I packed my suitcase with a change of clothes for the morning after and all the files I needed for this meeting. To be honest, I had no real interest in going for the business related reasons. I just wanted to take a break from this crazy life of mine. I was being pushed over the edge even when I tried to help out for the better. If whatever I did only made things worse, going away wouldn't harm anyone. In fact, it might just turn out as a positive thing in the minds of my children.
I walked out of my room, my clutch on the suitcase handle tightening when I saw Nadia preparing for dance class. She was leaning over, her back towards me as she looked through the contents of her bag. I cleared my throat loudly to make her aware of my presence and she turned around, her bluish-green eyes widening slightly as her mind put together the scene in front of her.
"Dad? What are you-"
"I've been called urgently for a business meet in New York. And I have to be going now, otherwise I'll miss the plane." It's better this way anyways.
"I've already called my driver to take you two back home when you feel like it. You can stay over for the night if you want, order some dinner, anything. Call your mother if you feel you need to alright?"
She nodded slowly, knowing she had no choice but to go with this. I didn't even say a goodbye as I walked towards the front door. I could feel her eyes on my back and couldn't help wonder what exactly she was thinking about my sudden decision. But she'd know better than to feel hurt or offended of any sort. We've played this scene so many times. And I'd expect both of us to have grown accustomed to it.
Yet, as my hand curled around the cool metal of the door handle, I paused for a second and turned back, looking at her. My eyes swerved away, fixed on the ground as I whispered in an almost inaudible tone, "I'm sorry about Dakota. I never meant to harm any of you two. Maybe it's just easier if I stayed away for a while."
I met her surprised expression for a split second before pulling the door open and walking out.
I'm doing the right thing.
I kept repeating that in my mind, trying to believe so myself yet, in the most farthest corner of my heart, I couldn't help but feel a twinge of uncertainty.