Until You Met Me

Eighty Two

Gerard was careful to close the front door quietly behind himself after he had stepped inside. He knew that Molly was home. After he had left Ava’s office building, he had sent her a text, casually asking if she had made it back without him coming to pick her up, and she had quickly replied, making a joke that had caused the knot in Gerard’s stomach to give a painful twist. He knew that he was, at most, only a few minutes away from watching her face fall, and he couldn’t stop it.

He had thought about not saying anything. Almost the entirety of the journey from Ava’s office back to the house he and Molly shared had been spent flitting back and forth between knowing he had to tell her and wanting to hide it, but each and every time he had changed his mind, he had quickly changed it back. He knew that it couldn’t stay hidden. He knew that the guilt would get to him, or to Ava, and that Molly would find out anyway, and he couldn’t be responsible for making the hurt worse. It was going to sting anyway, but he knew that if he lied, or made an attempt to hide it, it would only devastate Molly more.

Toeing off his shoes, he tidied them away and hung up his jacket before he slowly walked towards the living room. Poking his head around the doorway, he quickly spotted Molly who was curled up on the sofa, happily reading the book that was laid out on the cushions next to her. He was careful not to make a sound for a moment, taking a second to admire her, before he lightly cleared his throat.

Molly looked up at the sound, her face lighting up with a warm smile. “Look who’s home” she chirped “I was kind of expecting you to be here when I got back” she added.

Gerard’s answering shrug was tight, his smile was forced. “Something came up” he said.

If Molly noticed that his voice was off, she didn’t show it as she folded the corner of her page down and placed the book down onto the floor. Sitting up, she made a space for Gerard at her side, offering it to him with a playful roll of her eyes. “Are you just going to stand there?” she quipped.

Gerard didn’t move immediately, but he did eventually make his way over towards the sofa, sinking down a little further away from her than he normally would.

Molly tilted her head at the distance, a small crease appearing between her eyebrows.

Gerard saw the expression on her face before he exhaled a quiet sigh, trying to find some of them the words that he had thought up on the drive home. He didn’t know exactly what to say. There was no good way to tell her, or to soften the blow, but he still wanted to try, even if it was likely to be futile. He didn’t want it to be worse than it had to be. Rubbing his forehead in frustration, he let out a small noise, something which caused Molly to reach out, gently settling her hand on top of the one of his that sat on the sofa between them. “What’s wrong?” she asked.

Gerard stared down at her hand on his before he looked up at her face. “I need to tell you something” he replied.

Molly offered him a lopsided smile. “Tell me then” she chirped “The sooner you say it, the sooner we can go and get ready for dinner with Pop and Felipe” she added.

Gerard didn’t want to say it. He wanted to force a smile, and insist that it could keep until later, but he knew that if he didn’t say it then, then he wouldn’t say it at all. He would always find a reason not to tell her. He hated the idea of her being upset, and he hated the idea of being the reason she was upset, but he couldn’t just leave it, and he knew it. Diverting his stare back down towards the sofa, he gently twined his fingers through hers before he shook his head. “I went to see Ava” he announced.

Molly, who’d been watching his play with her fingers, glanced up at him. “You did what?” she asked.

“I went to Ava’s office” Gerard repeated “I just...I wanted to see if I could talk to her about what happened the other night. I know you’ve been putting on a brave face about it, but...”

“I told you to leave it alone” Molly interjected “I told I would figure it out” she added.

Gerard nodded tightly. “I know” he said “I was just trying to help” he added.

Molly was quiet for a moment, her stare on their hands, before she shook her head, the starts of a smile pulling at the corner of her mouth. “How did that go?” she asked “I can’t imagine that she was all that happy to see you” she added.

Gerard opened and closed his mouth a couple of times, before he shook his head. “Molly” he murmured “Ava...Ava kissed me” he admitted.

The smile that had been threatening to brighten Molly’s face froze for a beat before it slipped away, leaving her staring up at Gerard with wide, confused eyes as the words hung in the air between them. She didn’t know what to do. She didn’t know that she had heard him right, but she couldn’t find her voice to ask and she couldn’t stop the pounding that had filled her ears. Slowly, she slipped her hand out of his and stood up, pacing a few steps away from him.

“Molly?” Gerard prodded softly.

Molly looked over at him. “Ava...my best friend...” she stumbled “You...You and my best friend” she added.

Gerard stood up and stepped towards her, only to stop when Molly held a hand up in front of herself, stopping him from getting too close. Her hand was shaking. “Can I explain?” he asked gently, trying to fight the urge to take her hand. He didn’t have it in him to watch her pull away from him.

Molly shook her head, her eyes glassy with tears.


“I don’t want to hear it right now” Molly interrupted “I...I can’t” she added.

Gerard wanted to insist, he wanted her to know that things might not seem so bad after he’d explained, but the look on Molly’s face stopped him. She looked more devastated than he could have imagined.

“I need to get out of here” Molly announced.

Gerard didn’t object, no matter how much he wanted to.

Molly looked at him for half a second, half expecting him to say something to stop her, before she shook her head and moved past him.

Gerard didn’t move until he heard the front door close and the sound of Molly’s car starting. When he heard the sound of the car leaving the driveway, he numbly padded towards the window, resting his forehead against it as he watched her car disappear from view, potentially signifying the end of the relationship he’d never wanted to end.
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Thanks to Twisted;;Symphony for the comment :)