Who the fuck is calling my phone.
He awakes to TV on the PS4 screen. The Kung fu movie he fell asleep to had been over for hours now. He can hear his phone vibrate on the floor beneath him. Sleepily, he runs his hands along the carpet until he discovers it. It was her, the girl he had currently been spending his time with. Fuck. It was about 11:30. He definitely wanted to sleep in longer than this, especially on his day off. He wanted to spend the day making beats, smoking, and trying to have some sort of peace but she’s calling.
“Yo.” He answers. Good bye original plans.
Since he couldn’t do exactly what he wanted, he would try to fit in buying records in with what she wanted to do with the day. Should’ve just told her I wanted to be left alone. But he was trying not to be that guy anymore. He was trying to show he could be interesting and not so antisocial. He didn’t know how he could even find the time or the willpower working two jobs, all he wanted to do was nothing. He was stressed out and being out and about stressed him more. No one can drive in this area of Houston. He hits a long drag from his cigarette as he glances over towards her. She sits idly by, flipping through Facebook on her phone. He fights to roll his eyes but they win. I should’ve just stayed the fuck at home.
He parks across the street from Cactus. He heaves a huge sigh as he unbuckled his seatbelt.
“Are you ok? You seem annoyed.” She asks.
“I’m straight.” He replies getting out the car.
His mood was fucked and he couldn’t explain to her why. She wouldn’t understand. Really it would just hurt her feelings and he didn’t want to deal with all that shit. She reaches for his hand as they walk towards the store. He casually moves his hand towards his back pocket to reach for his wallet, hoping it wasn’t obvious he was avoiding holding her hand. She begins to chatter about some shit she went to the other night. He gives his best effort to listen. On and on, giving every detail, he nods and responds where he needs. He looks towards the window, noticing a shirt he hadn’t seen in a few years. A black Tee with a band design on the front. Up from the shirt he sees long greyish hair. He frowns, trying to figure out who could this be. The grey hair transitions to black, big gold hoops shining through as she pushes some hair behind her ear. She is looking down at a record behind her large thick framed glasses. His girl’s chatter has become distant as he focuses on the girl. It can’t be… He’s stopped in his tracks, staring. He thinks he knows who she is but it can’t be. She had moved away, right? It would makes sense; he knows that shirt. That is his shirt. Suddenly, she looks up from the record, towards the window and he’s spotted. Oh fuck that is her! She continues to look at him, startled and anxious. It has been years since they’d seen each other. Hell even spoken to each other. His heart is racing but he can’t let it be visible that he’s freaking out.
“Hey what are you looking at?” His girl grips his arm. The girl inside looks away quickly, putting the record back and starts shoveling again.
“Nothing.” He continues the walk back up the sidewalk into the store, dragging her along.
“Why were you staring at her like that?!”
“Who is she?!”
“Why won’t you tell me?!”
“Because it’s not fucking important.” He says stern enough for her to shut up.
“Fine. I’ll be over here minding my business.” She barks, thinking it will make him change his attitude but shit like that doesn’t work. Especially not today.
“Do that then.”
He leaves her in the front of the store and makes his way to the records. This can’t be her. He hesitates by the entrance, seeing her there alone in the rock section. She continues to dig, not phased by seeing him coming into the store. Act natural as possible.
What the fuck is he doing here?!
She knew she had a chance of running into him here but deep down was hoping that it wouldn’t happen. She tried to see him before she left but he responded like he usually does, “yeah sure I’ll come by,” but he would never show up. You’d think after the 100th time it would hurt a little less but nope. Hurt like the first. Ugh and then he would be with his new girlfriend to add insult to injury…the fuck. But there was no way to escape the situation. She watched him from her peripheral walk towards the R&B section. She kept her trembling hands on the records to hide her nervousness. His lips twitched to say something. He continued to look upon her. She couldn’t tell if he was checking her out or if he was in disbelief that she was actually here. Ugh fuckin say something already!
“Is that really you?”
She tried to resist a grin. “Uh yeah I think so.” She picked up a Cream record.
“What…what are you doing here?”
She turned the record over in her hands, avoiding eye contact. “Well I finally bought a record player so I’m buying records…”
“No what are you doing in town? Didn’t you move away for school?”
“Oh you remember that? Didn’t think you would since you act like I don’t exist.” Of course she had to be a bitch about it. Finally she looked up at him. He hadn’t changed a bit. She loved that. Damn he still looks good.
She put her hand up, “Nah you really don’t have to.”
Fuck she looks really good. She really hasn’t changed much.
He couldn’t help but stare at her. He only saw her through a screen on her social media sites. He knew she was nervous; she couldn’t stand to look at him long and kept digging through the records to hide her shaking hands. He didn’t know what else to say. He really wanted to explain why he couldn’t see her before she left. He couldn’t deal with the thought of her actually leaving. Thought it would be best for him not to see her at all. Couldn’t deal with the emotional turmoil it throws him in. Like right now.
“Your girlfriend is pretty I guess.” She laughs. “Damn I’m still a jealous ass ex after all this.” She shakes her head.
“That’s not my girlfriend.”
She scoffs, “Oh my god are you still keeping that up?! Jesus…”
“What I told you before…”
“Again you don’t have to.”
She waves him off again as she moves over to another section.
“It’s really good to see you.”
Fuck you let that slip out really?! She laughs loudly, surprised to hear him say that but he knows a smart ass remark is in retort. It makes him wish he kept that to himself.
“Oh that’s nice to hear after 3 years…”
She knew how to push his buttons. He was already in a shit mood because he was out of his bedroom. Now he had to deal with her smart ass mouth? A small part of him missed it though he did hate to admit. He hadn’t even looked at one record since being in the store. Just gazed upon her trying to be less anxious and more angry at him. But that’s not what he wanted after all this time. It was good to see her. He really missed her. He misses her.
“Yeah…it’s good to see you too. You see I’m still wearing your shirts,” she pulls on the t-shirt, “the guys I’ve dated hated that,” she laughs again. “Ah well fuck em it’s not like they stuck around…”
She stood still for a bit, drumming her fingers on the shelving. Something in him moved him. Slowly, he walks over to her with clenched fists. Something in him wanted to touch her again. Hold her. When he stood before her, he calls out to her,
Her eyes made contact with his as he started to wrap his arms around her. She inched backwards.
“What are you doing?”
Don’t you dare say it.
“I miss you.” He inches towards her.
“What? No you don’t…” She keeps moving.
“I really do. Now put your fuckin arms out.”
She stops. Relunctantly, she puts her arms out towards his neck. He scoops her up into him tightly. This was something he should have done years ago. She buries her face into his neck. Feeling the warmth of her breath on his skin relieved him. Fuck I really do miss her.
Being back in his arms feels like home.
They hugged for what seemed like hours. He felt so good on her skin. Just like old times. If they lingered here long enough she would want to kiss him. Her lips were already about his neck. Fight it. All of a sudden he squeezed her tighter around her lower back. This was a 3 years too late hug and it was making her sad. She wanted out soon. She didn’t waste tears on him anymore.
“Can you let me go now? Please?” She choked. He shook his head no. “I really don’t want to cry in front of you…”
He sighed as he let her go but it was too late. The tears were already running. He took his hands and started rubbing them away, which only made her cry more. She missed him doing that.
“I love you. I still love you.”
She cried out, “Shut the fuck up. Why the fuck are you doing this to me?! I was good. I was ok. Why are you saying all of this now?!”
“Because I think you should know it never went away. I thought I should let you go so we could live our lives. But I never stopped loving you.”
She covered her cries with her hands as he confessed to her. He knew this wasn’t an ideal place to say these things but when else would he have the chance? It was breaking him to see her cry like this. All he could do was help her wipe them away. Shortly she started gathering herself, the tears slowed down. Her breathing became calm again. She glared up at him.
“You’re a fucking asshole.”
“Yeah that hasn’t changed.”
She tried to fight back a laugh. “Yeah I see.” She sighs, “I still love you too.”