I hung up once I got the familiar voicemail for the millionth time. I’d been calling Evie for weeks, but she wasn’t picking up. I could kick myself for being so stupid to let her go without talking to her. I’d gone by her house a few times, but she either really wasn’t home or she was hiding from me. She wasn’t opening the door anyway.
I got up to have some leftover eggs for breakfast. The truth was, I missed her. A lot. A lot more than I’d thought I would. I’d never been the relationship-type, but ever since that night, I hadn’t even thought about other women. Nobody had ever made me feel the way that Evie did. So loved, so special, so right. And now I’d driven her away… It was my own stupid fault.
Although I still couldn’t figure out what had gone wrong. She was openly flirting with me in the Blue Velvet, she definitely didn’t seem to have any issues with me kissing her, or any of the other stuff we did that night. But the next morning… Her last words kept playing over and over again in my head. “I’m just one of your groupies…” Was that what she thought? That I’d slept with her, and now I’d never want to speak to her again, because I’d gotten what I wanted?
Of course, I couldn’t blame her for thinking that. That was how I usually treated the girls I went home with. But not Evie. She was my friend, and I… I thought I might love her as more than just a friend.
Frustrated, I decided to work on some new songs. If love wasn’t going well for me, maybe my career would.
I stood in front of the painting, not even really seeing it. Ever since the awkward morning-after with Matt, even my favorite place – the museum – couldn’t cheer me up. I missed my best friend, and I hated myself for screwing up our friendship for falling for his charm. This wasn’t the first time I’d made the mistake of thinking I was special to someone when really, I was nothing more than another one night stand. It hurt even more than the first time.
“Evelynne? Is that you?”
I turned around. “Oh my gosh, Vanessa! I haven’t seen you since graduation!” I hugged my old college roommate. “This is so crazy, what are you doing here?” “Oh, you know, just looking at the new exposition.” We sat down on a bench to chat, but Vanessa’s smile faded as she looked at my face. “What’s wrong, Evie? You look upset.” “Oh…” I flushed. “It’s nothing, really…” “Come on,” she interrupted me, “I know we’ve lost touch but we were best friends in college. I know that face, and I know that something is bothering you. Spill.”
I took a deep breath and started talking. Something in the look on her face made me tell her everything. About meeting Matt, our friendship, the Blue Velvet…
“So, what’s the problem? He sounds great! Attractive, nice, ambitious…”
“I know, but… He’s such a ladies’ man. Every girl he meets falls on her knees for him and he loves it.” I hesitated for a moment. “Remember Brad?”
“Brad? You mean your college boyfriend who became a drummer in that five-seconds-of-fame band and went off on tours during most of your relationship?”
“Exactly. He was my first love, and I honestly thought we’d be together forever. He was so special to me, so wonderful and then… When his band got more fame, and they toured all over the country, he became so caught up in the lifestyle. The drinking, the women. He’d take a different one to the hotel room every night, lying to me about it, making me feel like an idiot for doubting him… Whenever he came home, everything felt perfect. So right. Until he left me again, and I realized… I was nothing to him. Just a girl to use when he couldn’t get his hands on bra-throwing, gold-digging groupies. And then… He broke up with me, because I was too clingy.” I laughed bitterly. “I didn’t even have the guts to dump him. And that’s when I promised myself: Never again. Never fall for the artistic, ambitious, musician-type that all the girls swoon over. I’ll never be the one to change his ways.”
Vanessa took a deep breath. “Listen, Evelynne. I understand that guy broke you heart. But honestly, you’ve got to let it go. Here you have what sounds like a wonderful, sweet guy who’s probably crazy about you, and you’re gonna throw it all away because of what one jerk did to you and your self-esteem? Just go for it, Evie. If you don’t try, you might miss out on something amazing.”
For a while, I sat there, not being able to think of anything to say. Vanessa was right. I knew she was, but I was so scared… I did not want my heart to be ripped apart again.
But then again, maybe Matt wouldn’t break my heart. Maybe this would all turn out to be okay. It was worth a shot, right?