After spending such a wonderful time in Buenos Aires and Montevideo with Chioma, it was tough going back to work. Right now, he wished that they were relaxing on the beach in Montevideo after a swim. It had been a beautiful day and the beach was almost deserted. They spent the entire day there and then left for Buenos Aires in time for dinner.
On their last night in Buenos Aires, they went to Tango Porteño where they enjoyed a enjoy a tango dinner show. It was an unforgettable experience. “Why don’t you and I take tango lessons at the London Tango Academy?” Chioma suggested as they sat at the back of the taxi, heading back to their hotel.
He stared at her. “Are you serious?”
She laughed. “Of course, I’m serious.”
“The tango is a very sensual dance.”
“And it’s romantic, passionate and intense too. It’s perfect for us.”
“Oh, you think so, do you?” He reached for her hand and raised it to his lips.
“I think they offer online and in-person classes at the London Tango Academy.”
“How do you know this?”
“Last year summer, one of my co-workers and her husband took tango lessons at the academy. She said that they were great and encouraged me to take lessons too.”
“Which would you prefer? The online or in-person lessons?”
“How about in-person? It would be fun to be among other people who are learning like us.”
“This is what being in love does to a man,” he said.
“What do you mean?”
“I’ve agreed to take in-person tango lessons.”
She laughed. “It will be fun.”
They talked about that for the rest of the ride and when they got to the hotel, he escorted her to her room. Outside the door, they kissed and then, parted company. The following morning after an early breakfast, they headed to the airport to catch their flight back to London. And here, he was back in good old London with its hustle and bustle. It would take some adjusting after experiencing the laid back life in Buenos Aires.
And now as he walked into the office that Monday morning, he was greeted with smiles and questions about Buenos Aires, the people, the food, the culture and the weather. They thanked him for the postcard he had sent. He promised that he would tell them about the trip as soon as he had the time.
“It’s good to have you back,” Vera told him after she hugged him.
He smiled. “Thanks. I’m glad to be back because of you all but not thrilled because of the cold.”
“Yes. We imagined you soaking up that Latin sun while we were here freezing,” Stephen said dryly.
They exchanged a few more words and then, he excused himself to go to his office. Lots of mail and phone messages awaited him.
It was late afternoon and he was getting ready to leave the office when Ruth walked in. He was startled to see her. “What are you doing here?” he asked, his displeasure evident on his face.
“Isn’t it obvious?” she countered as she walked over to the two chairs opposite his desk. After draping her coat over one and setting her handbag on the seat, she sat down on the other. She crossed her legs and attempted to appear more relaxed than she was. Her heart was racing and it took all of her will power not to throw herself at him. She loved the way he looked in the black shirt, blue and black tie and black trousers. Desire surged through her as she imagined them at his flat and him not wearing anything. “Dushan…”
He glanced at his watch. “Look, I really don’t have time to talk to you right now.”
“When will you have time to talk to me?” she demanded. “At first, you ignored my calls and then you blocked them. Why are you doing this to me?”
“It’s over between us, Ruth. I thought I made that very clear the last time we saw each other.”
“It isn’t over for me.”
“I don’t want you dropping by my office anymore.”
“I waited until everyone had left.”
“And I want you to stop calling the office. Wendy, the receptionist said that a woman called but didn’t want another broker to help her and she didn’t leave her name. I suspected that it was you.”
“It was me. She told me that you were away on vacation.”
“Did you go to Buenos Aires alone?”
“No, I went with my girlfriend, Chioma.”
Jealousy flashed in Ruth’s eyes. “Your girlfriend?” she laughed caustically. “Don’t make me laugh.”
“I fail to see the humor in this.”
“I don’t believe that she’s anything more than a fling which you will soon get over.”
“This isn’t a fling.”
“I refuse to believe that it’s more. It can never come close to what you and I had–could still have.”
“Ruth, what you and I had is over. If you came here to try to convince me otherwise, you’ve wasted a trip.”
“No. I refuse to accept that it’s over between us, Dushan. We’ve been lovers for eight years. I can’t believe that you’re going to throw it all away because of this woman. Who is she anyway? And what kind of a name is Choma?”
“Chioma. And it’s a beautiful name. Beautiful like her.”
“There was a time when you thought that I was beautiful too.”
“That hasn’t changed.”
“You thought I was desirable too.”
“That has changed.”
“Why, because of her?”
“I know you, Dushan. You’re going to end up cheating on her just like you cheated on Evelyn.”
“When you get tired of her, Dushan, call me. I’ll be your lover again in a heartbeat.”
“No! I’m not going to cheat on her with you or with any other woman because I love her.”
Ruth’s face turned ashen. “You love her?” she almost choked over the words. It was as she had feared.
“Yes. For the first time in my life, I’m in love.”
“And-and is she in love with you?”
“She isn’t the only one. I fell in love with you that day when we met in the electronics store.”
“Ruth, go home to your husband.”
“I don’t love him, Dushan. I love you. I want to be with you, not him.”
“And I love Chioma and want to be with her.”
That hurt. It was as if he had taken a dagger and plunged it deep into her heart. “Dushan, please…”
“Please don’t call or visit me anymore. My life is with Chioma and yours is with your family. Goodbye, Ruth.” He stood there, waiting for her to leave.
Humiliated and heartbroken, she stood up, took up her coat and handbag and quickly left his office.
Source: London Tango Academy