Chapter 140 Planning My Pregnancy
Yulia knew that Miles would not side with her, so she let go of his arm.
“Stella Johansson, you don’t have to fake it! You’re nothing but the daughter of a rapist!” She did not hold back on her attack.
“That’s enough!” Miles sternly rebuked Yulia to stop her from saying more.
In spite of the accusation hurled at her, Stella was very calm. “My father has confessed to me about his criminal background during New Year, so you don’t have to keep reminding me of it. No matter what my family background is, it is none of your business!”
Previously, the tension between Yulia and Stella had been bubbling under the surface, and they both knew it. But today, their war was finally brought out into the open.
Yulia knew that Miles would not help her, so she quickly changed her tone. “Mrs. Xenon, are you attending the photography exhibition to avenge your ex-boyfriend? Aren’t you worried that you’d make President Xenon jealous?”
When speaking, Yulia highlighted the words ‘Mrs. Xenon’ and ‘ex-boyfriend’ to remind Stella of her place.
Stella smirked and dismissed her. “This issue is between me and President Grant! You should stay out of it.”
Then, she turned around to leave. She figured that Audrey was probably in the darkroom because she could not see Audrey anywhere. Hence, she wanted to head over to find Audrey.
“Why did you do that?” Miles asked her from behind.
“President Grant, I wronged you, and I feel guilty for it. Of course, I would not want to see you surrounded by women like Yulia—they only know how to create discord.” When she addressed Miles, she looked at him with her head held high, showing no sign of affection for him.
After this event, I guess Yulia will not have the confidence to face Miles anymore. She always believed that Miles did not know that she had been raped.
Stella left them and went to look for Audrey in the darkroom. Inside, Audrey was peeking out furtively, asking, “Miles probably won’t see us here, will he?”
“Why are you asking?”
“Think about it: I sent your nudes to him, and he likely thought I did that because I got into a conflict with you. But today, we’re here at the exhibition as besties. He might find out about our plan.” Audrey stole another glance outside, worried that Miles would enter the darkroom at any minute.
Stella thought over Audrey’s words and decided that it was a valid concern.
March was a month full of sunshine. However, a downpour happened on a gloomy afternoon. At first, Stella had planned to stay in the factory, but Zachariah said he had prepared a gift for her, his ‘Mommy’, and persuaded her to come home.
In the past, Zachariah loved to call Stella ‘Mommy’ because he was close to her. Although that embarrassed her sometimes, it made her happy. Now, when she was legally his stepmother, she suddenly felt awkward and weird when he did the same thing.
Still, in order to keep up the act, Stella would answer him whenever he called her ‘Mommy’.
Matthew told her that he would pick her up on his way home from work because Zachariah had told him about the gift.
Walking out of the factory, Stella saw that the rain had gotten heavier. Unfortunately, she had no umbrella in her office because she had recently moved in and did not bring all her personal items over.
Her factory was not spacious. One could see her office from the entrance of the factory.
Outside, Miles’ car was parked some distance away. Seated grimly in the car, he observed Matthew’s car driving into the grounds of the factory.
As he was smoking, he saw Stella run out of her office and hop down the stairs, all the while holding a piece of wood on top of her head.
Matthew had been waiting for her at the entrance. When he saw her drenched look, he hurriedly walked up to her and shielded her from the rain with the umbrella with great concern. The two seemed to be discussing something.
Miles scoffed and forced a bitter smile.
“Did you forget about your condition? How could you not use an umbrella? What would you do if you catch a cold?” When Matthew saw her in the rain, he could not help but think of her past surgery.
“It’s nothing. I was only under the rain for a while.” She smiled and got into his car. “I wonder what Zachariah is going to give me tonight. I look forward to his gift. Do you know anything about it?”
He smiled back at her and shook his head. “No, I don’t.”
They took their seats in the car, and Matthew soon drove them out of the factory. In the middle of the heavy rain, he did not spot Miles’ car parked by the roadside. As for Stella, she was busy guessing Zachariah’s gift for her and missed Miles’ car as well.
They sure look like lovebirds. Miles smirked coldly at the sight of the couple.
When they got home, Zachariah told them that he had created a drawing at school as a gift for Stella. The title of the drawing was ‘My Family’.
Then, he proudly showed Stella the drawing. Although she could tell that he had drawn some human figures, she could not identify the subjects. He had drawn four figures on the paper, which he labeled as ‘Daddy’, ‘Mommy’, ‘Zachariah’ and ‘little brother’. Upon seeing that, Stella immediately got an idea of the drawing.
“Why is there a little brother? Since when did you have a brother?” Matthew was confused by the drawing while Stella stared intently at it as she drowned in her sorrows. The drawing reminded her of the child she had miscarried, the final child that she had carried before she was diagnosed as infertile. She felt pained whenever she thought of the lost child as Miles remained in the dark about the entire incident.
She covered her mouth to muffle her sobbing, but her abnormal behavior had attracted Matthew’s attention.
I’m only twenty-six this year, but I have lost two of Miles’ children. Indeed, I am very talented in masking my pain, especially when it comes to my miscarriages.
Zachariah asked her what was wrong, whereby she dismissed his concern and merely explained that she was reminded of some sad events in her life. Being the child he was, Zachariah pressed on about the ‘sad events’ that she was talking about before Matthew schooled him for overstepping the boundary.
“It’s fine! That’s my problem anyway. Why are you yelling at the kid? Zachariah, I was thinking of the baby that I lost.” She sniffled, her eyes swollen and red.
Zachariah fell silent for a while and asked, “Was the baby yours and Uncle Miles’?”
It was that remark that caused her to break down. She could not explain why she cried so hard until she could not breathe.
“Stella, if you’re feeling down, you should take a rest upstairs. I think you seem tired today. Zachariah isn’t very sensible. I’ll teach him a lesson later.”
Stella caressed the little boy’s head and said, “This has nothing to do with him. I was the one who should be blamed.”
Feeling worn out, she decided to call it a day and went upstairs to rest.
When she was gone, Matthew gave his son a careless flick on the forehead. “Next time, don’t ask things that you aren’t supposed to ask. Never mention Miss Stella’s child in front of her again.”
“But shouldn’t I be calling her Mommy?”
Matthew let out a small sigh at Zachariah’s innocent question.
A few days later, Stella planned to go to Murdough. At night, she told Matthew about it, whereby he offered to send her to the airport. Since her flight was not at peak hour, there would barely be any traffic on her way there. Considering that going to the airport would be a detour for Matthew, she decided to hail a cab instead. She did not have any huge luggage case—only a duffel bag. In the end, he agreed to her decision.
Matthew and Stella did not purposely keep each other at arm’s length since their wedding. It was more like a realization on Matthew’s side. Ever since he understood her undying love for Miles, he had not taken any step closer to her. There was no chance for him anyway, so he did not want to get too close to her.
Last night, she had cried for a long time over her lost child and, as a result, woke up late the next day. She lazily washed her face, put on her makeup, and put on a pair of white strappy ballerinas before heading out to the airport. She had forgotten how difficult it was to hail a cab in the neighborhood. Upon realizing that, she had no choice but to walk out of the neighborhood.
While walking, she could not help but recall how Miles had always driven her to the fashion shooting site.
The scene made her think of her lost love, and she was immersed in sadness once more. In her sorrows, she did not realize that she had walked for a long distance. Even then, the few cabs that passed by did not stop for her at the location.
She walked all the way to the main road and waved her hand anxiously. If she could not hail a cab, she would soon miss her flight.
Miles happened to drive past the area at a slow speed. When he saw her standing by the roadside with a worried look, he pulled over and rolled down his window to ask, “Where are you going?”
“Murdough.” She lifted her wrist to check the time on the watch. The airport was half an hour away, and she could make it if he drove her to the airport speedily. “Do you have time? If you’re free, do you mind sending me to the airport?”
Stella always reminded herself to keep her composure no matter how she ran into Miles. Her expression should never betray her feelings for him. Due to her mental preparation, she looked quite calm when she saw him again.
After she got into his car, she let out a huge sigh and checked the time again.
She looks like she’s in a great hurry.
Just now, when she was waiting for a cab, her shoe strap had loosened, so she bent over to strap them on once more. Miles had a sharp observation, and he noticed that she had stopped wearing high heels. She wore loafers at the photography exhibition, a pair of flat-heeled shoes at the factory, and she still wore a pair of flat-heeled ballerinas today.
He could not help but ask in curiosity, “Why did you start wearing flat-heeled shoes?”
In his memory, she had always worn high heels every day. Their shoe rack was full of her high heel collection. Once, she told him that she wanted a change of style, and she went for flat-heeled shoes. However, that only lasted a few days before she went back to her beloved high heels.
She was taken aback by his question but soon replied nonchalantly, “I’m planning my pregnancy.”
Miles’ expression froze, and his fingers clutched the steering wheel tensely. “When we were together, you did not seem to care about that.” His words reeked of jealousy.
“Well, I’m married now. The next step, naturally, is to prepare for my pregnancy.”
He clenched his teeth and remained silent throughout the journey.
Soon, they reached the airport, upon which she hurriedly hopped off to rush into the departure hall.
When Stella came home a few days later, she found Matthew seated on the sofa and looking as if he had something to say. After some consideration, he finally blurted out, “Stella, I know that I’m not in the position to say this to you.”
“What is it? Just tell me.” This trip to Murdough was fruitful because she had received a few business orders. She was glad to be making money.
“Miles… seems to have started blind dating,” he casually informed her.
She was hanging her clothes, and her arms stopped mid-air after hearing the news. However, she quickly smiled and replied, “He’s been going on blind dates? That is exactly what I wish to see. If he’s happy, I’d be relieved too.” Then, she hurriedly shuffled upstairs into her room.
“Stella, don’t you feel upset at all?”