Chapter Thirty Eight - Mark’s POV
I heard a door slam, startling me from my sleep, loud enough to rattle the walls in our room. I jumped out of bed and opened the door to have a look when I heard April ask what was wrong? "I think it was Brax babe, he's storming off down the hallway. You don't mind if I step out for a few minutes to see if he's alright?"
"Go. It's one of the many things I like about you Mark, you have such a big heart."
"Don't move though. I'm coming back for you." I walked over cupping her face and kissed her softly.
"See you soon." I quickly chucked some clothes on and grabbed a few spliffs, slipped out the door and made my way in the direction Brax went. As I started to follow I stopped and turned, opting to go see Midget first.
I made my way to their room and knocked on the door. At first no one answered so I knocked again. I only had to wait a few seconds before Midget swung the door open, tears streaming down her face and ready to scream, I am guessing thinking it was Brax. "What? Did you forget your key when you stormed . . . . Shit! Sorry Mark, I thought it was . . ."
"Brax?" She nodded and said yes quietly. "Can I come in?"
"Yes, of course. He isn't here though. I don't know where he went, sorry Mark."
"He walked down that way." I pointed towards the direction I saw Brax storm off to and Charlie gestured for me to come in. Once inside she turned to face me.
"So what's up, mate?" I looked at her and I could see the tears threaten to spill again, so instead of saying anything I just walked over to her and pulled Charlie into a tight hug. She started sobbing and I just held her tighter, letting her cry out her frustrations, not pushing her or saying anything. After a few minutes Charlie pulled back and walked over to get some tissues. "Sorry."
"Not needed. It is perfectly fine." We sat down in the lounge and I just looked at her. "Do you want to talk? Or do you want some time? I wanted to check on you first but I am going to go check on Brax after this, just wanted you to know."
"We didn't hear what happened Charlie, but we felt the door slam."
"To be honest I don't know what happened." I looked at her puzzled and asked what she meant. "He just asked me if I was ok, Mark and I said I was and he kept pressing. Insisted I wasn't being myself and the next minute I just snapped his head off." I passed her another tissue as the tears started to fall again.
"Are you alright?"
"I don't know Mark. I think so, I am just so goddamn tired at the moment."
"The tours take it out of you babe, the exhaustion can hit you without even realising it."
"Yeah, but it wasn't like this last time Mark."
"But last time you didn't come face to face with Calvin did you? Have you taken the time to process that? Last time you weren't engaged and surrounded by everyone in your face, to the point you couldn't even get a chance to enjoy it properly together."
She shrugged her shoulders at me as she said "I guess so."
"You can tell me if I am overstepping my boundaries, but has Brax done anything to upset or anger you?"
"No Mark, never. He's incredible with me, even with all my emotional baggage." I told her maybe it was exhaustion then. If she needed to rest then she should. We all understood and had been there at some stage.
Charlie sat and processed this for a minute before wiping her eyes and I saw the tears had finally stopped. "Are you ok now? If so I am going to go check on him, but if you need me to stay a little longer I am happy to do so."
"Thanks, I feel better already. I am going to go lay down. Just tell him to come back please when you are finished talking."
"I will bring him back myself, I promise."
"I love you, thanks Mark. I don't say it enough because everyone else is so boisterous but I am glad to have you in my life."
"I love you too, now don't be going all soft on us evil midget, alright?" She laughed and said alright as I gave her another hug and a kiss on the forehead before heading off to check on Brax.
I headed out of the hotel and I looked both ways. As I turned left I saw a big park and thought it was probably my best shot. We are all creatures of comfort and when we need some quiet time we find a smoke and a quiet spot to step away for a bit. I walked down and as I headed across the park I saw a bench with someone sitting on it. The closer I got I realised it was Brax and he eventually heard me and looked up with a face like thunder. "You know bro we aren't in Australia any more? It's fucking freezing out here."
"Yeah, I lost the feeling in my ass about twenty minutes ago."
"Lucky I brought you this then." I pulled out one of the spliffs and handed it over to him as I grabbed a seat.
"Cheers Mark. What brings you out here anyway?"
"Funny story, that. I was in bed with April until some prick slammed the door so hard it rattled our walls and woke us both up." Brax apologised for being an asshole, not that I really was bothered. "So you gonna talk to me? What's going on?" I lit the spliff back up and passed him the lighter to follow suit. "Complete honesty too, I just came from Midget. Spent the last twenty minutes talking to her."
"Hopefully she talked to you, because she wouldn't talk to me. Is she ok?"
"She is now, she's gone to lay down for a bit."
"Thanks." I looked at him waiting for Brax to offer more as he looked up blowing out a large breath. " I just don't know mate. The last few days she has gotten worse, she isn't herself. She always looks despondent when we are out. When we aren't I ask if she wants to do something and she just says she is tired. Hell, I felt like I was making love to a corpse the other day."
"Which reminds me Brax, that was a pretty fucked up thing to say last night. Asking Chester if he wanted to swap."
"I know man, I hated myself the minute I said it, believe me. I was just so frustrated she won't let me in."
"Good I am glad you know, because it really pissed me off. You love her too much to disrespect her like that. Don't do it again."
"I won't man, and I really do. I just hate that I can't make her feel better, because she won't talk to me." I looked at him and told Brax she was exhausted. "Yeah I get that much."
"No, I mean, after just spending the last twenty minutes with her, she's got exhaustion. Think about it, bro. We go half way across the world, jet jagged and supposed to be recovering, then she runs into Calvin of all people and has to relive that. Doesn't get the time to process it because we are back on the road and then she runs into him again. You two get engaged in the middle of this and have nowhere for privacy and all of us around, you can't celebrate it properly like you should have. She wanted to do something special for your thirtieth and then we threw in a hectic schedule that is all out of sync because we lost so much time when Brett was injured."
I watched as he thought about it for a moment, before finally slumping in defeat. "Fuck! I am such an asshole, how did I not see it? We have all been there, I should have known the signs."
"Don't beat yourself up about it bro, it is hard when it comes on so suddenly. You and I have both been in that situation. Just get back there and be there for her, you don't need to say anything, you just need to be there."
"Thanks bro." We got up and hugged before heading back over while we finished our spliffs. Once in the elevator we got back upstairs and walked down the hallway. As I went to put my key in our door, I heard Brax knock lightly. I waited to make sure he was alright to get in, and Midget heard him. After a few minutes Charlie opened the door and I saw her start crying when she saw Brax in front of her. He didn't say a word, just picked her up and cuddled her into his chest, carrying her inside their room and kicking the door shut.