“Who’s the man? And when are you going to bring him out for me to meet him?”
Bailey hardly ever dated, so Christina was exceedingly curious about the remarkable man who managed to bag her.
After all, the Cook family previously went all out to arrange for Bailey to attend blind dates with many wealthy and handsome heirs to end her singlehood.
Alas, she did not take a fancy to any of them.
At Christina’s questions, a glimmer of shame flashed across Bailey’s eyes. Biting on the straw, she admitted in a murmur, “We’re not officially together yet.”
Christina was stunned for a moment, but she composed herself in the next second.
Well, she’s a grown adult, so it’s understandable that she has some physiological needs at times.
The two of them did not continue pursuing that subject. Instead, they talked about the television series Bailey dubbed recently.
As they conversed, time flew like an arrow. Out of the blue, the caretaker, who stood a near distance away, walked over and said to
Christina respectfully, “Mrs. Hadley, Mr. Hadley just phoned and asked whether you’d be going back to Scenic Garden Manor for lunch, or you’d like him to come over and eat with you.”
Before Christina could respond to that, such immense shock hit
Bailey at the side that her jaw dropped. “Are you kidding me? It’s only been a while since I’ve last met you, yet Mr. Hadley’s desire for control has gone up another notch, and he’s controlling where you have lunch?”
Bursting into giggles, Christina explained, “I’m pregnant, so he’s somewhat anxious.”
“Pregnant?” Bailey’s eyes went wide.
She then glanced at Christina’s flat belly before ascertaining, “I’m going to be a godmother again?”
Christina dipped her head in affirmation. “At that time, don’t forget to prepare a gift.”
At that thought of an adorable baby calling her “Aunt Bailey,” Bailey was over the moon. “Never! That’s for sure! I’ll prepare a houseful of gifts!”
Bailey linked arms with Christina before they both got to their feet to leave.
At that exact moment, a long and slender hand grasped the door handle of the coffee shop and pushed open the door.
Amidst a gust of cold wind, a man strode in with a tall and beautiful woman on his arm.
In the narrow aisle, the four of them bumped right into each other. Julian’s unfathomable gaze alighted on Christina, and he greeted placidly, “Christina.”
Having met him twice, Christina replied with a smile, “Mr. Forrester.”
In turn, Julian inclined his head a fraction. Then, he led the woman beside him further into the coffee shop.
His gaze was so impassive that it was as though he did not notice the presence of another person beside Christina.
Christina did not pay that detail much mind, but when her fingers came into contact with Bailey’s hand, her heart lurched.
“Why is your hand so cold, Bailey?” As soon as she lifted her eyes, she saw that Bailey was rather pale, making a stark contrast with the person who was all smiles earlier.
At once, panic swamped her. “What’s wrong with you, Bailey? Are you feeling unwell?”
Christina’s worried voice snapped Bailey out of her thoughts. A faint trace of pain glinted in her eyes. “It’s nothing. I’m just a bit tired, so I feel like sleeping.”
She’s tired and feels like sleeping?
“In that case, I’ll send you home,” Christina offered.
Shaking her head, Bailey declined, “No, it’s okay. Hurry up and go home. Mr. Hadley is waiting for you.”
However, Christina was utterly worried when Bailey was in such a state and insisted on sending the latter home. Unfortunately, Bailey was likewise adamant about going home by herself.
Failing to convince her otherwise, Christina had no choice but to watch helplessly as Bailey drove away.
Upon returning to her condominium, Bailey kicked off her high heels wearily. She dragged her feet to the couch barefoot before throwing herself down on it.
As she hugged the soft cushion, her tense nerves gradually relaxed at long last.
Her memories replayed themselves in her mind on a loop, showing her the picture of Julian pushing open the door and stepping into the coffee shop earlier time and again.
The black windbreaker he wore matched perfectly with his regal and aloof countenance, rendering him like the sunlight during winter, distant and blinding. But above ti all, the sight that blindsided me the most was the smiling woman on his arm who looked elegant and gracious.
When that thought hit her, tears escaped her eyes uncontrollably. Indeed, the man whom she was not officially dating yet was none other than Julian.
Precisely because it was him that she did not dare tell Christina his identity.
While she had her head buried in the crook of her arm as she sobbed softly, an untimely knock sounded at the door.
Snapping her head up, she demanded in a hoarse voice, “Who’s there?”
No one answered outside the door, but the knocking persisted. Irritated by the constant noise, Bailey wiped the tears off her face with her sleeve. She stood up and marched over to open the door.
The instant the door swung open, the person outside pulled her into his arms before she even had a good look at his countenance.
On the heels of that, a faint scent of tobacco wafted into her nostrils.
The man kissed her so passionately that she was left powerless to resist. The world spun around, and she was carried from the doorway to the couch.
“Let go of me, Julian!” Bailey snarled while struggling away, finally having a chance to catch her breath.
Julian, on the other hand, turned a deaf ear to her. Restraining her hands against his chest, he lifted them high and pinned them above her head.
Such a posture mortified Bailey to the core. She twisted her waist and kicked her legs.
But in the next heartbeat, the man pinned her down forcefully.
With that, Bailey lost the ability to put up a fight altogether. Her eyes turned red-rimmed, and she appeared downright aggrieved.
Holding her gaze, Julian asked in a guttural voice as he panted heavily, “You’re mad?”
Bailey jerked her head to the side. “Aren’t you supposed to be with your fiancée?”
She wanted to remind him that their relationship was then over.
However, when her question reached Julian’s ears, he interpreted it as her being jealous. “I’ve never done it with her.”
His nicotine-laced breath hit her, scrambling her mind for a moment.
She knew all too well that it was wrong for her to be intimate with Julian, but his remark earlier quelled the jealousy within her substantially.
Sensing the gradual relaxation of her body, Julian took things a step further.
Under his aggressive advancements, Bailey melted into a puddle shortly after.
By the time Christina returned to Scenic Garden Manor, a feast was already laid out on the table.
Scenting the aroma of food the moment she stepped into the house, she grew ravenous.
Ever since she got pregnant, she was often hungry. For that reason, she plopped right down and started eating without a second thought.
Only when she had finished eating did she realize that Nathaniel had been missing.
Gah! He called me to come home, yet he’s nowhere to be seen!
“Where’s Nathaniel?” Christina asked, turning to Raymond at the side.
“Mr. Hadley had just gone out a while ago,” Raymond answered.
“Oh, okay.” Knowing that Nathaniel must have left to deal with some work matter, Christina did not give it much thought.
She started feeling sleepy after the meal. When she woke up after taking a nap, it was already five o’clock in the afternoon.
By the time she went downstairs, Lucas and Camila were already home from kindergarten.
The twins presently had someone ferrying them around. Although they were still very much clingy, they no longer requested that
Christina carry them since she was pregnant.
Christina had dinner with them and accompanied them as they did their homework before putting them to bed.
It was only then that Nathaniel came home. The windbreaker he wore carried the chilly air of the night.
“What had you so busy today?” Christina could not resist questioning in curiosity since the usually clingy man did not even give her a call that day.
“I went to meet with a supplier,” Nathaniel replied briefly while taking off his windbreaker.
Sure enough, it was a work matter. As such, Christina did not probe further.
Anyhow, Nathaniel did not plan on divulging much. After exchanging a few words with her, he went into the study.