Falling for my Neighbor

By: Lila Younger

All of it could have been manageable I think, if Jamie’s mom was my partner. But she declared that she’d suffered for nine months, and now it was my turn to take care of her. Don’t get me wrong; of course pregnancy was far more difficult on her than it was on me. But that didn’t mean it was okay for her to dress up every night and head out with her friends.

Maybe I could have forgiven her, maybe I could have kept going on if that was all of it. But one day, when I had Jamie asleep in my arms, her mother’s phone buzzed. I caught sight of a guy’s name, and then I caught sight of the text.

I saw red in that moment.

And this next part I’m not proud of, but I could only run on fumes for so long. I opened up her phone, and I scrolled through her texts. There were at least three guys she’s been juggling since Jamie was born.

But that wasn’t the kicker.

Nope. I went back, all the way back to when we first got together, because I had to know, if she was cheating back then. And of course, she was. But then I saw another conversation, mentioning Daniels Communications, and the throbbing pulse in my head grew.

It turns out that Jamie’s mother had gotten pregnant in the hopes of marrying into the Daniels family. There’s even a text where she brags about how she managed to do it without a pre-nup.

I was shaking with rage by the time I finished that text conversation. It explains so much. The only reason I didn’t do anything rash was because I had Jamie sleeping away in my arms.

Too bad the joke’s on fucking her. Because my grandfather, the one who started Daniels Communications, had a falling out with my dad, the firstborn son. Instead, the company was to go to me, but only if I completed my MBA. Grandfather wanted to make sure that I’d learn the value of a dollar by making my own way first and would be somewhat qualified to run Daniels Communications.

I never completed my masters, ironically, because of Jamie’s mother. I made enough after college to have my own place, and go out every weekend. And I liked the fact that nobody befriended me for the sake of money. I was a semester away from graduation when Jamie was born, and I put it on hold so that I could be there. But this explains so much about why she suddenly turned when I told her that there was no extra money to pay for the hospital bills.

Over the next month, I divorced her mother, gained custody, and made plans to move away from one of the biggest mistakes of my life. But no matter how she came about, I would never, ever, wish things turned out a different way because it led to Jamie.

I hug my daughter close to me again, pushing away the rage I still feel sometimes whenever I think of her mother. I can’t even say her name. Instead, I blow a raspberry, and listen to the sound of Jamie’s laughter.

Together we go downstairs and I ready a bottle for her. She takes a mix of solids and formula, although lately she’s decided she doesn’t want any of the former. I’m giving her the bottle when the doorbell rings.

“Must be your new babysitter,” I tell Jamie. “Let’s go meet her shall we?”

I hoist Jamie higher up and walk towards my front door. Vanessa looks surprised when I greet her, but then she smiles when she sees Jamie, a smile so pure and beautiful that everything about my past is momentarily swept away.

“Hi,” I say, “Vanessa right? How’s your backhand these days?”

She blushes. In the span of just a few years, Vanessa’s definitely grown up. She’s wearing a pink sweater and jeans, but they do nothing to hide her soft curves, a complete opposite to Jamie’s mother’s angular, stick thin body. I find myself drawn to Vanessa, the attraction so intense I want to crush my lips to her right there and then. I force the thought away, because the last thing I need is to stir up gossip in this neighborhood. Not with Sarah around. But damn, she’s sensual yet innocent, from those plush pink lips to her long legs. That old image of her? Erased entirely.

“Oh, I-I haven’t really kept up with tennis,” Vanessa says, the cute blush on her cheeks making my cock twitch in my jeans. “I wasn’t very good as I’m sure you could tell.”

“I think you had promise,” I say, and she turns even redder. “Anyways, come on in.”

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