around the whims and happiness of three men. It was just a trip into the
forbidden. A way out of a bad situation and forward into nothingness.
always there for me… Until he wasn’t.
for me and he never regretted it.
Self-absorbed, self-obsessed, and self-serving. He was never the one I wanted.
so much more. It could’ve been so much better. And that’s why I’m turning back.
what happened?” Bric asks.
sitting at our booth in the White Room. Before I left, I’d sit in the middle of
the bench, Quin would sit across from me in a chair, and Bric would sit to my
still to my left, Quin isn’t here yet—if he’s coming at all—and Adley is in her
baby seat on my right.
is familiar—but off.
went to bed.”
there on the couch for a while trying to figure out what happened.”
you come up with?” Bric is looking very intently at me. Like everything I’m
saying is critically important.
me, that’s what I came up with, Bric!”
Bric says, throwing me one of those Don’t overreact looks.
serious. There’s no other explanation for it. He hate-fucked me. Revenge fuck.
Whatever you want to call it. That’s what happened last night.” I sigh and try
not to feel depressed and sad. “And then this morning I got out of bed to go
check on Adley when she woke up, and when I came back, he was gone.”
Bric asks. “Where’d he go?”
left,” I say. “I texted him. Asked if he’d be here for breakfast. And he never
mad,” Bric says.
huff. “He told me that last night too. He spelled it out very clearly. He was
worried about me. Sad about my leaving. But then when I came back—”
pretty typical reaction,” Bric says.
that. Which is why I’m not going to make a big deal about this. But I don’t
know if this is going to work, Bric. He might not want me. He might just want
to hurt me. Exactly the way I hurt him.”
says, like I’m being ridiculous.
being ridiculous,” I say. “Maybe he’s not out to hurt me. But he’s doing
something, Bric. He’s playing a game, but I’m pretty sure we’re not all playing
the same game.”
Rochelle. You have to expect that. He’s gonna come around.”
that mean? Come around? Do you really think he’s gonna fall back in love with
me the way he was? Because I don’t. I think he’s here for us. Me, you, and him together. And that’s all.”
his hand across his scratchy jaw as he thinks this over, so I check on Adley.
She fell asleep in the car on the way over here and hasn’t woken up yet. Bric
is still thinking.
want an us, Bric.”
in the eye and says. “I do. But I get it. And I’m fine with you and Quin
getting your little happy ending. But I’m telling you, Rochelle, he’s just
trying to protect himself right now and the best way to let him work that out
and ensure you two get back together is to have an us.”
doesn’t trust me.”
good reason,” Bric counters.
that,” I say, starting to get angry. “I understand that. But the whole point of
us doing this… game… or whatever it is, was so that you can help me figure this
out. I want him, Bric. You’re supposed to help me.”
as the words come out of my mouth I realize how stupid that is. I trust no one
and I have very good reasons for that. I’ve learned over the course of my life
that people are selfish. People are out for themselves. People are liars. I
have a lot of experience in being lied to.
Bricman definitely fits all those assumptions I have about people. And then