tagInterracial LoveZachary & Ciara Ch. 07

Zachary & Ciara Ch. 07

bymspat©

"I should arrive at the hotel around seven tonight," Zach said to Ciara.

"I haven't told Emilee you're arriving today," Ciara replied. Feeling a tingle of excitement in her stomach thinking about Emilee's reaction when Zach walked through the door.

"She might already know," Zach said hinting at Emilee's special ability.

"I don't think so," Ciara said. "If she knew you were coming I don't think she would be able to keep that a secret. She would have told me."

Zach wanted to ask if Emilee had, had any more visions but he and Ciara had agreed not to discuss Emilee's ability in public. Especially after what happened when Emilee used her ability to Colin. They both felt that it wasn't something that everyone needed to know.

"Please turn off all mobile and electronic devices, we're preparing to land," the pilot said over the loud speaker.

"I have to..."

"I know," Ciara told him. "I heard."

"I'll be there soon," Zach said.

"We'll be waiting," Ciara replied.

Zach ended the phone call, turned off his cell phone and laptop then he buckled up his seat belt preparing for the plane to land.

After getting off the plane, Zach hailed a cab and made his way to the hotel. As the cab whizzed down the 285 expressway Zach tried to tamp down the excitement building inside of him at the thought of seeing his pretend family. Especially Ciara.

'This marriage isn't real,' he reminded himself pushing away an image of Ciara throwing herself into his arms as he walked into the penthouse out of his mind. 'That isn't going to happen,' he told himself.

Needing something to take his thoughts off his pretend wife Zachary turned on his laptop and sees that he has an email. He logs on to his email account and sees that the email is from his accountant Kyle Standish. He had forgotten that Kyle was sending him a copy of his monthly expenses report. Zach scanned the report and everything seemed normal until he came to Ciara's monthly expenses.

'This can't be right,' Zach said to himself. He pulled out his phone and dialed his accountant's mobile number.

"Hello."

"Hello, Kyle," Zach said.

"Hello, Zachary," Kyle replied. "Did you receive my email?"

"Yes, I did." Zach told him. "That's why I'm calling. Are the figures you listed for Ciara's and Emilee's expenses correct for the time they were in London?"

"Yes, they are," Kyle assured him. "I checked the figures three times to be sure they were correct. I was tempted to call the merchants to confirm the amounts."

"You didn't did you?" Zach asked.

"No," Kyle assured him. "I didn't feel it was my place to do so without your permission."

"Thanks, Kyle," Zach said.

"Are you going to talk to Ciara about the report?" Kyle asked.

"I don't know," Zach replied. "I'll talk to you later Kyle."

*********************

Zach was still going over the expense report when his cab pulled up to the hotel's front entrance. He was so engrossed in the report he hadn't realized they had arrived at the hotel until the door attendant opened the back passenger door.

"Good evening, Mr. Collins," the attendant said as he opened the door.

"Good evening Davis," Zachary replied after he read the attendant's nametag.

"How was your flight sir?" Davis asked.

"It was perfect," Zachary replied walking towards the lobby. "Would you see to it that my luggage is brought up to the penthouse please?"

"No problem sir," Davis replied.

When Zachary entered the lobby, the first person to greet him with a big pretentious, strained smile on her face was Brie.

"Good evening Mr. Collins," Brie said her teeth clenched together. "It's good to see you again."

"Hello, Ms. Walker," Zach replied barely sending a glance in Brie's direction.

"Listen to us," Brie said her tone relaxing just a little. "We're family and yet we're being so formal. Why don't you call me Brie and I'll call you Zach?"

"I don't think that would be wise Ms. Walker," Zachary told her. "Not when we're in a professional environment. I think addressing each other in the formal stance is the appropriate thing to do. That way there'll be no misunderstandings between us."

"Yes sir, Mr. Collins," Brie said all hint of relaxing gone from her voice.

"Is my wife and daughter in the penthouse?" Zach asked.

"I believe Ciara and your stepdaughter Emilee are up in the penthouse," Brie replied instead of simply saying yes to Zach's question. "Would you like for me to notify my sister and niece of your arrival?"

"No," Zach replied simply walking away from Brie over to the private elevator that would take him straight to the penthouse.

Brie watched her brother-in-law/employer as he stepped into the private elevator a big smile on his face, fighting the jealousy that welled up in her as she wondered once again how her sister had managed to get so lucky.

"Will he be here soon?"

Ciara chuckled watching Emilee as she sat in the living room in her wheelchair anxiously awaiting Zach's arrival.

"I'm sure Zach will be here soon," she replied going over to her daughter, kneeling down beside her chair, giving her a hug. "Just be patient."

"I can't be patient mama," Emilee said so excited about seeing Zach she couldn't sit still in her chair. "I want to see him now."

"I promise he'll be here soon sweetness," Ciara said as Emilee's arms tightened around her neck.

"Aren't you excited about seeing Zach too?" Emilee asked.

"Yes, I am," Ciara replied. "I'll be very happy to see him.

"Do you think he'll bring me a present?" Emilee asked.

"Emilee-e-e," Ciara said her tone warning. "What did we talk about last night?"

"You said I shouldn't expect a present every time Zach comes home from a trip or he comes to visit," Emilee replied her face showing the shame of Ciara's reprimand.

"That's right," Ciara said. "You should be glad Zach arrived safely and he came back to see you."

"I'm very glad for those things," Emilee said, "but the present makes seeing him extra good, like a cherry on top of a great big banana split."

Ciara laughed out loud at Emilee's analogy and the way her eyes lit up as she spoke.

"You're not getting a banana split young lady," Ciara said knowing that her daughter was also hinting that she wanted a banana split.

"Aw-w-w shucks," Emilee said.

At that moment, someone knocked on the penthouse door.

"He's here!" Emilee squealed clapping her hands and bouncing up and down in her chair.

"Calm down," Ciara said making her way over to the door to look through the peephole. "It might not even be Zachary. Besides Zach wouldn't knock on the door."

She tried to suppress the smile that was fighting show on her face when she looked through the peephole and saw Zach standing on the other side.

'This isn't a real marriage,' she scolded herself as she tried to slow down her suddenly fast beating heart. She told herself there would be no falling into his arms nor any rushing to kiss his lips when she opened the door. 'You can't start behaving like some lovesick school girl. You are a grown woman with a child to take care of. You are only pretending to be married to Zach. This relationship is not, meant to last. It is only pretend. So get it together.'

"Open the door mama," Emilee said her voice bringing Ciara out of her thoughts. "Zach's waiting."

"Alright sweetie," Ciara replied realizing she had to get herself together because not opening the door wasn't an option.

She rubbed her sweaty hands against her jeans to dry them then she reached out, grabbed the doorknob and opened the door.

The few seconds it took for the door to open seemed like an eternity to Zach, he was so anxious to see Ciara and Emilee too of course. He hadn't realized how much he missed them until he crossed the threshold of the hotel lobby. As his desire grew to see Ciara and Emilee, the elevator seemed to take forever to reach the top floor. He almost ran off the elevator when the doors finally opened. As he approached the penthouse, his nervousness grew and his palms began to sweat as if he were a teenager going on his first date at the thought of seeing Ciara again.

'Get it together, old boy," he chided to himself. 'You're going to see your pretend wife; the two of you are barely acquaintances. Okay the two of you are more than acquaintances, you're good friends but your relationship is nothing more than that. So, get your emotions under control."

Having duly chastised himself Zachary knocked on the penthouse door.

'I wonder why he knocked?' she asked herself as she opened the door.

When she opened the door, Ciara had a big smile on her face and Zach had the same smile on his face. Emilee watched as the two of them just stared at each other neither of them seeming to know what to say. Deciding to get things moving Emilee called out Zach's name.

"Zachary!" Emilee said her arms outstretched waiting to give Zach a hug.

Hearing his name brought Ciara and Zach out of the staring contest that seemed to be going on between the two of them.

"Emilee!" Zach said walking over to Emilee, kneeling down beside her chair and giving her the hug she sought. "How's my favorite girl?" he asked kissing her on the cheek.

"I'm fine," Emilee replied. "Do you notice anything different about me?"

"Let me see," Zach replied standing up and looking Emilee over. "Oh, my goodness. When were your casts removed?"

"Last month," Emilee replied. "Mama wanted to tell you but I pleaded with her not to tell you so that I could surprise you. Were you surprised?"

"I must say you did surprise me," Zach said, "and I'm happy to see that you'll be walking around soon."

"Me too," Emilee said. "The first thing I want to do when I'm able to walk is go to the park and run around until I'm so tired I can barely stand."

"I don't think the doctor would approve of you doing that," Zach said. "I'm sure he's going to want you to take it easy once you're able to stand on your own again."

"You sound like mama," Emilee said pouting just a little. "She said the same thing when I told her that's what I wanted to do."

"How are you doing with your physical therapy?" Zach asked. "Do you like your therapist?"

"I'm doing fine," Emilee replied, "and I like Janesa."

"Which part of your therapy do you like the best?" Zach asked.

"Swimming," Emilee told him. "I love it when Janesa and I go into the pool. I don't like the stretching that we have to do when we start our sessions," Emilee said a sad look appearing on her face thinking about the pain stretching causes her in her legs.

"I'm sorry you're in pain my little pumpkin," Zach said putting an arm around Emilee and pulling her close. "But the stretching is what you have to do to prepare your muscles for the stress of your physical therapy. If you didn't stretch your legs wouldn't continue to heal."

"I know," Emilee said. "That's what mama and Janesa told me. But it still hurts."

"I'm sure the treat your mother gives you after your sessions makes up for the pain just a little," Zach said.

"How did you know mama gives me a treat?" Emilee asked. "Mama always gives me a treat after I have my therapy and it does help a little."

"I know that your mother hates to see you in pain," Zach said. "And I'm sure she'll do whatever she could to make it easier on you. How often does Janesa come over?"

"Three times a week," Ciara said.

"Did you bring me a present?" Emilee asked eyeing the big box Zach held under his arm.

"Emilee!" Ciara said sending a glare in her daughter's direction.

"That's alright," Zach told Ciara. "She probably already knows what's inside this box."

Zach stared at Emilee as if he was waiting for her to use her physic powers to see what was in the box.

"Can I open it?" Emilee asked when it appeared that Zach wasn't going to give her the box.

"Of course you can," Zach replied a hint of embarrassment showing on his face.

Both adults watched as Emilee tore open the box. Emilee's and Ciara's grew big as she pulled something furry out of the box that seemed to grow bigger as it left the box.

"It's a bear," Emilee said when she finally had the stuffed toy completely out of the box.

The bear seemed to be as tall as Emilee was.

"Thank you, Zach," Emilee said holding the bear tightly against her chest then reaching out to give Zach a hug.

"You're most welcome," Zach said going over and getting his hug.

"Take your new friend into your room, Emilee," Ciara said leaning down and picking up the scraps of wrapping paper stuffing them into the big box. "And it's time for your nap."

"Can I stay up a little longer please?" Emilee pleaded. "Zach just got here and I want to spend more time with him."

"I'll be here when you awaken," Zach said. "We can spend more time together when you awaken. Besides we're going out to dinner this evening and I don't want you falling asleep during our meal because you didn't take your nap."

"You know that would never happen," Emilee said laughing at Zach. "I would never fall asleep during dinner."

"You haven't so far because your mother sees to it that you take a nap in the afternoon," Zach said. "We wouldn't want to ruin your perfect record now would we?"

"Alright," Emilee said turning her chair in the direction of her bedroom. "But, we're going to talk when I wake up."

"We'll talk all you want when you awaken," Zach promised her. "Can she get into bed by herself now?" Zach asked Ciara noticing that she didn't follow Emilee into her room to assist her as she normally did.

"Yes, she can," Ciara replied. "She loves doing things for herself since the casts were removed from her legs. She only calls me when she really needs help."

"I sense that I'm in trouble," Zach said.

"And I believe you know why," Ciara said her voice dripping sarcasm, folding her arms under her breasts.

"I'm sorry," Zach said knowing exactly what he had done wrong. "She's an amazing little girl by herself but knowing the things she can do she's just... just even more amazing. It's hard not to test her abilities when given the opportunity."

"You're right," Ciara replied. "She is an amazing little girl and her ability does make her even more amazing and I understand how tempting it is to test her ability or see it on display when the opportunity arises. However, you are going to have fight the temptation to do so. I haven't told anyone about Emilee's ability because I want her to have as normal of childhood and life as possible. I do not want people using her, turning her into some kind of lab experiment nor do I want them treating as if she's some kind of freak to be put on display for the entertainment of others."

"Point made," Zach said. "And I'm sorry for my actions.

"You're forgiven," Ciara told him.

"Have you decided to hire someone to replace Jonas?" Zach asked changing the topic of their conversation.

"I've decided not to hire anyone new," Ciara said. "Since Emilee's legs are no longer in casts I don't need anyone to help me with her anymore."

"Are you sure?" Zach asked trying to hide the happiness he was experiencing at the thought of not having another man around his family.

"Yes, I'm sure," Ciara told him.

"Where would you like to go out for dinner tonight?" Zach asked.

"Why don't you pick," Ciara replied. "I'm sure Emilee and I will be happy with your selection."

"How about one of the restaurants down in the lobby?"

"That's fine."

"I'll call and make the reservations."

"I have something I would like to discuss with you," Zach said to Ciara joining her out on the balcony after he made their reservations for the evening.

"And what would that be?" Ciara asked staring out at the Atlanta beautiful Atlanta skyline.

"Before I left to come here I had a meeting with my accountant to go over the monthly expenses," Zach said.

"And?" Ciara said turning away from the view of the city skyline.

"The report shows that during the entire time you were in London you only spent three hundred pounds," Zach said moving closer to her.

"I know," Ciara said looking up at him. "I used the credit card you gave me to purchase some personal item for myself and Emilee. I was going to use cash but I wasn't comfortable or familiar enough with British currency so I used the credit card. Did I do something wrong?"

"No. You didn't do anything wrong," Zach assured her. "I'm not questioning your use of the credit card. It's the amount that amazes me, the fact that it's so small."

"Oh." Ciara said finally understanding Zach's question. "You're wondering why I haven't spent more money."

"Yes," Zachary replied.

"Do you remember mine and Emilee's situation when you met us?" Ciara asked.

"Yes," Zachary replied remembering the conversation he overheard between Ciara and Brie.

"I don't want Emilee to ever experience that again," Ciara said. "With the money you pay me monthly and the money I'm going to receive after our contract ends I'll be able to make sure it doesn't happen again."

"I understand that," Zach said. "But, I promised you that I would pay your monthly expenses."

"That doesn't mean I'm going to go crazy spending money, Zach," Ciara told him. "Emilee and I are going to have to go on with our lives after you leave it. I'm trying to keep our lifestyles as close to what it's going to be when we're on our own as possible. I want to limit the change of you not being there as much as I can. In fact I wasn't going to mention this but I was thinking of moving us out of the penthouse into an apartment or a small house."

"What?" Zach replied shocked by what he was hearing.

"I said I was thinking about it," Ciara said raising her hands up in front of her before Zach could respond. "But Emilee loves it here and she understands that we'll only be living here as long as you and I are married or as long as we're both agreeable to it."

"Why would you even think of leaving here? Zach asked as the panic he was feeling ebbed away."

"Haven't you been listening to me?" Ciara almost screamed. "Zach, Emilee and I have been evicted from our home, our things thrown out on the street while we sat on the curb once; I won't allow that to happen again. I'm responsible for her well-being and I won't endanger it again."

"I would never allow anything like that to happen to the two of you again," Zach said. I would see to it that you and Emilee always have a place to stay."

"I know you wouldn't and I believe you," Ciara said looking up at him. "But I can't overlook the fact that your mother doesn't want us in your life. She has already tried to get me to walk away from this marriage by having my past investigated. I don't know what she might try to do next."

"My mother wouldn't have you and Emilee evicted from the hotel," Zach said the sound of his voice letting Ciara know that she had insulted him. "No matter how she feels about our marriage she wouldn't do that to a child."

"Emilee was there, sitting in the living room, in her wheelchair when your mother came over to your place with the report from the investigator in her hot, little hand," Ciara said turning away from Zach her own anger rising, her hands balling into fists as she thought about that day. "But that didn't stop her from telling me that she'd learned that I wasn't Emilee's real mother. She didn't worry one little bit about whether or not Emilee knew about what she was about to say or how what she was about to say would or could hurt my daughter emotionally. Her mission was to get us out of your life anyway she could, as soon as possible."

Zach unable to argue the truth of Ciara's words remained silent shame weighing down his shoulders.

"Is that why you decided to come back here?" he asked Ciara.

"Yes," Ciara replied. "I didn't want to risk being in a foreign country if she decided to do something extreme. I'm not familiar with the laws of London the whole country is foreign to me. I felt vulnerable. I decided that I would be able to defend myself and Emilee better with home field advantage."

Report Story

bymspat© 15 comments/ 13368 views/ 24 favorites

Share the love

Report a Bug

Next
2 Pages:12

Forgot your password?

Please wait

Change picture

Your current user avatar, all sizes:

Default size User Picture  Medium size User Picture  Small size User Picture  Tiny size User Picture

You have a new user avatar waiting for moderation.

Select new user avatar:

   Cancel