Until You Met Me

Eighty Four

Tugging a blanket over her head, Molly curled up on her side, shielding her eyes from the early morning sunshine that slipped through Albert’s blinds. It had caught her off guard. When the bright light had hit her face, she had been momentarily disorientated, forgetting that she had spent the night on her friend’s sofa, but when she had cracked an eye open and looked around, everything had come rushing back to her, leading to her curling against her pillow, trying in vain to swallow past the lump in her throat.

It had taken her a long time to get it off of her mind. After Albert had left her alone, and she had listened to Gerard’s message, she had spent hours tossing and turning, trying to fall asleep, but the few hours of sleep she had managed to get didn’t seem to have done any good. She hadn’t forgotten what had happened. Gerard’s admission still rung in her ears, and her eyes still stung with the tears that had burned them the moment the words had fallen out of his mouth, and she doubted that it was going to stop any time soon. As hard as she tried, she couldn’t wrap her head around what had happened, or how it could have possibly come about.

Squeezing her eyes closed, she took in a couple of deep breaths, trying to stave off the urge to cry again before she felt the blanket being pried out of her fingers. Pushing herself up, she prepared to apologise to Albert, only for the words to die on the tip of her tongue as she looked up at Sofia. Blinking a couple of times, she glanced past Sofia towards Albert who stood in the doorway, an apologetic expression on his face. “She was worried” he said.

Molly exhaled a quiet sigh, pushing a hand back through her messy hair. “She called you?” she asked.

Albert nodded. “I’ll leave the two of you to it” he said “Coffee’s in the cupboard by the fridge” he added before he stepped out of the room.

Molly stared at the empty doorway for a beat before she turned in her seat, creating a spot next to her that Sofia was quick to fill, pulling the blanket that was in Molly’s lap across hers too. For a second, they both sat in silence. Molly was desperate not to start the conversation, and Sofia didn’t want to push her, but once it became clear that Molly wasn’t going to say a word without some kind of coaxing, she sighed. Finding Molly’s hand amongst the blankets, Sofia weaved their fingers together, squeezing it softly. “Your fiance is worried about you” she said gently.

Molly ducked her head, using her other hand to tuck her hair behind her ear. “He called you?” she asked.

Sofia nodded. “He asked if I had seen you” she mused “He said you’d had a fight, and he couldn’t get a hold of you. He wondered if I knew where you might be” she added.

“How quickly did you figure out I was here?” Molly asked.

“I figured he’d already checked with everyone else” Sofia replied “Albert was the only other person I could think of” she added.

“I just wanted to go somewhere where I’d be given the chance to think” Molly said “I love you, and my parents, and Pop, but if I showed up at your place or theirs like I showed up here...” she trailed off when Sofia squeezed her hand, wordlessly reassuring her that it was fine.

Taking in a deep breath, Molly let it out slowly before she looked up at Sofia. “Ava kissed him” she whispered.

Sofia flinched a little, but the expression on her face wasn’t completely surprised, something which caused Molly’s eyes to widen, a new film of tears filling them. “You...You knew that she…?” she spluttered.

Sofia shook her head firmly. “I didn’t know anything” she insisted “I just...I remember her talking about a guy once. She said that it was complicated, that there was a chance he had feelings for another a girl, but the other girl was with someone else. I told her that it probably wasn’t worth it. I didn’t think anything more of it, but when you said that she had...it makes a lot of things make a little more sense” she added.

“You think this is why she was trying so hard to persuade me against marrying him?” Molly asked.

Sofia nodded wordlessly.

Molly stared down at her lap, allowing a beat of quiet to pass, before she glanced back up at Sofia. “How’d he sound?” she asked “Gerard. How’d he sound when he called you?” she added.

Sofia sighed, squeezing Molly’s hand gently. “Honestly?” she asked “He sounded worried, and devastated. He tried his hardest to downplay it when I asked what had happened, but he is a pretty terrible liar” she added, a slightly rueful smile pulling at the corner of her mouth.

Molly let out a sad laugh. “He really is” she mused “Did I ever tell you about the time he came over from England to surprise me?” she asked.

Sofia smiled softly, shaking her head. It was a lie. It was one of Molly’s favourite stories to tell about Gerard, a story that Sofia had heard a million times before, but the gentle smile on Molly’s face dissuaded her from saying anything. If telling the story was something that could make Molly feel better, even if it was just for a moment, it was worth hearing again.

“He gave himself away so easily” Molly mused, a nostalgic smile on her face “All I did was ask what he was up to, and he told this really outrageous lie. It was so obvious that he was trying to hide something. I got it out of him in less than five minutes” she added.

Sofia squeezed Molly’s hand again, something which caused Molly to look up at her, her expression sobering. “What am I supposed to do, Sofi?” she asked softly “This keeps happening. Every time it feels like we’ve really got there, that we’re finally settled, something goes wrong. Someone says the wrong thing, someone’s ex boyfriend starts texting them out of the blue, someone’s best friend kisses someone they shouldn’t. I love him, but I...I don’t know if it is enough of a reason to keep doing this” she murmured.

“You can’t be serious” Sofia said. It was obvious that they were supposed to be together, and a few bumps hadn’t changed it. Sofia had seen the way that they looked at one another.

Molly shrugged, looking back down at the blanket in her lap that she was twisting her fingers in. “Right now, I don’t know if I am serious or not” she replied “I can’t get my head around any of this, Sofi. I have known Ava for over fifteen years. I have been there for her through everything, and I didn’t see that she could have feelings for Gerard. How naïve am I? God, I didn’t even figure out that I had feelings for Gerard. Tiago did, and everyone else around me. Tiago saw it before I did. How do I know that I haven’t got it wrong? How do I know anything?” she added, her voice growing more agitated.

Sofia didn’t even try to say anything. There was no point, not when anything she could have said would have only upset Molly more. Instead, she wrapped her arms around her and hugged her tightly for a moment before she leant back, gently wiping the tears off of Molly’s cheeks. “I’ll go make us some coffee” she murmured “I left a bag of clothes in the hall. They’re nothing special, but I thought you’d want something clean. Why don’t you go and get changed?” she asked.

Molly nodded. “Thanks” she said.

Sofia smiled at her gently, watching her out of the room, before she moved towards her handbag, slipping her phone out. Hesitating for a second, she found Gerard’s number and dialled it, pressing the phone against her ear. “Hey” she said quietly “I am going to give you an address. You need to fix this” she added before she reeled off Albert’s address.

She knew that Molly would be annoyed that she had told him, but it needed to be done. The longer Molly sat alone, thinking, the worse the her doubts would get, and the only person who could stop it was Gerard. He was the only one who had a chance of being able to convince her that she knew what they were.
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Thanks to Twisted;;Symphony for the comment :)