I watched Luke’s retreating figure in shock. A few tears escaped the corners of my eyes. I couldn’t believe that he’d accuse me of stealing money from the company. I knew how much the company and ethics meant to him. I stared at the page in front of me, it was blurred by my tears. It clearly shows that I logged in and changed the banking details.
My heart shattered. He didn’t even ask to hear my side of the story, he just accused me of stealing. I stood up woodenly and realised we hadn’t even paid the bill. I quickly paid and left the café.
I knew I couldn’t go home. I felt like a stranger in my childhood home. Mum was always sick, and Sean lived elsewhere. I was alone. There was a never a moment when I felt more alone. I wrapped my arms around myself and continued walking. I had no set destination in mind. I just wished I never came home. I missed my friends more than ever.
Maybe now that Mum was getting treatment, I could go back. There was nothing left for me here. I’d lost a job I didn’t even want in the first place but found myself enjoying. And the man I had fallen for.
I dialled a familiar number.
“Naomi,” I murmured when she answered.
“Maddie, I’ve missed you! I’m so glad you called.”
“I’ve missed you too. How is it going?”
“It’s been very busy but it’s great,” she laughed.
“I’m glad,” I wiped away more tears.
“Maddie, what’s wrong?”
“How did you know that something is wrong?”
“I’ve known you for a long time. Is it Luke?”
“Funny you should mention him.”
“What did he do?” she asked defensively.
“He accused me of stealing money from the company,” I cried silently.
“How could he do that?” she asked in outrage.
“He had proof. The system report says I logged in and changed the supplier banking details to a personal account. I’ve lost my job.”
“Does the report have a timestamp?”
“Yes,” I frowned.
“Does it have the banking details of your supposed personal account?”
“Yes. I don’t understand why you’re asking.”
“I’ll be there by tomorrow morning. I’m bringing a friend.”
“Naomi, I’m confused.”
“I’m going to help you clear your name and nail the person who has framed you.”
“You didn’t even question if it was me,” I murmured.
“Of course not. I know it wasn’t you.”
“How can you be so sure?”
“Because I know you and I love you.”
Exactly. Luke doesn’t feel anything for me if he could simply believe that I’d done it.
“I love you too,” I sighed. “I’ll see you tomorrow. Drive safe.”
Getting my name cleared would be nice but I was leaving. I don’t belong here.