Alexandra left the front door unlocked and sat on the floor, staring into the blazing fire waiting for Billy. Last night she barely slept as thoughts of what to say to Billy irked her. A white legal pad sat on her lap. Earlier, she had separated the page into two columns: positive and negative. The list of positive’s outweighed the negative side, with the first thing on the negative side, liar. Beneath liar, listed the usual things that annoy most women; not putting down the toilet bowl seat, eating and leaving his mess on the table, having to be told a half a dozen times to throw out the garbage and falling asleep immediately following making love.
Pulling her knees into her chest, she bit her tongue, holding back her tears. No way would she shred a tear in front of Billy. She wouldn’t give him the satisfaction of knowing she was upset. But Dee was right. She needed to give him a chance to explain before she went over the deep end. Not showing an ounce of vulnerability would be Alexandra’s main objective. This had nothing to do with her feelings for him. It had to do with honesty and trust.
With a spoon, she played with the mini marshmallows floating on top of her hot chocolate. This was all surreal, a nightmare coming alive. She didn’t plan on meeting someone, and especially falling in love. Letting the walls down she had perfectly built was another thing that wasn’t in her game plan. Finally, when she felt good about herself and her life, bang, an enormous complication.
Knock, knock. “Hey Alexandra, I’m here. You left your door open.”
Alexandra didn’t budge. “I’m sitting by the fire.”
Billy leaned over and kissed her forehead. “I tried calling you all morning to see what you wanted me to bring you for breakfast. You’re phone is dead.”
“No it isn’t. I turned it off,” she said in haste.
Billy sat next to her and took her hand. “Something’s not right. I feel it.”
After a long beat Alexandra spoke. “Billy, I’ve been so blind sighted by you and me. I went along with the adventure, never looking at the broader picture.”
“What in God’s name are you talking about?”
“You. Everything you have done since we were kids.”
“Let me grab a cup of coffee and I’ll tell you anything you want to know,” he stood.
“Why don’t you start by telling me why I can’t find you on Classmates or any of the other social media sites for high school? Does Billy Davidson even exist?”
Billy sat back down and his eyes shoot wide open. “Oh course I exist. Did it ever occur to you I chose not to sign up to any of them?”
“Why wouldn’t you?”
“Because I hated the people I went to school with twenty–five years ago. Why would I want to talk to them all these years later?”
He had her there giving her a perfectly good explanation. The only reason why she joined the websites was to try and track him down. She made a mental note to delete her accounts from those sites. She felt exactly the way he felt.
“Does that work for you?” he asked in an irate voice.
“Don’t you trust me?”
“I want to but there are so many unanswered questions. We aren’t the same people we were when we were kids.”
“Don’t take this the wrong way. I am not the jealous type and what you did in the past, is in the past, but what I have a hard time dealing with is why I can’t find a single thing about you on the internet. And why is it that you don’t work on Saturday nights, the biggest eat out date night?”
“That’s because I’m with you.”
“Yes. But you told me you were some big time chef. Wouldn’t you be working in some five star restaurant, which lead me to wonder why all of the five star restaurants list their chefs and you aren’t listed at all?”
“You’re asking a lot of questions.”
Alexandra kept her eyes on Billy. He didn’t squirm or show an ounce of nervousness like one would show if they were lying. If anything, he sat relaxed and willing to answer her questions.
“Yes I am.”
“And I have answers to all your questions.”
Reaching her hand out, she said, “Okay, proceed.”
“The reason why I’m not working on Saturday nights is because I’m working in the early morning through afternoon creating the day’s deserts. I finally found my niche. I’d rather bake then cook a gourmet meal.”
“Then why aren’t you listed on any websites? I couldn’t find a single bio on you at all.”
“And that’s because I’m not listed under Billy Davidson.”
“Are you kidding me? My real name is Stefano William Davidson. My parents called me Billy because they didn’t want to kids to make fun of me at school.”
Alexandra dropped her eyes down to her lap.
“And the reason why you couldn’t find me under Davidson is because I used my mom’s maiden name, Innocenzio. I am known throughout the industry as Stefano Innocenzio.”
Alexandra bit her bottom lip. Could it be? She could always excuse herself and check it out on her cell phone. Stop. Why would he lie after being confronted?
“I still have unanswered questions. Why didn’t you tell me?” Alexandra’s voice raised a notch as she slowly pronounced each word.
“I didn’t think it mattered.” Billy pointed to the dining room table. “Go ahead, get your laptop and look me up now. I’m sure you’ll be quite impressed with my resume.
“I think I will.”
Alexandra stood and retrieved the laptop. If he were right, then she went out of her mind for nothing. Last night she drove herself crazy questioning Billy’s character and driving herself crazy in the process.
Opening it up, she tapped on the spacebar until the Google search came up. She typed in Stefano Innocenzio and within seconds restaurants showed up and well as other websites with were affiliated with his name. Randomly she selected a page which brought up a magazine article with a picture of Billy wearing his chef’s hat holding a pastry bag in his hand. She closed the top and laid the laptop on the cocktail table.
“Sorry I doubted you. I guess I just have too much free time on my hands. I should have just asked you.”
“I’m guilty too. I should have told you. Our relationship is based on honesty. I didn’t even give it a second thought to tell you I went under an alias.”
No words came from Alexandra. She was too humiliated. Good thing she listened to Dee and didn’t attack Billy the moment he stepped through her front door. If she had, she would have ruined everything Billy and she built.
Billy slid his arm around her shoulder and kissed the top of her head.
“I love you, Alexandra. Please believe me when I say I would never do anything to hurt you. I see our business adventure as that, a business adventure. Are you still aboard?”
Alexandra thought for a moment. What did she have to lose? She’d take a chance and see where it led her. If they could start up a business together and keep their relationship in tact, then it would all be worth it.
“Before I answer, do you have any other secrets that you’ve kept from me?”
“My secret is that I’m madly in love with you and I’m ready to get started.”
“You know something, so am I.”
Billy lifted her chin. “Sealed with a kiss.” Their lips met, and their adventure was about to begin.
Please stop by Tuesday Tales and read this weeks tales with the prompt "Kiss" from a group of talented authors. Click Here.