Here’s chapter 21 of the new book, Dr. Clay, I’ve been writing since NaNoWriMo 2022. Enjoy reading. Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below.
As they kept walking back to their rooms, Agatha became more impatient the longer she was with Valon, who remained silent since they left Clay and Elizabeth alone in his art room. It was as if he didn’t have plans to tell her something. “Why aren’t you saying something now?”
Valon kept ignoring her demands for answers as he walked towards his bedroom. Before he could reach the door, Agatha grabbed him, forcing him to look at her and say something. When he turned, he looked at her and saw the desperation on her face, which displeased him. Even though it was an uncomfortable sight, he tried to keep himself calm, thinking it was his best option.
“I saw what you did, Kuya,” Agatha paused to grab his arm. When she saw her brother’s familiar expression, she scoffed, knowing he didn’t like what was happening. “Seriously? Is there something going on between you and Clay?”
“What are you talking about? There’s nothing between us—” Valon paused, pulling his arm away from her. When he looked into her eyes, he scoffed. “I don’t like that look in your eyes,” Valon said, shaking his head.
“When I walked into that room, I saw you’re about to kiss that man, and don’t tell me I need eyeglasses because I saw what you did right in front of my eyes,” Agatha said as she leaned her weight on one leg while she crossed her arms and arched her eyebrow. “I’m uncertain whether Liz saw it or not.”
“Oh, great. You saw it?” Valon sputtered, looking away, as he couldn’t gain enough confidence to look into her eyes and act as if nothing had happened.
“Oh, yes, my dear brother. What’s going on?” Agatha said in a hushed, sarcastic tone, knowing Valon had never liked that about her. When she noticed her brother refused to speak, she looked away and scoffed, shaking her head in disbelief. “You know what, I don’t care if you’re gay. I don’t like this idea you have with Clay.”
“Aren’t you way too assuming with what’s going on between us?”
“But I saw what you’re about to do with him. You can’t lie to me now.”
“I’m not lying to you, Agatha.”
“I hope so. Because until now, I thought if I had not entered that room and hadn’t screamed, looking for you, you probably would have liked the idea of kissing his lips.”
“What the hell are you talking about now? I said, there’s nothing between us. We’re colleagues—”
That got Agatha’s attention. “Are you both working at San Carlos University?”
“Yes. He’s one of the new doctors assigned there. So, whatever you’re thinking about right now, all I can say is there’s nothing more than there is to it.”
“Oh really? A doctor and an art professor slash department head. Together. Interesting, hmm?”
“Yes, really!” Valon sputtered, mimicking Agatha, which annoyed her further.
“How does it even work? I mean, how did you two meet?”
“I should ask you the same question, too. How did you meet Clay’s fiancee?”
“It’s none of your business, Kuya.”
Valon scoffed and let out a chuckle while shaking his head in disbelief.
“I saw how you looked at him. You look like a Romeo, and Clay is your Juliet. And who are we? Tybalt and Mercutio? Are you fucking kidding me?”
“Can you stop playing riddle games with me? Because I’m not in the mood to play mind games right now.”
“Why? Do you feel threatened when Liz is here?” Agatha said in a frustrated tone, though she attempted to tease him, only to find herself receiving a silent mock from Valon.
“Stop it, Agatha. I’ve had enough for today. So, good night,” he said in his cold, commanding tone as he was about to walk past behind her.
“I’m not playing mind games with you,” Agatha said before letting out a frustrated groan.
That prompted Valon to turn his back, facing her with an eyebrow shot upward. “Tell me straight, Agatha. What are you trying to tell me?”
“I know you, and you know that. We fucking know each other so much. We know each other’s shit. So, you better listen to every word I say now, and don’t bullshit me with lies anymore.”
“Fine. What do you want to know?” Valon said in his cold baritone as he looked at her as if he was trying to restrain himself from saying too much. Even though he was in chaos inside, he stood there still, anticipating what Agatha had to say. Despite the need for escape, he chose to stay and face the impending doom, which he sensed was coming anyway. Yet, he never expected it to happen right then. With the person he cared for the most.
“Your eyes don’t lie. They never lie, Kuya. I never saw that fire in your eyes whenever you were with your ex-girlfriends before. It was different from how you look at Clay from afar. When you saw him with Liz, you’d never been that irritable before. So, better tell me everything now before this gets crazier than it is now. Literally. I mean, I didn’t know you liked men.”
Valon couldn’t hold himself any longer, even though he tried to restrain himself from lashing out. “Believe me or not. I never did, and I don’t think I would.”
“Is that so? Weren’t you about to kiss him?” Agatha said, expecting to hear Valon’s defensive answer. But when he refused to give her one, she glowered, and her eyes fired up as they turned bloodshot and teary. “Don’t tell me you’re falling for Clay?”
At this point, Valon felt defeat, unknowingly showing a grimace on his face while raising both arms in surrender. “I don’t know what I should say now. Good night,” he said as he turned his back and walked into his room.
But that didn’t stop Agatha from following him. As soon as he saw her entering, he couldn’t help but cluck. “What the hell, Agatha!”
“Don’t you dare turn your back on me because we’re not done talking yet?”
Valon sighed and rolled his eyes. “Would you despise me because you didn’t expect to have a competition?”
“Wow. I didn’t expect you to say that to me.” Agatha felt defeated. She could pull away and lean against her heat, crossing her arms. She clucked and looked astounded as she pushed herself against the table. “Don’t worry. I don’t have intentions to steal my brother’s lover. Well, I don’t care if you’re gay or not.”
“I’m glad to hear that,” Valon said, though he was upset about this unusual conversation he had with her.
“Still, out of all people, you chose someone’s fiancé. You know what, I saw how distressed Liz was when she couldn’t find her man, and I find it utterly disturbing to know that my own brother is involved in this mess.”
Valon clucked. “That’s none of my business.”
Agatha scoffed and crossed her arms, knitting her eyebrows. “How could you even say that to her?”
“I didn’t force them to come here. Not even Clay. I planned to celebrate Christmas with you and dad this year. But bringing Clay here wasn’t part of it. And so were you. Weren’t you responsible for bringing her here? So, if they’ve got problems, I don’t care. If you’ve got a problem with me being with Clay, it’s none of my business.”
Agatha sighed. “Does dad know?”
“What?” Valon sputtered.
“About what you’re doing,” Agatha said with anticipation.
Valon rolled his eyes. “Dad hasn’t arrived yet. So, we’ll see how he would react to having unexpected guests upon his return. Why don’t we bet on that?”
“Don’t worry. I will always love you as my brother,” Agatha said in a sarcastic tone, shaking his head.
“Come on. What if it was a friendly gesture? Is there something wrong with that?”
“Are you trying to say I should kiss every woman’s lips to say I’m friendly?”
Valon clucked again and rolled his eyes again, sighing out of frustration. He shook his head, showing his defeat, knowing this conversation was heading nowhere. At that point, he could only look Agatha in the face and say nothing. Otherwise, he knew he would say every bullshit he had in his head, which was the last thing he would say to his beloved younger sister. But then, he gave in after he sighed. “What if I am?”
Agatha knitted her eyebrows. “What do you mean?”
“What if I like Clay?”
“I don’t fucking care if you’re gay or not. But out of all people, why Clay?”
“I said that’s none of your business.”
“Fuck you! Can you stay out of their lives?” Agatha sputtered as she turned her back and was about to walk out.
“What if I won’t? What will you do?” Valon said, which forced Agatha to look at him, seemingly speechless. It was as if she didn’t expect to hear that from her brother.
“Kuya, are you serious?” Agatha asked as she knitted her eyebrows and cast an angry stare at him. She kept her mouth shut while waiting for him to speak, only to find herself in a ridiculous situation. Realizing it was like that, she couldn’t help but let out an awkward laugh before glowering at him. “I don’t care what’s going on between the two of them. It’s none of my business, too. But, as your sister, I don’t want my brother to be in trouble and become the reason for their break up. Do you get me?”
Valon hissed while he cast out a menacing look on his face and arched an eyebrow. “I don’t need your advice, Agatha. I’m a hundred percent uninterested.”
“I don’t care. Just stay away from this. Stay away from Clay. Got me?” Agatha said, rolling her eyes as she walked away, leaving Valon alone in the room.
“Fine, if that pleases you,” Valon said with disinterest, thinking it would appease her. But when he was alone, it was the first moment Valon felt less choked as he inhaled, sucking the air in the room, and exhaled the angriest sigh of his life. Yet, in his mind, his decision was firm. So, there’s no way he could turn back, though he was hoping Clay would do the same thing, too.
That’s what Valon thought until he walked back to his art room, hoping he could see Clay again. But then, he saw his muse kissing someone else. He stood still, watching them from afar, unknowingly feeling hard punches in his gut. Even though he was aware of his boundaries with Clay, he couldn’t understand why he began to feel his heart sinking the longer he stayed. The more he looked at how Clay passionately kissed Elizabeth, the more it became unbearable to watch. It was as if he felt challenged. Or perhaps, he was afraid of losing something he never had.
When Valon couldn’t bear watching the scene, as Clay and Elizabeth went on, he looked away, sighing. Although he struggled to accept it, he understood well that walking away was the best option he had to keep this going. Otherwise, he would lose something valuable he knew he wouldn’t allow happening. That was a no-go for him, and Valon was clear on that.
Thank you so much for spending time reading this chapter. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did when I wrote this part three months ago. This chapter, in particular, reminded me of those times when I sat before my desk, seemingly prepared to type in words, but I struggled to keep it up.
It took an external motivation to get it through, and, at that time, the NaNoWriMo event was upcoming. At that time, I thought, “This could be a great opportunity to try and give this a shot one more time. You’d done an excellent job with ‘The Rival,’ so you could do it, Mecyll.”
You know, it’s easier said than done because writing a chapter with a clear intent to finish it requires more than just a skill. Since I started writing fiction, I realized how much this work demands my ability to be naked and the guarantees to answer whether I was mentally, emotionally, and spiritually prepared to face my fears, conscious or unconscious.
So, being able to write this down meant I managed despite the countless times dancing around with depression and enjoying the roller coaster rides my anxiety provided me.
This is why I don’t know how I could thank you for your support, regardless of the scale or contribution size, from sharing my work with others or buying my books. It doesn’t matter because, for me, every small act you show is appreciated.
Again, thank you, and have a great day!