I Just Can't Say Goodbye

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Pride and Success

Mr. Phyllis Wayne writhed in anger. He was already spoonfeeding Dr. Grace her chance of success but she was just too stupid to spat it out. It was all laid down in her fingers, alive and real,  but too careless to let it slip away.

He could not blame Jia,  the clever woman. After all, this was the first fight she surprisingly won,  and hadn't she say she'd fight until the end? This only meant she was prepared for another and more ferocious battles against them!  

He wanted to call  and curse this Ybañes crazy girl  so badly but he knew this was his own fight and his challenge. Dr. Grace need not cooperate, much more collaborate, she should only be the sole benefactor. It was rare to have parents like hers. Or,  perhaps, it was he who was indifferent. And worst, to his own son.

If he had to be like the Ybañez couple,  who dotingly complied to the wishes of their daughter,  he would have to accept Jia as she was. He would have to disregard the contempt of his upperhand society. He would have to open his eyes and squarely accept that his son's love to a less unfortunate woman would have nothing to do about the image he was so protective about.

What could be filthier than those dirty engagements of the rich who paid women for their momentary pleasures? And doing this would not necessarily tarnish their reputation. Jia was a decent woman after all who gave her all to care for his son. She was clearly not a woman like Dr. Grace who was so capable of doing wicked ways to have anything she wanted. The certain piece of dignity that she was holding on was the crowning glory of a righteous person.

He realized he had many men under him who trembled under his command,  but he did not own anybody who would stand and fight for him without thinking of those alluring reward.

Time and time again,  he was haunted with guilt. A really strange thing he did not knew it existed. He was always tough and would certainly not feel any guilt to any of his misdeeds.

___
Jim pulled off to his front garage. He paused for a while and stared at the door. He felt that even that  piece of wood emanated loneliness at his family's absence. Jian no longer burst through the door to welcome him. No more lovely smile to erase his tiresome shift. No more kiss to warm his heart.

He pondered deeply. How could he ever survive in letting her go when at this very moment he was dying in loneliness? Yes,  time would heal and forget but every moment that ticked by without them was already unbearable. This was such a foolishness! What sweeter reward could he gain from being obssesed in the success of his profession if he had to lose the ones who gave  meaning to his life?

While leaning  back on the couch with eyes closed, holding his desire to call her,  the doorbell buzzed. He lazily walked over to open the door.It was Auntie Elsa.

"Dr. Wayne.." Auntie Elsa was about to say something.

"Jim,  auntie." She did not have to address him corteously. She easily became a family to them.

She smiled. "Here is your breakfast. Jia had instructed me what to prepare today."

The more his loneliness deepened that all he wanted at that very moment was to fly immediately to the Philippines.

"Thank you,  auntie. Can you eat with me, instead? "

The kind,  old woman hesitated. "I'm done but I can sit for a while and tell you about something."

His browse knitted together but was quick to ease it off.

"Come inside,  auntie." He ushered her to the coffee table and had her seated comfortably.

When Jim was about to pick his spoon and fork,   he paused. He remembered that Jia never allowed him to eat outside often. She always complained that commercial dishes was too full of harmful seasonings.

"Auntie, I'll let you know if I'm coming for a meal so that you will not, unnecesarily,  tire out yourself in preparing." He said, wondering what else Jia had instructed her.

"By the way,  Jim,  your wife had also instructed me to give this to you." She smiled as she handed him out a white envelope.

His heart jumped right after she said 'wife'. Jia need not conceal their real status before her. In so short a time,  she had become like a  real mother to them. He was still surprised with this another proof that   Jia was really sincere in her decision to marry him.

Jim stared at the envelope. Jia had scribbled something that made his heart race. "Give this to your dad. "
He did not mind being ethical right then and at a blink of an eye,  he tore the envelope open. It was a check from his dad. Printed in the middle part was a big amount that could provide Jia a good life throughout her lifetime. A sticky note was pasted into it. A sudden surge of heat reached to his ears and temple. 
"Mr. Wayne,  this is too big an amount for a gift. A simple toy that he likes  would already make my son die in excitement!  If this is for me, so that I can use this to start a life away with your son, I don't need
this. After all,  I have told you what I am intending to do."

Jim was seething in anger. What more evil deeds would he do in the soon future?  He knew that this was just one of the first steps of his plan.

"Auntie,  after this, I'll go out for a while. I'll be back soon. " Jim said as he poured himself a glass of cold water.

But he did not finish his meal. He stood up and dashed out of the door. Auntie Elsa stared at his back,  bewildered. What was in the envelope that made him angry?

She shook her head and started cleaning out the coffee table. She, then,  opened up the ref and pulled out some meat and vegetables. She cut it all and placed it into different boxes.Obviously,  preparing ahead for next meals.

___
Jim did not wait for someone to open the door for him as he knocked. It was his father's office and he knew he would be here before his flight in the afternoon for another business trip. His dad was so surprised to see him walking towards him.



Marilyn Lucero

Edited: 28.08.2019

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