Status: In Progress.

Cheating Across the Pond

Four Words

22 and living on my own in Manchester. What's a girl to do on a Friday night? Well, I suppose any normal girl in my position would go out clubbing, have the time of their life. I was buried in paperwork, filing papers, and inventorying our stocks. Between the jet lag and the overall lack of a social life, I didn't mind.

“Rob? Are you still here? My ankle has been feeling weird,” A familiar accented voice drifted in from the open door.

“Cristiano?” I called out from the desk. “Rob isn't here. It's just me.”

“Working late?” He asked. He leaned against the doorway, looking nonchalant.

“I could say the same for you.”

“I was talking to Alex,” He walked- more like strutted, he definitely could strut- into the office and leaned against my desk, “About my future. Here.” He admitted.

“I'm finishing up the paperwork and filing the physicals,” I tucked a lock of hair behind my ear. “My future here is pretty much up in the air, too. My internship only lasts for the season.”

“Maybe they'll offer you a job, when it's done,” He cocked his head, “Is that a tattoo?” His fingertips skimmed across my skin. His fingers entwined themselves into my hair as he pushed it back to reveal the small tattoo behind my ear. It was a tattoo of the number 31 surrounded by a heart, “Does Ryan know about this?

“Uncle Ryan does not know about the tattoo,” I had gotten it in college. It was one of those things that I agonized over, debating whether or not to get it.

“What does it mean?”

“It's for my biological dad. He died when I was young. I barely remember him, so I carry him in here,” I patted my heart, “That's what the heart means. The number 31 is the number I wore when I played soccer.”

“You don't play anymore?”

“No. I tore my ACL. It was a qualifier for the U-19 World Cup. We were playing on this artificial turf and my cleat got stuck in the turf. I was a defender. I tried to pivot and sprint to the striker and- umm- there was a pop. I had to get surgery. By the time it was okay for me to train, I wasn't the player I used to be. Things felt weird. It didn't feel right.”

Cristiano's hand trailed down my ear and traced my jawline, “I'm sorry. My father died, too. Three years ago, it was from liver cancer. He drank too much. I don't drink anymore because of him.”

I looked up into his eyes and saw genuine sadness. I didn't see the playboy winger as portrayed in the papers or the party fiend. I saw just a boy, who was missing his dad. “He must have been a great man. The way a turns out son is always a reflection of his father.”

“Have you eaten, yet?”

“Dinner? No. I had a late lunch.”

“Let's go eat somewhere. I'll treat.”

“I don't think that would be particularly wise. I mean it's not exactly professio-”

“You can't go out to dinner with a friend.”

“But I'm not just a friend. I'm a trainer here. I have to be objective in treating you and-”

“It's one dinner. Not a marriage proposal.”

A marriage proposal. I reached to twist my engagement ring, which was one of my nervous ticks. I paused realizing that I had taken it off for work. The ring could get quite cumbersome and caught in different things like tape and pre-wrap. “Okay, let's go,” I relented. I got my purse and made sure everything was in order before leaving the office.

“Did you drive here?”

“I take the Metro.”


“It is. But this is something else,” I was in awe of the sleek Porsche.

“Isn't it?” He smirked.

“It's quite oggle-worthy,” I noted as I sat in the passenger seat. “Like your abs.”

“Thank you. I know a place that's really good.” With that, he sped off. We eased to a stop in front of a

“Is this your house?”

“Yes. I'm going to cook for you.” Cristiano got out of the car to open my door, “Milady.”

“Thank you, kind sir,” I said in my mock British accent, “But really, Cristiano, you don't have to cook for me.”

“I don't have to, I want to.”

“Do you live here alone?” I gestured to the overwhelmingly large house, “It seems far too big for one person.”

“My cousin used to live with me but he moved back to Portugal. Didn't like the England weather,” Cristiano opened the door and led me to the kitchen. “Are you living with Ryan in Worsley?”

“Oh, God, no. I love him and all but he's far too protective. Man U is subletting an apartment for me in this Condotel near the Metro Station.”

“On the menu tonight, my fair lady, is pasta with cream sauce.”

“Cristiano, really, you could at least let me help.”

He gave me this look like that would be the most absurd thing in the entire world.

“Okay, okay. I'll just sit here and watch,” I took a seat at the island. The emptiness of the house seemed eery. It must be weird to live in such a huge place all alone. But now, it seemed different. With the sound of water boiling, the smell of alfredo cooking, Cristiano moving from pot to pot, stirring this, adding salt in that, it felt oddly like home. It felt very domestic. “You're not at all like I thought you would be,” I blurted out.

“What did you think I would be like?”

“Arrogant and cocky. A jerk.”

“Don't believe the papers,” Cristiano said with mix of anger and sadness. He was back was to me but I could see the muscles in his back and arms tense. He brought two plates of pasta and set them down on the marble counter of the island. “Bon appétit.”

Over pasta, we talked about everything. His childhood, my summers in Wales, him leaving his family at a young age, my mother re-marrying, him winning Champions League, my knee surgery, his first time wearing the captain's armband. No memory was left unturned but somehow, despite how comfortable we felt, how easy it was to talk to him, I couldn't tell him about Stephen.

“Are you not enjoying yourself?” Cristiano asked, referring to my sudden silence and preoccupation.

“I am enjoying myself. It's just there is probably five million girls dying to be where I am, right now, in Cristiano Ronaldo's house, eating a dinner made by him, sharing memories. I'm just not sure, if I'm one of those girls.”

“Do you have a boyfriend?”

“No,” I said slowly, “I have a fian-” Before I could finish, his mouth covered mine. My eyes fluttered shut as his fingers entangled themselves in my hair, holding me still. There were many types of kisses, kisses between family, kisses between friends, kisses to greet, kisses to say goodbye, kisses between lovers. This kiss was definitely a kiss between lovers. Insert cheese-y, Nora Roberts description here. I knew it was wrong to return the kiss, when there was someone else, when there was Stephen. It was electric and for the longest time, I didn't want it to end. I broke the kiss, panting, eyes still shut. “I have a fiancé ,” I breathed, a part of me wishing that I had never uttered those four words.
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More Ronaldo goodness! I'm not really sure where I'm taking this and I think it's moving a bit fast so please give me your feedback in the comments. I hope you liked this chapter!