Chapter 35 - Melody
I turned my phone on the next morning as soon as I woke up. There was another text message and a voicemail from Knox.
I listened to the voice message first, because I craved to hear his voice again. The truth was, I’d missed him. I’d missed hearing his voice, too.
Hailes was right. He did sound desperate. He sounded like he was going crazy. Exactly how I felt...
“Snow, please, please pick up the damn phone. I beg you. I need to talk to you, right now. Please stop punishing us both. I got the message, loud and clear. You have absolutely no idea how absolutely fucked up I’ve been the past few days, how much I wish I could take it back. How much I wish you were back here again, and I could do things over again. Please. Don’t end us over this.”
My heart shook inside my chest, and I felt the tears welling up inside my eyes. He sounded like he was going out of his mind. And then I read his text message, too...
TEXT: I have a feeling you haven’t been listening to the messages I’ve left you. Please don’t shut me out, Snow. Those dreams are back, and you’re the one drowning this time. I can’t sleep. I can’t eat. I need to talk to you, and know you’re okay. Please. I’m going out of my mind here.
I started sobbing because all of a sudden I felt guilty as hell. What the hell was I doing to us both? I was taking this thing too far, I was fast realizing it. The last thing I wanted is for those dark, suffocating dreams to torment him again. And it was my fault this time.
I immediately called his number, barely able to read the screen because I was crying so hard, consumed by guilt.
I wanted to slam the phone against the wall in frustration when his phone rang straight to voicemail...
“Hi, this is Knox. Please leave a message.”
“Hi... it’s me. I got your messages. All of them. I’m ready to talk.”
I disconnected the call just before I let out another sob, and I clenched my pillow, feeling sick to my stomach all of a sudden. And my heart just hurt again. It hurt for me and for Knox.
I’d known all this time about those dreams of his. About the guilt that weighed him down. I knew I needed to be gentle with him and give him time to come to terms with things. What the hell had I gone and done?
No flowers arrived that day. And all of a sudden, l was the one going completely out of my mind. I tried calling him again, same thing. Went straight to voicemail, but I hung up before the beep this time. And now I was the one feeling like I was going insane... what the hell had I done?
It was just shy of sunset, and I hadn’t been able to eat the entire day. I’d just been sitting inside my room, going crazy with desperate thoughts ruminating inside my mind. I just hoped that he was okay. That I hadn’t driven him to do something stupid, like fall into the arms of another girl. Damn - why didn’t I just call him yesterday? We were breaking each other, that was what was happening here. It had to stop.
There was a sudden knock on my door, and I nearly jumped from nerves.
“Mel, can I come in?” Hailey’s voice traveled through the door and I wiped a tear from my cheek.
“Yeah. It’s open.”
She opened the door and looked at me with a gentle smile. And I was wondering why the hell she was smiling like that, when I was a complete and utter wreck, and must have looked like it, too.
“There’s someone here to see you.”
“I’m not in the mood to see people, Hailes,” I sniffed, reaching for a tissue.
“You’ll want to see this one, trust me,” she said dryly, and I gasped.
“Is it... Knox?” I was almost too scared to ask.
That smile of hers spread wider on her face as she nodded.
“He looks as bad as you do, Mel. Go put both of you out of your misery, please. And... if I can please ask you one thing?” She looked sad all of a sudden again.
“Of course...” I said, my heart pounding absolutely everywhere, from my throat to my toes.
“Please don’t’ make a mess of things like I did. Don’t let your pride and a misplaced sense of justice cost you your heart. Because I can’t begin to tell you how many regrets I have right now,” she smiled bravely, and I nodded.
But then I gasped as I caught my reflection in the mirror. “I look like shit...”
“You do a little. Come here, I’ll help you.” She walked over to me, re-fastening my hair into a messy but acceptable ponytail. “Although, I have a feeling he’s not going to care how glam you look, Mel. He looked nervous as hell about the reception he’s about to get.”
I jumped up from the bed and coated my lips with a thin veneer of pale pink gloss.
“That’s okay. Good luck,” she smiled and watched as I took a deep breath then started walking downstairs.
And all that I kept thinking was that it couldn’t be too late to try and salvage us if he was here. That he wouldn’t have come and made a grand gesture like this, if he didn’t care.
But at the same time, I also knew that I couldn’t go on like this. That we couldn’t go on like this. It was time for the truth, as much as it may hurt. I wanted his whole heart, not just a part of it. I needed to hear him say that he loved me, like I loved him, otherwise it simply wasn’t enough.
It was time to put an end to the wearing of masks, to not saying what was hidden deep inside our hearts. I had to be brave. But most of all, I had to be willing to walk away from us, if he wasn’t able to give me what I so desperately needed right now.