Next day I went to the shopping mall with Tasha. She and I spent almost 3 hours, going from shop to shop, making fun of ourselves as we tried a huge amount of clothes and shoes. When I posted some photos in my Instagram-stories, I saw a notification about the message from Tyler. I decided to ignore it. As both of us settled in one of the coffee shops at the table with cups in our hands, Tasha immediately became very serious.
“So, Vera, what is going on with you? Maybe you want to start with explanation?”
I stared at her dumbfounded. What is it supposed to mean?
“Oh gosh, Vera! Why were you kissing with Dean? I saw you two together last night...”
“Fuck! I hoped, that no one saw us. This idiot firstly claimed that he’s finally over me and secondly pinned me to the wall and started kissing me! Can you believe it? It was totally out of nowhere!” I felt relief, that she wasn’t asking anything about Tyler. It meant only one thing, that I was good at hiding things. Again. “I just hope, that everything will be good between him and Megan. She really likes him and I think he likes her... Maybe he just confused?”
“Don’t worry. She didn’t see anything. I didn’t let her go to find him.”
“If I didn’t know you better, I would say that both of you were ready to have sex in my kitchen. Vera, you’re just too attractive. He liked you for a long time, so I wasn’t surprised that he couldn’t resist you.” Tasha was teasing me right now, but I felt uneasy from her words.
“Fine. Don’t look at me with those puppy eyes! What were you doing so long alone anyway? I am pretty sure that you were uncomfortable with us, all lovey-dovey.”
“Well, you’re right. You know, I was used to it in college, but with Nate... I don’t know. I guess I wanted him to be there, with me.”
“Do you really like him?”
“Yes. I feel good around him, very comfortable. He’s kind, generous and well, he’s perfect in bed”, I answered her honestly. But she didn’t have time to answer me, because we were interrupted by a voice behind my back. And I froze.
“Who are you talking about?” I turned around and saw Tyler. He was staring at me, frowning. I felt panic building inside me. What was he doing here? He supposed to be in Europe. How did he even find me here?
“Why do you care, Douglas?” Tasha’s gaze was full of anger. “How come you are here? This place is so not like your usual surroundings!”
“Nice to see you too, Tasha.” He smiled, but I know this look too good. “I am here to see Vera, that’s all. I’m okay with this place as long as she’s here.”
“Oh, how generous of you!” She lashed out at him and I didn’t like it. Right now I felt angry with her words. Stupid Vera!
“Tasha, please, stop!” I told her and almost immediately regretted about it. Tasha looked at me offended and she has rights to do so.
“Well, okay.” She stood up from her seat, grabbed her purse and marched to the exit. Here she turned to me and said: “You and your stupid inability to say “no” to this asshole! He will ruin you, Vera! I don’t want to talk to you... at least for several days. Bye!”
People in the coffee shop were staring at Tyler and me. He looked totally unaffected, so he sat across me at the table in Tasha’s place.
“Really, Tyler, what are you doing here? I thought you will be in Europe till the beginning of November...”
“Yeah, the plan was like that. But I changed my mind. You seemed distant the past two weeks and I also have business’ matters, that couldn’t be postponed more than they already are.”
“Oh...” I stared at him because I really didn’t know what to say.
“I guess, I know now, why you were like that, even in your messages. Who is he?”
“It doesn’t matter, Ty. How did you find me? It’s obviously not the place for you to show up.” I will try to avoid answering him. I cherished our little bunter in messages and I am sure, as soon as he will know about Nate and me – it will be over.
“You shouldn’t tag your geo-position if you didn’t want to be found. Is he really better than me? In bed?”
“Of course, that’s all you are interested in! And here I thought, that you missed me! So stupid, as always!” I sighed and closed my eyes with my palms.
“Vera, look at me, please.” Tyler’s voice was kind and gentle this time.
“Why, Tyler? All these four years I missed my friend. My friend who always had managed to make me smile, who could speak with me for hours about everything and anything... But at the same time, I wasn’t missing you as my lover, Tyler. You brought only pain and tears to me this way. I want to be only friends with you and it’s the last time when I tell you this. If it’s okay with you, I will be happy! If not, well, I guess we need to part our ways, again. So... What will be your answer?”
“Okay.” Tyler sighed and looked at me, I couldn’t figure out his expression. “But I don’t give up on us, Vera. I will win you back in no matter of time.”
“And here you go again, Ty! You’re impossible! What about your fiancée? She’s more gorgeous than me and she’s from your world, the world of rich and famous people!”
“Don’t you dare to talk about yourself like that! You’re perfect and I really disappointed, that you still don’t understand it yourself! Any guy will be lucky to have you. Me? I will be the happiest in the world.”
“Shut up, Tyler!” I felt butterflies in my stomach. This man sitting before me was too handsome, too sexy and he knows me too well. He knows what to say to me to melt my heart. Shit! If I don’t end this conversation right now, he might be in my bed at the end of the day. It was the truth, which I accepted this time.
I got up and so did he. We looked at each other and I realized that I really want him to kiss me right now. Fuck, Vera! Snap out of it!
“May I give you a lift home?” He smiled at me. No, no, no! Sounds too much like déjà vu!
“Thanks, Ty, but no. Subway will suit me more.” I smiled at him in return and went to the exit. He placed his hand on small of my back and guided me to the doors. All in Tyler was too familiar to me. Everything was finding a response – his touch, his musky scent and even his presence near me. I need to get out of here and as fast as I can!
Tyler and I stood on the street, locking eyes. Without thinking, I made one step to Tyler, kissing him on the cheek. His lips stretched into a huge smile.
“Well, I would say, it’s a beginning. Don’t you think so, friend?”
“Argh, Tyler! Do you really need to spoil the moment?”
“I am just showing you, that even I could behave. Bye, gorgeous!”
I waved at him and went to the subway. Thoughts were swirling in my head. Let’s be honest, I was glad to see him. And I am really happy to have my best friend back. I was right, that as soon as he will act as his past self, I couldn’t refuse him. Of course, I know, he won’t stop his attempts to lure me in his bed. But I have Nate now. Then why I was so happy when Tyler said all these sweet words to me? And with all these secrets about my relationship with Nate, do we really have a chance? Shit! I don’t know what will happen next between me and Nate and between me and Tyler... But I am sure, it will be complicated as hell!