“That dress…” Ryan whispered, looking at me. His eyes were four times larger than what they should be and his jaw was hanging open, as if he were seeing something incredible .
“Do I look okay?” I asked, spinning around on the little platform in front of the triple mirrors.
“Love, you look amazing,” Spencer assured me. “That Brendon is one lucky son of a bitch. I don’t know if he knows that.”
Jon nodded his head. “When you walk down the isle in that dress, he’s going to fall over in disbelief before you can even reach the altar.”
“Oh hush!” I cried, turning back to them. “You are such dirty liars!”
Ryan still didn’t say anything, only kept his dark brown eyes on me, burning a hole in my heart. How much I still needed him and everything to work out, but how much I needed Brendon more. I dared glance back at him, and his expression softened. I could tell that this was eating away at him and he was soon going to snap. How I wished I could ease his pain.
Spencer laughed and placed a hand on my exposed shoulder. My dress was strapless and had diamonds all along the front, descending down to form a V, the end of the stopping just below my belly button. “Alena, you look so beautiful in that dress. Hell, you look beautiful all the time. But that dress is extraordinary. Angel white and dressed to kill, you are.”
“Nice Yoda talk!” Jon cried, doubling over in laughter at his joke. Spencer only rolled his eyes in response.
“No, but really Miss Miller,” Jon said trying to regain some of his composure. “I would be your groom any day.”
I smiled and looked at my slim figure in the mirrors. I placed a hand on my stomach and felt my heart drop. I didn’t care that soon this dress wouldn’t fit me.
I only cared that too soon, the father of the baby growing inside of me was going to revealed. And that would be most disastrous depending on the outcome.
“A blushing bride indeed,” Spencer agreed once more. I noticed Ryan didn’t have anything to say. He only kept his brown eyes locked on the features of my face. I could feel him looking over every plane, every angle, every minute detail. I suddenly felt very self-conscious.
“I’m going to go change back into my street clothes so I can go meet Brendon for lunch.”
Spencer laughed. “If you call those designer jeans and blouse ‘street clothes’. Brendon must love you if he wants to spend that much money!”
I smiled at him. I knew he was only kidding and I gave him a push. “I did not ask for any of that! I wake up to find that he had gone to the studio and in his place is about thirty shopping bags filled with clothes!”
He smiled again. “Brendon always knew the way to a girl’s heart.”
“I always thought it was just for his penis,” Jon remarked, causing us all to roar with laughter. Only Ryan did not join in.
“I’m going to be late for lunch! ‘Kay guys, I’ll check you later. Thanks for all your help. I feel so weird not having bridesmaids or a mom or something to help me with this.”
“Sure thing Alena,” Spencer said, smiling.
“Yeah, it’s no big deal,” Jon agreed. “We love helping you out. And besides, helping you out is just like helping Brendon out. And trust us, we’re very used to having to save Brendon’s ass!” Everyone laughed again and I gave them all hugs, though Ryan’s was the most awkward. Hell, I wouldn’t even call it a hug. We barely touched, and I liked it that way.
I would have absolutely melted under his touch and forever be a prisoner to my own ghastly passions once more. I watched them leave before turning back and going to change. Those boys were more than I could handle, but they were the closest thing to brothers that I had.
Though I don’t think you’re supposed to have sex and possibly be pregnant with one of your brothers…
I was standing outside of the bridal shop, waiting for her to come out. I couldn’t wait to see her. I hadn’t seen her all day due to my leaving early to go to the studio, then when I came home early, she had already left with the boys to go get her dress.
It’s only two more days till the wedding and it’s driving me insane. I just wanted to be hers for the rest of forever and ever. Two days feels like twenty years when you’re waiting for the rest of your life to be with that special someone. I can’t say all the things I would give up just for her to be well again. I would give up my music, give up guitar, give up singing! I would give anything in the world, whatever was required so that we could be together for as long as our short lives allowed. If the world took her, then so be it, take me with.
Life before her seemed pointless and full of disinterest. I thought of every girl I had before her, and they seemed mediocre in comparison, like her a fancy china doll next to the simple paper ones.
That’s what those girls were made out of, paper. You could read them inside and out. They were disgusting and otherwise felt too simple, too plain, even if they were models. They didn’t hold the intellect Alena had, nor the sensibility nor the honesty and sincerity. None of them looked at me the way she does, with wide, bright eyes and a longing depth to know more. And that’s why she astounded me so much. She made everything beautiful just by simply looking at it.
“Brendon? I thought we were going to meet at the restaurant for lunch.”
I quickly jerked my head down to look at her. She was wearing the new contacts that I bought her, because her glasses were gone. She had on a pair of the new jeans I had gotten her and a new, pink long sleeved shirt I had bought her as well. Both garments fit her very nicely and she looked beautiful.
“Actually,” I said, walking toward her. “I have a surprise.”
“A surprise?” she asked, raising an eyebrow. “But it’s not even sunrise!” I laughed as I reached out for her hand. She took my hand into hers, our fingers interlacing.
“Actually, we’re not going out for lunch today.”
She looked up and blinked her long lashes curiously at me. “And why not?” she asked.
I smiled. “It’s simple really. It’s called a surprise for a reason.” I led her down the street, and she did not say much after that, but I could feel that she was anxious.
“You seem tense, love,” I commented as we made our way down to my Honda Civic.
“I just hate being surprised. Not that I don’t love getting surprises, I just hate not knowing,” she replied.
“I know, I know. And for that I am sorry.” We released hands and I got into the front seat and she got into the passenger seat. I put the keys in the ignition and only sat there and stared at her.
“What?” she asked, turning red and turning away.
I shook my head. “Two more days, Alena. Then, there is no stopping us from loving each other. Not a single person in the world could ever doubt something as real as us.” I reached out and tucked piece of hair behind her ear. I placed my lips on the base of her jaw line. I heard a moan escape between her lips, starting low in her throat.
“Not here,” she whispered, touching my face. I needed her now and badly, I could feel it. Just like I knew she needed me right now. My favorite thing about being with Alena is that she takes me away. Being with her is like becoming oblivious and it never felt more right.
She made me forget. Forget the pain from the past, all of my heartbreaks, all of my mistakes. She even made me forget that she was sick and was going to leave me all too soon.
I pulled away from her before I lost control and started the car.
“Brendon, I’m sorry,” she whispered as I pulled away from the curb and tore down the street.
“No, baby, it’s not you.” And it wasn’t her.
“Then what?” she asked, reaching out and gently touching my hand clenched around the steering wheel. I eased my grip up a little bit. I needed to calm down. “It’s nothing, sweetheart. I promise.”
She shook her head. “I don’t believe you.” She sounded almost too afraid to say it.
“I’m only mad at myself, love. Not at you,” I told her, fighting to keep my voice even and calm.
“Why?” she pressed.
“Because there is nothing at all I can do to save you! Okay? I’m a failure. I should be able to fix you and help you. But no, I’m just a fucking failure. In two days, I am going to stand at the altar and say my vows to you and promise to take care of you in sickness and in health. But I can’t take care of you! That’s my whole problem!” I could feel my face turning red with anger. I focused even more on the road than before, but even out of the corner of my eye, I saw Alena’s expression.
Her face was mixture of sadness and hurt. She looked like she had just been kicked in the stomach. Her blue-green eyes were filled with tears. “Brendon,” she said, her voice wavering. “Brendon, I’m so sorry.”
“No baby, no,” I cooed, removing one hand from the wheel to place in gently on her cheek. “Don’t say such things. It’s not your fault; therefore you have no reason to apologize. I wish you only knew that.”
She didn’t say anything more, only looked away. A song by Taylor Swift came on the radio and she started to hum along, trying to block our conversation out of her head.
“We’re almost there,” I told her.
She nodded her head. “I could only hope so.”
I smiled, but not a real one. “I hope it cheers you up.”
“Did you have to buy it?”
“Yes, I did buy it.”
“I wish you would stop buying me things, Brendon. It’s flattering, but I don’t need anything more. As long as we’re together, I don’t care about anything else.”
“But honey, this is something we need.”
We were at the very edge of town and I turned right onto a street called ‘Blaire Avenue’. It was a shady avenue lined with trees and bushes. Large houses grew even larger the farther down the street you went, most lined with black wrought iron fencing.
“Where are we?” she asked, her eyes large with wonder.
“We are in ‘Blaire Society’, the best residential area in all of Nevada.” I pulled into the driveway of large three-story brick house. A large apple tree stood in the font yard, casting a giant shadow onto the driveway and the sidewalk. Late autumn leaves covered the ground, leaving red and orange scattered everywhere, all the way across the vast lawn.
“Brendon,” Alena said, taking in a sharp breath. She placed a hand over her heart; as if she were trying to slow it’s beating. “What--?”
I simply pointed to the sign that read “SOLD”. “See that, love?” She nodded her head. “Well, can you guess who they sold it to?”
“Us…?” she whispered, her voice tiny.
“Of course. This is our house, the place we are going to spend the rest of our lives at.”
“No?” I asked, my heart quickening. No?
“Brendon. I won’t be around long enough to live here! Okay? You bought this house and I don’t even know if I will be alive long enough to enjoy it! And it’s for the rest of my life, not our life.”
“What are you talking about baby? You said three years! You said three Goddamned years! That gives us plenty of time! And they may even have found a cure by then!”
She shook her head, violent tears ripping down her lovely face. “No, Brendon! I-“ But she paused, staring straight ahead. Her face was dark and she kept real quiet.
“You what, Alena? Tell me,” I said, lowering my voice. I reached across the console and pulled her into my arms. She was crying and her whole body was shaking. I stroked her hair and kissed her cheeks and her lips.
“I lied,” she whispered, barely audible.
“You… lied?” I asked. I didn’t understand. Why was she saying this?
“Brendon, I lied!” She pushed me and raised her voice. “I fucking lied! I have only another year, maybe not even that! I just didn’t want to tell you because I was terrified that you would quit music just for me! I would feel horrible! But I look at this beautiful house and I listen to your plans about making a wonderful family and it tears me apart! I can’t allow myself to go through with this! I am dying Brendon. I am a liar and a cheater, and Ryan should have let me die up there. I don’t deserve what little life God has tortured me with. I’m sorry Brendon.”
Then, she tore open the car door and flew down the street, running as fast as she could.
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