We Took the Fall

00: Too Much, Too Soon


The word rung in Catalina’s ears as she sat at the small dining table, her blue eyes peeking down at her feet. She had heard murmurs, her father had even asked if she knew anything, but listening to him say it hurt. It hurt more than she had anticipated that it would. She had thought that the moment would come one day, Fernando had always been destined to get picked up by one of Europe’s bigger clubs, but she couldn’t quite wrap her head around the fact that it was happening. She’d thought he’d been around for a few more years before another club appeared to request his services.

“Lina?” Fernando mused as he ducked his head, trying to meet her eyes. “Lina, don’t you have something to say?” he posed, the slightest of smiles on his face. He was excited, the move to Liverpool was a good opportunity for him, and he was a little perturbed by Catalina’s reaction. He’d thought she’d be as excited as he was.

Catalina licked her lips before she lifted her head, her words dying on her tongue as she spotted the hopeful look on his face. He looked excited, it was written all over his face, and Catalina didn’t have it in her to bring him down. It was his dream after all, and she wasn’t going to be the reason that he stopped being so excited. She kind of liked the smile he wore. “I’m happy for you, Nando” she mused, her voice wavering slightly “Liverpool are a brilliant side and I am sure you’ll be a hit over there. The premier league could do with some new talent” she added, chewing the side of her lip.

Fernando smiled gently at the compliment before he spied the look on his girlfriend’s face, something which made him tilt his head to one side, a small frown forming on his lips. He’d thought that she would be happy for him, for months he had been hoping that he would make his move away from Atletico to somewhere bigger, but just one look at her face told him that he was wrong. Catalina didn’t look happy, she looked upset, and he couldn’t help but wonder what that meant for them. Part of him had hoped that she would make the move with him to Liverpool. “Lina” he whispered, reaching for her hand.

Catalina shook her head. “I really am happy for you, Nando” she murmured, sniffing a little “You deserve this” she added.

Fernando sighed gently. “Why do get the feeling that I am not going to be so happy in a little while?” he posed softly, his eyes studying her face closely.

Catalina brushed her blonde hair out of her eyes and sighed, once more guiding her stare down to her feet. “Nando, I am not going to tell you not to go, I know that you have worked hard to get there and I would love it if you could make it in England. You’re a fantastic footballer and you know I want nothing more than for you to succeed…”

“But?” Fernando interjected, his hand still gripping hers.

Catalina swallowed. “But I don’t know if I could handle being in a long distance relationship” she admitted softly.

Fernando shook his head. “It wouldn’t be long distance” he refuted “I came here tonight to tell you two things. Lina, I am moving to Liverpool and I was kind of hoping you would come with me. We’ve been together a while now and I was thinking that we should take the next step. I want you to come with me, Lina, to Liverpool, and I want us to live together” he enthused, his smile appearing once more. It was a step he had been thinking about for a while, asking his girlfriend of almost 2 years to move in with him, and he couldn’t think of a better time to propose the idea. The move to Liverpool provided him with the chance and he wasn’t about to let it go to waste, he loved Catalina and wanted to start taking things further.

Catalina shifted in her seat, her teeth once more nibbling on the pale pink flesh of her lip. It was tempting, part of her was as willing as he was to take the next step in their relationship, but the rational side of her told her that it was too much too soon. She was only 21, Fernando was the first real boyfriend that she had ever had, and part of her didn’t want to be tied down so soon, even if she did see a future with Fernando, she’d hoped that she would be a little older before they started to make decisions like moving into together or getting married. “Nando…”

Fernando noted the tone in Catalina’s voice and shook his head. “You don’t have to say it, Lina” he mumbled “It was a stupid idea anyway” he added, shaking his head.

Catalina shook her head and leant forwards, her smaller hands gently resting against his cheeks. “It was not a stupid idea, querida” she murmured, her eyes staring into his tearfully “And if you were staying in Madrid, it would definitely be something that I would consider, but Nando, I am 21 years old. I don’t quite know if I am ready to leave everything I have ever known behind in order to follow you. I love you, Fernando, you know that I do, but it…it might be a step too far for me right now” she whispered, her voice quaking a little. It hurt, the idea that that conversation was likely to be the last she had with him, but she didn’t want to break down or cry. It was her choice, her decision to stay behind, and she didn’t want to make a scene. It was selfish of her.

Fernando shook his head. “Lina, please, I know that we’re still young and that this might be quick, but we could do it on a trial basis. I don’t have to leave for Liverpool for a few more days and I would like it if you could take that time to think about it. We could give it a month, and if you’re not happy, you could come back home and at least then we could say that we tried” he whispered gently.

Catalina sniffed. “Nando, I…I don’t know if that is such a good idea” she murmured.


“Nando, I think this is too much for me right now” Catalina interjected, shaking her head softly “I love you, I really do, but I just don’t know if I am ready for this. I am so sorry” she whispered, moving to stand up “I hope things work out for you, Nando” she murmured as she stepped a little closer to him, pressing a light kiss to his forehead. Fernando sniffed at the touch before he lifted his head, gently placing a kiss against her lips.

“I hope you can be happy, Lina” he whispered as he pulled away from her, gently brushing the blonde hair out of her eyes “I hope you find what you deserve” he added, offering her a small smile.

Catalina returned it feebly before she pulled him into a tight hug, gently crying into the material of his shirt for a few seconds before he willed himself away, leaving her alone.