Best friends were supposed to have your back, not stab you in it. or so the saying went.
I was finding it difficult to breathe. Hurt anger the conflicting emotions were crushing my inability to think coherently.
Adam and MJ’s affair had blindsided me. Truth was I hadn’t seen signs and the collateral damage to my marriage and children were devastating.
“Mother!” My daughter’s shrill voice interrupted my reverie. “I can’t believe he would bring that whore to my engagement party!”
I blinked and shifted my gaze to my daughter Astrid. Her fiancé Ash attempted to calm her.
“Don’t ssh me!” Astrid shrugged off his hands and glared at me. “Do something mother! That slut will ruin everything!”
I sighed, “don’t use that language, Astrid” I sipped my champagne. I stood and smiled at her and Ash “Just enjoy yourselves.”
I took another sip of my champagne for fortitude and made my way towards Adam.
I could hear the whispering, the pointed curious stares from guests. My stomach pitched dangerously.
I clenched my fingers into fists. I was not going to allow my humiliation ruin my daughter’s night.
MJ clung to my ex husband as if she were a climbing ivy. Her expression was of cool indifference. As if laying waste to her best friend’s marriage wasn’t much of an undertaking. A bloody coup d’état that was in-her favor.
Our eyes met.
she coiled her body into Adam’s. A seductive pose I had seen her use on plenty unsuspecting men.
I watched with somewhat satisfaction as Adam coolly detached her from himself and continued his conversation with Astrid’s soon to be in-laws.
MJ’s perfect features scrunched up into scowl and she tilted her head back to whisper in his ear.
His gaze searched the room for me and he smiled. “Becky” he stepped away from MJ towards me. “My god you look lovely”
I tried not to let his praise do things to my insides. I allowed him to kiss my cheek. “Thank you, Adam” I smooth my hand over his lapel “you look wonderful”
He did. The dark strands of hair was peppered with grey, was longer and touched his collar. He was getting more sun now that he wasn’t in the office as much.
“I was just telling Ash’s parents that they should come to our Hampton home this summer” Adam smiled “what do you say, Lewis? Maggie?”
Maggie tried to smile as she glanced at me then MJ.
I chuckled “don’t put them on the spot like that, Adam” I gestured Maggie to sit at a nearby table. “Of course you’re welcome to come to the Hampton House. It’s lovely in August.”
Adam hurried to seat Maggie, smiling at me as he guided me to a chair. Once we were all seated, MJ included, Adam took a chair next to me.
Adam placed his hand on my back as he conversed with the in-laws. He smiled at me “I have to give Becky credit. She raised our children. Put my head straight whenever I needed it. Now my daughter is getting married? How can I be so lucky?”
“Oh Adam!” MJ cooed “what wonderful kind words to say about your ex wife!”
“I just love how Adam is so thoughtful and loving” MJ went on “why, just last night he made me a romantic dinner and he proposed!”
Silence fell over the table.
Maggie and Lewis were horrified as MJ held up her hand to show off her ring.
I could barely breathe as my skin grew hot from the overwhelming bombardment of emotions.
Was that the ring I threw back at him?!
Suddenly the silence was broken by a cacophony of noise.
“Dad! Tell me that it isn’t true!” Astrid exclaimed.
Adam lurched from the table. “Astrid, it’s not” he tried to assure her. He turned to me. “Becky I swear I wouldn’t have asked her to marry me!”
I knew without question Adam wasn’t lying. He never lied in our marriage, He never even lied about his affair. The sudden panic despair in his eyes confused me.
“Tell me you wouldn’t stoop so low as to steal my wedding ring!” I growled. My gaze shifting to MJ.
“You mean my ring!”
“You know I never noticed it before,” Adam spoke quietly “you always had to have whatever Becky had. You copied her style, her mannerisms.”
MJ was incredulous, “Me? copy her?! Are you kidding?! I don’t take style tips from a frumpy house wife who has no friends!”
“Stop it! You’re ruining everything!” Astrid cried.
MJ shoved Astrid aside. I caught my daughter and tried to console her.
“Becky your marriage was nothing if I stole your man, I fucked him in your bed, I did things you wouldn’t do! I stole your ring. He is mine” MJ hissed.
There was something in MJ’s eyes. Something that made me snap. Did she really believe I was beneath her?
“Don’t you ever look at me like that or I will kill you.” I screamed “Don’t you ever!” My hand connected with MJ’s face. Her head snapped to the side from the blow. She staggered backwards and fell.,