On the outside looking in, married couple Danica and Y/C Thompson have the perfect marriage. No kids at the moment, both very successful in their jobs, and living very comfortably for the past 3 years.
"She knew exactly what to do..."
Then Danica finds a message on her husband's phone. It seemed like nothing at first, just a simple Thank You. Until she opened it to read the entire thing to him. The way the sentences were worded, almost like a code, made her pause. She couldn't help but wonder if there was something else going on.
"A pseudonym to fool him..."
Afraid of confronting him, she decides to test him. How? She starts writing him letters. She had to see how he was going to react to another possible affair. Yes, it sounded dumb out loud, but the uneasiness and the fear were enough to help her see it through.
"She couldn't have made a worse move..."
For weeks, the two go back in forth, her watching her husband's reactions each time a new letter arrived, how he would hide away to read them...and how he would snatch them out of her hand when she picked one up.
"She sent him scented letters..."
Soon, she sets up a meeting place with him, to finally confront him after having the proof she needs. How will he react to her deception? How will she react to his unfaithfulness? Can the two make it work going forward, or are they heading for a divorce?
[center The saying goes, "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned."]
[center To some, it truly is just that: a saying. It has no meaning behind it. To others, however, that saying meant everything.]
[center One of these people was Mrs. Danica Thomson. Now, she had never considered herself a petty person, or the kind of person to even consider revenge on anybody. She had always believed that karma would come around tenfold and do the job that she was meant to do. However, as she lay in the bed she shared with her husband, staring at the text messages on his phone, she couldn't help but feel for just a moment that she had to do [i something.] He had been so dismissive when she had asked him about them that she knew something wasn't right.]
[center That was when she'd come up with the idea to start writing him letters. It had sounded dumb at first, since she wasn't sure how she was going to pull it off, but the more she thought about it, the more she realized she could just pretend to be a woman from his job. Just a faceless coworker. She, however, when drafting the first letter, had also realized that she couldn't use a name. Not right away. Otherwise, he might try to find the mystery woman. Then the whole plan would be ruined before it had a chance to even start.]
[center And so she started signing the letters [i Your Secret Admirer.] The first one had taken a week to actually write up since Danica had to debate how she wanted to go about it, but once it was said and done, everything fell into place. Her husband had been slow responding at first, puzzled when Danica had brought in the mail, handing him the envelope that contained that first little seed. Once that was over with, however... well, it had all been easy. Over the next three months, he would light up when receiving another letter from the "mystery woman." Danica would play along and pretend it was nothing, but only to keep him from catching on.]
[center Sitting inside the restaurant, Danica tapped her red fingers impatiently, watching the clock on the wall. The hands seemed to move in slow motion as she waited for her husband to arrive. Of course, he had no idea that it was her he would be meeting. No, in the last letter she had sent him, she'd told him her "name," claiming it was Athena, and that she just had to finally meet him. [i [b "I can't wait a moment longer. I have to see you alone. Outside of work. No wife, no bosses, just us."]] Hopefully, the letter had done its job.]
[center WIth her back to the door, just as she had intended for it to be, she wouldn't see it open when the clock struck seven, but she heard that familiar bell. She'd hate to have to keep the game going in her husband didn't show, though she knew it wouldn't be hard. She would guilt the hell out of him if he backed out on meeting her here.]
For years the male never thought this would be his life. He thought he would never be married. But he was. And at that he was very unhappy. This is not what he wanted for his life. His job was amazing, but his wife. There was just something about this life he didn't enjoy. So, he was going to do what he was best at. Self-sabotage.
Everything that was happening. He was planting. He was planting for her to find out. He wasn't careful at all. He wasn't treating her how he usually treats her. His parents always told him do what makes him happy. But he wasn't for sure what made him happy. He felt like he was missing something. He wasn't entirely sure. When he brought this idea up to his mother, she slapped him across the face. Maybe he wasn't getting enough attention? Goodness. He didn't even know himself.
Well things started to change. Bryson started to get letters from someone that he supposedly he worked with. The problem was that all the females at his job were married. They also didn't seem like the cheating type. Neither was he... His wife just thinks he is.
He was reading these letters away from Danica. That was the only way he figured he would get her to become suspicious about what was going on. In reality, he wasn't about this cheating life. He took a vow, and he took that seriously. But in Danica's eyes and all the proof she was finding, he knew his plan was working.
In one of the letters that were written to him from someone named Athena, he really thought about who he worked with. Nobody was named Athena. And part of this whole scheme, he felt like his wife was trying to get back at him. Back at him, because she believed he was having an affair. At this time, Bryson can't wait to see how she reacts, when he puts all the puzzle pieces together. But in all reality, he needed to see this person. To see if it was her.
He agreed to meet "Athena" from his job. When he showed up at the restaurant. He kind of looked around. And didn't see his wife anywhere. He saw someone that looked similar to her. So, he was just going to play in her little game. He knew there was about to be a lot of deception from the both of them. One thing Bryson didn't know how to do. Communicate.
He walked up to the table and sat down smiling ear to ear. [b "Well hello there! It's finally to be able to put a beautiful name to a beautiful face."] He was flirting on purpose because he could somewhat see that it was his wife. But he just needed her to speak. Then he would truly know.
[center Anger tore through her, but Danica did a good job at keeping it hidden. Years of working as a saleswoman did wonders when working with the public. Once had to learn how to hide how they were really feeling about a situation in order to ensure the other person didn't catch on to how they were feeling. Instead, she forced a tight-lipped smile, the red lipstick a different shade than what she normally wore. What did she say now? Was there anything she [i could] say?]
[center She finally let out a sigh before she ran a hand through her hair. This was going to be exhausting. [b "I've been told many times before that I have a beautiful face,"] she finally said, her eyes meeting his. [b "I actually remember quite well when a certain someone used to tell me that almost every day."] There was a pain in her chest as she spoke. She could vividly remember back in high school, when they had first started dating, how often he would call her beautiful. It was one of the things that had solidified how much she had loved him.]
[center [b "So tell me, Bryson, what possessed you to take things so far?"] Had she not been letting her emotions control her, she probably could've held off on confronting him completely. Unfortunately, that wasn't the case this time. She had to know what he was going to say. How he was going to explain himself.]
Bryson had his fingers intertwined with his own hands as he tilted his head, as he was watching her reaction. Staring at her intently. The more he stared the more he could see it was Danica.
Bryson could tell that she was super upset. But it didn't phase him. She didn't go about and pretend to cheat. But she did pretend to be someone else. So there was a going to be a lot of heat between the two. He wasn't even for sure what was going to happen with their marriage. If they would get a divorce. Or if they could fight through this.
Bryson shook his head and then laughed at Danica. [b "God, how naive are you, Danica?"] Bryson shook his head. He was about to get ready to spill what he did, but he didn't know if he wanted to go that far yet. But then at the same time. He didn't care.
[b "The fact that you sat here, wrote me letters, pretended to be this Athena chick."] Bryson rolled his eyes, throwing out there that he knew it was her this whole time. [b "I didn't cheat on you, Danica. You found those message on purpose. I'm unhappy so I pretended to cheat on you. Not smart. But that other person on the phone...] Bryson kind of stopped as he trailed off. He wasn't even going to finish his sentence. He wanted to see his response. This is what he wanted.
[b "Your right. I used to call you beautiful all the time. When I was happy. Or pretend happy with you. Who knows."] Bryson was very cold and hurtful with his words. Bryson was probably hoping that Danica would fire back or run out of her crying. He didn't care right now. She was mad at him, and he was mad at her. Never a good mix with these two.
[center The laugh was the last thing Danica expected from him. She watched him, eyes widening slightly as he spoke. It was almost a punch to the gut. Was it worse that he had only been pretending? Why not just tell her that he was unhappy? Surely she could've done something to fix that or they could've gone to therapy or... just [i something.] For some time, she just sat in stunned silence. She was no longer keeping her face neutral. No point to it now.]
[center Each word stabbed at her. The knife was already in her back. Now he was just twisting it, making sure it hit all of the right spots to truly hurt her. [b "Pretended to be happy with me?"] How was it that [i that] was the part she was currently focusing on? [i Maybe because that's the part that hurts the most.] She would've rather he had just cheated. It would've been so much easier to deal with.]
[center [b "Why pretend, Bryson? Why not just come out and say something?"] she asked a moment later, her voice soft, almost defeated. She'd been so convinced that he was doing something wrong, had let it eat away at her for the last few months. [b "I only did what I did to confirm it. You were so dismissive when I tried to talk to you before."]]
[center Sitting there, Danica let her mind wander. If he was unhappy, why not ask for a divorce? [b "Why stay if you're that miserable?"] She had so many questions, so many things just tugging at the inside of her brain. Each one brought more pain than the last, leaving her feeling hurt and frustrated.]
Bryson could tell from the look of her eyes that everything was working. He wanted to hurt her, because then maybe just maybe she would ask for a divorce. But he knew that asking for a divorce would upset his parents so much.
Bryson listened to her words and shook his head. [b "I was dismissive because nothing was happening."] That was the part that upset Bryson. No matter what he would say to her, it was like she wasn't hearing what he was saying. No matter how many times he would say nothing was going on. She still assumed that something was going on. [b "This what you get for assuming.."] He muttered, and then looked away slightly, as he saw people watching him.
Then he looked back at Danica with coldness in his eyes. [b "If you were going to pretend to be someone from my job, you could've at least chosen a name with a female that I actually work with."] That was the part that he didn't quite understand what she was thinking.
Bryson sat back in his chair. There was a lot that he was thinking about. Why was he so unhappy with her? Bryson wasn't honestly for sure if he was unhappy or not. He did know that he loved her. But was it enough?
[b "Yeah, when I get told by your family, my family, and all my friends that you deserve better, I pushed myself away from you. And this is what we are at. I just didn't want you to know that your family was saying what they were saying."] It seemed like part of him was trying to be soft with the words. But then something clicked in his head.
His look became very narrow and harsh. [b "But one thing I am wondering. How do your parents know about anything that was going on in our marriage?"] Bryson felt like he was blaming her. And he kind of was blaming her. He knew he was part of the problem. But he didn't feel like he always treated her that bad.
[b "So much for keeping our problems between us."] He rolled his eyes. He didn't want to be here at this moment anymore. He didn't want to talk anymore. Then she brought up the divorce topic. [b "Is that what you want, Danica? Divorce? Fine."] And with that said. He got up and left the restaurant.
[center Danice was quiet for a moment. Maybe she had been secretly hoping for there to be something. Would it have been easier to deal with than this? She really wasn't sure and she didn't know how to handle it. Had he not been so dismissive she wouldn't have done what she did. It was almost like he was trying to place all of the blame on her, which sent a wave of anger over her. She might not have been completely in the right here but neither was he. He was just as guilty when it came to screwing around with her as she was with him.]
[center [b "I absolutely would have, but the lasts thing I needed was for you to go asking around about the letters that weren't actually being sent by one of them,"] she said, narrowing her eyes on him. It felt like he was calling her dumb without really saying the words, something that irked her.]
[center She raised a brow and leaned back in her seat, crossing her arms over her chest. [b "Maybe because I do go to my mother for advice. She's been married for well over twenty years. I didn't think it would hurt to get her opinion on what I should do when it came to making this work."] She didn't think there was anything wrong with that. She had never bad-mouthed him, at least not intentionally. If her parents had taken it that way, that was on them. She constantly tried to be as nice as she could when she would talk to her mother.]
[center Then her heart sank. To be honest, she had been hoping that he would disagree. That they hadn't hit the divorce line just yet. It seemed, however, that he had. She said nothing as he stood. She did even try to go after him. Not right away. It sounded like they both had things they needed to think about. Tears suddenly stung at the corners of her eyes. How had they gotten to this point? She had no idea. She truly didn't.]
[center With a sigh, she pulled some money from her purse to pay for the drink she had ordered, standing without waiting for change or anything, and made her way out. Once she got home, she planned to pack a bag and go stay with her parents for a few days until they knew what it was they were going to do.]
[center If she were honest, Danica didn't want a divorce. It hadn't even been an option to her, but if that was what Bryson wanted... Her chest tightened at the thought. She didn't feel she could change his mind on that.]
Bryson was outside as he watched Danica get into her car and drive off. Most likely was going back home. And right now, Bryson knew that was the last place should he be. His emotions were all over the place. It just really upset Bryson, because even with Danica knowing how his parents were to him, she didn't try and stop it. And even say she was going to talk to them. Bryson rubbed his temples and sighed. What did he ever want anymore?
Bryson knew that he would have to think about all of this. Bryson decided that he was going over to his best friends for the day and see what he thinks. He got into his car, and he saw his best friend and his girl sitting outside waiting for him. Obviously, Bryson was upset about all of this. But he was also angry. Those two emotions never mixed well for him.
Bryson pulled up and got out of his car as his friend gave him a hug. "You good?" Bryson sighed and shrugged. [b "Honestly, I don't really know. We are getting a divorce."] His friend and his girlfriend froze. Obviously, everyone is in shock, because we didn't think that it would lead to this. But it has.
Then his friend girlfriend piped up. "Well, where is she?" The fact that Bryson didn't really know probably looked bad on him. [b "Honestly, she probably went to pack a bag and stay with her parents. It's what she does every time we get into a fight. Then she tells them everything that is going on, and then her mother talks shit about me. That's my biggest problem. But she thought I was cheating on her. So, she started to write me letters pretending to be someone from my job. I found it was her. There is a lot of heat between us two right now. I'm not sure what is going to happen."]
Both of his friends stood there in shock, and they all went inside. Bryson looked at his friend's girlfriend, who was also Danica's friend. [b "But I'm not all innocent either."]
[center The ride home was heavy since Danica kept the radio turned off. She didn't think she could handle the possibility of a break-up song coming on or anything else that might upset her. Maybe she had gone about things the wrong way but was she really out of line for it? Bryson had admitted that he had done what he did on purpose. Even if he hadn't actually been cheating, he still made her believe that he was. He had tortured her with the thought that he was being unfaithful. Surely he was more in the wrong than she was.]
[center Gripping the steering wheel, she sighed, taking a deep breath as she was stopped at a red light. None of this seemed fair to either of them. What had happened between them? Danica had believed that they had been good for one another. It seemed now that she had been mistaken.]
[center Arriving home, she hurried inside, still intending to pack up her things and leave, but as she passed by a table with some pictures of the two of them, she paused, staring at them. Reaching out, she picked up one of them on their wedding day. The smiles seemed so genuine. Where were they now? Tears stung her eyes before she had to set it down, making her way to their bedroom. Instead of pulling out a suitcase from the closet, she sat on the edge of the bed, burying her face in her hands as she took a deep, shaky breath. She really didn't want a divorce. At the end of the day, she still loved her husband, and a part of her believed that maybe they could move past this.]
[center Standing up, she made her way to the bathroom to splash some cold water on her face. Glancing at her reflection, she sighed. She looked like a mess. Her nose was red and eyes puffy from crying, something she absolutely hated. Hesitating, she pulled out her phone, searching for Bryson's number.]
[center [b [i I'm not going to my parents. I'll be home whenever you're ready to talk.]]]
[center She wouldn't apologize just yet. Not until they were face to face and she could figure out a way for them to make this marriage work. Then again, if he really had decided that he didn't want to stay married, she didn't see a way of forcing him to stay. If he was done then he was done. The thought hurt.]
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