Chapter 121 An Innocent Friendship
“Lili, don’t use your phone when we’re eating,” my dad said sharply.
I acknowledged his words and stopped typing, stuffing my phone back into my purse.
My dad must have been exhausted after his talk. After dinner, instead of chatting with Dominic like yesterday, he announced that he would go back to rest.
Before they left, we made plans to bring them around town the next day.
Dominic and I left for my place after that. On the drive home, Dominic got a call from Camille. I stewed silently in the passenger seat, acting like I was not there.
No matter how uncomfortable I felt about the situation, I made sure none of it showed in my expression.
Dominic was nothing if not a smooth-talker, appeasing Camille with barely a few words.
Once we got home, I took a shower and burrowed into my bed with my tablet.
I needed to get some work done on my comics. I had not drawn for two days, and my manuscript was due in a couple more days.
Before I got down to work, I suddenly remembered something. I set my tablet aside and sped for the living room, locating and swallowing a birth control pill.
I’ve got to remember to eat these from now on.
I returned to my bedroom and began drawing in earnest.
Dominic came in as I was absorbed in my work.
I stared at him for a few seconds before moving aside, leaving him some space to sit on the bed.
Instead of getting on the bed, Dominic snatched the tablet out of my hands. He pinned me down on the bed in the next instant.
Even as my body began responding to his touch, I stuttered in protest, “H-hey, let’s talk this through. Everything in moderation and all that, right? Don’t overexert yourself.”
His gaze darkened. “Is this your way of telling me that something’s wrong with my virility?”
I almost bit my tongue at his crass remark. Oh God, I did not think things through.
“No, that’s not what I meant. You’re great, you know, and everything’s fine. I’m always satisfied.” I was this close to barfing at my cloying attempt to butter him up.
Dominic was chuffed to bits at my praise. His features relaxed immediately.
Catching on to what little headway I had made, I added, “I’m just concerned because we had a late night. You didn’t get a good rest this morning, either. I don’t want you to exhaust yourself. Let’s sleep earlier tonight since we’ve got a full day ahead of us tomorrow.”
He scrutinized me with interest in his eyes.
I went in for the kill. “We’ve got a long time ahead of us. There’ll be plenty of chances in the future.”
His lips curved into a smirk as he said, “Fine. You’re off the h**k tonight for being exceptionally sweet.”
I heaved a sigh of relief. We’ll see about it next time.
“Get off, then. You’re heavy.”
Dominic remained atop me.
My heart began pounding as fast as a runaway horse. Is he seriously breaking his promise right now?
“I suddenly remembered that I had something to tell you. If you ever get involved with Nicholas again, I’ll make you pay.”
Stunned, I explained, “Nicholas and I are just friends.”
He pinched me viciously in response. Sucking in my breath at the pain, I yelped. “It hurts.”
A cruel smile greeted me, followed by a sharp bite on my shoulder.
I heard him continue, “You’re claiming to be just friends when you’ve slept together? I don’t care about your relationship with him in the past, but now that I’m in the picture, don’t you dare seek him out again.”
I frowned and muttered, “We were always friends from the beginning. I’ve never slept with him-”
Dominic tilted my chin toward him and stared intently at him. “What did you say?”
Initially, I planned to ignore his question. After some thought, however, I decided that it was in my best interests to be honest with him. He might be gentler toward me if he knows the truth.
Dominic was not a prude, and I had lost my virginity to him. Though he would not be surprised if I had slept with other men, I knew that he was a possessive man.
Somehow, I was confident that if he knew about the true nature of my relationship with Nicholas, he would be over the moon.
Won’t I have an easier time of it if he’s happy?
Hence, I confessed, “Nothing romantic has ever happened between Nicholas and me. I’ve never dated him, nor have I slept with him.”
As expected, Dominic was overjoyed. A wide smile appeared on his face.
His joy also revealed his selfish hypocrisy.
When Dominic told me to go to bed, I told him I wanted to draw one more panel for my comic. He must have been in a great mood since he agreed immediately.
It was a wonderful and uneventful night.
We got up early the next day, and I felt thoroughly recharged after a good night’s rest.
Since we had time to spare, I whipped up two bowls of instant ramen for breakfast. Dominic had always suffered from gastric problems, and I did not want him to go starving.
After breakfast, we headed to the hotel to pick up my parents. We toured several places of attractions in Lightspring and treated them to some local delicacies.
I could tell that my parents enjoyed themselves that day.
Rather pettily, I called Louis and gloated about how much fun we had had.
Louis flung accusations of abandonment at us through the phone.
Just then, Dominic stepped forward and grabbed my phone. He told Louis to visit Lightspring on his next holiday, promising to cover all his expenses.
That little brat was so happy he began calling Dominic his brother-in-law.
How I wished I could knock some sense into Louis’ head. How can he sell me out after a little bit of bribery from Dominic?
My parents stayed in Lightspring for five days. Dominic and I ferried them around town whenever my dad was not giving a talk.
Truthfully, I was bewildered. I wondered what sort of tale Dominic had spun to Camille, which allowed him to spend five days away without her calling him every five minutes to check in on him.
If it were me, I would have expired from separation anxiety. Though I was hardly a clingy partner, if my boyfriend spent five days away from me without a peep, I would go mad.
Dominic continued bunking with me for days after my parents had already left. I thought he would be gone by now, but he acted like a plant that had taken root and refused to leave.
One day, I was drawing while he was in the shower when reality came knocking in the form of a WhatsApp message.