'Thank you for telling me,' Elijah murmured.
'Thank you for listening,' I smiled, completely content. It was as though a huge weight had been lifted from my shoulders, now that I had shared my past with someone, now that I had finally talked it out. Never once did he interrupt me either or question my decision which I respected.
'I have to go now, I have other arrangements, but I'll see you around?' He stood up and I instantly felt my heart plummet.
'Okay,' I tried not to sound upset for fear of being labelled as needy or desperate.
I watched as he departed with a sorrowful gaze. Why was I sorrowful? Surely it wasn't normal to feel like this, I had known the guy less than a week and here I was feeling as though he had taken a part of me with him.
'Eurgh,' I sighed standing up and stretching the stiffness out of my limbs. It was a nice day, maybe I'd head over to the cafe and hope to see Ryder and Dinah. It'd be nice to chat with them once again.
I slowed my pace, deciding to enjoy the city and all it's glory. The air wasn't warm, but it wasn't cold either: just right. The leaves danced and swirled at my feet, flipping and gliding along without a care in the world. I could hear the sounds of children laughing, dogs barking, a plane overhead and I smiled in genuine happiness: something I hadn't felt for such a long time. I didn't realize how bottled up my emotions had been and how much relief I would feel once I'd broken the seal.
To my dismay the cafe held no sign of Ryder or Dinah but I decided to take a seat anyway and just watch the world go by. Ordering a coke, I took the second to last booth, the one with a perfect view of people coming and going.
'What are we doing tonight then?' I heard a girl's giggle in the booth behind mine and I smiled at how happy she sounded. Everyone seemed to be happy today.
'Well, you come to mine? We watch a film...'
Hang on, that voice sounded incredibly familiar...
'I look forward to it,' she flirted a little. 'What time?'
'About eight o clock?' As I listened in closer to the voice, realization hit me like a giant icy slap in the face.
No. It couldn't be. Could it?
I shifted to try and get a glimpse of whoever was sat behind me but the stupid seat was in the way. All I could make out were two blonde heads, both inclined closely together. It only made my suspicion and dread even worse.
I had to find out for sure. Without thinking about it I stood up and headed to the girl's bathrooms, casting a surreptitious glance on my way.
And almost walked straight into the door.
It was him.
Locked in a kiss with a beautiful blonde girl was Elijah.
The guy I was beginning to develop serious feelings for.
I ducked in the bathroom before he could see me and when I saw nobody was in there, I locked myself in a cubicle and sagged down on the floor, groaning. What had just happened? Did he have a girlfriend then? Why had he been so flirtatious with me then?
You idiot Lexi, he was probably just being friendly. You just let yourself believe you could be happy when you should know by now that isn't possible. You stupid, naive, immature idiot.
My eyes stung and with a horror I realized they had begun to fill with tears. When had it ever been okay to cry over a guy I barely knew?
I heard the door open and the clacking of heels on tiles, but I didn't care. It felt as though he had just taken my heart, chewed it up and spat it back out again. Before I could stop myself, I was crying. Embarrassingly, I let out a half hiccup/half choke which I instantly regretted as there was a knock on my door.
'Are you okay in there?'
It was Dinah!
Without thinking, I threw open the cubicle door and greeted her.
'Lexi!' she gasped. 'What happened? Are you okay?'
'What are you talking about?'
'No, I just, poked myself in the eye. It hurt.'
Okay so that had been the crappest excuse ever and Dinah wasn't convinced.
'Come on Lex, you can tell me.'
'It's Elijah,' I sighed. 'He's here with his girlfriend.'
'Oh Lex,' she frowned sympathetically. 'I'm sorry. Some guy's are such jerks, you'll find that in New York. Come sit with me and Ryder. We'll cheer you up.'
'Thanks Dinah,' I smiled gratefully, blotting at my cheeks. With one final glance in the mirror to check that I didn't look like an absolute train wreck, I followed Dinah out back into the cafe. To my relief, Elijah didn't see me but only because he had his tongue down the girl's throat.
Why do you do this so easily? I directed my thoughts to him.
I was just grateful that I hadn't gotten really into Elijah or else it would hurt a hell of a lot more.
I sat opposite Ryder who greeted me with a smile and watched as he planted a kiss on Dinah's cheek. Something strange shot through me, something completely unjustified and confusing. It felt like...jealousy.
'I'll go order you a drink,' Dinah smiled.
'I ordered a coke,' I told her.
'Oh, well I'll tell her to bring it over here.'
As Dinah slipped away, Ryder turned to face me. For some strange reason, I felt that I couldn't look him in the eyes. Blood rushed to my cheeks, causing me to blush ferociously which only baffled me even more.
Since when had I been like this around Ryder?
What the Hell was happening?
Why - Secondhand Serenade