Disclaimer: I don't own anything.
A/N: This is my first fic. This idea has been rolling around forever... it's not beta'ed or anything so apologies for mistakes. Sorry if this sucks but I had to write it.I'll probably continue if I didn't butcher this. Here it goes:
She sighs lightly awaiting your response. Your hands are firmly cradling your ceramic coffee cup as you search the jumbled mess you call a brain. So many times you have wanted her to say this and now that she has you aren't sure what to say. You aren't sure what you can say. She's never been one to just say something so...raw. Her intentions are usually hidden behind her words, or her eyes.
The tapping rain on the tall windows beside you somewhat lull you out of your thoughts and you find yourself staring into your black coffee, because that's easier than thinking about this mess. And right now you don't even know where to begin.
She breathes in as if she is about to say something more, but when your eyes quickly flit to hers, her shoulders slump back down and she continues to stare at you intently. You look back down at the dark wooden table of the coffee shop you are in, in an attempt to regain the inkling of a thought process you had a minute ago, but the low bustle coming from the coffee shop around you now seems adequately louder and you know you need to say something because the silence is killing her.
"Calleigh, I..." Damn it...Okay. You close your eyes slowly and take a deep breath. Your drawn out attempt to clear your mind must have set off an alarm in her because when re open your eyes. She is slightly leaned over the table more towards you, eyes wide, searching you for more words. You stare at her pupils, but don't actually look, because you're afraid of what you'll see.
Her hands leave her cup, and she places them on the table as if to brace herself for your answer. But you can't give her it. Not yet.
You contemplate putting a hand on hers but you don't want to give her the false hope she gave you countless times in the past, so you compromise by lightly placing your left had a few inches away from her own.
"You know how much I care for you" you state. You think you see a nod, but maybe you didn't. You take her silence as an invitation to continue.
"But, I don't know if I can do this...Not now. Not after..."you trail off, knowing that she knows exactly what you are talking about, and you saying it out loud will only hurt her. And you don't want to hurt her anymore than the other men in her life. You aren't sure what to do about what she revealed to you, because you still care for her...maybe even love her. Maybe. So why is this decision so hard!?
After holding her defensive position through your words, she takes a slow breath and removes her hands from the table, slumps her shoulders and looks into her full cup of tea nodding. After a minute she raises her head and looks you in the eyes. She looks at you so deeply and compassionately as if searching for something... just like you used to look at her. You have to look away for a moment to see if the look on her face is real and not just your mind playing tricks on you.
"Eric..." she calls, wanting you to look at her.
When you look back she still wears the same face and it makes you sad and angry at the same time. The emotion painted on her face stabs at your heart with guilt. Your pent up emotions are threatening to leak out any minute now and you bite your lower lip hard to control them. After a moment, you speak;
"This isn't me pushing you away... I'm not saying anything yet Cal-leigh". You almost call her by her nickname you used to be so fond of using, but the situation makes you finish her full name, and you're not sure who it would be more painful for, hearing 'Cal' escape your lips.
"But, I have to go. I just ... want some time to think about this" you explain.
She nods slowly and reaches into her purse, but you beat her to it and lay out some bills. Standing up, you give her a sympathetic look, but quickly wipe it off your face and thank God silently that she's still digging through her purse and wasn't able to see.
The grumble your chair legs make as you push it backwards with your calves bring her out of her search and she looks up at you.
"Don't...", you stop yourself from telling her to not dwell on this and be strong because you know she will be strong. She always is. And you know that no matter what you say she won't stop thinking about you even though she won't show it. Not to anyone else at least.
She looks up at you questioning your outburst, but after a moment her features soften and she moves her cup forward and places her black purse on the table in front of her, looking at your chest, and traveling upwards to hesitantly meet your eyes again.
Her actions surprise you and your brows furrow slightly as you shoot her a light worried look. She brushes you off and looks over her shoulder and stands up. Pulling the hem of her top down, her hands meet and fidget lightly as she looks back up at you.
And it suddenly hits you just how nervous and hurt she is. You would have noticed right away when you met her here, but you were trying too hard not to read her. Seeing her silently suffer would've made you run right to her and take her into your arms. But you aren't sure if you can do that now. Well, you know you can... you just aren't sure whether you want to. And it scares you that all that has happened can make you think this way. Especially when it comes to her.
"You don't have to pay Eric, I asked you to come, I'll pay" she says quietly.
"No, I don't mind. You can get the next one" you say. This is your way of re assuring her that this isn't it. That you'll talk about this again once you are able to...think?
She nods thankfully and offers you a small smile. You feel your knees conspicuously weaken and you curse the effect she still has on you. You grab your coat and almost whisper a "Goodbye" and shoot her a half smile of regret.
You turn your back and stop a few feet from the door waiting for her to say something after you.
"I'll see you ...or , uh talk to you later" she says nervously. It worries you to hear her like this and you're glad your back was turned when she spoke. You aren't sure your heart can take another sight of her looking broken.
"Yeah" you say still facing the door. You push it open and you hear a little bell ring over head. As you step out onto the street you still hold your jacket even though it's still raining, and noticeably more than when you first arrived. You walk about a minute to your car and stand outside the driver door looking upwards hoping the rain will cleanse your mind and help you think about your situation somewhat sensibly. But your feelings for Calleigh never were sensible and all the rain does is stir your thoughts more so that only her words floats on top of all your other deliberations.
"Eric I'm sorry about before, but I realise now how much I need to be with you..."
Over and over.
A/N: I'd like to hear your thoughts. Criticism is welcome. Thanks for reading.