tagRomanceUnexpected Guest Ch. 10

Unexpected Guest Ch. 10

byAda Stuart©

Jared watched as Ann did her best to ignore him after their dinner conversation. She was being so causal about the whole thing that it was clear that she hadn't any deeper feelings for him. He felt as if the walls of the cabin were closing in on him, smothering him. He needed some fresh air, he thought and he jumped up so quickly that his chair scraped along the floor.

He didn't bother to see if Ann noticed as he quickly exited the cabin. He needed to clear his mind and do some hard thinking, he thought as he walked briskly to his car and started to rearrange the equipment he had there.

Where had the warm woman that he had fucked a few hours ago disappeared to? Now he only saw the bitch that he had met when he first came here almost a week ago. Suddenly the warm person that he had come to enjoy and perhaps even love had vanished completely.

Maybe it would have been better if he had just gone along with her plan and ignored the questions about the future. Maybe then they would have been able to go their separate ways with a smile on their face and never meet again. But he couldn't do that.

He had to know where he stood and it was better this way - better to know where he stood instead of spending the next few days hoping and wishing for something that would never happen. He wanted to just pack and leave right away. He could probably pack his equipment in half an hour and be on his way.

No, he wouldn't give her the satisfaction to learn that she could chase him away with a few hard words. If so, he would give her the impressions that he cared - cared too much about her and their relationship. And she would be right. He cared far more than he wanted to admit. He had come to enjoy the easy bantering as they lay naked in the bed - believing that he had finally met someone that he could talk to about all and everything, while still being as sexy as hell and making him feel hard just thinking about her.

Oh well, hard was good. He could always say his erection was caused by him being turned on by her body. To admit that he loved her, or cared deeply for her, now that was something completely different. For all the years he had known her, he had always had a soft spot for Cade's younger sister. Maybe because she reminded him so much of his own sister.

But as the time went by, Ann had gradually become more than just a friendly face. Instead she had turned into a woman that he watched and longed to know better. Cade would murder him if he had known, and so he had kept his interest to himself while he dated lots of other women and tried his best to forget her. And he had almost succeeded – until Cade arranged this holiday.

What he had discovered since then was that the woman of his dreams was even better in real life – or at least he had thought so until now. She held his interest even in his sleep and he enjoyed being in her company. And now the whole thing was going to end. He longed to hold her in his arms again and to hear her say that she would always stay with him.

Instead, it seemed that the spoilt sister of Cade was just that: spoilt and used to getting new toys all the time. He had really thought that she was different than that. He had seen her struggle to keep up with him on their hiking trip and she even seemed to enjoy the experience once she got the hang of it.

Could he have been so wrong about her? Was she really doing all that just to get him to bed? Before kicking him out when she had tried him out? If so, then she was not the person that he had believed her to be.

Something irked at the back of his mind but he couldn't quite point at what was wrong with the picture. His gut feeling told him that she was just a better actor than he had thought her to be. But what part was she pretending? To be the brave little warrior that enjoyed being with him, or the little tease that played with his mind? Which one was the real her?

There was really only one way to figure it out: he had to confront her one more time and this time he would get the answers that he sought. After that he would at least be certain that he had done what he could.

***


The opportunity presented itself later that same evening as they were drinking coffee outside the cabin. Jared had packed most of his belongings in his car. He would head home early next morning, he vowed as he looked at Ann sitting quietly. She seemed lost in her own thoughts. They had barely spoken since dinnertime. Not until she had offered him a cup of coffee and he had accepted it.

In just a few hours the atmosphere had changed completely and he felt as if they were complete strangers to each other. Where had the warm woman from this morning gone? She seemed to have disappeared into thin air and erected thick walls between them. He wondered what he had said wrong to make such a mess of it all. He decided to fling himself into the fire, and assured himself that he had little to lose.

"Why do you think Cade placed us here at the same time?" he asked as casually as he could.

"Most likely he forgot that he'd lent the cabin out twice," Ann finally answered as she seemed to have rehearsed the answer before giving it to him.

"You really think so?"

"Or he thought we would get along just fine since we use the facilities so differently."

"Do we?"

"Yes, with all that hunting and fishing of yours you're barely here."

"You don't think he had any hidden agendas?"

"Like what?"

"Like making an item of us."

Ann laughed heartily, or so it seemed to Jared as spikes seemed to penetrate his body one at a time as her laughter drifted through the air.

"I doubt that Cade will ever be accused of being a matchmaker. It simply doesn't suit him."

Jared just murmured something unintelligible as he let the conversation rest.

***


As the darkness fell, the room seemed more chilled than it had done in the previous days. Ann occupied herself with reading a book and Jared seemed totally focused on repairing a fishing rod. Still, Ann felt him cast several glances her way, but whenever she tried to meet his eyes, he was again focused on his task.

It felt so strange that they had been lovers not so many hours ago, and now they seemed like strangers sharing a cabin. She had to give it another try before she let him escape. But how could she reveal his thoughts without revealing her own feelings in the process?

At last now that they were barely talking, she had to admit that she missed him already. Missed the easy bantering and the fellowship that came from experiencing things together - walking up the same mountain and sharing a fish fried on the camp fire. How would it feel like when he was actually gone from her presence if it felt so bad now?

"So, you're leaving tomorrow?" she heard her voice croak.

"Yes, it seems to be the best," Jared answered without even lifting his eyes from his work.

"Are you sure I can't persuade you to postpone until Sunday?" Ann suggested boldly. That got his attention and the smouldering eyes of Jared suddenly met hers straight on.

"And how would you accomplish that?" His voice sounded like a mixture of sexual teasing and dare.

"I thought that I might make you some dinner, perhaps?"

"Is that all?" He sounded a little disappointed suddenly as his voice had turned flat.

"Well, you did say that you liked home made cooking, so why not?"

"And, in return, what would you require me to do?" Jared suddenly sounded angry.

"Why, nothing."

"Nothing?"

"Well, if you insist you might clean the cabin and pack my things but I wouldn't expect you to," Ann said teasingly.

Jared just stared at her as if she was speaking nonsense, and indeed she was, she realised. She was nervous as to how to approach him with her wishes that the words just tumbled out of her mouth.

"So milady requires a servant?" Jared asked in a voice that was freezing with spite. "Are you sure that there isn't any other task that I would be required to do as well?"

"No, what would that be?"

"Acting as your boytoy, perhaps? Or is slave a better word for it? Maybe you thought I would just be satisfied with a pat on my head for all the services rendered? Or should I just be grateful that the famous Ann Mason would lower herself to fuck me?"

"It wasn't like that," Ann almost spat put.

"Wasn't it? Then how come you don't want anyone to know how you've spent the last week? Have you done this so often that you prefer to meet your boytoys in far-out places?"

"How dare you! You know nothing about my life, so just sod off."

"Don't worry, Princess. I'm leaving tomorrow and that's the last you'll have to see of me."

"Good," Ann announced as she turned her back on the most difficult man she had ever had the misfortune of meeting. It was a mystery how she could have liked him so well just a few days ago. "Oh, and Jared. Just let me know if you require payment for he rendered services you were talking about." His face turned darker.

"I don't need your money," he said icily.

"It's up to you."

Ann congratulated herself that at least she had got one final hit.

***


The next morning Jared was up early and packed all his things in his car. Ann was awakened by all the noise. She hadn't gotten much sleep during the night. Instead she had laid twisting and turning, thinking about their argument earlier in the day. Perhaps it was just Jared's way of saying that he didn't want to keep in touch after today. If so, she would not trouble him with her presence. Reluctantly she got dressed and went in search of some coffee to lighten her day.

Suddenly, he stood before her. Ann was feeling a little put out. He was ready to leave her already. The idea troubled her more than it should.

"You're leaving?" she asked after a while of simply staring at each other, no one knowing what to say.

"Yes, I have all my things packed up," Jared responded quietly. He looked as if he hadn't got much sleep either.

"How about some breakfast before you drive? It's a long journey."

"I've already eaten some and I'll grab a coffee at the nearest petrol station."

The silence settled between them again. Ann felt as if she was taking an oral exam again, just wanting for the situation to pass and still dreading it at the same time. Then suddenly she knew what she needed to say to him. She might never see him again, it suddenly occurred to her.

"Thanks for teaching me how to fish," she smiled at him. "And camping outdoors. It was fun."

"Yes, it was," Jared smiled in return. "Except when you made me jump into the river."

"Naw. I don't recall asking you to take a bath with all your clothes on."

"Everything to save a rookie from drowning herself," Jared teased lightly.

"Yes, thanks for that as well," Ann said lightly as she struggled to come up with more to say to him.

"I should probably get on my way," Jared finally announced after a long pause in their conversation.

"Yes, you probably should," Ann reluctantly admitted. At the same time she felt Jared coming closer and giving her a warm hug that ended much too quickly as far as she was concerned.

"Good luck with your apartment," he stated as he turned his back on her and walked to the door. "Have a safe journey home."

"You too," Ann responded automatically.

Ann followed him to the door and stood looking from the doorway as he got inside his car and started the engine. He waved at her before he drove away from the cabin. The most exiting week of Ann's life had finally come to an end.

She stood watching until Jared's car finally vanished from her view. Taking a deep breath, she finally turned toward the cabin to pack up her own things and head back home.

***


A few weeks later


"What are you doing here?" Cade asked Jared as he walked into Jared's office late one evening.

"Working. What does it look like I'm doing?" Jared barely lifted his eyes from the drawing he was studying.

"I've been looking all over for you, man, and you're not answering your mobile."

At that Jared suddenly looked up, before looking at the mobile beside him.

"Sorry, out of batteries," he mumbled.

"That's the worst excuse I've ever heard. Get it recharged then." Cade slammed his large body into the office chair right opposite Jared.

"Was that all?" Jared looked at his friend. "Don't you have a wife to attend to? Or something else to do on a Saturday?"

"Are you kidding? Of course I have somewhere else I would much rather be and in bed with my wife would be at the top of that list. The problem is that I'm worried about you."

"No need to. You just go home and give your beautiful wife a big kiss from me."

"Don't worry, I will. I just wanted to know what happened between you and Ann."

"Nothing that concerns you."

"Oh, come on. I know you hit it on, so why are you both acting so prickly about it? I thought you two got along so well that you would be stuck in a bed together for the next month. And here you both are prickly as ever and each hiding your head in the sand."

"What did she say to you?"

"Nothing. Absolutely nothing. And that's the worst of it all. There is something fundamentally wrong when Ann's not speaking to me. And you're not helping either. So, what happened to get you two so distraught?"

"I don't want to talk about it," Jared said grimly before returning to his work, trying to ignore his best friend.

"You don't love her then?"

"Of course I love her," Jared replied heatedly before he managed to arrest himself. He hadn't planned to be so blunt about it.

"Good. Then everything is alright, isn't it? You can get together."

"No, we can't."

"Why not? You want her and she wants you. Sounds like an easy conclusion if you ask me."

"I can't see her," Jared reluctantly admitted.

"Why not?" Cade repeated himself.

"She doesn't want me the right way."

"What way? Is there more than one? She wants you in her bed and that's a good place to start if you ask me," Cade laughed at his own joke.

Jared didn't take the bait. There didn't seem to be anything else to do but to tell Cade the sorry truth, he thought.

"That's exactly the problem. She wants me as her plaything, her toy, nothing more," he said harshly.

"Oh boy." Cade looked spellbound. "You sure about that, buddy?"

"Very sure. She told me herself."

"Naw, you shouldn't trust a woman to tell the truth about something like that. I'm sure she has more feelings for you. Remember she had a crush on you when she was a teenager."

Jared laughed. "That's the most pathetic reason I've ever heard."

"Have you tried telling her what you feel about her?"

"Doesn't seem much sense now, does it?"

"Never underestimate the impact a crawling man can have on a woman. They have a real soft spot for a man in love, believe me."

"Don't tell me that's the reason why Erin married you in the end?"

"Not the entire reason, no. But it helped a lot."

"Ha, I've heard that you chained her to you until she accepted your proposal."

"Well, yes, that might have something to do with it," Cade chuckled as he gave his friend a wink.

"You're not suggesting I try that scenario on your sister, are you?" Jared asked suspiciously.

"I wouldn't hurt, would it?"

"Except that she might send me to jail, crying kidnapping and all sorts of different crimes."

"That's were the lovesick swine comes in. She will excuse anything coming from a man so desperately in love with her."

Jared just shook his head at Cade.

"Forget it, it's no use. Now, maybe you should go home to your wife and enjoy your evening. I have work to do."

"Now? But it's 9 in the evening?" Cade protested.

"So? After having you pestering me I won't get any sleep so I might just as well get some work done."

"You're a workaholic, man."

"So they keep telling me. Now, you know where the door is, don't you?" Jared asked suggestively.

"I know, I know. But you're making a major mistake."

"I don't think so. For once I'm beginning to do the right thing."

"I'll still call it a mistake," Cade smiled at him. "Let me know if you change your mind and need someone to plead your cause to Ann," Cade offered as he walked out and closed the door behind him.

Mistake, indeed, Jared thought. He had already done the biggest mistake of his life: falling for a woman that could never be his. And worse yet: learning to know her body would forever remind him of what he would be missing. It would have been better if he had never slept with her in the first place. Sometimes it was best not to know what you were missing.

He sighed deeply and turned to his desk. A few hours of work and then he would hopefully be tired enough to get some sleep. Every night it was the same struggle - wanting and longing for a soft body laying beside him, inviting him inside her sweet warmth and losing himself in her tight sheath. No, he had to stop thinking about her. Damn Cade for reminding him and giving him hope where he knew there was none.

***


Men!, Ann thought with a nasty taste in her mouth. They were the most senseless beings she had ever had the misfortune of meeting. Well, at lest some of them were better than others, but that only meant that some of them were far worse than she could ever have imagined and Jared was clearly one of the worst.

Here they had spent a few wonderful days together and then suddenly he had turned all sour and acting as if she had stolen his virginity or something. As far as she knew, he must have lost his virginity years ago, at least if some of the rumours she had heard was anything to go by. The way she had heard, he was more of a ladies man- which set the week they had spent in a very strange light.

Some of the happenings made sense, but not the way Jared had acted at the end. Maybe she had inadvertently stepped on some toes that he didn't want to be stepped on. Men! Who could understand them?

And then there was this brother of hers that seemed like a perfectly likeable and efficient sort of man's man. And still he was trying to act as a matchmaker for his sister. He must have become soft after marrying Erin, Ann thought as she climbed a step higher on the ladder.

It moved slightly sideways and she held on tightly as she waited for it to settle down. She needed a new ladder soon, and she made a mental note to buy one at the next hardware store she visited. Maybe she should have accepted Cade's offer to help paint the kitchen walls after all. Then he could do the upper half and she could stay safely on the floor.

But, accepting help from Cade only meant that she would have to do the job twice. If only he hadn't been so sloppy. He was much better at tearing down walls than making sure the paint ended up on the walls and not the ceilings. That only meant that she had better do it herself, even if it took a lot of time. She had already been painting for three hours and still there were two more rooms to finish. She located the smallest brush and climbed a step higher to reach the top of the wall to finish the last details.

At the same time she felt the ladder shake and she reached for something to hold onto. But the ladder seemed to turn in the opposite direction of where she was heading and she felt herself being launched into weightlessness as she felt backwards, her hands holding on to the brush and can of paint with a tight grip.

Suddenly, her fall was partly stopped by her foot and she felt a sharp pain as her backside landed on the carpet. She looked around in shock to see herself partly covered in green paint and her foot leaning on a ladder rung about half a meter from the ground. A sharp pain started in her ankle.

At the same time a sharp sickness went through her body and she felt herself sweating at the same time. Her entire body was shaking and she suddenly wondered how she would be able to stand up again. She rested her head on the floor and simply concentrated on taking deep breaths while waiting for her head to clear up.

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byAda Stuart© 14 comments/ 36073 views/ 10 favorites

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