Regrets of The Past: Part IV
It's Monday and today I'm post the FINAL part of Regrets of The Past. I have a confession to make: The ending has a little twist at the end. If you know me well, you've already figured it out! Anyway I have another short story I may start this week, so you might get part I of IV of that story next Monday. I'm not 100% certain on it quite yet. If I post it, then you'll know.
Recap: Last time we left this story, the protagonist had discovered that things needed to change. A phone call is made to Derrick. Read this to find out what was said and what is to become of their relationship. Was Sheila's advice sound or are things beyond reconciling? I hope you enjoy this final part and leave me lots of comments! :)
In all these years of my life I'd never felt so terrible. It was like I was shaking all over, the anxiety rising ever so steadily. Derrick's voice seemed to break my heart and my response time was delayed over this, but I finally responded, my voice cracking. We talked for a few minutes, exchanged pleasantries and then the conversation was over. I sat in the car for a few minutes longer before I drove off into the setting sun. It was getting a little late now. I hadn't realized how fast time traveled. Though I should have, for things always seemed to pass me by. Sometimes I wish I could stop time, just freeze it and relish in all the good moments I had had in my youth and at the height of my career. I had written little in the last few years, my publishers were angry. I was angry at myself now. I let my sorrow and my discomfort affect my very way of life. Today I was going to change that as all the regrets of the past seemed to present themselves to me. I could no go back and change it, but I could make amends for it all, start doing it right again.
My heart beat continued to race for every stoplight I found myself sitting at. A pain in my chest was overwhelming and I realized for the first time that I was heartbroken. Never in all my years had I felt this intense pain, this striking blow to the chest. My breath was growing short, sweat trickled down my face and I knew this was for all the times I made the major error. It was for all the times I sabotaged my relationship with Derrick and all those good ones I let slip through my fingers. It was a snowball effect. I had finally let my feelings escape into the air and fly off of their own volition. I had finally sobbed of how many times I hurt someone or how many times I had been hurt. I had been holding it all in for some time.
When I arrived home, my hands were stuck to the steering wheel and the sun had finally set. I continued to look forward, stunned, frozen in the final light of the day. My phone rang, startling me. I reached over into the passenger seat. Derrick, it said. I sighed heavily and hit the ignore button. For whatever reason, Derrick wanted to break my heart again, to tell me that it was too late to make amends. His regrets had become affirmed and he certainly would regret ever attempting to love me again.
He told me that in all his life he had never had such a regret. He had never had a moment of complete anguish and suffering save for his time with me. When I heard it, it was a dagger in my heart and to hear his voice would make my ears bleed. I don't know how long I sat in the car, but it was completely dark now. There were several street lamps lighting the way, but the rest was all dark. My house appeared ghostly in the shadows. The grassy hill appeared black and a spectral figure appeared to be sitting on my porch, rocking in the chair.
My heart jumped. Who is that? A stranger or friend? I got out now, tucking my knife into my back pocket. I was feeling paranoid now, hoping that whoever sat on my porch meant me no harm. After Derrick left I had lived alone in my sadness, attempting to write the book my publishers had been waiting for. I had gone out little after breaking up with Derrick. In fact this was longest time away from home. Not having a roof over my head now caused me nervousness. I walked up the driveway.
The figured did not move when I continued up the hill except for rocking in that chair. It reminded me of something long ago, but I could not remember what. Finally as I grew closer, the sensor light popped on the figure was much more recognizable before. I opened my mouth to say something, but they did not come. The shadow nodded as I began up the steps to the porch. I turned to him, his face sullen and unlike him at all. He stood suddenly and walked over to me. His blue eyes were just as beautiful as I'd remember. He smiled. It was small smile, but it was welcome. Derrick embraced me.
We hugged for maybe two minutes in silence, a slight swaying motion prevalent the entire time. We swayed side to side until finally he released me, his arms now caressing my shoulders. He didn't say anything, so I unlocked the door, flicking on the lights as I did. The house was my safe haven, one of few places I could be vulnerable. In this house memories flooded inward, of moments that Derrick and I enjoyed our relationship in its best moments. We continued through the foyer and into the dining room. We had had many candlelight dinners there and many friends had come to join us as well. We continued into the kitchen and I hung my keys. He did this too.
The two of us had developed a routine in our time together. Our things: Keys, Jackets, Mail, Candies, anything. They always went in one specific spot. Also I think because I was just anal about things going in their right place. He was cooperative most of the time. Though it only gave him a known way to irritate me. lol. He knew how to bug me. I sat down at the table, the bright lights reminding me of Derrick's good lucks and slim body. He was so beautiful to me, even if he wasn't beautiful to anyone else.
I just stared at him, my eyes getting emotionally soft. I could feel my gaze lightening and growing into that loving gaze I always had saved for him. He stared back wondering where the hell I was staring at. He never understand how he had so much beauty in his face, so much masculinity and gentleness all at the same time. He sat now, his hand reaching for mine across the table.
"I didn't want to leave it like that," he finally said. "What I said on the phone was from an angry place."
"I could tell," I said. "I deserved it nonetheless. The heartbreak would make anyone angry."
Our fingers interlocked. For the first time in a long time, we were holding hands across the table. Sure it sounds small and insignificant, but it meant a great deal. It meant that we were joined in a powerful connection. It meant that no matter what our problems were, we were there for each other. It was the grasping, I think, that made it feel so significant.
"I made a mistake," I admitted. "I couldn't swallow my pride and truly be vulnerable. I preferred to pretend than to be real with you. I simply wasn't happy and it wasn't your fault. Sheila showed me the error of my ways."
"Sheila's a good friend," Derrick said. "She's always been able to get through to you. I'm grateful that she helped you, but how do you expect things to get better. Is it possible to start over?"
"I've never done it before. Every relationship I was in ended forever. There was no going back. For you though, I would go back. I think we should be married. It scared me beyond belief, but that was because I fear the day of losing you. I've lost so much in my life."
"I know. I've seen you lose it and I realize that I wasn't sympathetic enough."
"I was too afraid to show you all of me, to tell you what I need. You couldn't possibly know. I hid that part of me from you. Then I blamed you for being terrible."
"Then you stopped showing me affection because you were angry with yourself."
"Of course. All of these things could have been avoided. If I had done something to prevent it. I could have fixed it or..."
I stopped. It wasn't because I couldn't bear the pain of naming out the terrible mistakes of the past, but because Derrick's lips were against mine. They were soft and warm. They had always been this way and I think I knew then that no matter the fear of losing him, I needed him in my life. It only seemed right. We may have our problems, but we need each other. There's nothing more to it. We had made some mistakes down the line, but they were no unforgivable. They were normal problems that we were too naive and prideful to fix.
"I love you," I said.
"I love you too. You've been the best boyfriend I've ever had. I don't know where I would be without you," Derrick told me. He was so genuine with his words.
"I don't know where I would be without you either. Well, I kinda do. I'd end up in this house alone, moping and wishing I had a good man in my arms. I would sit here wishing I had married the man who had given so much to me over the years. Maybe we can start over?"
"I think that's a good idea. I haven't been too happy without you either. I've been sitting at my house all alone. My sisters have come by to check on me. They thought I might jump off a bridge. My family always asked what happened."
"Stupidity, Hubris," I said.
"Yeah I think so. I guess we have a lot of catching up to do before we start over."
"I agree.Let's start now."