Bed Of Thornes

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Chapter Sixteen

She's gone. I write to her on nights when the thought of her tortures my dreams . . . hoping to somehow reach her with my words. The poems I write replace the song lyrics I once wrote before she took over my being. She's consumed my everything. She's in my mind, my heart, my soul. She's my life.

It's been two months since she left me all alone here in Dallas. I've hated every minute of it and I miss her more with every second that passes. Everyone that knows me probably thinks I'm the biggest hopeless-romantic-chump that exists. I can't help it, she's got a hold on my heart and I'm the fool for thinking that she'll ever really give a damn. I doubt that I'll ever understand why she made the decision to leave that day, even after telling her how I feel. I guess I just don't want to believe that she doesn't care about me at all. There has to be more to it than this. It's not that I'm not happy for her furthering her career . . . I am. I just want to be able to feel that happiness along with her and it's like she's afraid to share her world with anyone other than herself.

I've probably called her a thousand times by now, but she never answers. I know, I should take the hint and move on. I've tried to a few times but it doesn't work so easily when you're madly in love with someone. Something tells me to never give up, so I keep waiting. I just don't know how long I can handle being without her. I frequently speak about Veronica with Jenna, but she says that she never wants to talk about me when Jenna tries to bring up the subject. Mason, Jenna's boyfriend, and I have become really close friends in the last couple of months. I try to not bring up Veronica constantly when we hang out, but it's not very easy. Though we only had a short time together and she wanted my cock more than she wanted me, life hasn't been the same without her in it.

Today I have the bright idea of sending her a picture of the one thing she does love. I've emailed her dozens of times with no response as well, but maybe this will get her attention. I pull down my pants and open the hole of my boxers to take a picture of my erection. This just may be the most immature approach to getting a reaction out of her but I've already used up all other strategies, besides taking my ass to Paris and that's my last resort. I feel like going there to find her might push the boundaries, like I'm invading her personal life, and I already know how she feels about that. I upload the 'dick pic' to my laptop and compose an email. I hit send without hesitation. The subject line is to the point: Come on Veronica, you know you miss him . . . he sure misses you.

Hopefully I'll get a response by the time I get off of work. I get dressed and head out to Blank Canvas, a job that's been hard to keep since she's left because it reminds me of how we met . . . but I have to do something with my time and finding a new job isn't anything I want to bother with right now. I haven't been doing any shows in the last couple of months. I can't bring myself to sing songs about love, they mean nothing without the biggest inspiration in my life. While she's out pursuing her dream, I'm completely losing sight of my own. Fucked up, I know. To think most women assume that men don't really know how to love, what a joke. We love just as hard, if not harder. Showing it correctly is where we tend to fail. Look at my situation, I'm in love with a heartless woman.

I stop to grab breakfast on the way to work and run into the doctor that Veronica had the accident with the day after her and I first met. I try to ignore him but he makes his way over to me. Suddenly I'm forced into conversation with a man that I could care less about talking to right now. He sips a coffee before he opens his mouth to speak his slithering words. I'm not sure what puts me off about this guy, but I don't like it, to say the least.

“Adrian, right?” He asks with an ugly grin on his face.

“Yup. Surprised you remembered.” I'm short and blunt with him.

“How's things been going for you since Veronica left Texas?”

Is this asshole for real? “How do you know she left?” I cock my eyebrow in defense mode.

“Why wouldn't I? She's done big time projects for me over the last several years. We've always had a tight relationship.”

“I forgot, you were her client. Not much of a relationship.” I shrug in dismissal of his comment.

“I suppose what you had with her is considered one? Besides, it's not that I was her client, I still am. Which brings forth the second reason that I know she left.”

This cocky motherfucker. “So you keep in contact with her regularly?”

He smirks an even uglier version of his grin. “Well of course . . . I'm the only reason she got in to the institute after all . . . well, that and the fact that her work is undoubtedly impeccable.”

“What are you saying? How are you the reason she got in?” My adrenaline is coarsely pumping through my veins as I take a step closer to him.


“How do you figure her work was submitted for review in the first place? Did she not tell you?”


I take a step back before I knock this sorry bastard right in his pompous mouth. He has some balls to talk to me like he just did, he doesn't know the pent up frustration I have inside myself. I walk away without another word spoken. There isn't a fucking thing left to say to him that's worth my breath. I get in my car and call work to let them know that I'm not coming in today. I've had enough secrets and lies. I need some time to get shit figured out before I completely lose it. I sit outside of the cafe, unable to drive just yet. I grip the steering wheel and beat the hell out of it in place of what I wanted to do to Clayton. How could she keep this from me? What's behind it that she felt she had to hide the truth? I grab my phone to call Mason.


“What's going on man? Thought you'd be at work by now.” He answers.


“Is it alright if I swing by?” I reply, still slightly breathless from my scuffle with the steering wheel.


“Now?”


“Yeah. Unless you're busy?”


“No, not really . . . Jenna's here.”


“Good. I need to talk to her anyway.”


“Come on over bro. I'll let her know you're on the way so she can get dressed.”


“I'll be there in ten.” I hang up and squeal out of the parking lot.


“I don't know why she likes to play me like a piano but I'm not about to be the fool anymore.” I pace Mason's floor of his apartment. I haven't sat down since I arrived.


“I don't know Adrian, she never mentioned anything about Mr. Clayton having anything to do with her offer from the art institution.” Jenna says and takes a drink of her morning coffee. “She would've told me, she tells me everything.”


“Are you sure about that?” I stop in my tracks and look her dead in the eye.


“Of course, we've been best friends since high school. We know each other better than anyone. I just don't see her keeping this information from me. I mean, why would she?”


“Why would she tell you? She knows we talk on a regular basis, Jen. I honestly don't think this was something she wanted to admit.”


“If that's the case, then you can't blame her for being ashamed. From what I know, she was under the assumption that her mother put her work up for consideration. She never would've accepted otherwise, there's no way. She can be a difficult bitch, but this?” She places her coffee on the table and raises her hands. “Truth is, she thought Clayton was a creep. Why would she willingly accept anything from him?”


“How could she turn it down? I don't think it would've mattered who it was. This is a life-dream of hers and I just think she selfishly disregarded my feelings to take what was handed to her.” I put my hands on my head and blow out a deep breath. “Wait . . . what made her have such feelings about him to think of him as a creep? What's that about?”


“I'd rather not discuss this without her consent. It's nothing against you, it's just out of respect. All of this is between the two of you and I have no right being in the middle of her business like this. I'm sorry.”


“It's like that?” I bite my bottom lip and shake my head. “Mason . . .”


He throws up his hands. “I've got nothing bro. I really wish there was something I could do to help you out man but you heard the woman.”


I jolt forward. “I know exactly what you two can do . . . get her on the phone for me.”


“You want to stage a call from me but have you waiting in the shadows to jump on the line?” Jenna snorts. “She'd have a fit with me over that.”


“Just tell her I gave you no choice.” I shrug.


“What, and act like I didn't know it was all premeditated? I'm sure she'll buy into that.” She sarcastically says and shakes her messy blonde hair.


“Look I know she's not stupid, okay? You don't understand what all of this has done to me, you just don't get it. I'm not trying to ruin your friendship with her, I'm just asking for one favor . . . do it in the name of love.” I pause and pout. “You do believe in true love, don't you?”


She snickers. “It's not me that you have to question about believing in true love. Veronica's who you should be worried about, she's the one who has this wall up against falling in love. In her world, doing something out of love doesn't count as a valid reason.”


I swing my head down then back up. “Thanks for the hope Jenna.”


“What? I'm sorry! It's the truth and you know it!” She tries to hide the smile on her face.


“It's not funny.” I continue to pout.


Mason chimes in. “You're going to give the man a tick, stop picking at his scars and help the poor dude out.”


“I'm not trying to mess with you and I know it's not funny. I wasn't laughing. It's just that you know how she is, come on.” Jenna redeems herself.


I slowly step over to the couch and plop myself down on it. “That's it. I give up.” I throw up my hands and let out a sigh.


Jenna stands up from the chair and bounces beside me on the couch. “That easily?”


“That easily?! I've been fighting for her for months and I've gotten nothing, not even the slightest in return, that shows me she's the least bit interested. It's like she gave up a long time ago, if she ever gave a damn in the first place. She gave up when she left me. There's no hope, you basically said it yourself.”


“I never said that.” She swings up her arm and puts it around me.


“You might as well have.” I put my head down.


“But I didn't. Those weren't my words. You just need to stop pretending.”


“Pretending? What the hell?” I glance over at Mason as he stands up and he gives a shrug like he doesn't have a damn clue.


“Pretending that life is a fairy tale. It's not. Some women . . .”


“Are just fucked up in the head and complicated!” Mason hollers as he enters the kitchen to refill his coffee and I can't help but to bust out a laugh.


Jenna yells back, “You know what Mason?! You're not helping, like at all!”


He comes back in the living room and sits in the chair next to us.


Jenna stands up. “I've got to run to the store. I'll let you guys continue this conversation.” She walks over to grab the keys and leans in for a kiss from Mason before heading out the door.


“Women.” He lets out a sigh and shakes his head. “So what is it that keeps you fighting for Veronica the way you do?”


"She's more to me than just another woman, there is no other in my world. My heart and soul are owned by a sexually addicted, dominating, cock-loving, stubborn female. Everything I want and exactly what I don't need can be found in her. She's a disaster, a beautiful one at that . . . and I love her, damn it."

He looks at me with uncertainty, "I can't argue with that . . . and you, my man, can't argue with love. I say you take it as it's given. I mean you just listed qualities most men could only dream of, or pay for, for that matter."

I turn my head towards him with a serious grin, "Mason, you never fail to amuse. Only problem is, there's a part of her that's missing and it's destroying me . . . her heart."


The next morning I force myself to go to work and soullessly dragged through the day. I couldn't be more relieved to be home and for this day to almost be over. It's been raining a good portion of the afternoon and the air has been cool for the first time this November. I turn on the news to see what the weather outlook is for the rest of the week and throw my jacket over the back of the couch. I stop and stare in horror when I turn up the volume of the TV.


“. . . of what France and U.S. officials are led to believe to be a terrorist attack. Further updates are being reported with Dallas Daily News' Dan Millers, live from Paris with coverage of this crisis . . .”


My brain goes into a haze of sorts, my hearing fades and my vision blurs. Panic swallows my heart and it begins to race as I grab my jacket and speed to Mason's place. I frantically bang on his front door and see a light come on through the window. He opens the door with a look on his face that matches the concern in my gut.


“Tell me Jenna's here.” I breathlessly demand.


“No man, she left about an hour ago. What's going on?”


“Can you call her for me?”


“Yeah sure. Come in. What's up with you bro?” He moves aside to let me pass.


“You haven't seen the news?” I walk over to pick up the remote and turn on the TV.


“No . . .” He stands frozen for a brief moment, unsure of what to think. “You're freaking me out man, what's happening?”


“I have to know she's all right. I need to talk to Veronica. Jenna is the only way to get in touch with her. She won't answer my calls.”


“Isn't it kind of late to be doing this right now Adrian?”


“You don't understand.” I point to the news on the TV and turn up the volume.


He watches and turns the same pale shade of white as me. I walk over to him and grab his phone from his hand to call Jenna myself. I see him slowly sit down on the edge of the couch, his jaw still slightly dropped open from the breaking news he's just now seeing. I dial Jenna's number but she doesn't answer. Maybe she's on the other line. I hope she isn't asleep. I call the number again and let it ring until she finally answers.


“Mason?” She questions.


“It's Adrian. Did you see what's happening in Paris? Have you talked to Veronica?”


“Wait. Calm down. She's all right . . . shaken, but okay.”


“You talked to her?”


“Yes. I called her as soon as I heard about it when I got home tonight. We actually just got off the phone, she wanted me to stay on the line as long as I could. She's supposed to call back to keep me updated. She said she would've already called but there was so much chaos at the time that she couldn't even think straight. It's almost daylight over there now. Her and her mom haven't been to sleep all night and the city is still in a frenzy.”


“I'm going to see her.” I say without thought.


“What? How are you going to do that?”


“I'll take the next flight out to Paris.”


“They're not going to let just anyone fly into that country right now.”


“Well what am I supposed to do?” I let out a breath. “Jenna, I love her.”


“I know Adrian, I know.”


“I can't keep going on like this. I'm in love with someone who doesn't even bother to acknowledge me. I just don't get it.”


“I tell you what . . . let me talk to her when things calm down over there. I'll get some answers for you, I'll try my best anyway.” She reassures.


“You would do that?” The desperation isn't hidden in my voice.


“I promise.”


“Thank you . . . I owe you big time.”


“You got that right.” She sighs and lets out a chuckle. “You guys get some sleep. Everything will be fine.”


“I feel like I haven't slept in months. Knowing she's all right put my mind at ease some, but I wish I could just let her know how important she is to me.”


“Well for tonight, focus on your well-being for once. Get some rest. We'll talk tomorrow.”


“Thanks Jen. Good night.”


I hand the phone back to Mason and take a breath.


“So she's okay?” He asks as he takes the phone from me.


“Yeah, far as she told Jenna. I can't believe this happened. She could have been killed.” I walk over and sink into his couch.


“I feel for anyone who has lost their lives or their loved ones. I'm glad to hear she's not harmed, though.” He walks over to pat me on the shoulder. “Look, you can crash here tonight if you don't feel like driving back home.”


“I think I'll take you up on that offer. I really appreciate it.” I rest my head back on the cushion.


He walks in the other room for a moment then comes back to the living room with a pillow and blanket. The fear and worry within the last forty minutes drained everything out of me. It takes me no time to knock out after telling him thanks and good night.


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