Loving With A Heavy Heart Chapter 75
74 Always Stay By My Side
As Elle entered the hotel where Tae was holding their reception, just five minutes away, Adam was doing the same. Unbeknownst to the pair, both of their companies were holding their annual party on the same night.
While Elle entered the venue looking youthful and beautiful, Adam looked handsome yet stern. On the outside he maintained a professional and strict appearance but on the inside he was on the verge of exhaustion. Adam couldn't remember the last time he had gotten a good night's rest. The past few days had gone by in a blur. He also felt a pang of guilt.
He hadn't been able to see Elle at all in the past few days. He wanted to meet her in person, and didn't want to discuss their relationship over the phone, but before he knew it weeks had gone by and he had yet to see her. She was bound to be mad at him; he was mad with himself.
Adam mechanically greeted various important guests at the banquet hall where MK's annual reception was being held. This was the last party of the season for both him and his company. As long as he could get through tonight he would finally have the opportunity to go see Elle. With that thought in mind Adam powered through his fatigue.
A few hours passed and both events were going well. After an hour or so of tedious socializing the regular dull speeches were made. During most of the event Elle sat at a table stuck in a discussion with one of the board members of the company. At first Elle thought it was a breath of fresh air to be out of the awkward atmosphere surrounding her family, but after listening to the old man drone on for over half an hour Elle was starting to get a headache. Finally, the food was served and Elle was given a reason to rejoin her father's table.
"It's been an interesting discussion Mr. Wilson. You've given me a lot to think about but I should rejoin my family now." Elle said, politely excusing herself.
"Yes of course, you should go, we can discuss later." Elle gave him a warm smile, trying her best to contain her dread.
She made her way back to her family's table but stopped short. Elle's heart dropped to her stomach. In front of her the father she loved so dearly when she was younger, the father she had waited up for every night for the past few days, was happily enjoying a meal with his new wife and son.
Elle was reminded of the stabbing pain she would feel when her father first brought his new family to the house. Of course he was allowed to be happy, but could he not be happy with her? Could he not even wait for her to begin their meal? Did he not notice her absence at all?
Elle was standing just a few feet away from the table. Her father was looking at Jacob, but if he turned his head just slightly he would surely notice her.
'Just one look.' Elle thought to herself. 'Just a single glance and I will forgive everything. I'll call you father and give you all my love if you just give me one hint that you care.'
But he didn't look at her. Elle watched as he laughed with his family, never once noticing her.
'I really am a fool.' She thought to herself miserably, willing her tears not to fall lest one of the guests noticed.
Every time she told herself not to trust in her father and yet she would eventually fold and believe in him just to be let down again and again. She was a fool, a fool who never learned her lesson. But tonight she did. She had finally had enough. Elle turned around and made her way to the restrooms to freshen up. As she did she made a promise, from this moment on she would only trust in herself.
Elle stood in front of a mirror in the restrooms. The girl in the reflection looked lost; her wide eyes had no emotion reflected in them. Elle took deep even breaths and then put on the best smile she could muster before returning to the hall. She didn't dare more a muscle in her face, she had the strange feeling that if she let go of her smile now she wouldn't be able to find it again.
She sat at her father's table, not bothering to look up at him as she joined them. She focused on the plate of food in front of her instead, keeping her smile on even as she ate. After a few minutes her cheeks and jaw began to ache from holding her face in such a stiff position, but even then Elle continued to smile, simply ignoring the pain both in her sore cheeks and in her heart.
After the meal was over the guests continued to socialize while they waited for Elle's father to make the announcements of what was to come for the company. Elle looked around the room at all the guests and knew she couldn't endure another round of mindless socializing. She had to get out of there.
Elle discretely gathered her things and slipped out into the hotel lobby. As she sat down in the lobby's seating area Elle hesitated for a moment before boldly making a phone call.
"Hello." A familiar gruff voice answered.
"Hey." Elle greeted tiredly. "I know you're busy but I wondered if I could see you tonight."
"What's wrong?" Adam asked, sensing her mood through her voice.
"I'm just a bit tired. Tae is having their annual party tonight but I really want to get out of here."
"Where are you right now?" Adam glanced down at his watch and then at the hundreds of guests in front of him. He had completely forgotten that Tae was having their party that night too.
Elle gave him the name of the hotel she was at. "I'll be there in ten minutes." Adam said. He then made his way to his parents and silently informed them he would be leaving.
"Where are you going?" His father asked sternly. "You still have to speak."
"Something more important came up. You can handle the announcements between you and David." Adam spoke and then left before his father could complain.
About ten minutes later Elle saw a pair of headlights pull into the hotel and Adam's familiar black Maybach waiting outside the doors for her.
She got into the car, surprised to find Adam in a tuxedo. Only then did she realize that MK must have been holding their event the same night. Since it wasn't announced to the public Elle hadn't realized they were on the same days.
"I'm so sorry." She whispered, her stomach sank from the feeling of guilt.
"Don't be." Adam said as he pulled out onto the streets. "Our event was practically over anyway." He lied.
Elle was tense at first, still anxious and upset over the events of that night. She thought Adam would just take her home but she soon realized that he was just driving aimlessly. Elle appreciated the silence and enjoyed the view of the streetlights against the night sky.
"Feeling better?" Adam asked when he noticed her finally relax.
"I don't know why, but when I'm with you everything else seems to just fade away. All my anger and my grief melts away to nothing." Elle answered with a melancholy tone.
"Then always stay by my side." Adam said in a low voice. Elle looked over at him with her eyes wide and her lips slightly parted with surprise. "I'll protect you, I'll do whatever it takes to make you happy, so be mine."