GuiltyUntil Proven Innocent
one-shot by vintagelove
I remembered that look on your face. It was a look of guilt when I told you I had seen you with her.
Do you remember?
I sure as hell do. Did two years of dating mean anything to you? I loved you and I thought you loved me too, but I guess I was wrong.
I was heartbroken when I saw you with her. I thought I was going to die because I was being stabbed repeatedly when I thought about you.
You called, oh yes you called me a lot. I ignored them of course, but it was always nice to hear your voice once in a while. But so many questions went through my head every time I heard your pleading voice to pick up the phone.
What did I do wrong?
Why wasn't I good enough for you?
I cried a lot. You didn't see it of course and I hoped that you felt so guilty it was unbearable. I hoped you could feel as much pain as me.
Love makes people weak. I am weak.
The calls stopped eventually but then you even had the nerve to come over to my apartment even after I moved my things out of yours. You sat outside in the hallway for hours, I heard you. Secretly, I would lean against the front door just to hear you say apologies that both of us knew wouldn't matter. But I cried softly when I heard you say that you still loved me and nothing would change that.
If you loved me, you wouldn't have cheated on me with some whore. You just said she was a friend from college, visiting. Oh boy, was I wrong.
I'd see you around the city every once in a while. I knew that you saw me as well because you would try to come over by me but I walked away. I wanted nothing to do with you anymore. I wouldn't be trapped again.
But I never stopped loving you and I hated myself for that.
It was a busy day in the city. With every step I took, I either rammed into someone by accident or some pervert would take the chance to grope my ass. I was frustrated and I needed some coffee.
I entered a café that my friend worked at and sighed tiredly. Perching my sunglasses on top of my head, I glanced around and spotted a free table by the clear window. I got in line and ordered a hot cup of coffee.
He watched her come in and he felt that same pain he felt once before. She looked as beautiful as ever and every male head turned toward her. I felt protective but then I reminded myself she wasn't mine anymore.
I sighed and looked down into my coffee.
She didn't even let me explain what had happened six months ago. Personally, if I was her, I wouldn't want to listen to myself either. I was guilty that she saw me with Caitlin because I had told her I was going somewhere else, but it wasn't what she thought it was.
My eyes went back to her figure and took her in. She was in a white skirt that flowed by her mid calf, a denim blazer, a tight white shirt, and high heels. She looked like an angel.
I continued to gaze at her sadly.
I sat down in the empty table and got out a book that I had been reading the night before from my small purse. I noticed in the background 'Walk Away', by Kelly Clarkson was playing softly.
I took a sip of my coffee and set it down, keeping my hand wrapped around it. I tapped my foot unconsciously to the music and immediately got pulled inside my book.
A few minutes later, I heard a voice that was all too familiar, "Is this seat taken?" My eyes went to the empty seat in front me and then to Brian, my cheating ex. He was as gorgeous as he always had been with raven black hair and dark green eyes. His muscular but lean frame was standing before me, staring down at me. I felt uncomfortable and my breath caught in my throat.
Some anger rose then.
"Actually it is," I said as coldly as possible. Brian just blinked slowly in response and sat down across from me.
My eyes narrowed and I muttered a few curses under my breath, wanting nothing more than to just hit him. "Prick," I mumbled.
I tried to concentrate on my book once again but I failed. I kept rereading every line trying to make sense of it.
"You know, you've been on the same page for a while now," he drawled.
I cursed him. He had always been observant.
Brian was the shy type of guy, that's why it shocked me so much he would cheat on me. He was always loving and caring, the perfect guy you would want to bring home so he could meet your parents.
I glared at his coffee cup, not daring to meet his eyes. The song changed to 'We Belong Together', by Mariah Carey. Oh my God. I rolled my eyes and returned to my book.
I finally gave up trying to make sense of it so I slammed it shut and set the book on the table. Brian watched me fixedly and I met his gaze. "Do you need something, Brian? Or is it okay with you if I leave?" I sounded annoyed but I really wasn't.
He looked at me sadly and he licked his dry lips. My eyes followed the path his tongue made, but I caught myself and looked away from him. "You don't understand, Kate. You never gave me a chance to explain what happened. Why didn't you?"
I brushed my dark hair over my shoulder because it fell into my face, "What is there to say, Brian? Why can't you just admit it? Some guys would be boasting that they got a piece of ass with someone like Caitlin even if they did cheat."
I saw him flinch, "I didn't cheat on you, Kate. It was a simple kiss."
I looked at him sadly, "It doesn't matter if it was one simple kiss, Brian. It was the fact that you even took part in it."
I made a move to get up but a strong hand shot out and caught my hand. "No, sit down. I'm not letting you get away from me again."
I glared at him, "That isn't your choice." I struggled in his grip but he just looked at me tired.
"Stop playing these games, Kate. Let me just talk to you and tell you what happened. If you don't believe me, fine. I won't ever bother you again."
I stared at him a while longer. I wanted to know what happened so I sat down before him. "Talk then, Brian. You don't have long."
He sighed and leaned forward on his elbows, his coffee forgotten along with mine. "Caitlin was an old friend from college, okay? Nothing more," I snorted and he shot me a look but continued, "I always knew she liked me, though, ever since junior year. She called me one day and said she was coming to town to visit her folks and that she wanted to catch up with me. I thought maybe she got over her thing for me, you know. I thought she did when I met her for lunch. I told you about that. We talked and she didn't seem interested anymore. Then she asked me if I had a girlfriend and I told her about you. She asked about you and I told her everything. I told her I loved you and she seemed to understand that, but she started flirting with me and I left." He took in a deep breath and diverted his gaze from me. A familiar blush crept up to his cheeks and that made me wonder, "I was…" He cleared his throat, "I was going to propose to you, you know."
I sat their, gaping at him, "W-what?"
He nodded and leaned back in his chair, "Oh yeah, I love you so much. I was going to propose."
I caught that he didn't say the 'I love you' part in past tense. Did he still love me?
I was rubbing my temples and his hands were folded on the table. "I asked Caitlin to come with me and pick out an engagement ring." He smiled sadly at me, "It didn't exactly go as planned, I guess."
The café was too quiet; all I could hear was him. Is this really happening?
I felt lightheaded as he continued, "We were walking outside the store and she said her parents were there to pick her up because she was leaving to go back to her house tomorrow. The next thing I knew, she kissed me. That's probably what you saw but I pushed her away. Did you see that, Kate?"
I shook my head dumbly. "No, I didn't," I said softly. I glanced out of the clear window and onto the street, full of busy people walking. My mind was blank, though. I couldn't think.
"By the time I got back to our apartment, all your stuff was gone so I called up your friend and asked where you were. I finally got to you and asked you why you left and you told me you saw her with me. I was guilty because I told you I was going to work to finish up some paperwork. Everything else is history."
No one said anything.
After a few moments, he said softly, "I love you, Kate. I never stopped loving you and I miss you so much."
He got out of his chair as his words finally sunk in. He was leaving toward the door.
No, no, no, no.
He loved me still.
God, I am an idiot. It was too much to comprehend at once so I acted on instinct.
I stood up but by that time, he was already out the door. I looked around nervously, and grabbed my purse, walking fast toward the exit.
The streets were just as busy as they were earlier but I still spotted the back of Brian's head. I weaved my way through the people hastily and finally caught up with him. I grabbed his arm and he looked around at me surprised.
I grabbed the nape of his neck and pulled him down, meeting the familiar taste of his lips. He responded instantly and I smelled his cologne. He tasted so good, just like he always had.
We pulled apart, leaning our foreheads against each other's while I said, "I'm sorry."
He kissed my forehead and winked flirtatiously, "It's okay, baby. Make-up sex with you is always mind-blowing."
I mock gasped and slapped his arm playfully while he pulled me in for another kiss.
How foolish I had been.
"I love you, too," I said to him. He didn't speak for a while, but then:
"This means you're moving back in, right?"