July 31 – New York, Part 1

“Ceci?” I opened one eye and saw my mom’s lovely face peeking out from my bedroom door. “Oh hey mom.” I waved a hand and invited her to come in.

“How are you, sweetie?” She asked, taking a seat at the edge of my bed. I curled to my side so I can face her. “How was the Dominican? Do you feel sick?”

I shook my head. “D.R. was good. I actually had fun. I’m just a bit tired. Maybe I’ll sleep for a while.”

I closed my eyes again as my mom gently stroked my hair. It was so comforting and relaxing, for a moment it melted my tiredness away. “By the way, a boy came by here when you were away and he left several calls for you too. I think he said his name was Owen.” My eyes opened. A look of worry strained my face. Great. The stress is back on. 

“Is there something wrong?” My mom asked, after noticing my reaction. “Do you want to talk about it?”

“Nope. Not really.” I mumbled.

My mom smiled. “Well sweetie, if you need anything…” She leaned and gave me a kiss on my forehead before leaving my room.

I lay on my bed, staring at the faint silver ceiling hovering above me. I could hear my wall clock tick as each second pass by. I closed my eyes and willed for sleep to come. The sound of the clock grew louder, this time accompanied by the soft buzz of the air-conditioning system. I sighed and sat on the edge of my bed. 

With /him/ on my mind, I don’t think sleep will ever come.




I decided to go out and walk around the city for a bit. The sun is still high despite the fact that it was nearly dinnertime. People crowded the streets even though it was a Sunday. Normally, this wouldn’t have bothered me. But not today. Today, I want the whole city to be empty. 

An emptiness that can match my own. 

I slid inside a nearby Starbucks. The line was long and the place, almost full. I sighed and left the place. I stood outside, thinking where I could escape next to, and hailed for a cab. The guy next to me grabbed the taxi’s door just as I did. I almost argued with the guy but he turned and I saw a pair of familiar blue eyes matched by a devilish grin on his face. “Ceci? You’re Ceci, right?” 

I pushed my sunglasses off my face. “Nate?!” 

His smile grew wider. “You in a hurry? You can take the cab if you like. I’ll try and catch another one.”

I shook my head. “No. It’s okay. I think I’ll just walk or something.”

He chuckled. “How ‘bout both of us get in? I’m off to bring this to Morg.” He lifted a bag of containing a pint of ice cream. “Where are you going?”

“Nowhere.” I muttered.

“Cool.” He smiled. “You getting in or what?”

I had a sudden flash of déjà vu. The last time Nate asked me to take a ride with him was the first time I met him. It was my first day in school. And those few minutes I spent with him landed me in Gossip Girl’s blog. Since then I have stayed away from him.

You would think that I would have learned my lesson by now. 

The cab sped up after I closed the door and Nate gave the driver directions to Morgan’s place. “So,” Nate started. “I heard you’re dating Owen Rushworth.” I nodded. “I /was/.” I added, having to keep reminding people that.

Nate raised his brow. “You guys broke up? Already?”

I shrugged. “Yeah. He lied. I lied. It’s not exactly the perfect relationship.”

We were both silent for a while before Nate started talking again. “How is he by the way?” A smile forming on his lips. “Is he staying with Alice?”

I nodded. I was a slightly surprised that he knew Owen’s mom but then I realized what Cam and Chris once said about Owen and Nate being close.

I sighed and shook my head as the pain of the realization slowly start to sink in. 

“You okay?” Nate suddenly asked.

“No I’m not.” I finally said. “I just realized that I am talking to a person that I barely know about a person that I thought I knew. I feel cheated, Nate. I feel stupid and cheated.” I looked away and focused on the traffic light across the street. It’s weird to have a sudden outburst in front of a stranger.

“Hey. Why don’t you talk to him again?” I looked at him straight. He smiled. “You’re right, I know Rush more than you do. I think I know why he didn’t tell you about his past. But you’re not gonna hear it from me. You have to talk to him.”

“But why? To set my set myself up for another round of disappointment?” I shot back. 

“Look, I can see that you’re still into him.” Nate said. I neither denied nor confirmed his statement. “Rush is a good guy.” He continued. “Give him a chance. He’s a far better man than I am, that’s for sure.”
 
I couldn’t help but smile lightly. “No offense Nate, but based on your track record…it wouldn’t be difficult for guys to be better than you.”

Nate laughed loudly before turning serious again. “No really. Just hear him out, okay. Listen to what he has to say. You don’t have to get back together with him if you don’t want to. But after you’ve listened…I hope you find it in your heart to forgive him.”

The way he said it sounded so solemn. It was almost like he was whispering a prayer. Somehow I knew, that prayer wasn’t just meant for me. Was he wishing the same thing from Cam? Summer? Morgan?

The cab finally stopped in front of a tall elegant building. Nate gave the driver a few bills before stepping out..

He waved goodbye and wished me luck. He flashed his signature grin before entering the building.

I sat there quietly, staring at the space now vacated next to me. My thoughts jarred when the driver cleared his throat impatiently. “Where next, Miss?” He looked at me from his rearview mirror. I looked out; the sun was slowly starting to set. But it felt like my day was only beginning. 

“Brooklyn. Please take me to Brooklyn.”







----
FU.CK YOU POLYBOT. FU.CK YOU.
I had to edit my story a thousand times because it wouldn't let me post it because it had some bad words---when in fact, it really has none.

Ugh. Hate this story. I like the set though. :[
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