Twenty-One: Romance In Denial

What a coward! Why, when it mattered the most, did the words not come? She had sworn to herself to tell him, but Andrea had wanted nothing more from Keith than to feel his heat close to her own, an apology in kisses. And those dark kisses did nothing to wipe Lucas from her mind, his brazen head high, his music in kisses of soft delight.

I don’t love the former. That must be it. When society wants comfort, they shall have it; once the comfort is replaced by fever, it can be thrown to the dust. 

Only, her Psychology knowledge couldn’t help her now.

As she undressed, something clattered from the pocket of her dress, the device bouncing upon the carpet: Andrea’s mobile. Her hand lingered over the phone, but no! She drew herself away, as if it were a beast. She couldn’t give in, contacting Lucas to receive his own apology (an apology, she surmised, that they both needed to be part of); she couldn’t let herself fall into that trap once more.

And yes, the sweet night had clouded her vision. At least, in this house, sleep came just as easily as panic.


Keith shuffled to work early the next day. It was a Monday and the land was just as fresh as it had been then previous day. However, Andrea could tell that the tension in the air had not subsided. It was nice to pretend to be dependent on Keith for an evening, but Andrea could no longer kid herself. What love was there in sympathy?

Jumping into her trusty car, Andrea shook her head, unable to stop the buzzing in her head. One day…one day she’d have to choose.

She stumbled into work, and, with a curse, watched as her jacket tore against the handle.

There was no end to Andrea’s grumblings as she marched into the office segment. Alexis looked up from observing her sharpened eyebrows to see the look on Andrea’s face as she cradled her forearm.

“Oh, don’t worry,” the former chirped. “I’ll patch it up, if you like.”

Andrea’s glare was stone-hard.

“You don’t sew.”

“Well, neither do you.”

“I’ll get by,” Andrea responded with a glare in the other direction.

“Andry, don’t be so stubborn.”

This comment was met by silence. Andrea occupied herself by sorting out her desk, brushing away the collection of cards that had appeared there over the last forty-eight hours.

Alexis too worked at her desk, lifting and sorting the necessary folders. She was the epitome of efficiency, whether Andrea’s behaviour frustrated her or not.

“Christine will be back in soon,” Alexis added, spotting one particular sheaf of papers. “The penultimate session of her mother’s treatment is this week.”

“Oh, hell. I can’t deal with that woman at the moment.”

Though probably glad that Andrea was speaking again, Alexis retained her bemused expression.

“Late night? That’s not you.”

“Thanks, Alexis, I know,” Andrea snapped. “I just can’t deal with men at the moment either.”

“Men? That Keith? But I thought he was the one.”

“I never said that!”

To add to her irritation, the mobile she had just set down on her desk buzzed, its LED flashing at the text. Andrea groaned and sank into her chair, he eyes closed whilst a headache bloomed.

Unfortunately, Alexis wasn’t going to let the conversation rest.

“Who’s Lucas?”

Andrea’s eyes snapped open.

“Give me that!”

“Who is he? When did you get a new man?”

“There’s no ‘new’ man. I live with Keith.” Still, curiosity had an annoying tendency to bite at her. “What does the text say?”

“Oh, yes?” Alexis’ eyes were alight. “‘Andrea, yesterday was my fault. The skies have their downfalls, but angels don’t need to follow. There’s a place for you at Twelfth Night still. Love, Lucas’. Love Lucas? That doesn’t sound like a guy who’s settled for second place.”

“Be quiet. We’re just friends.”


Alexis turned away, a grin fresh on her face. As she sorted her assignments for the day, she watched Andrea from the corner of her eye. The latter certainly had a bit of another spring in her step.

The skies have their downfalls. Even in her fury, Andrea couldn’t supress the chuckle. That was the Lucas she had known, the one who had spun her mysteries through a hundred words and silken scarves. He was the man who Andrea had tried to psychoanalyse, not that brute who had slid into all of her mind, destroying all of her conscience.

The End

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