My last few days I spent in a bubble with Mark we had a heart to heart. I asked him not to put his life on hold for me and in the end; we agreed that if in a year nothing had changed between us, we would see about being together. It broke my heart to do it, but deep down it was the right thing to do, even though we knew each other for months we had only spent a few weeks together in total. I knew too many girls who put their lives on hold didn’t go to a certain college, didn’t travel all for the sake of a boyfriend at the time and 90% of the time when I saw them next they weren’t with that person anymore. I spent all day yesterday with him, my sister, brother-in-law, niece and nephew. It was so nice to spend it with them, although every so often I had a pang of guilt for leaving them.
It was my dad’s dying wish to give me this opportunity, but deep down I needed it more. I was just coasting through life and not living it; I wasn’t passionate about anything, and I needed to know who exactly Blake Blair was. Everyone has come to the airport with me to say goodbye. Georgie gives me a big hug along with Dillion and Daisy.
“I am going to miss you so much, Georgie.”
Georgie wipes her tears away. “We will miss you too, but we have Skype and email you will keep in touch. I hate goodbyes so for me it’s a see you later Lil sis.”
I hug her one last time. “See ya later, Georgie.”
I hugged them all one last time before turning my attention to Mark, who was looking down at his feet.
“Well, I guess this is it?”
Mark looks solemnly at me. “Yeah looks like it, I really thought we had more time, the last few days have been incredible, but I blinked and the time was gone.”
I give him a sad smile. “Just treat it like it was us at the start, video calls, messages, emails and if you ever feel nostalgic just slide into my DMs.”
Mark laughs and pulls me into him. “I miss you already and I haven’t let you go.”
“I miss you too Mark, thank you for everything”
He hugs me. “You should get going security is hell.”
I bite my lip, trying to stop the tears. “Have a safe trip back to New York, I will talk to you soon.”
Mark grips tighter onto me, before leaning in and kissing me. It almost feels like a goodbye kiss and with every bit of strength I have, I pull away. I know deep down if I stand here any longer I will either A) ask him to give up his life in New York and come with me or B) Never get on this flight and go back to the hotel and be with Mark.
As I turn around to go through the departures, tears escape and fall down my cheeks. I can’t bring myself to look back. So I just keep walking until I know I am a safe distance. Sitting in the lounge my nerves are getting the better of me I feel sick, did I make the right decision. Eventually, when my flight is called, I walk to the gate and make my way onto the flight. I love Mark but this is something I need to do for myself, I just hope I don’t regret this.
9 Months Later ...
I made my way through various places, Spain, France, Germany to start then we had Africa, Asia, Australia that was when I found my calling. I volunteered to work with children I fell in love with it. Africa opened my eyes, helping children in poverty, watching their eyes light up as I taught them the simplest things moved me, things that we take for granted. Mark and I kept in contact we emailed, texted, I sent him photos but the longer and further, I travelled the time difference made it harder to keep in contact. As he was waking up to start the day, I was heading to bed. I was busy, and he was busy.
I think it was safe to say that the promises we made all of them months ago would not be fulfilled. He wasn’t the same, and neither was I.
I later found out the real reason, but I will get to that. It made my last travel plans a little up in the air. Last three months my plans were in South America, Canada and North America my last stop was New York where I planned to surprise Mark. I hadn’t been with anyone else during my travels. I made a lot of friends one, in particular, Spencer, was funny, sweet and very gay; he hadn’t concrete plans, so he kinda organised his destinations based on me. Spencer talked me into training to be a teacher said it was my passion I sparkled as I taught children. I told Mark this through email, but to this day I never got a response.
Not going to lie, it stung like a fucking bitch but not as bad as when a little birdy AKA Marcus let slip that Nicole was back on the scene. He wasn’t too sure what was happening with Nicole and Mark, but he knew Mark hadn’t the balls to tell me. Marcus knew communication between us was far and few between, Scott wasn’t happy with Mark after learning about Nicole. I withdrew from the situation. Marcus and Scott insisted that I come to New York, anyway. I have had an amazing time travelling and made plans to go back to university and get my teaching degree, news I shared with Mark which never got a response.
I had something to focus on since Mark moved on, Spencer was heading back to Spain, he and his ex-boyfriend gave things another try meaning, I was going to New York solo. My year was almost up, my dad was right, this was what I needed for me, but it cost me someone who I thought the world of. I have been debating even going to New York. I saw a picture of Nicole and Mark together at a Basketball game she had tagged him in it. It felt that I meant nothing to him looking back on the year when we became distant it was always me doing the chasing, then he stopped contacting me.
I removed the ring he got me, leaving an indent where I wore it every day of my travels. Marcus and Scott kept in better contact with me during my travels they surprised me. They were good at advising me places to see. They had done a gap year once they finished University.
“So are you coming to see me in New York are not?”
I laugh, “Oh Marcus when you put it like that, how could I ever say No!”
I hear him getting that bossy tone on. “You can’t, so tell me, will we see you at the arrivals gate this week?”
I hear a familiar voice in the background. “I promise to have coffee and doughnuts with me.”
The guys stopped telling me about Mark and I stopped asking after I was told Scott and Mark came to blows over me. Marcus promised me he wouldn’t tell Mark about my visit to New York unless I wanted him to know. I felt bad they had been friends for so long and I didn’t want to come between them, but Marcus insisted that as friends it was their right to call bullshit when someone was being a dick.
“Stop overthinking Blake, I can hear the hamster wheel turn,” I shout.
“Oi cheeky!” Scott pushes Marcus out of the way.
“Please, I would love to see you again.”
Marcus, felt like he was my big brother I didn’t look at him that way, but as Scott and I grew closer my feelings for him were getting blurred, When I was in San Francisco I had a surprise visitor... Scott, took me to dinner and he showed me a few of his favourite spots, nothing happened but there was a moment when he held my hand I felt a spark, a jolt of electricity that lit my body alive. I think he felt it too. He never let me go, but instead threaded his fingers with mine and stroked his thumb on my palm, giving me tingles. It was then I stopped thinking of Mark in any romantic way, at this point he wasn’t even my friend anymore.
Mark decided to shut me out of his life and ignore me, I couldn’t believe he was the same person maybe this was the real him.
I sigh, “Ok, make sure you have a Boston creme waiting for me and you will see me in New York.”
Marcus screams, “YESSSS, that’s our girl!!”
As I say my goodbyes to the boys, I can’t help but wonder if Mark and I were to bump into each other. What would I say to him?
Well, guess there is a chance now we will find out.
As I watched her walk away from me and us, my heart dropped. I had just 24 hours left in London before I went back home to New York. As I turned my key to enter my apartment, it hit me I let Blake go too easy, but it was too late, we both made our choices. Over the first few months everything was as normal we talked all the time, she told me all about her travels; she was making friends and looked so happy. Then the same guy kept cropping up in her pictures, a guy called Spencer he was in the same places with her. Had she moved on with him? Surely she would have told me.
We left things open, as time went on we contacted each other less or should I say I couldn’t bring myself to message her, I hadn’t the heart to tell her that Nicole and I had dated we bumped into each other in a coffee shop, had a coffee and a few hours later we cleared the air, not wanting to depart from her company, coffee then became dinner and well then there was breakfast, I woke up feeling guilty I thought I could wait for her but once she sent me the email telling me she planned to go back and study I knew then and there that our lives were running parallel and deep down I felt that no matter what, her life would always be in London and mine in New York.
When I told Marcus and Scott about Nicole, Marcus was annoyed at me, somewhere a long time my friends had become her friends, Marcus admitted she was like a little sister to him and as for Scott he was raging he practically screamed at me telling me I was never worthy of a girl like Blake, she was a dream girl, the whole package and I was a fool to let her go. In my haste and anger, I screamed back.
“You fucking date her then!”
He stared me dead in the eyes.
“Is there something already going on?”
Scott yelled, “How fucking dare you, no nothing, but I won’t lie both of us have been keeping in touch with her while she has been travelling, especially since her friend Spencer left her to go back to Spain and you don’t talk to her anymore.”
I spit out. “Friend, right!”
Marcus pulls on Scott’s arm. “I got this, yes friend, you dickhole, Spencer has gone back to his BOYFRIEND in Spain, but you would know that if you talked to her. You made your conclusion on that one and fucked up massively.”
Scott storms past me, almost knocking me on my ass. “I am going to go now. I hope you and Nicole are happy. Grow a set of balls and tell Blake, she deserves that much considering this entire time she was always planning on coming back to you.”
Scott walks out of the bar, leaving Marcus with me.
“I don’t know what happened to you, Mark, but I’m calling you out on your bullshit. As your friend sort this mess out. You have already lost Blake romantically, but your friendship hangs by a thread.”
With that parting note, Marcus grabs his jacket and walks out after Scott. Sitting there stunned: one - That Spencer was gay and two - that both my friends were practically team, Blake. I called Justin he had been working away and missed the drama; Explaining everything and even he agreed I had fucked up massively, to even accuse Scott of doing that and that more importantly, Blake was supposed to be my friend above everything else. I realised then that I had thrown her away entirely, and I had moved on with Nicole without telling her, a girl who was planning on coming back to a relationship that wasn’t part of my future.
Nicole and I had moved out of the city and into the suburbs she didn’t want to live in the apartment I once shared with my ex-fiancee and we agreed to a fresh start. The boys and I made amends, but it was still frosty when Blake was brought up in conversation so, in the end, it was a topic that was never discussed.
On the night of our housewarming, Scott couldn’t make it he had business in San Francisco. I don’t know why but I occasionally looked at Blakes Instagram to see where she was and right now she was on the West Coast; she hadn’t updated in a few days, so I didn’t know exactly where I wanted to ask Marcus how she was, but I couldn’t. A lot can change in a year I never thought I would be living with Nicole, I thought that Blake and I would find our way back to each other.
I tried so many times to contact her, but every email I drafted I deleted. I knew at some point this was a conversation I wanted to have with her face to face. Blakes year was almost up and Marcus had asked for my help with a London renovation, so I knew I had every opportunity to reach out then. I was heading into the city for a meeting; I tried to organise a lunch with the boys, but both Scott and Marcus had plans. Justin and I are chatting.
“So how’re things?”
I take a drink. “Yeah, good how’s things with Samantha?”
Justin smiles, “They are going well, she’s amazing.”
“I am so glad she seems nice.” Justin looks at me like he is waiting for something to be said.
“How are you feeling about today?”
I look at him confused, “What do you mean?”
Justin shakes his head while he eats. “Well, having Blake in the city must be a bit weird!”
I drop my fork onto the plate. “What are you talking about?”
Justin’s face goes fifty shades of white, “Holy fuck, you didn’t know.”
I get angry. “That’s where Scott and Marcus are?”
Justin goes quiet. “Yeah, they are collecting her from the airport she’s here for a week, I thought you knew sorry.” I struggle with this revelation.
“I don’t understand why they didn’t tell me?”
Justin shrugs his shoulders. “Well, why don’t you ask them?”
After a few hours of pacing around the city, I find myself outside Marcus’ door. Knocking the door I wait for an answer I hear feet shuffle and then the door swings open my jaw hits the floor and my voice comes out a whisper.
She stares blankly at me before slamming the door in my face.
A/N If you have read this before or you are completely new I went with my gut, I started writing and this is the direction my story took; it wasn’t part of the plan, but it felt right. If anything, I was probably just as surprised as you are. I know some of you are going to be sooooo disappointed and unhappy in the direction, but I just went with the direction my words took, trusting what I was feeling at the time would work out.
Love Lily Rose Stories xo