is the most hungover scene in my book, Dancing in a hurricane. Marissa is
Sixto woke on the couch and opened one eye. The light over the stove was on, otherwise the house was dark. He cleared his throat and the sound echoed in his throbbing head. Sitting up slowly, he caught a whiff of his armpit. Potent.
A bottle of water sat on the table in front of him next to his laptop, but the beer and tequila bottles were gone. He glanced at the dining room and kitchen. Marisa. She cleaned up for him. He smelled the citrus disinfectant she used to rectify his mess.
He opened his laptop and fired it up. In one pull, he drank all the water. It was 9 P.M. and he counted how long he was without Bree. Eighty-four hours. The first seventy-five without sleep. Marisa thought he was drunk this morning, but it was exhaustion that knocked him out in the middle of her crying jag.
He stood, stumbled a little and went to the kitchen, dropped his bottle into recycling. Hungry. He opened the fridge and found food. Marisa shopped for him, too. Making a sandwich, he remembered her face, the blank terror when she realized what her actions caused. Was it really her fault? What wasn't he recalling from his sister's lecture?
Walking back to the couch, he flipped on the light and sat, loading up his e-mails. In the middle of a bite of sandwich, he felt gut-punched as his sister's words roared back into his head.
I told her that I couldn't go to you because you'd try to be my savior. And it would end badly.
He set his sandwich on the plate. Damn. Bree thought she was saving him, protecting him from Victor. Is it excusable to do something morally wrong if you believe it's the only solution? Hell, he'd done the same to Bree. He withheld information on the club because of his responsibilities toward his family.
The bottom line was a choice—life without Bree, alone with his strict ethical code and pride intact. Or forgiveness, understanding, and the woman he loved by his side.
Elbows on knees, he dropped his head in his palms and heaved a breath. The stench of three days away from a toothbrush curled his lip. Worse, in his mind, the unpleasant smell of the temper he unleashed on Bree stunk worse than hell. God, he'd made a mistake.
That whole damn day had been a rollercoaster and he went off the rails, reacted instead of thinking. When he saw her packing to leave, his fear of losing her frightened him nearly beyond reason.
Then her betrayal. Murky pictures replayed themselves. Her tearful eyes begging to explain. Had he really told her to go home? And set her bag outside the door? "Damn."
What was he supposed to do now?
*** *** ***Have a great day!