Two Straws 13: Stuck In The Moment

"Come in," I called out as I heard someone knock on the door. I was on the floor, unpacking my things from the ginormous suitcases. I heard the bed creak as someone plopped on top of the fluffy mattress. Looking up, I couldn’t help but smile weakly at Liam.

"Hey, everything okay?" he asked, slightly concerned.

"Mhmm," I said softly, looking down. I took one of the shirts from the inside of the suitcase, tracing the pattern with my fingers.

"Are you sure?"

"Yeah. It’s just…long day," I sighed. I didn’t know what to do. I felt so torn between my brother and my best friend. I mean, my brother was dating my best friend’s ex girlfriend. The odds of this actually happening was one in a million. And with my luck, it just had to happen. I knew the right thing was to tell Liam, but something at the pit of my stomach warned me that I wouldn’t like his reaction. Everything would go wrong. Again.

"Do you want to talk about it?" he asked, coming down the bed and sitting next to me on the floor. He had his knees up, his arms resting casually on top. I turned to Liam, biting my lip in worry. He smiled at me warmly, encouraging me to talk.

"Well, I do want to talk," I started, playing with the necklace around my neck.

"About what happened tonight?"

"Sort of."

"Is this about what your dad said to you at their house? Or is this about you getting kicked out?"

"Actually, it doesn’t have to do with anything about my parents."

"It doesn’t?"

"No."

"Oh, well then. What do you want to talk about?"

"You."

"Me?"
"Yeah."

"What about me?"

I looked at Liam, staring into his milk chocolate brown eyes. I exhaled sharply, shutting my eyes closed for a moment. I envisioned multiple scenarios, seeing different reactions from Liam. I wasn’t sure how he was going to take the news. I knew it was going to hurt him in some way. I know he said he had feelings for me, but something at the back of my mind nagged me that he still had a little feelings for her. And that scared me. But this was the moment. I knew I had to tell him. I can’t lie to him. I just can’t.

"It’s about Danielle," I said softly. Liam’s eyes widened and he blinked quickly, composing himself. He pursed his lips and stared straight ahead of me, not exactly meeting my gaze. 

"What about her?" he asked blankly. His expression was unreadable. I knew he was trying to forget all the memories he had of her and he was resisting the images of them together that kept playing in his head. 

"It’s just…I don’t know how to say it, but uhm..well.."

"Megan, just say it."

"Danielle is dating Christopher." 

The atmosphere in the air tensed up as Liam processed the news. No one said anything. No one moved. All you could hear was our soft breathing. Liam looked frozen, unsure what to do or say. I suddenly regretted telling him. This is exactly why I didn’t want to tell him. I knew it. Of course, he was going to react badly to this. It was inevitable. I don’t know why I thought he would treat it as if it was no big deal. It obviously was a big deal to Liam. I just thought that he cared about me more, than who his ex girlfriend was dating. Guess not.

Suddenly I felt his strong arms wrap around my shoulders, pulling me close to him. I looked up at him, startled and confused. He simply offered me a small smiled and sighed softly.

"You were upset over the fact that your brother is dating my ex girlfriend?" Liam asked.

I nodded my head, unsure what was going on exactly.

"Well, I’m not. Danielle and I are over. Remember? She has the right to move on. And I’m glad she found someone, especially someone like Christopher. He’s a good guy, he’s got to be. After all, he’s related to an incredible person."

"Yeah, my dad is a really good guy," I said sarcastically.

"I wasn’t talking about your dad. I was talking about you. You’re the one who’s incredible. And I’m lucky to have you in my life. Yeah, it might be a little awkward to see Danielle when we hang out with your brother. But I’m willing to put our differences and past history behind us, because I want to be with you."

"Liam, it’s okay. If you still have feelings for her, and it hurts too see her. I c-"

Liam put a finger over my mouth, silencing me. 

"Megan, listen to me. I’m over her. I’M FINALLY OVER HER. I’m over her because I have you. Danielle and I had some good memories together, but that’s all we will have ever. You and I have a future together, I know it."

"Do you really mean that?" 

"I really do."

I leaned my head on Liam’s shoulder and I felt him press his lips on my temple in a gentle kiss. We sat in this position for what felt like a long time. We didn’t talk, we didn’t move. We just sat there, both of us thinking.

Liam finally cleared his throat, breaking the silence in the room. He pulled away from me and stood up, stretching his arms over his head. I looked up at him in question.

"I think I’m going to shower," Liam said running a hand through his hair.

"Okay," I said, "I’m just going to stay here and finish unpacking."

"You’ll be ok?"

"Yeah, I’ll be fine."

"Well if you need anything, just come by my room, ok?"
I nodded my head.

"Good night, Megs," he said softly, closing the door of my room, leaving me all alone.

(Liam’s POV)

I dragged my feet along the hallway carpet, running a hand through my hair in frustration. Warm, hot tears were threatening to spill out of the corner of my eyes as I kicked open the door to my room. The door slammed shut behind me as I trudged my way into my bathroom. I stripped of my shirt, using my feet to shove them aside. My bare feet made contact with the cool tiles of the bathroom, making all my emotions run wild. I placed both of my hands on top of the sink counter, my fingers clutching the edge of the marble corners. The mirror reflected someone who looked like me. His face was conflicted, his eyes dark with depression. His lips were pressed in a tight line as the veins on his strong arms were prominent against his tan skin. I knew it was me in the reflection, but refused to believe it. 

I was pissed off. And I felt all this hate boil inside me. I hated myself for lying to Megan, pretending that everything was going to be okay. I hated Megan for being so perfect and likable. I hated Christopher for dating my ex girlfriend. AND I HATE DANIELLE FOR RUINING EVERYTHING FOR ME. I hated the way she made me feel and confused me with my feelings for Megan. I hated the way she made me feel upset over her dating Christopher. I hated the way Danielle made me feel slightly jealous even though we weren’t together. I hate this. I hate everything. And more than anything in the world, I hated myself because somehow, some way I knew I was going to hurt Megan in the process.

I felt the icy cold water hit my bare back as I stepped into the shower. My  tense muscles relaxed slowly once I began to cool down. I breathed in and out slowly, shutting my eyes and mentally isolating myself from the outside world. I wanted to run away from this problem. I wanted to metaphorically throw a blanket over it and leave it alone, in hope that I’ll never have to face it again. But I knew that was unrealistic. And as much as I wanted to hide the problem, I understood it was unavoidable. Because as long as I wanted to be in Megan’s life, I knew I had to face the new couple at one point. No matter how much it hurt.

God. I love Megan so much and I want to be with her. Words can’t even explain how much I want her. But hearing this. Hearing that my ex girlfriend is dating her brother. It was all too much. This anger clouded inside my head and a hint of jealousy took over my body. I wanted to scream and cry when I heard the news. But I restrained myself from doing so, because I saw the way Megan looked. I saw the way she bit her lip in worry, her eyes filled with concern. I saw the way she fiddled with random objects to hide the fear in her face. And I knew why she was scared. She was scared of me. Megan feared that I would relapse into this heartbroken mess and forget all the promises I made to her about wanting to be with her. And I felt bad. Because if it wasn’t for Megan’s blunt body language, I probably would have turned insane. 

And that’s what worried me. If I was in love with Megan, why am I so jealous about Danielle’s relationship? I was supposed to be over Danielle, moving on to better things. But I felt this rage hit me when I found about her new official relationship. It was all confusing and making me hurt all over. So I dealt with the hurt the only way I knew how. I walked over to Megan’s room, opening her door quietly and tiptoeing inside. Her body lay on top of her bed, a small lump covered by a large purple comforter. Megan’s brown hair fanned around her face, her right cheek resting comfortably on her pillow. Her hands clutched the blanket closer to her chest as sighed softly to herself. I lifted up the covers gently, before sliding into a comfortable position next to her. She stirred softly once she felt my body against hers. My chest was pressed against her back, my arm wrapped protectively around her waist. I lightly brushed away a piece of stray hair off her face, staring at her for a short moment.

"Stop staring at me," Megan mumbled drowsily.

I chuckled next to her, shaking the bed slightly. She turned to face me, both her eyes still closed as she cuddled into my chest. 

"Are you sleeping here tonight?" she asked softly.

"Mhmm," I murmured into her hair as I rested my chin on top of her neck.

"Why?"

"Because I want to be with you."

"I was hoping you’d say that."

"What do you mean?"

"I thought you’d say something like ‘I want to be here, because I’m hurting and you always seem to do the ring thing.’ And well, it kinda makes me glad that you’re actually here to be with me."

I felt myself freeze as I heard Megan’s response. She was still half asleep, cuddling into my body. Yet, she managed to read my like an open book.

"Megan, you know I’ll always try to make you happy," I said, my voice slightly shaky. I took a shallow breath, hoping to ease myself.

"You’ll make me happy by just being your happy self," she said softly. 

It seemed like such a strange thing to be happy about. She wanted me to be happy, thinking it was the most simple thing in the world to ask her. But Megan just didn’t know how I felt right now to understand how impossible it was for me to appeal to her request….