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 Season 6

Episode 56

(Holding a birthday party for Charlie)

"Are you okay?" Charles asked in a mellowed voice. He noticed the sudden change in her behavior.     

Sheryl could hardly conceal her feelings. She was standing right in front of Charles; her hands in his hands; her heart beating against her chest; her face red and feeling hot as if she had fever. 

She always felt like a naive and vulnerable girl in her first love when she was with Charles. She never experienced this kind of a feeling with Anthony.    

 "I'm fine,"  Sheryl replied struggling to hide her feelings, as she hurriedly pulled her hands back. She turned her face away from Charles and reprimanded herself, 'How can I be so shameless? I already have a boyfriend and my own child. Why can I flush and my heart beat faster for another man?'    

'Enough is enough. I have to keep a distance from him,' she thought to herself.   

Sheryl's hands were as cold as Autumn used to be, which convinced Charles even more. By this time, he was sure that the girl standing in front of him was none other than his own wife. He felt so incredibly peaceful to see her safe and sound.     

It was already 10:00 pm, but Charles had no intention of leaving. With Sheryl by his side, he felt time elapsed faster than usual. He had not felt so secured and peaceful in the last three years.     

Due to that small accident, Sheryl was in no mood to try out any other entertainment project. With a lot of hesitation, she suggested, "It's getting quite late. How about we... get back?"   

 Charles looked at Sheryl's face that reminded him of a scared rabbit at the moment. He felt he had been unreasonably rude to her which might be the reason behind her being so scared.     "Okay, then I'll drop you to your hotel,"  he replied promptly.   

"Oh, no, thanks!" Sheryl refused his offer and quickly tried to look away. Her feelings were just beyond her control. 

What was worse, she was not even being able to stop them from showing on her face. The only way was to get away from Charles as soon as possible. "It's not much of a drive from here to my hotel. I can grab a taxi. You... you and Charlie go home. It's getting late and it's not good for Charlie to be awake too late in the night,"  she said.     

Speaking these words, she just turned around and ran.     

She ran with all her might as if she was being pursued by a ghost. As soon as she rushed out of the amusement park, she got into a taxi. In the meantime, Charles and Charlie left the park right after her. They followed Sheryl's cab secretly and stopped out of the hotel to see that she checked in safely. Charles waited at a distance to see Sheryl walk into the hotel before he turned the engine on and drove off.     

Charlie observed the two of them all this while. Then he turned to his father and asked, "Dad, if you were so worried about her safety, why didn't you just drop her to the hotel instead of following her secretly?"  

The innocent heart could not really make out why adults lied even when they loved each other so much. Kids these days have become so observant and sensitive that absolutely nothing escapes their eyes.    

 "It's complicated, son. Even I explain it to you, you won't understand,"  Charles replied. He looked at his son with a smile on his face and then turned his face towards the road as he drove ahead.    

 'It's difficult to explain to others about what happened between me and Sheryl,' he thought bitterly.    

 "How did you know?" Charlie retorted. He frowned. "Don't treat me like a child, Dad. Now that you like her, you should let her know,"  he said in a solemn voice.    

 Charles marked the seriousness in Charlie's face and could not help feeling awkward.   

'Why do the kids know so much? Fortunately he is a boy. I don't need to worry much about him in terms of emotions,' he thought to himself.    

 Charles parked his car in front of Leila's apartment building, intending to watch his son head upstairs from his car. 

However, Leila was already waiting outside. When she caught sight of Charles's car, she strode forward and pulled the door for Charlie. "Where did your dad take you today?" she asked cheekily.     

"That's none of your business,"  Charlie replied in a cold voice. He didn't want Leila to know about Sheryl.    

 With a quick look at Leila, Charles said coldly, "Well, I've got to go."   

 "Wait. I need to discuss something with you,"  Leila said trying to stop Charles from leaving. These days Charles and Charlie got along very well. The growing bond between the father and son was indeed good news for her. However, Charles being indifferent to her was testing her patience. Charles was still so cold towards her even after knowing that she was the mother of his son.   

Leila felt that her plan was working just as she wanted it to. She planned to spend more time with Charles after he sent Charlie back. And just because of that she came down and waited for them well in advance. But to her dismal, the man even didn't enter her house these days.     

He looked rather irritated for being stopped by Leila. 'I've already made myself clear to her that I have nothing to talk to her. Now what?' he thought.   

  But it was evident that Leila felt otherwise.     

She looked at Charles and requested, "It won't take you long. Just a few minutes. It's about Charlie."    

Leila was very well aware of Charles' unwillingness to stay or even talk to her. But she was clever enough to use Charlie as an excuse and her plan worked. Charles nodded. He agreed to speak to her.   

Even Charlie had a frown on his face at the mention of Leila wanting to talk to Charles. He kept a fixed gaze on his father, trying to signal him to avoid her. 

Charles looked at his son while still seated in the car and said, "Go upstairs, Charlie. Your mom and I need to talk."   

 Charlie nodded his head and walked towards the stairs without turning back even for once. He was aware his father would never change his mind no matter what Leila did.    

 As he climbed up the stairs he gave a crooked smile and pitied Leila who wasted time and energy on someone she would never get.     

Watching Charlie head upstairs, Charles got out of his car. He lit a cigar and took a puff. "Just say. What is it?" he asked. He did not even look at Leila as he spoke.   

  Leila maintained a calm look at his face that was turned away from her and spoke in a meek voice, "Two things." She remembered how much caring and doting Charles used to be when he was with Autumn. And now that Autumn was nowhere in the picture and Leila had established herself as the mother of his child, still he was so distant and cold towards her! 'Why couldn't he love me?' she wondered with a wry smile.   

'It doesn't matter. Autumn is dead. Sooner or later Charles will accept my love,' she comforted herself.    

 "Charlie needs to go to school. He doesn't like his former school, so I allowed him stay at home. I was wondering if you can find a better school for Charlie. I... I tried to provide the best I could within my means,"  she continued in a meek and hesitant voice. She wanted to put Charlie in the best school, but she had her constraints.     

She felt that being a father, Charles should take the responsibility of Charlie's education.     

There was no doubt that it was a matter of concern for both of them. Indeed, Charlie deserved to get the best of education. Charles nodded at her and said, "Well, I see. I'll keep an eye on it."  

Charles kept puffing the cigar which miffed Leila but she decided to say what she had planned to say.     

"Charlie has spent his third birthday. I just hope that you can arrange a birthday party for him. The most I can do is to buy him a cake to celebrate his birthday. 

But... this year is really very special for him. After all, he met his father. That's why I wanted you to give him a party. We can sit together and have a meal. I'm sure he will be happy,"  she proposed. 

Leila could not wait any longer to execute the next level of her plan. Now that Charles had got bonded with Charlie, it was her time to come closer to Charles. Using Charlie's birthday was a good excuse to achieve her goal.     

'Now that Charlie was unwilling to help, I have to help myself,' she thought.     Charles frowned when he heard Leila say 'We'. The displeasure was right on his face. He never considered her to be his family. However, as a father, he was responsible for Charlie. There was no doubt that Charlie deserved a grand birthday party. 'I owe him a lot. Even if I give him the best everything in the world, I will never be able to compensate for not being there for him in his early years.

This is my chance to host a really special party for him. I will make it a grand one,' he thought to himself.   

Giving Leila a glance, he said, "Okay, I'Il fix this party. I'll inform you the time and place."


1 comment:

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