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Henley kisses Hunter one last time, as she springs up from his bed, tugging her black skinny jeans up her legs, the color matching her lace bra. Her red lipstick visibly faded.
“Come on Hen, where are you going?” he says reaching for her, wrapped up in charcoal gray bed sheets. The lighting dim and romantic.
“I have to go, I’m planning your sister’s wedding, remember?” she says looking around for her shirt, her blonde bob tousled, yet somehow still fabulous. That was Henley for you.
Hunter smiles as he reaches under his pillow, pulling her black shirt out and waving it, in a teasing manner.
Henley glares at him with a smirk as she goes to grab it, he yanks it away from her, making his way onto his knees to face her. He hides it behind his back, a sly smirk on his face.
“Just stay,” he says, pulling her by the waist, his puppy dog, brown eyes almost enough to make Henley melt on the spot.
Henley cups his face and kisses him, as Hunter lets his guard down a bit falling into her embrace, she snatches her shirt back. Hunter laughs against her lips.
“Ah! Sneaky,” he says his voice raspy, as he pulls away, looking at her. Henley raises her eyebrows, she laughs, slipping her black tank top on.
Hunter rolls his eyes and falls back on to the bed.
Henley grabs her black high heeled booties and sits on the edge of the bed to put them on.
Hunter leans over her shoulder, nuzzling into her, he kisses her neck.
“Stay. Come on, you never stay over anymore,” Hunter whispers, his breath tickling her, as he plants another kiss on her neck.
Henley smiles to herself slightly, turning her head, her eyes meet his. A mix of brown and hazel.
“This was a one-time thing Hunter, it doesn’t mean we’re back together.”
Hunter smirks, leaning in, he kisses her passionately. And Henley. She lets him. Like the many many MANY times she has before.
“You just keep telling yourself that,” he whispers against her lips.
Henley moves away from him, and stands up. Hunter sighs at the distance created.
She shrugs her leather jacket on as Hunter watches, clearly bothered.
“What?” she says looking at him, trying to act aloof.
“You keep saying this is a one-time thing. But babe, we’ve been at this for years.”
“This is the last time.”
“You’ve been saying that for years too. It’s practically your mantra,” he chuckles holding out his arms to the side, in a very high and mighty way.
Henley looks at him, narrowing her glare.
“What?” he says huffing, “Come on Hen, I love you, you know that I love you. So the question is… do you still love me?” he says pulling her to him.
“Don’t, Hunter. I can’t go there. Not now,” she says pulling his hands away from her waist.
“Okay then, when?”
“You and I tried to do the whole relationship thing. We don’t work.”
“Are you forgetting everything that happened?”
“No. Of course not. I couldn’t if I tried. But we were kids back then. I made mistakes. But that’s not who I am now. That was never who I truly was, even back then. I just lost my way for a bit. But it IS different now.”
“I just can’t do that again. Not if I want to keep my sanity,” she says grabbing her purse.
“Hen, it wouldn’t be the same. You know that.”
“No. I don’t know that Hunter,” she says looking at him with uncertainty.
“I’ve changed over the past decade,” he says rolling his eyes at the notion of having this same fight. “And I’ve worked really hard to put my life back together. I thought you of all people would appreciate that.”
“I do. And I am so glad that you have. You’re healthy and that means the world to me. But I can’t honestly say that I trust you with my heart,” Henley says just blurting it out.
“Are we seriously talking about Alexis again?” he says frustrated as he looks away.
“I’m sorry. I know its ancient history. But it is always there. It’s always going to be there,” she says huffing and shrugging her shoulders.
“Henley,” he says getting out of bed and taking her hands in his, “I was out of my mind when that happened. You can’t honestly think that I would have ever done something like that if I was sober?”
“I know that. I’ve heard this same speech over and over again. We’ve had this exact same fight at nauseam, but every time I turn around there she is. And I just-” she says choking up.
“Listen, I am the first person to admit that what I did was wrong. And I am not trying to pretend that it didn’t happen or make light of it. But, I’m not the one that kept in touch with Alexis after college you and Piper did that all on your own. So how can you blame me for that? If she’s around it’s because you allow her to be. I don’t want any part of her or that night. Trust me. It was one of the worst nights of my life.”
“Her being in our lives is all your sister, she’s too understanding. She forgives everyone. Me, I can’t stand that that…female.”
“Whoa, Catty,” he says laughing as he tucks a piece of hair behind her ear, trying to soften the moment. “Trust me, I’m not a fan of her either.”
“Yea well she ruined my life. You were mine. And she just couldn’t let me have that.”
Hunter looks at Henley, his brow furrows, as his eyes water slightly.
“I’m still yours,” he says cupping her face in his hands.
“It’s not the same. I’m not the same. Whatever this is between us, is not the same,” she says pulling her hands from his and walking away from him.
“I never meant to hurt you. I was in a bad place back then, and I dragged you through my mess. Believe me- if I could go back and change all of that, I would. I swear to you Hen.”
“I don’t blame you entirely, I know that you had a problem. You were going through a lot and I just hate her so much for taking advantage of that. I don’t hate many people. But I HATE her. She was one of my best friends, I’ve known her my whole life. She stayed up with me, as I cried worried out of my mind wondering where the hell you were, when you would go on one of your benders. She knew how scared I was to lose you. She knew how much I loved you. And then-” Henley’s voice cracks as her eyes water.
“Hen, hey, come here,” he says cupping her face, wiping a stray tear from her cheek with his thumb, his eyes glistening too. “I swear to you, all I’ve ever wanted was you.”
“I have to go,” she says pulling away from him, she brushes away a few other tears as she heads for the door.
“Henley. Hen-” he says rushing after her.
“This is exactly why I didn’t want to have this conversation, I knew all this shit would come back up. I already lived through this once, I don’t need to live through it again. I can’t. And you are the last person I need to comfort me about this.”
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to upset you. But that’s the most we’ve talked in months.”
“I told you, that if we were going to do this, sex was all this was supposed to be. I don’t want anything more. I can’t have anything more. Not with you. It’s too hard.”
“Henley. You and I are never going to be that type of couple that can just have sex and have it not mean anything. We were each other’s firsts. Couples don’t forget their firsts.”
“We’re not a couple.”
“Yes we are. We always will be, and you know that. You just won’t admit it,” he says barely above a whisper. His heart aching in his chest.
“I have to go,” she says trying to get to the door.
“You know it helps to talk about it. You haven’t dealt with any of your feelings, all these years. You just shut down, and push past it. That’s why you’re still so angry.”
“Still angry? I have a right to be angry! You were the love of my life. And then you screwed one of my best friends. But hey it’s all cool, because you were too high and wasted for it to mean anything, right? Let me ask you a question if the situation was reversed and you found me in bed with Leo or someone you loved and trusted, would you be able to forgive me?”
Hunter stills, not knowing what more he could say.
“I would be a wreck. Completely devastated. Of course I would be. But I would still want to be with you, because I know that no matter what, I will always be in love with you. And if I knew you still loved me and that you were sorry… I’d find a way to forgive you. I’d fight like hell to make it work. The way I see it is, I’d rather have you in my life and love you, then have to miss you and be miserable for the rest of my life. Henley we have something here, something that most people don’t get to have in a lifetime. Can you honestly tell me you don’t still feel that?”
Henley softens needing to give herself and her heart a break.
“I can’t do this anymore,” she says her tone defeated. She leaves his apartment.
Hunter watches her walk away from him, for yet another night. He runs his hands through his hair, sighing loudly. Glancing around his now very empty and lonely apartment.
To be continued….
* I do not take credit for any images used in my edits or otherwise.*