Chapter 1 - New Year's
“Happy New Year!” Everyone yells excitedly.
Fireworks are shot off all around us. Couples kiss and friends hug. It’s sickening. Normally I love this time of year but my whole world fell apart on Christmas Day and I’ve never felt so lost.
I came home from a day of giving gifts to sick kids and walked into the bedroom I shared with my fiancé, Miles. There he was in the throes of passion with another man. I couldn’t believe my eyes. We had been together for nearly ten years. My Grandmother, who raised me, loved him. I thought he was the one.
I left without a word and stayed at a hotel… technically, I spent the night at a bar down the street drowning myself in expensive bourbon. I would have stayed at the hotel bar but by the time I’d aimlessly wandered around town and made it there, it was closing. When I dragged myself from the bar stool in the morning my tab was well over a thousand dollars, probably closer to two-thousand. I used Miles’ card to pay for it and finally answered when he called me on his way to work.
He wondered where I’d been all night and claimed he was worried. Not wanting him to know, I simply told him I needed a drink after a long day and spent the night at a hotel. He said he loved me and he’d see me when he got home. I said ok and we hung up. I called a car and got a lift home, packed my bags and left my ring on the counter with a note saying I would not be disrespected in my own home.
After that I went to the office and paid the penalty for breaking the lease early. Miles now has two weeks to vacate. I hope he panics. His credit is horrendous and I didn’t help last night when I maxed his card at the bar. Oops!
This whole awful mess makes me wonder if all he wanted me for after this long was my big fat bank account.
The following day I flew to New York and decided to spend the rest of the week with my college roommate, Tyler and his wife, Penelope. I didn’t stay with them but they listened while I finally reacted to the crumbling of my life. It took a day for it to really kick in that I wasted ten years with that awful man.
Unfortunately, for me, Ty and Penelope had to leave last night to Toronto to see her family so I’ve been left to spend New Year’s alone. I came here on a whim with no earthly idea where I’m going to restart my life.
I’m lost in thought but eventually I wander back to the hotel. I enter the bar and order whiskey, neat. I don’t drink it immediately, I just cradle the damn drink in my hands. I thought I had it all, the beautiful house in the country, the gorgeous city apartment, a sexy, wonderful man that loved me and an adoption application in processing. I should really call them.
“Felix, Felix Jackson, is that you?” I turn and see Roman smiling brightly, looking fine as hell.
“Roman Harris, what are you doing in New York? Last I heard you were in Seattle.” I motion for him to sit and order him a scotch.
“You remembered.” he smiled his killer smile, dimples on full display, “I moved back here at the beginning of December. I will start my new job at the new private hospital when it opens next week. I am head of the pediatric surgery department. I have been doing surgery at other hospitals and helping to set up the new operating rooms since I’ve been here though”.
Roman looks like he was chiseled from marble by the God’s. Roman was always good looking but damn his honey skin, chocolate brown hair and the emerald green jewels he has for eyes look even sharper than before. Though, I could just be seeing him in a new light. Wait, what did he say?
“You look great. Why are you in New York? I heard you’re supposed to finally be getting hitched to Miles.” and there it is, the reminder of my failed life.
“I caught him in our bed with another man.” I take a sip of my drink and hang my head.
“What a snake. I’m sorry, Felix. You deserve so much better than him. I never felt like he appreciated or deserved you.” he finishes his drink and orders another.
Roman and I talk for another hour before he gives me his number and we go our separate ways. I’m just drunk enough I’d have done something crazy like try to get into bed with the handsome and successful, Roman Harris.
I really did enjoy seeing him again. I forgot how much he stirred desire in me but last I heard about him he was committed to his surgical career and had no time for a relationship.
Roman was my first college crush. I was working up the nerve to tell him how I felt when I met Miles at a party. We clicked and it led to a whirlwind romance. He swept me off my feet and made me believe I was the most important person in the world. He even proposed after just three months together. Everyone thought I was crazy but I was completely head over heels by that point and Roman had kind of disappeared.
My heart breaks a bit more when I think of how Miles and I used to be. When did the affair start? Was I being made a fool this entire time?
There is a knock and the door and I am drawn from my painful memories. I get up off the bed and try to make it to the door. Surprisingly, I made it. I swing it open and standing there looking handsome and disheveled is Roman.
“Felix. I’ve been waiting for you to be single for nearly a decade and I don’t want to wait a moment longer.” He growled low and pulled me in for a passionate, need fueled kiss.
Roman presses me against the wall and I start removing his blazer from his thick muscled shoulders. Miles only kissed me like this in our first year together. There was still passion but this feels so much deeper.
“Hold on,” I pull back and capture those glorious green gems with my blue Opal ones, “I just ended things a week ago. I’m not sure we should do this”.
“You had a crush on me before you met Miles, right?” I nod, “I liked you, too. I was going to finally confess at the beginning of the year party but I got there late and you were already with him. It killed me to see you together but it was my fault. I should have told you how I felt in our first year instead of waiting for the right time”.
He looks longingly into my eyes before he caresses my cheek with the backs of his fingers. It feels wonderful, a shiver makes its way through me. He leans in and I close my eyes but his lips never make contact.
“I want this so badly but we’re both far too intoxicated.” He pecks my lips once, “if you remember this tomorrow morning, meet me in the restaurant at one for lunch.” he pecks my forehead and leaves.
I will never forget how passionate our first kiss was. I’ll also never forget the gentle way he turned us both down.
Miles cheating on me may have actually been a blessing