Chapter 4: Don’t Fake It
Candice stayed silent for a while, not explaining herself.
Byron had enough going for him that he always assumed that any woman who approached him was trying to get with him. After all, he had plenty to attract the opposite sex. He was handsome and rich, so the probability of women with an agenda was high.
“Doctor Wilson, please refer my husband to another doctor for his illness.”
Byron took a long look at her calm expression. “Are you going to blame yourself for his condition?”
Candice didn’t deny it. He pursed his lips and handed over Rufus’s medical records. “Harry Ward, Biology and Reproductive Medicine. Mention my name.”
Byron felt a pang of conscience. He had taken her first night after all, The least he could do was introduce her to the other expert at the hospital who shared his field. The two of them were known for being notoriously hard to get an appointment with.
Harry’s clinic fee was always high, while Byron’s varied depending on his mood. His car said a lot about his salary.
“Are you a relative of Doctor Wilson?” Harry asked.
Harry began to talk about Byron’s skills. “Doctor Wilson is a famous surgeon. Didn’t he tell you? He once had a patient with congenital dysplasia. He was over thirty years old and still a virgin. He could only get it up to three centimeters. Doctor Wilson did the operation himself, and after it was six centimeters.” He dangled his glasses in one hand. “Even though it was still small, that’s a medical miracle.”
Candice was too embarrassed to say anything.
She hadn’t quite understood things, so she’d secretly asked Nancy that morning about dick size–around eight inches, to be precise.
“That’s how big Rufus is? He’s a fine specimen of a man then. No wonder you’re upset with him.”
Candice thought to herself that she had just found out something unexpected about Byron. And his clinic was crowded every day, so it was clear that a lot of men weren’t so well–endowed. Aside from his attitude, he really was a perfect ten.
Harry flipped through Rufus’s file. “You should let Doctor Wilson treat your husband. His skills are better than mine.”
Candice was at a loss for an answer, but suddenly Byron’s voice sounded from outside the door. “Don’t worry about it, Harry.”
Harry stood up behind his desk. “Who are you?” He wondered if she was an ex–girlfriend, but he couldn’t ask while Candice was there.
“Don’t pry,” Bryon simply stated.
Harry glanced back at Candice with a hint of a laugh on his lips.
Candice had spent most of the day at the hospital before she returned home. Rufus still wasn’t back, and his phone was switched off.
At 1 AM, Rufus’s friend Jervis Brooks called Candice and asked her to come pick Rufus up from the New Century Bar.
Rufus had a high alcohol tolerance, but by the time she got to him, he was nearly incoherent.
When Candice arrived at the bar, she found Rita there.
This was the first time the two of them had met since Candice had learned of their affair. It was immediately clear that the other woman had a part in how much Rufus had drunk.
Rita pretended not to know who Candice was.
Rufus was slumped on a couch with a vacant expression. Jervis stood to greet Candice as she came in. “He’s had two bottles of whiskey, and just threw up.”
Candice didn’t move. “What prompted this?”
Jervis understood what she was asking, and appeared embarrassed. “He had a project go wrong at work, and came here to drown his sorrows.”
The depths of Rufus’s love were clear. He was troubled, but he still wanted to spend time with Rita.
Candice fought back her temper. “Time to come home, Rufus.”
Rufus reacted to her words by shaking off her outstretched hand and hugging Rita to himself. “She doesn’t want to leave!” he shouted. “Candice won’t agree to a divorce! She insists on staying with me!”
Everyone fell silent, staring at him blankly.
Candice shoved him. “Stop your nonsense!”
Rufus couldn’t tell who was who anymore. “Candice is a stalker. I’m so sick of her!”
Candice felt like he had slapped her in the face with her words. She was embarrassed enough to tug at his arm. “You want to leave so badly?”
Rufus’s eyes were red and he was panting heavily.
By complete coincidence, today was also Byron’s birthday and he happened to be at the same bar. He stood with a wine glass in one hand, watching the scene unfold from the brightly–lit hallway.
Enos was next to him, a girl in his arms. She wasn’t the same one who had confronted him in front of the hospital, but was instead nicely plump. It was clear that changing women was as simple to him as changing clothes. He could find one anywhere, and he never let his emotions get in the
Candice felt deeply ashamed. The inscrutable look on Byron‘ s face made her extremely uncomfortable. “Do you like what you see?”
Byron turned his attention to her face. “I didn’t mean to walk in on you.”
Candice didn’t buy it. “But then you stayed to watch the show?”
Byron let out a laugh. “You’re not like other women.” He thought for a moment. “You’re rude.”
He had been drinking too, though he wasn’t as drunk as Rufus. When he opened his mouth, the bitter scent of wine wafted across Candice.
An idea took hold in her mind. No woman could ever be a match for Byron, especially when it came to emotions. No matter what she tried, he would always come out on top. She had never seen a man keep such poise even while drunk. His eyes were clear with only passing moments of confusion, and she felt like he could perfectly read her thoughts while she was still left guessing at his.
She looked back at Rufus, who was close to blacking out.
Byron flirtatiously brushed a finger across Candice’s lips. She wasn’t wearing any makeup, and he found the pale pink more seductive than any red. “You’re rude to your husband too.”
He always behaved properly, but the lights and the wine
brought desire shooting through him with that touch.
Byron was like a flame. She could burn in him, and he’d emerge unscathed.
Candice took a step back. “You should go sober up, Doctor Wilson.”
Bryon grinned lazily.
She didn’t think much of it. When men came out for fun, there probably wasn’t much truth to their words.
Once, Rufus had a meeting with a client but his secretary was off work. He had taken Candice along to the company dinner instead. The men there had described women as jalapenos and rice. The jalapenos were spicy, wild, and addictive, but they couldn’t take much of them in one go. The rice was too bland and soft, with no challenge and not enough emotion. So the conclusion was that the best sort of woman was a mix of jalapenos and rice, balancing the spicy with the soft.
Candice hated listening to men talk about women that way, but in the depths of their drinks, all men loved to talk about
She took Rufus and left. He muttered the whole way about Rita, as if Candice had been the one to viciously break them
Enos stared at her departing back. “I finally understand why you took a chance with a married woman.”
Byron kept his expression neutral. “I slept with her first, and then found out she was married.”
Enos couldn’t seem to get enough, continuing to stare. “She’s quite thin. She must have a great figure. The last girl I brought home wasn’t at all what I expected, but I bet she is.” He immediately asked Byron, “What’s got you so distracted?”
Enos pursed his lips. “It’s okay to tease her, but don’t fake it.”
Byron’s lips curled up in a smile. “Okay.”
“Love grows with time,” Enos said sagely. “Maybe.”
Byron silently walked away.
Jervis looked across the card table at Rita. “What do you
Rita picked up Rufus’s used glass. “None of your business.”
“You’re old enough to get properly married. You dumped Rufus, so why are you playing with his marriage?”
“Rufus is the one who’s playing around. He couldn’t get over me so now he’s chasing me like a pathetic beggar.”
Enos heard a familiar voice and pointed at Rita. “Isn’t she the idiot who spread rumors about you at the hospital, Bryon?”
“What rumors?” his girlfriend asked.
“That he’s dating her.” Enos was amused. “My friend has so many women lining up to be with him, and they use every tactic they can.”
Byron’s eyes skimmed over the empty doorway, then he left.