“I can’t believe of all the places you could have picked, this is the place you chose.” He shakes his head, looking around, and I follow his eyes around the restaurant. I’m not surprised by his reaction. The place isn’t all that great to look at, but they have an all-you-can-eat sushi bar that makes the cheesy décor and questionable environment worth the risk of food poisoning.
“I love this place.” I shrug, picking up another piece of sushi, dunking it in my perfected mixture.
“I could have taken you to an actual sushi restaurant instead of a all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet.”
“And what? Pay fifteen dollars for a California roll, I think not.” Smiling, he shakes his head as I shove another piece of sushi into my mouth.
“Nut.” His face softens, and I feel mine do the same then shift in my seat and lower my voice.
“Isla came by the house this afternoon.”
Sitting forward, his eyes narrow, and he rumbles, “Why didn’t you tell me?” sounding pissed, and I feel my temper spark due to his reaction.
“Why didn’t you tell me?” I challenge him back immediately. “She told me she stopped by the office but you wouldn’t see her, so I know you knew she was in town.” I raise a brow, and his eyes narrow further.
“What did she say to you?”
“Nothing, she just wants you to call her mom. She said you haven’t been returning any of their calls. Why aren’t you talking to them?” I question, watching him closely, surprised by how angry he looks.
“You—” I know what he’s going to say before he speaks, and I point my chopsticks at him.
“If you tell me it’s not something I need to worry about, I will stab you with these,” I cut him off, snapping my chopsticks at him, and he grins then runs his hand through his hair.
“They were not happy about me marrying you.”
“So,” I shrug. “My family wasn’t happy either but they are slowly coming to terms with it. You have to admit they have a reason to be upset. You dated their daughter and were supposed to marry her. Instead, you married me in Vegas, and I doubt they even knew my name, any parent would be worried,” I mutter, picking up another piece of sushi.
“Isla’s gay. I was never going to fucking marry her,” he growls and I blink, staring at him in disbelief with a piece of sushi frozen an inch from my mouth.
“Pardon?” I finally get out, not sure if I want to laugh or scream at the ridiculousness of the words he just uttered in one sentence.
“She’s gay,” he repeats, and I point my chopsticks at him, flinging the piece of sushi across the room as I do, not even checking to see if it hit anyone.
“She is not,” I hiss, jabbing the wooden sticks in his direction then snap, “Dammit, give them back,” when he snatches them from me.
“She is, but she did not want to hurt her family or risk anyone finding out about her sexuality, so she asked me to help her when people started to get suspicious.”
“You can not honestly expect me to believe this garbage,” I mutter, looking into his eyes.
“It’s the truth.
“She told you she was a lesbian?” I ask, looking around to see if anyone is listening.
“Yes.” He nods, and I shake my head.
“Wow.” I rub my forehead, really wishing I could have a drink. “So what was your plan when you put a ring on her finger?” I grit my teeth, feeling anger swell inside my chest at the idea of them together.
“I didn’t put a ring on her finger.” His frown deepens as his jaw clenches tight.
“I’m sure. Let me guess, she proposed to herself?” I roll my eyes and his narrow.
“I didn’t know what she had planned. We were at her parents’ house for dinner and she announced our engagement to them, she already had the ring on her hand.”
“I didn’t want to hurt her parents, and I knew I could put an end to all of it as soon as I moved here.”
“You didn’t end things with her when you got here,” I point out, and his jaw clenches tighter.
“She needed more time.”
“I bet.” I nod in agreement, having no doubt that she needed more time to try and convince him that she was just confused, and not actually a lesbian. More time to make him see that they were perfect together and should really try to make it work. “I’m in love with you.” He reaches over and attempts to take my hand, but I pull back before he can grasp it.
His eyes fill with distress, and his nostrils flare as he growls low, “Do not fucking pull away from me.”
“You…” I close my eyes, trying to get my thoughts in order, but my mind is a complete mess. “I don’t even know what to say to you right now.”