Chapter Eight.

Three days. Three very long, very difficult days she’d been married to AJ, and she was on the border of insanity.

She wanted to kill him.

She was a creature of habit; come home from work, take a relaxing shower, curl up with a good book and enjoy the silence.

AJ never shut up. All day long he ran his mouth, wether it be talking incessantly about the stupidest things, rambling incoherently, telling the stupidest jokes, or singing.

The singing. Amanda sighed. It was enough to break down every wall she had built up against him the past few days. Every time his raspy, melodic voice drifted to her ears, she shuddered. Without knowing, he was threatening those walls of hers, but the second she felt them crumbling, right when she was enjoying the singing the most, she sat up straight and concentrated on keeping those walls intact.

Then there was the physical contact. It drove her mad. He’d find any excuse to tap her on the shoulder, to come up beside her, anything at all, just to have them touch for even a split second. She knew he wasn’t being deliberate about it, either; he was being himself. She saw the way he and Sandra got along, always poking each other, always touching, always testing the other’s patience. She knew he wasn’t doing it on purpose, but it frustrated her.

What she dreaded most, however, were the nights. That’s when he was deliberate. That’s when he got under her skin. That’s when she would love to strangle him the most.

He’d insisted they share his bedroom. “Like a real married couple,” he’d said. Amanda wasn’t having it. She opted for the guestroom next to his, instead.

Until she discovered the ‘secret door’ connecting both bedrooms.

The second night there wasn’t a good one. AJ had gotten to her in the worst way with his ways, and the stress had her tossing and turning most of the night. Just when she’d felt herself drifting off to sleep, the bed sank behind her, and AJ immediately curled up to her, spooning her from behind.

“What are you doing?” she hissed quietly.

“Sleeping with my wife,” he’d told her simply.

Annoyed, she left the bed and went into another room. Not twenty minutes passed when, again, she felt his warm body pressed against hers, his warm breath beating against her skin.

She’d moved twice more before finally giving into sleep, and was not surprised when she awoke the following morning in his arms.

She’d gotten extremely angry then, but not at him. She was angry with herself. She’d felt him next to her, turned to face him, and smiled. She’d smiled, and that was indicative of her weakness. She’d almost - almost - admitted to liking the feeling, of enjoying the way he made her skin crawl. Well, not crawl, exactly. More like... tingle.

She’d realized that morning that she wasn’t half as strong as she would’ve liked to have been in this situation. That was when the walls went up. If she wanted to win this thing, she decided, and get her divorce, she had to be strong.

It was beginning to be harder than she’d initially thought.

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