Chapter tune: Alice Cooper – Only my heart talking
The evening after the police incident, Jared showed up at Rose’s door while she was returning from work. He had barely slept, barely eaten – it was a good thing he, at least, showered- but none of it mattered as he was determined to fix what he had broken.
Unfortunately for him, he underestimated the damage that had been done.
“What are you doing here?” Rose said fuming. “I don’t want to talk to you, go away!”
“Rose, I’m so sorry for the way I treated you. But it was all a misunderstanding! I can explain everything”
He started telling her what happened but Rose cut him off. “Do you have any idea how this sounds? Do you expect me to believe any of what you’re telling me? Because I heard you went with Molly the day after this… misunderstanding. Or was that a misunderstanding too?” she said furiously.
Jared was amazed at how quickly the news travelled in this goddamned town. He couldn’t spell a word.
“I see you’re not denying it” Rose said coldly. “So what do you want now? Did Molly not satisfy you enough? I can’t believe I’m having this conversation again. You can’t treat people like that and then expect everything to be okay!”
“No, it wasn’t like that. Please Rose, you have to understand…” But how could he possibly justify his behavior? It was useless.
“I don’t want to hear anything you have to say. You said more than enough the other day. You know what, you’re a… you’re a jerk! I shouldn’t have spent a minute of my time with you! Don’t talk to me ever again!”
Jared left disappointed. Why, really? Did he honestly expect things to be fixed just like that, just because he bothered to show up, throwing poor excuses at her? But most of all, he felt that way because he let Rose and himself down once again. She was right, he was a jerk. A selfish prick. He had been that way for almost all his life.
His steps led him to the beach. The bakery was closed but the there was light and movement in the apartment above. Miss Myrtle was still up.
“Hi miss Myrtle, excuse me for visiting at this hour” he said a little embarrassed when she answered the door.
“Oh, don’t worry dearie, I wasn’t going to sleep right now. Wait, let me get you some apple pie and we’ll talk, ok? So, what’s been bothering you dearie? I haven’t seen you for some days now” she said with concern.
“That’s because I screwed up and I have no idea how to make things better” Jared said. They sat at the table and he quickly started explaining what happened.
Miss Myrtle was listening carefully. “Well” she said in a serious tone when he was done talking “I admit that’s a pretty difficult situation you have created my dear boy. I’m afraid I can’t help you enough. It doesn’t matter what you – or I, for that matter – say to her now, the only thing that matters is what you do. I don’t thing it’s too late, but you know people don’t have an on-off switch, or whatever you kids call that. Maybe you should consider leaving her alone for the time being, if that’s what she wishes. Don’t push her now, have some patience and be selfless. To love is to consider and respect what the other person needs, even if sometimes it is the last thing we want.”
“But what if I lose her forever?”
“Let’s hope this will not happen dearie” miss Myrtle said “despite what you did, I believe you. But you can’t just say you love her, you have to act like it.”
“I didn’t say-”
“Don’t be embarrassed dearie. I know you love her, but she has to see it too.”
Jared left quite sad. He hoped for a more positive point of view, especially from miss Myrtle, but he sensed that she was right. He was afraid of the possibility he’d lose Rose forever, but he knew what had to be done. He would give her what she needed, even if it was the last thing he’d ever do.
When he got home he couldn’t sleep. The dawn found him smoking and thinking.
“Hey, are you alright?” he heard Connor’s voice as he was lost in his thoughts.
“Well, not really. Look man, I need to go away for some time. But before I go, I wanted to apologize for my behavior the other night. And I have to confess something to you, brother. I should have told you years ago”
He told Connor everything that happened between him and their father, and how he was one of the reasons he killed himself. He also told him about what happened the night he thought the police were after him. Connor stayed silent for a while.
“I’m sorry man, I know that I fucked up…”
“No” Connor finally said “don’t apologize. Look brother, I don’t hate you. I mean, it sucks a little but… I don’t miss our father really. I don’t even think I ever loved him. Is that weird? What I miss is you, we used to tell everything to each other, remember? And I worry a little about you man. For the past years I see you transforming into some copy of him, with the drinking and the picking fights. How long will you have to defend yourself from him? It’s over man. He’s gone now, he can’t hurt us. So no, I will not blame you for what happened. I won’t even blame him, he was a sad miserable person. But I’d hate to see you turning into that person. I want you to be happy brother, you know I do.”
Jared stayed silent. He knew everything his brother said was true.
“I won’t ask you where you’re going, that’s your business” Connor continued talking. “But I expect you to be here in three months for the wedding.”
“What? Are you serious?” Jared said joyfully “Congratulations little brother! I wish you every happiness”. Connor pretended to not have noticed that his brother avoided mentioning if he would indeed be back.
Before he finally went to sleep, he looked himself in the mirror. There was only one man who deserved to be cut off from his life; the ghost of the man he despised all these years, the man he’d become.
When the evening came, he left town.
PS: The pictures and the writing were not exactly how I wanted them to be. I was hoping for a much longer chapter, where many other things would take place. Unfortunately, my time to play has been very limited these days, so I just decided to post the first half. So sorry! Also, please excuse my awesome (not) photo editing skills lol! Thanks so much for reading! 😁