Moving in (Old Draft)
She was pressed against the edge of the breakfast bar, her hands ran through her hair, a nervous motion accompanied by an awkward smile, she laughed, breathless and anxious. “Well-” she paused to clear her throat and swallow, “Listen-” he began, but much like her he hesitated, she let out another breathless laugh “I- well, I think this is what’s best, J.” she said, her voice wobbled but she stood firm, he looked away, down at her hands, the matte black stools lining the bar, anywhere but her eyes. “Right.” he faltered, he felt himself caught, he longed to reach out to her, apologize, do something to make this right. He didn’t.
So that was how it ended, a year of her life wasted, memories came back in, they flooded the senses she stood grounded, she ran her sweaty palms along the formica edge of the breakfast bar, she sighed and tried to calm herself, tears pooled, thick and fresh and stiffling, they stream down her face, her chest constricted she felt as if her body was thrashing but she didn’t move, she stood there a storm contained, half of her walked out the door, not for the first time.
Laughter spills out of J’s mouth, he snorts obnoxious and uncontrollable, of course, this triggers a wheezing fit of giggles in her, “C-Jesus!” he struggled to form words, tears sprung to her eyes, auburn hair unattractively clouding her face, she covered it with her hands and slowly they died down, their cheeks hurt and His face had turned completely red. He picked his laptop back up, sitting on Her bed, they snuggled, pushed against the wall she moved her arm awkwardly proping herself up with a pillow. “You okay, Cam?” he gave her an amused look, she pushed her hair from her face, She grins and nods “Yeah, Push play.” she leans into him, comfortable
Cam walks now, she turns and faces the little cubby she dared to call a kitchen, she blubbered helplessly to herself, wallowing, she looked at the electric tea kettle, she found her reflection, the warped, red image of her was disturbing, she stared at it for a moment too long, her head was pounding.
J mixes a pot of water that had just begun boiling “well don’t be completely useless!” he teases Cam, she leans over and gives him a chaste kiss “that’s still not helping… maybe one more?” she kissed him again, lingering a little, smiling wide, he tasted of wine and stolen ingredients. She broke away when the timer on her phone went off, “Now go chop those veggies, ’kay babe?” she hopped off the counter and walked away from the culinary experiment they were preparing. It was always like this when they cooked, it was nice, she sat on counters and he talked her ear off, or they played music and she’d come up behind him, wrap her arms around his waist, trail her hands up his stomach press herself into his back and just breathe in, deep and soft, leaving an imprint of him in her memory, the feeling of his stupid T-shirts, the smell of him, sandlewood and cinnamon, musk and citronilla but she loved it, she curled into it, retreating into a hazy feeling, happiness.
Cam huffs, she wipes her face, still sullen but better, like some balance was struck between herself and the universe, she straightened out and headed towards her shower. Her bones ached a dull psychological pain that hadn’t been there before, something horrible, lodged deep beneath her skin, her chest was filled with it, this imaginary pain. She stepped inside of the bathtub and lowered herself down, she sat, fully clothed, the tile was shockingly cold. What is it that draws people to their bathroom in times of distress? She slides down, sinking further and further, her head swirled with I could stay here forever. Who would know? Who would miss me? I guess I live alone now. I live alone. Now. She hadn’t lived alone her whole life.
“Okay, so what about this one?” J sat on Cams bed in the blocky little apartment she shared “nah, the kitchens too small for the price of rent.” he murmured, leaning over to look at her screen, her roommate padded into the room, light denim jeans flooded their vision as she came over to the couch they were lounging on, her hair was a tangled mop she slowly brushed through water splattered with every stroke. “I don’t know why you’re apartment hunting now, honestly you have a good gig livin’ with your parents, Jasper.” he sneered at her “you’ve never lived with them, you have no clue, it’s horrible.” he near groaned “well, what about this one?” Camilla forced a phone back into his face, He sighed loudly “I think I’m gonna have to look into finding a roommate.”
“But you don’t have any friends.” Camilla teased “’cept Allie but I doubt she counts as a friend, she’s more your tormentor.” Allison leaned over dramatically whipping her hair forward and brushing it from back to front, Jasper whipped Cam’s phone with his long sleeved shirt, irritated. “I’m sure I could put an ad out “looking for a roommate, no serial killers Please”.” he mused
“Doesn’t sound very promising…”
“It’s just as good as your Idea.” Cam shot Allie a look
“And what was her idea?” he didn’t even look up from her phone, she’d remember that.
“Why don’t you just move in with us? We’ll have the same roommate rules of course but it’d be more cost effective, and we definitely have the room to spare….”
“But we’d totally understand if you don’t want to make that decision was not an option for you right now or if you didn’t want to, you know like that’s a big leap in our relationship and we do live on a kind bad part of town and it’d be kinda far from your job…”
Allison gave her a weird look, and Jasper turned to face her, the same expression spreading across his face, confusion at this sudden spike of anxiety. Do you not want me to live here? Words left unspoken. “I just don’t want to force you into it.” whispers more than words, Allison wandered back a little, pretending to ignore the conversation she had started, quiet as possible she started fidgeting, tediously brushing the same part of her hair over and over again, looking askance. Cam sat up a little straighter, got her bearings and looked into Jasper’s pretty brown eyes “It’s not that I don’t want you to move in, it was my idea, matter of fact but, I don’t want you to be forced to do it, I don’t want you to be.. Pressured.” He placed his hands on top of her knees, and looked her clear in the face, she flushed but didn’t break eye contact, he was just a murmur to her “If you don’t want to do this, love, tell me now.” The words died on her tongue. Two weeks later the relationship followed.