Why’s My Darling So Upset?
“Want some coffee?” I asked Nick.
“Yes, please.” He held out his cup eagerly, then took a sip. “D*mn, that’s good!”
He nearly jumped out of his chair and cried, “I feel like I’m in heaven! Where’d you get this?!”
“Oh… Haha, it’s just a custom drink from the Starbucks out front.” I smiled stiffly. It was actually from
Aaron; he brewed it himself.
Breakfast was embarrassing. The food was incredible-the bacon, crepes, and eggs were all perfect-but
conversation afterward ruined my appetite. My stomach felt like it was filled with rocks.
“Honestly, Olive… When are you gonna break up with him?”
“I don’t know. Maybe today.” I shrugged and avoided Aaron’s eyes. I desperately racked my brain for
something to say that’d liven up the frigid atmosphere.
“Maybe never…” Aaron muttered. His voice grew quieter.
I swallowed another mouthful of coffee as I felt my heart sink.
I don’t know why I teased him like that. Aaron looked devastated, and his furrowed brow made him look
like a lost child.
But we weren’t anything more than f*ck buddies.
“If you like the coffee, why don’t you take some with you?” Aaron suddenly asked. “It doesn’t look like
you ate much else.”
“No, I… I just don’t have that big of an appetite right now.”
“It’s alright. I’m no chef at all. I won’t be upset if you don’t like my cooking…”
“Aaron, that’s not—”
“Hello? Earth to Olive! What are you thinking about?” Nick waved his hand in front of my face. “You’ve
daydreaming a lot lately.”
“Nothing.” I smiled weakly. “I’m just tired.”
“Let’s just get through our work today then.”
And so I once again started to spend nearly every waking hour on my feet.
Vincent played the perfect boyfriend as usual. He knew I had a sex aversion, so he stopped forcing me
into any sort of excessive intimacy. He even pampered me during my period like he used to!
I knew the truth though. He was simply having his sexual appetite satisfied elsewhere, so he didn’t feel
the need to pressure me into sex.
As for Aaron, neither of us reached out to the other for the next few days. I occasionally wondered what
he was doing, but thoughts of him quickly left my mind when I started working.
Eventually, the momentum in the lab slowed when we hit a bottleneck in our research. We were
struggling to move
forward, and our next progress deadline was getting closer.
I fumed at the pile of empty test tubes on my lab bench. I had performed a dozen tests and every one
had failed. I just couldn’t see what the problem was.
I scratched my head as Nick laughed out loud next to me. “With all that scratching, your hair looks like
a bird’s nest.”
“And you look like a raccoon.” I pointed to the dark circles under his eyes.
“So do you!” He laughed louder.
My phone suddenly rang: Vincent was calling.
“Hey, babe, are you free tonight?”
“I’m busy with my experiments. What’s up?”
“There’s a new movie premiering later, and I wanna see it with you.” Vincent paused, then added
thoughtfully, “But since you’re busy, we can go another time.”
“Sounds good. Talk to you later.” I sighed and hung up. I wasn’t in the mood for watching a movie. Or
anything else for that matter. Most of all, I was too lazy to deal with Vincent. Maybe it was because I
wasn’t in love with him anymore, but all his voice did was bore me.
But within seconds, the phone rang again. I frowned and picked up before even reading the number.
“I told you I’m busy! Leave me alone!”
The person on the other end was quiet for a moment, but before I could hang up, I heard him laugh.
“Why’s my darling so upset?”
My eyes widened and I looked down at my screen.
It was Aaron.
Miraculously, my irritation evaporated as soon as I read his name. “Sorry, I thought you were Vincent…
My last batch of samples failed and it’s killing me…”
“Breakthroughs don’t happen every day. Don’t beat yourself up over it.” His gentle smile was audible.
“Just wait there when you’re off. I’ll pick you up.”
Aaron didn’t even give me a chance to object before he hung up the phone.
As the screen darkened, I looked away.
“Your friend?” Nick yawned. “Can you ask him to bring me a cup of coffee? If I don’t get more caffeine
soon, I’ll turn to alcohol…”
“I can get you some,” I offered.
When I returned with his drink, his eyes widened. “Did you buy me coffee or walk down the aisle?”
I pulled at my skirt awkwardly. “Is it too much?”
Before I picked up his coffee, I stopped by my office to
change. And put on some makeup. And fix my hair.
“And you’re wearing perfume.” Nick’s nose wrinkled. “Something’s fishy… Do you have a date tonight?”
I wasn’t sure why I got dressed up. I just didn’t want Aaron to think less of me…
“Enjoy your drink. I gotta run.” I glanced down at my phone and saw Aaron’s text saying he’d arrived. I
impatiently shoved the cup into Nick’s hand and hurried down the stairs.
Aaron was wearing a sweatshirt and jeans, and he looked no different from a student… aside from his
black sports car, of course.
A few of the students leaving their last lectures whistled when I got into the car. It made me so nervous
that I had to roll up the window immediately.
“Where are we going?”
Aaron c*cked his head at me and smiled. “It’s a secret.”
“Let’s get going then.” I met his gaze firmly, even though I was brimming with anticipation.
Soon, the car came to a stop.
We were outside the movie theater.
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