Chapter 2: The Solution
“Wake up, Ileana.” I hear someone mumbling.
“Ughhh...” I grumble.
“Hey now, it’s like 8 AM. I let you sleep in.” I can finally make out the voice who’s waking me: Jack.
“Is it really sleeping in?”
“Yes, of course it is, we usually get up at 4:30.” He responds.
“What are you doing here?” I think out loud.
“Your dad said you really needed cheering up. He also said you haven’t been yourself since you came home.”
“That’s an understatement.” I respond as my stomach grumbles.
“Come on, get dressed and we can get breakfast and talk.”
“I don’t want to talk. There’s nothing to talk about. I’m heartbroken, there. The end. Talking is done.” I say angrily.
“I think you need to talk, especially with that answer. But if you don’t want to talk, we can sit in silence, or you can listen to me talk. Come on, up and at ’em!” He urges.
“Alright.” I slowly get up.
“I’ll wait downstairs. I’ll give you 1.5 minutes.” He cheerfully says.
“Are you kidding me?” That doesn’t even give me enough time to wash up or look in the mirror. How did I used to get ready that fast?
“No, I’m not kidding. Hurry up!” He hollers from halfway downstairs.
I can already tell that this is going to be a long day. How am I supposed to be busy enough to forget Sam when I’ll be with Jack. He always wants to solve my problems. There’s nothing to solve here though. It is what it is.
“Are you up for talking yet?” Jack questions.
I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to talk about it. I don’t even know why it’s such a big deal. Can’t I just sulk on my own? “Nope.” I respond flatly.
“That’s alright. I’ve got loads to share with you!” He chirps.
“I’m all ears.”
“Great. Well, Dave is amazing! He’s everything I have been looking for.”
“I’m happy for you.”
Jack drones on about his perfect relationship for what seems like hours. However, it was only about 15 minutes until the food arrived.
Thank god for the distraction. By the time I’ve put butter and jelly on my toast, Jack is already half done with his food.
I take a bite and move my eggs around as the toast softens and dissipates in my mouth.
“So, are you able to tell me how it ended?” Jack questions.
“I don’t really want to.”
“I know you don’t. I see how upset you still are. You’re barely eating. I know it’s got to be tough, but Ily. Please try and take care of yourself. You are looking thin.”
How can I care for myself. The only person who was supposed to care doesn’t. Everything I thought was real disappeared. I don’t know what is real or not. Maybe mom was right. Maybe she was just a temptation I fell for. I’m meant to be forever alone now. I won’t ever look at anyone with desire again.
“You are really deep in thought. I’ll make you a deal, you tell me what’s up, or you will eat all of your food.”
Ugh...I suppose I’ll have to talk about it sometime. It has been five months since we broke up on Valentine’s Day. I was so busy finishing my semester in college to really analyze or process much. I spent all of my time doing homework and avoiding communication with Sam. She knows what she did. I didn’t have to give her any explanations for why I left.
When I returned home I was extremely depressed for a week and I didn’t even leave my room. I got into the habit of working on the farm after my mom and dad pleaded so much that I couldn’t take it. I decided from then on to block everything out and try to be better.
I suppose I will have to open up because there is no way in hell that I’m eating all of this food.
“Okay…” I say slowly, “I don’t know where you want me to start.”
“How about the day you broke up? What led up to it? Did she break up with you? Or you with her?”
Gods...I really have to go through this. I take a drink of water. Why didn’t I tell him anything sooner?
“Well, first off, it was Valentine’s Day. And everything was going perfect. We rode in a carriage and dressed up for dinner. On our way out, she got a phone call and left for a little bit.” I started to tear up remembering what happened. She looked so goddamn perfect in that suit. She always looked perfect. What did I do wrong to lose her interest? How did I lack being enough?
“Wait….you’re telling me, you broke up on Valentine’s day? That’s just wrong. I’m sorry Ily.” He tries to be sympathetic. I know he doesn’t understand. This is Jack’s first relationship and it is going great for him.
“Yeah. So while I waited, I walked down the street to a cafe we frequented. She was there...sitting at our table...with some guy.”
“Wow, she’s got some nerve. I can’t believe she left you to go out with some guy.”
“It gets worse. She was smiling so much. I’ve never seen her smile that big. I could tell she was happy. Then she hugged him and leaned in for a kiss.”
“No fucking way.”
“At that point, I turned away and left. I told her it was over, she knows what she did and I didn’t want to talk to her again.”
“That’s got to be rough...have you talked to her since? What if it wasn’t how it seemed?”
“There’s no doubt in what I saw. It shattered me, right there on the sidewalk. And no I haven’t spoken to her. She called, left voicemails, and text me almost every day. I couldn’t handle it so I blocked her and deleted everything without knowing what was said. I don’t know if that’s something I can ever forgive.”
I broke down and started crying. It does feel good to let Jack in. But it is also opening the wounds again. Could I forgive that? I don’t know...she even broke the contract. She said that she never does that.
“I think it may be worth trying to talk with her. Look at you, you’ve stopped eating, you’ve stopped talking, you’ve pretty much stopped living. I don’t know how to help you Ileana. But, I think you need to start focusing on you.”
Could I talk to her again? If she wanted me back what would I do? I need her. She quickly turned into my other half. She taught me who I am...was… Is that still me? I think we would be able to work it out. I know what I have to do. I will become perfect like Victoria and then get her attention. She will have no choice but to love me again. I will be her perfect submissive. I will be better than Victoria ever was.
I smile for the first time in 5 months. “Thank you, Jack. I think I will work on myself and then try talking with her.”
“I didn’t do anything. I am happy to have brought a genuine smile to your face. I do like the sound of your plan.”
“Me too. I hope it doesn’t take too long.”
“Don’t rush the process. Working on one’s self takes time. I just want you to be happy again.” He explains.
I will be happy when I win her back.
I lean back in my chair and push the rest of the food away. Not today, not today.
“Don’t you feel a little better? Can you please eat more? I know you need it.” Jack pleads.
“I’m really not that hungry in the mornings anymore. College changed my appetite schedule.” I felt guilty about lying to him, but I can’t have him messing me up.
“We’ll I guess that makes sense, but for lunch, you better eat almost all your food! I can’t let all of this go to waste though.” He grabs my plate and eats what he wants.
Ugh…well I guess my lie got me into trouble now. What can I do?
“What is the plan today?” I ask him, hoping to find a solution to my problem.
“Whatever you want.” He replies.
“Can we go to the mall? I really want to get a new hand bag.”
“Since when do you use handbags?” He looks quizzically at me.
Never. “They grew on me in Las Vegas.”
“Okay, sure thing then.”
We wandered the mall for a couple hours and I bought a generic handbag that wasn’t too expensive. After that, we ended up sitting in the courtyard and people watching. It was nice to relax and focus on other people for a while. I’m sure all of our stories we made up for the strangers were fake, but who really knows?
“I suppose it’s time for lunch. Are you feeling any better?” He asks.
“A little, my stomach is not that happy though.” I say as it grumbles angrily at me.
“That’s ’cause you literally had one bite of toast for breakfast.”
Ugh, don’t remind me. There’s no way I’ll be perfect hanging out with Jack a lot. Maybe phone calls will suffice from now on?
“I’m thinking chicken strips and fries.” I decide after running through a list of food in my head. They seem to be the easiest to dispose of.
I pick a table while Jack gets the food. He gets me a chicken strip basket from the food court Dairy Queen.
“Hey, Ily, I think we should hang out again when I return from my trip in a week. I have really missed you.” He says.
He’s going on a trip? I look at him in confusion.
“I thought you weren’t paying much attention earlier. I’m going to meet Dave’s parents in Massachusetts. I’m leaving tomorrow.”
I take a bite of my chicken strip.
Good thing I got this cheap handbag. I think to myself as I snatch a different chicken strip from my plate and discard it into the bag while Jack was pointing something out. Although, I now don’t know why because I have more money than I could use since I own part of that club. I wonder if I should give it back? How do you give part of a business back...I suppose I will have to wait until I talk with Samantha.
“Mmhmm.” I respond to the sound of his voice stopping. Wow I can’t focus much right now.
“Yo, earth to Ily, quit daydreaming.”
Jack’s raised voice pulls me back to the vivid scene around us. When did it get so loud in here?
“It’s hard to focus. There is so much going on here.”
“Okay, well, the day I get back, we’re going out. There’s a dance that night. Dave will be here meeting my family also. I think it will be a nice experience for him.”
“I’m sure it will be. I do want you two to have fun. I wouldn’t want to impose on that. I can catch you a different night.”
“Nope, you’re not getting out of this one!” He smiles.
“I guess I won’t win, alright, I will go.”
My food disappears in front of me sooner than I realize. The only hard part was pretending to chew a lot during the conversation. I just want to be alone again.
I zone out the drive home and before I know it, I’m being dropped off.
“Be ready next week! I’ll message you to make sure you don’t forget.”
“Thanks Jack, see you then.”