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Chapter no 37

The Housemaid

Despite how incredibly uncomfortable my cot is compared with the incredible mattress in the guestroom, I pass out soon after Andrew and I make love up there, wrapped tightly in his arms. I never thought I would be having sex in this room. Especially since Nina was so strict about letting me have any guests over.

That rule certainly didn’t work out too well for her.

I wake up again at around three in the morning. The first sensation I become aware of is my bladder—full and slightly uncomfortable. I’ve got to hit the bathroom. Usually, I go right before bed, but Andrew wore me out and I fell asleep before I could muster up the energy.

And that’s the other sensation I become aware of. A sense of emptiness. Andrew isn’t in the cot anymore.

I suspect after I fell asleep, he decided to relocate to his own bed. I can’t blame him. This cot is hardly comfortable for one person, much less two, and the room is so claustrophobic. Maybe he tried to tough it out, but after tossing and turning, he migrated downstairs. Andrew is more than ten years older than me, and my back can barely make it through the night with this mattress, so I can hardly blame him.

I’m so glad this is the last night I’ll be sleeping here. Maybe after I use the bathroom, I’ll go join Andrew

downstairs.

I rise to my feet, the floorboards groaning under my weight. I make my way to the door and turn the doorknob. As usual, it sticks. So I turn it more firmly.

It still doesn’t turn.

Panic mounts in my chest. I press myself against the door, the scratch marks in the wood splintering into my shoulder, and place my right hand squarely on the knob. I try once again to turn it clockwise. But it doesn’t budge. Not even a millimeter. And that’s when I realize what’s going on.

The door isn’t stuck. It’s locked.

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