Gone Again

“Et le tour est joué.”

Geneviève’s use of that French phrase fit the bill. “Yes, the deed is done. There is no going back now.”

“How do you feel?” I could hear in Gen’s voice that she was trying her best to keep to her role as good friend rather than professional therapist.

“A little nervous and excited, but I feel good. I need this.” I felt small as I sat on the couch surrounded by the mountains of crates and boxes around me.

Over the past two weeks, Ella and Gen had helped me crate most of my personal items to be placed in storage. Gen had even made a special trip down from Montreal to help out.  My older brother Theo would be renting my place out fully furnished to an international professional couple next week so I was happy to be leaving my home in his capable hands. Having a property manager mogul brother had definitely worked in my favor. He was always scrupulous when it came to potential renters and had negotiated a rent that would cover my mortgage and make me nice little profit.

“You are doing the right thing by taking this contract. Remember, you aren’t running away. You just need some distance to regain some perspective on your life. Take the time to figure out what you want and what you need. I will miss you but merci au bon Dieu for video calling.”

“Well, I’ll be in Puerto Rico for 6 months so you have no excuse for not taking a trip down to see me in person.”

“Don’t worry. Ella is already making plans for us.” I heard paper rustling in the background. “My next client is going to be here in 10 minutes so I will give you a call later.”

We hung up and I threw my cell onto the couch. I walked around the house from room to room, realizing how Zen everything looked without all my little trinkets and dust catchers. I stood at the bay window and looked out, thinking of the new chapter that lay ahead of me. It would be strange being away from it all.

I wonder what Mother will do when Simon gets into trouble and I am not here to fix it?

I wouldn’t be available to respond at her every beck and call and she knew it – probably the reason why she had been giving me the silent treatment for days. For once, Mother would have to cope with Simon all on her own and it was high time that she did. She had created the spoiled Simon problem and I had enabled it for far too long. I would definitely make the most of my time away. No more self-appointed gatekeeper.

I heard my cell phone ringing from the living room and rushed to answer without looking at the caller id.

“Hello?”

As soon as I heard the silent pause on the other end, I knew who it was. Shit.

“So you finally decided to answer.” Dex’s voice was low and deep. He. Was. Pissed. Which was somewhat surprising after the dozens of pitiful voice messages and texts he had sent over the past two weeks.

I love you Delaney. Please call me back. We need to talk.

The condoms weren’t mine. I mean, they were mine but I was bringing them along for the guys, you know, just in case.

If you really loved me, you wouldn’t be so sadistic like this. Is that what I get for treating you like the Queen that you are?

Come on, I know that you still love me. Call me back. I’m waiting.

This is not like you Delaney. I know that you are listening to your friends, especially that Ella. You know that she has always been a bitch with me. They don’t have your best interest at heart. They are just jealous of you and what we have.

In the beginning, it had taken every last shred of my willpower to not call him back and tell him to go fuck himself.

But that book Gen had lent me had opened my eyes big and wide, to the point where I knew that I had dodged a very big bullet. I had stayed up all night reading and by the time the sun had risen, I had read it twice. Engaging with Dex was the last thing I should do especially since it would only feed his fire.

I really should have looked before picking up the cell but now, I couldn’t bring myself to hang up. I wouldn’t let him think that I was sitting at home crying my eyes out. Or that he had won. There was no way in hell I would let him win.

“What do you want?” I kept my voice emotionless.

“We need to talk. It’s not right how you have been ignoring me. It’s been 2 weeks.”

It’s not right!? Fuck you! That is what I really wanted to say but I reigned myself in.

“Did you enjoy the Bahamas with the boys?” I couldn’t help myself, my voice full of fake honey oozing down my chin.

Dex was quiet for a minute. “You know very well that I didn’t.”

“Isn’t that a shame. I’ve gotta go.  I have better things to do than waste my time with you.”

“No, don’t hang up! We need to talk. I need to see you and explain. I need to apologize in person.”

“I’m not interested in anything you have to say Dex.”

“Look, just give me one more chance. I’ll be back in Toronto in 5 days, for good, no more assignments for the long term. Promise me that we can see each other as soon as I get back. You owe me that at the very least.”

“I owe you nothing.”

There was silence on the line again. I knew that he was trying to figure out how to break me down. He would not give up until he decided that he was through with me. That much I knew. But I was way ahead of him now.

“It doesn’t matter what you say. I won’t take no for an answer. If you really didn’t want to hear from me Delaney, you would have blocked my number by now.” His reasoning was only half true but I said nothing. “I won’t give up. I’ll see you in 5 days. From the airport, I’m coming straight to your place. I love you.”

“If that’s what you want to do, I can’t stop you. But I will definitely not be seeing you in 5 days.”

I hung up on him, scrolled to my cell’s auto reject call settings and added Dex’s number to the list that had remained empty. Until now. I picked up my plane ticket from the coffee table and smiled at the date.

You’ll be back in 5, eh? I’ll be gone in 3.

The vision of a confused Dex standing at my front door, expecting me but face to face with strangers amused me to no end.

I wished that I didn’t feel such complete and total satisfaction at that image in my head but I couldn’t help it.

Karma was a bitch. And I had become her sister.

©2015 Marquessa Matthews

Day 16: Third Time’s the Charm – Part 3 (from Day 4 and 13) –Today, imagine you work in a place where you manage lost or forgotten items. What might you find in the pile? For those participating in our serial challenge, reflect on the theme of “lost and found,” too. So, today’s twist: If you’d like to continue our serial challenge, also reflect on the theme of “lost and found” more generally in this post.

Note to the reader: This is the third and final installment of the serial challenge. Let me know if you liked it.

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