“Then tell her that and everything will be fine,” Allison says with a laugh. “By the way, Kyle will be here for dinner, is that alright?”
“It’s fine,” I assure her. “I expected it.” I hesitate. “Is he mad at me?”
“A little,” Allison admits. “Just don’t tell him what you told me, and everything will be fine.”
I grimace. Yeah, there’s no way I’ll tell Grant’s tough, tall, protective best friend that I dumped him and now want to get back together with him. He’s probably angry enough over the situation as it is.
I’m glad, though, that it doesn’t seem to have caused any problems between Kyle and Allison. Then I remember that they’ve already been through a lot worse than this. My problems aren’t going to be enough to tear them apart.
I glance at Allison. In a way, knowing how bad her relationship with Kyle was in the beginning, I have a little hope. If Grant and I can come out the other end of this, will we be just as strong for it? I don’t know, but there’s a large part of me that hopes so.
The smaller part of me, the more logical part, reminds me that our situations are entirely different, and it’s unlikely that Grant is as forgiving as Kyle.
I’m pulled out of my thoughts when I hear the front door open. Kyle enters the apartment, sighing when he notices a few books on the floor, and bends over to pick them up.
“Sorry!” Allison says with a wince. “I meant to pick them up.”
“Yeah, yeah,” Kyle says, rolling his eyes.
He nods to me as he passes, unsurprised to see me, and enters the kitchen to drop a quick kiss on Allison’s waiting lips. Then he turns around and looks at me.
“Allison told me you’re staying the night,” he says.
“Yeah,” I admit. “My head has been little…twisted lately. I just need some time to myself.”
“That’s fine,” Kyle says. He crosses his arms. “Don’t you have somewhere else to be, though?”
I stare at him, not understanding.
“Kyle!” Allison says, shocked.
“Sorry, Allison,” Kyle says. His expression is stern. “I get it, Jessica. You’re overwhelmed with everything, and you need somewhere to hide out. But hiding isn’t going to help you. And you’re not the only one overwhelmed.”
It feels like all the wind has been knocked out of me at once.
He’s right. I’ve just spent the last hour or so whining to Allison because I still have feelings for the man I broke up with. I made a token effort, on Tuesday, to speak to him, and got discouraged when he shot me down, resolving to walk away and give him what he wants. Other than that, I’ve made no attempt to solve a situation that I created.
Is that really all Grant means to me? A small effort and a huffy protest when he does the right thing and finally tries to protect himself from me? Was I really going to go home tomorrow and let things go, which will force Grant and I to spiral in a circle of bitterness and unsaid resentment until we can’t take it anymore?
I owe Grant far more than that.
“I don’t know what to do,” I admit.
Funny how I went to Allison for advice, and ended up with somewhere safe. Now Kyle, however, is standing in front of me and telling me what I need to hear.
And Allison knows it too. She’s standing back, her eyes flicking between Kyle and I. She’s biting her lower lip, but she isn’t interrupting, a conflicted look on her face. These are the things she wanted to say to me, but didn’t because she didn’t want to kick me when I was already down.
“Isn’t it obvious,” Kyle snorts. He shrugs. “You should probably eat dinner before you go.”
“Go?” My chest feels tight. “Go where?”
But I already know the answer.
Kyle glances at me. “You aren’t going?”
I glance at Allison. She meets my eyes and grimaces. Her expression makes it clear that this is my decision. Even Kyle hasn’t specifically told me that I have to go.