The Space Between Us

81: I Learned That From You

Amelia didn’t know what it was that finally caused her to jerk away from Fernando, her eyes wide in shock. For a moment, a long one, she had been lost in the familiarity of his kiss. She had lost herself in the memories that she had of him, the good ones that she had cherished before she had known anything about Gianna or Penelope, and it meant that it took longer than it ought to have done for thoughts of Lionel to permeate the haze, but when they did, Amelia’s reaction was immediate. Her hand moved to Fernando’s chest, holding him in place as she hurried to take a step away from him, her wide eyes staring up at him.

Fernando blinked his eyes open, his expression softening when he saw the expression on Amelia’s face. “Amelia” he said softly.

Amelia took another step away, shaking her head firmly. “I...I need to get out of here” she spluttered.

Fernando matched her step back with one towards her. “I’m sorry” he said “I was just...I just wanted you to know how I feel about you” he added.

The surprise in Amelia’s expression disappeared. In its place, a sharp, bitter expression appeared. “You wanted me to know how you feel about me?” she asked “You don’t care about me, Fernando, not really” she added.


“Why is it so hard for you to just leave me alone?” Amelia snapped “Isn’t it bad enough that you lied to me for years? You had me, Nando, for four years, you had me all to yourself, and you, and you alone, are the reason that you don’t have me any more. No one made you cheat on me with Gianna, no one made you hide Penelope. You did all of that on your own. You broke us, you broke me, and I need you to start getting that through your head. It isn’t going to change. There isn’t anything left here” she added.

Fernando was quiet for a moment before he shook his head. “It didn’t feel like there was nothing here when you kissed me back” he quipped.

Amelia let out an incredulous laugh, but Fernando pushed ahead nevertheless. “Can you really stand there and tell me that you feel absolutely nothing for me?” he pressed “Can you tell me that there is not a single part of you that wishes we could go back and undo the mistakes we made?” he added.

“We made?” Amelia pressed incredulously.

“Stop avoiding the question!” Fernando snapped “Can you really say that you don’t wish we could fix this?” he added, his voice softening to match the vulnerability that had appeared in his eyes.

Amelia’s eyes searched his face, the sharpness on her own features receding, before she slowly shook her head. “I don’t” she whispered.

Fernando blinked owlishly, like he couldn’t understand the words that had come out of her mouth, before he shook his head. “Amelia” he protested.

“I am happy, Nando” Amelia said carefully “I know that that isn’t what you want to hear, but I am” she added.

Fernando blinked again, his vulnerability disappearing. “How happy do you think you’ll be when I tell Leo about our kiss?” he asked.

Amelia’s lips quirked. It was exactly what she had been expecting from him. She knew that there was a part of him that hoped that if he could push her and Lionel apart, then there would be a chance for them. “I am going to tell him anyway” she said “Unlike you, I plan to be completely honest with my partner” she added.

“And you think that he’ll be OK with it?” Fernando pressed.

“I don’t know” Amelia replied “But I hope we will be able to talk through it, and figure things out. I know that no good can come from me not telling him” she added.

Fernando shook his head, scoffing. “Aren’t you just so perfect together?” he sneered.

Amelia shook her head. “I just know what I have, and I know that if I don’t tell him, then I run the risk of letting this stupid secret poison it. I would rather he be mad at me now, and just for one stupid mistake, then to hide it, and let it grow into a million mistakes I can’t fix. I learned that from watching you destroy our marriage. If you had just been up front with me, owned up to one single mistake instead of working so hard to cover it all up, then maybe things would be different” she explained.

“Because you’d have forgiven me for cheating on you?” Fernando’s voice was incredulous.

Amelia’s answering shrug was accompanied by a small, wistful smile. “I think you’d have been surprised by what I would have forgiven” she said “For a while, I was stupidly in love with you. You either didn’t see it, or didn’t care enough to notice” she added.

Fernando didn’t say anything. There was very little he could say.

Amelia shook her head, the smile disappearing from her face. “I am going to go” she said.

“Are you going to tell Nora what happened?” Fernando asked “Because I think this might finally give her the excuse she needs to stop me from hanging out with Victor” he added.

“You don’t think that you’ve done worse?” Amelia’s voice was caught between incredulous and impish.

Fernando’s answering smile was rueful. “Fair point” he said.

“Victor loves you like a brother” Amelia pointed out “He’s not going anywhere. I am, though. I used to think that we were capable of putting the us stuff to the side so we didn’t put Nora and Victor in the middle, but I don’t think that we are capable of that any more, so I am going to take a step back. It makes sense, I live in Paris after all, at least I do right now” she added, letting out a feeble laugh in a weak attempt to disguise her sadness.

Fernando just stared at her, something which caused her lips to quirk slightly. It was no surprise to her that he hadn’t protested. Fernando had always been, and probably always would be, selfish. Shaking her head, she turned and walked away from him, slipping out of the party venue before she felt the vibrations of her phone in her bag, something which caused her to squeeze her eyes closed, already knowing who would be on the other end of the call, and knowing that there was a very real chance that the next time she spoke to Lionel could be the last time that she spoke to him.