Read Story: SEASON 1 EPISODE 4
GHOSTS OF THE PAST.
I glanced at myself at the full length mirror in my room. Guess, I’m ready to go.
“Must you go?” Maria said beside him, worried.
“I can’t keep cowering inside the house because the town thinks I killed my husband.” I replied tonelessly.
Maria snorted. “The mister drank like a clown and staggered out of the house to his car, and drove himself to his death. He killed himself.”
Maria forgot to add that Daniel beat me up in the room and left me half dead before he staggered off.
Or maybe she didn’t forget. She just doesn’t want to remind me of it.
Maria thinks I’ll be able to forget it all if it we don’t ever talk about it. My poor housekeeper.
I can never forget any of it. Not even in my dreams.
“Christine Raphael is my friend and she finally gave birth. It’s only normal that I go and congratulate her.” I explained to my housekeeper.
Maria hesitated, then the older woman nodded before she turned and left.
I stood a few seconds at the door of the Rapheals. From outside, i can hear the clattering of people, the bickering, the laughter. Then, I opened the door and entered.
People stopped talking and laughing. Everywhere became as silent as a tombhouse. All eyes at me.
I kept my head high and kept walking. I refuse to be show them that their judgemental eyes affected me.
“Astera!” Christine gasped, excited.
Seeing my friend, I smiled and relaxed. I walked to her, “Christine.” We hugged each other, “Congrats on the baby.”
“Thanks, my friend.” She beamed happily.
Conversation resumed and the atmosphere relaxed again. I released a breath I didn’t know I was holding.
I turned and my eyes landed on Stefan. My heart tightened in pain.
I should have known that he’d been here, because he’s a business partner to Christine’s husband.
He stared at me. I stared right back.
I refuse to back down or bend my head low. Although I was all jittery inside, I refuse to let Stefan see how much he gets to me.
I found an empty seat around the corner and lowered myself to it.
I stayed during the religious sayings and offering of gifts before I decided that I’ve had enough.
I looked around but I couldn’t see my friend Christine to tell her that I’ll be taking my leave. It won’t be fair that I just leave without informing her.
Let me just go and get some fresh air.
I got up and made my way outside. The first wave of fresh air hit me and I smiled widely to it. It’s not so suffocating anymore.
I searched for a secluded place where no one is walking through. I smiled when I found it.
The night sky seems very beautiful. I walked towards the flower and lowered myself to a pavement beside it.
I took a deep breath. Finally, some peace and quietness.
“You’ve always liked the night.” Came a familiar deep voice behind me.
My heart skipped several beats before I turned around to glance at Stefan. “You followed me out.” I said, not really asking a question.
“I can use some fresh air too. It is quite crowded in there.” He groaned.
The way I feel tonight, I don’t think I can appreciate a close contact with him.
The way people treated me in there…like a killer that needs to be shunned, made me feel so raw inside.
“Can you go another place, Stefan? Please.” I asked him softly. I don’t want to fight with him right now. I feel emotionally drained.
But Stefan took it as a rejection.
His gaze turned skeptical. “There was once a time when you couldn’t bear to be away from me. What happened to all those love you claimed you had for me?” He asked mockingly.
I turned away from him, lifting my face to the sky. I ignored him knowing that it will infuriate him. Stefan always hates being ignored.
Perhaps it’ll make him leave me alone.
But he didn’t.
“Can you stop ignoring me, Astera!?” He thundered, angrily.
The loud voice startled me and I quickly glanced at him in terror.
Raised voice….loud noises….I hate them so much.
Stefan didn’t notice because he was still so angry.
“You were the one who threw everything away! You were the one who destroyed us and you have the guts to sit down there and claim self righteous!” His voice raised and quite angry, as he took a step towards me.
I bolted up, backing away from him. Filled with fear and knee-deep terror.
Daniel….I can only see my late husband Daniel, angry as usual and coming to beat me up.
“No! Daniel, please!” I cried out, raising my hands protectively towards my face to block the blows I was sure is to come.