Disclaimer: I don't own a thing. Not even the computer I'm writing this on. All you'd get out of me is a weird DVD collection
How could you
It was a bad idea. And she had no one to blame but herself because it was her bad idea. In the morning it seemed to be a pretty cool plan but now her headache was telling her otherwise. She couldn't remember the last time she was this hung over. Probably because the answer was never.
She had nowhere to be so she decided to stay home and to try to sleep through it all. She woke up only to go to bathroom or to get something to drink. The next day she still didn't feel that splendid but at least she didn't flinch at the sound of her own footsteps that were entirely too loud for her taste the previous day. She even managed to open her eyes to the daylight so she dared to set foot outside of her own four walls. And she needed to go to school, anyway.
The class was coming to an end since she still had to work on the curriculum because she had children of different age in her class now and she wasn't sure that the books would be any help. She was trying to come with something useful and practical for these strange times but she still needed time to adjust herself.
The children were packing their stuff and chatting when she heard Jake's name. As always all her senses concentrated on that particular brown-eyed topic and as she was listening her heart was sinking lower and lower. She didn't catch the whole story but words like bomb, bridge, wired, blow himself with it gave her a pretty good idea of what happened five days ago.
She held herself until the last child said his good bye and then she just sank to the floor and cried. She put her arms around her knees and buried her face in them, tears cascading from her eyes, her body trembling with sobs.
She had no idea how long she remained like that, thoughts running around in her head. Like – what the hell was he thinking pulling a stunt like that. She hasn't had a clue. But she was sure of what he definitely wasn't thinking of. Her. Why should he, anyway. It wasn't like they were something. They hardly knew each other. They met a month ago. OK, she kissed him, but she wasn't thinking about it either. But dreaming about it she did. Every night since it happened. And daydreaming at any given chance. But that was her and just because she had a crush on him didn't mean he had to feel the same. At that thought her sobs intensified again.
She finally seemed to run out of tears though she didn't really calm down. There was not much to do about her puffy eyes so she hoped no one would notice while she got home. And that was exactly what she did. She went straight home changed into more comfortable clothes and tried to distract herself with a crossword puzzle but she couldn't concentrate so she just curled up on the couch.
She woke up to darkness startled by her dream. A nightmare to be precise. The images still flashing in her mind she had no way of getting rid of them. So she just lay there with her eyes wide open trying to think of something else, anything else but the image of Jake's lifeless body was stubbornly coming back.
And that was how she spent the next few days. She went to school, then went straight home where she tried to distract herself before going to bed. During the night she was waken up several times by horrible scenes flashing in her mind with an integral theme going on. Jake was dead at the end of each one.
It was four days since she found out of the bridge incident and she needed some supplies. So after school she headed to the store.
She was on her way home when she spotted him. Her heart did a summersault and her breath hitched and she felt the anger and fear of last days rise in her again. She hoped to avoid him but as if on cue he turned his head her way and a smile spread across his face as he made his way to her.
She didn't slow down but he didn't seem to notice as he joined her.
"Hi, Heather." Oh, god, the things his voice did to her.
She only nodded her head in response.
"How is it going in the school?" he seemed to be pretty oblivious to her mood.
She didn't respond. She couldn't. She feared if she opened her mouth she would either scream or cry and she didn't know which one was worse. So she just continued to walk, eyes trained on the path straight in front of her.
"Children being good?" why had he to be so stubborn.
At the lack of her response his smile faded.
"Is something wrong with you?" there was concern in his voice at it was the last straw.
"Me?" she turned to him, her voice deeper filled with many emotions, none of them positive. "You are asking what is wrong with me? After what you did?" he seemed completely puzzled at the direction the conversation turned to after his simple greeting. "Threatening to blow yourself up with the bridge!! I mean, I know you were desperate and that you always need to play the hero to prove yourself. And I know these are dangerous times and that desperate times require desperate measures but I would have never thought you'll get suicidal. What the hell were you thinking?! Did you stop for a second to think what would it mean for the people you leave behind? How they would feel? Haven't the thought crossed your mind that there are people that would care when you die? Like your brother, Gail, the mayor, Stanley, …" and then she whispered, "… me."
Tears were now running freely down her cheeks and she suppressed a sob as she turned and practically run away from him.
He was standing there, speechless, stunned. She looked really hot when she was pissed.
And then her words finally registered. This sweet girl …, no scratch it. This beautiful woman that always managed to brighten up his day with as much as a smile and whose taste still lingered on his lips cared for him. Not for his past. Not for his faults. For him. As he recalled her expression during her outburst his heart broke a little at every tear he spotted on her cheeks.
There was something happening between them, something precious and beautiful and he would be a fool if he wasted anymore time before trying to find out what it was. He screwed up enough already. And since there wasn't really anything more urgent in his time table at the moment, he could very well start right now.