A/N: Again, thanks
for all the reviews, this is the last chapter of the story. I hope
you enjoyed it, and I hope to write more in the future.
Stephanie walked into her office and sighed. Another day, another dollar for her father. She walked to her desk absently, intending to get a little paperwork done before doing the usual, which was go to her empty hotel room, order some room service, eat all the bad food she could get her hands on, grab a drink from the mini-bar and fall into a dreary and dreamless sleep. Oh yes, she did lead the enchanted life.
She went behind her desk and was about to sit down when a piece of paper caught her eye. She picked it up. It was nothing more than a white note-card, but she knew that she had not put it there. If it was a note from someone, she was going to be mad. She didn't want to deal with anyone's problems right now. She turned it over and read the words scrawled on it in blue ink.
The other side of the bed is cold and I really hate that.
She stood there, looking at the words, and she thought she recognized the handwriting, but she wasn't sure. It looked kind of like Chris's, but that was impossible, she shouldn't even consider that preposterous notion. Chris hated her. It was probably someone trying to play a joke on her and she wasn't in the mood for jokes. Not now, not ever. Not anymore.
"Stupid ass," she muttered to herself in regards to whoever sent her the note.
She gathered up her things, dropping the mysterious note into the trash on her way out. She didn't have time for silly things like that anymore. She only had time for work nowadays. What did it matter anymore anyways if she didn't have anything to get up for? She would just go to work and then do nothing else because what else did she have to do? She missed Chris, and that was all she could focus on. She'd give anything to have him back with her.
She walked out to her car and threw her stuff in the backseat. She'd leave it there until tomorrow morning. She'd just curl up into a ball upstairs and let the outside world go free while she balled up all her sadness within her own chest. It was better to just bottle it up, it made her ache a little less. She walked around to the front of the car and got in, but then saw another white card sitting on her windshield, jammed into the wiper. She got out and grabbed it.
Hotels are getting to be really, really boring. I wish that I could just go back home.
Stephanie looked around again, feeling like someone was watching her. She stood there in the warm night air and scanned the area at least three times. She couldn't see anyone. There were a few scattered cars, but nobody around. She sighed and looked down at the note again. Why was someone toying with her? She ripped the note up and let the pieces flutter to the ground.
"If whoever is doing this is out there, stay the hell away from me, this isn't funny!" Stephanie yelled into the dead air. "It just isn't!"
She climbed into her car again and sat there, staring at the steering wheel. She leaned her forearms across the top and leaned her head on them. She sat there, silent sobs wracking her body. She didn't want to deal with this. She didn't want some anonymous idiot playing with her mind. She was fragile, she knew that, she knew that many things had changed. She wasn't strong, she was so weak. She had lost everything the moment Chris had walked out the door and she didn't think she would ever get it back. Did she even want it back?
She composed herself and stuck the key in the ignition, turning it and listening to the car rev itself to life. She pulled out of the spot quickly and drove the way back to the hotel. She didn't want to look at anyone right now. Her bed was calling her, her melancholy was calling her and when she closed the door behind her as she entered her room, she could drop the façade that she had so carefully built for herself. Because of this, she walked through the lobby quickly.
When she was up in her room, she closed the door and slid down the back of it. She pulled her knees up to her chin and clung to them with her arms. She started crying again, the notes she had been receiving shaking her to her very core. Whoever had been doing that was a cruel bastard. She wouldn't put it past some of the people backstage who had gotten the brunt of her anger when she was in a bad mood. They would probably love to give her a little comeuppance. But this, this was nothing. Chris had already broken her to the point where she was at the very pit of pain. She had hit rock bottom.
They say when someone hits rock bottom, there's nowhere to go but up.
That person had never met Stephanie McMahon. The bottom to her sadness was an endless pit. One of those deep, deep wells where you don't think you'll ever see the bottom. When she thought she had reached the bottom, she stumbled and found there was just a little bit more to fall. So she sat there in a cold hotel room, leaning against the door, crying her eyes out. She had nobody, she felt abandoned, this was her life. This was what her life had become. It was pathetic and sad, and nothing like how she had pictured her life to be.
She hadn't been naïve enough to think that she would have the perfect life, the quintessential suburbia lifestyle with the 2.3 children, the dog, the white picket fence and the husband that was too perfect for words. She just wanted a real life. She wanted someone to love and someone to love her, and who treated her like an equal. She didn't know anything beyond that. She knew that man had been Chris, but she had been the idiot who had sent him away. And away he stayed.
So she stayed alone. Possibly forever.
She picked herself up off the dirty floor and wiped at her eyes, thanking herself for investing in a tube of water-proof mascara so she knew she didn't look like a raccoon. That didn't help the fact that she had irritated her eyes though and now her contacts were bothering her. She rubbed at her eyes a little, vision blurry, when she saw a patch of white on the ground. She leaned down and saw another damned note-card sitting there. She wondered if it had been there all along.
She took it into the bedroom, throwing it on the bed before heading into the bathroom to take her contacts off. She did that and washed her face, staring at herself in the mirror afterwards. It was always amazing looking at yourself in the mirror after you had just washed your face. It was like you were seeing your true self, washed free of the masks that you wore continually through the day. To her it was scary because without the makeup, she could see just how Chris's departure had affected her. She had aged too much in such a short time. She pulled her hair back and went into the bedroom. She was too tired to change so she just shed her clothing, leaving her in her underwear as she climbed under the covers, staring at the piece of paper. She picked it up tentatively and turned it over.
If you missed me, would you tell me?
She crumpled it up and threw it on the ground. "I hate the people I work with," she muttered to herself. Someone was trying to crack her, they were trying to drive her crazy and she wouldn't stand for it. Next week, she would have Daddy call a meeting and inform everyone that if the person who was doing this didn't stop they would be sought out and fired, or maybe arrested for stalking or something. This was absolutely ridiculous. Why would someone want to play such a horribly mean joke on her? She fell asleep with tears trailing down her face.
Just like every night.
The next day dawned too early for her, but she wanted to go home anyways. She wanted to get away from whoever the bastard was that was sending her these fucking notes. She would strangle them and hang them if she could. She was angry now, not just irate after she had read the last one last night. She had dreamt about Chris and that did nothing to curb her mood. She was just angrier and felt like she was going to burst into a giant ball of anger at any moment.
She gathered her things for her flight, skipping breakfast and just grabbing a quick cup of coffee to sustain her. She hopped her flight back home, glad for the distraction from her job. Of course, that meant the loneliness would certainly creep into her psyche while she was home. She would just have to live with it. She got her car out of long-term parking and drove home. Upon arrival, she parked her car and got out, going to the front door and finding it ajar.
Now, normal people would just turn and walk away, but Stephanie was either too dumb or she didn't care. Maybe she didn't care. Maybe if there was a burglar in there, they'd have a gun and she could be neatly taken care of. She didn't care anymore, she just didn't. Everything in her life was useless and stupid and she didn't care. Maybe she didn't even care if she died. Maybe she wanted to die. With that thought in mind, she stepped into the house.
And found that it was empty.
She dropped her purse in shock as she looked around. There was nothing, no furniture, no pictures, no nothing. She ran into her living room…nothing. She ran into the kitchen…nothing. She wandered from room to room. What the hell had happened? She had heard of people being robbed, but she had been completely cleaned out. There was nothing left. If someone had burgled her house, why would they take her pictures, her little decorations? She raced back into the living room and looked around, spinning around, and she felt like the room was spinning too. She felt like she was going to faint and she let out a strangled cry.
She dropped to her knees instead.
"Looks like you got cleaned out."
Her eyes opened wide and she looked over her shoulder. She thought she was dreaming for a moment. He was a vision. She stood up, glad that she hadn't cried because the last thing she needed was for him to see her cry. She just stood there, they were at least ten feet apart, but she would take it. She would take it and she would cling to it for as long as she could. She wanted to speak, but the lump in her throat was large and getting larger.
"I wonder what the hell happened here," he said, looking around, his hands shoved in his pockets.
"Your site," she choked out.
"Oh, you read the Q&A?" he said, a little embarrassed as he chuckled to cover his nervousness. "Who knew that so many people would want to know about you and me, nosy bastards."
"Am I doing here?" he finished for her. "Yeah, well, those questions, they kind of kicked me in the pants you know. I guess I should personally thank those people for asking about you. I'll have to remember that."
"Kick in the pants?"
"Well, yeah, to see you," he said. "It's been a long time Steph."
"Almost a year," she answered softly.
"Yeah, too long," Chris told her and he shifted his feet on the barren hardwood floor. "Look Steph…about what happened…"
"You left," Stephanie said. "I get it, I told you to leave and you left, nothing more than that."
She wanted him more than anything, but she wasn't going to make herself look stupid. She still had her pride left, even if it was telling her to run into this mans arms at full speed and never leave them again. Chris nodded his head and looked down at the ground. She stared at his bowed head.
"So you wanted me to go?" Chris asked.
Chris's head snapped up. "Do you want me to go now?"
"No," she answered.
He nodded and looked around. "So while I was gone, I would write all these notes to you."
"You? It was you with the notes?" she asked.
"Yeah, it was. I never sent them, I was a little ashamed of them I guess, they were stupid or not funny or just plain silly, but it felt…it felt like I still had a connection to you somehow if I kept writing these notes."
"Oh," she said, smiling a little.
"I have one more for you," he told her, reaching into his pocket and taking out one last white note-card.
She walked over slowly, the sound of her shoes clicking loudly on the wood floor, the sound echoing through the empty rooms. She was so dazed by Chris's appearance that she had forgotten that her house was completely empty. She took the note-card from him and he immediately took a step backwards, as if he wanted to run away, but remained seated to the ground. She took the card and looked down.
Can I come home now?
"So can I?" he asked.
"Home? Your home is in Florida."
"Yeah, it is, but that's just a house."
"I don't get it."
He walked up to her and placed his hand on her cheek gently. "You're home to me."
"Huh?" she said, dumbfounded.
"Steph, do I have to spell it out for you? I need you, I'm not me without you. I haven't even been to my house in Florida since we…broke up," he choked out. "I couldn't even bear to go near the place, I've been living in hotels."
"Where's all my stuff?" she asked dazedly, Chris's words not sinking in.
"Well, I had it moved, it's now on its way to Florida, to my house."
"Well…the thing is Stephanie McMahon…I don't want to be away from you anymore. I don't want to live without you anymore, so you know what, I'm taking charge of my life. I want you to come back home."
"Really?" the words starting to sink in.
"So…can I come home now?" he asked.
She hugged him tightly, desperately holding onto him. When she pulled away, his lips seized her and she whispered against his lips, "Yes, come home…"
In the end, it turned out that they really didn't have to give up so much to be with each other. So what they wouldn't give? Well, it turned out…they gave everything.
And got so much in return.