It’s almost becoming a game.
Getting angry with the incessant caller, annoyance takes over, and I answer the call, “Stop calling me. I’m not giving you a bloody quote, so just piss off, will you?”
I hear a deep chuckle come down the line. A chuckle followed by a voice…a voice that I recognize immediately.
“Still a firecracker I see.”
A shudder runs down my spine. “P-Paul.”
“It’s been a long time, India. I’ve missed you.”
I feel myself retreating back to the girl I used to be.
“W-why are you calling me? I have a restraining order. You aren’t allowed to come near me.”
“I’m not near you, India. I’m a few hundred miles away. It never stated that I couldn’t call you.”
“It did. You are not allowed to contact me in any way. No calls. Emails. Nothing.”
He lets out another chuckle. “I must’ve overlooked that part.”
“I’m ending this call now. And don’t ever contact me again.”
“Your office was broken into a few days ago, right? Terrible. You can’t trust anyone nowadays.”
My blood freezes cold. “H-how do you know that?”
“Because I was the one who broke in—well, not me, of course. I can’t leave Manchester, thanks to that dastardly electronic tag. I had a friend help me out.”
“I’m calling the police.”
“Call them and tell them what? That you’re in a relationship with a former patient.”
I gasp. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“You know exactly what I’m talking about. Leandro Silva. He was your patient, and now, you’re fucking him. Trust me, I of all people know that’s not right, India. And Silva? You’ve really gone up in the world.” He lets out a slow whistle.
“You have no clue what you’re talking about.”
“Sure I do. I have your laptop. It’s all here, all the gory details on Silva’s pathetic PTSD, your treatment for him. Funny though, I must have missed the part where it said part of your treatment was to fuck him better.”
My whole body is cold. “You’re despicable.”
He laughs. “I saw pictures of you with him in the paper. God, India you look even more beautiful now than did thirteen years ago. But I did wonder how you’d managed to meet someone like Leandro Silva. I mean, it’s not like you spin in the same circles. I wanted to know more about you. So, I had your place broken into. It was just my good luck that Silva was there on your laptop. All his pathetic story written in black and white for me to read. Because if I hadn’t gotten anything from your office, then I was going to have your house done over properly until I found something, but I didn’t really want to upset my son with a break-in like that.”
“He’s not your son!” I yell down the phone.
“He’s mine, India, and don’t you fucking forget it. My blood runs through his veins.”
“Your blood might, but he’s not yours, and he never will be.”
He lets out a maddening laugh. “You’ve done well for yourself. I want to know all about you and Jett.”
“How do you know his name?” I whisper. I never told him. I kept Jett far away from him.
“Come on, India. It wasn’t hard to find out. He’s into football and Formula One, right? Guess it helps that you’re fucking a Formula One driver.”
“Screw you,” I bite.
He laughs again. “And you kept my book, the one I gave you. That really touched me, India.”
I freeze still, my breath catching.
“Do you remember when I gave it to you? It was right after we’d made love for the first time at my place. We were lying in front of the fire, wrapped up in that blanket you loved. I wanted to give you something of mine that I treasured because you’d just given me something important.”
“You mean, my virginity? The one you took when I was fifteen years old! I don’t need a trip down memory fucking lane, Paul. How do you know about the book?”
“My friend found it in your little box of memories while he was snooping around your house. I told him to leave it on your bed. A little reminder of me. I really don’t like being in a box, India. I’ve spent the last thirteen fucking years in a box!” He yells, losing his cool.
His anger has me recoiling away from the phone. I hear him blow out a breath.
“My time in prison…it was your fault, India. You owe me.”
“I owe you nothing. You went to prison because you like to manipulate and groom vulnerable young girls into having sex with you.”
“You were never vulnerable, and I sure as hell never groomed you. You were up for it. Couldn’t get enough of me, if I remember rightly. Always begging me to have sex with you.”
“You make me sick.”
He gives a vile sounding laugh. “God, I have missed you, India.”
“I haven’t missed you. Honestly, I haven’t thought of you since the day you were sentenced in court and I watched with relief as the police led you away. Now, tell me what you want because clearly you want something.”
There’s a slight pause before he says, “I want money.”
It’s my turn to laugh. “I don’t have any, and even if I did, I wouldn’t give it to you.”
“Your boyfriend is loaded. Net worth around a hundred and fifty million, according to Google. I’m sure he can spare the money. It’ll pocket change to him.”