Breaching the Contract(8)By: Chantal Fernando
“Wow” is all I can say. Tristan has good taste. Black-and-gray marble counters, all stainless steel appliances, and a modern vibe that I really like. The kids sit down at the white dining table with their burgers and fries, and I join them.
Logan’s eyes flutter shut at the first bite of his cheeseburger. “Yum.”
Laura stays quiet but finishes her food before anyone, so I know she secretly loved it.
“So how was your day?” I ask them, trying to make small talk. Another thing my dad always did with me, we’d chat about our days over our meals and tell each other everything that happened.
“Okay,” Laura tells me, shrugging. She arches her brow and says, “You never even told us your name.”
“Oh,” I say, taken aback. “I guess I didn’t. It’s Kat.”
Great, I just walked into their house and fed them food they aren’t allowed to eat without them even knowing my name. Good thing I’m not a real nanny; I’m failing as one. “Meow,” Logan says, making me laugh as I pop a fry into my mouth.
“How was your day, Logan?” I ask him, wishing I had gotten some soda to wash the food down. I wonder what Tristan has in his fridge.
“Good,” he says, licking the salt off his fingers. “We did some stuff.”
“Very explanatory,” I reply, standing up and heading to the fridge. When I open it, all I find is bottled water and juice. I grab the juice and three cups and return to the table. “So what do you guys usually do after school?”
“Homework, then music practice,” Laura says, taking a sip from her pink cup. “Then we get free time to do whatever we want.”
“Sounds fair. What instruments do you both play?” I ask, scrunching my burger wrapper up and placing it in the bag.
“I play violin,” Logan announces proudly. “Laura plays the viola.”
The violin and the viola are different instruments? Ha, I guess you learn new things every day.
“I guess it’s homework time then,” I announce, cleaning up the table. I might as well use this time to get some of my work done too.
Logan grabs on to my arm and hugs it. “I like you,” he tells me.
I smile down at him.
Maybe this isn’t so bad after all.
LOGAN IS PRETTY AWFUL at the violin, but I suck it up and let him play, with a smile on my face. Laura, older, with more experience, plays well and actually in tune, for which I’m grateful. I’m with them for about two hours before Tristan walks into the house, my Camry keys in his hand. I didn’t really feel comfortable driving the expensive dark blue Maserati, but he didn’t leave me much of a choice. Logan runs up to Tristan and hugs his leg, while Laura acts cool with a casual “Hey, Dad.”
Tristan lifts his son in his arms and hugs him, smiling wider than I’ve ever seen, and then moves to his daughter and kisses the top of her head. When he brings those blue eyes to me, however, that smile drops. Seriously, what did I ever do to the man?
“You can head back to the office to finish up any work you have. I left you a list of things I need done by morning,” he tells me, handing me my keys back.
No “Thank you.”
No “I know this isn’t in your job description, but I was in a tight spot and I appreciate it.”
Unbelievable, infuriating man.
“Yes, sir,” I reply in a dry tone.
“Do you have to go now?” Logan asks me, bottom lip pouting. “We were just about to watch Disney movies!”
I glance at Tristan to see the surprise on his face, his eyes widening as he looks down at his son.
“I can’t, buddy. I’ve got to get back to work,” I tell Logan’s cute little face. Sharing a grin with him, he threads his arm through mine and glances up at me like I’m the best thing he’s ever laid his eyes on.
“You’re quite cute,” I tell him.
“Will you come back and see me?” he asks, studying me thoughtfully. I notice he has little brown freckles on his nose.
“I’m sure she will,” Laura adds. “Dad’s always busy, so he’ll probably ask her to come get us again.”
My gaze snaps to Tristan, and I don’t miss the flash of pain etched in his expression before he masks it. I never thought about how hard it must be to be a working parent with a demanding career, but I see just how challenging it can be in his eyes right now.