Tears burned behind Stephanie’s eyes as she stared at the bright screen before her. She had been staring at her phone all day, hoping and even praying for a text back. At first, she was worried. What if something had happened to him?
She waited for hours, and as time passed, she was losing faith. What was going on? He read her text, but he never bothered to respond. She didn’t know it at the time, but something horrific had happened.
Stephanie was excited about her date with Ethan. After two months of going on casual dates, the man she had slowly fallen in love with was finally going to meet her son. It was the final requirement. If they got along, she would finally make their relationship official.
The pit of her stomach filled with butterflies. The time was finally coming, and she couldn’t wait any longer. She had a good feeling about it. But her day was about to take a sudden, tragic turn.
The Time Came
She set the table to perfection, lining the counter with candles and beautiful decorations. Ethan was a special man, and she couldn’t wait to build a future with him. She prayed that the date would go well.
She just hoped that her son would love him as much as she did. Butterflies filled her stomach when the doorbell rang. Finally, he was here. But how was she supposed to know how horribly it would all end?
The Perfect Man
Everything started off wonderfully. He showed up with pink roses, her favorite flowers, and a toy car for the young boy. He was a soft-spoken gentleman with a caring nature. What was not to love?
That day, their conversations were pleasant as usual. Nathan and Daniel, her young son, seemed to get on better than she expected. It seemed like a promising date, but one simple text would destroy everything.
A Perfect Date
Nathan was talking to the little boy when Stephanie decided to get up and take a few dishes to the back. She had prepared a cheesecake, one of Nathan’s favorite desserts.
As she returned from the kitchen, she placed it on the table and took a seat across from her date. She was certain that if it all continued to go well, he would make it official by the night’s end. But something strange was about to happen.
She was cutting the dessert into thick slices when his phone pinged from within his pocket. “I’m sorry,” he excused himself before pulling it from his jeans.
She didn’t think much of it. He was a busy businessman, and his phone was always pinging. She placed a plate before him, and that’s when she noticed the horrifying expression on his face.
Played For A Fool
“Is everything alright?” She asked, but as she stared at him, her smile faltered. His face twisted in horror as he suddenly pushed his hair out and stood up.
“I have to go,” he spoke shakily, making his way to the door. “Is everything okay?” She was worried now. Nothing like this had ever happened before. “Yes, I’ll call you tomorrow.” Just like that, he left. How could she have known that he was playing her for a fool?
A Better Life
Stephanie Jones was a strong woman. After leaving her husband, she decided to take her son and move to Atlanta, Georgia. She wanted a better life for herself and her son, one that her husband refused to give her.
For the first few years in Atlanta, she remained a single woman. She’d met a few nice men, but none of them ever really piqued her interest. But that all changed when she met Nathan Williams.
He was a businessman from Houston, Texas, and since the moment Stephanie first met him, she knew that he was the perfect man for her. They’d met on a dating site, and although their first date was a little awkward, they couldn’t help but fall for each other.
Nathan wanted to make it official right away, but there was one thing stopping Stephanie from going through with it.
Daniel, her five-year-old son, came first, no matter what. She desperately wanted to be with Nathan, but first, she had to be sure that it was best for her little boy.
She and Nathan went on many dates in the first three months, but she always left Daniel at home with a nanny. As time passed, she knew that she would have to introduce them to each other eventually. But she had no idea that trouble was lurking in the shadows.
It Was Time
After discussing the subject for weeks, Stephanie and Nathan decided that it was time for the two to meet. Nathan was kind and caring. He didn’t have children of his own, but he absolutely adored them.
Stephanie knew that Daniel needed a father figure in his life. He’d been asking questions about his dad, and she could tell that it was making him sad. But she would regret bringing the little boy’s hopes up.
He Couldn’t Wait
Nathan couldn’t wait to meet the little man he’d heard so much about. After a little bit of planning, they decided to have dinner at her house one Saturday night. Nathan would finally meet Daniel, and if all went well, they would make their relationship official.
She was only slightly nervous for the pair to meet. She comforted herself with the knowledge that he was a good man who would be good to her little family. But she had no idea how wrong she was about him.
The Perfect Night
Before long, the day finally came. Stephanie prepared everything to perfection. She made her famous pot roast and baked a large cheesecake, which was Nathan’s favorite. Candles lined the counters, and Daniel was told to be on his best behavior.
Stephanie wanted it to be the perfect night. She had fallen in love with Nathan, and this was the final step before they could be together. But soon, it would all fall apart.
When Nathan first arrived, everything seemed perfect. He brought gifts and wine, which sent butterflies through Stephanie’s stomach. The toy car he brought Daniel granted him a few brownie points too.
While they ate their dinner, Nathan made a real effort to speak to the little boy. Stephanie could tell that he was trying his hardest, and it thrilled her. He wanted to be with her just as much as she wanted to be with him. At least, that’s what she thought.
Once they had finished their meals, Stephanie slowly began removing dishes from the table. She was about to serve dessert, and once that was over, she was going to tuck Daniel into bed and enjoy a glass of wine with Nathan, alone.
She assumed that he would ask the question then. But soon, plans would change.
On The Surface
Stephanie walked back into the dining room with the cheesecake and placed it in the center of the table. Nathan was asking the boy about his school, and she smiled. She loved them together.
Stephanie took a seat across from Nathan and began cutting the cheesecake, placing three slices on three separate plates. On the surface, everything seemed fine, but it was all about to fall apart.
Suddenly, the sound of a phone pinging echoed through the quiet room. Nathan apologized as he pulled it from the pocket of his jeans. Stephanie was used to his phone pinging at random times, so she didn’t think much of it at first.
But as she placed a slice of cake in front of him, she noticed the look on his face. Panic flashed behind his eyes as he pushed his chair out. “I have to go,” He breathed as he jumped up. His mood had shifted in the blink of an eye.
What’s Going On?
Stephanie tried to ask what was going on, but he hardly had the chance to respond, promising to call her the following day as he left the house in a hurry.
She was worried. Nothing like this had ever happened before, and she couldn’t help the sinking feeling in the pit of her stomach. Was Nathan alright? But from that moment on, nothing would ever be the same again.
She didn’t hear back from him that night, and when she woke up the next morning, she decided to call him. It felt like the phone was ringing for hours, and he never answered. She called again, but still, he never picked up.
After she sent him a text, she sat around, waiting for a response. She checked her phone every few minutes, for hours on end. But she didn’t get a response for the rest of that day.
In the blink of an eye, a week went by and she hadn’t gotten a single text from Nathan. She tried to call him again, but for the last five days, his phone went straight to voicemail. She began wondering if he blocked her number.
But what could’ve gone wrong? Everything seemed fine the last time she saw him. Daniel loved him, everything went perfectly, so why did he leave? Her heart was breaking by the second.
Time Was Passing
In the blink of an eye, another week passed without a word from him. She didn’t want to lose hope with him. She liked him so much and she saw potential for a future with him. Why did he just disappear like that?
One day, she even decided to drive to his place, but no one answered the door. She waited for thirty minutes, but there was nothing. The man she had fallen in love with had disappeared from the face of the earth.
Years Went By
Weeks turned into months, and eventually, months turned into years. At first, she tried to call him, but eventually, his number went out of service. She had no way of contacting him, and she did everything in her power to forget him.
For the first few months, she cried a lot. She thought that he was her soulmate, but it seemed that he did not feel the same. But there was a far more sinister truth behind it all.
Eleven Years Later
It wasn’t until eleven years later, when she was forty-one years old, that she finally got some answers. That day, she decided to make herself a Facebook profile for the first time.
She had long forgotten about the man who broke her heart all those years ago. Her focus was on her sixteen-year-old son and her career. After Nathan, she wanted nothing to do with love ever again. But one day, she stumbled across something horrible.
His Facebook Page
Nathan Willimas appeared on her Facebook profile as a suggested friend. She couldn’t believe her eyes when she read his name. Hesitantly, she clicked on his profile, and her heart dropped when she saw his profile picture.
She couldn’t stand to see his gorgeous face for the first time in so long. But her curiosity got the best of her, and she decided to scroll through his profile. Little did she know that she would finally find the answers she needed.
She scrolled for over an hour, reading every single one of his posts. The majority were birthday wishes from friends throughout the years. He didn’t appear to be in a relationship, and he was still working for the same company.
Eventually, she scrolled all the way back to eleven years ago, and there she found it: a link that would answer all of her questions.
The News Article
She clicked on the link hesitantly, her eyebrows furrowing together when it opened the horrible news article. The first thing she noticed was the picture of his face, then she read the awful heading of the article.
‘Businessman sustains serious injuries after car wreck’ it read. There it was once again, that awful sinking feeling in the pit of her stomach.
She read the article with tears in her eyes. It turned out that Nathan had gotten into a horrible accident shortly after he left her house that night. The article said that he received a text from his mother, informing him that his father was in the hospital.
He left Stephanie’s house that night to see his father. On his way to the hospital, another car skipped a red light and ran into him. But it got worse.
He spent two whole months in a coma, and once he got out of it, he went through a long and horrible recovery process. He even had to learn how to walk again.
Tears poured down Stephanie’s cheeks as she read the horrifying story. They agreed to only tell their families about their relationship once it was final. His parents never even knew that there was a woman out there, waiting for him.
It all finally made sense. The truth was awful, but Stephanie was relieved to know what had really happened. All along, she thought that he played her for a fool. She thought that he left because he wasn’t really all that interested.
As she sat there, staring at his profile, she took a deep breath. But just then, her laptop pinged with a Facebook message.
Nathan’s name popped up on her screen, and her heart stopped. He had sent her a Facebook message and she had no idea what to expect. Did he remember her? With shaking hands, she opened the message.
“Stephanie? I have been trying to get in contact with you for ages!” Her eyes grew wide as the next message popped up on her screen, “I’ve missed you so much.”
Disclaimer: To protect the privacy of those depicted, some names, locations, and identifying characteristics have been changed and are products of the author’s imagination. Any resemblances to actual events, places, or persons, living or dead, are entirely coincidental.