Burn Us Down

06: You Just Had To Tell Me

“Gerard?” Olivia called out cautiously as she closed the front door behind herself, her hands anxiously busying themselves with tucking her keys back into the bag which was draped off of her shoulder. She had been sat outside for a little while, despite Gerard’s invitation having come in the early part afternoon, it had still taken her a little while to get up the nerve to head inside once she had pulled her car to a stop, but she had eventually convinced herself to go. They needed to talk, to figure out what was going to happen next between them, they needed to have a conversation, and as hurt as Olivia was, part of her also wanted to just see him. She had grown used to him always being around and whilst she was angry and hurt, part of her just itched to be in the same room as him.

Waiting for his response, she slipped her feet out of her shoes before she shrugged her coat off, hanging it up on the hook she always used.

“Livy?” Gerard’s voice caught her by surprise, causing her to whip her head up, her eyes landing on where he stood in the kitchen doorway, the start of a smile curving up one corner of his lips.

Swallowing slightly, she allowed her eyes to trail up his frame slowly before she shook her head, clearing her throat gently. “I’m sorry I’m a little late” she spluttered out “I know that we said seven” she added, checking her watch to stop herself from staring at him.

Gerard tried to keep his responding shrug light, but Olivia could see the anxiousness in his expression, even despite his smile. “The food’s still a little away from being done” he quipped as he turned around, taking a step back into the kitchen.

Olivia hesitated for a split second before she followed him, taking a seat at the kitchen table.

Gerard watched her out of the corner of his eye, flinching at the momentary hesitation she had before she pulled out a chair, before he turned to look at her, offering out a wine glass towards her wordlessly.

Olivia smiled awkwardly before she shook her head. “Driving” she replied.

Gerard let out a shaky laugh, placing the glass back in the cupboard. “Of course” he mused “I knew that” he added.

Olivia’s eyes softened as the silence stretched out between them, something which was only broken when Gerard pulled out the chair beside her, angling it so that he faced her rather than the table. Grabbing one of his hands in the other, he stared at her for a few moments before he closed his eyes, letting out a quiet exhale. “I should have told you” he said quietly.

Olivia just sat beside him quietly, watching him as he tried to gather his thoughts.

“I just…I thought you’d hate me” Gerard continued uncertainly “And I know how stupid that sounds in light of where we are now, but I didn’t know what state we were going to be after that fight we’d had. I had basically told you that I thought you were just using me as an excuse to plan a wedding, and you’d accused me of being naïve, and said that I hadn’t really given proposing, and what it meant, any thought and I just…I didn’t want to add fuel to the fire. I know how huge a mistake that was, but I just…I just didn’t want you to hate me, Livy, no matter how stupid that sounds now” he explained, letting out a sigh at how clichéd his excuses sounded.

“I don’t hate you” Olivia whispered.

Gerard lifted his eyes to look at her, a sad smile on his face. “I wouldn’t blame you if you did” he replied.

Olivia shook her head. “I’m hurt that you kissed her” she admitted “Of course I am, but it’s more than that. I hate that you didn’t tell me, I hate that Melissa was the one who got to show me the pictures, but what I hate most it the thought of you, going out and doing this, whilst I was here, worrying that you had regrets about asking me to marry you. I know how overexcited I got, how quickly I jumped into planning, and that night…I really thought that you regretted asking me and then I see those pictures and it made me feel like I was right. That you’d probably only asked because it’d spent months almost pestering and that this was your way of…of showing me that it wasn’t really what you wanted” she said, shaking her head softly.

Gerard was stunned into silence for a moment, causing Olivia to shift in her seat, fiddling with the engagement ring which still sat on her finger.

Gerard watched her fingers before he gently reached out, the tip of his forefinger tracing the band of the ring. “It’s what I want” he said quietly.

Olivia just looked at him.

“You dropped hints” Gerard continued, feeling her eyes on him “But you didn’t pester me, Livy. You didn’t hand me a ring brochure and point out which one you wanted me to get. I chose it, myself, because I wanted to ask you. I had this for nearly a year when I asked” he added, tracing the ring again.


“I felt overwhelmed” Gerard’s eyes flashed up to meet hers “You were so sure of what you wanted, and how you wanted it, but that’s no excuse for what I did. I did something so…so stupid and I hate that it’s got you thinking that I didn’t mean this, Livy” he added, lifting her hand so that he could press a kiss to the finger which held the ring.

Olivia closed her eyes at the feel of his lips against her skin, trying, and failing, to stop a couple of tears slipping out of them. “You just had to tell me that” she whispered “All you had to say was ‘Livy, I feel overwhelmed’, and we could have figured it out and not be…be here” she added, lifting her other hand to wipe her eyes.

Gerard turned her hand over, kissing her palm softly. “I’m so sorry, Livy” he whispered as he looked up at her, his blue eyes shining slightly with tears.

Olivia held his stare, her eyes searching his, before she leant forwards, resting her forehead on his.

Gerard’s hand glided into her hair, his fingers weaving through the coppery strands so that he could keep her close.

“It can’t just go back” Olivia whispered “You really hurt me, Gerard” she added.

Gerard brushed his nose against hers as he nodded his head.

“I am still going to go back to Melissa’s” Olivia continued “I don’t know how long for, but it’s where I want to be right now. I just don’t feel…it doesn’t feel like home to me right now” she explained.

Gerard’s expression flinched, but again, he nodded his head.

Olivia’s fingertips traced the line of jaw, relishing the prickle of his beard against her skin, but when Gerard attempted to close the gap between their faces, she moved away, shaking her head gently.

Gerard swallowed as he sat up in his seat, waiting for a second before he lifted his stare back up to her face. Studying it for a moment, he tried to come up with something to say before the timer on the oven sounded, causing him to let out an almost audible sigh of relief as he hurried back to his feet. Flashing Olivia a flustered smile, he moved to scoop up the oven gloves before he moved to pull the food out of the oven, desperate to avoid the look of uncertainty and hurt that was still etched onto Olivia’s features.

Olivia watched him around the kitchen for a moment before she looked back down at her engagement ring on her finger, still unsure of how much longer it would reside there.
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Thanks to Twisted;;Symphony for the comment :)