay.”

Bruce and Andrea went away from there and the cries from Bruce could be heard. Travis on the other hand just smiled evilly and walked gracefully out of there. The joy that was in his heart was from out of this world.

Meanwhile, Andrea and Bruce reached Andrea’s classy office and she was holding him tightly.

“This cannot be, Andrea.” Bruce cried uncontrollably. “They cannot do this to me. I am the greatest supermodel to have ever graced that company. They cannot just do this to me. I am ruined, Andrea.”

“Shh…” Andrea rubbed on his back, making him sit on the chair. “…everything will be okay. We’re gonna call them and demand answers. They cannot do this to you. Let me give Antonio a call. He’ll know what to do.”

Andrea quickly turned to pick up her phone but the moment she did, she felt like someone had hit her in the chest with a heavyweight. She failed to breathe… when her heart gave a pound in her chest, it felt like it had been pierced by a needle… she felt really cold and her entire body froze right there. Her eyes widened, almost popping out of her sockets, and tears formed there.

Then like a flush, she started screaming her assistant’s name like she was going crazy. She was mad and her breaths were heavy. It was as if she was in labor or something. Never had she ever been that angry.

Her assistant came rushing in and the poor thing looked scared.

“Ma’am…”

“What the fuck is that?” She pointed to the table where a beautiful nameplate was. “Who the fuck had put that there? How many times have I told you never to allow anyone in my office when I am not here?”

The assistant glanced at the table and she suddenly felt goosebumps. She gulped, tears forming in her eyes. “I am sorry, ma… am…”

“You’re sorry!” Andrea furiously raised her hand, smacking her so hard across the face that she went flying to the floor. “You’re fucking sorry! Do you think this is a joke? This is my office and not that whore’s office so get that thing out of there!” She pointed to the golden nameplate on the table.

Andrea was so upset that she didn’t just see red. Her eyes instantly turned red.

The assistant got up, holding her cheek. It was really painful and it left a mark. “That’s what I wanted to tell you, ma’am. You’re no longer the vice president of this company. The board of directors has elected Mr. Marasigan as the new vice president of Tonzalez blue.”

Andrea’s heart gave the mother of all pounds, taking her entire strength away. She almost fell if not for the chair that was close to her.

‘The board of directors has elected Mr. Marasigan as the new vice president of Tonzalez blue.’

Andrea couldn’t fight her tears. She didn’t know when her face got wet or when she started trembling. Her eyes moved on the floor like she was searching for something but the name, ‘Travis’ kept on ringing in her head and it felt like she was gonna explode. She furiously covered her ears but nothing was working.

Bruce on the other hand was dumbstruck and he kept staring at the nameplate like he was expecting something to come out of it. He had even forgotten about his sorrows.

‘Mr. T. Marasigan, Vice president!’ Those were the words on the nameplate. It felt like Travis was haunting him at that time.

“No! This can’t happen!”

Andrea stormed out of the room, running like the hounds of hell were after her. She didn’t even hear Bruce calling her and running after her. She was just angrily rubbing her face and it didn’t take any time for her to reach the conference room where she stormed in like a tornado, making the board members surprised.

“What the fuck did I hear?” Andrea hit her fist on the table. “How dare you do this to me? You don’t….”

“Miss Gonzalez, this is a private meeting.” One of the board members said. “Please…”

“Private meeting?” Andrea threw all the documents that were on the table to the floor. “Since when did you start having meetings without me? Who do you think you are? This is our family company. You can’t just remove me…”

“We voted on it.” The man said angrily, standing up. “Lately, it seems you don’t even know what you’re doing. Your behavior is not helping us and we can’t risk losing any more clients because of the bad reputation you’re portraying out there. For now, we think Mr. Marasigan is the best candidate for such a position, Miss Gonzalez. He’s only been here for a short period but has brought so much glory to this company.”

“No!” Andrea fumed, tears flooding her face. “You can’t do that to me. My brother is…”

“The majority of us voted Mr. Marasigan. Antonio being the president won’t help you in this situation. We’re trying to help the company.” The man spoke softly. “You’re still a member of the board. The only difference is that now Mr. Marasigan will take your position, your office, and your duties.”

Andrea sobbed, shaking her head. “You’ll pay for this. All of you. I promise you this. You’ll pay. Fuck you all.”

She stormed out of the room, banging the door behind her. When she got out, she found Bruce waiting outside and his face was wet. She rushed into his arms and both cried together like little kids. It was really painful.

What happened? Could it be Travis’ doing? What is he trying to do?

Find out in the next chapter….

Copyright © 2020 vanalas; All Rights Reserved.

Thanks a lot to everyone that took the time to read my work. I really love you all guys a lot. Don't forget to drop your comments about what you really think about my work

Recommended Comments

Chapter Comments

I love it, when I get the notifications a new chapter is posted I have to read ASAP I am loving Travis, oh how the ‘mighty’ have fallen. I look forward to the next chapter 🥰🥰

  • Like 1
  • Haha 2

Share this comment


Link to comment

@Vanalas..thanks so much for that update.. I needed something to lighten my day and you did. Gonna keep counting the hours till the next update🤣😂.Thanks and take care!

 

  • Like 1
  • Love 1

Share this comment


Link to comment

😂 I wonder what strings Travis pulled to get Bruce fired especially as contracts can be hard to break. With all his money maybe he bought the majority shares or possibly even bought the modeling agency in order to get such control. I love seeing Andrea spiraling out of control and making her situation worse as I’m sure the board doesn’t want someone with that attitude as Vice President. The meeting between Antonio and Sean was kinda sweet. I still hate Antonio with a passion but I feel he as a right to know his son....though maybe supervised visits as I wouldn’t put it past an entitled person like Antonio to kidnap his own son due to his anger towards Travis/Praveen not to mention his ridiculous ego would likely tell him that Sean is better off with him. 🙄 Not surprising to see with the whole riot situation that Antonio is just as bipolar as ever as he acted similarly with Praveen as he’d be sweet one minute and abusive the next. He needs therapy ASAP.

  • Haha 2

Share this comment


Link to comment

I love deserved karma, and this story doesn't disappoint! Hopefully this is only the tip of the iceberg as far as what Bruce and Andrea get! I was very surprised at Antonio's reaction to Sean. Its nice to see that he actually has a heart somewhere in there. 

Share this comment


Link to comment
5 hours ago, Seraph28 said:

@Vanalas..thanks so much for that update.. I needed something to lighten my day and you did. Gonna keep counting the hours till the next update🤣😂.Thanks and take care!

 

Thanks a lot. I'm humbled and I'll deliver without disappoint 

  • Like 1
  • Love 1

Share this comment


Link to comment

Oh Bruce, Oh Andrea, 🤦‍♂️Farewell, farewell ! Parting is such sweet sorrow, or such we say best and just rewards.

Great chapter, I hope Katy brings three wooden stakes for Emma, Bruce, and Andrea as their souls are dead and their hearts are cold, and if involved as I believe then perhaps sharing deaths that are of the vampires will end their pain (or at least everyone else’s)!

  • Like 1

Share this comment


Link to comment
2 hours ago, NimirRaj said:

😂 I wonder what strings Travis pulled to get Bruce fired especially as contracts can be hard to break. With all his money maybe he bought the majority shares or possibly even bought the modeling agency in order to get such control. I love seeing Andrea spiraling out of control and making her situation worse as I’m sure the board doesn’t want someone with that attitude as Vice President. The meeting between Antonio and Sean was kinda sweet. I still hate Antonio with a passion but I feel he as a right to know his son....though maybe supervised visits as I wouldn’t put it past an entitled person like Antonio to kidnap his own son due to his anger towards Travis/Praveen not to mention his ridiculous ego would likely tell him that Sean is better off with him. 🙄 Not surprising to see with the whole riot situation that Antonio is just as bipolar as ever as he acted similarly with Praveen as he’d be sweet one minute and abusive the next. He needs therapy ASAP.

Well...thoughts to consider, did Travis actually have to do anything other than be there to allow them to hang themselves? Interesting possibilities but I believe in many ways the endgame for Travis has been patience to let them choke on their own greed or to be caught in further acts of manipulation.

Remember the Mayor’s ball and other high visibility photo opportunities bring bad press; even if they are not directly responsible the industry can have negative attention, and that is never good. The same can be said for both Bruce and Andrea as they have brought negative attention to themselves, Antonio’s company and the products they indorse.

Also, as a model, Bruce should not be releasing/endorsing a product line that he has direct interest in; the conflict of interest itself could result in companies seeking fresh models to put a fresh face on their products.

  • Like 1

Share this comment


Link to comment
View Guidelines

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Our Privacy Policy can be found here. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue..