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       Ella and Micha: Infinitely and Always, p.1

         Part #4.60 of The Secret series by Jessica Sorensen
 
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Ella and Micha: Infinitely and Always


  Ella and Micha: Infinitely and Always (The Secret)

  Jessica Sorensen

  All rights reserved.

  Copyright © 2014 by Jessica Sorensen

  This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance of characters to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental. The Author holds exclusive rights to this work. Unauthorized duplication is prohibited.

  No part of this book can be reproduced in any form or by electronic or mechanical means including information storage and retrieval systems, without the permission in writing from author. The only exception is by a reviewer who may quote short excerpts in a review.

  For information: jessicasorensen.com

  Cover Design and Photo by Mae I Design

  http://www.maeidesign.com/

  Table of Contents

  Table of Contents

  Chapter 1

  Chapter 2

  Chapter 3

  Chapter 4

  Chapter 5

  Chapter 6

  Chapter 7

  Chapter 8

  Chapter 9

  Chapter 10

  Chapter 11

  About the Author

  Chapter 1

  Micha

  Encore! Encore! Encore!

  Lights blind me from above as I step out onto the stage again and grasp the microphone stand. The background music throbs in my veins as I pour my soul out to a room full of a thousand strangers, all begging me to understand them, see them, connect with them.

  Love, it’s always there.

  Aching, hard to bear.

  Burning inside my veins.

  Heart filled sorrow, igniting pain.

  Shattered. Your words cut deep.

  Strike my soul and let me weep.

  It’s not really my soul that I speak of anymore. A long time ago, yes, back when love was hard to endure. Back when it was one-sided. If I were to write a song about how I feel now, it’d end up sounding like one of those frilly, pop ones. I’m too happy now. At least, that’s what my producers have been saying lately.

  Too happy?

  Is that even a thing?

  Apparently it is because it’s been repeated a lot. I’m not sure what they expect me to do. Become less happy? Yeah, even if that was possible, which it’s not, I wouldn’t do it. All of my pre-Ella years—the less happy life they speak of—is something I’d never go back to. Her and our happiness is the most important thing to me.

  “Thank you, everyone,” I say into the microphone as I finish up the song. Then I collect my guitar and stride off the stage, dodging around the next band.

  I usually linger around and sign a few autographs, but there’s something important waiting for me in the back room. Plus, my heart hasn’t really been into signing lately. I’m not sure why exactly; whether the pressure to change is starting to get to me, or if I’m just exhausted.

  At twenty-five years old, I’ve been playing for the same record label for a few years now. I have put out three albums, been on fifteen tours, have written so many songs I’ve lost track, and sometimes, I miss playing just for me.

  As my thoughts and worries weigh at my mind, I practically sprint down the dimly lit hallway and past a father and young son, who are waiting in front of one of the doors. Who knows why the dude has a kid back here, but it reminds me of another thing I’m missing out on.

  Starting a family.

  But, there’s more to that than just being on the road. Ella has made it pretty clear she’s not ready to be a mother—might never be. The last thing I’d ever do is pressure her into that, but as our extended family grows, I find myself wishing for a child of my own more and more.

  Lost in my thoughts, I reach the closed door at the end of the hall. As I reach for the knob, I’m side-blocked by my producer, Mike Anderly. I try not to curse under my breath, but it’s difficult. I don’t want to talk business tonight. I want to get behind that damn door and to my serenity I haven’t had in over a month.

  “Great job, Micha.” He sticks out his hand to shake.

  I shake his hand and offer him a curt smile. “Thanks.”

  He fake smiles back, a new routine of ours. “I just wanted to know if you have thought anymore about the tour and the new album.”

  “A little.” I switch my guitar into my other hand and then scratch the back of my neck. “Look, I’m not sure if it’s the right direction for me to go. I like singing my own songs, and the whole sexy, manwhore singer thing… Well, I really don’t want it to be my thing.”

  “There are a lot worse things than that, Micha. So far, you’ve been really lucky in this business.”

  “I know that,” I reply with a weighted sigh. “And I’m grateful for everything you’ve done for me, Mike, I really am, but… I’m just not feeling the new image.”

  “Look, Micha,” he says, getting right down to business. “As much as I would love to tell you to keep going in the direction that you are, it’s not really up to me. It’s up to the label.”

  I frown. “So you’re saying what, exactly? That, if I don’t change, I lose the label?”

  He shrugs. “Sorry, kid, but it’s just how things are.” His hard expression slightly softens. “Look, if it was up to me, I’d let you do whatever.”

  Yeah, right. I know Mike enough to understand how full of bullshit he is ninety-nine percent of the time.

  He places a hand on my shoulder. “Just think about it, okay? You’ll have a few weeks off coming up in the next couple of months. Go on a vacation or something. Clear your head a little.”

  I offer him the same fake smile he gave me earlier. “Fine.”

  “There ya go.” He pats my cheek, pleased, as if I’ve just told him I agree with changing my image. Then he turns and walks away to charm whatever other bands he can find lurking around the hallways.

  Me, I reach right for the doorknob, glad the tour will be over in two months because this shit is starting to get old.

  As I push open the door and step into the small room, I force myself to shed all of my problems and leave them out in the hallway.

  “Hey, sad boy,” Ella greets me the moment I enter, wrapping her arms around me and pulling me close.

  “Sad boy?” I drop my guitar to the floor and hug her back with everything I have in me. Suddenly, I can breathe freer. “I’m way beyond happy right now.”

  I haven’t seen her in almost a month, and I didn’t realize until now just how great of an affect her absence has on me. Ever since she opened her own art gallery and started traveling with me less, being on the road has gotten harder. It’s been almost two years that I’ve been doing this on my own, and the loneliness has begun to take a toll on me.

  “Yeah, but you weren’t earlier.” She nuzzles her nose into the crook of my neck. “You looked sad playing tonight.”

  “You could tell?” The intoxicating vanilla scent of her is almost enough to fade my problems away.

  “Of course I could tell.” She presses her lips to my throbbing pulse. “After five years of marriage, I know you as well as you know me, mister.”

  I chuckle as I pull away and drop a soft kiss to her full lips, her taste warming my body. “Is that so?”

  Her beautiful green eyes sparkle. “Of course that’s so. I’m always right. Haven’t you realized that yet?”

  Laughter slips from my lips as I cup her face between my hands. “I love you, pretty girl.”

  She smiles as I lean in to kiss her. “I love you, too.”

  Our lips meet halfway, and the connection sparks an overwhelming desire. My body becomes way too eager, way too fast. Within ten seconds, I’m unbuttoning her shirt, tugging at the locks of her auburn air, and tasting h
er with hunger, lust, love, and need.

  She softly chuckles against my lips as I jerk her shirt off. “You’re always so horny every time I visit.”

  “Mmmm.” I suck her tongue into my mouth as I cup her ass and press her body into mine. “You taste so good.”

  When she runs her fingers through my hair and giggles, the sound is like soulful music to my ears.

  “You’re all sweaty from performing,” she whispers against my lips while her hand wanders down my back, then she slips it into the back pocket of my jeans. “It’s sexy.”

  With one swift movement and a low growl, I scoop her up into my arms and plant her ass on top of the table in the corner of the room. “You’re the sexy one.” I spread her legs and grind myself against her.

  She moans in response, her head falling back, her eyelids fluttering. “God, that feels so good.”

  “It’s about to feel even better,” I murmur against her lips as my fingers wander to the clasp of her bra.

  Right as I’m about to unfasten it, someone knocks at the door.

  “Go away,” I shout then devour Ella with my lips again as I unhook her bra and slip the straps from her shoulders. As the fabric falls from her chest, I plant needy kisses down her neck to the base of her throat, trailing down all the way to her breasts. Taking her nipple into my mouth, I suck hard, just how she likes it.

  “Micha,” she gasps, her knees coming up to my hips as her fingers tangle through my hair.

  I move to the other nipple and wrap my lips around it, giving it the same treatment.

  Knock. Knock. Knock.

  “Micha, open the door. We need to talk,” Mike calls out.

  “In a minute,” I shout back, growing frustrated because he’s ruining the mood. And it’s the only mood Ella and I are going to have for a while.

  “I know Ella’s in there,” he says, “but I promised the house manager that you’d sign autographs for an hour, so you need to get out here. It’s good for your image, too. It shows the fans you appreciate their support.”

  Letting out a frustrated grunt, my forehead falls against Ella’s bare shoulder. “I don’t want to sound ungrateful, but I’m really getting tired of this shit.”

  “Of what?” she asks, smoothing her hand over my head. “Of signing autographs?”

  “No.” Shaking my head, I stand up straight. “Mike, the label, my image.”

  Her bottom lip juts out, and it’s so damn sexy I almost forget I’m upset. “I’m sorry, sweet boy. I don’t ever want you to be unhappy.”

  “I’m not unhappy,” I assure her. The last thing I want Ella to do is worry. “I’m just not sure—”

  “Micha, get your ass out here.” Mike bangs on the door and keeps banging.

  “Fuck.” I kiss Ella one last time then back up to the door. “Wait for me?”

  “Of course,” she responds, hopping off the table and reaching for her bra on the floor. “Where else would I go?”

  Smiling, I open the door and walk out of the room. The smile vanishes from my face the moment I enter the hallway and leave the only person I really want to see behind. Because I only feel like myself when I’m with Ella—only then do I feel whole—which leaves me wondering if maybe it’s time to quit.

  But then what? What would I be if I didn’t have my music? A good husband. I’m not even sure if I am since I’m never home. I want to be home more. I want to be a great fucking husband, have a job I love and one where I can see my wife every day. I want to know my home. Take care of it. Start my own family.

  I just wish I could get the guts to do it.

  Chapter 2

  Ella

  Poor Micha. He looks so sad and has for quite a while. It nearly kills me to see him so depressed, especially since I know firsthand how dark depression can be. I still struggle with my own sadness here and there, particularly when I’ve been alone for too long. I’ve learned how to be strong, though, to support Micha and his dream like he’s done for me.

  “I need to find a way to help him,” I mutter to myself as I sit at the dimly lit bar, drinking an ice-cold beer while waiting for Micha to finish up signing for the fans.

  The bar is attached to the space where the concert took place. The area has been cleared out, most of the lights turned off, and the air is ghostly quiet. The silence is soothing to me along with the alcohol in my veins. I needed soothing tonight after a crazy fan tried to put me in my place on the way backstage. Micha has gotten enough publicity that the hardcore fans recognize me now.

  “You’re Micha Scott’s wife, right?” she sneered as the bouncer moved aside to let me through.

  Choosing to ignore her, I tucked my identification into my back pocket and headed for the door.

  “Excuse me. I’m talking to you.” She reached over the roped area and grabbed my hair. Yes, actually freaking grabbed my hair!

  When my head whipped in her direction and my hands balled into fists, she let me go.

  “Touch me again, and that face of yours won’t be so pretty anymore.”

  The bouncer stepped in then and shoved her back, but she made sure to get in her final words.

  “He slept with me, you know!” she cried out as she stumbled back from the rope. “You’re husband. And he fucking loved it. He loves me.”

  She was short and curvy with wavy blonde hair and wearing too much eye shadow. So not Micha’s type.

  Rolling my eyes, I slipped into the building and let the door slam shut behind me. I was pissed off. Irate. It’s not like I believed her. I know Micha well enough to know he would never cheat on me. Plus, when I was on the road with him in the past, there were a lot of fans that said the same thing, even though I was with him. It’s still a lot to take in sometimes, and there’s a part of me—one I’ll never tell Micha about—that wishes he’d find a way to leave the touring behind and be home with me more.

  I love him enough not to say anything, though, not to crush his dream.

  Despite all the drama tonight, it was still amazing to see him perform. I sometimes wonder how he does it, how he stands in front of a thousand rowdy fans, so at ease. Well, he used to be, anyway. Tonight, he seemed restless to get off the stage and much less eager than he normally is to sign autographs.

  “You’re Micha Scott’s wife, right?” the dark haired, late twenties bartender interrupts my thoughts as she appears in front of me.

  I hesitate. If I’ve learned anything over the last couple of years, it is that it’s not necessarily a good thing in the female world to be the wife of a sexy rockstar. Hence, the crazy blonde tonight.

  “Relax,” she says as if sensing my edginess. “I swear I’m not some crazy fan. Just making sure you’re not a customer, so I can lock up the bar.”

  “Oh.” I nod then swallow the last gulp of beer. “Yeah, go ahead. I’m just waiting for him to…” I flick my hand in the air, searching for a word that would describe what Micha does. Even though I can’t see him right now, I’ve observed enough signings that I can perfectly picture the dazzling smile he offers each person, both male and female.

  “Quit charming everyone,” the bartender finishes for me as she collects the empty beer bottle.

  “Yeah, I guess that’s kind of what he’s doing.” I thoughtfully smile as I glance over at the stage. All that’s left of tonight’s concert is a piano and two large speakers. A man wearing black pants and a T-shirt is closing the curtain, and the stage slowly slips from my view.

  “You can hang around here if you want to,” the bartender says as she pops the cap off another beer and sets the bottle opener down. “I’m sure it gets a little intense being around all those swoony females.”

  I raise my eyebrows and laugh. “Yeah, it kind of does.”

  She flips one of her dark locks off her shoulders then rests her arms on the counter. “I totally understand. I used to date this drummer, and I got some of the nastiest looks while we were going out. And sometimes, they’d even send me notes.”

  “Yeah, I’ve bee
n there, too. In fact, for about two months last year, I kept getting threatening texts from someone who was clearly in love with Micha. We had to change my number, it got so bad. I wish they’d just chill out and focus on his music instead of him.” Usually, I’m not so chatty, but I guess I’m lonelier than I thought.

  “I hate to break it to you, but the more popular Micha gets, the worse it’ll probably become,” she says. When I frown, she adds, “Don’t worry. All you have to do is ignore them. And trust your husband, too.” She smiles as she offers me the beer. “Here, this one’s on the house.”

  “Thanks.” I oblige, taking the bottle from her, wondering if she’s right. Will things get more intense the more popular Micha gets? If so, things are going to suck balls.

  The bartender begins wiping the counters off while I sip on my beer and stare at the television screen. By the time the bartender says good-bye and heads out, telling me the owner of the bar will lock up after all the bands have cleared out, it’s been almost two hours since I sat down.

  Mike said Micha would only have to sign for one hour. Then again, Mike usually feeds Micha shit just so he’ll be more cooperative.

  I finish my beer, growing more restless with each minute that ticks by. Eventually, I get up from the barstool and wander across the floor and under the balcony of the bar toward the stage. I hoist myself up onto the stairs then roll under the curtain and lie on my back. I briefly stare up at the domed ceiling before I push to my feet and take a seat on the bench in front of the piano. My fingers lightly graze the keys, the off-key noise echoing in the emptiness around me.

  It’s not that I’m alone a lot. I have Lila and Ethan at home. My brother Dean and his wife Caroline visit occasionally, and they bring my niece Scarlett, who has so much energy it’s impossible to have enough downtime to focus anything. Plus, when I get really restless, I sometimes fly up to Star Grove and visit my father and his girlfriend.

 
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