Are you nervous!?
If you haven’t read these little series, check out the first two!
I was cursing the man I loved. My life always seems to be going the way I want it to, until it isn’t anymore. This isn’t just some bump in the road though, this is everything. Absolutely everything.
It’s my past, being 16 years old when my father passed away and I had no one to turn to except the blue eyed boy down the street who I’d fallen in love with. Who would hold me every night just to let me cry and talk. I shut out the world that year, I hated everyone, except him because how could I hate gentle hands that held mine during the worst day of my life? How could I hate the one person who punched Johnny Kerr in the face for telling me to get over it already? I couldn’t.
It was being 18 years old, watching him load up his car down the street to head off to college while I stayed behind. I never knew my heart could break like that, thinking about how his future is about to start and it wouldn’t include me. It was watching him walk my way to say goodbye and I could hardly talk without my voice breaking. He hugged me for so long and so tight that I almost felt the emotion inside of him. It was when he let go and looked at me that I saw it and I almost told him how I felt right then and there but I knew he wouldn’t leave and I couldn’t hold him back like that. So I watched him walk away and get in his car once again loving him silently with all I had.
It’s my present, right now being 23 years old and finally having that blue eyed boy be mine. Or so I thought. I’m sitting here at the airport waiting to board my flight to the most important meeting of my life and I’m crying. I’m crying because I could lose everything. He’s breaking me again and he doesn’t even know it. He know’s I saw the message from Layla, I could see it written all over his face when I left this morning. He’s called me about a dozen times but I don’t need to hear his explanation’s right now. I don’t need his bullshit.
The thing that sucks the most about loving your best friend and even being with him is that you know everything. I know all the girls he’s been with and I know all about the girlfriends he loved. I know it all because I’m the one person he talks to, but now he’s with me and he loves me but he also was with her and he loved her. It’s so damn confusing. I really just want to rip my hair out because my head feels like it’s about to burst, but before I do I hear them call my flight number. It’s time to board the plane and I’m suddenly happy I’m leaving right now because I have time to think and not make a stupid decision. I know if I was still home, I would have walked away. I always run, no matter what.
We land in Chicago and I’m blown away by how big the city really is, my meeting isn’t until tomorrow but tonight I am meeting one of the workers for dinner and drinks. I reach the hotel and reach for my phone but I’m hesitant to turn it back on, I already know Easton has been trying to reach me nonstop.
“You need to call me.”
“Did you land yet, are you ok?”
“Damnit Peyton, YOU NEED TO TALK TO ME.”
“Please babe, I swear to God it’s not even close to what you think it was.”
After going through the text messages, I notice I also have like 20 missed calls so I turn my phone on silent and slide it back into my purse, I can’t handle it right now. Since it’s late, Alicia, the girl I’ve been in contact with about this meeting for the last three months decides to just have dinner at the hotel resturant since it’s been a long day for me. She’s as sweet as she has sounded through phone calls and emails and I’m pleased to find out she’s from a small southern town like me. We hit it off immediatley and soon after a couple drinks my nerves are settling and I feel back to normal.
The next morning my mind is a little fuzzy from all the wine the night before but I gather up my thoughts and I make myself prepare for this meeting. I’ve dreamed of opening a rescue shelter for animals since I can remember. I grew up on a small farm in Georgia and my dad and I would always do anything we could to take in all the ones that needed help or just food and water. After my dad passed away though, my mom wanted it to stop because she couldn’t help care for them and she didn’t have the money to keep it up. I knew when I was in the right place and had the money I would open an official shelter up. This meeting is the big one, it’s to help my funding, to help find sponsors and a good marketing team to help me with getting my program up on it’s feet and running.
I take a deep breath and open the door, ready to put some caffeine and food in my stomach only to find Easton on the other side of it. My heart completely stops like it always does when I see his face. He looks so tired and worried, I see it all in the way he is looking at me.
“How….how did you get here?” I asked, so shocked I can hardly even speak. He let’s out a big sigh and then pins me with those intense blue eyes again.
“I took the first flight I could find, I couldn’t..I can’t let you walk away from me without explaining everything Peyton.” This time it’s my turn to sigh, “What is there to explain Easton? Why were you even talking to her? You know what, I’m not doing this. I have a meeting today. You can’t be here distracting me and breaking my heart when It’s the most important day of my career!” I yell, now I’m pissed. He can’t be showing up here taking down all my damn walls when I have things to do! I can’t let all of this get to me, it will be all I think about. I try to push past him, but he holds me in place.
“Peyton please!” He says in a rushed breath, he looks so frustrated right now I would almost think it was cute if I wasn’t so mad at him. “Please just let me talk to you, I know this is horrible timing and I didn’t even know what I was doing until I found myself getting on that damn plane.” I laugh a little because he is ridiculous, “I didn’t ask you to come here, you could have waited until tomorrow to tell me everything.” This time some other look washes over his face before he says, “I didn’t want you to run, every time you get scared you run and I needed to explain myself.”
“Well then explain yourself already Easton!” I say louder than I expected, almost yelling again. “I was going to propose damnit! I wanted to propose to you on your opening day!” He yells back at me, running his fingers through his hair that I love doing when we are making love. “You what?” I ask, too shocked to even move.
“I needed flowers P, flowers. I was going to pick out the ones I needed last night, I had it all planned out for your opening day. The ring, the words I would say to you, the way you make me feel, everything I’ve ever wanted, I had it all planned out but I needed the damn flowers…Layla owns the only flower shop in town and maybe I went about it all the wrong ways. Maybe I should have called Susan instead to plan it all out but I always find a way to screw something up. You out of all people should know that by now.”
He grabs my face and kisses the side of my mouth and rests his forehead against mine. “Baby, I would never in a million years intentionally hurt you. I’ve wanted this for 10 years, I’ve wanted you for 10 years and I know this is probably a shock to you but 10 years is too long when you’ve been in love all that time. I don’t want to wait anymore. I know I love you and I want to save all the crazy animals you want, I want all the babies you want, I want everything you will give to me because I will give you everything Peyton.”
Flowers. He needed stupid flowers! Can you believe that!? Instead of simply asking like a normal person would do, I completely ruined the most perfect plan I’ve ever heard because I’m a jealous, emotional woman. This man is once again telling me everything I have wanted to hear for the last 10 years and showing me that heart of his that no one else in the world could ever compete with. And this time I’m not running away. I grab his face and pull him down to me and kiss him. “Please do everything you just said, I’m so sorry. I should have just asked you but I run and you know I run, always. I’m not running anymore though, I want everything.” Is all I could say before he pushed me into the room and let me feel everything he just said to me and more.
He’s my past, he’s my present….
He’s my future.