I stopped by a flower shop on the way to her house and picked up a dozen roses. I figured if she was mad at me for anything, the roses would help to butter her up. And if she wasn’t mad about anything, it was still a good gesture to give her flowers. She was beautiful and she deserved them, anyway.
I drove over to her apartment, I checked the parking lot and saw that her car was in the drive way. I pulled out my phone and dialed her number again. It went straight to voicemail. I sighed, put my phone in my pocket, and stepped out of the car. I walked up to the apartment, checking the windows for any signs of life. I didn’t see any. I knocked on the door and waited to see if I could hear anything. The door swung open and I stood face-to-face with Candy.
“Uh, hey,” she said, nonchalantly, looking everywhere but in my eyes.
“Hey, these are for you,” I said, thrusting the flowers toward her. She beamed.
“Oh my gosh, these are beautiful,” she said, gathering the roses in her arms and hugging them like they were a long lost friend. “Thank you.”
“You’re welcome,” I said. “I’ve been trying to get in touch with you…”
“Yeah, I know,” she said interrupting me. “I’ve just been – there’s a lot going on with me right now. I just need some time to think. I need to concentrate on my business. I’ve been neglecting that. And I’m trying to expand right now. I… can’t really do that and get ahead if my head’s in the clouds with you.”
I felt like someone had kicked me in the chest. I didn’t even know how to respond to that.
So I didn’t. I turned and I walked away.
Was this seriously over before it had ever had the chance to get off the ground?
This must be what heart break felt like. I felt shattered, used.
I didn’t want to feel it. I didn’t want to feel anything.
I knew one way to change my mood and get me out of a funk: partying.
I didn’t think that I would go back to my old partying ways, but I was so upset, I was willing to try anything.
I took out my phone and dialed Rich’s number.
“Hey, Rich, let’s go party tonight.”
I was back with a vengeance.
A few days had passed since I had talked to Elliot and things with the bakery were back on track. I had thrown myself into my work full-time again and there was something that felt good about being back in my element.
“Someone must be feeling really good,” said my assistant when I walked in. “To what do we owe the honor?”
I laughed and waved her away.
“I’m just doing what I used to do when I first started the business. I had gotten away from it for a while, but that won’t happen again. I’m back, focused and better than ever.”
It felt really good to be back focused on work, but I had to admit that it was hard to really be focused on anything other than Elliot. It was a large part of the reason why I had thrown myself so hard back into work: I needed an excuse to get him out of my head. It wasn’t working, though.
The truth was that I was heartbroken. I know that it was me who ultimately made the decision to end things, but a part of me kept wondering if I hadn’t made a mistake in ending it so quickly. But, it didn’t really matter anymore. I was sure that it was too late and now I’d blown my chances with him. I frowned at the thought of having lost someone so wonderful.
My thoughts were interrupted when the door burst open. It was Tammy.
“What are you doing here?” I asked, not bothering to hide my surprise.
“I came as soon as I heard the news,” she said, out of breath. “The investor that wants to building is about to buy it. Not only that, he’s going to demolish it once he buys it and use it for something else.”
My heart sank. I felt like if this building sold from under me, it would take me years to realize my expansion dreams, if I ever would.
“What can we do?” I asked, starting to feel hopeless.
“Well, the first thing we need to do is go down to the real estate office and try to fight for the building,” she said. “You came up with a really good idea for us to team up. I think that now would be a great time for us to come together on this.”
“I agree,” I said. “There’s always strength in numbers. Plus, I like the way that you operate your business, so you would be a great business partner to have.”