Silence. It was pure silence at the last minute. I stared back at Nicole who was shakingly holding a gun in her hand pointed at me. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t scared. I looked at her in pure shock, while I absently held the phone in my hand. Her piercing hazel eyes were cold that held anger. As if not minding her bare naked body being completely exposed to me, she shifted closer until we were inches away. She pushed the pistol towards my chest as she forcefully grabs the phone and holding it in her ear. Then after she surprised me when she pushed me down the bed and straddled me. The gun now slowly traveling up, stopping at my neck where my pulse was at.
“Don’t say a thing or I won’t hesitate to pull the trigger,” she said, making me gulp and nod in agreement.
After she spoke on the phone, I listen to the conversation.
Nicole wipes her dried tears and sweetly smiled as if the person whom she was talking to could hear her. “Hey, Jackson.”
Because of the awkward silence in the room, I was able to hear the boy speaking to Nicole.
“Mommy, where are you?” I heard him ask, his voice sounding like as if he was whining.
“I’m at a friends house sweety,” Nicole said. Her voice now sounding smooth unlike earlier. I brought my head up a bit but Nicole glared at me and pushed the pistol harder towards my beating pulse.
“Okay ouch, that hurt” I complained. Nicole simply gave another death glare before shifting her position a bit, which truly bothered me considering we were both naked, and that our position was something similar to what happened last night.
“No Jackson, you can’t go in there until I’m with you.”
I bit my lip, trying to suppress a moan out of my mouth. It failed when a small whimper escaped my lips when I felt Nicole moved a bit, making her faintly rub against me. That small touch just ignited something inside me and all I wished was to push myself up into her. Which sounded very wrong considering she was an enemy. More importantly, she had a gun pointed at me, while she talks to the small boy, whom I was very curious about.
It couldn’t be possible. Nicole was young. She was a teenager for goodness sake. Have I failed already when she gave birth an innocent child? I shook my head as I watched Nicole, now smiling and telling the boy to be careful and safe. And when the phone call ended, her ice-cold personality came back, making me want to sink further down the comfortable bed.
She looked at me with curious eyes as I had the nerve my bring my aching hands around her waist. Her facial expression now turning more bitter when I surprised myself by smiling.
“Wilson, are you wishing for death?” she crossed her arms, now staring back. I felt relief now that the gun was a bit farther away from me.
“My life will not go to waste until I have properly served you.” I shockingly heard myself say. Maybe it was the alcohol. Who goddamn knows anyway.
Nicole was silent for awhile until she burst out laughing. “Is this you trying to extend your life? Cause oh dear, I just can’t wait to blow yo-”
I caught her off when I slapped the pistol away and switched our positions. Her eyes widen in shock when I forced her arms up and gently bit her on the neck. It was a way to distract her. But of course, she tried to push me away. However, I fought back, now wanting answers.
“Is he yours?” I asked, now serious.
Nicole just gave me a sloppy smile and said, “My life is none of your business Sarah, so get the fuck off!
“Your life is my business because I promise your brother” I nearly yelled in response. She then stopped squirming under me, her mouth open.
Then she shook her head and scoffed, “Words that come out of your mouth are all lies”. Then she pushed me hard, enough for me to stumble back. But I didn’t give up. I wanted answers. So before she could get up, I pushed her back into the headboard and hissed.
“Who is the boy Nicole?!” I yelled, now angry and pissed. I was getting impatient. But I felt the sudden guiltiness when I caught a tear escaped her eyes. I softly brushed it away and lifted her chin up. She was a broken girl trying to be strong.
“Who is he?” I whispered. She tried giving me the same death glare as before, but it didn’t come off as threatening as before. She tried prying my hands away that locked her beneath me. I simply hugged her when she started throwing punches on my shoulders, until she broke down, now sobbing.
“He’s my son” I heard her sob. I felt her grip, now holding me tight. Wanting to comfort her, I hugged her back, listening to her painful cries. I found myself telling her comforting words, but I wonder if it was enough to fix a broken girl. And hours after crying, she fell asleep on my shoulder. Slowly and carefully, I gently positioned her comfortably down the bed. Pulling the covers up our body, I scooted right next to her, wanting to share the warmth. As I gently tuck a loose hair from her face, I wonder if I can ever still fulfill my promise to him.
Night had fallen. Hours had passed since Nicole passed out. I slowly got off the bed and started dressing. Gently, I picked up the pistol that ended up under the bed and tucked it inside my waistband. I didn’t want anyone interrogating Nicole when she wakes up. I had ordered a pizza box and drinks then set it on the nightstand. This way when she wakes up feeling hungry, she’s have something to eat. I contemplated whether to take a piece from the pizza box but then decided against it. She would probably take it home for Jackson.
Now standing in front of the hotel, I took one look back before walking home. I had paid for our stay and left a note for her to read, which I doubt she’ll read. Sleeping with Nicole was a mistake but it was an opportunity for her to open up to me. She was similar to Jessica, except she was more broken. I continued to stare straight ahead the empty streets, thinking about how I wrongly messed up Nicole already. And it was my determination to solve my own faults.
The day after I didn’t bother going to school. I was still hurt after seeing Jessica and Sabrina kiss. But I surely know that it was Sabrina’s doing. I knew her game and I didn’t want Jessica to end up hurting. I spend the whole day working, wanting to get distracted. My boss noticed and even asked if I was okay. But I simply told him that I was fine. During my break, I had the time to start thinking about my plan. Nicole was now my responsibility and even if she refuses, I’d still die just to be able to take care of her. Especially now that I’ve learned that there’s Jackson. I called the hotel and asked if Nicole had left, and she did.
“What am I going to do?” I sighed. I heard the soft cracking sounds of rocks being stepped on and I looked up to see my co-worker, Adrian standing next to me lighting up a cigarette which he offered.
I took the stick and took a huff before giving it back to him and releasing a cloud of smoke.
“What you got in mind kiddo?” he asks.
“Just some shit” I mumbled.
“Woah are you involved in drugs?” he laughed. I punched his arm softly and shook my head.
“Then what’s up?”
I rubbed my cheeks and thought of a way to explain Nicole and I’s situation but it was too complicated. “It’s too complicated.”
“Well then simplify it”
“Ugh. Okay, what would you do if um...uh. Let’s say you divorce someone who has a child and end up loving someone else. However knowing your child is still your responsibility, what would you do?” I said. I looked at him and found his expression confused as expected. “Never mind. That was really off.”
He simply laughed and said, “What kind of question is that?”
I sighed and decided to tell him everything. From the start where I made friends with Nicole and her brother, to returning from London and meeting Jessica and the others, and to my recent encounter with Nicole that includes finding out about Jackson. I told him every single detail. After I saw Adrian’s face looking surprised as ever.
I nodded “I know”
“That’s so fucked up”
“Oh my god”
“Are you going to say something or not cause my break is almost over and you’re not being a help.” I said irritated. Adrian smiled and then handed me his remaining pack of smoke.
“You need to act on your promise, now knowing Nicole’s condition”
I sighed, but I did agree. “What I thought so. By the way, why are you giving this to me?” I asked, showing him the pack of cigarettes he threw at me.
“You’ll need it more than I do.” I smiled at him and watched as he walked back. But before he went inside, he called out once again.“Oh and Sarah. Man up. I mean woman up and tell her your feelings”
I laughed at him and shooed him away before lighting up another cigarette.
Today was the second last day before Christmas break. This morning I looked for Nicole but found her nowhere. I wanted to talk to her since then. So, here I walked down the parking lot, heading towards her so-called of a group of friends. They met my eyes, some glaring and some curious as to why I was there. A tall guy comes forward and faces me. I felt no need to be threatened since I was only there to ask a question unless they give me a reason to beat them up again.I was few inches shorter than the bulky guy but I wasn’t scared.
“Where is Nicole?” I asked arms crossed while staring at the guy.
The dude simply scoffed, “Why would I tell you?”
I shook my head. There was no time for questions. “Where is she?”
But they didn’t respond. They simply looked at me as if I was a fool. And that angered me. I was getting more impatient than ever. Before I could reach up for his throat, I heard a familiar sound of a motorbike stop behind us, making me turn around.
I watched as Nicole gracefully took her helmet off, her hair swaying side by side as she shook her head. Then she turned her head towards our way and found her eyes looking at me.
“Nicole” I called out. She got off and then motioned something behind. As she approached, I felt two arms pulling me back, locking my hands around their strong bulky arms. I grunted in pain and tried shaking them away.
Nicole smirked before leaning in closer, “Where is it Wilson?”
“What are you talking about?” I asked confused.
“Not until you let meet Jackson” I heard them gasp as if surprised that I was well aware of her son.
“You’re not meeting him. You hear me?!” she gripped my throat, cutting off my air supply. She held onto it tight until my face turned red and I felt my energy being taken away from me. My legs collapsed as no oxygen went in. Before I could pass out, we heard someone cough and say stop.
Carly stood there, holding her binder. Nicole simply pushed me down the ground. They left, leaving me gasping for air and attempting to control my anger as I stop myself from coughing anymore. It was going to be harder to get Nicole. I felt Carly’s hands touched my cheek to inspect for any damage in my face, but I simply brushed her hand away, just as I had done to everyone else.
“Leave me,” I said before standing up and rushing to get inside, not bothering to wait for her presence.
Lunch came and I felt guilty leaving Carly behind after calming down. She helped me but I simply pushed her away. I asked London for Carly to forgive me but she insisted that I do it myself.
“Come on just tell her,” I told London over the phone.
“Dude why me? I’m busy okay?”
“Busy on what?”
I heard her groan, “Presents. Planning and shit.”
“Oh.” Right. Christmas is soon.
“Just go buy her a gift for Christmas. Insert an apology letter then tada! You’re done.”
“But I don’t know what to buy,” I said.
“Ugh. Okay, I’ll try and scoop an information. Also, I’m expecting a gift for me. Okay? Bye sissy” Before I could reply, she hung up on me.
Great. Christmas. Wooo~ Not excited at all. What’s so special about Christmas anyway? They say its the Lord’s birthday. Pftt, as if. They should be gifting the lord or whatever, not each other. It was stupid. Thinking of it, I needed to come up with a present for them. Ah, I promised to come back for JR to the orphanage too. I needed to give something to that cute lil boy.
I never saw Nicole after. When lunch came, two people caught my attention. It was Jessica and Sabrina. I could tell Jessica was trying to avoid Sabrina, but Sabrina wouldn’t let go. I thought of interfering but then Sab caught up and stopped Jesse. I watched by the shadows and listened to their conversation, suddenly feeling jealous.
“Jessica I know you’re avoiding me” I heard Sabrina say.
“I-I don’t know what you’re talking about” Jessica replied. Ah, it was probably because of the kiss.
“It’s because of what happened right?”
Ding ding ding. I’m right.
Not wanting to hear Sabrina’s fake sincere voice of apology or possible protest of admiration, I turned the other way and proceeded to go down the hallways. But then I heard Jessica call out.
Oh shit. I remembered. I never answered any of her phone calls and messages. But I had a good reason. I was hurt yes. Jessica... Jessica was different. But she and I shared the same pain of our pasts. Not only that. I secretly had a thing for nerds, trust me. Well, cute nerds like her. She was also the first person whom I randomly opened up to. I smiled bitterly, as I remember that time where we shared our own stories. She made me fall her, even more, when I saw her interact with kids. I was surprised when she agreed to come with me to the orphanage. My therapist even agreed that she may be the answer to cure my depression. It was true. Whenever I was with Jessica, all thoughts fly away and I all I could focus on were her sweet smiles and rare laughs.
“Sarah...” I heard her pant but I kept walking.
I remember our kiss. It was bitterly sweet but it was enough to erase my problems temporarily. No cigarette can cure my pain except her. Jessica was kind, sweet, and a loving person. You will only notice that once you got to know her. I was thankful for meeting Jessica. There were a lot of things that I learned from her.
“Sarah please stop”. Jessica panted. We were already outside, rain pouring down. I was soaked, wet, and now feeling cold.
One thing I particular was hope. Jessica was an example. She showed me hope when she didn’t give up. I admired her for being strong, even when inside, I knew that she was fragile.
“Sarah... Look at me. Why are you avoiding?” Jessica asked. The same question Sabrina asked her earlier.
I turned and stared at her eyes. So beautiful and pure. I didn’t notice my tears until I felt them, falling down my face. But I hoped that she didn’t notice my weakening state.
“Why did you run away when you saw me and Sabrina?” I heard her ask. She was panting, shivering. But my tongue could no longer speak. It felt as if someone cut it, as I try to voice out my thoughts.
The most important thing that I learned from Jessica was love. It was a word that came unknown to me until I met her. The darkness in me started faded away until I came to knew this word and learned what it is. Love was the answer. It was the cure. Love will let you control your anger. It will vanish the demons and desires inside of you.
Many people have different meanings and opinions towards love. Before, love was nothing but an imaginary feeling that blinded humans. At the same time, love can be an enemy for it will build up the obsession of wanting someone, which may lead to wrong desires and actions. As for me, love was simply the feeling of coming home. And I don’t care if she was fragile.
My god the rush I get when she laughs. Chills run down my spine. I became so fond of life when I began to hold my breath when she comes close for I am afraid that my lips will open up to reveal everything that I’ve wanted to tell her.
“It’s because I love you! I fucking love you okay?!” I yelled, then closed my eyes not wanting to see her, afraid of what she’ll say.
Because I don’t want you to run when I tell you I’ve dreamt of you every night this week and I just can’t get my mind to stop running.
“Oh no you ain’t escaping child. Give the chips to me first” I said stubbornly. The kid then looked at me and not a minute after, it started crying. The hell?
“M-mommy” It cried.
“Dude stop. Just give me the damn chips” I groaned.
Then after, I felt a sudden chill down my spine when I felt someone’s hands rested on my neck, holding tightly into it.