Chapter 18: 3x08 P2
3x08 part 2
"Okay, bye." Spencer said over the phone as she hung up. I was at the Osgood with Ezra, but Spencer called, so I went to the entrance to answer it, it was the quietest place. She told me all about Maya's website. I couldn't stop thinking about Emily, I felt so bad for her. I mean, if it were me, and I was waiting to find out if it was really Ezra's website after he died, I would be a mess, but I tried not to think about it.
As I put my phone back in my purse, I looked for Ezra. I took the few steps forward up to the rope and looked at the Osgood sign. It had a picture of a tall U shaped rock that rose high out of the water with tall trees that rose to the top of and a small beautiful land inside it with a boat coming inside the rock.
"Look it's not too late to ditch this and find a miniature golf course." Said Ezra, I turned around and he was right behind me.
"Lyle and Frances Springer," I read, I loved these people, and they were inspirational. I loved their work.
"Yeah, my grandparents," Ezra said, wait, the Springers' were his family?!
"As in Springer Preservation Fund? Springer Endowment for the arts?"
"Guilty," He said taking my hand. I looked back and forth between him and the picture, I was shocked, amazed. His family was rich, and he was a teacher, getting paid minimum wage, living in a small apartment with little food. Why was he not asking for help?
He walked me into the exhibit, giving the ticket to the usher on our way in. As he walked me somewhere, I looked around, all these fancy things, fancy people, all these paintings and photos, and they were all put together by his family. I couldn't believe it, but it made sense, I mean his mom was wearing diamonds to just see his son, that screams rich and classy, I don't know how I didn't see it.
"Ezra, all this stuff belongs to your family?" I asked, finally, stopping Ezra at the bar so I could talk to him.
"Your family doesn't have money. Your family has money."
"Look…" He said taking me somewhere again. "I should have figured a way to tell you about this, but it's kind of hard to work into a conversation." He said and he finally stopped so he could face me.
"You were cutting off more than your last name when you went from Fitzgerald to Fitz."
"All this stuff, used to be in my grandparents' house, and the only people who saw it were my family and people they paid to clean up after them and they were fine with that, I'm not."
"I just always thought you never talked about your family because you didn't want them knowing about me."
"I wasn't keeping you away from my family; I was keeping my family away from you." He said, I sighed a big breath, I hadn't realized I was holding my breath. "Are you angry?"
"No…No, I don't think so, but I think you owe me for all those Raman noodles." I said as I took a step closer to him so I was right in front of him, his arms around my back. "I think we can negotiate that."
"Okay," He said, leaning down to kiss me.
*Ezra's Mom's POV*
As I was chattering away to a nice young man about some of the art I looked over and saw my son kissing that little girl. I hated that girl; she doesn't get to have my Ezra. I stopped mid sentence.
They obviously loved each other, and I was not okay with that.
As I was looking at a painting of a ballet and sipping my drink I was getting bored. Ezra was chatting with some people, and I wished he was over here.
I looked over and saw Ezra talking to some people. He looked sad and guilty that he was talking to some people while I was over here alone. I mouthed I was fine and turned back to the painting. Maybe I was a little bored and did want him over here, but I wasn't going to be selfish.
"You looked lonely over here." Ezra's mom said as she walked over here.
"Oh, I'm fine," I lied, again. "These are amazing."
"Ezra said that they belonged to your mom and dad."
"That's right," She said, "He hasn't told you very much about himself, has he?"
"Well, were still learning," I said, making up and excuse, I didn't want to mention that he just didn't want me to know about them.
"Yes," She said, nodding, "Well, you certainly know about the dedicated teacher, the struggling writer, you fit right into that world-you get to be the muse."
"Oh, no, I wouldn't pretend to be that."
"Don't diminish yourself, you have a very important role in this," She said. Wait, I was just a role in his life? No, I was more than that, I know it, we went through so many things for us to not mean a lot to each other.
"I just…I don't think of myself as playing any role with Ezra." I said, and I could see why Ezra wanted to keep me away from his family, they were rich, stuck-up, snobs.
"No, I don't suppose you do." She said, smiling, and I gave a fake smile back. "What do your parents think of Ezra?"
"Well, my mom likes him a lot more than my dad." I said to put it simple, I didn't want to lie, but I didn't want to tell her the truth either, I didn't want to give her another reason to not like me, because it was clear she didn't.
"Fathers and daughters- that can be tricky."
"New man to come along to take away daddy's little girl." She said, "Your parents are divorced, aren't they?"
"Yeah, yeah, they are."
"Guess you could say that."
"As recent as when you started seeing Ezra?" She said, accusingly. Why was she accusing me of something? I did nothing, Ezra choose to be with me. She needed to get over it, because she obviously didn't like us together or me at all. "Seeing him… romantically I mean."
"You ask questions like you already know the answers."
"It's very easy to find out what you need to know about people." She said, walking to the side.
"Oh, all- all due respect," I said, not meaning it one bit, I didn't care about respecting Ezra's parents. If they were nice, and Ezra was not ashamed of them, I would be, but they weren't. "But, my family's not really any of your business."
"Oh, but its such an interesting family. Your brothers arrest record, your romance with your former teacher, the way your mother moved out over your father's infidelity. You can literally chart all the cracks and strains."
I could handle it, everything she was saying about my family. Yes, my family had its problems, but so does everyone's. I mean maybe she should look at her own family. I mean, their son is embarrassed to be part of the family because of how stuck-up they are.
"Excuse me," I said, walking away.
"Aria," She said and I turned around. "You act as if I've hurt your feelings, it was unintentional." I couldn't say anything, it was obvious it was intentional, but maybe she was telling the truth, that small chance she was. "I just want to make sure I'm being clear. I may not agree with the way Ezra lives his life but I'm not gonna stand by and watch you ruin him."
I was not gonna ruin him! I am not ruining him! Aren't I? I mean, I'm the reason he got unemployed. Maybe I am ruining him? I was wanting so bad to fight for him, I was being selfish. I broke my parents up. I got Ezra fired from two jobs. I was ruining him. I was being incredibly selfish.
"I love him," I said, like that was some excuse, even though it wasn't. It wasn't an excuse for ruining his life along with my parent's marriage.
"Oh, yes, it's all romance and sacrifice in your little Paris garret. Except you get to determine what gets sacrificed, not him. You're the one who made it impossible for him to stay at your little high school. You're the one who got him kicked out of Hollis. I want to make sure you understand your own motives."
"I-I don't have any motives." I said and I wished what she was saying was wrong, but it wasn't, she was completely right, no matter how much I denied it.
"Everyone has motives."
"Maybe in your world," I said, officially angry.
"It's not too late for us to have a practical discussion. There can be real-world compensations in your ending this." She said, was she offering me money? She was stooping low enough to pay me for breaking up with Ezra. No amount of money would make me break up with him, we were happy. Just another reason I was being selfish, but I didn't care, yes, I did things, I got him fired from Rosewood High and Hollis, but he could've let me go, but he couldn't, even when he tried, he couldn't.
"Compensations?" I asked, I mean, maybe it would be worth it, Ezra's life wouldn't be ruined by me anymore.
"I've got your attention at last, I thought I might." She said, and I no longer wanted the money, this is what she wanted all along.
I walked away, pouring the last of my drink in a plant than putting it at the bar.
I looked for her everywhere. The last place I saw her was talking to my mom. I knew my mom said something to upset Aria, like she always does. I was sick of this, it was my life, and she needed to stop meddling in it. All I wanted was to be rid of my family, but try as I might, there's always something tying me to them.
"What did you say to her?" I said, turning a corner and seeing my mom.
"What did I say to whom?" She said, polite, pretending she did nothing wrong, when I know she did.
"I can't find Aria,"
"Oh, is she gone?"
"She was talking to you the last time I saw her."
"Maybe its past her bedtime,"
"Its astounding you can do things like this and still not understand why I want nothing to do with this family."
"I really don't know what you think I've done. I had a lovely chat with the girl. I don't know, maybe she fell out of place."
"You can endow all the museums you want, but you're not fooling anybody. There's not a generous bone in your body." I said and walked away to find Aria.
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