"I'm sorry, but I don't think we were meant to be."
David turned away and walked on carefully measured steps. Outside he put on a well-practiced face that showed hesitation over his decision. But inside he was grinning that their joke of a relationship was finally over.
Damn. He wouldn't even call it a relationship.
He was counting mentally, already predicting what would happen next…
3, 2, 1…-
Right on cue.
He turned back hesitantly towards the mascara-smeared, tear-streaked face of his fourth ex-girlfriend… or was it the fifth- of the past five months that is- he can't remember anymore.
"Stella, it's not you… it's me."
He pulled on an anguished expression that defied the giddy excitement that was his real emotion. It was time for fresh meat and although their time together was fun… He wanted something more.
He wanted someone else. Period.
Although the line used has often been rusted over for its abuse of power- it actually never failed to work.
And admitting the truth that their relationship was just plain mediocre was like asking for a death sentence, anyway, so why tell the truth? It's good that he's been an expert at detecting women and what type they are. For example, Stella is the newbie type. Newbies are childlike often falling in love right away and that there is their mistake.
David Tyler isn't a person to tolerate feelings and caring. Love was just a word often spoken when there is nothing else to talk about.
Stella, so naïve! It really is me. I just have an eye out for that new girl in your squad, that's all... He thought smugly- which was really part of the whole truth.
"N-No, David you-you're just saying that but, but it's not true. It's me! I swear, I'll make this relationship work…"
Why doesn't she just get it? She's getting too tiresome for his taste that was simply it! It was in his human nature to tire out easily with the girls he's been dating. It wasn't anything new about him at all. Just plain human- male- nature.
He wanted someone… new.
That was it.
But at a deeper side of things, there wasn't a girl yet who could make him fall on his hands and knees. He won't let it happen, anyway. And the fact that his blood always runs hot when he sees another pretty face and equally hot bod… doesn't hurt one bit as well.
Hell, everyone wanted a taste of him. Why would he stick long to one girl when there is plenty of David Tyler to pass around?
He wasn't selfish. In fact, he was even generous.
"No Stella, it really is over and I'm sorry. I just don't think I deserve you. Don't make it anymore harder for me... please."
Yeah, like that was really the deal. He sighed inwardly.
"Please, David…" Stella's artfully made up face now all blotched and her always-have-been straight blonde hair in complete disarray, made David uncomfortable in a way. There was a limit to how long he could put up a pretense and it's slowly dwindling, as well as his patience.
It always happen every-freakin'-time.
Flirt with a cutie, get some action, party for some time, get tired of her, dump her on her ass (although making it look like it wasn't his fault)… then the waterworks. It gets tiring for some time and frustrating and if he lost his patience, he might just lose his cool and snap at her. Harshly.
"Stella…" There was warning in his tone that Stella didn't heed.
"But, David… I love you."
He looked at her for a short space of moment and rolled his eyes.
What a load of crap…
"No, Stella, you're not. You're in love with the idea that you love me."
He thrust his hands inside his jeans. He always hated those bogus words that women always throw out to anyone… anyone, but not really meaning them. 'I Love You' was only a jilted phrase that has lost its essence through time and abuse.
"B-but I really d-do," She stammered her shoulders heaving as she clutched at her tear-stained face.
David sighed heavily and looked at her soft blue eyes. He lightly grasped her chin and tilted her face up to his.
"Stella, look at me. No more tears, okay? It's over…"
He gave her one last lingering kiss, to remember him by, and walked away; tall lean frame steady, and crisp dark hair bobbing in his gait… not once looking back.
And that was that.
Sue shook her head and aimed an imaginary gun with a thumb and forefinger cocked in the direction of the retreating guy's back.
Bang! She maimed then dropped her arm heavily against her sides. What a pathetic excuse of a man…
What has the world gotten into lately? If pretty girls weren't anymore worthy of attention, even from one guy- handsome as he may be- what chance do plain girls like her have?
But that wasn't what was bothering her: it was the girl.
And her notebook lying somewhere under the desks that she still have to look for, before her parents get a chance to prepare a firing squad as soon as she gets home, not later than six. She needed those notes for her quiz the next day as well, she couldn't very well just leave it.
She peered inside the dimly lit room and saw the blonde girl shoulders shaking with the tears free flowing from her puffed-up eyes, with no signs of ever stopping.
Now how will she ever get inside to retrieve her book? Or she could risk firing squad… Again, she admonished herself for the umpteenth time on forgetting her book on her last period class. Cheena called her out so early to the quad she forgot about it.
Sue sighed defeated. There was only one logical way, although she would be berating herself for whatever might happen from then on. She pushed open the door and took tentative steps inside the room. The girl looked up expectantly, but seeing as it was only her, went back to weeping… er, howling.
Maybe she should reconsider the firing squad…
How could she cry so hard like that?
She thought glumly while staring at the pitiful sight. She suddenly felt like she had to do something… anything to get it over with so she could get home in time.
"Hi… uh, excuse me… miss?" She walked cautiously towards the girl, feeling more and more awkward, wanting to be somewhere else. "You may not know me, but I can't help feeling like, maybe you needed a friend, right now. A-Are you okay?"
Of course she wasn't okay! She just got dumped by Nunez High's prince, David Tyler. Jerk that he was, everyone wanted to be with him… which was a real mystery, for he was not the typical prince of any fairytale. In fact, he was a devil.
A really good-looking devil…
For the past four years, being just a mere bystander watching from the sidelines the lives of the much popular cliques in school, never did she knew anyone who wouldn't say they would rather be with the handsome and charming, basketball hero- asshole that he is- David Tyler, than the sensitive boy-next-door who likes you for you.
It just happens like that. Beauty was a necessity and without it, no one will survive the dreaded crossroads of ones life called high school, where Narcissism is customary.
Sigh… She could never understand how society thinks and moves about. She's never been 'in' anyway for she's always been a nobody. Why does she have to care?
Sue was already bracing herself for the 'huff' and the 'just-ignore-the-crazy-bitch-talking-to-me' and was truly caught off guard when Stella, rushed forward and wrapped her arms around her, sobbing into her neck.
"O-o-oooh… It's j-just t-t-terrible!" She broke into a fresh new wave of tears, drenching Sue's white pullover.
"There, there, it's gonna be alright." She said in soothing tones, not knowing if she should wrap her arms around her in return or push her away. She acquiesced by patting the top of her blonde head. "Everything's gonna be alright, you'll see…"
Sue knew her technique of comforting crying ladies, were for children who had nightmares. But being an only child, she didn't know anything else.
She pushed back her glasses which have slipped down her nose. "Let it all go… you will be fine. It's not like there's nothing left for you. You will always have the memories you shared. Right?"
Whatever stuff was coming out of her mouth must be comforting her for her howling dispersed, her sobbing slowly turning to sniffing.
Why did that guy ever break up with her? Although she was looking worse for wear, she held a beauty that most guys looked for in a woman. Hot, gorgeous and blonde.
Sue couldn't help eyeing the shirt with longing. It was the exact sameshirt she saw out on display on Juicy Couture which sold the most to-die-for clothes she has ever seen. But seeing as her parents were the most conservative folks there are in town, her fashion statement ranges from sweatshirts and jeans.
Her parents always believed that these influences would only muddle her brain and make her forget what's more important in life - which is a good college education, successful job and happy family. Drilled into her ever since preschool years…
Well, she never really complained for she wanted those as well. Who wouldn't? Sue dreams of becoming a writer and she believed that Princeton would pave her way to following her dreams.
That was why fashion, boys and partying was at the bottom of her life-plan list and because of it, the situation at hand isn't something she's good at.
Cheena was good at this. But she wasn't anywhere in sight.
Sue fumbled inside her bag and took out her handkerchief and gave it to Stella.
"Th-thank you." She took it and wiped away the remaining tears.
There was an awkward silence wherein Sue stared out at the windows and saw that the sun has slowly started to set.
Damn! If I'm not home by seven, my parents are gonna grill her to a crisp!
She turned to the Stella and saw her looking through her compact.
"How are you feeling?" Sue asked, sincerely concerned. Stella must've felt something deep for that jerk for her to behave this way.
"A little better."
Sue stared at her and saw traces of sadness still etched all over her pretty face, which was also clear in the way her shoulders lost its arrogant lift.
"I know you're concerned for your figure or something but I seriously believe that chocolate helps." Sue pushed her glasses back as her nerdy-self reared its head. "Studies show that chocolates contain endorphins that increase a person's moods and feelings. Endorphins meaning 'happy hormones'"
Again Sue braced herself for the cool-bullies-the-geek tirade, but received a faint smile instead.
"God, I love chocolates and now that you mentioned it, I feel much better for now I have an excuse to indulge."
"Glad to help… I think."
Stella chuckled. "You did. And I'm glad as well."
She took in a shaky breathe and walked towards the door, stopping, her hand steady on the handle, before turning round to add.
"Thanks again, uh… for the handkerchief. I'll return it as soon as I can." She hesitated before continuing. "Can I ask you a favor?"
"Sure, I guess…"
Stella looked around and whispered. "Would you mind keeping all this between ourselves?"
Sue grinned. "Of course."
"Thanks." She brightened up and added. "What's your name?"
"I'm just a nobody," Sue cast her eyes around dramatically. "But I'll be somebody to those who needed help."
Stella gave a mock bow. "Then I thank you, Ms. Nobody."
"Stella Carmichael." She grinned. "Well… thanks again, Sue. See you around then."
As soon as she left, Sue sighed in relief then immediately went down on all fours, crawling along the floor searching for her book. She found it under the teacher's desk, covered all over with scuff marks and dust.
Must've been stepped on and kicked around. Poor book.
Sue glanced at the clock on the wall and cursed under her breath. She flew down the staircase, accidentally bumping on a late straggler, forgetting to apologize in her hurry. She ran the entire length of the track and field into the parking lot where her blue Sedan was parked like an awaiting dog. She fumbled with her keys in her hurry, dropping them twice on the gravel.
Finally after a strain of expletives which she swore never to tell to her parents, she managed to jab her key into the ignition and swerve through the driveway just as a guy burst out of the building, chest heaving as he panted for air. He looked at the car that just left and muttered a blatant stream of curses, directed at its owner.
He was just walking down the staircase, whistling peacefully to himself, when a blur of brown curls and a lingering scent of watermelon, whooshed past him. He missed a step and slid on the next.
Good thing there wasn't anyone around who saw his embarrassing uncoordinated jaunt, which was ironic to his being a lithe basketball player.
"Dammit!" David yelled out as the car turned the corner and disappeared from his view.