Chapter 137 I Don’t Love You Anymore
Unknowingly, Stella’s face was covered in tears. She could not even hear Korbin calling her to watch the New Year Night Live from the living room.
She was anxious earlier, but her mood had relaxed now.
On New Year’s Eve, Miles called her again, during which she professed that she missed him half-heartedly with a smile, concealing all the complicated emotions in her.
During the New Year, Yulia and Korbin paid a visit to her place. She was seated on the sofa, watching some TV programs.
She expected Yulia’s glee but chose to ignore it. Yulia was probably gloating because she had successfully driven a wedge between Miles and her.
After New Year, Stella went back to work, burying herself in fashion design to stop herself from overthinking, for she did not want to live in the worries of the past.
As usual, she went into Matthew’s company building, where Audrey was present. Audrey was either in the opposite building or staring at her from afar.
After New Year, Miles returned home and was picked up from the airport by Stella, who had put on a normal face.
When they met again, they hugged and kissed. Stella pretended that nothing had happened as she kissed him with her head tilted, telling him how much she had missed him.
He replied to her in a hoarse voice while hugging her with one arm. Days felt like years when they were separated. It was tough to imagine the torture of separation for a year.
This time, Stella did not say ‘I love you’ to Miles because she was fully aware of the events that were going to unfold down the road.
At that moment, her only focus was to put on a show with Miles according to the script until their relationship ended.
Sadly, Miles had taken their act too seriously, and similarly, she was hopelessly addicted to and obsessed with the act.
They took a cab home from the airport. Once they were home, Miles eagerly brought her upstairs to their bedroom. There, he immediately started planting aggressive kisses on her.
She knew that it had been a month since her miscarriage, so it was safe to have intimacy with him.
After their passionate session, she lay down on the bed with her shoulders bare, facing away from him.
His phone suddenly buzzed. Feeling tired, he leaned back on the headboard and scrolled his phone to find that Yulia had messaged him on WhatsApp with some photo attachments.
Beside him, Stella knew very well about the content in the message. After all, she had asked Audrey to send the photos to Yulia, knowing that Yulia would make a fuss out of the photos even if she did not know who the sender was. Yulia being herself, she would definitely forward the photos to Miles without verifying the truth because those photos would put her at an advantage against Stella.
The photos included candid shots of Stella playing Go with Matthew, their dinners, Stella standing with her eyes closed as Matthew picked a fallen eyelash away from her cheek, and more explicit photos. There were too many to count.
Stella had never understood the effort needed for a photo shoot until she had to do so. After her miscarriage, Matthew seemed to have cleared up his feelings for her and settled into a mentor role, occasionally taking care of her like a father or an older brother.
Since then, Stella had felt more at ease around him.
Miles went through all the photos sent to him and even zoomed out on the photos to check for signs of Photoshop. Knowing that these photos were from Yulia, Miles learned to be more cautious because he knew her tricks.
When he was done checking the photos, he frowned and took a quick look at her.
In the past, she had never slept with her back against him. She would normally face him, even snuggling close to his body.
He put away his phone and went to sleep without another word.
The next morning, Miles drove Stella to work without having breakfast at home. When they drove past Howard’s Bagels, she picked up some bagels and two cups of coffee. She got into the car and said to Miles, “Ma—”
His sharp gaze landed on her after hearing that. She noticed her blunder as well and hurriedly changed her words, “Man, it has been a while since you had these bagels, right? Eat them while they’re still fresh!”
What an awkward save!
But actually, it was intentional.
Miles was grating his teeth in hate. Instead of eating the bagel, he rolled down his window and threw it out into a trashcan.
“You didn’t want it? If you don’t like their bagels, you should have just let me have it,” she added as she pretended to overlook his anger. Her plan was to make him hate her as much as possible.
He sat in the driver’s seat with his lips pursed, seething in anger silently.
After that, Stella went to her factory. There was a lot of work waiting for her in the studio, but she could only space out. Smiling bitterly, she found her profound acting skills amusing.
After the New Year public holidays and Miles’ prolonged absence, there was an important meeting he had to attend with the company management. During the meeting, he smoked while reading the script for his speech. He was dismayed to find that he could not focus, so he finally requested a senior manager to take his place. Then, he stared blankly out of the window and smoked.
It was obvious what had happened behind his back in the past month.
In fact, Miles had never underestimated Matthew’s attractiveness, and he was aware of the fatal chemistry between two people who shared the same interests.
It only took one month for them to get together behind my back.
The next time Miles received another piece of evidence was after the meeting. This photo had trumped the previous ones, for it was a nude photo of Stella and Matthew.
However, the photo was not from Yulia; it was from Audrey.
This was also the result of a discussion between Stella and Audrey. They agreed that Yulia would publicize the nude photo and cause unwanted trouble. Therefore, the nude photo could not be leaked to Yulia to prevent any problem in the future.
In the photo, Stella lay on her side in the bed, her dark and luscious hair draped over her shoulders. She was wrapped up in a fur coat, her full b*****s showing. She was staring lovingly at Matthew, who was lying down in a similar position. Even though there was no contact between the two, their eyes were telling of their relationship.
The photo was a result of Audrey’s editing, drawing from her knowledge in photography. Firstly, she put on a camera lens suitable for video shooting. Next, she put together Stella and Matthew’s individual shots into one photo, which took her a lot of time.
However, with her persistence, she managed to get the result she wanted.
Step by step, they forced Miles into despair. Stella felt the same as well, but she was making a conscious choice to leave him.
Only when both of them were thrown into despair, Miles would break up with her and forget about her without any lingering feelings.
The moment she made up her mind, Stella suddenly felt confident about her understanding of Miles. This was a stark contrast to her past self, who was always confused about his innermost thoughts.
Firstly, she had spread the photos of her with Matthew through Yulia to give Miles some hints. When that was done, Audrey dropped the bomb.
As Audrey was Matthew’s ex-wife, she was understandingly unwilling to see Matthew with another woman. Everything was perfectly aligned, laying down a smooth path to a breakup with Miles.
As expected, Miles flung his phone in anger after seeing the provocative photo.
There must have been something between them since the beginning! If this was only a show, they would not have left a ton of evidence!
Miles shut his eyes hard as he sunk into despair.
At night, he went home and had a chat with Stella, but she seemed a little preoccupied. He casually asked her, “Who are you thinking of?”
“N-No one,” she replied.
When they went to bed, she did not show any interest in intimacy. She was tired from a full day of hard work at the factory and slumped down to rest.
He switched off the lights, climbed on top of her, and had his hands on her body.
Due to his aggressive moves, she felt pain between her legs. “It hurts, Miles!” she exclaimed softly.
“Did you say the same thing to him when you were under him?” he hissed into her ear. Next, the room fell silent except for the sounds of him thrusting into her.
She had wanted to ask who he was referring to but decided against it. She knew that he was talking about Matthew.
She had thought over her actions and felt conflicted about her cruelty toward Miles, but she knew she had no choice. Laying on the bed, she sobbed quietly from both the physical and emotional pain.
Her silent sobbing was frustrating to him. He could only derive a moment of pleasure from his aggressive thrusting. This was the most desperate and pitiful moment in his life.
When he was finished, he rolled over to the side and closed his eyes while she panted motionlessly on the bed. A while later, she said to him, “Miles, let’s break up.”
“Why?” He immediately interrogated her coldly.
“I don’t love you anymore!”
The curt reply from her was akin to a death sentence for him. Years later, he would still recall her cruel response. Although she suggested a breakup in a soft and hushed voice, her tone was full of determination.
In the years to come, every time he thought of her painful confession, his heart would harden a little more in defense. Over time, he would lose his capacity to love another woman again.
He smiled wryly at her. “You fell for that filthy man in the end, didn’t you?”
She argued softly, “He’s not a filthy man!”
“You’re still in bed with me, yet you’re siding with another man.” He flicked on the bedside lamp, lit a cigarette, and started smoking.
Stella had told him that she hated it when he smoked. However, he didn’t care about that anymore.
Tilting his head, he looked at her. She was still in the same position, but her face turned away from him after she smelled the cigarette smoke.
She did not even bother to advise him against smoking.
“Are you breaking up with me to be with him?” He extinguished the cigarette b**t in the ashtray.
She remained silent at his question.
He took another glance at her body again, his eyes fixed on her smooth and slender shoulders, her graceful neck, and her long hair that was tucked to one side—the side closest to him.
She was defiantly silent.
“I have picked up some clues in the past few days, and I think you knew what was happening. I wanted to bring this up when you came home, but I was afraid…” She turned around in his direction, placing her hands under the pillow.
“Afraid of what? That I’d kill you?” he asked.
“No, I…” Facing downward, she sounded muffled and weak. “I was afraid that you would deal with Matthew the way you dealt with Zane before. He’s definitely no match for you. I was worried that I’d cause him trouble, and I was scared of what you would do to him. You know, he gives me a totally different feeling. He’s like my mentor and my brother. When I’m with him, I feel—”
‘That’s enough! Stop!” he snapped at her before putting on his clothes and heading downstairs.