Love Me Until My Heart Stops

27: There’s No Shame In It

Pinning her hair up on the top of her head, Esmé spared a little yawn, her feet leading her onto the coach. It was still a little early, earlier than Esmé was used to in her capacity as Luis Enrique’s personal assistant, but she hadn’t been left with much of a choice. She hadn’t wanted to go, as Enrique’s assistant, she had the option on whether or not she wanted to go and she usually stuck to home games, but when Gerard had caught wind of her desire to stay home, he had been quick to pull out the puppy eyes, something which had made her melt in an instant. They’d been dating for nearly 3 months, 3 months longer than Esmé had ever anticipated that they would survive, and she had to admit that she was pleased with the way things were. She had listened to Ella, since their coffee a few weeks previous, she had exercised a little more caution when it came to Gerard, but she was still pleased with the results. Their relationship was comfortable, it was romantic and cute, and she couldn’t help but get a little swept away with it. A little part of her was already planning a future for them.

“Esmé” Lionel smiled, waving a little “Do you think Romeo could spare his Juliet for a moment?” he noted, gesturing to the spare seat which sat beside him.

Esmé peeked over her shoulder, looking at Gerard who padded along behind her, his headphones over his ears, before she turned back to Lionel, offering him a small smile before she padded towards him. “What can I do for you this morning, Lionel?” she mused as sat fell into the seat at his side.

Lionel smiled at the brunette gently for a moment before he collected his backpack from the floor, pulling out a magazine that Antonella had handed to him that morning. He doubted that it would matter, from what he had seen of Gerard and Esmé, they were firmly in a relationship and there was little that was going to change it, but he didn’t want Esmé finding out another way. Whether it bothered her or not, he wanted her to know. “I know that you’re with Gerard now” he mused, leafing through the pages “And trust me when I say, I am truly happy that the pair of you have one another now, but I thought that you would rather hear this from me than anyone else” he explained as he arrived at the folded down page.

Esmé frowned. “What are you talking about, Leo?” she posed.

Lionel sighed and placed the magazine in her hands, allowing Esmé’s dark eyes to stare down at the picture, her stomach tightening a little. She knew she should have been expecting it, Cesc wasn’t just going to sit around alone for the rest of his life, but that didn’t mean the picture didn’t hurt her. It was the same girl, the girl from his room on the night that had spelt the end of them, and Esmé was sure that it made it a little worse. It made her wonder if it had just been the once as he had claimed.

“Esmé?” Lionel murmured, his dark eyes studying the expression on her face.

“It’s the same girl” she murmured gently.

“The girl from the hotel room?” Lionel pressed.

Esmé nodded her head gently. “I can still see it sometimes, the way she walked over to him, the way she kissed him. I have no doubt in my mind that that is the same girl, Leo” she explained gently.

“Are you OK?” the argentine questioned softly.

Esmé stared at the picture for a second before she nodded her head, gently placing the magazine back in his hand. “He’s entitled to it, Leo” she mused softly as she pushed herself back to her feet “He’s not my boyfriend anymore and that means he can see who he likes. I certainly am and I have no right to make his mind up for him. I am pleased to see that he’s given up on me” she explained softly. It felt a little strange, the idea that Cesc was in an image with his arms around a girl that wasn’t her, but it was just something she was going to have to get used to. They were done with, there was no going back on it, and she knew that Cesc had as much right to start over as she did. She was with Gerard and she had no reason to question Cesc’s choice to move on.

“It’s OK to admit that you’re not OK with it” Lionel noted “I know that Gerard freaked when he first saw a picture of Shakira with someone else” he added.

“It’s just new, Leo” Esmé reasoned as she gripped onto the seat “It’ll take some getting used to, but I’ll be fine” she insisted before she made her way up the aisle of the coach, settling into the seat beside Gerard who looked up at her, slipping his headphones off.

“You know, I thought I had actually lost you” he joked “One second, you were in front of me, and the next you were gone” he quipped.

Esmé shook her head. “You’re oblivious when you’ve got those things on” she smiled, gesturing to the headphones which sat around his neck.

“Where did you get to?” Gerard posed.

“Leo wanted to talk to me, but it’s nothing to worry about. He just wanted me to see the first picture of Cesc and his new girlfriend” she explained softly.

Gerard cocked his eyebrow. “You’re not bothered by it?” he posed gently. He knew that she didn’t like to talk about him, as far as Esmé was concerned, Cesc was nothing more than a past mistake, but he wanted to make sure that she was alright. The first photo of an ex with a new partner stung, no matter how over them you thought you were, and Gerard wanted to make sure that Esmé was OK. He knew from experience that it hurt.

“Should I be?” Esmé posed.

“No, of course not, but it’s a shitty thing. You think you’re not affected by them anymore and then you see the person they replaced you with and it makes you wonder what went wrong” he explained softly, his hand scratching the back of his neck.

“You wondered that when you saw Shakira’s new boyfriend?” she posed.

Gerard nodded his head. “I saw him and wondered ‘why not me?’, but it goes away. There’s no shame in feeling weird about this Esmé” he smiled.

“So you’d not be bothered by me feeling strange about it?” Esmé posed gently.

Gerard shook his head. “He was the most significant boyfriend you’d had before me. I’d be an idiot to not realize that things are going to affect you” he smiled gently as he took her hand, offering it a light squeeze “All I can do is sit here and tell you that you don’t need him anymore. He made his choice and you made yours, and your choice got you me” he grinned.

Esmé smiled a little at the notion and leant over, kissing him gently which earned a few whistles from the others that were around them. Esmé giggled a little and pulled back gently, wiping the hint of pink lipstick she’d left on the corner of his lips. “Gracias” she smiled.

Gerard shook his head. “No thanks needed, querida” he commented “I’d do anything to help you, you know that” he smiled.

Esmé nodded and leant against his shoulder, pleased to have him.
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Thanks to Jayme112234 for the comment :)