(A/N) So got a review. And I freaking loved it. It really made my day because no one ever reviews anything, I felt like this site was deserted. But it's not and that makes my life. So thank you BeeTheMagicUser, it was a lovely comment and you are awesome. That is all.
Read All About It
When Jesse woke up the next morning he knew it was going to be One of Those Days. Those days where you know everything that can go wrong will go wrong and there will be absolutely nothing you can do about it because it's completely out of your control.
First, Jesse woke up alone. It happens, of course it happens, but something about the way Robbie's side of the bed was barren and cold from not being used for a few hours made Jesse's heart sink. Then he got up, turned off the alarm on his cellphone before it was due to go off and padded barefoot into the bathroom. He ran the shower and stepped out to head into the kitchen for some much needed caffeine. He knew he was going to need it.
The coffee maker was broken.
Jesse stared at the coffee maker blankly, only a slight scowl set on his lips. Robbie hadn't even left a note to let him know about it. With a deep, agitated breath out through his mouth, Jesse headed back into the bathroom, opting to skip the caffeine and go straight for the warmth the water would bring.
The shower was longer than Jesse had intended as he leaned against the wall, letting the water from the shower head beat on his back and run skimming in rivulets down his olive skinned back, over his ass and caressing the back of his legs. He got caught up in the warmth the water provided, warmth he knew he wouldn't be seeing for a while because of yesterday.
Every time Jesse did something to screw up what was going good, it took longer and longer for Robbie to bounce back. At first he'd be concerned for Jesse, and hold him and cuddle him and tell him he knew and that he understood and that he was fine with waiting for him. It wasn't his fault. Coming out is a scary thing to do. He could wait. It would only take time.
But maybe it was taking longer than Robbie had originally thought.
Maybe Jesse wasn't ever going to be ready to tell his parents. Or their friends. Or even other people in general.
And then Jesse got mad.
So what if he didn't want to tell anyone? It was his life, it was his decision—since when could Robbie boss him around like that? Why did it even matter? They watched movies, went to dinner, met up with friends together. Sure Jesse had never called it a date, and he hadn't held Robbie's hand even once, not even jokingly, and maybe he didn't sit very close to Robbie at all, but they still went out, didn't they? That was the point. Maybe Robbie was just asking for too much.
Was he really though? Or was Jesse really being a wimp about the whole thing and should he just tell everyone and get it done and over with?
It seemed like a good idea at times. Over and over again, Jesse would think about it. Dream about telling everyone, coming clean, going on a real date where he wasn't afraid to give Robbie a little peck on the cheek—or even on the lips. It wasn't like Jesse didn't want to be public about their relationship. It was just that…it was so scary. Too much to think about. Too much to do at once. Not enough time to think it over.
And then he realized that he'd been in the shower for over an hour and a half and his skin was pruny, and oh God, he was gonna be late if he didn't get going now.
Jesse flew from the shower and rushed through the process of dressing himself in order to be out the door and to the bus stop on time. Because lo and behold, Robbie took the car.
"Shit, shit, shit," Jesse chanted to himself as he flicked glances between his cellphone to check the time and the street to see if the bus was on its way. At around seven forty, the bus had finally pulled around the corner and Jesse was practically whooping in joy.
On the bus, Jesse sat between a large, balding man with stank breath, equally smelly body odor, and tons of bags in and around his legs. His large body was spilling over onto Jesse's seat, causing him to lean sideways into a Chinese woman carrying a big, plastic, plaid bag with clothes peeking out the top that was firing rapidly into her phone in Mandarin—which he knew from a year of Mandarin in college.
Jesse sunk into his seat as he stared bleakly at the woman across from him with piercings in her face and a crying toddler in pink on her lap.
It was definitely going to be One of Those Days.
At the office, Jesse was sitting in his little cubicle, tapping away at his computer when Julie Traska, a coworker of his, decided to drape her form over the back of Jesse's chair, her breath blowing by his ear. He shivered.
"Jesse," she crooned into his ear, a laugh at the edge of her tone.
Jesse nearly twitched. "Yes?"
"Where are you headed for lunch today?" she inquired, removing herself from Jesse's chair, much to his relief, but the irritation was still there. This happened every day. Every day Julie would lay herself in some lewd way near Jesse so as to attract his attention. And every day Julie would say his name in different way; sometimes it was husky, sometimes low and sultry, sometimes loud and cheerful, and then like today, crooned into his ear like a flirty joke.
Jesse couldn't stand Julie Traska.
Julie didn't know that though.
"I think I might skip lunch today," he informed the brunette.
Julie sighed, a small, girly thing. "Again? You never come out to lunch with us. You never want to hang out after work either," Julie gripped his chair and swiveled it around so Jesse's fingers slid off the keyboard, tapping a key on the way, and faced her.
Jesse stared at her wide, green eyes that were the color of a dark, drizzly forest, her small, slender nose, and her full lips. Julie Traska, in the most general sense, was a beautiful girl. Lots of the other men that Jesse worked with coveted the way Julie practically threw herself at him, every day, throughout work. How she was always inviting him places and some even resented him a bit for turning her down so much, though it had never amounted to much but a few glares and some slurred words.
Jesse felt bad, he really did, that Julie felt that way about him. But he wasn't anyone else. He wasn't going to date her to keep up appearances. Lots of people didn't date out of choice, that didn't make them gay, and Jesse knew that. Dating Julie as a façade was a ludicrous idea Jesse had never once entertained, but staring at her now, in all her earnest. Well… Was he really such a bad person for having lunch with her?
It was only lunch.
"Actually," he began, turning out of Julie's clutches to tap at a few keys on the keyboard and exit out of a few open windows. "I think I will go out for lunch today."
Julie lit up like Lights on the Lake at Christmas time.
"Seriously?!" she squealed in delight. "Alright, just let me get my jacket and we can head out."
Jesse listened to her bound off and suddenly this wasn't feeling like such a good idea. And Jesse found himself wondering what Robbie would have done if he were in his position.
Easy, Jesse thought, grabbing his coat from the hanger beside his desk. He wouldn't be in this mess in the first place because he's got the guts to tell people he's gay.
Julie and Jesse sat at a small, square table at a local restaurant. Jesse picked at his meatloaf sandwich idly, head propped up with his right hand while Julie blabbed on and on about something or other, and Jesse didn't even notice when she stopped talking and merely stared at him.
Julie knew she was the kind of girl a lot of men figured was an easy lay. The bubbly attitude, her ample breast size, the way she wasn't afraid to talk and joke about sexual activities she'd had part in. But that wasn't all there was to her. She could carry on a conversation no matter what it was about, she was an interesting person if someone took the time to figure that out. And Julie had thought that person would be Jesse.
He didn't look at her the way the other men did at the paper. She wasn't just eye candy for him until he had to go home and deal with an unhappy marriage or relationship. She knew he saw her as a person, maybe not a person he particularly liked, but a person none the less and that had made her heart soar. She wanted to be closer to Jesse. Close enough to understand the silence, the thoughts that pulled him away from his work for over an hour before he had to rush to finish an article because he'd been daydreaming for so long. And she wanted to know what that small, warm smile was for. Or who, if there was someone else. She just wanted to know.
But how could she when he wasn't even paying the slightest bit of attention to her?
Jesse broke from his blank stare out the restaurant window to look at Julie. He could feel his cheeks heating up at being caught not listening to a word she'd said. He decided to play it off with a small laugh.
"I'm sorry," he heard himself saying. "I'm a little…distracted, I guess."
Julie leaned forward, right hand laid neatly on top of the left, her soft, baby pink nails shiny in the light. "I could tell,"
"Could you?" Jesse asked with another laugh. "I'm sorry," he said again. "I know I'm being rude."
"It's alright; I don't think it's rude. It sure must be something to get you so caught up though."
Jesse was hesitant to answer; "Kind of,"
Julie's eyes twinkled, a small smile playing at her lips. "Wanna tell me about it?"
Taken aback slightly at how forward Julie was being, Jesse began to feel flustered. Obviously he wasn't going to tell Julie a thing about Robbie, but…that didn't mean he couldn't make a hypothetical situation, did it?
"Um, well," he started, looking down, hands fidgeting with the hem of his dark blue sweater—a sweater Robbie had given him during the first year they were dating. "Hypothetically, I'm in this relationship—"
"You're in a relationship?" Julie asked, only a slight tinge of jealousy in her words.
Jesse shook his head quickly. "No, no, Julie. I said hypothetically. It's not real."
"Hypotheticals are always real, aren't they?"
"But in this case…"
"Not," Jesse said, a bit harsher than intended. "In this case."
Julie merely nodded, and sat back, waiting for Jesse to continue. He did.
"So, hypothetically," he shot a quick glance at Julie to make sure she wasn't going to interrupt with anything ridiculous, and continued when she only smiled innocently. "I'm in this relationship, but no one knows. Everyone thinks I'm single and that I'm only living with this person because it's just easier on my finances or until I get in a real relationship." Jesse licked his lips a bit uncertainly, eyes darting around the restaurant as if afraid someone were listening and would report everything he said back to Robbie—or worse, that they'd piece it all together and figure out he was gay.
But that was being paranoid.
He braved forward anyway, "And hypothetically, this person I'm in a secret relationship with is getting really upset that I won't tell anyone we're in a relationship and is pulling away and making me feel really horrible because I don't want to lose hi—er, this person, but I don't know what to do." Jesse looked up at Julie, eyes showing emotion, more emotion than he wanted, begging her with his eyes. "What do I do?" he whispered desperately.
Julie was breathless. Taken away by the raw, earnest emotion in his face. She'd never seen someone so completely upset before and it almost stopped her heart. She had to work to clear her throat and answer him as best she could.
"I think," she started slowly, choosing her words wisely. She didn't want to mess up. Not when things were so important. This was obviously a real issue with real emotions, and she was throwing the hypothetical bullshit out the window. "You should start by apologizing—"
"I did," Jesse replied, leaning forward, no longer bothering with the façade.
Julie held up a finger to silence him. "I said start. That isn't all." She took a deep breath. "Tell this person exactly why you're sorry, explain everything clearly so they understand, and then…" she trailed off.
Jesse was hanging on to every word, waiting, pining, for an answer. Just, God, any answer would do right now. He just wanted someone to tell him what to do. He couldn't do this on his own and fuck if it didn't feel amazing to finally be getting advice from a third party and not just his own messed up, paranoid, ridiculous thoughts.
"And then," she repeated. They locked eyes, green on brown, emotion flashing between them and Julie was almost swept away by it, but she held her ground. "You should tell someone."
Jesse very well might have crumbled to the ground in tears if he weren't in such a public place with more than twenty people around.
That was the whole problem. Julie didn't know, she didn't understand.
He just couldn't tell anyone.