“Put me down!!!” Amanda shouted as Nick carried her to his car. She calmed down once he got down the road from the house.
“You okay now?” he smirked at her as she scowled at him, her arms crossed.
“Nick where are you taking me? I’m not in the mood for this today.”
“Don’t you trust me?” he asked as they parked in front of an old building downtown, not far from where AJ worked. It looked decent but as if nothing had inhabited it for quite some time, like an old warehouse.
“You’re not going to murder me here, are you?” Amanda asked as she cautiously got out of Nick’s car and stared up at the place. Nick winked at her and took a key out of his pocket, unlocking a door.
“Please tell me what this is about.” she said, following him inside. It didn’t look as bad on the inside…..it almost looked as if it had been a nightclub at some point.
“So….what do you think? Pretty cool, isn’t it?” Nick asked. Amanda walked further inside, squinting at the dust covered floors and old countertops.
“It needs a lot of work. Why did you bring me here?” she asked again. Nick held up an envelope and smiled, handing it to her.
“Happy Birthday.” he said. Amanda opened the envelope, it was a deed to the building and a key along with a check for 500,000 dollars. Her mouth fell open as she looked at the check…..Nick had given her half a million dollars like it was nothing.
“You can’t be serious, Nick. This is a lot of money. Why are you giving this to me?” she asked, still looking at the deed.
“Amanda, you helped me with my dream. You gave me the push to go and record that demo, to be a singer like I wanted to. Now it’s your turn. This nightclub is your dream.” Nick explained. Amanda put the papers back into the envelope and hugged him, her eyes welling up with tears.
“Nick this is wonderful, but I’m still in college. I don’t know if I can run a business on my own….” she began but Nick interrupted her.
“You told me that if I wanted to do something, do it. I know this club will be successful, I saw your business plan.” Nick said. Amanda smiled as she remembered the business plan she had drafted for her college assignment.
“I showed it to my manager and he said its impressive for a college student. That’s how I knew you were ready, you’re ready to take this on. I know you have the talent to make it happen.” he told her. Amanda hugged him again, kissing him on the cheek. It felt good in his embrace….she almost wanted to throw the ring back at Lance and run off with Nick, to hell with their marriage.
Nick brought Amanda home and she was greeted by what she thought was an empty house….
“Where the hell have you been? How come my dinner isn’t ready?” Lance’s voice boomed in the dark living room.
“I was out. You know how to cook, don’t you? I have work to do.” Amanda said, walking past him. Lance’s eyes followed her, scowling.
“What work?” he asked.
“I have my nightclub, Lance. My dream is coming true. I need to start planning if I want to open it.” Amanda said, holding up the deed so Lance could read it. She was so happy but Lance didn’t seem to agree.
“He gave you a nightclub? For what? It’s not like today is your…birthday…” he said, realizing his mistake. Amanda gave him a look that burned through him.
“Nick knows how much this means to me, it wouldn’t kill you to be more supportive of it like he has been.” she hissed, tossing the envelope on the counter. Lance’s eyes narrowed, he hated being compared to Nick more than anything and now here he was again. Lance didn’t hate Nick but the jealousy was overpowering his respect for the man, especially since it seemed his wife would rather be with him.
“Excuse me but you’re still in college, what makes you think you can do this on your own? Running a business is a lot of work.” he said.
“I understand what the job entails, Lance. Nick showed his manager my plan and they both think it will be a success.”
“Nick doesn’t know anything about running a night club either, and his manager isn’t much better. It must be nice to have so much money you don’t know what to do with it.” Lance snapped. Amanda was so angry her body was shaking, tears threatened to spill down her face but she held it in.
“Nick knows what he’s doing. He’s not flaunting any money.” she said, her voice shaky.
“He’s throwing his money away by investing in someone with no experience.” Lance replied.
“You….you don’t believe in me…” she said tearfully.
“Baby, I am being realistic here. You don’t have a degree, you’re not even out of college. What if you fail? Nick will have wasted all that money on you, money that he can’t get back. Money that he will regret giving you.” Lance said, putting a hand on her shoulder. Amanda stared at him in shock, her eyes watering. If her own husband didn’t believe in her, how could she accomplish anything? She was tired of all the fighting and tears, tired of trying to please Lance….trying to make herself happy.
“Amanda, wait….” Lance said as she ran past him, her hands covering her face….running out the door and regretting what she was thinking of doing next.