She gulps the hot, bitter coffee. Her head is about to explode. How did things come to this…?
Her partner for 15 years, the father of her triplets. They have been through so much together, shared countless joys and sorrows, and now this… she finds herself at crossroads. Should she continue on the path she has walked on all these years or change directions? Would the other roads be better or worse?
A web of thoughts clouds her brain, and she takes another sip of her coffee, which is now lukewarm.
Her life has turned upside down… tears flow down as the events of previous night flash in front of her eyes.
They were partying at their best friends’ house. It had been a fun evening – free flow of drinks, mozzarella sticks, pickled vegetables, cold cuts, crostinis and what not.
It was close to midnight when the party had died down. With hugs and pecks to all and sundry, they stepped out of the villa. She held him as he staggered and they ambled hand-in-hand to their minivan, which was parked in an alley off the road. He’d had one too many drinks, since she was the designated driver for the evening.
He smiled and kissed her on her cheek. His breath reeked of gin and vodka. He stopped in his steps outside the minivan and cupped her face in his palms. He pressed his lips on hers, with a force unknown to her. She whispered, stop!
He tugged at her top, kissing her on her exposed shoulders. She murmured ‘please stop.’ His icy hands were soon under the chiffon, cupping her breasts. His nails scratched her supple skin. She whined, ‘you are hurting me.’
She remembers telling him to stop; she is not sure anymore, for he had proceeded brazenly.
She gasped as he pushed her against the van, crushing her with his uncomfortable weight. His pants coiled over his shoes repulsed her. She froze as he fumbled with her skirt button, trying to yank it down.
Now that she is thinking about it, she is confused. Was she not loud and clear in conveying her reluctance, or was he too drunk to hear?
She felt she was drowning as he forced himself on her. Her survival instinct kicked in and she pushed him with a force that sent him flying on the tar road. She adjusted her clothes, opened the car door and sat on the driver’s seat, trembling.
The passenger door opened, and he stumbled on the seat. They drove home in silence. And slept, just like every other night, like every other married couple.
She sips her coffee, which is now icy cold, wondering what would happen when he wakes up.
Would he remember? Would he apologize?
Should she confront him? Should she pretend like nothing happened?
Should she walk out?
She looks at the framed picture on the mantle. Her kids – the center of her universe.
She finds herself at crossroads, yet again.
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