I took the glass of champagne and made my way towards the man who has decided to empty every bottle of alcohol available in the bar.
“Hi”. I said.
“Hi, princess,” Jake replied in his husky voice.
My hands tightened around the glass I was holding.
I didn’t know why but I have always loved it when he calls me princess.
My eyes searched his face to find any traces of old Jake, the one who would always laugh and made bad jokes to make everyone laugh around him.
I remember asking him why he make people laugh and he said, it’s better to make people laugh then make them cry.
The Jake I had a crush on wasn’t like this man who looked hollow from inside and still handsome from outside. The youthfulness of his age was hidden by the five o’clock shadow on his face. But he still looks as attractive as before, maybe even more. The fitted black tux and lose black tie around his neck was making him look sexier than any other man in the wedding. I wish I had my camera with me and I could take his pictures without him knowing.
I knew he was coming here to attend the wedding because Brandon threatened him that if he wouldn’t come himself, Brandon will come to get him personally.
“How has been life in past six years?” I asked him.
“Cruel”. He replied taking a sip of whiskey from his glass.
He didn’t look at me once and I knew why.
“You should start a new life”. I said, feeling my heart bleed at the pain on his face remembering the memories of last six years.
“It’s not that easy, Elena”. He said turning to face first time.
“It is not easy but you can try”. I whispered.
“I don’t want to try”. Jake said downing the remaining whiskey in his glass.
He turned around to leave but when Noah announced its bride and groom first dance he stopped.
Everyone stopped and stared at Brandon and Madeline swaying on Ed Sheeran song “thinking out loud”.
Jake was distracted at that moment staring at Brandon and Madeline.
I took that as a chance to hold his hand in mine, lacing my fingers and gripping his hand so he wouldn’t leave.
My eyes went back to his face; his blue eyes were looking at Brandon and Madeline like he was happy yet sad for some reasons that no one knows.
Brandon and Madeline stopped dancing and Noah invited other guests to join them.
I saw my dad dragging mom to the dance floor and it made me smile.
Noah took Alyssa’s hand and started swaying. I could see how shyly she was swaying in my brother’s arm.
Then I felt the tug on my hand and realized Jake wants my attention.
“Will you dance with me? You cannot say no to your princess. Can you?” I said, pleading to heaven above that he will stay for some time longer.
He shook his head at me with the broad smile on his face.
“You are still as stubborn as you were six years ago”. Jake said taking my hand and walking us towards the dance floor.
I put my hands on his shoulder and he placed his hands on my waist. We were on dance floor with other couples dancing around but I didn’t even notice them. My eyes were fixed on his face.
“You haven’t change as well. You still don’t know how to say no to me”. I whispered in his ear.
He stared at my eyes for few seconds then cleared his throat.
We started to sway on the music enjoying the few moments with each other.
“How long are you staying?” I asked him.
“I am staying here for few months. Dad’s office needs some attention”. Jake replied.
“Where are you staying?” I asked him.
“I’m staying at my parents’ house”. Jake said.
Unintentionally, his hand touched my bare back and butterflies exploded in my stomach.
He removed his hand before I could relish in the feeling of his cold hand on skin.
“I’m sorry”. Jake mumbled.
I felt stupid for not believing my twin brother when he said Jake has no idea that I have a crush on him. I guess he knows how to read people better than me.
“It’s fine”. I said taking a step closer to him and wrapping my arms around his neck.
Jake looked uncomfortable at the closeness of our bodies and it pained me to see him moving away from me.
“I think I should leave, Elena”. He said.
My name sounded foreign from lips. I was so used to hearing him call me princess that my own name coming from his mouth feels strange.
I nodded my head then kissed his cheek, like I used to do when I was kid when he would give me my favorite chocolates.
Jake looked little shock and somewhat flustered. He opened his mouth to say something but decided to leave without saying anything.
I was staring at the retreating figure of Jake when I felt a tap on my shoulder. I turned around to see Eric looking at me with the silly grin on his face.
“May I have this dance, princess?” He said taking my hand and twirling me around.
“I don’t like your stupid moves, Eric. Sway your body slowly and please, try not to embarrass us in front of everyone”. I said to my brother making him grin.
“I am not that bad of a dancer. I assure my crush wouldn’t run off after having one dance with me”. Erin said.
I glared at him and stepped on his shoe. He hissed in pain but covered it with tight lip smile.
“He was sad, Erin”. I told him.
“You and I don’t know how it feel when you lose the one you love”. Eric said.
“I have eyes and I can see when someone is in pain, it has nothing to do with experience”. I said to him.
“I have eyes too and I suggest you stay away from him else you will end up like him, in pain”. Eric said leaving me on the dance floor.
I moved away from the dance floor and started to think if Jake is worth of all the pain I will endure to make him mine.
I woke up with the jolt and looked around.
Was I dreaming? Did I dance with Jake in the wedding?
My eyes landed on the dress I wore in wedding which was on the chair in my room and I got up from.
It was real! We danced yesterday and he was here.
I jumped with excitement and screamed with the bubbling happiness then my eyes landed on the time, it was nine in the morning.
Why am I awake so early? I groaned in annoyance but then an idea popped in my head.
I went into washroom and showered then dried my hair. I pulled out my jeans high-waisted shorts, paired it with white V- neck crop top and black and blue floral kimono.
Slowly, I made my way downstairs and sneaked inside the kitchen. Everyone was still tired after yesterday’s wedding dinner and sleeping soundly, it made my work easy. I prepared pancakes and put them in a box then took out the small paper bag from the cabinet. I put the maple syrup with the box of pancakes in it and took the keys of the door.
After putting my jacket on, I sneaked out of the house and crossed the street. I walked towards the direction of Carter’s residence which happened to be two streets away from my house. I pressed the bell when I arrived outside his house.
I was nervous, my hands were shaking and I was tapping my foot on the ground impatiently. I waited for minutes and pressed the bell again, but Jake didn’t come out.
I have keys of his house because after his father died three years ago, Mrs. Carter left this house to go on a world tour with her fiancé. She asked my mom to keep the keys of the house and assigned the care taker. My mom and they were friends so my mom did it for her.
I took those keys out and unlocked the door then went inside. I shut the door and looked around. The house was dead silent and everything seems untouched, clean. I put the paper bag on the kitchen counter and made my way upstairs to Jake room.
This is wrong Elena. My conscience was telling me repeatedly how wrong it was.
But it’s Jake, he is not a stranger. I reasoned with myself.
I pushed open his bedroom door and my heart started to beat faster.
His coat was on the floor along with his tie, his shirt was thrown on the chair and pants were lying on the floor at the bottom of the bed. There was an empty bottle of wine on nightstand and night lamp was still on. The curtains were open and sunlight was falling in room.
My eyes went to the bed where Jake was sleeping on his stomach, his glorious back was in my view.
Without thinking much, I picked up his coat; tie and pants then put them on the chair while staring at him. He looked like an angel, the sunlight was falling on his bare back and I could see it glowing. His legs were covered with white comforter.
You should leave, Elena. You’re acting as a creep, get out! My inner voice yelled at me.
He wouldn’t even know that I am here. Sheesh! Let me look. I said to myself and took the step near to the bed.
My eyes landed on his sculptured face and I sucked in a breath. His chestnut color hair was messy, falling on his forehead and his sharp jaw was taut, like he was dreaming something that was making him angry. He was holding something in his hand. I slowly took it from him and looked at it. It was a picture, he was standing with the beautiful black hair and brown color eyed girl, and both of them were smiling like they were genuinely happy. My heart ached for Jake.
Yes, I always wanted him for myself but after looking at this picture, I wished that I could do something to bring her back to him.
I put the picture on his nightstand and placed my hand on his forehead to push his hair back. I wasn’t expecting him to take hold of my wrist and pull me on the bed.