Sandra was laughing at the laundry mishap of her friend, Janet’s foster son. They were at the Mexican restaurant, where they were dining.
“The things we do for children,” Janet said, “You and Mark should consider fostering. It’s fulfilling.”

Sandra sighed, she had doubts about bonding with a foster child. And she felt the pain, as they were not able to have children of their own with her husband, Mark.
“Isn’t that Mark over there?” Said Janet, out of nowhere.

“He might be here on business. I know he sometimes brings clients here for lunch.”
“There, Sandra, just past the huge chiminea,” Janet pointed.
As she was about to wave at her husband, Mark went to the booth behind them, didn’t noticed his wife.
“I’m sorry I kept you waiting, sweetheart,” Mark said to another woman, who was younger than Sandra. She was furious.
“I’m not sure that’s a business meeting, sweetie.” Janet said slowly.
“Despite twenty years of marriage, her husband was having an… affair?” Sandra thought, as her eyes got wet.

“But maybe I’m wrong,” Janet tried to comfort Sandra. “I mean, I’ve often had to flirt a little with prospective clients to get them to loosen up. Maybe Mark’s doing the same thing.”
“No, I think we both know what’s going on over there, Janet,” Sandra said, “I’m going to go over there, tell him what a jerk he is, and stick this fork right in his—”
“Woah!” Janet stopped Sandra. “You can’t just rush over there and assault him, Sandy. Yes, this looks incredibly shady, but there might still be a reasonable explanation.”
“Maybe you’re right,” Sandra said, as she slowed down.
There was a small palm tree between them. They were watching Mark and his female companion who were sitting on the next booth. Mark was sitting close to the woman, his arms were around her.
“There could be an innocent explanation,” Janet said. “Maybe it’s Amy, his boss’s daughter?”

“Maybe. But if he’s cheating…” Sandra’s heart skipped a beat.
“We’ll get evidence first,” Janet said. “And if he is, I’ve got great divorce lawyers.”
They called the waitress, and started to ask questions about Mark and his female companion. “They’ve been here often,” the waitress said.
“Are they always that cozy with each other?”
“I’m sorry, but is there a reason you’re so curious about that table?”
“No, it’s just that I’m sure I’ve seen that man buying clothing for a totally different woman,” Janet intevened. “My friend and I were just debating whether we should post a picture of him on our socials in case he’s cheating.”
“Sorry ladies, but management would have a fit if this restaurant was associated with something so scandalous. If I see either of you snapping photos of anything other than the food, I’ll have to alert my manager.”

“Well, we certainly wouldn’t want to get into any trouble.” Janet said, “Could you please bring us the bill and box this up to go? We have to leave.”
Sandra and Janet had a plan for the next day, and when the next day arrived, Sandra decided to follow the plan. She first went to Mark’s office with lunch, and she was frozen, as she saw the same woman she saw with her husband on the restaurant.
“Sandy!” Mark said, “What are you doing here?”
“I brought lunch,” his wife said. “Hello, I’m guessing we haven’t met before. I’m Sandra, Mark’s wife.”
“You’re Sandra?” The woman said, and she shook Sandra’s hand. “Mark’s told me so much about you. I’m Eliza, Mark’s—”
“Secretary!” Mark approached to them. “Eliza is my secretary. We were just working on the presentation for this evening’s launch event.”
“You look familiar… do I know you from somewhere, Eliza?” Sandra asked.

“No, Mrs. Baker, I don’t think so. I’ve only been working here for a month.”
“I’m sure you never mentioned that your previous secretary had left!” Sanra looked at her husband.
“Nina was promoted to work with Mr. Davies after his secretary retired. Eliza here is Nina’s replacement. She’s really great at admin and has a real knack for the creative side of things, too.”
“You should be singing her praises to Davies, not me,” Sandra said, “These are exquisite,” she said while looking at Eliza’s earrings.
“They were a gift from my fa-father,” the young woman said.
“Wow, did you bring this all the way down here just for me?” Mark intervened. “Thanks for this, honey. But Eliza and I already ate.”
“I hope you avoided all the high sodium and sugary foods,” Sandra said to her husband. “Anyway, some hungry interns will appreciate the homemade food.”
“I’ll take it to the break room and let them know it’s there,” Eliza said, as she took the lunch box.
“Is there something you’d like to tell me, Mark?” Sandra asked.
“I really don’t know what you’re getting at, honey,” Mark said.
“What time should I be ready for tonight’s launch?”
“Oh, uh, are you sure you want to come? It’s not going to be very exciting.”

“Thank you, honey! I’d much rather curl up in front of the TV and catch up on the latest episodes of my favorite series.”
Sandra left then, as she was sure that her husband was hiding something from her.
“You’re back!” Janet said, as Sandra stepped out from her car in front of her house.
“How did it go?”
“The girl with Mark is his secretary. They looked cozy,” Sandra said.
“Don’t ask me how I got this.” Janet said, as she showed to Sandra a receipt for daisy-shaped diamond earrings.
“Oh my God.” Sandra was shocked. “This is for the earrings Eliza was wearing! She looked me right in the eye and told me those earrings were from her father!”
“That brazen little witch!”
“We’ll confront him at his presentation tonight,” Sandra continued then as she was shocked.
“Are you sure you want to do this at a work function?” Janet asked.
“It seems fitting since he’s banging his secretary!”
“How could he do this to me?” Sandra started to cry. “Janet, tell me the truth: Did I do something to chase Mark away? Or should I have put more effort into my appearance? Maybe if I had Botox or gave the girls a lift.”
“It’s not you, Sandy. It’s him,” Janet said.
When they arrived at the conference center, Sandra and Janet were dressed in their gowns. “I’ll distract the guard,” Janet said.
Then she took their attention, and there was a chance, an opening for Sandra to went inside.
She then started to wait for Mark and Eliza to show up. Then she saw them at the stage, and after their presentation, Eliza put her hand on Mark’s shoulder.
Then Sandra approached towards them, and shouted, “You dirty, cheating rat! How long have you been sleeping with your secretary!?”
Then Mark tried to explain her but Sandra thought that everything was clear. During the scene, Mr. Davies had fired Mark, after the investors pulled their money out of their company for the chaos. As people started to leave, Mark took the microphone, and shouted, “She’s my daughter! Eliza isn’t my mistress, Sandra. She’s my daughter!”
Sandra was shocked. She turned around, towards Mark and Eliza.
“Please, Sandy,” Mark begged, “It happened in college. There was a party at the frat house, and there was this girl… I barely remember anything about it, and I didn’t know about Eliza at all until she showed up at our doorstep six months ago—”
“Six months?” Sandra was outraged.
“I was in shock. And I was afraid you’d be hurt to find out I had a child with someone else after we tried so hard to have one of our own.”
“No, Mark, you were a coward,” Sandra said after she saw Eliza crying.
“What you’ve put me through is bad enough, but the way you’ve treated your child is inexcusable.”
“I’m so sorry, Mrs. Baker,” Sandra went towards Eliza. “I never meant to hurt you or give you a reason to think… to think…I just wanted an opportunity to get to know my father. I never thought it would turn out like this. I begged him to tell you.”
“None of this is your fault, Eliza. You did nothing wrong.”
“There, there,” Sandra tried to sooth Eliza.
“There are no more secrets now, and everything’s going to be okay,” she said.
What do you think? Let us know.

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