Chapter 56: Yearn
Unravel Him Playlist on Spotify.
Song; (Atis Freivalds- For her) & (Jennifer Lopez- Feel the Light) & (Atis Freivalds- You and me)
“Wait for me,”
“No matter what happens...”
“Please, wait for me.”
The timing is impeccable, it was practically amazing.
Still, that didn’t change that I wanted to kill him.
Oh no, that’s not a caution it’s a fact.
It is a goddamn vow.
“No.” I glare, indicating to him that my foot is still on the chair and I’m still inches away from his crotch.
He looks down between us, to my boot that rests comfortably between his spread legs. “This... is familiar.”
I’m sure it was.
It isn’t the first time I’ve threatened to kick him in the balls and I find myself wondering if I should make do with it. “You don’t get to talk.”
“We’re both adults here, let’s go about this civilly-” He raises one hand.
“Civilly...” As a point, I nudge my foot forward until it touches the zipper of his slacks. “Do you think you’re in any position to tell me what to do, bloodsucker?”
The nickname roll off my tongue with ease, almost too naturally.
I haven’t had to use it in a while.
The fact that I did, proves the man sitting before me isn’t a mirage, he’s real.
Thomas is here, he’s back.
I’m distracted by my own thoughts that I hadn’t realized his fingers as they slowly graze the back of my leg, applying just the smallest amount of pressure.
“What are you...” My trajectory changed instantly, becoming lost with the sensation of his touch and the growing heat beneath my jeans.
It feels good.
It feels so, so good.
Until I rip myself out of it and practically stumbled away.
How can he still affect me like this?
I’ve retreated a considerable distance, afraid the tension in the air might wrap around us, further.
His expression twists with displeasure, stemming from my clear wariness of him.
He doesn’t like that I’ve shied away from his touch, he makes it very clear, by how he opens his mouth to say something.
“Don’t give me that look,” I speak before he can, narrowing my gaze. “You don’t get a say in how I act around you,”
Thomas does something surprising.
He becomes uncertain.
That sharp gaze softened into fear.
After all these months, after all this time, why was he feeling like this now?
Why not two months ago, three, four, why not then?
What gave him the right to look at me like that? Like he wants to touch me, hold me... Even without saying it out loud, he yearns for it.
My heart thumped in my chest and my cheeks flared.
No, no, I won’t be swayed.
“You look...” Clearing my throat, I nodded in disgruntlement and observe his neat-clad figure with one sweep. “...good.”
Healthy. He looks, healthy.
That wasn’t a lie, as much as I wanted to bad mouth him otherwise...
“Appearances can be deceiving.” Came his deep voice, sounding awfully sarcastic.
We fell in silence, the two of us being the only ones in the crowd that didn’t seem to be enjoying ourselves between the dancing limbs and the drunkards.
It would have been better if we were part of the crowd than not at all. We stuck out like a sore thumb.
So much so that instinct made me react.
I feel eyes on me.
A man stands just a few meters away to my side. He’s dark-skinned, with black hair braided tightly into cornrows that tie up into a ponytail.
His jaw is chiseled, his eyes are dark and exotic, I spot a slash of black ink peeking out from his left neck.
The way he stood, the way he carried himself, it feels regal.
He was also watching us.
“Is that your guard?” I muse to Thomas.
He frowns and lifts his head over to where I’m looking. The look that floods his face, speaks of annoyance.
His fiancee’s sibling.
So the Princess and Thomas were close enough now, to get the family involved.
Of course, why would that matter? He’s going to be part of the family, it isn’t weird that Ziarah’s brother would be with Thomas.
My, direct family was either dead or missing.
The thought makes me bitter.
I shouldn’t be jealous of stupid things.
Slipping the jacket over my shoulders, I roll up the collars to my neck and bow at the heir of Graymoore. “Congratulations on your engagement, Mr Moore.”
Thomas raises an eyebrow at the sudden formality.
I stare at him, not giving anything away.
To the outside eye, I sounded professional, I was simply treating Thomas as any other customer, but if they looked closer, if they understood the meaning behind my words, they’d know it was anything but professional.
It was a threat.
"Please, don’t strain yourself,” I slip the hood up, covering my hair and move to leave. “I’ll get Maya to bring more bottles-”
“Wait.” He grazes my shoulder with his hand, making me twist away, queasy.
It still feels so surreal.
He really is back...
It doesn’t change anything.
“You’re here,” He swallows hard and shifts his hand to his side, determined to change the tides with how things are going. “What are you doing here?”
I tilt my head, frowning, but got straight to the point. “This is my club.”
“Your club?” He gazes at the emblem shinning on the ceiling, briefly.
"Skuro belongs to us.”
The heir of Graymoore is frazzled.
My appearance had dazed him and I don’t blame him for being slow. He isn’t sure what is left to right having been gone for a year. He doesn’t know what the others and I have been up to so its no shock he’s... lost.
It nearly makes me pity him.
It’s funny, I’ve always imagined what it’d be like if we meet up again after all these months.
Would it be bittersweet? Would I’d cry with relief? Would I run to his arms and never let go?
I realize I’m not ready for this. “If you need anything else, your host will assist you.”
“Have a good night, Mr Moore.”
Spinning on my heel, I exit towards the bar and bring a hand to my temple, rubbing it slightly when I feel my skin, flush.
The world is spinning.
My head feels heavy.
This was probably the news Hailey wanted to tell me; that Thomas was in New York and the company let her rest because their future CEO is back and she didn’t have to work double-time.
What a joke.
Tonight was so incredibly bad, it was baffling.
Why was he back? Why now? Why when things just went to shit?
Rubbing my eyelids in exhaustion, I spot Benji by the bar eyeing me with concern. He waves me over but stops when he sees something behind me.
More like, someone.
A terrible aura is looming on the horizon.
I don’t know why I thought he’d leave it be.
“Great,” I mutter bitterly.
Thomas had followed after me, pushing people aside without a care in the world and ignoring how his party called out to him in confusion.
He could hardly give a shit.
His gaze is set and his intention is clear.
Still so stubborn, I inwardly smile.
However, I knew if I stayed any longer, I’d surely implode or worse, be forced to converse with him.
I’ve neither the energy nor the temper to match it as the after-effects of tonight has truly beaten me down.
I just wanted to go home and sleep... and punch him in the face if he so much as touches me.
Sitting down on the barstool, I give Benji a sarcastic smile to his greeting and rest my head on the palm of my hand. “Water please,”
He nods and steps away to get me a cup, eyes still on the ever-approaching-Thomas Moore.
“Here you go,” Benji slides the plastic cup across the bar and I reach for it, slowly sipping the refreshing liquid.
Thomas sits down on the barstool next to mine. His gaze is fixed on the alcoholic beverages up on the racks and I know he’s searching for something to say.
I finish the cup of water and hand it back to Benji.
“This guy bothering you, Boss?” He takes it from me and gestures to Thomas who raises his head in attention, one eyebrow raised, daring the other male otherwise.
Right, it’s going to be an all-out brawl fight if I let these two go at it.
“Get him bourbon on the rocks,” I tap a fingernail on the bar, firm with my tone. “He’ll leave me be soon.”
Benji frowns but does as I say, gathering a glass for Thomas and filling it with alcohol. He practically slams the thing on the bar, hostility clear.
“You wanna go, asshole?” Thomas grits his teeth.
My bartender ignores him completely. “Say the word, I’ll have him escorted out-”
Placing a hand on his forearm, I squeezed lightly, enough to inform the male that I don’t want any trouble. I can handle it if things go awry.
He huffs beneath his breath and deals a final glare at Thomas. “I’ll keep an eye on things, then.”
I nod in appreciation and watch him disappear down the bar to take orders from the other customers. It reminds me of my men and how protective they are.
Warmth, blossom in my chest.
“Get back to your entourage,” Taking a napkin from beneath the bar, I folded the tissue and swipe my injured palm.
The blood is now dried and the pain is dull. “They will be wondering where their bachelor went.”
Images of the Ziarah’s brother popped in my head.
“You look like you’ve enjoyed yourself.” Thomas takes the glass of bourbon and sips it, completely ignoring my earlier statement.
“Appearances can be deceiving,” I repeat his words.
“I didn’t think you’ve become a showgirl,” He shakes his head, snorting. “What, this place isn’t paying you enough?”
Really? Does he want to do this now?
He’s clearly pissed about my on-stage dancing earlier, which he had absolutely no right to criticize.
“You didn’t enjoy the show?” Smiling cynically, I grab another napkin and wrap the thing around my palm. “I remember a time when you did,”
“I remember a time when you didn’t throw yourself to every man, woman out there.” He growls, slamming the now empty glass of bourbon on the bar.
I tilt my head. “Is that what you think I was doing?”
Thomas doesn’t respond, he simply takes the ice cube from the glass and chews it haphazardly.
For several seconds, the ice cube crunching in his teeth is all I hear from him.
I use the silence to my advantage and reach over the bar for the bottle of bourbon.
He slides his empty glass over so I can pour a decent amount of alcohol halfway.
Our actions are awfully familiar that I don’t realize we’ve gone back to our usual nature when we’re around one another.
I’m reminded that it was one of the reasons we’ve worked so well together in the first place.
“You’ve been busy,” He tells me as I hand his glass back.
I clasp the bourbon bottle and tuck it beneath the bar. “We had a lot of things left to do, none of us had a choice.”
“We...?” He turns slightly, edging his figure forward.
Even through the chatter of the crowd, loud music, and flashing lights, I still spot the demand in those eyes.
He was never good at asking politely was he?
He was a nonsensical type of man.
Smiling to myself, I crumpled the leftover napkin in front of me. “Yes, we... did you think we’d go our separate ways after you left, Thomas?”
He doesn’t meet my gaze.
“...or did you simply forget about the others?” I added.
This is familiar.
The roles are reversed, Thomas is now in my former position, I’m asking him the same thing he had asked me.
“I didn’t forget.” Something dark crosses his face.
“Yes... of course, you didn’t.” Using the bar for support, I twine myself around and rest one foot on the ground. “You’d never be able to forget friendships like that-”
His hand shot up, latching onto my wrist, pinning it against the bar.
"Don’t patronize me.”
The glint from his finger catches my attention. It’s a silver band. A ring. My stomach sinks in further.
“I’ve never liked that-” Thomas leans forward, forcing us close, our knees barely touching. “-you didn’t either.”
Anyone else would be afraid.
This anger, this tension, this other side of Thomas that I knew so well, had my heart screaming.
I can feel it in my chest, deep in the soul, the cracks that appeared when he first left, tethering between breaking into a thousand pieces or mending itself back together.
That’s what I feel.
I was afraid that he’d change when he left, that perhaps he truly did forget about us, forget about me.
One year is a long time.
He’s spent more than enough time with his fiancee.
A lot of things could have happened.
Images of him holding her, kissing her, and taking her to bed, flash in my mind.
I’m going to snap.
“Let me go.”
He was still holding my hand. I don’t think he realized what he did, it must have been instinctive, stemming from something deep down inside him that knows I am, familiar.
“I’m going to count to three,” I held in a breath, steadying myself.
Thomas’s blue-green eyes, narrowed in confusion, then look down to our fingers, the one he had pinned.
His features soften, taking on a new type of tone.
I see the sudden change as he relaxes his grip, turning gentle, placid, and kind, slowly curving the edges of my wrist, sparking warmth.
The touch is endearing... it speaks of many things; I’m someone dear to him, I’m someone he knows, body and soul.
I’m someone that’s going to lose my shit.
He flips our palms over and interlocks our fingers. The skin against skin is nostalgic, familiar, and just before he speaks-
I clock him in the face, aiming high and true.
“Motherfucker-” He releases our hands.
My punch had landed on his right cheek, packing enough force that Thomas stumbles in his chair and knocks over the glass of bourbon.
I lean back and picked up the spilled glass. "Goddamn, I’ve been waiting for months to do that.”
“Jesus Christ!” He rubbed at the probable bruise, one that will surely show tomorrow. I spot blood, his teeth must have snagged against his lip.
The looks from customers around us, makes me raise an eyebrow.
They are pointing and murmuring, viewing our interaction with curiosity and concern.
I almost wondered why, until I look back to Thomas and his bruised face and realized most of the Club had just seen the heir of Graymoore get punched in the face by a random girl.
Right, we were in public, of course, he’d be recognized.
I held back a grin.
“Why...?” Thomas is glaring angrily at me, hands on the bar, body poised to attack.
“Does it hurt?”
“How the fuck could it not?”
“I don’t know.” Shrugging my shoulders, I glance at the cup in pity, glad that my hood was up. “I was thinking of aiming for your dick this time.”
“If my dick stops working, I won’t be able to fuck you.”
He wouldn’t be able to fuck his fiancee either.
That’s the plan.
“To be honest, I don’t remember much of it, must’ve been forgettable.”
That was a lie, I practically dreamed about it sometimes. It was enough to get a girl all hot and bothered.
I can’t remember the number of times I’ve woken up in the middle of the night with my breath in my throat and my heart beating in my chest.
That, sheer need for release and euphoria, only to be taken away when reality hits and I realize I’ve just been dreaming.
I’m abruptly torn away when he snatches at my chin, forcing me to meet his ticked-off expression.
“Find a room, I’ll give you a reminder.”
This irritating, man. “I’ll hit you again,”
“Then, do it,” Thomas leans forward, mouth closing near my ear, fingers light on my skin. “Curse me, hurt me, bite me, do whatever you want, I deserve all of it.”
Why... why did he have to do that?
It’s not fair.
I’m mad at him, I’m disgusted by him, I hate him, but I know beneath that hard gaze, beneath that sultry tone, he is apologetic, he is sad, he’s fucking my emotions up all over again.
“I’m so... mad at you.” I find myself saying, words a mere whisper.
The frown on his face softens. “I know.”
“I want to kill you.”
“I want to strangle you, drown you and bury you alive all at once.”
He chuckles. “I know, Ginger.”
No. He doesn’t. He doesn’t know, he doesn’t get it, he knows, nothing.
“Don’t make me do it.” Slipping away from his grip, I let my head fall, lips trembling. “Don’t make me touch you, I can’t bear it.”
“Everything’s changed, don’t you get it?”
I’ve had enough.
I’ve had enough of his words, I’ve had enough of his hope, I’ve had enough of everything.
“You’re getting married, Thomas.” My knuckles are turning white from holding the empty glass too tight. I have yet to meet his eyes, knowing that if I do, I might just fall apart. “You’re engaged to another woman.”
He’ll leave me, start a family, have kids...
There’s a selfish part of me that wants to reach for him, hold him close and never let go.
Thomas belongs to me, he’s mine, he’s my heart and my soul, he’s who I yearn to see every morning when I wake up.
But I can’t do that because there’s a wall between us, a wall so fragile, so breakable, that one wrong move and chaos will ensue.
“Please, wait for me.”
He shouldn’t have made promises, he shouldn’t have made vows, he shouldn’t have done anything-
He shouldn’t have come back.
A figure shifts in the crowd just behind Thomas.
Dark eyes watch us intently.
Ziarah’s brother, the Prince.
I can tell he doesn’t like me with how he glares at me with hawk-like tendencies. I’ve been deemed a threat.
I almost wanted to laugh.
“You should’ve left me with Jonas.” Not the truth, but a statement meant to hurt. I stood up from my seat and threw the crumpled napkin behind the counter. “At least that way, I wouldn’t have to deal with this shit-”
“Where are you going?” Thomas gets up, sensing I’m about to leave.
“I’m getting out of here before your guard decides I’m a danger to you.”
He turns behind him, making eye contact with the dark male and curses out loud.
By the time Thomas turns back, I’ve already left the area, heading towards the back door.
The smart move for him would be to stay where he is and don’t get up to follow me. There are people staring at us if he wasn’t careful a scandal would break out in the media.
But when did Thomas Moore ever gave a shit about that?
I’m already past the staff entrance and heading towards the EXIT when he’s called out for me, loud enough that the workers of Skuro, noticed.
“Hey!” He huffs, breathless. “We’re not finished yet, get back here.”
“Both of us are going to do something, we’d regret if I stay.” I don’t bother looking back. “Take the hint, I don’t want to talk to you.”
Pushing the EXIT door, I practically speed walk to my bike hoping I could get there before he catches up.
“I know you’re pissed-” Thomas bumps into the wood as it slams close behind us. “You have every right to be.”
“Oh, I’m more than that.” Throwing my jacket over the handlebars, I fish for my keys in the pockets. “Words cannot describe what I’m feeling right now,”
“Then tell me,” He’s looking at me with that look, that fucking look.
I grab my helmet and try to unclasp the stupid thing. It’s stuck. Is the whole fucking universe against me at this point?
“Talk to me, Ginger.”
“No.” I feel about ready to explode.
“I’m not leaving until you do.”
“Do you have a death wish?” The fact that I can’t look at him in the eye, gives way to my increasing blood lust. One spark and I’ll reach out to strangle him, no questions asked. “Are you prepared for the consequences, Moore?”
“Christ,” He exhales hotly, going to grab at my helmet. “Don’t walk away again-”
“Walk away?” I seethe.
So he’s using what happened in the past against me?
How was that fair?
He was the one that left me in that motel room, he was the one that made promises, he was the one that got engaged, he was the one getting married, he was the one that told me to wait.
Well, I’ve waited and waited and now here he was, the day he’s returned has come, but it isn’t that simple, it isn’t that easy, I can’t just forget, I can’t just ignore what’s happened, so what do I do now?
What do I do?
“Did you think, I’ll go running back to your arms?” My tone has dropped so low. “Did you think it’ll be easy? To just forgive... and forget?”
The emotions I’ve kept secret are rising to the surface, boiling a feeling so strange, its a struggle to breathe.
Thomas tries to grasp my arms, but I don’t let him, choosing to flail away from his touch, disgusted beyond belief.
“I don’t expect things to go back to normal,” He ultimately says, sighing with defeat.
Maybe its because the alleyway is too dark, but I catch his features and how they lit with sorrow. “But I have a right to explain, you owe me that much-”
“You don’t have to explain anything!” Just like that, I explode.
Like how quickly the building burned down earlier tonight in a rush of heat and searing flames, my mental state engulfs itself the same way.
I lose it.
“I know its an arranged marriage, I know you tried to stop it, I know you kept it a secret because you wanted to protect me, I know!”
That fear, that anxiety, that worry for the unknown, fuels my anger, grief, and heartache to the point of no return.
What’s the point of explaining? What’s the point of telling me what I already knew?
There are cracks in my heart for what he did and I shouldn’t blame him, I shouldn’t hurt him any further, I shouldn’t make things worse.
He would have never gone if he didn’t have a choice, it was beyond his control and I had no right being angry with him... but I’m just so sad, I’m so frustrated, I’m so full of hopelessness that it’s impossible to understand what’s left and right anymore.
Everything is adding up, one by one, burden after burden.
Zanthus’s near-death experience.
My helmet has fallen in between us, an unwarranted concern for now.
Weakly, I slump backward, landing on my bike, one hand covering my eyes.
Tears are brimming, they are threatening to fall.
I’m going to cry.
I’m going to cry and I won’t know the reason behind it because I’m just so confused.
“I can’t breathe, I can’t think, I can’t concentrate, you’re making this, worse, for me Thomas...” A single tear drip down my cheek. “I can’t hold on anymore.”
It’s so hard.
“Then don’t,” Thomas grabs my shoulders, forcing my gaze up at him, at his searing attention, at his features as they darken with trepidation.
I want to push him away, I want to kick and scream but I can’t do any of that, because it feels good.
It feels good to be in his arms.
It feels good that he’s holding me.
This is what I missed.
I miss Thomas.
“...don’t hold on,” He says. “I’ll do it for you.”
Looping the short strands of my hair with his fingers, he pulls me to his mouth, our lips crashing together in a chaotic mess of teeth.
It happens quickly, too fast for my brain to understand.
I’m frozen with shock.
Is this an illusion?
He angles our lips, driving deeper, turning our kiss rough and choppy... this is real. It had to be. My dreams would never be able to create something like this.
The emotions are too raw, too painful.
I feel it now, as he tastes me, a maddening feeling that suffocates.
Air is running out of my lungs.
I fought to keep up with him but he’s barely giving me a chance to breathe through the small gaps of our lips.
My legs give up, unable to hold, he’s there to catch me, using his body for support, his tongue invading my mouth, his teeth biting my lip.
Memories flood back.
All those moments I’ve shared with him, all those touches, those kisses, those long nights, they overwhelm me, makes me see stars, makes my tears fall further down my cheeks.
His fingers run up the back of my spine and clutch my neck, squeezing the skin comfortingly.
I almost give way to my sobs when the frenzy kiss turns into something slow.
Gentle, soft, and kind... his kiss is tender instead of bruising, his grip relaxed instead of firm.
The energy has changed, the tension has dissipated.
In that dark alleyway, where night slowly waned, I find myself holding Thomas close, my hands sliding up his back, slowly squeezing, our lips never breaking.
We didn’t rush, we didn’t lose ourselves to lust, there was none of it here.
This was comfort, this was a relief, this was a yearning that we both kept inside ourselves for almost a year.
Our hearts pounded as one, our breaths mingled in the air. It’s a slow dance between us, careful and passionate, filled with meaning and tenderness.
I’m so consumed by what is happening, that I forget, right down to the fact that he’s engaged, Aitenev, Mason, the others, my anger, everything.
For the first time in months, I’m not burdened with heavy weight, I’m not seconds from suffocating in my own stress, I’m not crouched in the corner, beaten beyond measure.
He’s taking all of it away with just his touch, pouring everything he could never say out loud because it’ll just be too difficult to explain.
And as the kiss continues, I start to feel the proverbial weight on his shoulders, the burden on his body, the fears that torment him day and night.
I wasn’t the only one... who suffered, I wasn’t the only one, who laid awake at night, staring at nothing but the ceiling.
Thomas was there, at the other end of the world, doing the same, hoping to catch a glimpse of the light we both longed for.
A group of rowdy customers had bumped into a trash can at the opening of the alleyway.
They laugh loudly, giggling at the apparent mess.
It broke the spell, made me self-aware.
What am I doing?
Quickly untangling myself from Thomas, I shove him off, frantic for some distance, lips a bruising mess.
He winces at my abruptness, shuffling back on his feet with one hand covering his mouth to control his breathing.
My hood has fallen off soI quickly pull it back up, shielding my face from the dim light. “You can’t... do that.”
“Why not?” His voice is quiet, hushed in the night.
“You know why,”
It was wrong, on so many levels. It was right in so many ways.
“You’re my girl,” He steps forward, stopping only when I hold up my hand. “Why can’t I touch you?”
Because you’re engaged, because you’re not mine anymore, because we can’t do this, its wrong, it’s not right, it’ll only make things worse.
Bending down for my helmet, I pick it up and kept a straight face, hoping my expression didn’t give way to my faltering will.
“Forget we ever met tonight.” I hold the helmet to my chest, shaking.
“What?” He’s baffled.
“We can pretend we don’t know each other, we’ll just be strangers-”
"I’m going to pretend, I didn’t hear that.” Any other day, his determination would sway me, his intentions would captivate me.
But not today.
Today, I needed to get away from him.
As far away as possible.
“Your guard will be looking for you,” I slip the keys into the ignition and start the engine. The images of the frantic kiss are looping at the back of my mind. “Please go back to your Bachelor party, Mr Moore-”
“We’re back to formalities now?” He snarls, fed up with my ignorance.
He doesn’t get it. He doesn’t understand.
“Why is it so hard for you to accept I’m here-”
“Because I can’t!” My voice rose, delivering a shout loud enough that I hear the ringing in my ears. I can’t contain it anymore.
“All these months, all this time, I haven’t forgotten that you left, I haven’t forgotten that you are promised to someone else!”
My limbs are shaking, my throat is closing up.
“It may be easy for you, but it’s not for me, I can’t just pretend that ring-” I point a finger at the band that sits on his finger, the gold glint staring back at me tauntingly. “-mean’s nothing.”
No matter how badly I wished it otherwise, this, whatever we have, whatever we longed for, it cannot work, it can’t.
Didn’t we speak of this before?
We were two different people, on very far scales, living in the same chaotic world.
He’s Thomas Moore, Graymoore’s heir, I’m Vanessa Vail, just a girl that got caught up in events.
How did we get here?
How am I suppose to let him go?
How am I suppose to watch him get married to another woman?
How am I supposed to live without him?
“You’re... giving up on me?” He asks out loud, the question meant for himself. “Is this a joke?”
I don’t answer.
Thomas drops his head and palms his face. “This is insane... it’s fucking insane."
He bursts out laughing.
It’s a sight that makes my chest ache.
He doesn’t know I’ve prepared for this moment, practiced this conversation, over and over in my head. There’s more that needs to be said, there’s more that needs to be resolved yet I can’t find it in me to do so.
Maybe I just didn’t want to.
Because then it’ll be official.
“I’m going,” Getting on my bike, I avert my gaze and blink away tears.
This the right thing to do.
Thomas is a smart man, he’ll know my intentions, why I choose this. He’ll fit the pieces together without me having to say anything.
I have to let him go.
If I don’t, it’ll only be harder in the end.
“Don’t give up on me.” His hand shot up, grabbing my wrist, the air between us is abruptly cold. He’s not laughing anymore.
“Don’t.” Squeezing tightly, he forces our eyes to meet and there I see the emotions flooding his blue-green orbs.
He pulls me into his chest, one hand clutching the back of my head whilst the other wrap around my waist.
My cheek is pressed into the silk of his suit, I’m held there in his embrace, feeling his heart as it pounds, feeling his body as it trembles.
My tears finally fall.
“Please,” He whispers, softly and I know, it’s a plead. “Don’t give up on me, Ginger.”
Why... Why did it have to come to this?
He didn’t have to be engaged, he didn’t have to be the heir of that stupid company, he only needed to be Thomas.
My Thomas, nothing else.
“I know... I’ve made some mistakes.” He trails off, almost to the point of stuttering. “There are things I wished went differently, you have to know that.”
I do. I do know that.
“I’m trying to change things,” He clutches me tighter. “I’m trying to get out of the marriage, it’s going to be difficult but I can do it.”
He can’t get out of it.
This runs deeper than a simple decision.
If there was a way out of it, there would have been no need to leave in the first place.
It all came down to his name at the end of the day. He wasn’t an ordinary citizen, he had duties as the future heir.
Would his last name, really allow him to do as he pleases? Would his father really allow this to continue? I don’t think so.
Deep down inside, I know Thomas would fight tooth and nail to stay by my side even at the expense of his own suffering.
Which is why I have to let him go.
I have to cut him off.
“Let go,” The corner of my eyes are blurring with tears, my fists are clenching so damn tight that I feel my injured palm start to bleed again.
“Don’t leave me, Vanessa, please-”
Crack- Crack- C R A C K!
“Let go of me!” Shoving him off, I double over on my abdomen, pressing one hand to my chest, right above my beating heart.
“There’s no other way! Stop deluding yourself, you’ll only make things worse!”
“It’s better than giving up!” He snaps.
The anxiety is rising, the panic is overflowing, I needed to get out of here, I needed to run.
Pushing Thomas out of the way, I got on my bike and frantically tried to put on my helmet. My fingers are too shaky to hold onto it properly that it falls and rolls to a nearby trash bin.
Fuck it, I don’t need it.
“Listen to me-”
I kick the stand and back the bike up.
Fight or flight, fight or flight.
“LISTEN TO ME!” He roars.
The silence stretches between us.
Nobody told me this is how it’ll feel like to love someone. Nobody told me it would hurt so much.
“Let me go,” Guilt is sloughing away in my heart. “Don’t make this any harder.”
He approaches me slowly from behind and doesn't stop until he is directly in front of me. I can barely hear him when he speaks his next words.
“Why are you doing this...?” There’s so much pain in his voice, so much desperation in his actions. “Why do you push me away, I’m only trying to come back to you.”
Thomas is searching for my expression, trying hard to break through whatever mask I’ve created.
He’ll find it useless.
There’s nothing beneath the mask.
I don’t wear facades anymore.
For half a second, I wonder if he’ll grab me, pull me off the bike and prevent me from leaving just as many times before.
I didn't stick around to find out.
“Don’t-” His protests fall on deaf ears as I gunned the hell out of there, nearly running him over in the process. “Vanessa!”
I go over a drain grate, skillfully avoiding debris.
He’s still shouting when I turn the corner and drive down the street.
I hear his voice echo until I can’t hear it anymore.
Then, it’s silent.
The seconds turn to minutes, my surroundings blur into yellow lights and reds, the only thing constant is the revving of my bike.
I don’t realize that my fingers have moved on their own accord, clutching the brake so quickly that I’ve lurched to a stop on the side of the road, hitting the pavement.
Cars honk as they passed me.
Traffic continues without interruption.
I’ve missed the turning to my apartment.
Yet, I stay there, the tears falling freely down my cheeks, my fingers grasping at my chest.
That cracking sound-
-had been my heart, breaking.
Ladies and gentlemen welcome to the LAST few chapters of Unravel Him.