“Gina, when was the last time that you and I were intimate?” Matt asked.
“I don’t remember the last time we had sex but–“
“Intimacy doesn’t always have to involve sex.”
“Well, how do you expect me to be intimate with you after you accused me of having a thing for Joel?”
“You do and I’m not the only one thinks so.”
She stiffened. “Who else thinks so?”
“Kira’s niece?” Gina scoffed and shook her head. “I’m not surprised. She’s always looking for an opportunity to malign me.”
“Now, why would you say something like that about her?”
“Because it’s true. She doesn’t like me and do you know why?”
“Maybe it’s because she can see that you have a thing for her Uncle Joel.”
“I don’t care what she thinks she sees. She doesn’t like me for another reason.”
“And what is that?”
“She has a thing for you, Matt.”
“Oh, don’t be ridiculous, Gina.”
“I’ve seen the way she looks at you. You don’t notice because you’re too busy watching how I interact with Joel.”
“You’re mistaken about Mel and I think this is just an attempt to digress from a matter of utmost importance. We were discussing intimacy between you and me. Sometimes, I feel like we are two strangers living under the roof. Don’t you care about our marriage, Gina?”
Her mouth tightened. “Of course, I do,” she snapped. “Things were fine between us until you started insinuating that I have feelings about Joel.”
He sighed. “That’s where you’re wrong. Things have always been the way they are now between us. You couldn’t have the brother you wanted so you settled for me. You wanted to be in Joel’s life somehow and what better way to do that than to marry me? It was foolish of me to marry you knowing how you felt about him. Nothing has changed over the years. You’re still carrying a torch for him and our marriage is suffering as a result. And, to make matters worse, another child is on the way.”
“Are you sorry that we’re going to have another child?”
“I should ask you that question. I can’t shake the feeling that you weren’t happy with the first pregnancy and I was concerned about how you would be towards the child but when Cameron was born, your maternal instincts kicked in. And I must admit that you’re a good mother, at least.”
“Are you implying that I’m not a good wife?” she demanded.
“I think you would be a good wife to someone else–“
“You mean Joel.”
“Oh, this is hopeless,” she muttered getting up from the table and walking over to the window. She stood with her back to him staring at the snow-covered hedges.
“You’re right. This is hopeless,” he said quietly before he turned and walked out of the room. He went into the living-room and grabbed his keys.
Gina watched as he reversed out of the driveway and drove away. She had no idea where he was going or when he would be back. Things had gotten strained between them and it was because of Joel. She still had feelings for him but there wasn’t anything she could do about them. A part of her felt guilty for how she felt about Matt who had been such a good husband to her and another part of her resented him because he wasn’t Joel.
She placed her hand on her stomach. This was going to be the last pregnancy. Upstairs at the bottom of her underwear drawer, was a pamphlet about Permanent Birth Control for Women. She was going to have her tubes tied right after giving birth.