Perfect Illusion

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Chapter 30: Maybe

“Did anyone see him?” I ask when I’m in Cara’s car. Since Daniel had decided to ditch me, I had to beg Cara to drive me back home after the party is over.

It’s about 2 in the morning, and I’m fucking exhausted. I think Cara feels the same way judging from the way her hands always slip from the driving wheel.

I think I should have gotten a designated driver to send me home.

“What are you talking about?” Cara yawns. She’s not wearing her witch hat anymore. That’s because the tip of the hat kept poking against the top of the car and it got really annoying. So, it got thrown to the backseat of the car.

“Daniel. Did anyone see him when he left with those girls?” I say, concerned. After anyone saw him and knew who he was...

It will be all over the news by morning.

“I don’t think so,” my best friend answers after a while. “I think everyone was too drunk to notice.”

I breathe a sigh of relief. “Thank god.”

“Why do you sound so calm about it?” She turns to look at me briefly. “Don’t you want to like… I don’t know... cut his balls off or something?”

“I want to, so badly. You have no idea. But I can’t,” I sigh against the seat. “I did something bad too.”

“You had sex with Nate.” She confirms.

“What? NO.” I gasp, horrified when Cara says that. She laughs. “Kidding. I know the both of you only kissed.”

“Nevertheless, Daniel and I both broke the rule.” I say.

“The rule in which you guys can’t get involved with other people?” She prods.

I nod my head.

“Is it such a bad thing, though?” She pouts.

“Uh, Duh. If the media gets a hold of this-” I start off but she cuts me off.

“Yeah yeah I know... the both of you will be dead.” Cara says, “but didn’t you agreed to see Nate romantically in secret? I mean, Daniel can do that too. The both of you just have to be careful.”

“Yeah... I’m starting to regret the whole secret relationship with Nate.” I confess, “I don’t want to get caught. This will look really bad for Daniel and I.”

“Then don’t get caught,” she casts me a small smile, “Sure it’s risky, but you can’t just be a fucking nun for the next three years with Daniel. You got to have a little fun, too right?”

“I guess...?”

“So, there you have it. Go have fun with Nate.”

I arch an eyebrow. “So you’re totally okay with Nate and I being… You know. Together.”

“Honestly, I don’t really see the both of you together in the long run or whatever. You probably won’t get married to him or have children and all that-”

“Whoa.” I whistle. “That’s... We’re just seeing how it goes. What you’re saying is going further than that.”

She gives me the look. “I know. That’s what I’m trying to say. That it won’t go further than that. Your relationship with Nate will probably crash and burn.” She shrugs, “sorry, Alex. It’s the truth. Don’t get me wrong, I know you and Nate are super into each other and everything, but you are meant for someone else.”

“And who would that be?” I tease.

“Daniel, of course.” She winks at me as she pulls into the parking lot.

I roll my eyes.

“But since you’re too god dammed blind to see your true feelings for Daniel, go ahead and test the waters with Nate. Have fun with him.” She smiles at me. “Have fun while it lasts.”

The penthouse is dead silent. Which means that no one is home.

Releasing a deep sigh, I set my keys on the table and fall into the silence. It’s a weird silence.

Most of the time when I come back, Daniel’s always waiting for me by the couch, watching his movies or he’s busy on his laptop. Either way, the minute I walk through the door, he will always have this toothy grin on his face. Sometimes, it’s annoying.

But times like this, I miss it.

I miss him.

I hate that feeling. I hate that I miss him. His stupid grins, and his stupid face. His stupid laptop laying on the kitchen counter. His stupid dishes in the sink that he never cleans. His stupid CDs that are always seen scattered all over the coffee table. His stupid guitar laying by his door. His stupid room.

Stupid stupid Daniel.

I drop myself on the couch, wrapping my arms around myself, wrapping myself in the deafening silence that consumes this entire room. Seconds turn to minutes and minutes turn to hours. Eventually, I realize I’m just wasting my time. Wasting my time doing what?

Waiting for him to walk through that door?

How pathetic of me.

I get up to go to my room to retrieve my laptop. I should do something useful. I open my ‘Blankets’ file on Scrivener and click on a new chapter. I should write. Yes. I should. My fingers linger on the keyboard, hovering over the keys, thinking of what to write.

I start typing.

I come up with bullshit.

This is the worst thing I have ever written. The words I’ve typed don’t even go together to form a legit sentence. It’s two paragraphs of pure bullshit. If my lecturer saw this, she would kick me out of her class immediately.

Get yourself together, Alex! My mind screams at me.

So I try. Again and again. I delete my first draft and write another one. It’s just as shitty as the first one so I delete the second one. Then, I start on a third. I’m making progress but it isn’t enough. Delete delete delete. I start on a fourth draft. Then another. And another.

It gets easier because I’m no longer thinking about Daniel.

It’s 6am and I’m haven’t even slept yet. I’m still writing. I’m halfway through my latest draft when I hear rustling outside. Someone fumbling for his keys.



He rattles the doorknob, and eventually the door flies open. I don’t turn around to look at him. I want to but I don’t. I hear him throw his keys into the basket on the counter, and I hear his footsteps drawing closer to me. It gets louder.




He’s right behind me. My fingers pretend to fly over the keyboard, pretending that I’m writing, when really, I just want to turn over and greet him with a smile. Why don’t I do that?

Oh right. I’m a pussy.

I’m so afraid that when I look Daniel in the eye, I will see it. The guilt that lay in his eyes when he slept with those girls. The guilt he will see in mine when he finds out I kissed Nate, and that I agreed to see him romantically.

I feel his weight press down on the back of the sofa, inches away from me. I inhale deeply, wondering what he’s going to do.

Maybe he’ll say good morning. Maybe he’ll tell me where did he go. Maybe he’ll yell at me.

I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know.

I feel his presence weigh me down a ton. One of his fingers hover over my shoulder, ready to tap it. Maybe I can do this. Maybe I can talk to him.

His finger still hovers. It doesn’t make contact with my shoulder.

My heart’s slamming against my chest wildly.

I wait and wait and wait.

Nothing happens.

Eventually, he sighs and pulls away from me. Then, he walks away.

Maybe... just maybe, he’s walking away from me forever.

And maybe... just maybe

I let him.

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