“Fine, I will go. If that’s what you want, Lola, that’s what you’ll get.”
I gather myself up and head away from her. I try to keep my eyes fixed forwards as I move so I only think of the future and not the present that’s very quickly edging towards becoming my past, but at the last moment I can’t resist turning just to check. Her wide eyes are filled with sadness and tears, I can see that as soon as I walk out of here, she’ll fall apart which I feel horrible for… bu
t how can I make this any easier? We both knew when we got into this that it would end this way. All we had to do was keep feelings out of it.
It’s safe to say that we failed.
Goodbye, Lola, I think in my head as I pull away from her. I know I should probably say those words aloud, but I just can’t find the ability to do so. I don’t want to make this any more painful than it already is. From this moment on, we will never see each other again.
We can’t. I have to keep strong. I have to leave this town as soon as I can and I can’t get dragged back in. Now that I’ve decided that this is the end, it can’t be anything else. We both have to move on, we both need to get back to real life, it’s the only option we have.
“Just go,” she spits out to my back, seemingly sensing the same thing as me. “Go and don’t come back. This is done here, we’re finished.”
I rub my sleepy eyes as I shove the rest of my stuff in my suitcase. After a night of tossing and turning and absolutely no sleep at all, I only know one thing. I need to get out of here now. I cannot spend another minute in this damn place. I just can’t do it. I’ll pop in to the building site on my way home and leave to make sure everything is under control, but I’m pretty sure that Hank has it much better than me anyway.
Have I got everything? I ask myself desperately as I look around the motel room. I’ll be glad to put this horrible room behind me forever. Am I ready to go?
Maybe I should go to Lola’s house to say a proper goodbye to her so we don’t have to end on a sour note, but I know that I’m weak, I know I’ll get sucked back in without much effort. This sucks, but it’s the way that it has to be. Even the thought of her face in my sleepy mind makes me feel a bit dizzy and sick. I just want to hold her, I want to wrap my arms around her and claim her as my own forever more, but I can’t give her false hope. I can’t delve into this feet first, especially when it can’t become something real.
I fiddle with my car keys in my pocket as I finish checking the place, waiting for my escape, then with a deep sigh I leave it all behind. I step out into the cool, fresh morning air and I slam the door behind me with a loud bang. It’s not a relieving sensation, but it’s what I have to do. The mixed up feeling that races through my body continues as I make my way to the reception desk and I check out, then it carries on as I get into the car.
I don’t look behind me as I pull away, I don’t even glance in the rear view mirror. I also make sure that I take the long way around so I don’t pass Lola’s home. There’s that familiar pull in my chest drawing me in, but today I’m strong enough not to follow through.
I’m picking my career over love.
Yes, okay so I know that there’s a chance that I might regret it at some point, but I have all my life to fall in love. I don’t think that Lola will be the only one for me, I don’t think that I’ll only fall in love once. I can use this as a learning curve to make it better in the future. She will just be a memory in my mind, a lovely few months, and I hope that once the hurt has passed for her, she will see me the same way.[email protected]@@@[email protected]@@@@=======
I turn the music up as I get towards the building site because I’m trying to block out all of my emotions. I don’t want to think about Lola now, I just want to get this done. As I pull the car to a halt, I can see Hank and Archie already there which is good. I can get this done with just those two so there isn’t any unnecessary drama. I get that big fake smile on my face and I step out to greet them.
“Hey, boss.” Hank looks shocked to see me. “You’re in early, is there anything wrong?”
“Oh no, no not really.” I shake my head and wonder why I didn’t plan what I was going to say earlier. “It’s not that at all. It’s just… well the project is almost finished now and I have something that I need to get back home for. Do you think you can get the last few things done without me?”
Hank gives me an apologetic look, it’s almost like he can see that everything has fallen apart with my love life. I want to hold my head high and to give him a defiant look, but I can’t. My eyes fall downwards and I look at my feet instead.
“Sure, boss, me and Archie can take control of everything. I don’t think it’ll be more than an extra week anyway. Probably a lot less. I can keep you updated via email if that’s what you want?”
“Perfect. Thank you.”
“And, erm… what about the other project?” It takes me a few moments to realize what he’s talking about, but when I remember the lake, recognition flickers across my face. “After our little chat yesterday, we started it. We’re just going to get it as close to how it once was… if that’s what you still want.”
Maybe that’s a good idea. It’ll give Lola somewhere to go if she wants to remember me and her in a positive light. What we had on that day when we went to the lake was magical, made even better by the fact that she opened up to me in the most incredible way. She revealed parts of herself to me that I don’t know if many other people will get.
I would like to think of her standing there, when times get tough, just remembering.
“Yes,” I rasp back. “Please carry on with it. Like I said I will pay you well.”
“Okay, that’s great, boss. Will do.”
Once we’ve embraced and said our goodbyes, I hop back into the car with all kinds of thoughts racing through my mind. I’m hoping that the nearer I get to the city, the clearer my brain will become. The positive for me is that I can get some separation from all of this. I can go away and back to my real life. I hope Lola somehow manages to overcome it well. Somehow.
I can’t look back now, I just have to go. I’ve made my bed and I need to just lie in it.
How are you doing, sweetheart?” my dad asks me with sympathy in his eyes. He reaches out to touch my arm as he gazes at me. “You look a bit… I don’t know, sad.”