One Dance with a Stranger: Excerpt 2

Her head was spinning.  Her headache had returned full force.  Her hands leaned against the table, weak and helpless.  Her legs felt numb and lifeless.  Yet she wanted to get up and run.  She had to get up.

“I’ve spent my whole life watching women make fools over him.  I really thought you could resist him Emily.  Do you want to hear what else he said?”

As soon as the circulation returned to her legs she would get up.  She would pack and leave immediately.  She wouldn’t stay another moment with these lunatics.  This whole situation was only a game between two brothers who obviously hated each other.

Shattering with complete anguish she finally tilted her head around to look at Wade.  He was stiff.  He looked alone and miserable and her heart stirred.  But he was not denying anything.  He looked into her eyes as though begging for forgiveness.  It was a sign of guilt.  She couldn’t forgive.  Her heart hardened.  She brought her hands up to unfasten his clasping fingers.  Digging her nails into his flesh, she flung his hands away.  Finally she could stand.  She did.

“I think you are both very, very sick men.”  She enunciated slowly, moving back into the house.  “I think you both have some issues only a physiatrist can help you with.  I’m happy I will never see either of you again.”

“Emily,” Janet spoke up quickly.  “Wade was drunk.  Please understand.”

“And that makes a difference – why?”  Emily didn’t even bother to turn. She opened the door and walked through the kitchen into the hall.

“Emily, wait,” Wade moved into the hall.

“Don’t touch me.”  She was proud of the ice in her tone.  She kept walking.  “Don’t you dare touch me,”

Her voice nearly broke.  She had to get away immediately.  He’d won his bet.  He had turned her into a whore with an ease that was frightening.  She couldn’t stay and pack now with him standing beside her.  She moved into the entrance hall instead.

“Where are my keys?”

“You’re in no condition to drive.”  Wade stood with his hands in his pockets.  “Please darlin’, let me explain.”

“Explain?”  Emily’s eyes narrowed.

She fought valiantly for control, welcoming the ice invading with steady thoroughness.  Soon, very soon she could be the Emily she had proudly become.  She would be Emily who didn’t love anyone and the Emily who didn’t need anyone.  She had no feelings inside.  She had no heart.

“Did you make the bet?”


“Did you say you could turn me into a whore?”

“Yes, but,”

“There are no buts darlin’,”

One Dance with a Stranger by Mary M. Forbes


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