Status: New

A Day at a Time

Eight

It's been about a week since Charlie had seen Gerald last. She had woken up the next morning on her balcony alone. She didn't really mind that he had left without a word. A part of her appreciated the silence and a moment to herself. Gerald was overwhelming, to some extent. His lifestyle was unlike her own completely and to be honest, something about him attracted her.
Charlie isn't a woman who believes she can change a man and Gerald certainly is not one to be tamed.
In Gerald's absence, she has had more time to focus on the real reason she had traveled across the country to begin. During the past week, she had been able to attend her mother's appointments, spend time with her family, and she had been keeping busy at the hospital.
Today is Charlie's day off, she had just pulled four night shifts in a row and now wants nothing more than to be surrounded by friends. She had planned a game night with Alex and Jack and had invited her sister, as well. Everyone is showing up soon and Charlie had been cleaning when she heard a knock on her door.
She had not been ready for anyone to come just yet, her apartment had been a mess because the night shifts left her exhausted.
When Charlie opens the door, she finds Gerald on the other side. Leaning against the frame, in his leather jacket and black everything - typical. She opens the door, letting him walk past her into the apartment.
"You could have called, you know," She comments walking back into the apartment.
Gerald gets comfortable sitting on the edge of her bed, "If I called, you could've said no."
"And what would I have said no to?"
"Coming out with me tonight," He smirks at her, grabbing her hand and pulling her to him.
She shakes her hand out of his grip and sits beside him on the bed, crossing her legs. "Well, I guess you'd like to be disappointed in person?"
He tilts his head, a frown wrinkles the corner of his mouth, "You're talking crazy."
A small laugh escapes, Charlie's lips, "Sorry, Gerald. I have guests coming and you should go, I have to finish cleaning."
Charlie gets up from her bed, continuing to pick up. Gerald sighs, falling back onto the bed dramatically.
"It's my last day home for a while, I want to chill with you."
She laughs, "Don't be a child. You can stay but I have friends coming over. Please don't embarrass me."
It's almost an hour later when Alex and Jack arrive, showing up with games and pizza. Alex does not seem the least bit surprised when she sees Gerald smoking a blunt on Charlie's balcony. Jack, on the other hand, is ecstatic when he catches sight of Gerald. When Jack excuses himself to go meet Gerald Alex smirks over at Charlie, elbowing her in the ribs, "I've seen him here a few times now. Is this a thing?"
Charlie smiles, watching from inside as Jack bombards Gerald with questions about himself, "This is definitely not 'a thing'. I can't get rid of him, he keeps showing up."
"I caught him sneaking out early morning last week. Are you sleeping together?"
"We haven't slept together. We haven't done anything, it's not like that. We're friends, I guess."
"You guess?"
"I mean, I'm not looking for anything. Definitely not anything like him."
Alex shrugs, "All right, I got you. I'm going to go stop Jack before he drives G away."
Charlie observes from the kitchen, watching as Gerald interacts with Jack. He seems unbothered by Jack's questions. She's sure he's used to situations such as this.
The games begin when Melissa arrives at the apartment. Charlie is quick to introduce everyone and Melissa seems to get along with them well.
Alex brought over Pictionary. Gerald is the absolute worst, Charlies absolutely regrets letting him stay. "You're making us lose," She whines at him, "I don't understand any of your drawings."
"What do you not get about this," He questions holding up his drawing again for everyone to see, "It's an opera singer. How can you not tell, I think I captured her giant skirt and huge boobs perfectly."
Everyone laughs, Alex and Jack are not mad because they are winning by far. Melissa keeps reminding Charlie that it's just a game.
Melissa, Charlie, and Gerald squeeze onto the loveseat, leaving Alex and Jack across from them on the bed. When Gerald sits down after his turn he drapes his arm across Charlie's shoulder. Alex and Melissa both glance over at her but she ignores their glances.
"Jack, you're up."
It's 11 o'clock when they had finished their game, everyone besides Gerald had left. Charlie pouts, they had lost substantially.
"You're a sore loser," He acknowledges, smiling down at her.
"That's because I don't lose," She rolls her eyes, pushing him slightly away from her.
Gerald grabs her waist and suddenly she's a lot closer to him than she had anticipated. There's no point when she moves to look up at him because his lips are on hers immediately. It's softer than she would have expected. Everything he does is so fast but not this. There's hesitancy in it as if he's unsure.
If Charlie was ever unsure, she's not now. For as long as she had denied the attraction, it was always there. And he's leaving, so who really cares?
She grabs his neck, pulling him down closer to her as their lips detach. His lips quickly find their way to her neck and that's it for her, she's doing this.