Perfect Together by Kristen Ashley
“You…have a place?”
“Apartment, yeah,” he grunted.
“You’ve rented an apartment.”
It was a statement, and the pain in it was not veiled.
Hearing it was why my husband of nineteen years looked from placing some of his folded T-shirts into one of his Tumi cases, to me.
His next wasn’t a grunt, it was gentle and sweet, and butchering when he repeated, “Yeah.”
“So, we’re done,” I said tonelessly.
He straightened from his packing, “Wyn—”
“Like so much else in our lives, you have decided we’re done.”
His beautiful, full lips thinned.
But he didn’t answer.
The suitcase on our bed that he was packing, the leather bag he used for weekenders already crammed full, zipped shut and sitting on the floor, his workout bag the same, the Tumi carry-on the same, his empty part of the closet and currently emptying drawers…
These were his answer.
“There’s no talking about this? Working this out?” I asked.
“We’ve talked ad nauseam. We’ve—”
I leaned his way and grated out, “Nineteen fucking years, Remy. You’re just throwing that away?”
I could see immediately he was getting angry (I mean, it was actually twenty-one fucking years, including dating, engagement, so of course I would).
“I’m not throwing dick away, Wyn.”
I glanced pointedly at each bag that told a different tale.
“You never took a goddamn thing I said seriously,” he noted.
Okay, now I was getting angry.
“Are you insane?” I demanded.
“Were you in California last weekend?” he asked.
I felt my hair sway as my back went ramrod straight.
“I asked you not to go, you went,” he bit out.
“You told me not to go, and it was work, I couldn’t not go. So yes, I went.”
“You can do whatever the fuck you want, Wyn, you own the goddamned company. That includes saying no and sending someone else.”
“And how, precisely, do I say no to Fiona Remington?”
“You open your mouth and form the letters n and o.”
I stood there, staring at the man I’d shared a bed with for decades, the father of my three children, and I felt cold creep over my skin.
“I’m on the cover of the top magazine in my business, for fuck’s sake,” he stated. “On it for winning that award this weekend, and my daughter was my date because my wife was kissing ass in Hollywood.”
That cold grew icy.
“You don’t want to do this, Remy,” I warned. “There’s no coming back from this.”
“Of course I don’t want to do this, Wyn,” he spat. “But you’ve given me no choice.”
Oh no, he did not.
I swung an arm out to the Tumi. “So this is on me?”
“The city of fucking Phoenix gave me an award, Wyn, and you were not here.”
“The highest-paid, most critically acclaimed actor in Hollywood asked me to style her for awards season, Remy, and she had this one window to sit down for a consultation before she’s off to Algiers to begin a punishing three-month shoot, and she won’t step foot on American soil until two days before the award shows begin. So I needed to be there.”
“Yeah,” he said, the finality in that syllable like a crush of stones landing on my head. “You did.”
After he spoke those words, he walked back to the dresser and emptied the drawer.
As he shoved the tees in with the others, I whispered, “There’s no coming back from this, Remy.”
He didn’t look at me as he flipped the suitcase shut, zipped it, and then tugged it from the bed.
Only when he had both bags over his shoulders, the suitcases tipped to their wheels—strong and fit, my rugby-playing husband, he didn’t seem weighed down at all with a representation of our entire life hanging off his shoulders—did his eyes find mine so he could give me an answer.
And that answer was not his words.
That answer was my tall, strong, handsome husband walking out our bedroom door.
Three years later…
“Typical alphahole bullshit. Typical Remy, yanking your chain like this.”
I was in my car.
My friend Bea’s voice was sounding from the speakers.
And my heart just stopped beating.
This situation was obviously acute, so I made the first right turn I could, into a Walgreens parking lot.
And I tried to get my heart beating again.
Though, this was hard since my mind was working triple-time.
“I mean, what in the fuck? You just cannot shake this jackoff loose,” Bea kept ranting.
I stared at my windshield, deep breathing.
“I mean,” she carried on, as I was just then realizing she was wont to do, “he walked out on you and three kids. He couldn’t let that be his Dick of the Century finale?”
“Sabre called this family meeting, Bea. Remy didn’t,” I told her something I’d already told her.
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