I took off the smokey blue dress in the dark and slowly put on my clothes from the day before, then curled up on the couch and pulled the blanket up to my neck. I held the bright light of my phone in front of my face, then called Chris’s number, put it to my ear and waited breathlessly for him to answer.
“Are you OK?” he said into the phone.
“Then why are you calling me at 2:30am?”
“I just wanted to hear your voice,” I whispered.
He was quiet for a minute. Then he said, “why?”
“Because I love you and I wanted to make sure you knew that.”
“I love you too, Odette. Are you enjoying your….break?”
“It’s not as fun as I had hoped. I wish you and Zoe were here with me.”
“I thought the point was to get away.”
I looked around the stranger’s dark living room. “You don’t miss your water” I whispered,
“Till your well runs dry,” he finished for me.
“I’m going to see Kat tomorrow morning.”
“Where are you tonight? When I tracked your phone it looked like you were at her house.”
“Its a long story, you are going to laugh at me when I tell you.”
“You’re not at a guy’s house?”
“Of course not” I whispered harshly, annoyed. “Why would you say something like that?”
“I really hope not.” He said.
I was quiet. He still didn’t trust me. I supposed I needed to earn that back…well, at some point anyway.
“Goodnight my love” I said. “Don’t be mad at me. I’ll be home soon, in a couple of days for the closing.”
“Goodnight, Odette. Just come back to me safe.” He hung up.
When I hung my arm back so that my phone dropped gently onto my purse on the floor, the tears ran down the side of my face into my ears and my hair, soaking this girls pillow. Chris was my everything. But Jake was right about how we ‘got’ each other, when I wasn’t torturing him I suppose. But isn’t that what everyone wants…to be understood in that deep, magical way? I thought about his bloody fist and wished I had at least brought him out a bandaid. Would he ever think favorably of me again? Probably not. I looked at my phone again. He was only about ten minutes away from me by now. A quick phone call could bring him right back. “Have some self control” I whispered at myself. I closed my eyes, furious with myself for being so weak and drifted off to sleep with images of Jake and me under white sheets, laughing because we were in my room at the beach with the breeze coming through the windows…the only two people in the universe, no commitments, no cleaning the house, no grief…just us and a little bit of perfection, like a pearl tossing around at the bottom of the ocean.