The Caliente Affairs, Volume One

Meet Dina and Nina Caliente, twenty-something identical twin sisters who have moved back to their little hometown of Pleasantview. Not everyone in town is happy to see the twins back, and it's not long before the two are causing trouble and uprooting everybody's pleasant life.

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12. Breaking Apart

It was Christmas Eve, and Mortimer Goth could finally be happy about celebrating Christmas. For the past month he had been working on writing his will. A lot had to be sorted out - the most important thing being his vast fortune. For awhile, he’d felt a barrier between himself and his younger wife, Dina Caliente. He knew that unless he changed some things, it would mean she would end up with most of his money – something he was not so comfortable with. A few changes later, and Mortimer was happy he had sorted out this problem - which meant he could finally relax and start to prepare for Christmas. He stood up and went downstairs to the master bedroom, before Dina walked in from her morning jog. Although a little uncertain at first, Dina now loved her new house... my house! Just thinking about it made her feel great. Of course, not all of it was hers, she had her husband and his son Alexander for company... for company? What was she thinking, they were her family now. Then why doesn’t it feel like that, she thought. For a while, Dina had been avoiding Mortimer in case he realised she was pregnant. Was that what had been stopping her from resuming their relationship though? Thinking clearly after her jog, Dina realised she had better make amends with this family because they were the closest thing to a family she had now. She hadn’t spoken to her twin sister or Don Lothario since leaving them at her old residence. And although it would be her first Christmas without her sister, Dina wasn’t about to go and apologise for acting irrational regarding her possibly illegitimate pregnancy and seeking out an abortion clinic. She stretched and remembered her husband had said he was going to be working on the computer before she left. She would call up to him, but it was quite early, and Alex’s bedroom was situated next to the study. She went upstairs to see if he was still there. He wasn’t, but a yellow binder caught her eye, and Dina couldn’t resist taking a look. Unfortunately, it had been sealed, but something unsettling made Dina desperately want to know what was inside. She peered into the waste paper basket on the floor next to the computer and saw a screwed up piece of paper. She picked it out and unfolded the tattered sheet. It had come from the printer and had two lines typed on it:

'Mortimer Victor Goth'
'Last Will And Testament'

Now Dina definitely wanted to know what was in the binder, if indeed it did contain Mortimer’s will. She logged onto the computer, but her attempts were immediately thwarted when the recently opened document which Dina suspected was Mortimer’s will was password protected. She unsuccessfully guessed a few times before remembering that this was a new computer, so Mortimer would have probably written down the password somewhere close. She got up and checked the bookshelf next to the computer desk. She found what she was looking for; the instruction manual. Immediately on the first page was a handwritten list of all of their names and passwords.

Alex - 24andER13
Dina - 4evagomenasai
Mortimer - belladonna

Dina now had his password, but was shocked to see Mortimer had her password as well. Could he secretly be spying on her? What if this was the reason he was finalising his will? Immediately, Dina felt the need to know what was in that document was more important than she had first thought. Scanning through the first few pages, Dina could see nothing that was cause for concern. A few new details about the house were obviously why he had been editing his will, but Dina still felt there was more to it. It was then that Dina found what she had secretly hoped to see - the paragraph regarding Mortimer’s wealth. Quietly, Dina read aloud the words... “All further assets will remain within the house 33 Hacienda Approach’ and its residents. No other wealth shall be divided amongst relatives and friends unless it is the wish of said residents. Current residents are as follows: Alexander Thomas Goth; Dina Caliente-Goth - plus.” Plus - what on earth could that mean? More money, perhaps? Dina kept on reading. “Regarding the individual sums of money for the residents: 25 percent shall be allocated to Alexander Thomas Goth - see section five, paragraph blah, blah, ah - and 75 percent will be allocated to Dina Caliente-Goth and the offspring conceived by her and Mortimer Victor Goth. In the event of no heir/heiress being born, the remaining 75 percent shall remain within the house, ownership of which shall be granted to... Cassandra Victoria Goth.” That was it. Dina would be left with nothing, unless she and Mortimer had a child. Dina was shocked and angered. This was far more serious than she had ever imagined.
As she finished sending an e-mail, Dina felt a little better knowing that a copy of what she had read had been sent to someone whom she could trust and would know whether or not Mortimer could legally do this. Caught up in her own thoughts, she didn’t hear Mortimer approaching from the stairs behind her. “What are you doing on there?” He asked. Dina jumped up and turned around, facing her partner.
“Why? Are you scared I might find something I’m not supposed to.”
“What do you mean.” Mortimer asked, with a suspicious glare.
“Well, it’s obvious you were keeping secrets from me, I should have seen it. How could you?”
“Wait. What have I done?”
“You think our marriage is just a game? Some pit stop on my way to fame and fortune, is that it? How could you leave me nothing?” Dina cried out in despair.
Mortimer realised Dina had seen his will. “You weren’t supposed to see that, it’s a private document. What you’re doing could be considered illegal.”
“Oh, and I’m sure forcing someone to choose between having a baby or having no money is considered perfectly aboveboard!” Dina sarcastically remarked.
“I thought it was only fair. Given our relationship, I gathered a baby was the way we were heading.”
“And if it wasn’t, what then? Were you going to tell me about your plans. I can’t believe what you’ve done, why would you even consider it?” Dina asked.
“I think we’ve both known for a while that this marriage was beginning to fall apart. I was just doing what needed to be done in order to ensure my family weren’t robbed of their wealth.” Dina turned from being angry to being shocked. How long had her husband been feeling this way?
Not wanting to show Mortimer she was hurt by his act of indecency, she quickly left. “If you thought we were heading for trouble, then you should have talked to me instead of sneaking around behind my back and robbing me like a thief.” As Dina went downstairs, Mortimer pondered whether or not he had acted foolishly.
“Dad?” Alex quietly asked, as he opened his bedroom door. Mortimer blushed, and realised he had completely forgotten his son’s bedroom was next to the study. Feeling the need to explain his actions, Mortimer went into his son’s bedroom for a talk. Downstairs, Dina slammed her bedroom door, and broke down into tears. Could this really be it? If she didn’t have a child with Mortimer, he’d disown her? Wiping her eyes, Dina looked up at Mortimer’s portrait of the ‘mysterious woman’ he’d brought from his old house. Dina knew who she was - it was his old wife, Bella. The same woman that Dina had heard Mortimer call out to in his dreams, and the same woman whose name was constantly on his mind. I mean, it was even his new password, Dina thought. Is this what Dina was to Mortimer - just a replacement for the ex that walked out on him? Dina felt sick to her stomach thinking about it. Surely this was no way to have a child. Even if... no, she couldn’t let herself think such thoughts. She needed to clear her head. She grabbed a change of clothes and silently rushed out of the Hacienda. As the sun was rising, her less than dramatic exit wasn’t enough for Dina, so she walked over to the trash can and kicked it over. That’ll let Mortimer know I’ve left, whilst also creating another mess for him to clean up. Although this one would be a lot easier to clean than the mess hed made of their relationship.

*

Nina Caliente woke up that morning at seven-thirty, groggy and confused. It seemed she had blacked out about five hours ago, and was now on top of her bed, still in her formal dress. All she could remember about last night was that she and her fiancé Don Lothario had arranged to have a few friends over for a sort of re-house-warming now that the two of them lived alone together. But Don called Nina to say he had to work an extra shift at the hospital - which meant he turned up almost four hours after all the guests had arrived, with six of his workmates in the back of his car. Nina’s lovely vision of a formal get-together was instantly ruined, as Don and his work buddies all rushed into the den with chips, dip, and beer under each arm. Of course, the more dignified of her guests excused themselves, but some of the others were taken in by Don’s impromptu party. But not Nina, she was left to clean up the mess until two AM when exhaustion got the better of her and she found her way upstairs - alone. Feeling angry and confused, Nina stormed out of her bedroom, knowing exactly where she’d find Don. Before giving up for the night, Nina had spoken Don - seductively trying to lure him to bed with promises of passion, Nina was ultimately left disappointed, as Don chose video games over her. What kind of an adult is he, she thought, she couldn’t believe that in a few months he’d be fathering their child. Well, at least that’s what she hoped. Ever since their argument, the only time Don had recognised Nina’s condition was when he had told Mortimer and Alex before they left. She found Don in the den, yawning and swaying on the spot - obviously still drunk. “Hey, you won’t believe it. I reached the final level!” Don cried with joy.
“Really? That’s a coincidence, because I just reached the final level too.” Nina sarcastically began. “The final level of my patience! You stayed up all night playing video games; what time did your friends leave?” Nina enquired.
“Ed was here, until an hour ago... you look mad?” Don said, with a dazed and confused expression.
“Of course I’m mad! What the hell is wrong with you?”
“Nothing!” Don pouted.
“That’s the biggest understatement of the year! You’re acting like a spoilt kid, and god help me, sometimes I feel like I’m your mother - which a part of me wishes I were, so I could pull down your pants and spank you!” Nina yelled.
“Ooh, that sounds like fun.” Don said, as he attempted to pull Nina in for a kiss. Nina shoved Don off of her, and smelling his breath, almost threw up.
“Are you insane! You stink like a brewery and now you wanna have sex? Well tough luck, I’m so angry, I doubt you’ll get lucky with me again until our baby’s born.” Dina threatened.
“Oh big whoop, you’re gonna ban me from sex again? You don’t think I’ll just break you like last time?” Don slipped out, too drunk to realise what he was saying.
“What are you going on about, I never banned you from having sex with me?”
“Sure you did, the minute you had your mind set on babies, you wouldn’t let me come near you without checking to see if you were ‘evovulating’ - so I knew it was either do it or be damned.” Don slurred, as he mixed up his words and left Nina speechless.
“You’re not saying what I think you’re saying?” Nina hesitated to ask.
“I’m surprised I lasted as long as I did, I’ve got more stamina than I thought.” Don was suddenly proud of himself.
“The only reason I’m pregnant is because you were horny!? You never wanted a baby, did you? You just wanted sex – but I wanted to make a baby, and I wouldn’t give it to you otherwise.” Nina finally realised the truth.
“Yeah, so if you think about it, this is really your fault.” Don said. Nina’s eyes lit up with flames, as she raised her hand and slapped her lover across the face.
“You bastard.” Nina folded her arms and shook her head at Don with a seething glare.
“Wha, What?” Don asked, shocked at his fiancée’s temper. Nina walked away, as Don stood their in disbelief. Nina was hurt, and suddenly Don had sobered up enough to realise he’d just made a terrible mess of things.

*

“I’m sorry I kind of overdid the pancakes.” Angela Pleasant apologised. She had been cooking breakfast for her parents almost all week. She’d also been doing all the household chores, buying groceries, and keeping up to date with her homework, as well as helping her twin sister Lilith with hers. She hoped all of this would show Daniel and Mary-Sue just how mature she was, and that they’d finally give her an answer about whether or not she could go travelling for a year after she graduated.
“It’s alright. You didn’t have to make them for us, I know you’ve been trying your best to be responsible and mature this past week and it shows. That’s why me and your mother had a long chat last night about your future.” Daniel said. This was it, what Angela had been waiting for. “We both agree that your decision not to go to University, although a little risky, is perfectly acceptable when taken into account how much youre going to be learning out in the real world. So, you have our blessing.”
“You mean it!?” Angela asked, as she smiled with joy.
“Of course. As long as you phone and write every single day!” Daniel laughed, although Angela knew he was really being serious.
“Yes? Yes! I can’t believe it... Mum, are you crying?” Angela asked, as Mary-Sue wiped her eyes.
“Oh! It’s just, you’re so grown up.” Mary-Sue said, as Angela broke out into a little dance of joy.
“Sorry, what did you say?” Mary-Sue laughed.
“Never mind. I just know that whatever you do with your future you’re going to make me so proud.” Mary-Sue turned away and desperately tried to hide the tears falling from her eyes.
“What your mother means is that we know you’ll make us both proud.” Daniel corrected his wife, who was emotional after the events of last week. She had received a call from her doctor in regards to her health; she needed to come into hospital for more tests to determine whether or not she had an underlying blood condition.
“You won’t regret it, daddy, I will make you and mum proud.” Angela said, as she heard a knock at the front door.
“I know you will.” Daniel looked at his beautiful daughter with an ache in his heart. He and his wife had had a serious discussion, not only about Angela’s future, but about everyone’s future. Mary-Sue made Daniel think realistically about if she wasn’t around anymore. It was painful to discuss, and Daniel wanted to make sure it never happened. That’s why they both decided that if Mary-Sue became even more ill, it would be best if Angela and Lilith weren’t around to see. With Angela wanting to leave Pleasantview for a year anyway, it made the situation easier. Daniel assured his wife that what she was suggesting was a last case scenario, but Mary-Sue was adamant that if things got too bad, she would leave her job and Pleasantview behind to beat her illness in peace, and she would ask her parents to move in and look after Lilith. Daniel hoped and prayed that things would never get that bad. Feeling the need to soak up as much time with his wife as possible, he suggested the two go for a gentle morning stroll.
Angela was surprised to see her boyfriend Dustin Broke when she answered the door. They had already exchanged presents, and Angela had wanted some time apart to sort out her feelings regarding Dustin. She loved him, so very much, but she didn’t want that to stop her from following her dream of travelling outside Pleasantview. She didn’t want to force Dustin into a long distance relationship either, and she couldn’t bear the thought of breaking up before she left in six months time, she wasn’t even sure that six months down the line she could bring herself to leave Dustin. But now her parents had said yes and everything was official, Angela knew what she had to do. “What are you doing here?”
“I know we already gave each other presents, but I was hanging around the house, a.k.a. the building site, and was bored out of my skull. I wondered if maybe you just wanted to hang out and do stuff?” Dustin smiled.
“Sure, what do you want to do?” Angela innocently asked.
“You know... Stuff.” Dustin repeated himself, as he cuddled Angela. His warm embrace was too much, it was killing her inside knowing that she was going to have to leave him. But he needed to know now rather than later.
“No, no stuff. We need to talk.” Angela said monotonously, as she motioned for Dustin to follow her outside. It was a typical Pleasantview winter, not a cloud in the sky! This is what Angela was talking about, she couldn’t believe that only once in her life had she seen snow. She imagined the sights she’d see outside Pleasantview, but her thoughts were short lived as Dustin joined her.
“Why did you want to talk to me out here?” He asked.
“Privacy.”
“Isn’t it private enough in your bedroom?” Dustin hinted.
“No, Lilith’s on the computer. She’s been on it everyday this week chatting to Alexander Goth. I swear something more than friendship’s going on between those two.” Angela theorised.
“Really? I think that’s sweet, Lilith’s a great girl and it was awful what Dirk did to her. She’d benefit from a nice boy like Alex. Maybe in the new year we could double date.” Dustin suggested, once again embracing his love.
“Stop!” Angela blurted out and backed away. She couldn’t bear lying to Dustin anymore.
“What’s wrong?” Dustin sported a puzzled expression. Angela pouted, trying to hold back her tears.
“I don’t know how to tell you this. I want you to know that I love you...”
“And I love you too.” Dustin interrupted her.
“Let me finish, please. I don’t think this can go on.” Angela began.
“What?”
“Our relationship. After I graduate next year... I’m leaving Pleasantview.”
“What! You’re family’s moving?”
“No, just me. I want to travel instead of going to University. And I don’t want to keep you tethered to a long distance relationship - so I think it’s best if we break up now.” Angela finished. Dustin's puzzled expression remained frozen. He had been left speechless, what could he say after that?
“You want to end it now? What about Prom? What about going to Sim State together? What about... us?” Dustin said, as he began to hold back tears of his own.
“I though it would just be easier this way.”
“Oh! Sure, easy for you maybe. A good excuse to get away and start a new life with some new guy.” Dustin suggested.
“It’s not like that.” Angela reasoned.
“Why can’t you just be honest and tell me the real reason you want to break up. What is it, you’ve suddenly realised that what your precious father’s been saying about me all along is true, and that you’re never going to have a future with me?” Dustin argued.
“No. In my heart, I feel that if we’re meant to be together, then we won’t need to pretend that a long distance relationship can work. And I do think we’re meant to be together.” Angela hoped out loud.
“If we’re meant to be together, then why are you breaking up with me?” Dustin yelled.
“Don’t yell!” Angela cried, as she tried to make Dustin understand why she was doing what she was doing. “I know that six more months of being with you would just make this decision even harder. I know I couldn’t do it, and I wouldn’t. I’d stay here, and yes we’d be together, but deep down a part of me would always regret not being true to myself. And I don’t want us to be like that. Even if that means we can only be friends. So I’m doing the right thing, and I understand you might not see that right now but I know that given some time, you’ll agree.”
“Sure, after girl number four, I think I’ll definitely be seeing the upside of breaking up.” Dustin cruelly suggested.
“No, it is not like that. Why are you making this harder than it has to be?” Angela asked, hurt by Dustin’s coldness.
“Oh, so now it’s my fault. I didn’t do anything, you’re the one who wants to break up. Why you can’t give me the decency and just be truthful and admit that you’re getting out whilst you still can is beyond me.”
“You don’t think these are my true feelings? You wanna know my true feelings? I can’t even begin to contemplate giving myself to you and then leaving... It would be like it meant nothing.” Angela pleaded.
“What’s wrong with that?” Dustin coldly asked. Angela saw a side to Dustin she didn’t like, and could hold back her tears no longer.
“Then, I’m sorry. I’m sorry you feel as if our years together have been a waste of time.”
“Don’t worry, I’ve got an urge to make up for it.” Dustin vindictively remarked, before walking away and back through the house. Angela was heartbroken. It was like Dustin had completely shut off his emotions. It was understandable she supposed, if he indeed really did love her then maybe it was the only way he could leave without breaking down and crying like herself. Dustin couldn’t see Angela’s logic about breaking up, all he knew was that he loved Angela and wanted to be with her no matter what. He felt foolish, he did feel as if the whole of their relationship had been a waste of time if Angela had had planned this all along. He knew there must be more to the story... What if Angela had met someone else; a mysterious, exotic man who was luring her away with promises of excitement and travel, Dustin thought. It was surely tempting; a life he could never offer Angela. Maybe they were better off apart - no-one had ever thought it would last to begin with. So that was it, he thought, we’re broken up. His most meaningful relationship had shattered into a million pieces in front of his eyes. But he couldn’t mourn, instead he hungered for revenge. He wanted to tear Angela’s heart apart just like she had done to him. He knew it was an empty threat, in the back of his mind. He would get home and find some solitude in his concrete shell of a room. If only he had made it straight there... instead of bumping into Lilith. Lilith; Angela’s twin sister. Angela had warned Dustin that her sister appeared to have a crush on him. And now he saw just what she was talking about. The look in her eyes when she touched his hand and apologised for what her sister had just done was full of such compassion and admiration - the same look he used to get from Angela. “You knew?” Dustin said, as his reflexes kicked in, jerking his hand away from Lilith’s touch.
“I hoped she’d back out, I know how much she loves you.”
“If she loved me, then she’d want to be with me.” Dustin said. “Wouldn’t you want to be with the man you loved, no matter where you lived?”
“Of course, if it was you.” Lilith said, as she backtracked and tried to rationalise her rather suggestive comment. “What I mean is, I know what you and Angela have been through and I just can’t believe she’s doing this.” Lilith reached for Dustin’s hand ever so slightly again.
This time, Dustin completed the action and interlocked his fingers with Lilith’s. “What would you do? If you and me were... together.” Dustin dangerously suggested. In a few seconds, Lilith had turned a deep shade of red, as she dared to think about Dustin’s question.
“I... couldn’t leave you. Not if I loved you as much as Angela says she does.”
“What about you?” Dustin asked, his voice no more louder than a whisper.
“What about me?” Lilith coyly replied.
Moving closer to Lilith’s body, Dustin seized his chance for revenge. He could hear Angela coming into the kitchen, and Lilith was too wrapped up in Dustin to realise that her sister was approaching. “How much would you love me?” Dustin replied to Lilith’s question with another.
“I don’t think I should answer that.” Lilith honestly replied.
“You don’t have to, I think I already know the answer.” Dustin smiled, as he leaned in to kiss Lilith. Reeling from her break-up and still wiping the tears away from her eyes, Angela wasn’t emotionally ready for the sight that she stumbled upon. Her sister, in the arms of her ex-boyfriend - gazing into each others eyes.
As Lilith gently guided Dustin’s chin away from her face, she could see that he was really hurt by her sisters rejection. Despite wanting to badly kiss Dustin, she just smiled and stroked his face. “I’m here for you... but as a friend.” Lilith said. Ever so slightly, Dustin looked to his right and grinned evilly, as Angela backed out of the kitchen in disbelief.
“Thanks, I’m feeling a lot better now.” Dustin replied to a clueless Lilith, who showed him out of the house. Angela silently ran up the stairs. Although Lilith didn’t kiss him, his revenge was complete. But as he left the Pleasant house, he began to wonder if he had gone too far. No, he said to himself, desperately trying to grasp the feelings of rejection that Angela had cruelly inflicted upon him. But he couldn’t - and that made him feel even worse than Angela had done. He didn’t like feeling this way; he didn’t want to feel anything, he just wanted to cut himself off from reality before he collapsed into a stream of his own tears. Trying to calm down, Dustin breathed slowly and turned around. He wasn’t going home - not just yet. He couldn’t stand the thought of being trapped in his room with only himself for company. Walking in the opposite direction, Dustin smiled, as he knew that soon he’d feel a lot calmer.

*

Feeling totally disoriented, Dina regained her composure after Dustin Broke had walked straight into her. “Watch where you’re going!” she cried to no avail. Dustin completely ignored her and just kept on walking. That was weird, she thought to herself. Her thoughts about Mortimer had completely abandoned her after that, and it didn’t make things any easier when she realised she’d walked straight onto Ed Wilson’s front lawn, just as he was collecting the morning paper.
“Dina!” He said with a smile, although he was clearly shocked.
“Oh hey! How’ve you been?” Dina nonchalantly asked.
“I’m sore, I was up all night playing video games.” Ed said, as he stretched out his arms.
“Well you know what they say, no pain no gain!” Dina laughed.
“It doesn’t hurt that much.” Ed tried to act tough.
“Are you sure?”
“Yeah, I know what pain feels like. I was dumped by you remember.” Ed shot at Dina. Ouch, she thought.
“I should have seen that coming.” Dina exclaimed.
“No, I should have seen you coming - you’re like clockwork. How long’s it been?” Ed asked. Dina hadnt seen Ed since she discovered she had fallen pregnant during her affair with him. Dina was sure she should have walked away by now. Ed was not the man she wanted. She’d already gone through this a million times in her head. But for some reason she wasn’t budging, and what’s more, she even felt herself beginning to crave his convex body.
“Too long.” Dina delicately announced, and embraced Ed with an apologetic hug. Of course, it started out that way. But Dina held on for just a few seconds longer, and when they parted, Ed looked at her with a knowing glance.
“Do you wanna come in?” Ed dangerously asked.
“I do.” Dina replied without remorse. As she stepped into Ed’s spacious home, she suddenly felt more at home with him than she had done at her own house. Whats making me feel so connected with Ed all of a sudden, she asked herself. Dina had her suspicions, but knew that to confirm them, she would have to do something she promised herself she’d never do again.
“I’m glad you stopped by actually, there’s something I’ve been meaning to give you.” Ed revealed.
“What? You got me a present!?” Dina asked.
“Sort of, I definitely know you’ll like it.” Ed giggled.
“What is it?” Dina said, as she joined in laughing.
“Come closer and I’ll tell you.” said Ed, with a wink. Knowing she was probably edging near dangerous territory, Dina threw caution to the wind and moved closer to Ed. It had been a while, but his scent was still familiar to her, and it suddenly made her feel incredible attracted to him. This is it, Dina thought. She knew there was no turning back.
“What is it?”

“Your underwear, you left them last time you were here.” said Ed, with a mischievous grin.
“How do you know I didn’t leave them here on purpose.” Dina suggestively propositioned.
“Did you?” Ed asked, a seriousness in his face now. Seeing the time for foreplay was over, Dina showed Ed she was serious and caressed his face before pulling him in for a long and passionate kiss that didn’t stop until the two were on Ed’s bed - completely undressed.
“Are you sure this is what you want?” Ed asked. Dina was silent; she couldn’t turn back now that she was this far. She relaxed back on Ed’s bed and gracefully removed her underwear. 
Ed smiled and paused for a few seconds. He was overcome with emotion. After their last time together, he never dared to dream that Dina would come back to him. But deep down, he’d always hoped she would. He wasn’t sure before whether or not Dina’s feeling’s were true. When she had left last time, he blamed himself. But now, he knew what he felt was real... because she was feeling it too. Gently carresing each other, Dina closed her eyes and kissed Ed deeply. She felt wonderful, this wasn’t just a lusty affair, she actually cared for Ed and wanted - no, she needed to show him how much he meant to her. Being this close again, Dina was reminded of why she began to fall for Ed in the first place. If only she had stopped fighting those feelings and given in. She could have had all of this and more months ago. The passion was building, and Dina felt her connection with Ed was greater now than ever before. She finally knew the answer to what she had been wondering about all this time. There was no denying it, the reason she felt so connected to Ed... He was the father of the baby that was still growing inside of her.

*

Later that morning, Nina silently watched Don manoeuvre his way around all the mess he’d made the night before. Nina smelt the oatmeal he was cooking and suddenly realised that in her anger, she had forgotten to have breakfast. Without saying a word, Nina walked over to the refrigerator and grimaced, as she removed a half eaten packet of nachos. Unable to clean up after her pig of a boyfriend, Nina simply left them on the side and searched in vain for some milk. There was none. Don had used the last of it. “Great!” She muttered under her breath.
“What was that?” Don called out from over at the dining table.
“Nothing. It’s just...” Nina paused. “No, I don’t want to fight again.”
“Oh, what? What have I done now?” Don rudely asked.
“Well if you must know, you used all the milk and now I can’t have any breakfast.” Nina answered. Don scraped his chair across the floor and headed for the door. “Where are you going?”
“To get the queen her precious milk.” Don sarcastically spat.
“Oh you are unbelievable, I can’t believe you’re mad at me.” Nina was flabbergasted.
“Come on, you want milk, well I’m sure I can manage that. I’m sure I’ll finally be able to do something right for once.” Don yelled.
“Don’t make this all about you and your problems. I’m hurt because you’re treating me like crap, and when you treat me like crap you treat my baby like crap. Sorry, our baby. In case you had forgotten, we made this thing, and now it’s our responsibility whether you like it or not.”
“And what if I don’t?” Don blurted out. Nina tried not to strike her partner once more, as she suppressed her anger, making her feel sick inside.
“Then you might as well not bother coming back from the store.”
“Fine.” And Don stormed out without another word. Even though it was sunny and warm, Don felt frozen inside. He knew he was just saying everything wrong lately and was hurting Nina. Maybe she would be better off without me, he thought. Knowing that he couldn’t just contemplate such life changing thoughts at the General Store, Don set off to find a quiet and peaceful place to think about Nina and his future offspring.

*

Dina knew she had to face reality, and after only forty minutes together, she begrudgingly got dressed and went to leave Ed’s. “Are you okay?” Ed asked, as he tried to say goodbye to Dina.
“I’m better than okay, you really don’t know how much you’ve helped me.”
“What does this mean for us?” Ed asked, wondering about Dina’s husband.
Dina looked at Ed but was overcome with sadness. “I can’t leave him. I’m sorry.” Dina replied.
“But do you still love him?” Ed queried. Dina hesitated and wondered whether she should be honest with Ed.
“Maybe not... But that doesn’t mean I love you either, I’m sorry Ed.”
“It’s okay, I kind of felt that you didn’t.” Ed sighed, as he tried to mask his disappointment. She leaned in for a kiss, but Ed let go of Dina, in fear that if they kissed, he wouldn’t let her go. “Well, goodbye.” Ed offered, and gave a friendly squeeze on Dina’s arm instead. She immediately left, seeing Ed try to hide his disappointment was too much for her and she feared that if she didn’t go now, she would never leave. How could I still not love him, she thought. After everything she knew, everything she felt. They had created a life together, yet there was still something that made Dina unable to confess her love for Ed. Rushing home, Dina thought she knew what it was.
“Mortimer!” she bellowed out into the courtyard of the Goth’s spacious hacienda. It was what she had read this morning - Mortimer’s will, stating that unless she and Mortimer had a child, she would not receive any inheritance when he passed away. If she gave in and left Mortimer for Ed, then she would have to raise her child without any of the fine things she had always hoped to be able to give her children, and the whole town would know she was a cheat. But if she stayed, then she and her baby got everything... except Ed. But that wasn’t all bad. She got Mortimer, and despite what she told Ed, she was convinced that a part of her loved him dearly.
Walking out into the courtyard, Mortimer placed his hands on his hips, expecting another argument. “Back for round two, I see.”
“What? Oh no, Mortimer, that’s not what I want. I’m sorry I invaded your privacy this morning. It was a terrible thing to do and I just want to apologise and move on.” Mortimer was shocked, and smiled in disbelief.
“So you’re not angry?” Mortimer asked.
“How can I be angry when I know what I know now.” Dina grinned.
“What are you talking about?” Mortimer asked again.
“Mortimer, it doesn’t matter. All that crap doesn’t matter now.” Dina started. Mortimer looked confused and worried. Dina paused for a while, enjoying making Mortimer sweat. He had hurt her this morning and she wasn’t forgiving him that easily. Finally accepting enough was enough, Dina clasped her hands together and broke her news to Mortimer. “Mortimer, I’m pregnant.” She said. Mortimer’s mouth opened in shock.
“We’re going to have a baby.” Dina added.
“We’re going to have a baby?” Mortimer repeated. “You’re pregnant.” He added, pointing at himself then Dina. as if trying to add two and two together in his mind.
“I’m pregnant!” Dina shrieked, as she cried out with joy. “We’re pregnant.” She said, as she held Mortimer close. “You’re going to be a daddy and we’re finally going to have a complete family.” Dina said. Finally hearing the truth out loud, a tear fell from her eye.
“Dina. You’ve just made me the happiest man in the world... again!” Mortimer cried. Unable to contain herself anymore, Dina jumped into Mortimer’s arms and hugged him with all her love. And now she had two times as much to give him. But something inside of her knew that this wasn’t how it was supposed to be, that the man she was hugging was not who Dina claimed him to be. Dina could feel that part of her recoil, as she poured her heart out to Mortimer. As much as Dina said it, and as much as she may have believed it, Mortimer was not the father of her baby. And knowing that, made Dina terrified she would never be able to devote herself entirely to Mortimer. There would always be that connection with Ed. Dina just prayed she could ignore it.

*

Don had been gone now for almost an hour, and it was time for Nina’s shift at ‘Deedee’s DVD Depot. It wasn’t her ideal job, but it was necessary, now that she and Don had the upkeep of a giant house to themselves. Having only five hours of sleep and being pregnant was not a good combination. In fact, Nina felt terrible. As she rushed for the carpool, Nina couldn’t stand the nausea anymore and instead rushed from her bedroom to the toilet. Nina fell forward and threw up violently. In a few seconds, it was over, and she shakily stood up. Breathing deeply, she wiped her mouth and slowly made her way down to the car. But something wasn’t right. As soon as Nina reached the stairs, her vision became blurry and her feet turned to jelly. Slowly edging one foot in front of the other, Nina tried to make it down the steps... but her legs buckled, and before she could reach out for the banister, her eyes rolled back into her head and she fell unconscious. Nina sailed forward and crashed onto the stairs, though it was eerily silent. Nina simply rolled down the stairs, as if it were a sloping hill. But it wasn’t, it was a wooden staircase that bruised and broke Nina when her body slammed into it. Almost doing a complete somersault, Nina’s body fell all the way down and hit the polished wood floor of the Caliente mansion with a thud. Bruised and unconscious, Nina’s only help unknowingly gave up waiting and drove off to work without her. Again, the house fell silent, as Nina laid perfectly still at the bottom of the stairs... slowly drifting deeper and deeper into unconsciousness.

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