Chapter no 17

The Teacher


GOD, he is such a good kisser. He makes me melt. I used to think Nate was a good kisser, but I was wrong. This man is far better.

“Eve,” he murmurs. “I wasn’t sure you were coming.” “And miss out on this? Never.”

A smile lingers on Jay’s lips as his eyes fill with desire. I haven’t seen my husband look at me that way in a long time, and I have to admit, it’s a rush. Enough of a rush to keep me coming back here every single week for the last three months. And I don’t even feel guilty about it.

Well, a tiny bit guilty. But I wouldn’t do it if my own husband didn’t act like he was scared of touching me.

Jay glances behind him at the open street where anyone could see us kissing. He holds out a hand to help me to my feet. I kick off my one remaining pump and follow him to the storeroom.

We make love among the piles of shoes. It’s a small space, but somehow that makes it even hotter. Although on one occasion, I did roll onto the heel of a stiletto, and it nearly broke my skin. Jay was apologetic about that. He always tries to be gentle, but after a week apart, we are practically ripping each other’s clothing off.

It lasts about as long as sex in the storeroom of a shoe store could possibly last. Weirdly enough, when it’s over, I don’t want those shoes quite as much anymore. The two of us lie on the cold, hard floor for a minute, catching our breath. Jay is gasping for air like he just ran a marathon, and when he rolls his head over to look at me, his skin is glowing and shiny with sweat.

“This is the best part of my week.” He grabs me to kiss me again. “It was all I could think about the whole day. I wasn’t sure you would come.”

I sit up on the floor and grab my bra, which is hanging off a shoebox on the second shelf. I don’t want to tell him that it’s the best part of my week too. Not just that, but if we didn’t have these sessions together, I would throw myself off the top of the school building.

It started about four months ago. It was innocent enough at first. I was at Simon’s to buy a pair of shoes. Somehow, I keep thinking the right pair

of shoes will fix everything. Like if I walked into our house in the perfect pair of pumps, suddenly Nate would find me attractive again.

I had it down to two pairs of shoes: a pair of strappy Stuart Weitzman sandals and a pair of Cole Haan black leather pumps. I could only afford to buy one of them, and I kept looking between the two pairs, trying to make up my mind. I sat there for over an hour, unable to decide which of the two shoes might make Nate love me again. Finally, the salesman approached me.

There was something familiar about him, although I couldn’t quite place it at first. Of course, he was the sort of man any woman would notice. As handsome as Nate, but in a different way. Broad and strong, whereas Nate is thinner and lankier. He stood over me and said in a heartbreakingly gentle voice, We’re closing in a few minutes. Can I ring you up?

It was all too much for me. I burst into tears.

Jay closed the store, and we talked for the next two hours. I didn’t tell him everything, but I told him enough. He told me he didn’t understand how it was possible that my husband didn’t find me attractive. I assumed he was just being nice—until he kissed me.

There is something ironic about the fact that I have fallen head over heels for a shoe salesman.

Jay’s phone starts ringing, and he reaches to retrieve it from the pocket of his khaki slacks, now crumpled on the storeroom floor. He sucks in a breath when he sees the name on the screen. He glances at me before taking the call. Even though the phone is close to his ear, I can hear the female voice on the other line, but I can’t make out what she’s saying.

“I’m sorry,” Jay mumbles into the phone. “I got stuck at work again doing inventory.”

He doesn’t want me to hear him lying to another woman, but it’s unavoidable. I turn my head at least to give him some semblance of privacy. “I’ll be home in about half an hour.” He rubs at his messy hair. “The traffic should be light so… yeah, don’t worry about dinner. I’ll just grab

some pizza next door.”

If Jay and I are both getting pizza, I’ll have to go into the restaurant after he does. He’s paranoid like that. He doesn’t want his lies to be found out. And the truth is, neither do I.

“Yeah,” he says into the phone. “I will. Yeah…sure. I’ll do it when I get home.” He hesitates, glancing over at me. “Love you too.” When he hangs

up, his neck is bright red. “Shit, I’m sorry about that, Eve.”

“Don’t be,” I said, even though that call is a bitter reminder of yet another reason why we can never be together.

Some of the post-sex euphoria dissipates in the wake of that phone call. It’s funny that in all the months Jay and I have been sneaking around, I’ve never once been interrupted by a call or even a text message from Nate. He seems glad to have me out of the house.

Jay chews on the lower corner of his lip. “Next week?” “Absolutely.” It’s the best part of my week—I would never miss it.

As the two of us get dressed among the boxes of shoes in every single size, I can’t help but think about how much this means to me. It’s not just the best part of my week—it’s everything to me. There isn’t a day that goes by when I don’t wish Jay and I could run off together.

But in my heart, I know this will all end horribly.

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