And I wasn’t.
I was only interested in leaving Nevada.
“Those are all East Coast,” Elena states the obvious.
“I know,” I say glumly. “I thought about Europe, but figured that was a little too far away from you.”
She smiles and comes to sit on the edge of my bed. I’m propped up against the headboard and move my computer to the mattress beside me.
“Do you think,” I start off hesitantly, and I can see she knows what’s coming by the empathetic look on her face, “that if he knew I was leaving, that would spur him to do something?”
Elena’s expression turns even more sad, and she reaches out to take my hand. “I went to see him.”
“When?” I ask in shocked surprise, my hand clutching hers harder.
“A few days ago,” she says and just stares at me.
I stare right back at her.
Finally, with a tiny wince, she says, “You need to move on, Jorie. It’s not going to happen.”
God, my chest feels like it’s going to cave in the pain hits me so hard. I thought after over a week without Walsh, it would get easier to handle, but this is just as devastating to hear than when he walked away from me.
Immensely more heartbreaking than every text or call he ignored. Because after every one of them, I still had hope. I still had belief he’d come around.
But Elena’s seen him. She’s talked to him.
She’s telling me the truth. Walsh is never coming for me.
“God,” I whisper as I press the palm of my hand into my chest and tears fill my eyes. “Why does this hurt so much?”
“Because you love him,” she says softly. I note she doesn’t tell me that he loves me. Clearly, she didn’t get that from her meeting with him.
I nod in understanding and when I blink, the tears fall.
“Oh, Jorie,” she says in shared misery and opens her arms up. I lean forward and fall into them, putting my head on her shoulder. Staring at my bedroom wall made blurry by the tears falling heavy, I let her hold me.
Finally, I dry up and lift my head. She jumps up from the bed, runs to the bathroom, and returns with a roll of toilet paper. I take off several sheets and dry my face.
The doorbell rings to the apartment and just ten minutes ago, I would have been exhilarated at the thought it was Walsh coming to beg for me back. But I trust Elena and if she told me I need to move on, then that’s not him.
I sit back against the headboard and pull my computer back onto my lap.
“I’ll go get that,” she says and then asks, “want to go out tonight for dinner? Tacos and tequila?”
I give her a watery smile. “Sure.”
Elena leaves, pulling my bedroom door shut behind me. I look back to the website for The Miami Herald, trying to navigate to a section that contains contact information for job applications.
A soft knock on my door causes my head to snap up, and then I’m utterly floored when I see Vince standing there with just his head pushing through. “Can I come in?”
“Um… yeah,” I say in bewilderment. “But what are you doing here?”
Vince walks in and shuts the door. He looks at me silently a moment, keenly taking in my red eyes and blotchy skin before he says, “I was worried about you. You haven’t been responding to me this past week. Not even a ‘go to hell, Vince’.”
I give him a small smile and move over so he can come sit on the edge of the bed. He takes a seat with casual ease, and I take a second to appreciate how handsome my husband is. Sandy-blond hair worn in a business cut, face always cleanly shaven. He’s wearing my favorite cologne and dressed casually in shorts and a polo shirt.
“You didn’t have to come here,” I tell him.
“You’re clearly having a tough time,” he returns softly. “And you’re my wife. I love you. Of course I had to come and check on you, even if I’m part of that hard time.”
“Is your heart broken, Jorie?” he asks me simply.
I nod, unable to voice the words because my throat is clogged. The tears in my eyes speak volumes and Vince’s face turns sad and empathetic all at once.
“It’s not me who broke your heart though?” he asks.
I blink hard, wipe my face with more toilet paper, and give a little cough. “You did break my heart. But I fell for someone, and it got broken again.”
I can tell he’s being careful with his words and he’s genuinely curious, if not a little hurt when he asks, “Not to doubt your feelings, but how did you fall for someone that fast? In just a matter of weeks.”
“It’s Walsh.” It takes him a moment to understand who I mean.