Looking across the room she saw the damage that had been done. Clothing was strewn carelessly over the floor, the sheets on their bed had been ripped off, two holes had been punched into the wall near the door, in the middle of the mess was a photo of the two. The photo had cracked right down the middle; picture perfect.
She sighed deeply, she knew this was coming, Biting down on her lip and willing herself not to cry again, Hayley reminded herself that she didn’t deserve to cry. After all, this was her doing; maybe not the mess in the room, but the mess they were in.
Reaching out to one of his shirts, the shirt she’d bought him when they had first started dating. He’d always loved that shirt, and not it as laying on the ground, ripped and unloved.
Hayley closed her eyes momentarily and was brought back to their fight.
Hayley sat on their bed, humming along to the radio that was playing lightly in the background. Gently placing the photo of her and Ryan into the new frame she had bought that afternoon. She heard the front door open and close, Ryan’s footsteps getting closer to their room with each step he took. He stopped in their doorway, sucked in a breath and looked down at Hayley, who smiled lovingly up at him.
“So, I spoke to Pete today,” Ryan said casually as he leant against the doorframe.
Hayley’s breath caught in her throat at the mention of Pete’s name, but she wouldn’t show it in front of Ryan and tried to act as normal as possible, “yeah, what’d he say?”
“Nothing much really,” Ryan shrugged and continued, “just had to get a couple of things off his chest.”
“What’s Pete done this time?” Hayley nervously laughed. She could feel the heat suddenly course through her body and the perspiration start to build on her forehead.
“You know Pete, there’s always some controversy with him,” Ryan shrugged again and took a step into the room.
“Yeah. So, pizza and a movie tonight?” Hayley asked in an attempt to change the conversation.
Ignoring Hayley’s last comment, Ryan took another step towards her, “he said the guilt was tearing him up.”
Hayley nervously shifted on the bed, she felt a lump form in her throat. She knew as soon as it happened that it was inevitable that Ryan would find out.
She wished it had never happened, but how could anyone possibly resist Pete’s charm? Hayley tried so hard to forget it had happened, and for a while she did; that is until tonight.
“So when did you plan on telling me, or did you think it’d just get swept under the rug?” Ryan’s voice was still casual and it was starting to scare Hayley.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Hayley said, trying to play dumb to the whole situation.
“Tell me, was it worth it? I mean, it must have been amazing for you to go back more than once.”
Hayley’s forehead creased in confusion, “it didn’t happen more than once!” As soon as the words had left her mouth, she clamped a hand over her mouth in disbelief.
Ryan smirked, he knew it had only happened once, but he also knew that Hayley wouldn’t admit to it unless he said it. Hayley was never one to let a rumour be believed.
“Ryan, I can explain,” Hayley stammered stupidly.
“You don’t need to, Pete already did.”
Ryan walked closer to the bed, his eyes looking directly into Hayley’s. When Pete came to him that day, he wanted nothing more than to believe Pete was lying. Ryan wouldn’t admit it to anymore, but he cried for so long after Pete had left. He was in-love with Hayley. Hell, he planned on asking her to marry him.
“You know what he said to me?” Ryan asked and Hayley shook her head in response. “He said he doesn’t regret it.”
“Why’d you do it?”
Hayley’s mouth opened and closed several times, she just couldn’t seem to find the right words to explain why she had done it. There was no good explanation, Pete had come onto her and she willingly gave in, never once thinking about the consequences.
“How many of my friends have you fucked?” Ryan’s voice was growing harsher with each syllable he spoke.
Shaking her head violently, Hayley tried to say something but she was cut off.
“How could you do this to me?” Ryan screamed.
He confidently strode towards the bed before grabbing Hayley’s arm and pulling her up. The picture frame that was sitting in her lap fell to the ground where it ungracefully cracked down the middle.
Hayley was shaking now. Ryan had never been rough with her, but when he got mad he was definitely scary to be around. Usually he’d just punch walls, and right now Hayley wasn’t sure what he was capable of doing.
Grabbing firmly at Hayley’s chin, Ryan forced her to look into his eyes. By now the tears had started falling freely from Hayley’s eyes, her vision was blurred but she could still see the fire in Ryan’s eyes.
“I want to know why.”
Hayley could feel Ryan’s fingernails digging into the wrist he was tightly holding onto, she tried to struggle out of his grip but that only made him hold on tighter.
“I don’t know,” Hayley stuttered in-between sobs.
“Am I not good enough?” Ryan’s voice was quiet, almost a whisper; it shocked Hayley.
“Of course you are, Ryan,” Hayley brought her hand up to Ryan’s face. She wanted to try and calm him down, and she knew he always found comfort in her touch.
But Ryan wasn’t ready or willing to calm down yet. He pushed Hayley back roughly; losing her balance she fell to ground. Ryan regretted it as soon as he’d let her out of his grasp, but right now he was too angry to worry about it. Besides, she deserved it.
“I’m leaving,” Ryan stated simply.
He moved to the set of draws, which held his clothing and began pulling clothes out, not caring if some landed on the floor. Hayley sat on the floor numbly watching Ryan, she wanted to beg him to stay but was too afraid her voice wouldn’t work if she tried to use it.
Ryan suddenly stopped and turned around to face the whimpering Hayley, “Do you know how much I thought I loved you?” He reached into the draw behind him and pulled out a small box before throwing it at Hayley.
Hayley shyly reached for the box and opened it. Inside was a beautiful diamond engagement ring.
She gasped and looked up to Ryan, fresh tears now spilling from her eyes.
Upon seeing this, the anger Ryan had been trying to suppress seemed to bubble up inside him. His fists clenched into tight balls and he let his frustration out on the wall behind him.
“Ryan, I’m so sorry. I never meant to, it just happened,” Hayley spoke fast and her words seemed to blend together to create a string of useless words.
Ryan walked towards Hayley, and for a moment she thought he was going to forgive her. Instead, he reached for the box in her hands and forcefully pulled in away. Picking up the bag he’d just packed, Ryan left without another word.
And now Hayley was sitting on the floor, wanting nothing more than to just curl up in a ball and die.
Looking up at the ceiling she breathed in deeply. From inside the bedroom, the distinct sound of keys in the lock could be heard.
Hayley hastily scampered to her feet and ran for the front door.
Ryan had just closed the door behind him when he saw Hayley running towards him. He smiled slightly and opened up his arms, she ungracefully fell into him, wrapping her arms tightly around him.
“I’m so sorry,” she sobbed into his chest.
“I love you, Hayley,” Ryan whispered into her hair, “promise me you’ll never do anything like that again.”
“I promise,” she whispered back without hesitation.