"So, Rory," Caitlyn said, taking the beer from the bartender's hand and setting it down in front of her. She crossed her long, lean, denim clad legs and swiveled in her chair to face the brunette next to her. "How are you liking the job so far?"
"It's great…everything I could have hoped for, really. I'm traveling, getting to see the country, meeting so many people--really important people. I mean, I met Obama once before, I interviewed him for the Yale Daily News, but there are so many other influential people that I've gotten to talk to, write about. And my stuff is getting out there—reaching people. It's been such an amazing opportunity."
Caitlyn took a sip of her beer and set it back down on the table. "Liar."
"Excuse me?" Rory asked defensively, eyes narrowed at Caitlyn's impudence.
"Oh come on. Everyone can see it Rory. You're miserable. You've been on the tour bus for over a month and you barely talk to anyone. The whole group of us are always going out for drinks and yet this is the first time you've left your hotel room after 8PM. We're not that scary, are we?"
Rory sighed, setting her own drink, coffee, next to Caitlyn's beer. "It's not you guys, I swear—you've all been great, and it's not the job either. It's just…complicated."
"You're homesick?" the slender blonde inquired. "I hear you talking to your mom a lot."
Rory smiled slightly. She missed her mother terribly—not as much as she missed him, though. "Mom and I are real close. She had me when she was 16, raised me on her own. It was us against the world for a long time."
"That must be nice…not the teen pregnancy stuff, but the relationship with your mom."
Rory nodded enthusiastically. "It is. She's great."
Caitlyn chugged the last of her drink and set it back on the bar, motioning to the bartender for a re-fill. "What do you want, Rory?" she asked as the man behind the bar placed a new drink in front of her.
"Oh, nothing for me."
"Come on, just one drink. You've got to lighten up. Being away from home is hard, yeah, but you can't let it get to you like this."
"Fine," Rory shrugged, shifting in her seat to face the man taking her order. She was about to order a vodka martini but before she knew it, an entirely different order was slipping from her lips. "Macallan, neat."
Caitlyn nodded her head in approval, her heavily made up eyes wide with surprise. "Didn't take you for a scotch kind of girl. Quality scotch at that."
Rory rested her forearms on the edge of the bar, dropping her head with a heaving sigh. "I'm not."
"Oh?" Cait's wide eyes narrowed questioningly.
"He was," Rory admitted. She had no idea why she opening up now, in this place, to this girl, but she just couldn't hold back anymore.
Caitlyn rolled her hazel eyes in a perfect circle. "No shit Sherlock."
Rory sent her a glare. "Logan," she informed her new friend. "His name was Logan. We were together for almost three years. We lived together for a while, until he moved to London for business. It was supposed to be a year, but he got relocated to New York a few months in. He worked for his Dad, and it made him miserable, so eventually he left."
"And you didn't like that he quit his job?" Caitlyn ventured, leaning in closer, not wanting to miss any of the story.
"No, it wasn't like that. I was so proud of him for sticking up to his dad. It's just…"
"He got this amazing new job—in San Francisco."
"And you didn't want to go through the whole long distance thing again?"
"I did. I was willing to do what ever it took. I knew it would be hard, but it was worth it," she insisted adamantly. "He was worth it," she added softer, practically inaudible over the pulsating beats coming from the juke box.
"So he broke up with you over a job?" Caitlyn asked incredulously. Her outrage clearly showing, as she grabbed her beer off the table angrily, spilling it all over her lap in the process. Luckily by that point, she'd had enough of the libations, not to care about a little spill. "Men can be such assholes. You give them three year of your life and then boom they just…"
"Propose," Rory interrupted.
Caitlyn's jaw dropped as she set the, now half empty, glass down on the bar. "Huh?"
"He proposed, and I said no. I loved him, I did, I swear, but I just wasn't ready for that step. I thought we could still be together, but…"
"'No' is a pretty hard thing to get over."
"I guess, but what did he want me to do? Give up everything and move across the country with him? I couldn't follow his path before I knew where my own was leading. You really think I'd be here now if I had that ring on my finger?"
"Is it worth it?" Caitlyn asked. "Is having this job better than having him?"
"I….I don't know," she answered.
"Well," the blonde stated, straightening up, and slamming her palm on the bar. "You want to know what I suggest?"
"What?" Rory asked hopefully, wishing someone in her life would have the balls to tell her what to do. She felt so lost.
"Copious amounts of alcoholic beverage."
It wasn't the answer Rory was hoping for, but she took it nonetheless. She giggled, slightly, grabbing her glass of scotch, banging it against the edge of Caitlyn's beer, and downing it in one gulp. Why the hell not; nothing else had worked so far.
Rory sidled off of the dance floor and up to the bar for another drink. She'd lost count of how many this was, and she didn't really care. It felt good to finally be smiling, even if she knew it was mostly alcohol induced.
"What can I get for you?" the bartender asked. She was about to speak up when someone else interrupted, placing their own order instead.
"I'll have a Sam Adams. And a bloody Mary for the Mary."
Rory felt her whole body tense up as she felt a hand press itself against the small of her back. She'd recognize that 'Mary' anywhere.
"Tristan," she greeted, turning to face the speaker. He'd filled out a bit, probably from his years in military school doing hundreds of one-armed push ups. He smirked at her. She silently contemplated the idea that they taught all the cocky, blond society boys that particular facial expression in their fancy bording schools. It was amazing how much he looked like Logan. Sure, he was taller, and had blue eyes, but in her drunken state, that was pretty easy to overlook. "Fancy meeting you here."
"I'm visiting an old military school friend," he admitted. "What are you doing way down here in Charlotte?"
"Business," she replied tersely.
"Right. I've read some of your articles on-line. You've turned into quite the reporter if I do say so myself."
"Thanks," she relented.
"So, you think you can spare a dance for an old friend?" he asked, paying the bartender for their drinks and leading Rory back towards the dance floor.
"Friend?" she asked with a chuckle, her eyebrows raised pointedly.
"Well, what ever you would call us."
"Enemies?" she supplied.
Tristan threw his free hand over his heart. "You wound me, Mare."
She giggled drunkenly and rolled her eyes. Grabbing his hand at the wrist and dragging him to the dance floor.
She tried to stifle her giggles as she pushed the door to her hotel room open and pulled him in behind her.
As soon as he'd entered the room, he turned, pressing her against the wall, and shutting the door with his foot. His lips immediately descended on hers and he pushed his tongue into her mouth as his hands ran up her hips and disappeared under the hem of her shirt.
He'd dreamed of this—the way her lips would move against his, how her skin would feel under his touch. She was the girl that got away—the one girl he'd never thought he'd get to have, and here she was, alone with him in a hotel room, feeling him up. A small part of him was telling him to stop, that something about this wasn't right, but years of pent up fantasies were being fulfilled here and he just wasn't strong enough to put and end to it—unless… "Are you sure about this, Mare? Do you want me to go?"
She tensed up momentarily at his words, but pushed them to the back of her mind and quickly pulled him in for another bruising kiss.
"Is that a 'no?' he inquired.
"No," she hissed, this time pushing him away from her and back against the wall, so that she'd be the one in control. Logan always loved it when she took control. Apparently Tristan did too. He moaned appreciatively into her mouth as she ground her hips into his.
"God Mary, the things you do to me."
"Shh," she ordered. She didn't want him to talk; it wasn't his voice she wanted to hear. She enforced her plea by occupying his mouth with hers yet again. Her hands fell from around his neck and traveled down his chest. She pulled his polo shirt up with one hand as the other slid underneath, taking in the feel of his hot, sweaty flesh. She missed the feel of his skin on hers as they made love, and if she tried hard enough, she could imagine it was him she was feeling right then. She pushed his shirt over his head and let it drop to the floor.
Tristan followed cue, grabbing her tank top by the hem and yanking it over her head. He pulled back for a moment taking in the sight before him. He still wasn't convinced this was real, but it sure as hell felt real.
He continued to watch on in awe as she reached behind her and unclasped her bra, letting it slip off her shoulders. He swallowed the lump forming in his throat as the milky white skin and taught pink nipples appeared before his eyes.
He leaned forward for another kiss, but she reached her tiny palm outward, laying it flat on his chest and pushing him back against the wall with more force than he was expecting. Her hand traveled down his chest and over his kahkis, cupping his erection in her hand. She looked up and smiled at him, reaching for the buckle of his belt and undoing it in one swift motion. She unbuttoned the top of his fly and pulled the zipper down, pushing both his Dockers and his boxer briefs to the floor at his ankles. She tried not to think too much about the fact that Logan was purely a boxers kind of guy as she grabbed him in her hand, stroking him with a firm grip.
"Fuck, Mary," he groaned. She mentally substituted 'Ace,' in her head. She got down on her knees, preparing to take him in her mouth.
Tristan sucked in a breath. Of all the ways he never thought he'd get to see his Mary—shirtless and on her knees, with her mouth wrapped around his dick—was way up at the top of the list.
"You don't have to…" he started.
"I want to," she insisted, gently trailing her tongue along the base of his shaft, flicking the frenulum along the way and eliciting another expletive from him. She wanted to do this—she wanted to please him. If she could just make him happy, maybe he would come back to her. She took him wholly into her mouth, sucking on his throbbing dick as he thrust into her ministrations.
"Mary," he groaned after a few minutes. He was starting to lose control and as much as he was loving this, it wasn't how he wanted this to end. He pushed her off of him and helped her stand up. His hands wrapped around her waist and moved down to cover her ass. He squeezed it roughly as he pushed her hips into his, lifting her slim frame easily, until she wrapped her legs around his waist. He carried her to the bed setting her down. He reached for the zipper of her jeans, unzipping them, and sliding them over her shapely hips.
He quickly went back to his own jeans, still in a pile on the floor by the door, and swiftly extricated a condom from his wallet in the pocket. He made his way back to the bed and positioned himself over her, resting his weight on his forearms on either side of her. He leaned in pressing his lips firmly against hers. Shifting his weight, he gruffly tore the condom open with his teeth and rolled it on. He reached down to feel her wet folds, and knew she was ready to take him in. He slid into her.
"Oh god," she groaned. He couldn't help but smirk at the 'moniker,' as he thrust into her. He was slow at first, taking the time to enjoy the feel of her—wet and tight, and warm—around him. Her breathing started to become more hitched as she thrust up to meet him, and he could tell she was becoming impatient. He made a few more slow, methodical thrusts, just to torture her, before finally giving in and picking up the pace.
She needed him. She needed him hard and fast, creating all the amazing sensations she had missed since he'd left. She needed him to need her. She listened to him, grunting unintelligible phrases, words, or possibly just random sounds as he pounded away inside her. She couldn't take it anymore and she felt herself come undone. She bit her tongue, hard, as her orgasm hit—it was the only thing she could think to do to keep from screaming out the name that was about to escape from her lips. The name of the man she really wanted to be with.
Tristan rolled off of her, laying flat on his back, his head turned to the side to look at her. Her chest was still heaving from exertion and her eyes were squeezed shut. She finally opened them, looking straight into his eyes—his blue eyes—and she began to cry.
"Shit!" he mumbled. "Mare? Rory, are you ok? Did I do something wrong?" Fuck he cursed to himself. Why did this always happen with her? This was bad. Very, very bad. But he had asked her if she was sure; if she wanted him to leave. She had wanted this too, hadn't she?
She shook her head. "I'm sorry," she chocked out.
"You know, I've got to admit that I've fantasized about this a lot in the seven years since I first met you, and never once has it ended like this. OK, so once or twice there were a few tear in the beginning, because, ya know, you were a Mary and all, but I was always very gentle and…" he rambled.
She laughed slightly, through the tears. "Oh, good. You laughed. I wasn't sure if that was too inappropriate, umm…" he continued, not really sure what to do.
"I'm sorry," she whispered again. "I just…I miss him so much and you…I shouldn't have. I'm so sorry Tristan." The tears increased, until sobs wracked her entire body.
"Hey, it's OK," he assured her. Another guy. It was another guy that had brought his precious Mary to tears. He felt his heart break a little; partly for her, partly for himself. He should have known things would work out this way—well maybe not this way exactly, but he should have known it would turn out bad. He brushed a strand of hair off her sweat and tear soaked face. "You don't have to apologize to me. I was a willing participant, Mare."
She drew her knees up to her chest, hugging them tightly as she continued to cry. Tristan slipped off the bed, walking over to the pile of his clothes and slipping his boxer briefs back on. He went to the closet and grabbed and extra blanket out, and took it back to the bed, gently laying it over her diminutive from. He paused looking around the room for a moment before heading off to the bathroom to fill a glass with water. He went back, sitting on the edge of the bed next to her, and setting the glass on the night stand.
"Mare. Mary, listen to me," he pleaded. "It's going to be OK. There are a million guys out there who would give their left nut to be with you. This one guy; this one idiot, is nothing."
She shook her head, almost violently. "He's everything. He was everything and I let him walk away. I ruined it. I ruined everything. I could have had it all. I could have shared it all with him but I said 'no'. I took him for granted, I…I should have said yes. I should have told him that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with him. Oh god, what have I done?"
He had nothing to say to this—no response that could possibly be even close to adequate. So he just lay down next to her, wrapping his arm around her and hugging her body tightly to his until the sobs died down into the gentle rise and fall of her chest as she drifted off to sleep.