Feeling sluggish and heavy, I slowly lifted myself out from the crumpled covers and swung my legs over the side of my bed. I picked up my phone as the vibrating ceased and rubbed the sleep dust out of my tired eyes before even attempting to read the newly received text message – which I soon found had been sent by Brendon.
hey! how’d last night go????
I groaned as the memory replayed itself, and placed the phone back down; if I told Brendon what happened he’d probably call, and I didn’t feel up to relaying yesterdays events just yet.
I spent the morning trying to keep myself as occupied as possible. I ran myself a bath filled with every single bath product I could find stashed away in the back of my wardrobe (birthday gifts which I’d never got round to using) and allowed myself to soak in them until my fingers went as wrinkly as Spencer’s grandma.
I dried myself, blow dried my hair and got dressed into some comfy sweatpants before struggling to make my way down the staircase in order to prepare myself a proper breakfast for once. I hopped around the kitchen and poured myself a bowl of cereal, toasted two pieces of toast which I spread with a thick helping of butter, and made myself a cup of coffee to go with it.The moment I sat down at the kitchen table however, I realized that I wasn’t the slightest bit hungry.
The ever so pleasant arrival of my morose, ill-tempered mother signified that it had reached lunch time. I was still unwilling to eat – perhaps due to the many knots that were constantly forming in my stomach – so I decided instead that I should probably reply to Brendon.
No matter how much I tried to distract myself, I couldn’t stop thinking about what had happened with Ryan yesterday and perhaps talking about it, however unpleasant the idea seemed, might turn out to be somewhat beneficial. When I re-entered my bedroom, it seemed Brendon had already tried calling anyway. Three times.
When I called Brendon back, I hadn’t yet prepared what I was going to tell him. I couldn’t mention anything about the bruise or what Ryan had told me, of course. Not that I particularly wanted to mention it anyway – talking about it meant thinking about it, and I had been trying my best not to do just that ever since the mere possibility of it had formed in my head.
I ended up improvising. ‘…And I suddenly burst into tears. I don’t know what set them off. I had been really emotional all day…um, that time of the month I guess…’
‘You cried? What did Ryan do?’ Brendon asked.
From what I could tell, he had now stopped eating his potato chips; the sudden turn in my story capturing his full attention. This was an amazing achievement on my behalf; causing Brendon Urie to actually stop eating. Not that I felt much like reveling in it right now.
‘Well…’I pondered ‘Not a lot. Though he did wipe a tear off my face when we were stood in the driveway…and then he said to me’-
I paused. What he had said to me was ‘I never knew you cared so much’, but that sentence had little relevance in this new, slightly altered version of the story.
‘He said, ‘what’s wrong?’ and I sort of said something like ‘you’ll never understand how much I care about you’…remember, I was very emotional at the time…time of the month…’
Brendon let out an extremely loud, theatrical gasp. 'You...you told him?'
‘More or less…yes. Terrible, isn’t it?’
‘What did he do?’ Brendon breathed.
‘Um, he said ‘what do you mean?’ and I said ‘you know exactly what I mean’… and then after that he did very little. Actually he just stood there. So…I left.’
‘You just left?’
‘Well, he didn’t exactly look if he was going to react anytime soon. And to be honest, I kind of wanted to get out of there before he did.’
I dread to think of what condition my heart would be in right now after hearing what he had to say.
‘And he definitely got what you meant right? He didn’t just think you were talking…platonically?’
‘No, knew. He knows.’ I sighed.
'Oh my God...'
'Tell me about it. Brendon what am I going to do? I shouldn’t have said anything…I mean, now I can never face him again! God, why did I do it? I just blurted it out before I could stop myself.’
‘You mean you acted before thinking? No offence Steph, but you kind of seem to do that a lot.’
‘Yeah, well it’s a bad habit’ I mumbled.
I stopped pacing up and down my bedroom and sunk down upon my bed. I rested my elbow on my knees and my face in my palm.
‘Steph?’ Brendon questioned softly and apprehensively.
‘Mmm?’ I murmured.
‘I- I know this probably isn’t what you want to hear… but I really think you need to talk to Spencer.'
True; it wasn't at all what I wanted to hear. What I wanted to hear was something along the lines of 'It's OK Steph! Everything will turn out absolutely fine...', but Brendon, although he had his blonde moments, wasn't stupid. And however unappealing the idea was, I knew that he was right. I needed to sort things out with Spencer before I did anything else.
I even had to agree with him when he recited the much despised notion of ‘The sooner, the better’, and I ended the call after assuring him that I would call Spencer straight away.
I scrolled down my contact list abnormally slowly until I finally reached his name. I spent a few moments just staring at it, my insides squirming in discomfort, until I finally gathered enough courage to press the dial button. I jumped when he finally answered.
He didn’t exactly sound delighted by the fact I was calling him. In fact if anything, he sounded slightly apprehensive to be answering to me. It was as if he somehow knew what was coming.
‘Hey Spence’ I said, bracing myself for the plunge ‘Um, I…I think we need to talk.’
I was squirming uncomfortably as I waited for him to reply to me. Finally he sighed and said ‘Yeah, me too. Did you want to talk now, or do you want me to pick you up or something?’
‘Pick me up’ I said almost instantly ‘Um, please.’
Spencer gave out a dry and humorless chuckle ‘OK, I’ll be there in ten.’
_ _ _
‘I’ll have a um…a um…’ I clicked my fingers as if to somehow snap the word I was looking for into my brain ‘Oh…what’s it called?’ I looked at Spencer for assistance, but he shook his head to show he was unable to help me out. ‘a um… a coffee!’
The stocky waitress who had spent the last thirty seconds tapping her pen irritatingly upon the table gave me a look so deathly that I smiled nervously and then recoiled. ‘And what kind of coffee would that be Madam?’ She asked bitterly, the frown never leaving her drooping face.
‘Umm’ I said, as I chewed on my thumb, my foot jiggling underneath the table anxiously ‘I don’t know…surprise me!’
The woman stood blinking at me, then sighed heavily and left, muttering undeterminable curses under her breath. ‘Someone’s nervous about something’ said Spencer, causing me to switch my attention away from the grumpy hag’s broad back.
I smiled at him distractedly and glanced around the coffee shop. It was warm and cozy looking, and the aroma of coffee that filled the room was fairly comforting…but it still wasn’t enough to cure my unsettlement. ‘Steph?’ Spencer said, and I snapped my head back round to face him ‘I thought you wanted to talk to me about something?’
‘Right’ I sighed, tucking my hair behind my ears and tugging down my sleeves. I took a deep breath and opened my mouth – only to pause and close it again. I repeated this action several times, probably causing Spencer to wonder whether he was sat facing a girl or in fact, a goldfish. He waited patiently enough though, attempting to mop up some coffee spillage with a coaster.
‘This isn’t working, is it?’ He said finally, whilst I was still struggling to form any words.
‘Oh’ I said ‘Well I’m sure you could get one of the staff to clean it up for you…’
Spencer looked at me strangely ‘What? No! I meant this’- He gestured between the two of us- ‘This isn’t working is it?’
I smiled sadly at him and bit my lip. ‘It’s just…I think we’re better off just being…’
‘Friends?’ Spencer said with a lopsided smile.
I nodded timidly ‘I’m so sorry Spencer’ I gushed suddenly ‘I really am, I mean your great, you really are and I love you to pieces, but this just doesn’t really feel...’ I paused trying to think of a suitable word to use but my mind hand gone blank.
‘Right?’ He contributed.
My shoulders sagged and I gave him a small, apprehensive smile.
‘Don’t worry’ He said, shaking his head at the table as he spun the damp coaster round with his forefinger ‘I get it.’ –He stopped spinning and looked back up at me-‘I sort of feel the same way. I guess … I guess we’d probably be better of as friends.’ He nodded. He sat back, shrugging his shoulders and twitching the corner of his mouth ‘Ah, who was I fooling? I always thought you were way too pretty to be dating me anyway.'
‘Oh, Spencer’ I groaned, reaching my hands out across the table where they clasped around his. He looked up and met my eyes, just as I had wanted him to. ‘You are the sweetest, funniest, nicest guy that I have ever had the fortune to meet. Any girl would be lucky to date you, and I mean that. And I am so incredibly lucky to have you as a friend and….and I couldn’t bear it if, if I lost you because of this, although I do understand completely if you never want to talk to me ever again’-
Spencer leaned forward and rubbed his thumb across the back of my hand which was still entwined with his ‘That’s never going to happen ok? It’s not your fault it didn’t work out, it just…wasn’t meant to be, that’s all. Steph, I could never hate you.’
I smiled as if comforted at his words, when really I felt nothing but guilt wash over me. Truth is it was my fault. Of course it was my fault; I was the one who said yes to being his girlfriend when I liked someone else – his own best friend, for that matter.
Though somewhere mixed in with all that guilt was a small portion of relief. It looked as if I wasn’t going to have to explain my true motives for breaking up with him after all (being that I never even liked him that way in the first place). Otherwise he truly would hate me- and with good reason. Telling him didn't exactly seem neccessary though. I mean, what difference would it even make? It would only make him feel even worse. It would make me feel even worse.
‘I really hope this doesn’t’- but I paused, my sentence interrupted by the sudden sounding of a cell ringtone. Spencer dug the device out of his jeans and glanced at it briefly before pressing a button and putting it back in his pocket. He looked back up at me.
‘I really hope this doesn’t mean that’- I tried to continued, only to be interrupted a second time by the same rington.
‘Crap’ He muttered, digging the cell out from his pocket and ending it once again. ‘Sorry’
‘Don’t worry’ I said shaking my head ‘Anyway, like I was saying…’
But that was as far as I got before being drowned out by the Goddamn cellphone yet again.
‘Answer it’ I said, before he could end it for the third time.
‘Yeah, whoever it is is obviously pretty eager to talk to you.’
‘Ok, I’ll be quick’ He said, answering it this time instead and placing the phone beside his ear. ‘Hey Ry, what’s up?’
I stiffened slightly.
‘Uh…yeah I am’ Spencer was saying ‘but it’s not really a good time…the hospital?’
I shot him a puzzled glance.
‘Oh man, is he alright?’
I sat up and unfolded my arms.
‘Yeah of course, no problem…I’m like 2 minutes away. I’ll see you in a bit.’ Spencer ended the call and put his phone back in his pocket. He looked up at my concerned face and questioning look.
‘That was Ryan...’ He said 'their dad's had a seizure.'
Not my favourite chapter...
Only just found out Americans rarely use 'bloody'. Whoops. Guess I'm still learning.
I just wanted to say thank you so much for the lovely, kind reviews I recieved on the last chapter, and other previous chapters. Sometimes when I upload a chapter, I wory because I think it's no good and you'll all be like 'what the hell was that??!'. Like on the last one, I was so nervous about loading the reviews for the chapter but they were all really positive and made me really happy so I just want say thank you very much for that. Especially those of you who can write really mind-blowingly awesome reviews.
Like Tegan, for example. You are lovely, and therefore you can do whatever the hell you want with this story. Apart from steal it. But you wouldn't. But I should probably let you know that at the moment, this story in my word document reaches about 128 pages. But I do like using big fonts.
The next chapter will be out soon.