It had been five years since she saw him, and it was the first time in five years that Adaline West let a small smile grace her face.
“Yeah, well. One of the many lifestyle changes I had to make in here,” he shrugged.
Adaline sat down on the chair opposite Wesley’s and took her time to take in the boy’s- or man’s- appearance.
Obviously, the lack of hair on his head was the first thing she noticed. Apart from that, his gruff beard was now longer than she remembered. She also took in the handcuffs which tied both of his wrists together and quickly averted her eyes before he noticed.
Adaline tried to hide her disappointment about not being able to see his tattoos due to the full-sleeves orange jumpsuit he was wearing.
Adaline exhaled. Five years, yet she had no idea what to say to him.
Fortunately for her, Wesley started the conversation himself.
“So, why are you here?”
“Straight to the point, like always.” When Wesley didn’t reply, she continued, “I... don’t know.”
Wesley snorted at her.
“I do. You heard about Michael’s wedding, didn’t you?”
Adaline straightened her back and tried not to let the words sting her as much as they did.
“I’m surprised you know about that. Did you receive an invitation?”
Wesley raised an eyebrow. “You really think they’re gonna let me attend a wedding?”
“Prison inmates can attend a funeral. I’m sure your lawyer can talk to the court about it.”
“Funerals are different,” after a pause Wesley added, “plus, the rules are a lot harsher when you’re in for murder.”
Adaline couldn’t stop her face from flinching, and Wesley pretended that he didn’t notice.
They both kept quiet for some time and the clock ticking in the room made Adaline aware of the limited time she had before they asked her to leave.
“I can’t believe he’s getting married.”
Welsey narrowed his eyes at the girl in front of him. Even though he never considered Adaline as his friend, there was still something about her which always made him feel relaxed.
“You know, Adaline, I’ve always admired you. But even I have to say, you fucked up bad.”
Adaline closed her eyes. For the past five years, she had avoided thinking about the what ifs and swallowed any amount of regret which threatened to enter her mind.
“I wasn’t the right girl for Michael and the fact that he’s getting married tomorrow is enough proof of that.” Adaline took a deep breath.
Wesley gave her a small smirk. “You’re not gonna waste our fifteen minutes by talking about lover boy, right?”
Adaline shook her head. “No, tell me about yourself. How has prison been treating you?”
Wesley snorted. “Like a murderer.”
Adaline bit her lip and kept quiet, which made Wesley laugh louder.
“Go on, you can ask me.”
“Ask you what?”
Wesley gave her an unimpressed look. “What you’ve been dying to ask since the minute you came here.” Wesley continued with a grin. ”Did I really kill that guy?"
Adaline shook her head. “I don’t want to know.”
“Because if I know the truth, then I’ll lose you too.”
Wesley was stunned but he masked his experience with a straight face. And for the first time in five years, a distant memory of school crossed his mind.
Just like everyone else, Wesley Prescott perfectly knew who Adaline was.
He knew her before he saw her roaming on the cool sand in Hamptons. But it was in that particular moment, seeing her walk on the beach in her white sundress, when Wesley clearly saw Adaline for the first time.
He had been looking forward to spending the weekend in Michael’s fancy mansion, and meeting rich people who loved to party. After all, they were the perfect buyers for everything that Wesley sold.
However, meeting Adaline was something which he had not planned, and something which he knew would eventually lead to trouble.
Wesley didn’t know whether it was the almost-faded sparkle in her eyes or the fact that he had never seen her laugh that drew him in, but eventually he found himself walking towards the same path as her.
“Is your whole body covered in ink?” Was the first thing she said to him.
“Would you like to see for yourself?” Was his answer.
And no matter how much he tried to convince himself otherwise, the truth was, he had not taken even a single hit that day.
“You know, we’re on a clock here.”
Wesley refocused his vision on the brunette girl sitting in front of him and tried to forget the memories. They never brought anything but pain.
“Are you still in touch with that pink-haired girl?”
Adaline felt a little sting in her chest as a familiar face entered her brain.
“Not since Cole’s funeral. I told her I was leaving, and she told me to lose her contact.”
Wesley nodded. He never really liked Lola anyway.
“What about you?” Adaline asked. “Do the boys come to visit you?”
Adaline had not thought about her accidental one-night stand in five years, and she didn’t want to start now. Some things were best forgotten.
“What about Jack? Sebastian?”
Wesley shrugged. “You really think the rich boys would ruin their reputation by visiting a prisoner?”
“They were your friends.”
“They were not my friends, they were my ATM machines.”
Adaline stared long at the grey-eyed boy and wondered what had happened to him to make him so bitter.
“Did Michael ever visit?”
“Once.” He paused to see her reaction, but then continued at the lack of any. “He came the day I was arrested and asked me if I actually did it.”
“What did you say?”
“I said yes.”
Adaline did not respond.
“He never came back after that day.”
The metal door of the room they were sitting in opened with a creak, and a broad-looking police officer entered inside.
“Your time is up.”
Both Wesley and Adaline were disheartened by the officer’s words, but neither of them let it show.
Adaline got up from her chair, which made a squeaking sound with the floor, and nodded at the police officer. The latter went out of the room and waited for her to follow him.
Adaline turned to look at Wesley.
“Guess I’ll see you after three years now.”
Wesley raised an eyebrow.
“You’ll not visit me again?”
Adaline shook her head with a smile.
Wesley chuckled, and subconsciously realised that he had not laughed this much in years. He also realised that he might never see Adaline again.
“Hey Addy, will you wait for me to get out?”
Adaline gave him a last smile before turning around.
Wesley shifted from the edge of his chair and leaned back. He had no idea what Adaline meant by that, but he didn’t care.
He had three years to find out.