I'm having a Black Friday Sale on Catch Me. Long story short, I wanted to give those that bought the book before today a little something that the people buying and reading because of this sale won't get. I'll probably be taking this down at some point, so I hope you guys read it soon. This is written from Nick's POV (I'm sure you can guess what scene this is ;)).
WARNING: THIS IS NOT EDITED
I stare at the door waiting as my rage continues to bubble, waiting for permission to finally topple over. When the door doesn’t open back up, I finally let out a frustrated growl. My eyes sweep over the suite and land on the champagne flutes we drank from the previous night, the silver Ace of Spades bottle stares back, mocking me for being so stupid. For going after her, getting her, and letting her in.
She hurt me by leaving but I’ve always known that somebody with the amount of pain that Brooklyn carries has the power to break any man, even one as whole as me. And I’d let her. Gladly. I’d give her the knife all over again and ask her to try her best. As long as she gives herself to me and treats me the way she does, laughs and jokes with me, listens to me, and looks at me the way she does, I’d let her.
My eyes dart from the champagne bottle to the flutes beside it, one still has her painted lips on it, the sight of it reminding me of the lips no longer here for me to kiss, and it pisses me off even more. I go over everything I said to her, everything she said to me.
I wanted you to be different.
I fucking hate that she said that, I hate that she thinks I’m not, I hate that I didn’t make it a point to run after her and prove it to her.
The words rattle and echo inside my head.
I wanted you to be different.
Different from who? Shea? Her mother? Her father? Her brother? Who? The ex-boyfriends that never gave a damn to show her her worth? What kills me, what gets me the most was how pained she looked as she said those words to me. How distraught she seemed when I confirmed the news about my label. Most of all, her walking away from me. Fuck.
I’m not sure how long I’ve been standing here, processing, before there’s a knock on my door. I let out a breath and pull on my hair as I walk to it, knowing it’s not Brooklyn. If it was she would have opened the door with her key. I see Darius through the peephole and open.
“Sup?” Darius says. “I heard BK left.”
I nod, my jaw clenching, knowing he heard it from Shea, which means Brooklyn contacted him. I know they’re only friends and I have no damn right to feel this way, but right now I hate that she talks to him. Right now I hate that it’s him she turns to when times get rough. As much as I feel like grabbing her and shaking sense into her right now, as much as I want to hate her for leaving me like that, hurting me like that, I want to find her and tie her to me.
Darius looks at me, his eyes asking me for an answer I’m not going to give. Finally he shrugs, “Shea wants to talk to you.”
I turn around, letting the door close as I walk to the room for a shirt. I look at the bed and close my eyes in remembrance of what was shared in those rumpled sheets. Had I known last night would be the last time I was going to have her, I would have made it last longer. I wouldn’t have gone to the studio after she fell asleep. I would have stayed here, worshiping every inch of her. I would have hugged her tight, made her talk to me longer about anything, everything.
Pulling the T-shirt over my head, I grab a Giants hat and place it over my head backwards before walking to Shea’s room. My mind is blank as I walk through the halls, I don’t want to think anymore, I just want to know what he wants to do about the tracks we have left to record. I want to get lost in beats and melodies for a while.
“Whaddup, Shadow?” Shea says from the couch. I walk over to him and notice his arm draped over Gia, who looks over at me with the same flirty smile she always has on her face.
“Hey, Nick,” Stephanie coos from the other couch. I step further into the room and look at her in surprise. I figured she would come by at some point when Gia arrived since she does her make up, but I thought after the conversation we had the other day she would chill. Apparently I was wrong. Stephanie is a pretty well known make up artist and is always around, going to the same events I frequent. We both grew up here in San Fran and after meeting at a couple of events and bumping into each other at local bars, we started to hook up. She’s cool, but one of those “cool for now” type girls. Not the ones you keep around for good. Not like Brooklyn.
“Hey, Steph,” I say. “Gia,” I greet with a nod. Stephanie shuffles to her feet quickly and runs her fingers through her long blonde hair. She pouts her lips to create that duck face that women think is hot, she looks like a moron, but I’m not going to tell her that. When she reaches me, she wraps her arms around my neck and I stiffen as she leans up. I’m assuming she notices from my body language that this isn’t going to happen, because instead of kissing my lips, she brushes my chin, and even that I wish she wouldn’t do.
“I heard Brooklyn left,” Steph says in a seductive voice as she presses her breasts against my chest. I close my eyes as she says that name and finally step away from her.
“You wanted to talk?” I ask, my question directed at Shea.
He nods for me to sit in the empty seat beside him, so I do.
“Dude,” Shea says quietly as he leans toward me. “How was BK when she left? Was she crying? Was she mad?”
Steph walks over and perches herself on the armrest of my chair, obviously not caring that this is supposed to be a semi-private conversation.
I shoot him a confused look. “She was pissed. I guess I should’ve expected that though,” I answer with a shrug. I hadn’t told her about the label because there’s not much to tell. Right now it’s just a dream. Until I don’t sign somebody under it, that’s all it will be. I should have told her, but when I thought about doing it she would talk about work or say something that made me realize the way she’s been used all her life. I didn’t want her to think that’s why I was with her. I didn’t want her to see me like the others. I am different, I just wanted her to see that for herself. I ignore Steph’s hands rubbing over my arm as I wait for his response.
Shea scoffs. “Fuck yeah she was pissed. Hell, I’m pissed. I want to choke that bitch for doing this to her.”
I blink rapidly. “What? What bitch?” I ask, scooting up in the seat and leaning closer to Shea. I’m trying to get away from Steph’s probing hands, but she doesn’t let up. She slides into the couch and straddles my body from behind instead. Shea rolls his eyes at the sight of her legs around me.
“Allie,” Shea continues. “Her friend, the one helping her out with the microphones.”
“What about her? What’d she do?” I ask, my knee bouncing up and down on its own accord. Steph wraps her arms around me and begins to place open mouthed kisses on the back of my neck. Her hands on foreign on me, her mouth unwelcome, and disgusts builds in the pit of my stomach at having her on me while I discuss Brooklyn.
“Stephanie, get the fuck off me, please,” I demand through gritted teeth. She groans and scuffles to her feet. I hear her ask Gia something before they both walk out of the room. Shea’s chuckle brings my face back to his.
“You’re killing me, man,” I say, scrubbing my face with both hands.
“Allie is suing Brooklyn,” Shea says before explaining the little he knows about the situation. Pieces of the puzzle begin to slide together, Brooklyn’s packed bag, her sudden need to leave, it wasn’t just because she thought I betrayed her, it was this. She wasn’t walking away from me, she was just leaving to take care of this. I close my eyes, feeling like a fucking idiot for so many reasons. Fuck. Now I feel like a complete scum because I know that from her perspective, after just finding out that her best friend was suing her, she came to me. TO ME. And I let her down as well. Panic begins to spread through me. Pure fucking panic. I sit on my hands as they begin to shake, wondering who she’s going to turn to now, remembering how she told me that Isaac was her only reason for not jumping. Even though Brooklyn has matured and has more people for her now, it kills me to think that I’m no longer one of them. Yesterday she had the light in her eyes when she looked at me. Yesterday I was the one she talked to about anything. Today, in just mere hours I’m nobody. Being nobody to Brooklyn is not something I’m okay with.
“Have you spoken to her?” I ask.
“She text messaged me telling me she was leaving. She’ll probably send another when she lands. I can’t believe she didn’t tell you any of this,” he muses quietly. “I thought you guys…”
“We are. It’s complicated,” I say, unwilling to let this go. I explain to him what happened and watch the expression on his face go from amused to shock and settles on anger.
“You fucking made her believe you were using her! Are you fucking stupid?” Shea shouts.
“Look who’s talking,” I spit back. “You used her for YEARS!”
He narrows his eyes. “I didn’t use her. No matter what she’s created in that head of hers, I never used her. If anything we used each other. God, we were so stupid.”
“You fucked her less than a year ago!” I say, surprised to find how much more it hurts when I verbally acknowledge it.
He flinches. “Yeah…a mistake, obviously.” He picks up a rolled up joint from the table, offering it to me first. He shrugs when I refuse and places it in his mouth, taking a long drag as he lights it. “I fucked up with that girl so many times, Shadow, but still we remained friends…you know why?”
“Because you’re a fucking asshole and you can’t see that she’s so much more than one of your groupies?”
Shea laughs, shaking his head as he exhales. “That too, but no. It’s the craziest shit, when you see something you can no longer have. It’s like all of a sudden you want it that much more, just because. When I saw you together and I saw the way her eyes lit up, I missed her. I missed that. But after my concert it dawned on me…I haven’t seen her look that way since we were sixteen. Sixteen, man. Before Ryan died, before she…” he clears his throat. “It’s just been a long time and it makes me feel guilty. It makes me realize that while I’m off on tour, she’s home…alone. And then you come along and change that and I try to take that from you. I loved her once. I still love her, just not like that. We’re one in the same, I think.”
I lean back in my chair and nod in agreement. They are, essentially. They’re both sad, both lonely souls.
“We’re not meant to be, BK and I,” Shea continues as the marijuana taking effect. His eyes are drooping, he seems more relaxed now, philosophical Shea coming out. This is how he looks when he writes music, this is how he works best. “She needs someone like you in her life. You’re a good dude,” he says.
“Not good enough for her,” I mumble, really wanting to say “not good enough for her right now, but I’m willing to be the best for her. Everything for her because I refuse to stand by and watch somebody else step in and have her.”
Shea smiles and points at me with his joint. “And that’s how I know you’re good for her. You know her worth. You see it.” He shrugs and lays his head back, closing his eyes and I know he’s right. There’s something about Brooklyn that sings to me, the way she looks at me, the way we are together, everything about her make me feel complete. I need to call her and tell her that I fucked up.