Player: A Secret Baby Sports RomanceBy: Aubrey Irons
“This isn’t what it looks like.”
The Chanel clutch drops from my hands as I stare at my fiancé, standing in front of his office desk with the blonde woman’s legs wrapped around his waist.
‘It’s not what it looks like’? Because, what it really looks a whole lot like is my fiancé with his pants around his ankles and his dick in his secretary, about ten minutes before the firm’s annual gala.
“Seriously, Vince?!” My jaw drops as I stare at them, slowly shaking my head as neither of them even makes an effort to cover up.
Jesus Christ, he’s still inside of her.
The thought is nauseating, and my stomach feels like it drops as far as my clutch lying there on the floor.
“Babe,” Vince shrugs - sheepishly but in this ‘sorry, not sorry’ way that somehow makes the entire situation even more condescending.
“Really wish you’d knocked, Natalie.”
I bark out a laugh, feeling the floor sink under my feet. His secretary slaps at his arm, almost playfully as if he’s just said some sort of faux pas at a cocktail party.
Jesus, she hasn’t even bothered to cover up at all. Her shirt is still unbuttoned, one breast hanging out of her bra, and her legs still wrapped around Vince’s waist. I frown as my eyes land on the tattoo on her bare thigh and the bile rises in my throat as I read the words, “Daddy’s Girl” inked inside the heart.
Good lord, I quickly yank my eyes away, feeling ill.
“You wish I’d knocked?” I hurl at Vince, still shaking my head and trying to process what I’m actually looking at. “Well I wish you weren’t fucking your trashy secretary, Vince.”
“Uh, excuse me, honey?” The blonde bimbo hanging off his waist and pulling at his neck-tie - one I bought him, actually - wrinkles her nose at me. She shakes her head and makes a face as if I’m the one out of line here.
“Yeah, Natalie, let’s be civil here. There’s no need for that.”
My blood pressure spikes as the rage lances through me. “Are you fucking defending her?!”
Civil. He wants me to be fucking civil to the woman with my fiancé’s cock still inside of her, right in front of me.
“Babe,” Vince shrugs condescendingly again. “You know how things are.”
I feel faint. I feel like the world is spinning under my feet as I bring my fingers up to pinch the bridge of my nose.
“No, Vince, I don’t. Why don’t you enlighten me.”
A weasley little rat grin sneers across his face. “I’m a man of power, babe.”
Right, because getting a company handed to you by your crook of a father counts as power.
“I have needs.”
“He’s got needs, honey,” the girl parrots.
My eyes flare as I drag them back to her, perched on the edge of his desk. “What?”
“It’s part of the game, Nat,” Vince says casually, with this obnoxiously bored tone to his voice. He casually waves his hand. “You know that.”
“No, I don’t know that.”
I didn’t know that being a spoiled little trust-fund kid who loves bragging about his family’s thin mob connections gave you a license to step out on your fiancé with your fucking secretary like a damn movie cliché.
“I mean, you had to know this was a part of the deal,” Vince says casually, shrugging again. “You know, being how you are and all.”
I can feel the rage billowing up inside of me. “Excuse me?”
“You’re frigid, honey,” His secretary finishes for him, still sprawled across his desk smiling evilly at me. She pouts as she turns back and gives his tie a little tug. “And Vincey has needs.”
I’m going to be sick. I’m literally going to be sick right here on the carpet.
The room starts to spin around me as I reach out and steady myself on the doorframe, sucking in lungs full of air.
“Nat, you’re just-” Vince fucking shrugs again. “You are a little bit of an ice-queen sometimes.”
I need to get out of here.
“Fuck you, Vince,” I spit out, whirling around to leave. My eyes land on the group picture of us from the company picnic last year, and I suddenly feel my teeth grinding together as I realize the blonde currently on his cock is actually in the picture, smiling with her hand on his damn shoulder.
I pluck it from the shelf and smash it to the ground.
“Natalie, we’ve got the gala in twenty-”
“Fuck the gala, Vince,” I turn and spit venomously at him. “And I’ll be gone when you get home, by the way.”
He laughs. “Oh, what, you’re going to leave, Natalie?”
“Yes Vince, I’m going to leave.” I say it mechanically, reaching down to get my clutch from where it dropped to the ground when I walked in.
“Oh, like you’ve got any capacity to be on your own, sweetheart,” Vince hurls at me. But I’m already walking out of the office.
“I hope you realize you’re making a big mistake!” he hollers after me.
“And I hope you catch something from your little office slut that makes your dick fall off,” I hurl over my shoulder.
“Least I’m letting him use it, bitch!” I barely catch as I slam the door to his office shut and run for the elevators.
Tires squeal as I peel out of the office parking lot, away from the life that up until this very moment was ours. ‘Ours’ until I leave it shattered like that picture on the floor of Vince’s office.
And despite living it for the last two years, it’s never actually been ‘my’ life, anyways. It’s always been Vince’s life, with me as a permanent guest. One more piece of art or famous guitar bought at a charity auction to decorate the walls and corners of his life.
That feeling has always been a lingering, nagging thought in the back of my mind - one that’s always dug at me in a subtle way like a seed caught in the back of your teeth.
I’m furious as I roar down the LA freeway - at my fiancé of course, but mostly at myself. The betrayal hurts, but I have to wonder how I even got to this place, where I’m engaged to man like Vince Capra in the first place. I’m pissed because I know I should be pissed, but that’s the extent of the emotional response to walking in on him fucking his secretary. I’m mad, and I feel slighted, and cheated.
But I’m not heartbroken.
I know I should be - I know any woman in my situation should feel that wrenching pain in her chest after seeing that. But instead, I just feel like I lost something somehow. I feel like I lost my pride somewhere along the way. It’s like the final nail in the coffin of what my life was growing up into what it is now.
Because the truth is, I know exactly how I got to a place where I’m engaged to marry a man like Vince. I can literally hear my mother’s voice from all those years ago, when it all came crashing down. That voice, masked and dimmed by gin martinis and valium in the stuffy lawyer’s offices in the aftermath of my father’s sentencing.
“I told you you’d thank me for all of it someday, Natalie.”
Her pupils are out of focus as she fingers the row of white pearls around her neck like some sort of Tiffany’s rosary. They’re new, of course. The identical ones she wore before have long since been seized by the FBI as collateral evidence, along with the Malibu house, the Manhattan penthouse, both yachts, and the bank accounts, of course. Luckily for her and her predilection towards strands of expensive pearls and the lifestyle she’s become accustomed to, my mother has already been shacking up with Dad’s VP since week two of the trial.
Money does NOT buy class, by the way.
By “all of it”, she of course means all the grooming - all the “finishing classes”, all the private tutoring in everything from polite conversation to classical piano. The diet I’ve been on since I was twelve; the nose-job I had when I was sixteen.
And by “thanking” her for it, she means that I’m “prepared” now. I’m groomed, primped, and ready to marry off to some other reckless man with money, like her to my father, or his vice president after the arrest.
So, yes, that’s how I get to a place where I’m of course saying yes to a slick, moneyed, philandering, and lying prick like Vince Capra when he asked me to marry him. Because my life has been determined for me before I was old enough to know any better. Because my place as arm candy - as an accessory - has been predestined from three or four generations back of prim, shrewd, demure women of high birth.
My hands tighten to white knuckles on the steering wheel of the Bentley - Vince’s Bentley, that I’m allowed to drive - as the thought of my pre-determined fate gets my blood boiling. My mother would push this aside if she were in my shoes, I know that. She’d pour an extra finger of gin, maybe go on a shopping spree, and then compartmentalize the whole thing away. In fact, she did exactly that - many times, actually - when my father’s indiscretions with a secretary, or the nanny, or whoever else came to light.
“It’s different for men, honey,” she’d say, straightening her shoulders and holding her neck high. “It’s just different.”