woman staring at farm house

woman and horseAfter eating her dinner, Stella pushed her plate away and looked up at Claudia.  “What’s going on with you?  You seem a little distant today and you are barely eating.”
“It’s Sameer.”
“Yeah?  How is he?”
“Oh, he’s just fine.  A little too fine.”
“Spill it.”
“I went by his apartment the other night and let myself in.  I thought he was serious about me when he gave me the key six months ago.  I found out how wrong I was.”
“Why, what happened?”
“Judy was there.”
“Oh, I’m sure it was nothing.  Don’t let her bother you, she probably just forced her way in there by asking him to help her study or something.”
“They weren’t studying Stella.  It looked like studying was the farthest thing from their minds.”
“Oh.  I’m sorry Claudia.  That just makes me ill.  Why would he do that?”
“That’s just it.”  Claudia ran her hands through her hair and picked at her perfectly manicured nails.  “I think that when I made the decision not to have sex again until I was married, it might have cost me my relationship with Sameer.  How can I expect him to understand that I was willing to have sex with previous boyfriends, but not with him?  It’s only natural that if I won’t do it, he’ll find someone who will.”
“No, that is not ‘only natural’.  You know that what you’re doing is right.  You’re following your conscience and your Bible.  You can’t let Sameer’s weakness change your conviction.  You’re too smart to believe what you just said.”
“I don’t know what I believe.  I’m frustrated.  I thought he loved me, but if he loved me he wouldn’t have jumped into bed, well couch, more precisely, with Judy.  Couldn’t he have at least picked someone else?  Did it really have to be her?”
“I’m sorry Claud.  I don’t understand why he would do something like that, but I know you deserve to have a man who will treat you like a princess.  I like Sameer, I really do, but I hope you aren’t going to keep dating him after this.”
“I don’t think I can.  I agreed to lunch at the cafeteria tomorrow to talk, but I can’t see myself continuing a relationship with a guy who would fool around on me, especially with Judy.”
“I wonder what Steven would do.  I hope for Sameer’s sake he doesn’t find out about this.”
“I almost hope he does, but I won’t be the one to tell him.”
“Well, I think it’s an ice cream night, don’t you?  Forbidden chocolate or Heavenly hash?”
“Don’t you have any strawberry?”
“No, but I have strawberry syrup and vanilla ice cream.”

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Exerpt from Elle E. Kay’s upcoming novel Claudia

Shadowing Stella by Elle E. Kay book cover on a picture of the endless mountains on a foggy morning.

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