At The Edge Of Hopelessness

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Can't Make Things Right.

Reuben stood on the rooftop smoked the fourth cigarette in a row as he agitatedly tabbed his foot on the floor. His gaze fixed at the back of the beach house where many cars were parked, but he was still waiting for that one car to arrive. He puffed out the smoke as he gazed at many people gearing up for the party that is supposed to last all night long. He carefully looked at some familiar and many new faces – laughing and having fun, but somehow he felt like an outsider. He put his hand on the boundary wall and leaned in to see a few of Donna’s friends were setting up the barbeque while many were still coming. He sighed and once again looked at half-naked young men and women already drinking and dancing on the beat of some very sexist song. Reuben clicked his tongue and smoked the cigarette. “Can I have one too?” He was startled by the voice and turned around to look at Austin smiling with his hands in his pocket.

Reuben rolled his eyes, “You scared me, ” He told Austin before he took a box of cigarettes and lighter from his pocket and gave it to Austin. Austin thanked him and stood beside him, “What are you doing up here?” He asked as he lit the cigarette and smoked. Reuben didn’t answer his friend immediately – he blew his cheeks out, “I just needed some time alone, ” He replied to Austin without looking at him. Austin glanced at his friend before he too looked at the increasing crowd at the beach house. “It is a mess, ” Austin commented as he gazed at Gia – almost half-naked dancing with another guy. This was probably the reason he would never date Donna’s friends – they are people Austin would never be interested in.

“What is?” Reuben asked Austin. Austin chuckled and shook his head, “Emmett changed, ” Austin replied as his eyes fell on his dancing with Donna clinging to him in a two-piece bathing suit while Emmett was only in his shorts while he had his eyes covered with shades. Reuben looked at where Emmett was and chuckled. He nodded, “Yeah, many people changed.” He commented and puffed out smoke once again. Austin wanted to ask what he meant, but he was interrupted by loud music blasting through the beach house. Reuben winced, “God, the party hasn’t started yet and I already hate it, ” Reuben said. Austin laughed and patted his shoulder, “I know. I am not sure if it is Emmett’s birthday party or Donna’s beach house party.” Austin replied.

Reuben curled his lips into a small smile as he rode the train of thoughts – after few seconds he spoke, “Remember when it was just the four of us – just you, me, Emmett, and Milo playing video games, being stupid and just enjoying the moment. Those were good days, ” Reuben recalled. Austin chuckled and nodded as he recalled what he refers to as the golden days. Reuben’s eyes fell on Donna and his smile fell, “And then she came, ” He pointed towards Donna, “And everything changed.” He added.

Austin and Reuben both looked at Emmett as he whispered something in Donna’s ear and she nodded before Emmett walked in the beach house and Donna went to grab a beer sitting in the cooler on the table beside the barbeque stand. She stood with her friends and talked and laughed, “God, I hate her, ” Reuben could help but chuckled as he spoke. “I don’t know what kind of magic she has done at him, but he completely changed since then. He is not the Emmett we knew, ” Reuben added and Austin nodded along – he couldn’t agree more. Since Donna has come into Emmett’s life – everything change.

Austin and Reuben smoked the cigarette as he looked around. Austin was quietly observing the people gathering up – the people he doesn’t even know. The people who are so different from them. Austin doesn’t hate Donna for being what she is, but he doesn’t like how she has dragged Emmett along with her in her own little rich world. Emmett was such a different person before he started dating Donna – Austin always misses the Emmett he grew up with. It was so crowded and loud in the beach house that he decided to come up to the rooftop to have some less chaotic time only to find Reuben already up here. He wasn’t shocked to find him alone smoking cigarettes. The four of them have always been like that – they always hated chaos and they always find ways to escape such situations. The four of them are completely different from the rest of the party animals in the house.

“Hey, I didn’t know Leah was coming as well, ” Austin turned his head to look at his friend smiling while looking down. He knitted his eyebrows together and averted his gaze where his friend was looking at, “What the hell?” He mumbled as he saw his sister and her friend, Alesha stepping out of their car. “What are they doing here?” Austin said. Reuben shrugged, “Maybe Emmett invited them?” he proposed. Austin didn’t reply as he kept his eyes on his sister. Austin knows about the feelings Leah has for Emmett and he thinks that she is stupid to believe that he would ever feel the same for her. Austin clicked his tongue as he saw Donna approaching his sister. “She is such an idiot, ” Austin mumbled.

“Hey, I thought you guys would be up here. God, I hate Donna’s friends – they are so obnoxious.” Austin and Reuben turned their heads to see Milo walking towards them in his khaki shorts and a Hawaiian shirt with a pair of sunglasses resting on his nose. Austin turned his head back around to look at Leah talking to Donna. He could feel the tension from up here. He knows that even with the sweetest smile on her face – Donna can be very unwelcoming. “What happened?” Milo asked Austin who shook his head, “Nothing, my sister is here. I have to go see her.” Austin muttered before his eyes went on another familiar car stopping behind Alesha’s car. Austin bobbed his head towards the young attractive woman stepping out of the car, “Eleanor is here as well, ” Austin told Reuben.

“Thank God, she is finally here.” Reuben mumbled and turned around, “I will go get her, ” He added before he walked away to get his long-time girlfriend. Milo and Austin nodded their heads as Reuben walked away. Austin blew his cheeks out, “I will go see what Leah is doing here – do you want to come with me?” Austin asked Milo who shook his head, “Nah, I think I will stay here in quiet for few minutes, ” He replied. Austin glanced at Leah and Alesha one last time before he went downstairs.

Milo sighed and looked down as Reuben approached Eleanor who grinned and hugged him when she saw him and soon they were kissing. They were kissing like they haven’t seen each other in a long time. Milo soon saw Austin approaching Leah and her friend and when they both saw him coming – their expressions changed. They know Austin is not going to be easy on them. Milo once again glanced at Eleanor and Reuben to see them making out while leaning against her car’s bonnet. He chuckled when someone yelled at them, “Get a room.” He shook his head as chuckled along with many others down as Reuben pulled away and Eleanor shyly wiped her lips with the back of her hand. Milo was looking around at random people filling up the back of the beach house when his phone started to ring. He took it out of her pocket to see his elder brother, Ezra, calling.

He raised his eyebrow and answered the call, “What a pleasant surprise, big brother, ” He mocked Ezra with sarcasm. Milo heard his brother sighing before he answered, “Why did you tell mum to come to my place, Milo?” He spoke. Milo smiled as he shifted from one foot to another. He looked at his friends to see Eleanor, Reuben, Austin, Leah, and her friend standing in a circle and talk. “Don’t be so harsh on her, Ezra. She missed you, ” Milo replied. Milo could hear the frustration in his brother’s voice as he replied, “Milo, I don’t have time, and anyway don’t try to make things right between us, okay? I don’t think I can easily forget what she did to me.” Milo silently listened to his brother, “She is currently in my house – please come and get her. I am busy and I can’t drop her off.” he added. Milo sighed and shrugged, “I am just trying to make things work, Ezra. I don’t want her to be alone. She regrets what she did.” Milo tried to reason.

Ezra snorted, “She is twenty-five years too late to realize that.” He replied. “Anyways, when can you come and get her?” Ezra asked. Milo smashed his lips and he gazed at the people dancing, enjoying food, and drinking down beside the barbeque stand. The music roared and Milo twisted his mouth at it. “Where the hell are you?” Ezra asked his brother. Milo sighed, “At a party.” He replied short. “Great, ” He heard his brother’s sarcasm. “Listen, why don’t you party the next time and just come and get mom from my place, ” He asked. Milo put his hand on his jeans pocket, “I can’t. I am in Mississippi. I will get her from your place first thing in the morning. Just let her stay till I come back, okay?” Milo asked Ezra. Ezra was silent for a few seconds before he sighed, “Alright, fine. But, don’t get too late.” He answered back before he hanged up. Milo pressed his lips together and sighed out loud. He just wants to make things better.

Back in New York, Emmett waits for Donna’s father at his office. Emmett knows what he did to his daughter was wrong and he just wants to talk to him before he leaves for New Orleans tomorrow morning. It has been a week since he has been trying to reach Donna after a fight they had a day after he broke off the engagement. She was so much in shock the first day that she couldn’t say anything but she came by to see him the next day and it was mayhem. She yelled at him. She threw things at him. She even slapped him, but he didn’t react because he knows that he was wrong. He feels bad to break things up with her – he still cares for and he always will, but he can’t marry her only because of it. Emmett doesn’t know what was between them for the past six years – but one thing is for sure, it wasn’t the love. It is not like he didn’t try – he did, but he just couldn’t love her as she loves him.

“Why are you here?” Emmett lifted his head to look at Mr. Clark, Donna’s father. He stood up from the couch as he Mr. Clark stood strong in front of him with his arms folded. Emmett sighed, “I wanted to talk to you, ” He spoke. Mr. Clark raised his eyebrow, “What is there left to talk?” He asked. Emmett gulped as he pressed his lips together, “I wanted to apologize, ” He spoke. Mr. Clark snorted, “You used my daughter to gain the social status and then dumped her three months before the wedding and you think an apology will fix my daughter’s heart?” He asked him sternly.

Emmett narrowed his eyes. He knows Mr. Clark never liked him because he didn’t belong to an elite family like he did, but rather he was a son of a nurse and it wasn’t acceptable for him. “I never used Donna for anything. I truly care for her and I love her, but not enough to marry her. I didn’t want to ruin your daughter’s life by marrying into a loveless marriage.” He explained to him. “She deserves much better, ” he added.

“Of course, she deserves much better than a nothing like you. You broke my daughter’s heart, but somewhere I am pleased you yourself ended this marriage. You could have never been a good son-in-law for me. I would rather let my daughter married to a more capable guy. You were nothing and you still aren’t.” Mr. Clark’s words were coming out calm but they were filled with harshness as they always do.

Emmett didn’t want to argue with him. For the past six years, he was trying to prove himself to Mr. Clark, but it had to end now. He smiled and nodded, “Okay.” He nodded his head. Mr. Clark brought his eyebrows together as Emmett smiled and continued, “I just want to apologize to you personally. I would have done the same to Mrs. Clark if she wasn’t on another vacation.” He paused, “I should leave now, ” He added and nodded his head before he walked past Mr. Clark who snorted causing Emmett to halt his steps.

“And go where – to the place where you were nothing and where you almost died and almost killed my daughter as well?” He spat. Emmett closed his eyes briefly and slowly turned around to look at the scowl on Mr. Clark’s face. He curled his lips into a small smile and nodded, “Yes, I am going back to where I belong. I am going back to where I lost so much in a span of a few minutes. I am going back because I care about the one I lost and I regret ever leaving them.” He answered him. Mr. Clark chuckled dryly, “My daughter helped you so much moving on when she was herself traumatized by the event and this is how you pay her back – such a pathetic man you are, ” He spat.

Emmett sighed, “I am sorry your daughter had to go through it. If only I knew I would have stopped it. I still suffer from the trauma of losing so much in such a short period by something that could have been stopped if dealt properly.” He replied.

Mr. Clark clenched his jaws as he scowled, “Don’t crawl back to my daughter crying when you realize the mistake you are making, ” He said stormily.

Emmett smiled, “Don’t worry. I will not, Sir.” He said before he turned around and walked away.

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