His hands firmly gripped the steering wheel while the engine hummed steadily. "Tell me, Sky, where is home?" glancing at her, waiting for her answer.
She directed him to the route towards the resort. "What a coincidence? I'm also from that direction." Raf kept on shifting his gaze from the road to her as he kept on a light conversation. The streets were almost empty except for occasional cars driving by.
She suddenly felt a pang of guilt for performing this charade on him. As they talked more, and she learned new things about him, she realized her mistake. He seemed to be a genuinely good guy, just like Lindsey told her. Maybe she misjudged him, she concluded.
At that very moment, she wanted to tell him the truth about her, but something was stopping her. She began to wonder if she was starting to like him, but she knew it was too soon. She could not fall for that again. She had to be careful this time before she developed any feelings for another man.
She was not entirely sure if she was over Brad. Even if she only thought of him and missed him sometimes, she could not ignore the long relationship she had with him. She might still be in love with him.
Therefore, finding herself in another relationship was not the solution to get over him. It would only end up in a messier situation.
However, she wanted to get to know Rafael better, even if it was just finding a new friend on this island. As far as she could deduce, he was still clueless about who she was. She began to consider prolonging the charade until he finally discovered the real her and not the actress that everybody knew on the screen. She believed that she was a better person than what the news depicted about her.
"Yeah, been staying there for just a couple of days with my Aunt and Uncle." The lies kept filing up, but she had to do it for another few days if possible. She promised herself, after that, she would come clean.
"Who? Maybe I know them." Raf asked curiously.
She contemplated if she was taking this too far. Then, she finally decided that there would be no harm done. After she had explained all of this to Raf, and then he would see that although it started as a simple prank, her intentions were good. They would have a good laugh about it in the end. "Maybe you might know them. Gerry and Lindsey," she stated, hoping the indifference in her tone would give him the impression that she had no idea that they know each other.
"Really. I did not know that Gerry and Lindsey have a niece. I have known them all my life," Raf said, furrowing his brows, thinking deeply of what she said.
He stirred the car smoothly to another curve, taking them out of the highway and to the path towards the private resort. He did not ask for any further direction upon learning where she was staying.
"Well, I am a very distant relative," remembering what Lindsey said the other day when they were out together.
"Ah, ok. Then, if that is the case, welcome to the island, new neighbor. I live nearby their house," he explained to her.
They were almost near Lindsey's house, which was just across her villa. Raf was contemplating whether he wanted to invite her or let the night end just like that.
"Can I invite you for coffee at my place?" he asked as his need to see more of her finally won. "It's just over there," pointing to the big house along the narrow path at the other end of the road. "Promise. I'll take you back to your house after."
She looked at the house of Lindsey, noticing some lights were still on. It indicated that they might be up at this time. She decided to go along with his plan.
"Why not?" she agreed, avoiding being caught by Lindsey on her lie. Besides, she was not ready to let the night end yet.
They drove towards a narrow path, going to a secluded area. At the end was the front view of the house she only saw from the other side.
Stopping just in front of the massive door, Raf parked the car. She could see that this was a modern house, probably renovated only recently.
"Welcome to my home." Raf immediately helped her out of the car and into the interior of the house.
"Thanks. You have a lovely home," admiring the beautiful decorations, from the old masterpieces to the new modern furniture. It all blended beautifully.
"My mom used to live here, but when my dad died, she opted to move out. Mom felt haunted by the beautiful memories of my father." Raf took her to the kitchen, where he immediately put on the coffee maker.
"Well, I could easily see your mother's touch with the decorations and artwork." She stated based on her observation.
"Oh yes. Mom loved her art collections, but those are all gifts from my father. She had to leave it here for the time being." He made two coffees and served her a cup.
"They must love each other. Did you grew up here?" She asked, letting herself get comfortable in one of the stools at the kitchen counter as they drank their coffee.
"We had spent most of our childhood in this house before we went to boarding school." He told her as he sat in front of her.
She suddenly remembered that he had a twin who died, but she could not ask Raf about him. All she could do was wait if he would talk about him.
All of a sudden, someone familiar showed its cute paws and pounced on her. Barking loudly, Baxter tried to get her attention, to tell her that he was happy to see her again in their house.
She almost fell in her seat, but Raf was quick to catch her fall. He stabilized her by holding on to her arms. "Thanks," she said, managing to straighten herself, finding a few spills of coffee on her dress. However, something happened when she felt his hands on her arms. She felt a chill went thru her body as her heartbeat went to the roof.
She was fascinated by him, but she was not expecting that kind of reaction with a mere touch from him.
"Baxter, you have to stop doing that." Raf chastised the dog. Well, he felt the same way as her. There was something about her that kept him interested. His reaction to her did confuse him, but he decided to put it aside for the meantime.
"Whoa, easy there, big boy. It's nice to see you too," she said as she rubbed his head just under her ears and behind his neck, trying to shake off the unwanted feelings she was developing for this man beside her.
They started playing with Baxter and talked about his story. She learned that Baxter used to be a stray puppy when he found him on the street. Eventually, Baxter became part of the family, and the rest was history. After a while, they decided that it was getting late, and it was time for her to go home.
"As promised, I would take you home, but we have to go by the shore. I want to show you something first if you're up for it," he hesitantly said, as if he was afraid she was going to say no.
"I'm ok with that." She stood from her position excitedly and patted the dog to say goodbye.
He guided her to a wide glass door leading to the garden. She remembered this place so well, walking to the path where she already knew where it would lead her.
Would she ever be ready to tell him the truth? When she finally had the nerve to tell him, what would his reaction be? Would he be able to forgive her and take it as a joke as she initially thought?
Questions plagued her mind, but she would only get her answers when she finally did tell him the truth.
Every minute she spent time with him seemed to make her task even harder. The night was soon to end.