The Flip Side of Love


Their love story had all the makings of an old-style romance novel. Star crossed lovers who caught each other’s eye across a crowded room and both knew in that instant that they were destined to be together. Fiona was the beautiful heroine trapped in marriage that she no longer desired to be in. And Devon was the handsome successful business tycoon, who after taking just one look at her knew that his life would never be the same. But this story wouldn’t have the same kind of happy ending that stories that start in such a way usually do.I would devote my life to making sure that it didn’t, because Fiona the beautiful heroine was my wife. The crowed room my company Christmas party and Devon the handsome business tycoon is my boss.

Up until the moment when I caught the glance that passed between them I had foolishly believed that Fiona and I were living out our own fairy tale romance; Fiona my beautiful bride had all the looks of a fairy tale princess. In fact she was the most beautiful woman that I had ever seen, demure and dainty behind her cascade of golden curls, eyes that always seemed to be smiling. I had known the moment that I had looked into her sparkling sapphire eyes, that I would never have eyes for another. We had been married less than a year after that first look.

I was used to men looking at my wife, after all she was a gorgeous woman, what I wasn’t used to was Fiona looking back.

“I only have eyes for you silly,” she would tease me when I would complain that maybe some of her admirer’s looks had lasted just a little too long. But this time I didn’t say anything on our silent car ride home. This time there was no teasing between us the words stuck in my throat, turning to bitter bile. All through the long, long night that kept me tossing and turning, images of the two of them together, plotting and planning their secret rendezvous behind my back. I could picture them kissing I could hear her deep, sexy laugh as Devon moved his lips down her long white throat.  I imagine her soft shapely body that fit so perfectly in my arms, moving into his embrace and I knew that the flip side of love is not hate, but deep searing pain.

I never ask her where she goes, or whom she sees no matter how late she returns to our bed. I act as if that I don’t smell the lingering of his expensive after shave in her hair, when I hold her in my arms at night. I mask the pain of my knowledge behind smiles and teasing, impromptu picnics and bouquets of wildflowers, Bergamot and Black eyed Susan’s Daisies, Bachelor Buttons, Myrtle and Lady Slippers that are the color of her eyes.

And when I tell her that Devon my boss has taken an unexpected business trip, and that nobody seems to know where he has gone or when he will be returning, I watch her eyes for clouds when I mention his name. And when I see them and feel her stiffen at the mention of his name, I once again pretend that I don’t notice.





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