Romance: The Damaged Billionaire (6 page)

Chapter 13

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

             

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pulling up into my apartment complex, Paula is already standing outside the door.

The tears are already welling up in my eyes as Paula holds up a bottle of wine and a bag of cookies. I open the door, rush inside and immediately crash on my couch.

I hear Paula digging around in my cabinets and then the cork popping out of the wine bottle. Softly, she comes into the living room, handing me a wine glass.

“So are you going to tell me what’s going on?” she asks as she takes a sip of wine and looks at me with concern.

I take a long sip of wine and look at her. “I had sex with Archer.”

“You did what?”

“We had sex. He had asked me to help him relieve some stress again and I did. Only this time we were in his bedroom and I decided to just go for it and have sex with him. It was amazing and we even slept in the same bed together all night…”

“But?”

“But then today, two blonde bimbos came over and he acted like I didn’t even exist. He ignored me while the girls flashed their million dollar breasts in his face. It made me so mad. How could he just ignore me like that after the night we shared?”

“Did he say anything to you while the other girls were there?”

“Not a word. All he said was that I was his nurse and that they should keep him company because he was lonely, when literally, we did nothing but talk to each other the whole time I was there. I just… I feel so used and worthless.”

“Well I’m telling you right now that you shouldn’t feel that way. It’s his lost, Lara. Some guys are just jerks and Archer is just a privileged rich jerk.”

“I know. I know but I just thought that he was different. We opened up to each other about a lot. He opened up about his parents and how he has an alcohol problem, and I opened up about my Mom and my evil stepfamily and my Dad. I told him things that I’ve never even talked to Jack about. In the short time that I’ve known him, he has made me feel ways that no man has ever made me feel.”

Paula puts her wine glass down and looks at me. “Did you…did you fall in love with him, Lara?” she asks.

I finish off my glass of wine and place it down.

“I wouldn’t say I fell in love with him. I felt something very strong with the person who I think he is and not the person that he pretends to be.”

“I don’t know what to say, Lara. I know I said that as long as you were giving hand jobs you should’ve had sex with him but never did I think that you would actually like him. If anything it should’ve been a short fling. But if he opened you up to the point where you trusted him, then I think that maybe you should give him a chance to explain himself.”

I shake my head.

“No, I know now that he’s no different than any other guy I’ve come across. If he has to put on a front to his so called friends, then we are never going to work out. I don’t do the wishy-washy types. It’s never been my style.”

“I know Lara, but it just seems as if there is something there. I mean I know that you say you don’t want to give him a chance but I’ve never seen you this hung up over a guy. You barely shed a tear when Jack left, so that’s why I know that he is worth something to you.”

“Maybe. Maybe he is. He’s worth me leaving alone. I’m telling you Paula, I felt so disrespected. He just seemed so cozy with those two… he probably used them to relieve his stress now that I’m not there. You know what they say about blondes’ right. They’re more fun.”

Paula sighs. “No matter what I’m here for you.”

I look at her.

“Thank you. I really thought that we could’ve had something but he just doesn’t want to leave his shallow tendencies alone. I can’t babysit a man and whenever I decide to date again, I will make sure that he knows exactly what he wants.”

“You know you’re rambling, right?” she says with a smirk.

“I know but rambling is what I feel like doing right now,” I say.

She hands me a bag of cookies. “Well ramble away, bestie, and if you want to go and throw eggs on his house, I’m down for it.”

“He has cameras. He’ll know it was us.”

“All the more fun.”

I smile at her and shake my head.

Paula is exactly what I needed right now. 

A shoulder to lean on and someone to pick me up when I am down.

I wouldn’t trade her for anyone in the world.

We spend the rest of the night eating cookies and drinking wine.

Soon Archer is the farthest thing from my mind and I begin to feel a lot better.

Tomorrow is going to be a new day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 14

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I return to work earlier than expected and the other nurses all stare at me as if I have grown an extra head.

I continue on about my business though. I know that they were dying to know what happened but I don’t feel like filling in the gossip crew.

Dr. Williams even throws me a few looks but he doesn’t say anything to me and I don’t say anything to him.

I pretty much stay of clear of him and all of the other nurses.

He probably thinks that I’ve ruined the chances of the hospital keeping the donation that Archer gave but I don’t think coming back to work sooner than expected will cause him to pull the donation.

He is a jerk but he isn’t cruel.

I walk back to the nurses’ station after tending to a patient when I see everyone’s attention turn towards the doors of the ER.

“He’s back,” one of the nurses whispers to me.

“Who?” I ask.

But she doesn’t respond.

Instead she smiles as she walks off to attend to a man being wheeled in off an ambulance.

I watch in surprise as an unconscious Archer is wheeled past me to a hospital room.

“What happened?” I grab one of the ambulance women.

“He was drunk again,” she replies.

“Did he hurt himself?”

“He fell down a flight of stairs at his penthouse and one of the maids called us. When we got there, he was unconscious but we weren’t sure if it was from the fall or the amount of alcohol he consumed. His blood alcohol reading was through the roof.”

Damn.

He must have been lonely again.

 

 

****

 

 

It has now been two days since Archer was returned to our hospital.

I have avoided his room time and time again. One of the doctors asked me to help him out yesterday but I flatly refused. I couldn’t tolerate walking in there. Even being the same hospital as Archer is bad enough.

I think everyone is saying it was my fault that he had another fall.

Yes, I left him with his ‘friends’.

But it wasn’t my fault that he is a drunk.

After doing my daily rounds, I notice everyone stop talking and look down the corridor.

I turn my head to see what everyone is looking at and I see Archer coming towards us on crutches when he really shouldn’t be moving around at all yet.

He was risking another back injury and was supposed to be lying back in a hospital bed.

Archer slowly wobbles towards me and stops.

“What do you want?” I ask him.

“I need to talk to you,” he says.

“I don’t think that we have anything to talk about.”

“I think that we have plenty to talk about.”

“What you think, and what I know, are clearly two different things.”

I hear someone clear their throat near me and I turn around to see Dr. Williams standing there with a frown on his face.

“I think you two should talk in one of the nurses’ lounges. You will have plenty of privacy in there.”

“Thank you,” says Archer.

I roll my eyes and lead him to the nurses’ lounge.

I can feel a lot of eyes on us but I try to ignore them because this situation was already awkward enough without having to deal with every nurse in the hospital in my business. I hold open the door to the nurses’ lounge for Archer and then close it and lock it behind him.

“So why are you here?” I ask him.

“The question is, why are you here? I hired you to work for me for two weeks,” he says as he takes a seat awkwardly in one of the chairs.

“I would figure you could see that I quit when I took my stuff out and didn’t come back to your penthouse. Why didn’t your
friends
come and save you from falling down the stairs?”

“Because they weren’t there. I asked them to leave not long after you walked out on me. And… and then I was lonely again.”

“So you started drinking again?”

His eyes fall to the fall, “I know and understand why you left my penthouse.”

“Do you really?” I ask him with a raised brow.

He sighs. “Yes. I realize that I was a jerk when Jessica and Brittany came over, but when I’m around my friends, I’m so used to acting a certain type of way that I think nothing of it.”

“That’s no excuse for the way you acted.”

“I’m sorry.”

I look at him and don’t say anything.

“Being with you, I was able to be myself. I’ve never felt so open and comfortable than when I was talking to you about my issues. That was real. I wasn’t faking it. I was genuinely opening up to you like I’ve never done with anyone before.”

“Okay… but you threw it all away. I don’t know if I can get over that situation, Archer. I opened up to you to in ways that I’ve never opened up with anybody and then you just shunned me. I felt so torn. I felt so used that I couldn’t even stand to be around you. I can barely look at you now.”

“I’m standing here as a man telling you that I was wrong. Please forgive me. I’m sorry,” he pleads, “I will do whatever it takes to get into your good graces again. Please let me prove to you that I’m a changed man. I will do whatever it takes.”

I stare at him and I can see that he seems genuine but I really don’t know if I want to walk that road with him again.

He really did hurt me.

“Look, Archer, I just don’t know.”

“Please.”

“I don’t know…”

“I’ve never once cared about what a woman said before I met you. From the moment that I opened my eyes in the hospital room, I knew that I wanted nothing more than to be around you all the time. Let me take you out on a date and prove to you that I can be the man for you.”

“If I do this and it’s pretty big if… you have to give up your drinking and go to AA meetings. Addiction is a serious problem and you will need all the help that you need to kick the problem. I will not date a drunk.”

His eyes fall to the floor again, “I will stop drinking. I will do anything that you ask. Now will you please go out on a date with me?”

“You can’t take me anywhere. I’ve read your file - you’re not even allowed to leave the hospital for the next two weeks.”

“Then please be patient. Let me take you out the day I leave this place.”

“Where would you take me?”

“To one of my favorite places.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 15

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 weeks later…

 

 

Archer and I walk into a fun park and it’s completely empty.

We had to wait until his back healed to go on our first official date with one another and now that he can move around, he’s taking me to his favorite spot – the fun park.

It has mini golf, rides, fairy floss, and laser tag.

The smile on his face when he walked into the fun park is as big as I’ve ever seen anyone smile.

The memories of his happy childhood moments coming flooding back and he is giddy like a schoolboy.

He hasn’t had a drink in two weeks and is starting his AA classes soon.

As we walk around, I see there is a table in the center of the mini golf area with roses and wine sitting on top of it.

I turn and smile at him. “You did all of this for me?”

He nods his head. “Yes, I wanted to make you feel special. The whole park is ours for the night.”

“You already make me feel special every day that we’re together,” I say as I kiss him on the cheek.

“I wanted to show you how special you are to me. This has been my favorite place to come since I was a kid, and I wanted to share it with you.”

“Thank you. This is completely different to where I was thinking our first date would be.”

“You were expecting a fancy restaurant with a fancy meal?” he says with a smirk.

I punch him playfully in the arm. “I actually don’t know what I was expecting. I just knew that whatever you did it would be special.”

“You’re right about that. Have a seat at the table.”

We walk over to the table in the mini golf area.

He pulls out my chair for me and I take a seat as he sits across from me.

Our dinner is served the second we sit down, and it is delicious.

We eat, we chat and we laugh. Hopefully this will add more good memories of the fun park for Archer.

Once we have finished dinner and dessert, Archer stares at me.

“Lara, I love you more than life itself. You pulled me from a dark place in my life. I never thought that I would find anyone who understood me or would want me for anything more than just my money. You have brought laughter into my life along with a whole lot of pleasure. Right now, you are my entire world and there is nothing I want to do than to spend the rest of my life with you and to continue to make you the happiest woman in the world. I would move the stars and the moon if it would put a smile a face.”

“Thank you,” I smile and stare at his beautiful eyes, “Now come on, you brought me to a fun park so let’s have some fun. I’m dying to kick your butt in a game of mini golf.”

“You can try but I must warn you - it’s my sport.”

“Put your money where your mouth is, Phillips.”

He laughs as we head off to enjoy the fun in the park.

I have indeed found my rainbow after the storm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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