Thursday, July 29, 2010

Chapter 42

Sidney pulled off the highway into the rest stop. He was about halfway to Misty’s house and fighting sleep. The sun had come up a while ago, but it wasn’t helping to keep him awake. He’d only gotten a couple of hours of sleep on the flight and he needed something to keep him up. He walked inside, grabbed a couple of energy drinks and something to snack on before filling his car up with gas and continuing on his way.

He’d spent the last 5 hours going over in his head what he wanted to say to Misty when he saw her. He’d rehearsed speech after speech and nothing seemed right. He was in the middle of trying out another one when he heard his phone go off. He saw that it was Talbot and put it on speakerphone.

“Interested in a little gaming action?” Max asked.

“I can’t. I’m not home,” Sidney told him.

“Where the hell are you this early?”

“Just out.” Sidney didn’t want to tell him, didn’t want to get into it right now.

“Then get home and get on,” Max demanded. Sidney sighed.

“I can’t. It’s not possible.” Suddenly Max started to laugh and Sidney wasn’t sure why.

“Jesus, you’re going to get her, aren’t you?” he asked through the laughter. Sidney didn’t have a response and he couldn’t think of one. Instead of replying he just hung up on Talbot’s laughter.

Sidney finished the drive with no more interruptions. He also didn’t get any closer to what he wanted to say to Misty. Everything sounded so dumb. As he pulled into her driveway he realized he was just going to have to wing it. He took a deep breath to prepare himself before he got out of the car.

Sidney walked up to the front door, hesitated for a second before ringing the doorbell. He waited on the doorstep, hearing Bauer’s barking coming from inside. When a little bit of time passed without anyone coming to the door, he rang the doorbell again. He realized dejectedly after a while that no one was home. Great. Now what?

He walked back to his car and got in, wondering what his next move would be. Should he just wait until Misty got home? That might seem a little weird if her parents got home first. What would he say to them? Then he remembered the name of the restaurant where Misty worked. That must be where she was.

Sidney looked up the address of the restaurant on his phone and then found a set of directions. He backed out of the driveway and started on his way. If it seemed desperate, that’s because it was. He absolutely had to talk to Misty. There was no way he could handle not having her in his life anymore.

He pulled up to the restaurant in the early afternoon and found that there weren’t many cars parked. That was good because there wouldn’t be a restaurant full of people watching him bumble through some poorly thought out speech about how sorry he was and how much he loved her. He walked through the door and paused just inside, looking around for Misty.

“Table for one?” a girl asked him, walking over to the hostess station.

“Uh, no. I was just looking for Misty Harris,” he told the girl who was holding a menu in her hand, and had half her body turned and already walking towards a table.

“Oh. Misty’s not working today,” she told him. Sidney sighed in frustration. Now what the hell was he going to do?

“I don’t suppose you would know what her plans were for today?” he asked the girl. She just shook her head and apologized. Then Sidney had another idea. “Do you know what gym she uses?”

“I don’t, but let me see if someone else does,” she offered before walking away, giving him a strange look as she did so.

“Can I help you?” a male voice asked him. He turned to see an older man walk over.

“I was just looking for someone,” Sidney told him. The man smiled at him and nodded.

“Misty, right?” Sidney nodded. “When you find her, tell her that Jake said he doesn’t expect to see her back at work for at least two weeks.”

Sidney smiled and nodded after realizing he’d just spoken to Misty’s boss, and her boss had just given him some hope. A moment later the girl he’d spoken with was back and she told him the gym that Misty worked out at. He went back out to his car, looked up the gym on his phone and headed in that direction. If Misty wasn’t there, he had no idea what he was going to do.

When Sidney pulled into the parking lot he hoped that he’d find her finally. He was almost afraid that if he didn’t find her here that he’d have to just give up and head home or camp out in front of her house. He got out of the car and walked through the door. He was immediately on alert and looking for her.

The person at the front desk greeted him, but he ignored the girl and moved to a spot where he could see the entire gym. He began to look around, scanning the faces of everyone who was working out. He began to lose hope when he didn’t see her. Then he looked at the last treadmill in the furthest corner of the gym. There he saw her running and his heart sped up. It was time.

I hopped onto a treadmill at the end of the row, trying to avoid as much contact with other people, especially Eli since I'd ignored his calls and hadn't shown up at his friends for New Years, as possible. I began my run, trying to block everything else out. As I ran I casually looked around the gym. From my vantage point I could see the entire gym and everyone in it. I watched the other members go through their routines, not focusing on anyone in particular.

About halfway through my run I began to notice that almost everyone was stopping their workouts. It seemed strange to me that everyone would finish at the same time, but I noticed something else. They were all looking at the same spot towards the entrance of the gym and whispering to each other. In confusion I turned to see what they were looking at. I almost stumbled on the belt of the treadmill when my eyes met Sidney’s.

He began to make his way over to me and I hit the pause button to stop the belt from moving. I removed my earbuds after hitting pause on my iPod, never taking my eyes off of Sidney’s. My breath was caught in my throat as I tried to figure out why exactly he was here.

The entire gym watched Sidney walk straight over to me and my heart started to pound as he got closer. I began to brace myself for whatever he had to say to me now, but I wasn’t prepared for what happened. In one smooth motion Sidney reached me, brought his hands up to my face and kissed me.

My head began to spin as I felt his lips on mine. For a moment I was stunned before my body gave in and I kissed him back. I melted into him and the whole world seemed to fall away. His hands moved from my face, down my sides and wrapped around my waist as I wrapped my own around his neck.

When the kiss finally ended we were both out of breath. Our foreheads were still pressed together and we held onto each other like the world would end if we let go. As my breathing returned to normal I heard the murmur of the people in the gym and I pulled back from Sidney a bit. We looked into each other’s eyes again and I struggled to think of something to say. He beat me to it.

“I pushed you to look at schools in Pittsburgh because I’m selfish. I want you in Pittsburgh because I can’t stand to be away from you. I’ve been a mess with everything because I’m so in love with you I can’t see straight. I want you to be there so I can be with you because I love you.”

“No you don’t.” The words were out of my mouth before I realized what I was saying. He looked taken aback and I wanted to crawl under a rock and disappear. That’s not what I’d meant to say.

“You know something I don’t?” he asked, a hint of anger in his voice. I squeezed my eyes closed as I felt tears start to slide down my cheeks. This was the moment I’d been dreaming of since Sidney had left Cole Harbour and I’d just ruined it.

“I’m sorry.....I this happening? Are you really standing here and telling me that you love me?” I stammered out.

“Do I have to repeat myself? Should I prove it? You were wearing jeans, flip flops, and a purple t-shirt with your hair up in some weird messy bun thing when we first met and I’d never seen anyone so beautiful. You’ve done a million things that should have pissed me off and I found them oddly endearing. You barged into my life by dumping coffee on one of my favorite shirts and have screwed up every superstition I’ve ever had yet I can’t keep myself from wanting to see what else you can possibly fuck up. I know that a life that felt complete now feels empty when you’re not around. Yes, Misty, I am really standing here and telling you that I love you.”

I jumped off of the treadmill and into Sidney’s arms. Tears weren’t just falling now, I was practically bawling. He pulled me into him and held me as I cried tears of disbelief and joy. I clung to him afraid to let go and find that it had all been a dream. When I finally composed myself, I looked up at him.

“I’ve been dreaming of hearing you say that.” His lips found mine again and it was like bells were ringing and fireworks were going off. “I love you too,” I whispered. He grinned down at me.

“Do you want to get out of here?” he asked. I nodded and grabbed my iPod before following him outside.

“How did you get here?” I questioned when I realized that he was here in my hometown and not in Pittsburgh.

“I drove,” he replied. My eyes widened in shock and my jaw dropped.

“Are you insane?!” I exclaimed. He closed the little bit of distance between us and wrapped his arms around me.

“I just needed to see you, to tell you.” He finished that off with another kiss.

When we broke apart I got into my car and he followed me back to my house. The entire car ride my mind was racing a mile a minute. I couldn’t believe what had just happened. Sidney had literally just driven 9 hours to tell me he was in love with me, which meant he had to have left early in the morning. Things like this didn’t happen to me. They didn’t happen in real life, period. And yet when I pulled into my driveway, there he was, getting out of his car with a giant grin on his face.

“I forgot to tell you something. Jake said that he doesn’t want you back at work for at least two weeks. I guess that means you have time off,” he said. I looked at him in confusion before realizing there had to have been a way he knew where I was to come get me.

“Are you telling me you want me to come back to Pittsburgh with you?” I asked, wrapping my arms around his neck.

“I couldn’t go back without you.” I pressed my lips to his and savored this new feeling that had come over me. Any leftover pain and anger was gone, replaced by only happiness and ecstasy. This had been the best day of my life so far. Sidney loved me too.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Chapter 41

Three things before I post this chapter (one is kind of long, sorry).....

1. There is an amazing story out there that it seems not many know about. I think you should check it out. This is one of my favorite stories out there right now, and it deserves to have so many more people reading it.

2. So I realize a flight from Vancouver to Pittsburgh is a long flight no matter what way you cut it, but for the story I needed it to be short and landing at a certain time. Hey, it's fiction, right? I can do what I want, haha.

3. I was caught by surprise by how many people blamed Sid and solely Sid for this whole fight and Misty leaving to the point of getting a question from someone asking why Misty was always perfect. Maybe it's because since this is my story and I know what my characters are feeling and going through that I didn't write it as well as I could for everyone to understand. It was not my intention for Sid to be the bad guy. Through this whole story Misty has been fighting with herself to be independent and not need someone and yet for most of it, she's felt like she needed Sidney. Time after time she said things she didn't mean and did what she could to push him away, using any tiny excuse as a way to guard against making the same mistakes she did in the past. She used Sidney simply talking to another girl he had a past with as a catalyst, refused to talk to him about it, said something she knew would be incredibly hurtful to him, and then ran away again. I'm sorry that the way I wrote it, the blame was places solely on Sidney's shoulders, but really, my intention was not for that to happen. To me, the only crime he committed was not sucking it up and telling her he loved her earlier.....but he was scared of that too. My apologies again for failing in telling that story. Hopefully I'll never have to explain something I've written again, haha. Anyway, off my soap box and on to the next chapter.....

I hit the stop button on the treadmill and stepped off. After cleaning it I made my way to the designated area for stretching in the gym. I sat down on a mat and began to stretch out all the built up lactic acid in my muscles. As I stretched I felt the soreness in my muscles. Ever since I’d gotten home my runs on the treadmill had become longer and more grueling.

“Hey, Misty,” I heard a male voice say as a mat was plopped down literally a mere foot away from me despite there being no one else in the area.

“Hey, Eli,” I greeted him. He sat down and started to stretch, despite the fact that I hadn’t seen him do anything other than pull-ups so far today.

“How is everything?” he asked. I gritted my teeth at the annoyance.

“Fine,” I lied as I folded my body over my outstretched leg, feeling the pull in my hamstring.

“Can you believe it’s Christmas already?” I felt my body stiffen at the mention of my second favorite holiday that I wasn’t at all looking forward to this year.

“The year went by quickly.” I switched positions, turning my back on Eli, trying to signal that I was not at all in the mood to talk.

Eli had been hitting on me for as long as I could remember, even when he knew I was dating someone. I’d hardly given him the time of day, but that didn’t discourage him. He was one of those guys in the gym that wore the tight beaters that showed off their upper body. He was also one of those guys that only worked out his upper body because he figured that’s what girls liked. Basically, Eli was your typical gym meathead, and so not my type.

“What are you doing for New Years?” he asked, obviously not getting the point.

“I’m not really sure,” I told him truthfully. I hadn’t made plans, not really sure that I was going to be feeling any better by then.

“A friend of mine is having a party. You’re more than welcome to come,” he invited me.

“Yeah, maybe,” I heard myself saying.

The second it was out of my mouth I was shocked. Eli had invited me to do things about a million and a half times and I’d always turned him down. What the hell was I thinking? When I saw the look on Eli’s face I realized he was just as shocked as I was. A grin slowly formed on his face and he hopped up from his spot and walked over to the front desk. He returned with a piece of paper and a pen.

“Just give me your number and I’ll call you with the details,” he said, handing them to me. I was stuck now, and just obliged, even though I really didn’t have any desire to go.

“Okay, I’m going to go finish my workout. I guess I’ll talk to you later,” I told him, standing up and beginning to head back to the weights.

“Sounds good!” he called after me. I squeezed my eyes closed and fought back the tears that were threatening to spill out. I needed to get a grip.

A few days later I sat in my room after opening presents Christmas morning with my family. My parents and grandparents were busy drinking coffee and making brunch while Nick was shacked up in his room testing out one of his new video games. I was sitting on my futon staring at the wall in front of me.

The wall had previously been covered with pictures of Sidney and everyone back in Cole Harbour. Now it was empty. I let my head fall back against the wall behind me and tried to swallow back the lump that was forming in my stomach. I hadn’t talked to Sidney since the day I’d left. Half of me didn’t want to talk to him and half of me wished he’d call. I doubted he would. Why would he want to talk to me after what I'd said and done to him? I couldn't even forgive myself.

As if on autopilot, I reached over to my purse and absentmindedly grabbed for the picture inside. It wasn’t until my hand was inside and groping around that I realized that I’d left the picture of Sidney and I at his house. I hated that even after the past week and a half I was still reaching for that picture. I also hated that I’d forgotten to pick it up off the counter when I’d left that morning. Even if we hadn’t talked, and I wasn’t sure when or if we ever would, I still wanted that picture to look at to cheer me up.

After being called out to the dining room for brunch and being forced to witness all the sympathetic looks directed at me by my family, I locked myself back in my room. I’d told my family I was going to watch some of the DVD’s I’d gotten, but they knew better. They knew I hadn’t been right since I’d gotten back unexpectedly early from Pittsburgh. I hadn’t told them anything despite all the questions, but they knew whatever had happened was bad.

A knock sounded on my door later that afternoon and I paused the movie I hadn’t been paying any attention to. I got off the bed, unlocked the door, and pulled it open to find Evanne standing there. She rolled her eyes at me when she saw that I wasn’t even dressed before walking past me and flopping down onto the futon.

“Merry Christmas!” she said cheerfully. I gave her a completely unamused look before sitting down next to her. “Okay, it’s time. Start getting over it, or call him.”

“I’m doing my best here,” I argued. She rolled her eyes at me again.

“Whatever you say. I came to cheer you up, because I knew you’d be sulking in here all day. I’m having a party at my place for New Years. Don’t even try to come up with an excuse not to come. You know I can’t have fun without my favorite partner in crime.”

“Evie,” I started, but she shut me up by putting her hand in the air, signaling for me to stop.

“You have something better to do?” she asked.

“Well, Eli did invite me to his friends party,” I told her. She nearly burst out laughing.

“That juice monkey will not give up, will he?” I cracked a small smile. “See! I knew I could cheer you up!” My smile faded and she sighed.

“I miss him,” I whispered.

“Then you should call him,” she replied. I shook my head as tears began to build up again.

“I don’t know that I can handle talking to him or seeing him when I still feel so raw. I love him, Evie, and he doesn’t love me back. I don’t know how to be okay with that.” She pulled me into a hug.

“Don’t worry, he’ll come around. It’s impossible not to fall for Misty Harris once you’ve met her.”

Sidney sat on the plane headed home from Vancouver, his emotions on overdrive. It had been almost a month since Misty had up and left in the middle of the night. He hadn’t quite been the same since then, and tonight had really pushed him over the edge. Watching Mason Raymond assist on two goals while helping the Canucks kick their ass pissed him off.

Sidney had been dealing, or more so coping, with Misty not being in his life right now. Watching Raymond parade around the ice like he was hot shit just made Sid think of how he’d treated Misty. He’d thought going into the game that it’d be fine, that she’d never cross his mind, but he’d been wrong. The first time he’d spotted Raymond, Misty hadn’t left his mind at all. He missed her. He couldn’t stop thinking about her, about all the mistakes he’d made with her.

“Something on your mind?” Flower asked, turning to him.

“Why do you say that?” he asked.

“You declined to play COD with everyone and you’re just staring at the back of the seat, a barely touched meal on the tray in front of you,” Flower responded.

“Stop being such a whiny bitch. There’s plenty of pussy out there!” Talbot chimed in from a few seats away. Sidney wouldn’t even dignify that with a response.

“What’s the deal with Misty?” Flower asked. Sidney shrugged.

“She left. She accused me of not being who she thought I was and disappeared in the middle of the night. I’ve told you that,” Sidney groaned.

“Yeah, but there’s got to be more to it than that, mon ami,” Flower pushed. Sidney closed his eyes and sighed. Maybe it would help to talk to Flower.

“I loved her. Love her. I was going to tell her the day she left. And she didn’t just leave. She made sure to leave things that told me she wanted nothing to do with me anymore. I thought maybe she felt the same way, but you don’t do that when you love someone, right?” Sidney questioned.

“And you’re sure that was her intention? You’re sure that she doesn’t want anything to do with you anymore?”

“No. No, I don’t know that. I fucked up. She asked me if there was anything that should keep her in Pittsburgh and instead of telling her, I was too wrapped up in being stung by what she said to me. Maybe she wouldn’t have left. Maybe I would know the truth,” Sidney finally admitted.

“Then call her. You won’t feel better until you know.” Sidney nodded and settled back into his seat.

Maybe Flower was right. The worst thing that could happen if he called would be Misty hanging up on him. At least then he’d know. He drifted off to sleep not long after and didn’t wake up until the plane was landing. He got off and walked over to his car. He got in, started it up, and Coach’s words ran through his head. “Tomorrow’s off, boys. See you Monday morning.” Suddenly Sidney knew what he had to do.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Chapter 40

“Why did you run off like that?” Sidney asked as we drove towards his house.

“I’m not in the mood to talk right now, if you don’t mind,” I growled through gritted teeth.

“No! You’re going to fucking talk. You don’t know you’re way around the city and you could have gotten lost. Something could have happened to you! What the fuck were you thinking?!” he yelled. I’d never heard Sidney yell before, especially at me, and I jumped in surprise at the volume his voice had hit.

“Yeah, because you yelling at me is going to make me want to talk,” I said sarcastically.

“Don’t. Don’t do that. This is me, Misty. Don’t treat me like I’m nothing.”

I narrowed my eyes at him, but didn’t say anything. He was just going to have to suck it up and wait until I was ready to talk. That moment was not right now. He tried a few more times to get me to tell him what was going on, but I never made a sound. We pulled up to his house and I jumped out of the car even before it had stopped moving and walked into the house, and started for the stairs.

“Stop!” Sidney yelled, grabbing my wrist, not hard enough to hurt, but hard enough to keep me from pulling out of his grasp and walking away.

“What, Sidney? What do you want from me?” I asked in exasperation.

“Just tell me what the hell is wrong. I don’t know what happened back there.” He looked at me expectantly.

“If you don’t want me here, just tell me.”

“What are you talking about?”

“I’m obviously just in your way,” I told him. A flash of understanding passed through his eyes and he sighed.

“Misty…..” he let his voice trail off and I knew it was true then. I was in his way.

“Maybe coming here was a mistake,” I finally said. He narrowed his eyes at me.

“You think it was a mistake to come here?” he asked, anger lacing his tone.

“Wasn’t it? The life you live here is so different from the one you live in Cole Harbour. Maybe I only fit into that life and not this one. Maybe I shouldn’t have ever come.” He let go of my wrist and clenched his hands into fists.

“Are you saying that I’m not the same person?” he asked through gritted teeth.

“Yeah, maybe that is what I’m saying.”

“That’s so typical,” he shot at me.

“What is?” I asked, already bracing myself to have to fight back.

“Something doesn’t go the way you want it so you run,” he growled at me. I felt renewed anger rise up in me.

“I can’t even talk to you right now. You’re being such an asshole!” I yelled before turning to go upstairs.

“Go ahead, run away again! That solves everything, doesn’t it?” he shouted back. I spun back on him.

“I will. I’ll run away. Maybe I should just go home!” That seemed to stop Sidney dead in his tracks. He didn’t respond. I thought this was it. This was his last chance. “There’s nothing keeping me here, right?”

“Misty,” Sidney sighed. I waited for him to say something, anything to tell me that he wanted me to stay. Nothing came.

“Is there? Is there something here I should stay for? Is there something that would keep me in Pittsburgh?” I stood there waiting. I waited for what seemed like eternity. Just say something, Sid. Just tell me to stay.

“I guess not.”

It felt like my heart stopped beating, my lungs deflated, and my legs were going to give out. Instead of standing there in front of him waiting for the inevitable tears to fall, I turned and finished running up the stairs. I ran into the guest room where all of my stuff was and flung the door closed behind me. I turned the lock and collapsed onto the bed, letting the tears come. Sidney didn’t love me.

A while later, tears still flowing freely down my face, I heard a soft knock at the door. I didn’t trust my own voice, and remained quiet. Sidney knocked again and called out my name, but I just couldn’t face him right now. A third knock came, and I squeezed my eyes closed, hoping he’d just think I was sleeping and would go away. Eventually I heard footsteps walk down the hall and into his room.

Hours passed and I couldn’t fall asleep. My heart was broken and never in my life had I ever felt like this before. I came to a decision that I needed to just get away. I couldn’t stay here anymore. I needed to reevaluate whether I could have him in my life when he’d rejected me the way he had. I stood up and quietly packed up my things.

I glanced at the clock when I was done and saw that it was barely 6 am. I slowly opened the door, peering down the hallway to make sure Sidney hadn’t heard it. When I didn’t hear anything, I crept out of the room and down the hallway to the stairs. Then I made my way out of the house, locking up behind me, and got into my car.

A lump formed in my throat as I turned the key. I glanced back at Sidney’s dark house and wondered if I was doing the right thing. He’d been right the night before when he said I run from things I’m not comfortable with. Maybe there was a reason for that. Maybe it was my heart’s way of telling me that I was in trouble. Either way I whispered out a goodbye and backed out of the driveway before heading for New York.

Sidney lay under the blankets staring up at the ceiling. He was a fool. A monumental fool. He was going to have some serious explaining and groveling to do when he saw Misty. Part of him felt like he really hadn’t done anything wrong and she’d just overreacted and part of him felt like he hadn’t done anything to help either.

She’d given him the perfect opportunity to tell her that he was in love with her. She’d asked him if there was anything in Pittsburgh that would keep her there. He should have told her yes. He should have told her that he was there and he couldn’t face being there anymore without her. He hadn’t.

Instead he’d let the anger and sting of being told he was different here than he was at home keep his mouth shut. That had hurt, and he felt it was kind of a low blow. He wasn’t any different. At least he didn’t think so. Could he really help that the stressful and extravagant lifestyle he was forced to live in Pittsburgh was very different from the laid-back one he much preferred in Cole Harbour?

He’d spent years stretching his life much too thin for fear of ever saying no to anyone. If there was anything he just couldn’t do, that was the first thing people said to him. ‘You’re letting hockey get to you. You’re not the same sweet boy you were growing up.’ It wasn’t true. He just knew that wasn’t true, but people expected so much from him. At what point was he allowed to have a life of his own? He wanted it to be before he was 50 and retired and too old and cynical to enjoy it.

When Misty asked him why she should stay all he heard was ‘you’re not the same.’ If there was ever one thing someone he cared about could say to him to really hurt him, it would be that. So instead of telling her he wanted her to stay, he let her think he didn’t care what she did. Now he knew he was going to have to tell her he did care.

He glanced at the clock next to his table and saw that it was almost 7. There was no sunlight coming in between the drapes and that told him it was a gray and overcast day. It fit in perfectly with his mood. He was exhausted from not sleeping much, only drifting in and out, his head spinning with all the things he should have done and said last night.

Then he remembered what he had said to himself the night before. He’d said that today was the day he’d tell Misty how he felt. He was going to hold to that promise to himself. It didn’t matter that she was probably still asleep, he threw back the covers and got up anyway. Sidney put on a t-shirt and walked out of his room to the closed door of the guest room. He knocked quietly and listened for any sound. When he didn’t hear anything he knocked louder and called out Misty’s name. Still there was nothing.

“Misty, I know you’re mad at me, and I deserve it. We just really have to talk. It’s important. I don’t want you to leave Pittsburgh. I need you to stay and I need you to hear me out and hopefully forgive me. Just please open the door,” he begged.

He strained to hear her response, or better yet, the sound of her footsteps moving towards the door. Instead he heard only silence. Swallowing down his nerves he grasped the doorknob and turned it, hoping he wasn’t going to be met with an object flying at his head at barging in. He wasn’t at all prepared for the sight he did find.

He would have taken an object to the head over what he was seeing right now any day. Instead he found that the bed was made. On it sat piles of the clothes that Misty had bought when she’d gone shopping with Vero. He saw white slips on top of the piles and moved closer to the bed to see what they were. He felt his heart ache when he saw them. The clothes had been divided up by store and each receipt was lying on its matching pile. A larger piece of paper lay in the middle of the piles and he leaned over to pick it up.

Since you can’t return the clothes I wore, I took them with me. I’ll send a check in the mail soon for them.

That was it. That was all it said. Sidney didn’t need to read anymore to understand what was going on. His heart felt like it was being ripped to shreds as he sat on the bed, his legs unable to hold him up right now. Misty was gone and she wasn’t coming back. He didn’t think she would ever come back. He’d blown it. He’d blown everything.

He sat there staring at the note for what felt like eternity. It pained him to see it, yet he couldn’t look away. All he could see was the too formal and over the top for a note like that curly handwriting of Misty’s. It was something he’d always loved about her. Her handwriting belonged on royal documents or wedding invitations, not on everyday letters. Now it only brought him pain, because the last thing he’d ever see in her handwriting was a goodbye note that couldn’t even include the goodbye.

He thought of calling her and begging her to come back, but he knew it was no use. He knew Misty and he knew she wouldn’t even have her phone on. He got up and left the room as it was, closing the door behind him so he wouldn’t have to be reminded every time he walked past it. He made his way downstairs and into the kitchen. He froze in his tracks when he saw what was resting on the breakfast bar.

He picked up the photo sitting there and knew, even if he’d thought there was a chance before, that Misty was telling him to stay out of her life for good. He looked at the image of himself grinning happily, Misty on his back her cheek pressed to his, the same grin on her face, that had been taken back in Cole Harbour. She’d told him that it was her favorite picture of them and that she always had it with her so if she was ever upset she could just pull it out and smile. Now it was sitting here, far away from her. He had lost her.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Chapter 39

Just so everyone knows, I only recently discovered that I had my blog disabled for anonymous users to comment and that has now changed. Everyone can leave comments on any of my stories now. Sorry about that!

“You’re really going to go again?” Talbot asked in surprise as Sidney buttoned up his dress shirt.

“Misty’s only here for another week so I want to make sure she has a good time,” Sidney replied. “It’s not like I’m turning into you.”

“Funny,” Max deadpanned.

Sidney finished getting dressed and walked out with Talbot and Flower to go get Misty and Vero and head out to Diesel. He understood the surprise his teammates were showing him in his willingness to go out, but it was all for Misty. He wanted her to have a good time and really get to know everyone. As much as he’d love to keep her locked up at his house and only with him, she was too social for that.

He followed his teammates into the family room and spotted Misty immediately. He’d obviously already seen her today since he’d driven her into the rink, but something about seeing her at this moment caused his breath to catch in his throat. She was just laughing with some of the girls, but it struck him how beautiful she was, and he knew. Not tonight because they’d be out, but tomorrow. Tomorrow he was going to tell Misty how he felt about her.

He walked over towards her and she turned to look at him as he did. He watched her smile grow when their eyes locked. It was difficult not to just pull her into his arms and kiss her right then and there. Somehow he felt she wouldn’t appreciate the gesture in front of his entire team and their families. Instead he took her hand as they walked out to his car and he marveled for probably the millionth time that she didn’t pull away. It gave him hope.

“I’m going to be sad to leave,” she announced when they’d gotten into the car. He liked hearing that.

“Oh yeah?” he pushed, hoping to hear why. Maybe she’d make it easy on him, and tell him she had feelings for him right now. Wouldn’t that be nice?

“They have the best jalapeƱo cheese here,” she responded. He laughed because he couldn’t help himself. Not only was it random and so Misty, but he was a fool to think she would just confess everything sitting here in his car outside the rink.

They drove over to Diesel and went inside where some of his teammates had already taken up post. Sidney spent most of the night by Misty’s side, with either his hand resting on hers or his arm around her waist. He couldn’t help himself. It just felt so good to be in any sort of contact with her. He never wanted to let go of her.

Eventually Misty pulled away to go to the bathroom and he was left standing with some of the guys looking out over the railing down at the people below. A waving hand caught his attention from the corner of his eye and he turned to see who was waving and who they were waving at. He felt his stomach drop in annoyance. Sabrina was waving right at him, and smiling.

He gave her a small nod, but didn’t smile or wave back. He didn’t want her up here jeopardizing anything with Misty tonight. She didn’t seem to take the hint when he turned away, because he found her making her way towards the stairs to come up. Sidney hoped she’d be turned away, but unfortunately security recognized her as being someone who had been up here and let her through.

“Hey, Sid!” she greeted him with a smile, bee lining right over to him.

“Hey,” he responded less than enthusiastically.

He kept an eye out for Misty as Sabrina talked his ear off. The second he spotted Misty he was out of there. Minute after minute ticked by and he pretended to be listening to whatever Sabrina was prattling on about while searching for Misty. Eventually he got worried when he couldn’t see her anywhere. That worry escalated when Talbot ran over to him.

“Misty’s gone,” Max announced, cutting Sabrina off.

“Who’s Misty?” he heard her ask, but he didn’t respond.

“What do you mean she’s gone?” Sidney questioned.

“She ran out. I begged her to wait for one of us to give her a ride, but I’m worried she won’t,” Max told him. Sidney immediately ran for the exit, Max on his heels.

“Why would she do that?” Sidney asked in a panic when they got outside and Misty was nowhere in sight.

“You’re fucking oblivious, aren’t you?” Max shot at him.

Sidney knew exactly what he meant, but he didn’t have time to argue. He’d been watching for Misty the whole time, but just never saw her. Sidney turned to a bouncer at the door and asked if he’d seen Misty, doing his best to describe her and what she was wearing. The bouncer told him she’d taken off, walking around the corner and disappearing.

“Start calling her,” Sidney ordered to Max as he ran to his car and peeled out of his parking space and started racing around the downtown Pittsburgh streets searching for Misty.

I walked out of the bathroom and instead of walking back over to Sidney I decided to take a detour and see if any of the girls were in the mood to dance. I made a stop at the bar for a round of shots for the girls, a drink for me, and carried the tray over, setting it down on the table.

“Shots first, dance second,” I said as I sat down between Vero and Heather.

Everyone picked up a shot glass, but there were no smiles or laughs coming from the group. I looked around at all of them, lifting my eyebrows in question. I watched as they all forced smiles on their faces and clinked our glasses together before taking the shot. I prepared to stand up to go dance, but no one else moved. Something was going on. I turned around to look behind me and saw Sidney and that girl, Sabrina, standing by the railing and talking.

“It’s not a big deal,” I heard Vero say from next to me. Despite the ache in my chest I turned back to the table and shrugged before taking a sip from my drink.

“I know,” I replied. I sat with the group instead of dancing, but remained quiet. He was going to do this again? He was going to ditch me all night for this girl again? Yeah right he didn’t have any feelings for her.

“Ladies!” Max called walking over and flopping down practically on my lap. “What’s going on?”

“You’re a Neanderthal,” I joked as I pushed him off of me. He wrapped his arms around my shoulders and laughed.

“Care to dance?” he asked. I shook my head.

“No thanks,” I declined. He looked surprised first, and then sympathetic, like he understood why I didn’t want to move.

“It’s not a big deal,” he told me. I felt my anger boil over then and shot out of my seat.

“Why does everyone keep telling me it’s not a big deal?! I’m a fucking big girl. I don’t need you all babysitting me!” I shot at him.

I stepped over his legs, which were in my way, and ran down the stairs, and towards the exit. I slipped my jacket on as I stepped outside and I held my hand up trying to flag down a taxi as it drove by. It continued on, full of people and I waited for another one. I just wanted to get out of there. I couldn’t watch Sidney and that girl anymore and I couldn’t be around everyone when they were feeling sorry for me.

“Hey, hold on!” I heard Max call as I waved down another taxi. It pulled over just as Max got to me.

“I’m going home,” I told him when the taxi stopped. Max ignored me and turned to the taxi, waving at the driver to continue on. I scowled when the driver listened and drove off. “What the fuck?!”

“I’ll take you home, okay? I just have to tell Sidney you’re leaving,” he said.

“Why would he care? I’m going home,” I returned as I held my hand up for another taxi. Max grabbed my hand and pulled it out of the air.

“Fine, I won’t tell him, but let me get you home. Just let me go grab my keys.” I sighed and crossed my arms over my chest.

Max ran back inside as I stood on the sidewalk waiting for him. Eventually I got sick of waiting and without seeing any more taxi’s I just started to walk. Maybe I’d find one to take me home on another street. I began to wander, not sure where I was going as I searched for a taxi to take me home. I felt my phone vibrating, but ignored it. If it was Sidney, I didn’t want to talk to him.

“Are you fucking insane?!” I heard Max call after me long enough after I left that I was shivering and lost.

“I just wanted to get home,” I told him, my anger completely deflated now, and pain taking its place.

“Yeah, and I told you to wait for me,” he said angrily.

I watched him hit a button on his phone and give an address. A moment later I watched Sidney’s car fly around the corner and come to a stop on the side of the road next to us. Sidney jumped out of his car and ran over to me, pulling me into a hug.

“Are you okay?” he asked worriedly. The anger returned and mixed in with the pain and I used every ounce of my strength to push him away. He looked shocked and hurt at my reaction to him.

“Just take me home,” I ordered before getting into his car. I watched out the window as Sidney and Max had a short conversation before Max turned and walked off down the street and Sidney got into the car. This was not going to be a fun ride home.